The Gifts of the Season

Welcome! Have you taken down your Christmas decorations yet? I haven’t. I’m not ready yet. I’m glad I don’t live in a neighborhood with a housing authority that requires I remove my Christmas lights by January 2 or something ridiculous like that. I’m so thankful I live in the country. I could keep my Christmas lights up until July if I wanted. I don’t -- but I’m glad I could.

We’re having typical Pennsylvania weather in the Atlantic Community. We had an all-out blizzard on December 30. By New Year’s Eve I had at least six inches of snow in my yard. A steady rain melted it by January 3. As I write snow is blowing toward my house and covering the grass. Gotta love winter in Pennsylvania.

I’ll admit it – I like snow. Freshly snow-coated trees give my spirits a lift. Winter nights can be especially beautiful when moonbeams bounce off snow. There’s something uplifting about seeing newly fallen snow when I look out the window first thing in the morning.

While winter is the bottom of the barrel as far as seasons are concerned, I’m glad I live in a place where I get to experience all four seasons. Last year was truly spectacular. I can’t remember a year when we had more beautiful weather than 2016. The winter was mild. Spring was long and gorgeous. Flowering trees exploded with especially vivid colors. Summer was sunny and hot – just as summer is supposed to be. Fall was absolutely gorgeous. Leaves turned stunning shades of scarlet, gold, and tangerine. And, best of all, almost every day last fall was sunny until the beginning of December. I can’t remember a year when I saw as much blue sky as I did in 2016. What a blessing it was. I especially appreciate sunshine since it lifts my mood.

But, even in winter, the Atlantic community offers priceless gifts. Two deer skidded across the road as I approached my house tonight, and another ran into my back yard. I’m glad I live in a place where I get to see deer almost daily.

My dad pointed out a particularly vivid blue jay at my feeder this morning. Later in the day I noticed a kestrel perched on a wire as I drove along Adamsville Road.

Short, gray days really bum me out. I’m looking forward to spring, but even in winter I get to see snow floating to the ground, blue jays pecking at sunflower seeds, hawks on wires, and deer running through my back yard. Yes, it’s winter. Yes, Christmas is over. But I still get to live in the Atlantic community. And that’s a gift in itself.

Have a wonderful week. Blessings!