• Sofias Country Gardens

Advent season


On advent Sunday it started to snow. What perfect timing! The skies have been grey for weeks now, and this makes the days seem even shorter and darker than they are. Although, it must be said they are short! The sun rises after nine am, and sets at three thirty in the afternoon, so almost eighteen hours of the day are spent in pitch darkness. Here in the country there is no light pollution like we have in the cities, so dark is really black.

The snow lights it all up. It reflects the light from the stars, and suddenly the surroundings aren't anymore a blur of black but has clearly visible contour. Even at night the trees and shrubs are clearly discernible once they have a layer of white, and therefore the first snow is always eagerly anticipated. For many years we have had a bet of when it will come, and if it will last. Mostly though it doesn't last long. Climate change has really changed the weather this far north.

Yer this year they snow came early, a thin little blanket covering the ground and decorating the woods as if Father Frost had made a visit.

I love how the snow turns the world into a monochrome version of it self. If it weren't for the red of the old farmhouse and surrounding buildings, I may as well have taken black and white pictures.

The next day the clouds parts and the sun comes out for a few hours. It invariably melts the snow, but for a short time my gardens are perfectly beautiful in their winter slumber. A fern catches my eye and I marvel once again at natures intriguing paterns.

Advent time. Time to prepare for Christmas I always thought, but for those who are Christian the beginning of the liturgical year in Western Christianity and the expectant awaiting for the Nativity of Christ and the return of Christ at the second coming. I can sort of relate to that, as I eagerly await my youngsters return home for the holiday season. It is a joyful wait, filled with happiness thinking about having the family together in the home.

Meanwhile I potter about and make plans for the lunches and dinners we will have. We have the freezer well stocked with vegetables from the kitchen garden, and the dry storage cupboard is brimming over with dried herbs and mushrooms. I read up on recipes for beans and peas, onion soups and hearty home made comfort food. This time of year is not for skinny meals...

The days may be short, but soon we will have reached the longest night of the year and then the light returns. Until then I shall enjoy the wait. Wishing you all a peaceful advent time!



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