Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Vernal equinox 2012

When I was coming out of the Pickford theater on Saturday, I saw these crocuses and sunshine greeting me. I immediately dropped everything and pulled out my camera. At first I wondered about the concentric circles on the walkway, but then I realized they must be stylized raindrops! Perfect for the Pacific Northwest. When I went into the theater, it was blowing hard with horizontal stinging raindrops... I much prefer these.

Now that Daylight Saving Time is behind us, I was wondering when we will actually have the vernal equinox and went on line (of course) to find out. What did I do before search engines? I truly cannot remember, it's now such a part of my life. On the Old Farmer's Almanac website, I found some interesting information.
On the first day of spring -- the vernal equinox -- day and night are each approximately 12 hours long (with the actual time of equal day and night, in the Northern Hemisphere, occurring a few days before the vernal equinox). The sun crosses the celestial equator going northward; it rises exactly due east and sets exactly due west.
This year Spring officially begins on March 20 at 1:14am EDT. Since I am on Pacific Daylight Time, it will occur here three hours earlier, making it (let's see) March 19 at 10:14pm. And if what the Almanac says is true, I expect I can start celebrating Spring any minute now! However, I woke up this morning in the dark and saw more light outside than I expected. It was from snow that fell overnight. We are in a particularly stormy period, with wind, cold, and occasional snowfall. Tonight it might even get below freezing again. I snapped this picture at the bus stop.
These pretty pink flowers (heather?) don't seem to mind the white decoration, which is probably all gone now, several hours later. When I got to my class today, I noticed the numbers were down, probably because of snow on the roads, although it doesn't usually take much for some people to decide not to exercise. Afterwards, though, I know they probably didn't feel as good as I did. I know I'm rubbing it in, but they can take it, since they don't read my blog.

The bus was late again this morning, so I had to really hustle to get to class on time. I passed several other ladies on their way into class, but they drove and didn't need to change, so I charged on past them on my way to the locker room. Made it to class right on time and was already warmed up to boot.

It's funny: it never occurs to me to stay home, since I take the bus and don't have to drive, and it gives me something to look forward to. My sister Norma Jean and I were talking yesterday about the comfort of routine. I love my daily schedule and know that it suits me. She has hers in much the same fashion. Could it be genetic? I know that other people chafe against schedules, but for me it defines my day, and my sister is exactly the same. She told me that several people cannot believe that she prefers to get up and head out the door to go swimming at 6:15am. After all, we're retired now and there's no need to get up at the crack of dawn. I'm happiest when I am able to begin my day with exercise. Yep, it must be genetic!


  1. i used to be an early riser, but these days i squeeze in every extra minute under covers i can. :)

    i like those 'raindrop' swirls on that entrance. makes a nice pattern.

  2. I too like the 'raindrop swirls' except I'm not bright enough to have figured that out on my own.

    We early risers around here. I can't sleep late or I'm in a fog all day.

  3. I love to sleep in. Kitties are not allowed to come upstairs and wake me until after nine.
    Virginia is just starting her spring flowering. It is like a fairyland. Your camera would get a good work out this time of year. PK

  4. i think there are good parts to routine..spring will be here soon...in the 70s and 80s here all week and some beautiful flowers around for sure...

    the house is up by 630 am here...

  5. The older I get, the more I like a schedule, of sorts, or a routine. It somehow seems comforting. I still shake things up a bit now and then, but not nearly as often as I used to. ;)

    I still hold hope for myself, that I will one day want to leave the house very early in the morning to do some physical exercise. I love it when I'm on "vacation," but I can't seem to follow through when I get home. That's the part that I want to change.

    You do inspire me, now if I could just turn that into real action. That's where the hope comes in. :)

  6. Those raindrop sidewalks are perfect! Might as well celebrate it, eh?
    I'm wondering about routine. I'm contemplating starting something that will have me using an alarm clock for the next two years - after not having used one for almost 10 years. I don't know how I'll take to this new routine. Will it be a nuisance or a comfort?

  7. I am an early riser. Whether I go to bed at 10 pm or 1 am, I am always up way before 6 am when David gets up to go to work. I try to get at least 4-5 hrs sleep. Anything more would be a lucky bonus.

    I love your photo of the raindrop swirls. So artistic and pretty!

  8. Today was a crazy weather day, a very March sort of a day around here! Snow, sun, rain, more snow, more rain and sun. And cold!
    I like to get going on projects in the morning, and usually do my exercising in the afternoon. I'm back to sewing again, and stop a little after three to get my time in on the stationary bike, since the out-of-doors is not very hospitable.

