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NATURE WATCH: Here Comes the Sun


by Nona Estrin

Now comes the time of the year I most love in Vermont. Since Dec. 21 the sun, from our house, has lingered at least 25 compass degrees south of Spruce Mountain. In the next weeks the earth starts it’s tilt “south” in earnest, and within a month will be at the flanks of Spruce, on its way north. Some years, red winged blackbirds and a few earliest migrants may even be here. Things are about to be on the move! And if the snow will just oblige us, now comes the best outdoor winter time with longer days, hotter sun, and a rosy glow on  lavender shadows morning and evening. A snow picnic is in order now! All we need is a blazing day, and a sheltered spot, some time around the Feast of Saint Brigid on Feb. 7, our halfway point between Winter Solstice and the first day of spring. Or traditionally, a bonfire to honor the day!