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Finding the “Firsts”

by Em

Winter has been very different this year. Because of the lack of snowstorms and cold weather where we live it’s hard to remember what month it is. Last week a local meteorologist started his weather teaser with “A mild Thanksgiving is……ugh Thanksgiving??? Valentine’s Day!!!” Usually by this point in winter I have the winter doldrums or even major cabin fever if there’s still a lot of snow on the ground.

Despite the lack of snow and cold this year, I’m still eager for spring. And what always pulls me through in February and March is looking for signs of spring when I’m outside or looking out the window.

In fact I keep a list of nature “firsts” during the entire year!

In late winter it’s things like:

  • First American Robin sighting
  • First crocus blooming
  • First chipmunk sighting (they go into a sort of hibernation during the winter)
  • First bumblebee sighting (the queens emerge and look for a new home)

In summer it’s (apparently bugs!):

  • First mosquito bite
  • First “song” of a cicada (which always makes me think of back-to-school time)
  • First fireflies
a photo of a child looking out the window as snowflakes fall

In fall it’s things like:

  • First killing frost
  • First snowflakes
  • First Dark-eyed Junco (snowbird) sighting

Spotting these little signs brings me hope—especially in the winter. And this exercise also something fun and positive you can easily do when you’re taking a walk, waiting to pick up your kids at their school or gazing out a window. It’s also interesting to see how the dates change from year to year or even decade.

What “firsts” could you look for each season where you live?

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