If you've been around these parts for a while, you know that the month of February and I have a bit of a history not always so pleasant. Yesterday's post and comments reminded me of the intentions I once set for myself and my family, and the work I did in those darker winter days that were sometimes a challenge. I remembered the Winter Manifesto that I shared here in 2009, and that then made its way into The Rhythm of Family in 2011. I hadn't looked at it in likely that many years, but thought it would be fun to do so, and to compare them with the reality of today.
So, below...the words from the original Winter Manifesto with photographs from this week.
1. Follow the sun wherever you find it. Rejoice in the slowly-growing-longer days.
2. Make stuff.
3. With gratitude for the labor of summer and fall, do everything in front of the fire. Morning, noon and night.
4. Get out there every day, no matter how cold or quick the visit may be. Through crunchy snow underfoot and breath-warmed wool on your face, remmeber the magic and wonder of it all. Try not to take it for granted.
7. Gather often with friends. To commiserate. To laugh. To warm the spirit.
8. Savor the memories and bounty of past season's harvests. Plan and dream for the one yet to come.
. . . . . .
Perhaps my Vitamin D intake is at last where it should be, or perhaps my chakras are magically aligned (I say with a grin), or perhaps these years are going by so fast that I hardly have time to notice the calendar month at all anymore. It doesn't matter if I know the reason - February has been growing on me in recent years. The slow pace, the winter lethargy feels fittingly reflective of many of the wild animals outside our door in their own state of slower, only-the-essentials winter activity (oh, I must give one of my favorites, Winter World, some air time as a read aloud this month for the kids).
As I look ahead to the busy days of spring to come, I know that our time will soon be full of hard work and extended energy from dawn to dusk (and earlier and beyond). This period of rest that is my February is essential preparation for what is to come next. And the inevitable restleness it creates, becomes the very thing - the very essential fuel - that gets us up and moving for what good things comes next.
I hope you, too, are enjoying this season just as you intend to!