We have snow on the way...literally! They are calling for gale force winds this afternoon as our temps drop from the really bizarre 60's (where they've been hovering) to the 20's. And then a foot or two of snow is a possible evening event! I can't wait...
I guess since most of my life has been spent in climates with a very distinct winter season, connecting with nature during the winter has never been something I think about...it's just something that is "there". If that makes sense? I'm not that fond of the cold, but I love snow, I love walking in the snow when it's all quiet and the moon comes out and everything turns a little blue and shimmery....mmm...
The house I grew up in is in the middle of nowhere so there wasn't a lot of light pollution and we heated with wood so it was pretty chilly upstairs (I remember waking up with snow on my bed, and the bedside water was ALWAYs frozen in the morning)...so we were connected to the realities of he season no matter what. The good and the bad. It gave me a good perspective on winter holidays I think...if you look back at earlier ways of living and what people had available come the end of December/early January you can see just how important having some sort of social gathering would be.
And how much faith and trust people were showing by celebrating. It's dark, it's cold, the fresh food is gone and the stored food might be starting to look a little light for the amount of time you know is still ahead of you before spring. Livestock might be getting sick, people might be getting sick...it's a really really hard time of year in certain climates when you take electricity and "modern items" out of the picture.
So just the fact that people came together and shared food and warmth and company and trusted that the sun was coming back and the spring would come and people could play a role in that...well...it's a pretty powerful season.
Which kind of plays into not liking the cold weather...I don't think our ancestors really "liked" the cold weather either! Winter rituals and practices all seem to be forward looking (bringing back the sun, appeasing the winter spirits to grant prosperity and health during the lean season, giving gifts to support the community and "force" people to remain within the social network of the community, etc).
But now I'm rambling...I want snow!