  9. Must be genetic--LOL!
    I love both the flower pictures. So odd to see snow there when it is melted here again ...except for the big snowpile. ;)
    I have to admit I have never wished for routine until now. These days I'd love routine. I'd love to be up around dawn and to be asleep around the same time. I keep trying for it. Sometimes it lasts for weeks! And I love it. :)
    Hope you're having a great week. I think I forgot to tell you how much I love the new header. ;)

  10. Routines give us the structure that makes it easy to do stuff. You have a routine for getting to exercise. I find if I keep a rigid routine for exercise it happens. If I drop it for a few days it's hard to get going again. Keep at it . It pays in many ways.

  11. I am really fond of routine as well. It throws me right out, when I break the rhythm. I loved the crocus and the raindrop swirls. Thank you.

  12. I have always been a morning person too. I love having a routine which anchors me and makes me feel secure. It is a rare day that I would sleep past 6. For me, that is sleeping in because I used to get up at 5 to go to work.

    Love the springtime flowers. We have blooming trees already.

  13. Morning:
    Love the photos, interesting "raindrop swirls" round the flowers. We have been enjoying sunshine and temps of 65-70+ last few days and today we are being blasted with freezing rain, rain and snow? Go figure HUH?
    I am the early morning gal, who loves to take Jack for a walk - love that early morning exercise. Its just me but in bed at 9-10 - half the day is gone??

  14. It is going to be over 70 here today!
    And we would normally still be waist deep in snow here. The good news is this Minnesotan had her first outdoor picnic last night. Spring has arrived!

  15. Dear DJan,
    Thank you for sharing those lovely photographs. The first one made me feel warm; the second, chilly!

    And thank you also for saying that schedules define your day. For years, I needed schedules to accomplish my freelance work. Since I've retired, many friends have encouraged me to let go of them. But, like you, I find that they define my day. I need them!


  16. Those flowers look like they've been frosted with confectioner's sugar. Can I say it....oh yes, of course, you know me....I'll say it then...SWEET!!!

    Yep, search engines...how did we ever 'live' without 'em?

    As for Daylight Savings Time, I'm refusing to adjust my clocks within the home...it messes with my bodily system and medication times that I've had difficulties with...just leave the clock at regular time. Not conforming to the government...that's ME!!

    Love the raindrops on the cement tiles. That is quite artful, and beautiful.

  17. The photos are lovely-- I hope the Heather survives the snow.

    When I stopped working nearly 4 years ago I thought I would love not having a daily routine-- which mostly included work and work related activities, but I was shocked to find that having a daily routine is what I missed most. It took me a while to figure my routine out, but I'm most content when I know what and when I'm supposed to do something and have the sense of accomplishment when it's complete.

    xo jj

  18. it's so wonderful to have healthy habits and a good routine

    I love your photos

  19. I think you are so right about routine. Can't remember which of the books you gave me on health - but it said your body loves to have a routine for eating, BMs, sleeping, etc. I believe it!

  20. Great pictures!
    I'm not an early riser, but my day begins with a visit to the gym. You're my inspiration!

  21. Nice pictures, and the raindrops design in the photo are really different. I haven't seen any crocus here yet.

    For so many years I lived on a schedule, a tight one each day. Now that I am no longer working I am enjoying a little less routine. I don't get up at the same time and decide each day what I feel like doing. Today it is sunny and lovely temp outside so I rode my bike to the senior center for lunch and when I got home I started picking up branches in the yard from the strong winds. Tonight is the monthly book club meeting at the library and I am looking forward to that.

  22. There's no doubt that you're in better health for your routine. It works for you and that's what counts.

    The photos are lovely, DJan. I wouldn't have got the raindrop connection .. very cool. And the snowy heather is just gorgeous. I hope they survived.

  23. That designer had a sense of humor with the raindrops! The spring blooms are very pretty..the snow covered ones not so much. I am so not a morning person..but a night owl:)

  24. I love the pattern surrounding the crocuses, what a pretty scene you captured DJan. I'm looking forward to spring so I can throw open the windows and doors and let the fresh air flow through the house. That and I'm really wanting to get my yard in shape.

    Being a nightowl it's not in my nature to get up at the crack of dawn. But in the summer I do like to get things done early before the temps rise. Also on "cat" days I'm up at 5am to get things done before here at home before heading to the shelter for a full day with the cats. Speaking of which that is why I have been absent this week. We did a spay/neuter event on Wednesday and the before and after take a lot of time.

  25. Wow! Those are fabulous photos! I love the crocuses with the sun shining on them. They look so happy. Even the heather looks happy.

    The only thing about Daylight Savings is that there's now a FIVE hour difference between Hawaii and Chicago. Sigh...


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