Saturday, December 1, 2007

A Dusting of Winter

I sleepily rose from my warm bed this morning and opened the curtains to the most lovely sight -- a world covered with the first dusting of snow for the season. Growing up in the northeast mid-century meant long, snow-filled winters, with the certainty of a white Christmas each year. As our climate has gradually changed, snow is much less common here and our traditional white Christmas is seldom a reality. But, my expectation of Christmas remains cold and white, and the first dusting lifts my spirits with the possibility that more will follow before the holiday.

The tiny juncos in my garden share my love of snow, I believe -- on snowy mornings they perch in my Rose of Sharon branches and nibble at the thistle feeders -- hopping happily in the powdery blanket of white. When snow is forecast I always make certain my bird feeders are filled, because the birds come in droves on snowy mornings to feast.

When my children were little, we always celebrated the first snow by baking a batch of Christmas cookies. Today, though, I have numerous other chores and errands, and a birthday dinner to prepare for a friend this evening, so the cookie pans will remain in the cabinet.

For now I will spend a few minutes at the window with my coffee mug at hand, watching the tiny birds celebrate this lovely morning.

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