What better way to spend a cold grey skies Yorkshire Monday than to dream of spring with summer to follow on?
In autumn and winter my thoughts turn to spring. With each successive year my ever ageing body yearns more and more for spring and summer, and less and less for late autumn and winter.
By early February although it is still cold where I live, the first few hints of the season to come are making themselves visible.
2016 looks set to be a little different. Severe flooding in Scotland and the north of England over Christmas, and ongoing, has been accompanied with milder than usual temperatures.
This has resulted in various plants budding before their time and late summer flowering plants remaining in bloom.
But this week winter has arrived in my neck of England and these plants could be killed off.
Plants do not have a sophisticated timing mechanism that shows them when to regrow but temperatures can fool them that it is spring.
On this cold Monday it feels fitting to pay homage to the season of birth, spring, even though it is only January 11. As a Pisces woman it is almost my season I guess.
Spring officially begins on March 31 in the UK.
If the weather is being kind it may feel as if it has already begun much earlier; sometimes though we experience bad weather, and even snow, well into March.
That could be the case in 2016 as our seasons continue to become mixed and timelines blur.
Winter 2009/2010 lived up to its reputation with a deluge of snow but that was the last traditional winter here.
In recent years we have had much milder winters and less snow, but 2009/2010 record cold temperatures in the UK brought heavy snow.
Yet in no time at all, this should change
Spring in my part of the world brings the return of Blackbirds; these lovely birds never seem quite so lovely when they waken you early in the morning chirruping away. A family of Blackbirds used to nest in the one large tree, in our small front garden, but sadly this tree had to be chopped down. When flooding struck our city we were one of many households left living in a caravan in their garden for many months. Still the birds appear in our garden looking for worms, searching them out and throwing them, and tons of soil, all over the place so they must have found new accommodation.
One of my favourite things about spring is the appearance of Daffodils
Daffs will soon be cheaply bought for display around the home unless the weird weather ruins flowers. These bright yellow treasures certainly chase winter away; so many of my favourite spring blossoms are yellow.
My Forsythia plant looks dead at the moment, but within a few short weeks, it will begin to show its golden glow again.
January 10, 2016, in my garden-lilac buds though leaves only dropped recently and other flowers lingering on
The pink blossom of flowering Cherry trees will arrive a little later. This beautiful flower lasts briefly. A sharp cold spell with strong winds and it will soon be blown off branches, to resemble snow as it falls to the ground. What a mess it will make but it is worth it.
There are so many attractions with spring
The promise of summer is a feeling of hope lifting your spirits and an end to that sad, heavy-hearted feeling which winter can bring.
My final favourite though is bright blue skies. Those heavy grey skies and dark days become less frequent and a bright blue replaces this dullness. Of course, if the sun is shining and emitting some warming rays also, then all will be right with world.
But it is still only January and spring could be months away; yet these days who knows that for sure.