Having spent the first thirty years of my life living on the California coast I don’t think I can ever stop seeing a New England snowfall as a pure and simple miracle! Even after all these years on the island. Sometimes I think maybe this year it won’t happen, but then it always does! This view from our kitchen window is a wonderful, miraculous thing to wake up to. It makes cinnamon toast and hot tea taste even better!
Our first snowstorm this season came late, not until January. But we were ready, plenty of wood piled in the back hall, Joe had put the snow shovel in the pantry so he wouldn’t have to dig a path to the barn with his hands!
It started innocently, a few flakes came sifting down, but soon, with an assist from a sharp wind swooping off the harbor, every rooftop, picket fence, tree limb, and porch roof was edged, then blanketed, in white. A wall of gray mist blocked out the sky and hung over the shore blurring the line between land and sea . . . pure white snowflakes poured down from every direction, swirling off the roof of the barn, a ticker-tape parade in celebration of nature. ♥
The views from inside the house make me feel lucky to be alive . . . this one is from the living room . . . it’s a Christmas card!
Looking out the kitchen window toward the barn . . . the feeders were filled with chickadees, wrens, nuthatches, and cardinals, tiny feathered things, brave souls, hungry in the snow, keeping warm by doing lots of eating — much the same as yours truly.
It’s a decorator’s dream, white on white, polka dots (very fashionable!), with smidgens of black trim thrown in for graphic contrast! Joe and I decided to go for a ride and check out the island; we brought back lots of photos, so now it’s your turn to go for a ride! I can barely wait till you see the ferry docking!! While Joe cleaned off the windshield and heated the van, I checked out the garden . . . ♦ ♦ ♦
We’re only growing snow flowers today! But it’s still a “lovely garden.” ♥
If you look closely at the tree, you’ll see a little bit of inspiration, my favorite bird house. Before I moved to Martha’s Vineyard I didn’t realize that snow gathers on twigs as tiny and narrow as a needle; the thinnest ledge on the picket fence, the tiniest leaf, is brimmed in snow.
Cozy in sweater layers, topped with fleece-lined jackets, heavy socks and boots, leather gloves, wool hats and scarves, we head out to explore — if we fall down we probably won’t be able to get up, we are so layered and fat now, like the kid in the snowsuit in Christmas Story — Joe calls what we’re doing an “airing” as in, do you need an airing? Yes, I do!!
But you need musica to do this, if Martha’s Vineyard had a voice, this is exactly what it would sound like . . . and never more beautiful than on a snow day.
Down our street we go, cutting through the mist to Main Street . . . and a drive out to West Chop . . .
♥ ♥ ♥
Some of you are probably starting to recognize the places in my photos — remember the photo I put up of the West Chop Lighthouse under the full moon? Here it is in the snow . . . you can barely tell where the land ends and the water begins!
A beautiful long fence collects snow . . .
I visited this tiny graveyard on my first trip to the island. It was fall; the leaves were coming down in crimson and orange; I had no choice but to fall in love, wouldn’t you? That will be thirty years ago, March sixth of this year. Like it was yesterday.
Beautiful houses are even more beautiful in the snow.
Lines get blurred with the blowing snow and wind off the sound on our left. Can you imagine being a whaling captain in the 1800’s in this weather? It’s easy to do that around here!
Another cozy little house in the snow…
Joe had to get out and play with the windshield wipers. (Any excuse to get out and play!) We wandered around a bit more out there and then fishtailed and slid our way back into town . . .
Past the darling houses . . .
to the harbor . . . the shoreline with the sweet old houses, and this little green boat with the red life saver. But then the real fun started, because the ferry came in . . . so we ran over to watch it dock . . .
It’s exciting when the boat comes and goes, no matter what time of year, but it’s extra-special in the winter — there are few tourists; mostly it’s just us and the clanging of chains, the hardworking boat guys (three times their normal size with all the layers they wear); people, bent against the wind, grab at blowing scarves as they climb the ramp to get on board; the line up of trucks and cars send steam twirling up into the cold. Once in a while, the ferry stops running; the harbor freezes and we are all trapped. That’s when it really gets fun! But it takes a lot more than this “little” storm!
We drove around a little more; then Joe dropped me off at the back driveway so I could walk up the long way; I took this picture of the house next door to us — always so pretty in the snow!
And then up to my own back door . . . it’s warm and cozy in there, there are kitties waiting!
I love Gladys Taber; she always says the right thing. And then, Home Sweet Home . . . where we found this . . .
. . . for the first time, they shared the back of the sofa! We made a fire
. . . and watched a wonderful old English movie with Wendy Hiller called, I Know Where I’m Going.
I caramelized some onions and put an Onion Pudding (Look in “Home Cooking” for the recipe!) in the oven — and continued to watch the storm . . .
. . . the garden from our upstairs window
Life goes on, no matter the weather — I loved seeing these people trudging along with their umbrella. I never knew you used an umbrella in the snow, but sometimes it comes down so hard you can’t see, you need an umbrella to fend it off.
After the sun went down, we turned the Christmas lights back on the tree in our front yard. We didn’t have snow at Christmas this year, but we knew we would someday, so we left lights on the tree just for this moment! Now we are complete! A celebration of our first snow! You need to come to the island in winter to experience the deep quiet a snowfall brings; I think you’ll love it. ♥