Winter in North Carolina’s mountains is mighty cold, but there are a lot of fun and cozy things to do. The best activity is enjoying nature. The mountains are totally different than they are in the summer when the trees are lush and green. Instead, the forest curtain is fractured and it’s easier to see the surprisingly blue mountain ranges.
The Blue Ridge Mountains…I understand the name now. Each layer of mountain takes on a different beautiful hue. The views remind me of layered edges of shredded fabric. That description might make more sense in my head.
Much closer than the ragged ranges are colorful berry plants to admire. I like this one because it reminds me of pomegranate seeds, which I love, and also of seasonal, twinkling lights.
There are other beautiful patterns to admire as well. I really enjoyed the ice crystals that formed on top of the pond. They were so delicate that they didn’t last for long. Once they melted, Stella and I became mesmerized by the wind ripples that were forced across the water’s surface.
The weather didn’t stop at being cold and frosty. We also watched the fog roll in across the pond and cloak the house in haze. Spooky! The winter chill and pitch black nights gave us a good reason to take refuge inside with cozier entertainment.
Lighting a decent fire was our most challenging activity. The wood just didn’t want to burn. We tried igniting newspapers, twigs, birch, and cotton. We used matches and even a flint. We eventually resorted to fire starter logs, but even they couldn’t catch our wood on fire. At least they made a nice flame and enough heat to keep things extra toasty. But I hope we never land in a real survival situation because we’d end up smeared with enough soot to look like chimney sweepers, and we’d definitely get black lung.
Frying up some turkey bacon was much more successful.
But the pièce de résistance was clearly our gingerbread house. It was so cute! I love the snow, icicles, candy decorations, scary witch peeking out from behind the tree, cute puppy (that kind of looks like a pig), and happy couple. Or could they be Hansel and Gretel before being cooked? Well, it’s cute anyway. And no, we didn’t eat the house. There were egg whites in that icing!