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Sunday, 22 December 2019

Winter Solstice

The Wheel continues to turn - three hours ago our little rock reached the point of apogee in her orbit around the Sun, and is now slowly working her way back.  However, thanks to the intricacies of astrophysics the Earth is actually closest (in miles) to the Sun on 5th January 2020.  Such timing would fit so nicely into the tradition of 12th Night, if that concept was not a construct of modern Christianity . . . I think the rhythms of planetary orbits were established long before that 😊

But the light does return, slowly at first - 90 seconds to 2 minutes each day in January, and about 2½ minutes more in February.  Today my latitude receives only 7 hours 11 minutes of daylight, but by the end of January that has increased to 8 hours and 41 minutes.


I think we could all do with some sunshine after the last few months.



Accepting that this is a time of hibernation, of slowing down and resting, of regrouping and thinking, has been a good thing to do.  Fighting the heaviness of this time of year just does not work, hunkering down does.

After the political turmoil and uncertainty of the last few months, who knows what next year will bring?  The fires in Australia are truly catastrophic and the damage to wildlife and the ecology of the Blue Mountains will take generations to heal.  Closer to home, last night there were nearly 100 flood warnings in place across the country, and despite dreadfully high winds and much rain over the last week for once we do not seem to be badly affected.  Small consolation for those who are.

We have heating and the house feels lovely.

Although we are not doing much 'different' from usual, the fridge and freezer are well stocked.

I am now swimming a couple of times a week and it is becoming a transformative (and very happy) experience.  I never expected that 😲

There is much clearing up, clearing out, and a slim chance that we might move into the next decade without a lot of the clutter and baggage from the current one.

Lots to give Solstice thanks for.


image from Pinterest, no copyright attribution available


You can read an excellent (brief) explanation of Perihelion here, which I think is fascinating, but I'm strange like that πŸ˜‰ and I find all sorts of odd things interesting.






30 comments:

  1. The last year has proved tulmutuous and I do hope the next arrives with a feeling of calm.
    Solstice blessings to you and yours, Jayne. X

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  2. Well I read the link but still don't understand all those long words!! So I'll have to just go with the flow of the seasons and enjoy the days lengthening.
    Have a lovely day.

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    1. {{smile}} I'll let you into a secret Sue, I don't always understand the short words either. xx

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  3. Winter Solstice blessings dear sweet soul. Keep connecting with mother earth and looking after yourself. Sending bear hugs to envelope you and also watching for the sun's return xxx

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    1. My dear sweet powerful witch, thank you - the sun is just breaking through the clouds and I've been "doing a Daisy", house shorthand for sitting facing the sun with my eyes closed 🌞

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  4. Fascinating and thoughtful. I had never heard of Perihelion - but I do know there's nothing modern about 12th night, it used to be quite a feast. Everything's relative, though! Have a lovely Christmas.

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    1. Hi Mike, thanks for popping in. I know '12th night' was a big feast in Tudor times, and I believe it's still celebrated as such in southern Spain and Portugal.

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  5. Our world is changing, and we watch in horror at the fire, floods and sadly the wars across our planet and here in our own country, mankind does not learn from mistakes quick enough, those in power do not change, sadly the rest of us watch, we try to change things, small voices, but we can shout loud together. We too are enjoying a quiet few days, peace at home is a wionderful thing, Merry Christmas, enjoy the season.

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    1. Amen to that Marlene, hope you are having a lovely family Christmas.

