April 9

I took some time today to be outside. I always find it centers me to be out amongst the trees, listening to the sounds of nature. It was renewing to walk in the wind and feel the sun on my face. I’m thankful for the sense of peace that gave me.

Feb 6

I’m seriously tired of the cold. The snow. And the wind. I’m trying really hard to find some good things in this miserable weather. I was talking with a co-worker the other day about winter. We agreed that it isn’t that we hate it. After all, there is still fun to be had in winter. I do like sledding and ice skating, snowmobiling and skiing. It’s just that with this particular winter, it has been too cold to be outside much at all. Going from my car to my office requires a sprint because the wind is brutal. By the time I get to my office door, I look like I’ve been sobbing. My eyes have watered up, my face is chapped. And I don’t think my feet have been completely warm since October.

Yes, this winter has been challenging. However, I did actually note a few things on my quick jaunts outside today. Have you noticed how when the sun reflects just right on the snow, it sparkles likes glitter? I love that. It seems magical. And there’s a tree in my yard that hasn’t lost all of the berries. They’re hanging like small little ornaments. It attracts birds, and a cardinal sitting on a branch against the white snow is a sight that’s always lovely to me. I’m also fortunate enough to work on a campus that has a park-like setting. There is a pond that attracts a large amount of geese, which typically roam the grounds at will. The buildings are separated by a creek and a large stone bridge and two smaller footbridges connect the sides. There are groves of trees and landscaping that includes a large amount of flowering bushes and native plants. In all seasons, it’s truly a beautiful place to come to on a daily basis. Of course, when something becomes the norm, it’s easy to forget how unique it may really be. Yet there are times I’m reminded. Like today when I was crossing the bridge and a bunny hopped towards me. Or the other night, when I was on that same bridge and the lamps reflected off the frozen creek and outlined the trees and rocks and nature, and the stillness of the setting somehow seemed alive.

As much as I’m counting down the days until Spring (42), I am thankful for the nature around me. Winter can beautiful, even the miserably cold ones.