Monday, December 29, 2014

December End

Near normal, colder temperatures just arriving to close out December. For the past week, the thermometer barely dropped below freezing at night and daytime temps reached high 40s to low 50s. Colder weather will ring in the New Year, then a storm looks to be brewing for the weekend. However, longer range forecasts predict a warming trend again by mid to late January.

As the warm weather lingered through much of December, signs of more spring-like conditions were evident: a guy running in shorts, motorcycle riders, cyclists, active chipmunks with cheek pouches stuffed with seeds, open water everywhere, a great blue heron, mud, fog, deer ticks, green grass growing in our yard.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas from Champlain Valley

Christmas Day: mid 40s, a hint of blue sky, icy driveways, and spectacular views from the farm fields of Charlotte, Vermont across Lake Champlain to the snow-capped Adirondack Mountains.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Christmas Eve

Well, it won't be a white Christmas and it won't be cold. The high temperature forecast for Christmas day in Newmarket is 56 degrees Fahrenheit, and a third day of rain, sometimes heavy.

The woods are wet. The ground is soggy. Mosses, mushrooms, and lichens are flourishing in this temperate rainforest of December 2014.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Winter's Eve

A sloppy December so far, mostly rain and fluctuating temperatures. The ground is bare and barely frozen. The weather forecast for Christmas Eve predicts heavy rain and a high temperature of 51 degrees Fahrenheit. A white Christmas it will not be.

Tonight, this winter's eve, we welcome the longest night of the year and the approach of a new moon on Tuesday. On our pre-dawn walk with Kodi and Henna this morning, the air crisp and clear, our eyes wandered to the horizon and the sliver moon. In this phase, the old moon is said to be clasping the new moon. We paused to marvel at the dark star-studded sky, the hint of light on the horizon, the sliver moon, the quiet on a mid-December Saturday morning, before most people were stirring and shopping.

We went for a second walk with the dogs a few hours later, the temperature still below freezing, as it should be in December. Hoar frost decorated plants and a thin veneer of ice coated wetland waters.

A lovely winter's eve.

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We rise early, well before sunrise. It helps to go to bed early. Fortunately the New Year's Eve celebratory fireworks in the neighborhoo...