|Fluffy Crystals Cling to Evergreens|
|Huskies Romp to the Pond|
|The House Awaits With Warmth|
|The Rusty Blur of a Freight Train|
|Elmira Pond in Winter Blues|
In case you're curious, Happy Lights are full-spectrum light bulbs that are meant to infuse the human body with full rays of the missing sun. In the north, the sun can go AWOL (absent without leave) for days, abandoning it's blue-sky post for places I've never been before--like Yuma, Arizona or Khardga, Egypt. People must be giddy, living in such full sun year round.
Some people suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), also known as "winter blues." While I get sleepier, crave more coffee and bake chocolate chip cookies, I'm never sad in winter. I love the snow even with its cover of clouds. It's the blue-sky-arctic-front winter days I'm happy to have left behind in the Midwest.
My friends in Minnesota have declared the state "colder than Mars." My own "happy light" is just knowing that my valley in northern Idaho is protected by three Rocky Mountain ranges that buffer me from arctic blasts that nail Canada and the nation east and south of me. It's been warmer here than in northern Florida the past few days.
Yet today the sun disappeared. While the rest of the nation shivered, the Pacific Ocean crept over the Cascades and trapped Elmira beneath a gray dome spitting snow that was easily ocean water days ago. Thus the winter-scape on Elmira Pond glows white with fresh fallen snow.
Taking huskies and camera to the far south pasture, I begin snapping white, only to end up with blue photos. The missing sun, domed sky and snow-covered everything creates a blue hue. Snapshots capture pixels of the winter blues that infuse me with joy.
White fluffy crystals of snow gather upon poky needles of evergreen. The camera shows falling snow as fairy-like globes of light floating in air and the landscape deepens into blue. The huskies dash from the pond to the pasture, inspecting every possible mouse hideout in between. A train blasts by, a rusty blur in the blue of snow. The house promises warmth, lights and hot nettle tea while the horse barn stands as silent as the Ponderosa guarding its perimeter. Trucks and cars pass by with chains snow-muffled, driving slow and cautious.
Unchained and infused with winter blues, the huskies and I walk back to the house with snow drops kissing my face the entire way.