You may recall I recently wrote about Jill Wellington, the Michigan photographer whose photos I often use in my blog posts. Jill has been learning macro photography on her iPhone and posting pictures of water droplets and snowflakes on Facebook. Above is one of a series of photos of snowflakes that landed on Jill’s outdoor grill.
I commented on how beautiful, unique and delicate those snowflakes were, and how they all stick together to make a snow event like we have today. Jill lives 120 miles north of me, so she likely will see double the snow that we are having. While she embraces these snowy days, I am always content to enjoy Winter through Jill’s eyes and the lens of her camera or iPhone … or, so I thought until this morning.
While I was outside shoveling, I got to thinking about those dainty snowflakes and decided that it is tenacity that keeps those fragile flakes from simply melting into thin air, and instead banding together to create measurable snow. They are kind of like those little acorns that held their own and grew up to be big oak trees. So, I decided I was going to write a post about those tenacious snowflakes, and the snow, and get some photos while I was at it.
What a difference a day makes. Yesterday at exactly the same time I was watching the eagles soaring and today it was the snow that was flying. Saturday’s 4-degree wind chill was brutal and now just a memory, because today, at 9:00 a.m. it was about 40 degrees as you see in the below picture.
The freshly fallen snow was beautiful and there was no one outside but me. Down the street was a snowy vista on this silent Sunday morn, as not a single car went by, and any noises from the cross street or main drag seemed muffled by the snow. You could just feel the tranquility in the air. I disturbed that beautiful snow and the peaceful morn once I started shoveling. The rhythmic sound of the shovel blade hitting the cement was the only discernible noise and it did interrupt the tranquility. The flurries were coming fast and furiously and soon the driveway was covered once again by the time I finished shoveling.
I decided today, instead of grumbling about the snow, I’d embrace it, like Jill does, so I went inside to fetch my camera. I had to change into another coat and hat as the snow on my clothes was dripping everywhere.
These photos were taken after the initial snowfall. Thankfully we did not get walloped with the 3-6 inches originally predicted, but snow showers are coming tonight, and a couple more inches of snow are slated for Monday and Tuesday overnight as well.
I was admiring the view in my neighbor’s yard and snapped this picture.
Then something stirred slightly, so I zoomed in to see these four sparrows plopped on top of my neighbor’s weeping mulberry tree. I was fairly close to them and they didn’t budge. Perhaps they were looking for grub, or lost one of their brethren in the snowy landscape.
The backyard was awash in white. The dark bag on my log cabin bird feeder, which helps keep the wood from weathering over the Winter, certainly looked out of place in the snowy yard. The clematis is dormant, and not climbing up the trellis, clinging with its creeping tendrils until the vine curls around the front porch of the log cabin. Years ago a friend built the log cabin feeder and mounted it on a pole made of PVC pipe. He guaranteed me the squirrels could not scramble up the pole because it was slippery, and he even staked it in the middle of the yard. But, the determined squirrels would take a flying leap from the chain-link fence and land on the roof of the feeder, open up the hinged door to access the food, then gorge themselves silly on birdseed. We tried mixing a special red pepper in the birdseed to deter the squirrels, but they continued to attack the feeder with a vengeance, so I vacuumed it out and it is just ornamental now.
Gazing around the backyard at the sleeping roses and clematises I have there, I know those flowers are tenacious and will be back come Spring … they are like Timex watches that take a lickin’ and keep on tickin’.
My neighbor’s trumpet vine spills over the fence all Summer, with vibrant orangy-red blooms dripping everywhere and today its woody stems are blanketed in snow.
An empty chair awaits a colorful planter come May. It sits next to a snow-laden magnolia bush where, once Spring arrives, the Mama robin will build her nest and raise her young, and I will peek in between the leaves to check them out from time to time.
Jill’s dainty snowflakes and my trip outside reminded me of the saying:
“A snowflake is one of God’s most fragile creations, but look what they can do when they stick together!” ~ Author Unknown
[Image of snowflakes by Jill Wellington]