We are truly experiencing winter as it was when some of us were small. At least there is snow on the ground, and it's been there for a couple of days. Today we did not have the snow that had been forecast; instead we had a day of glorious sunshine.
By the time I had finished playing with some laundry, the sun had already rid the trees of a bit of their snow mantles. Even so, the back yard looked lovely, and if you look closely enough, you'll be able to see a splash of red in the shrub between the birdhouse in the middle and the arbor on the left. That red is one of at least three cardinal couples who live in our yard.
The next one shows off both the amount of snow and our collection of watering cans - all lying on their sides. We really shouldn't keep them outside all the time; we've already lost a couple to rust and old age. But I don't really have a place for them inside, and I like to see them in all weather conditions.
And in case that's simply too much sun and shadow and snow, here's a sign of spring (even though it is indoors right now):
This is our third grafted miniature pussy-willow tree, and it is by far the healthiest one we've had. Look at the number of catkins! They are covered with the yellow pollen right now, and it's the best time to prune the "tree" before the leaves are out. D plans to do that soon and start to shape this tree. He'll have some fun, and we'll both try to keep this one going - water, water, water - that's the key. Another good reason for having it on our kitchen table!