Winter in Maine

What is there do in winter in Maine?

In truth, there are many people who enjoy Maine summers, but disappear indoors during the winters, or even abandon the state entirely, most often to Florida! Many local businesses close for the winter, because there simply aren’t enough people out-and-about to make it worthwhile. But this doesn’t change our own rhythm of life on the homestead very much, and winter in Maine, for us at least, is full of things to do!

The winter sky in Maine is just as beautiful as the summer sky…As an added bonus, sunrise comes later and is much easier for our family to see!

When all of the outside projects on the homestead fall under the lull of winter weather, we have a chance to work on some indoor projects, and the kids have plenty of school to occupy their days…But more than that, winter in Maine is about more than just holing up inside and waiting for spring!

The kids, having somewhat grown up in Maine now, have a different definition of winter cold, and our little coastal winters are kind of a funny mix, anyway…

So if it’s not snowing outside, it’s still shorts weather! I’m pretty sure they would wear their flip-flops if I hadn’t packed them away for the season. Still, it’s a great time to take sketchpads outside and look for inspiring wildlife. In the winter, we look forward to seeing the snow-shoe hares and ruffed grouse that become somewhat-more-easily visible when all the branches are bare.

And, at the same time, winter is a wonderful time to invite our little forest friends, (at least the more social ones), to come and visit us at the house, momentarily setting aside that prevailing elusiveness that guides most of the days of their lives upon this earth.

And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth, and upon every fowl of the air, upon all that moveth upon the earth, and upon all the fishes of the sea; into your hand are they delivered.

(Genesis 9:2, KJV)

Of course, we really look forward to those unique opportunities that are most distinctive to winter ~ all things to do with snow and ice and the wonders of a whole world freezing over for a short while!

Coffee walks in the winter are just as much fun as coffee walks in the summer…The world is white and ever-changing, ice forming and snow melting, streams freezing and thawing, sun shining and clouds rolling…Always something new to see, and all you have to add are a coat, hat and boots!

Winter offers many beautiful opportunities for coffee walks…
…especially when you get to enjoy warming back up by the fire afterwards!

Hast thou entered into the treasures of the snow?…

(Job 38:22, KJV)

Winter is a great time for snow-flake study, and one of our favorite references is The Snowflake: Winter’s Frozen Artistry. It’s a beautiful collection of snowflake crystal photography, in all of the wonder of its no-two-are-alike variety, along with the stories of how these fantastic, abundant, often-overlooked creations form and grow and grace our lives with beauty!

So far this year, warm, wet winter weather has yielded little snow, and that snow has been full of only tiny needles and balls…
…with very few of the traditional six-sided crystals, but there is time yet for colder days and more varied wonders of God’s breath!

How often do we fail to see the snowflake for the shoveling? Yet not one of these has fallen to the ground without our Father’s knowledge!

Snowflakes are a wonderful vehicle through which to contemplate God…In their natural form, they demonstrate the infinite character of our Creator, no two having ever been found just alike…They remind us of the depths of the wisdom of the only One Who fully comprehends the entire spectrum of variables of temperature and air pressure and wind current that form each flake throughout the course of its journey…They remind us to contemplate the wonder of the fact that God has actual heavenly storehouses out of which He dispenses these little beauties, turning our eyes, once more, to things above…And they remind us that our God is always near-at-hand, because these snowflakes are born along upon His very breath!

By the breath of God frost is given…

(Job 37:10, KJV)

Truly, the winter world is full of wonder!

~ winter fun activities ~

And snowy forests and cold days are full of fun things to do!

A little food coloring, a few balloons, a little water…Simply fill a balloon with colored water, set it outside to freeze, usually overnight, maybe for a couple of days…Then pop the balloon and you’ll have a colored ice-orb to play with!

Or, take your summertime-bubbles outside on a cold day, and enjoy all the wonder of freezing bubbles! Winter bubbles are an adventure all their own, deserving of their very own post, which you can check out here!

Cold days also mean that all of the little seasonal pools in the forest undergo a magical transformation…

“From the breath of God ice is made, And the expanse of the waters is frozen…”

(Job 37:10, KJV)

…and that means skating! A couple of sticks and log-slices and you even have an impromptu game of semi-hockey!

But when the snow flies, the first order of business is always snow-balls and igloos!

…a sure sign of winter…a pair of legs sticking out of an igloo!

This is followed closely by a walk out to the stream at the earliest opportunity, where a little hill makes a perfect otter-run.

And walks in the forest turn into adventures in tree-avalanches!

Quiet walks in the forest are for grown-ups…
everybody gets snowy…
Kids want tree-avalanches!…ummm, can I get some help here?
…but did you see how snowy HE got?!
Big brother to the rescue!
He even has snow on his eyebrows!

The kids shake nearly every tree in the forest. But for the really big trees, it’s time to call in Daddy!

We really don’t often find ourselves at a loss for something to do in this most interesting place where the Lord has placed us. Truly, if you only like Maine in the summer, you are missing out!

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven…

Ecclesiastes 3:1, KJV

by Sydney Michalski

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