wherever the sun lies warm

“The Magpie” by Claude Monet

Today is the first of February, snowy, brilliant, but dripping with the sound of spring wherever the sun lies warm, and calling with the heart of spring yonder where the crows are assembling. There is spring in the talk of the chickadees outside my window, and in the cheerful bluster of a red squirrel in the hickory.
~ Dallas Lore Sharp
(The Atlantic Year Book: Being a Collection of Quotations from the Atlantic Monthly)

23 thoughts on “wherever the sun lies warm”

    1. Interesting indeed. What attracted me to the painting was how well he captured the sunlight, so brightly reflecting on the snow. Happy Groundhog Day, Frank!

    1. You’re welcome, Leelah! This marks the end of the dimmest quarter of the year as we enter the ever-brightening approach to the equinox.

  1. Sigh. Spring just can’t come soon enough for me. Yes, the weather-folks keep telling us what a *mild* winter we’ve been having, but to me, it’s been pretty beastly. Now if we’d had more sunshine … even the cold days wouldn’t seem so awful.

    1. Well, now we’re closer to the first day of spring than we were to the first day of winter! 🙂 You guys have had much worse weather this winter than we have but we’re expecting a taste of brutal cold (below zero) tomorrow and Saturday. I agree, a little sunshine goes a long way this time of year.

  2. Well, we’ve passed the midway point of Winter as of the day after Groundhog Day, so that’s a welcome sign and the sun is getting up two minutes earlier each day – yay for that. I always say I will not complain about the heat, but this year I promise myself I will not utter a word about the heat and humidity! That is a beautiful picture of the snow and the Magpie taking it all in.

    1. Not only is there more light every day the light itself is more direct and brighter and soon the camera will be picking that up. 🙂 I’m glad you enjoyed the painting. It reminded me of winters in the past, when we actually had snow cover in January and February. Good luck not complaining about the heat and humidity come summer! 😉

      1. Yes, those bright sun rays and the camera don’t always jive. When I walked through the neighborhood every day I would notice the angle of the sun as the Summer would draw to a close. I’d walk at the same time every day so really noticed the changes. This tme of year as well, but snow or freezing rain and trying to drive to the Park more, ruins noticing those subtle changes in a routine trek. Up in northern Michigan they get those whopper snowfalls and they used to have a contest on a local radio station where you sent in a postcard to the station’s meteorologist for your prediction when the last bit of snow melted in the U.P. Someone up there kept track of this. It was well into Spring. I say I won’t complain, but will forget once it is muggy and buggy once again.

        1. Sounds like you pay close attention to the changing light, too. I have a blogging friend who lives on the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. She hasn’t posted since May, but her last post said she still had a pile of snow on May 2! Over the years I’ve been awed by the amount of snow they get up there. Well, this morning my local weatherman observed that here it’s been a winter without winter. Friday it’s supposed to get up to 60°F!

          1. Yes and the shadows. I think I will return to walking in the neighborhood and taking the car for a run, then putting it in the garage and walking to/from the Park. I liked that better as there were things to see there as well. My blogging friend now is on the road with her husband for Winter (they leave September – April), but the first year she stayed there by herself as her husband finished off working in Iowa, sold their house and due to Covid, she decided she’d stay there alone. She showed pics of the massive amounts of snow – it was just incredible. That temp sounds perfect to me – perhaps you will remain “tropical” until the real heat sets in!

          2. I do love how long the tree’s shadows get in winter… That sounds like a good plan balancing walking with running the car. This has been such an eerily warm winter… “According to CT meteorologist Ryan Hanrahan, January 2023 set the record for the warmest on record at Bradley International Airport, with a mean of ~9.7 degrees above average.”

          3. Yes, I would rather get that long walk in by myself. I think I mentioned that there is a guy at the Park who insists on walking with me. For years he has walked with a woman there and they must have had a tiff as she arrives very late now – they both arrived the same time, for many years. So he has decided he will walk along with me, something I don’t appreciate as I like to meander around, especially with the camera. Sigh. I don’t want to be rude. But driving the car, bringing it home, then setting out again back and forth through the neighborhoods to the Park makes sense to me. I’ll be in the poorhouse with peanuts if I go around four times and may just use that as the reason why I’m doing this. 🙂 That is impressive for January. We are nearing the end of our wind advisory – strong and gusty winds all day and a driving rain. I thought about the trees and the soggy grounds. Too much to think about every day.

