Here in Seattle, WA, it's felt like winter for several weeks now. However, technically, we still have about 15 more days before the season dawns. The temperature dropped to 32 degrees Fahrenheit a couple times now. It's steadily in the upper 40's to low 50's, upper 50's on a warm day. For this Southern girl, that is cold. Though, even in South Carolina, where we moved from, it is only a high of 60 degrees today, so it seems to simply be a cold winter all around.
Another dilemma the Pacific Northwest produces this time of year is the rain. People in general have this perception about Seattle that it rains constantly all year round. That is false. We hardly get any rain during the summer, but during winter that perception is strikingly accurate. It doesn't rain heavily, not the afternoon down pours I'm used to during a Carolina summer, but it is wet--constantly.
I'm stating this as fact because I don't want to complain. I love this area and the rain is actually extremely inspiring to my writing. However, I strongly dislike being cold.
On the other hand, I love the holiday season. I love the twinkling lights brightening up downtown, the Macy's star and the Christmas tree in Westlake Park. I love Egg Nog Lattes at Starbucks and that warm feeling you get when you come in out of the cold.
I love Scout, our Elf on the Shelf, and the fun that we have. I love the joy of decorating, bringing cheer and liveliness into our house. I love baking and drinking hot tea on a cold winter's night.
Do you see my problem? I don't like the cold, but specifically because of that unfavorable condition yields the reason I take so much enjoyment in being home where it is warm and illuminated.
I have a love, hate relationship with winter. Though, in many ways, that tension is a perspective to view all of life--a series of checks and balances, of give and take. I don't like walking outside in the rain, but when I get home and get cozy and warm on the couch with a mug of coffee and a good book beside the lights of the Christmas tree, it is a happy, satisfied feeling.
The sun setting by 5pm and the rain often make me feel gloomy and stoic, but the joy of giving to family and friends and the cheer of the season gives me joy.
I'll try to concentrate more on the joy for this month. However, we'll see what this post looks like after a couple more months of this weather without the wonder of the Holidays to keep me warm.