Winter is here, and actually nearly over. Here in Southern California what that usually means is...well not much is different except for marginally cooler temperatures and shorter days. I don't mind the shorter days as I am such a night owl and I feel pretty productive during the darker hours. But I do miss having a proper Winter with all it conjures up. For me that's frosty windows, the crunch of footfalls through snow, and breath steaming as you walk under snow laden tree branches. It makes me think big fuzzy socks and cups of hot chocolate and warm snuggly sweaters.
To get anything even closely resembling that here I have to get into my truck and head up to the mountain an hour away. The "Mountain" I speak of so often is more commonly known as The Angeles National Forest and the base of it starts about 15 minutes from here, but it generally takes at least half an hour before you hit any real snow and really a good hour to get to the good stuff. That's when we have snow up there. Which, surprisingly for a max elevation of about 8000 feet, is not all that often.
But when it's there its magical. We're so deprived of snow here that the lightest snowfall feels like a completely different world. Something Tolkien or Lewis would create. Its full of the promise of fantasy and enchantment and mystery. When the flakes start swirling around your head and the earth starts to look like someone dropped a bag of powdered sugar you forget you belong to a mundane 21st century and start to imagine dragons and castles and sorcerers.
The mountain has become my special place where I go to recharge and bring a sense of balance to my life. There is no cell service up there and no gas stations, shops, or residents really. So, when you're there you are truly away from everyone. I visit it often all year long, usually with my husky, Luna, who is of course, made for the mountains. But it's during the winter when the snow is falling that I love it best. That's when it feels truly my own and as though it's creating this snowy magic just for us.
As I sit and write this blog, I'm looking at these photos of my last snowy day up there and wondering if the magic will happen again this year or if we'll have to wait until next Winter. I'm dreaming of cold toes and noses, and brisk walks through shin deep snow with Luna. Hoping to catch an afternoon snowfall so I can watch my hair get covered in white flakes and try to catch some on my tongue. For those of you who live in colder climates, this may all seem quite mundane or even boring, but for me, its a fairytale come true.
What things about Winter time do you love best? Leave a comment and let me know. And don't forget to subscribe to stay in touch.
Also, here are a few recommendations from the shop for your perfect winter escape...