Oh, For the Love of All Things Holy . . .

It’s snowing again.

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The Wind She Blow . . .

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The wind she blow on Lak’ Champlain

By’m’by she blow some more.

You’ll never drown on Lak’ Champlain . . .

So long as you stay on shore.

–(to be spoken with a laconic and wry French-Canadian accent)

It’s inevitable.

Whenever the wind blows strong at our house on Lake Champlain, someone recites this old folk rhyme.

Take yesterday, for instance. Most of the rest of the United States was basking in spring warmth, enjoying outdoor activities, and doing garden chores.

On Lake Champlain, we were watching, in awe, as the waves crashed on the seawall and ice built up on . . . everything.

At least it wasn’t snow . . .

Just Another Blogger . . .

IMG_0008_2Just another set of photos, from just another winter-weary blogger.

There’s No Fireside . . .

IMG_3764“Níl aon tinteán mar do thinteán féin.”

The first time we went to Ireland, on our honeymoon, we bought this plaque with Gaelic words that translate to say, “There is no fireside like your own fireside.”

It was a sentimental and appropriate choice for newly-wed introverts, ready to commence sharing a fireside and both believing that home is the best place to be.

The plaque sits by our fireside, bearing testament to a continued love of home, now, twenty-five years later.

I always like being home, coming home, having a place that is “HOME” to me.

But never do I appreciate my own fireside more than days like today.

See the "feels like" temp in the bottom left corner? That -30 Celsius

See the “feels like” temp in the bottom left corner? That -30 Celsius

We’ve seen snowier and we’ve seen colder. But that doesn’t diminish the fact that the snow is “falling” sideways today and we can’t see a boundary between lake and shore and sky. It’s a day where photos in full color are simply shades of gray.IMG_4317 IMG_4296

We’ll have to go out later and clear some of that snow but, for now, the fireside is the place to be, for folks and for critters.

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It’s a day when the weather can be used as a excuse for doing what we please, or not doing much at all, a grownup’s version of a snow day, off from school.

It’s a day to stay home, at the best fireside–our own.

Florida . . . Yes!

If you live in the northern hemisphere, you might need a break. I know I did.

At our house, right now, it’s 15 degrees Fahrenheit (about minus 9 Celsius), with a forecast of colder temps and heavy snow in the next few days.

But that’s okay. Because I just had my mid-winter break in Florida and filled up on sun and sea, good food and beautiful sights. Even better, we had 12 days of time with family and dear friends. So, in spite of the weather outside, my inside feels warm and cozy. Maybe these photos can warm you up, too!

Florida can be annoying. Too many people are loving it to death. We all want what Florida has to give and we all want it in the same three-month period. That makes for hellish traffic, ugly strips of chain stores, and garish tackiness.

And yet . . .

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Florida still retains its considerable charms.

Amazing wildlife. We didn’t see dolphins this year but we saw lots of birds! (Click on any photo for the details)

Lots of vintage linens! I found a lot to love in the historical village on Sanibel Island and in the town of Arcadia, where there are dozens of vintage/antique shops in a two-block area.

Sun. Sand. Glittering turquoise water. Flowers everywhere. The beaches on the Gulf Coast, on Sanibel and Gasparilla Islands and at Longboat Key, offer miles of aimless walking, with nothing more important than looking for shells.

The perfect antidote to winter.

Miles of perfection

Miles of perfection

It’s the Rime of the Season

Say what you will about winter, about the cold and inconvenience and the lack of daylight hours. I still think winter provides more chances for dramatic and remarkable beauty than any other season.

We know what the loveliness of the other seasons look like but only winter can provide the unusual spectacle of a swirling, freezing steam off a lake that is warm only when compared with the temperature of the air.

IMG_1801And then, after a really cold night and a freezing fog, the world is covered in rime.

IMG_3151Every detail, encased and outlined in ice crystals. (Click any photo for the full detail!)

It’s all subtle and monochromatic and understated and stunning.

It’s winter–what will today bring?