Sunday, February 5, 2012

Winter Snow - Where Are You?

Here we are in the month of February, the middle of winter, and unlike this picture there is no snow on the ground.

One of the main reasons Raven loves winter is because of the snow, and for all of those who love snow it hasn't been a great winter.  For those who are happy there is no snow, it's been a great winter.  Jehovah is so good, he pleases everyone.

It's true, we did have a snow storm in October, but it's not the same. It was in the beginning of the fall season.  Totally unexpected.  We did have some snow fall not long ago this winter season, but honestly the next day it was in the mid-50's and it quickly melted away.  We have had some cold raw windy days reminiscent of a real winter. Without the snow it's actually colder, or at least feels that way.

I have a theory for some years now, that if the beginning of the fall season starts out unseasonably cold, it seems we will have a warmer winter with little or no snow.  So far, it appears to be the case unfortunately so.

There still may be hope though.  February 2nd, Ground Hog Day, the ground hog saw his shadow, which means there will be 6 more weeks of winter.  Of course he saw his shadow because the sun was out.  If it was cloudy that day he would not have seen his shadow.
I was curious about how Ground Hog Day got started.  Here is what I found.

Groundhog Day is celebrated every year on February 2nd. The official groundhog lives in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. His name is Punxsutawney Phil. According to legend, if Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow (the day is bright and sunny), there will be six more weeks of winter weather. If he does not see his shadow (the day is overcast), there will be an early spring.

The celebration of Groundhog Day began with Pennsylvania's earliest settlers. It stemmed from a combination of religious beliefs and facts associated with hibernating animals. They brought with them the legend of Candlemas Day.

If Candlemas be fair and bright,
Come, Winter, have another flight;
If Candlemas brings clouds and rain,
Go Winter, and come not again.

So Ground Hog Day is also called Candlemas Day.  What is that?  

February 2nd is Candlemas Day( The Christian Festival of Lights)  The Ancient Festival marks the midpoint of winter halfway between the shortest day and the spring equinox.  In olden times many people use to say that the Christmas season lasted for 40 days - until the second day of February.

It was the day of the year when all the candles that were to be used in the church during the coming year, were brought into the church and a blessing was said over them - so it was the Festival Day (or 'mass') of the candles.

Candles were important in those days not only because there was no electric lights, but people thought they gave protection against plague and illness and famine.  For nominal Christians it was a reminder of Jesus coming to earth.  Before he came everyone was 'in the dark' so to speak.  Jesus coming to earth with his message was like a guiding light to them in the darkness.  Jesus is called the light of the world - and candles are lit during church services to remind them of this.
With all this said, what hope is there for us to get a good snowstorm?  Maybe if we all do a snow dance that might work.  Perhaps we may get a clue from some weather lore and traditions.

Here are a few.

If Candlemas be fair and clear,  there'll be two winters in the year.

It is said that if the weather is fine and frosty at the close of January and the beginning of February,
There is more winter ahead than behind.

When the cat lies in the sun in February
She will creep behind the stove in March.

Of all the months of the year
Curse a fair February.

If it thunders in February,
It will frost in April.

If February give much snow,
A fine summer it doth fore show.

I keep checking the weather report, and I see no snow in the near future for us, so in the meantime we can dream about it and see it in pictures.

This is Raven - as the crow flies


  1. As always, I learned something. I am a little concerned though about "If February give much snow, A fine summer it doth fore show." Does that mean if we don't get any snow in February, we are not going to have a good summer?!?!? We are already having a bad winter. I hope we don't have a bad summer too!

  2. I am concerned as well. Our only hope is that with folk lore and traditions they are wrong. At this point all we can say is, maybe and maybe not, which is not saying much. So just in case the folk lore is right, lets hope for a great big snow storm in February, before you leave for vacation!!!