Lately I’ve been feeling the natural rhythms of the season, which have come on especially strong with the timely arrival of snow.  After the excitement of the Christmas season, the New Year welcomes quiet days and slow living.  Winter signals a retreat into the warmth of the home as well as a retreat into oneself.  Extra time indoors lends itself to cozying up with a good read or thought-provoking film.  Sounds of winds blowing out of doors makes warm stews and hot teas extra savoury.  Shorter days call for fire-lit evenings spent strategizing over board games.  Bright winter moons light the way for crunchy walks and breaths of crisp air.  Quiet forests filled with trees with snow-covered branches beg to be visited.

 

 

 

Winter signals a retreat into the warmth of the home as well as a retreat into oneself.  Extra time indoors lends itself to cozying up with a good read or thought-provoking film.  Sounds of winds blowing out of doors makes warm stews and hot teas extra savoury.  Shorter days call for fire-lit evenings spent strategizing over board games.  Bright winter moons light the way for crunchy walks and breaths of crisp air.  Quiet forests filled with trees with snow-covered branches beg to be visited.

 

 

One of the reasons I anticipated a July baby was so that I could more comfortably take my heartier six month old out in winter without as much of the concern I might have had over a younger, more fragile newborn baby.  At whatever age, a baby provides a convenient excuse for laying low and retreating indoors as we’re naturally called to do during this season.  Suddenly the extra snuggles and longer naps are permissible.  Slow living can be embraced and those fleeting moments soaked up.

Winter stress makes summer sweetness – and the stress of warm times makes us long for the strange sweetness of cold ones.

As Adam Gopnik states in his 2011 Massey Lecture Winter, one of my favourites of the lecture series,  “Winter stress makes summer sweetness – and the stress of warm times makes us long for the strange sweetness of cold ones.”  The transition of seasons connect with us on such a deep level that it seems unnatural to go against winter’s urgings.

 

 

With all of this in mind, I’d like to begin a series on the topic of winter and its call for quiet, inward retreats.  I’ve noticed a pull within myself to embrace quiet days of contemplation and reflection.  This series should highlight some of my much loved pastimes and reasons for enjoying winter.