Out Like a Lion

Spring is here!
We made it though winter once again!
Wait, what? There’s a nor’easter threatening to dump snow on the East coast tomorrow?  What’s this? There is as much snow outside my door here in central New Hampshire as any other time this winter! Wait a minute – the calendar says today is the vernal equinox, spring is scheduled to start at 12:15pm Eastern time. Yet outside the temperature is 15 degrees and the winds have it feeling well below zero! Happy Spring.

Yes, it is a happy spring. Today, we experience an equal amount of daylight as we do darkness and the days will just get filled with even more and more sunlight, warming the earth in the northern hemisphere.


March has always been a month of tremendous weather and copious amounts of snow. The beginning of this month came in like a lamb up here. Another thaw took all the snows back to bare ground, even up here on the mountainside.  I was even thinking about toying around in the garden threatening to lay down two new raised beds we still have to place and get started.  However, there is a good 2-1/2 feet of compacted snow covering everything up once again. So much for that thought.

I love winter and all it has to offer. I find that it is as beautiful in its own unique way and has it’s fair share of crystal clear blue sky days and spectacular sunsets not often written about. We tend to hear more about the grey days of winter – but I find there as many gray days in any other season. Winter’s beauty is unique and if you don’t like the cold at all – you will never see it.  I made friends with the cold a long time ago – finding it better to get outside in the cold from time to time either skiing, sledding, ice skating, snowmobiling, snow-shoeing – and you find soon enough you aren’t cold for long once you begin to have some fun in it.

Newfound Lake, New Hampshire

Once you are out there enjoying winter and take the moment to gaze around on whatever trail you may be on, it’s hard not to be overwhelmed by the unique beauty winter has to offer.  Its colors not as rich perhaps as other seasons. The trees black outlines mixed with muted browns, grays amid the dark evergreens. Shades of white with hues of blue at times depending on the cold, paint the landscape. Mother Nature takes care of painting the morning and evening sky with her full spectrum of colors never skimping on the reds, oranges and pinks.  She reminds up that the earth is alive even when it seems not to be.

Every fall I plant garlic to overwinter. It’s a reminder to me that despite the blankets of snow, insulating snow – that dormant doesn’t mean dead and that life will spring forth. The last few lines in Bette Midler song, The Rose written by Gordon Mills that illustrates this beautifully.

“Just remember in the winter, beneath the bitter snows
Lies the seed, that with the sun’s love in the spring becomes the rose.”

Now despite the official start to spring later today doesn’t mean we won’t see more snow this month or even in April. It snowed 3 inches up here last Mother’s Day. Even at my Connecticut house, we would get snow in April, you just knew it wouldn’t last the day usually. New Hampshire where we are now in the Lakes Region is a bit different, we live at 1500ft versus the CT house which is at 300ft above sea-level.  We’ve had a couple of thaws this winter, one in January another in February. An early mud season was starting since the February thaw had temperatures up into the 50s and 60s even up here. All the snow on the mountainside was basically back down to bare ground.  Then we had the third nor-easter, I think the weather station named it Quinn. Mark said that we’ve had a total of 116 inches about 9-1/2 ft of snow so far this winter season – thank god for those thaws!

Ragged Mountain, New Hampshire

To celebrate the end of the winter season, we will be out enjoying what is supposed to be another beautiful blue sky day on the ski slopes.  The trails are in fantastic condition and what better way to finish out the last hours of winter and bring in spring?! This afternoon apres-ski, I’ll start some seeds in the kitchen window to celebrate and commemorate the start of such a promising new season.

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