The First Day of Winter

Updated: Dec 16, 2018

Winter has arrived here in the Carolinas. It's only December 9th and already the Charlotte area has received it's first blast of winter. This time last year it was in the low 70s and sunny. 2018, though, has brought many unseasonably colder weeks so it's not entirely surprising that there's the full spectrum of winter weather happening today. Further out towards the mountains of western North Carolina they're getting over a foot of snow. Some places it will be over two feet. I wish I was there to see it pile up in layers of beautiful white, fluff. I'm sorry I'm missing it.

Here at home in Rock Hill, SC, there's really nothing pretty about it. They had called for 1"-3" but it's a total bust. Just some sleet but mostly just cold, gross, bone-aching rain. The roof lines of the houses have collected white streaks of the wintery-icy-stuff and there are some patchy spots in the yard and front garden. But other than that, it's mostly turning into a day to just stay in, drink hot tea and watch a good classic movie. I'll most likely end up watching one of my old favorites - The Inn of The Sixth Happiness (

I'm here on my couch in the living room typing this out, all cozied up in a handmade sweater knitted by the woman I'm named after - Julia (my maternal grandmother's cousin and life long best friend). I never got to meet my grandmother since she passed long before I was born and I was an infant when Julia met me, so I have no memory of her. I find connections to both of them through stories my mom has told me and through little things that have been handed down to me, like this sweater. Its the perfect chunky sweater with plenty of diamond shaped spaces in the design. It's almost as if she made it specifically for me since it's marbled with my signature colors of muted minty sage and dusty blues, matching my eyes perfectly.

Just before I started writing this, I had finally delved into the winter issue of the Bella Grace Magazine. It's my absolute all time favorite magazine. It's not your usual magazine, it's chunky, with deliciously thick pages of real paper - not like the thin glossy ones one would normally find in other magazines. And ohhhhh, it smells divine when you crack it open! Each page is artfully designed with dreamy, simple photos, lists of wonderful ideas to inspire the enjoyment of the little things in life and even places with space for writing prompts. This one includes a list of ideas to enjoy winter to it's fullest - not just endure it. One of the ideas is to make soup for your neighbors. I think that's an absolutely wonderful idea and I plan on making chicken-vegetable soup to put in mason jars tied with ribbons to hand out. I think this version of chicken-vegetable soup will have carrots, peas, onions, celery and garlic - along with the chicken, of course.

Stay cozy and enjoy the snow, if you're fortunate enough to have it!

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