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  6. Dear Jayne
    I always feel a little more positive after the winter solstice. Spring will come and the extra light is always a bonus. Here's hoping 2020 will be a better year for us all.
    Best wishes
    Ellie

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    1. I agree Ellie. New decade, positive attitude and all that :-)

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  7. We will not think about my whole 'wrapping situation' (which has not had any progress made) NOR will we discuss the fact that i have hummed/droned 'rum-pum-pum-pum' with misters Crosby and Bowie for days now (thanks, I guess ... today I plan to dig out something else like Mannheim Steamroller at full volume)- we will just be glad that this silly rock is slowly turning toward brighter days and less gloom- hopefully the rock's inhabitants will begin to act in a more concerned and compassionate way to each other and to this rock we live on-
    activities around the holidays continue to accelerate here ... the family 'littles' (we have quite a few g'children who are just the right age for Santa to delight) are absolutely jumping out of their skin with excitement, so it's easy to smile in their presence ... I'll be surrounded by much holiday cheer-
    Here's to 2020 though ... it is going to bring changes and adventures for all of us- I wish you and yours all joy and contentment during these final days of this year ... and happiness to come with the new one-
    Fondest wishes as always-
    Barb

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    1. Hi Barb, I hope your wrapping was accomplished and that deep down inside you actually enjoyed all the 'rum-pum-pum-pum'.
      Here's to 2020 for us both. xx

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  8. What fascinates me is, "Approximately every 100,000 years, Earth's orbital path changes from being nearly circular to elliptical."..... Wow! Don't understand, but it still fascinates me.

    Becoming happy for the idea of hibernation and enjoying the coziness of Winter, helped me much, also. Especially in the Deep Winter of Jan., and Feb. When the Holiday Festivities are over. And the winter seems to draggggggg.

    I often wonder why... Those people who have all those Holiday Parties, at Yule/Christmas/New Years Time.... Don't lighten up, in that short window... And have some of the parties, in Jan. and Feb.? When cheer is scarcer, than in December...? But we don't do or go to such... So it's not my business. -grin-

    Hope your Eve of Yule/Winter Solstice was quiet and lovely.

    I got to worrying about "The World," the other day. And then I came to my senses. I can't do _anything_ about any of it!!!! So why waste my time, with worry??????

    Gentle hugs...

    πŸŽ„πŸŒ²πŸŽΌπŸŒ²πŸŽ„

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    1. Thanks Wisp, I hope Christmas has been peaceful and happy for you.

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  9. I'm happy to know that there'll be more daylight now too. There is so much wrong in the world that we must make the effort to look for and see the good that is around us, and celebrate it. Merry Christmas

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    1. You're right m'dear. And at 90 seconds a day we've already gained six minutes! πŸ˜ƒ

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  10. Solstice blessings to you. I love this time of resting, as I love all the seasons for what they give to us. I don't think I could live in a part of the world where there were not four distinct seasons. I do hope that the coming year is a slightly better one for you x

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    1. Thanks Mum. Yes you are right, we might complain about the changing seasons but it gives us such contrast and opportunities to do things differently.

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  11. We do seem to have been hunkering down for quite a while now though. I think it's time to stop

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    1. Thanks Sue. Hope you and Martyn have had a good Christmas.

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  12. I'm hoping for some sunny days soon, we've had so much rain over the past couple of months, surely we're due some dry ones soon!

    Merry Christmas! :)

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  13. I, for one, am always pleased to see the winter solstice, that extra little bit of light each day makes all the difference. I know January and February are usually cold months but there are already shoots poking through the soil so spring can't be all that far away. Wishing you a merry Christmas and all the very best for 2020.

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    1. Thanks Jo. We already have the earliest daffodils popping up and if I go and have a look I expect there will be some snowdrop growth to find.

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  14. I love reading your solstice post, as you seem so knowledgeable about these things. Glad you are enjoying the swimming. Yes are fires are horrendous & we've been covered in a lot of smoke here, even though the worst are in N.S.W. The Blue Mountains are one of the places I visited regularly as a child, it is sad to see it all black & charred, but the loss of houses in these fires is unbelievable. I love your top photo............. Sorry I'm behind on reading, but still have tech issues. Take care & huggles.

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    1. Thank you Susan. Hope you and yours continue to stay safe, and that you and Keith have had a good Christmas.

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