          4. Well, buying lots of peanuts still costs less than maintaining a pet at home, when you think of vet bills and pet food and toys, etc. And you get so much pleasure interacting with your furry friends. ♡ Seems like as good a reason as any to wind up in the poorhouse!

          5. I agree with you Barbara. I really enjoy interacting with them. I have to get a video sometime of when I arrive and haven’t been there for a day or two and I’m mobbed! And a few Jays shrieking … it makes my morning. I can understand why Jocelyn enjoys her morning encounters so much. I still have a 2-pound bag of walnuts and some suet to give them, plus some unshelled peanuts (20 pound bag). I worry I can’t get down there for a while, so I would take extra treats to them in advance of a storm – I did that before the January 25th storm. As to the suet, it was either too cold and even if I crumble the suet, it would have frozen it, then it was so rainy and I didn’t want the walnuts out getting moldy. I roll the walnuts along the grass or sidewalk toward them like I am bowling. They sit and wait for the walnut to roll over. I started doing that with the gray and black squirrels as they are more timid. The Fox squirrels just come running over.

          6. I never thought of feeding walnuts to squirrels. Hmmm…. I do miss having a suet feeder and the red-bellied woodpecker who used to come visit it several times a day….

          7. I like the woodpeckers too – we only have two woodpeckers at Council Point Park, a red-bellied and a downy. The squirrels love walnuts and “walnut bowling” … they stand up on their haunches and look like a bowling pin and pounce on it once it reaches them. We had a gorgeous day here today – I hope the snow is done for the year.

          8. I mentioned the walnuts to Tim — I think he’s going to get some. He said maybe the blue jays won’t want them and the squirrel will have them all to himself. 🙂 It will be fun to see what he makes of them. It feels like spring here. It’s too early! Yesterday morning, before dawn, I heard for the first time this year, mourning doves cooing. A pair landed on the balcony railing about mid-day. ♡

          9. Yes, it is funny because the blue jays always fly from tree to tree as I walk along because they know the three places I make drops or I sometimes will feed the squirrels on the path, but worry about hawks if I do that. Blue jays know thy can’t carry the walnuts away – they’re probably mad! Tell Tim to roll them like you would a bowling ball, but I’ll bet as soon as your squirrel sees the walnut, it will come running. You’ll have to get some pictures through the window. It felt so good here too Barbara. Sunny too, both days. I heard a lot of birds – mourning doves – nice. I love them too. And did you see Jocelyn Anderson’s post that the red-winged blackbirds were back at Kensington Metropark? I’ll bet I see them this week at Council Point Park as it will be very mild all week, though rainy a couple of days.

          10. I added walnuts to the food shopping list. I hope we get to the store tomorrow, we’re both fighting colds… Tim will be glad that the blue jays won’t be able to snatch them. This morning we were laughing because the titmice have figured out how to carry off the peanuts but the chickadees can’t do it. At least not yet. I’ll try to get pictures. I think I missed that Jocelyn Anderson post, although I see a lot of them. Will try scrolling through… It’s just too warm for February here. Ten degrees above average.

          11. Sorry to hear you are both fighting colds – I know they say colds are a virus and not because of the weather, but how can it be healthy having Springlike weather one day, brutally cold weather the next day? Those Blue Jays are nervy – I walk from the parking lot and they start screeching to other Blue Jays that I’m there with peanuts. They will then fly from tree to tree to see how they can swoop down and swipe a peanut as a squirrel is sitting right there. The poor Chickadees are so tiny but they are so quick. I come home with shots where I know I took a picture of a Chickadee eating sunflower seeds, but one is not in the photo when I see it on the screen. I hope you have luck with the walnuts; I’m sure you will get a few photos through the the door in the comfort of your home!

          12. I’m so tempted to get some seeds for those sweet little chickadees but I know that will only bring in the hordes of starlings…

          13. Those chickadees have my heart too Barbara … I hate that the starlings have to ruin everything as to feeding the birds. I took some corncobs to the Park this morning. I know this freezing rain which will go into tomorrow morning and then a rapid freeze-up may jeopardize me going to the Park until Sunday. I took corncobs and distributed them with their peanuts and seeds and gave the loose corn to the ducks. Everyone will be set and likely stay in their respective trees to wait out this mess.

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