This morning I got up to log onto work for the day, and I noticed an anomaly that I haven’t seen in these parts in a long time. SNOW. Now sadly, I didn’t get a chance to take a picture, because quite honestly, my brain was not at normal functioning levels for me to even think to do that. For the last 2 ½ years, my wake up call was between 9-9:15AM. Now, it’s 7:30AM. That 90 minute difference is a bit much for this soon-to-be 47 year old. Hopefully after a few months of this new schedule, I will be more cognizant in the morning.
Winter has finally arrived here in Southeast Pennsylvania
We haven’t seen snow in my town in a couple years. Call it climate change, call it global warming. But the last couple years, snow has been almost non-existent in my part of the world. And for someone that has had some serious difficulty with snow/cold temperatures in general, I’ve been completely A-OK with this. Yet, if this year has taught me anything, it’s to appreciate the present and stop thinking/worrying about the future.
Honestly I cannot even believe I’m saying that! If anyone knows me, you know that Winter is extremely difficult for me. My Seasonal Depression (also known as SAD), is usually over the roof between now and Mid-March. My energy levels plummet, my motivation is practically non-existent. And yet, 2020 showed me that it is NOT worth it! The warrior in me wants to fight this. Until I get to my Heavenly home, I need to understand that where I am living at right now, I need to deal with the good AND the bad. So I need to make the most of the time I have here.
Lately I’ve been watching a lot of documentaries about my ancestors from Ireland, Scotland and Scandinavia. I’m a Scotch-Irish Viking, dangit! And let me tell you, they did some really cool stuff back in the day when it came to Winter. Without getting in all the magical properties of their culture (I cannot go down that rabbit hole for personal reasons), I’ve been mainly watching the culinary and domesticated ways my ancestors handled the cold. Especially in that part of the world, there are areas that sees the sun rise and set and only a few hours from each other. Darkness for most of the year sounds incredibly upsetting to me. But I like to think of myself as a domesticated pet who has NO idea how my feral brethren did it for as long as they did. In many ways, the Industrial Revolution made many of us lazy. As easy as it is to switch on a light, or turn on a fireplace heater, I can easily say 90% of this population would die in the event of an EMP disaster.
How much would I love to have a wood burning stove in my house, as well as a window in my kitchen, part of my deck covered, and a cobb stove outside? These are things on my wish list, and until then, I need to work with what I have. We are planning on staying here for a while, and until then, we might as well really get into the nesting process that I ignored when I moved in here 5 years ago. The moment cold weather hits, I retreat into my own depression, and it’s really easy to just stay there. This year, I am going to press on through that and force the change that needs to be made. There’s a big difference in hibernating during winter and retreating. In my eyes, when you retreat, you walk away, you surrender. When you hibernate, you go into quiet mode for a temporary amount of time. Retreating is permanent, whereas hibernating is temporary.
So, this year, I’m going to hibernate.
Taking from my Scandinavian ancestors, I turn to the old tradition of Hygge. (pronounced Hoo-Ga). It is the tradition of nesting, getting cozy, hibernating. There are amazing YouTube videos that talk about Hygge and what it entails. SLOW AND SIMPLE LIVING. If you want to understand my need for slow and simple living, go check out my blog post here.
The Lord created this world for a reason. There’s a reason why we are born to a certain country, race, culture, climate, etc. I have spent countless years trying to get away from a season that I never really got to understand. Why would God have me live in the North if I’m not supposed to enjoy it? There’s no doubt I LOVE the change of the seasons. Even Autumn into Winter, there is a small period where my body, mind and soul enjoy the change. But it’s a very short time, and I spiral quickly afterwards. So, how does one try to keep the joy for that entire season, like I do the other three?
This is my quest.
Now that I am working from home, I have the ability to nest a bit more. Before, I was out of the house somewhere between 6:30AM and 9PM, depending on where I was working. No more! Linus is quite happy that Mama is home every day, and if a puppy’s love is not motivation enough, I’m in big trouble!
How do you hibernate in the Winter? I’m legitimately curious. This is a big challenge for me, so any advice would be truly appreciative!
The Homesteading Hobbit