The Winter Solstice

Beautiful Paperwhites on January 29th.
Beautiful Papperwhites

It’s been awhile since I was here typing up a new post.  2015 was a year of great changes and new territory and I didn’t blog for a few months as I have been trying to keep up.  But here we are with the year drawing to a close and what a great year it has been.

I am, of course, looking forward to Christmas and seeing my family- but I am also looking forward to the winter solstice.  It holds no prominence in my religion or anything of that nature, but I love that solstice.  The longest night. For me and so many other farmers and gardeners, it is the day with the greatest opportunity for rest.

Working with the land is a hard job, so many things can go wrong, so many things are out of your control and winter is a time of rest.  More than New Years or the first day of school, the winter solstice resets the clock.  From this day forward the days will get longer, spring will be fast approaching and then the summer solstice- the longest day of the year.  I don’t notice that day quite as much because I am moving like crazy to keep up with the gardens, herb shows, and markets.  Grass grows faster than you can pull it and the weeds are formidable adversaries.  At that time, the slow pace of winter will be as distant a memory as the pretty little narcissus bulbs that were flowering when all else was grey and bleak.

But for now, the winter solstice is approaching giving us ample time to sit quietly and reflect- a new year is coming what will it hold?

The Winter Solstice, The Longest Night

The longest night has just passed.

Did you feel it?

We did, we kept noticing the time, thinking that it should be much later than it was in reality.  The evening wore on with cookies baking, gift baskets being stuffed, and herbed salts, salamoia bolognese, being prepared.  It was a quiet night, the rain that had poured from the heavens all the previous night and this day ceased just long enough for a few rays of sunshine to grace the landscapes before the dark crept over us.  It was not a darkness to be feared, but one that encouraged rest.

From here on out, the days will gradually grow longer and eventually bringing warmth but definitely bringing life refreshed.  Below the ground, the Narcissus bulbs are beginning to stir- soon little green spears will pierce the ground followed by buds that will one day show us their beautiful white and yellow faces.  Those are some of my favorite flowers because they tell me, “Cheer Up, spring is just around the corner.”

I always find parallels to life in my garden.  In life, we will walk through the longest nights, but spring will come.

“For his anger endures but for a moment; in his favor is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.” Psalm 30:5

 

daffodil