The Winter Solstice: Welcome Winter

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Since becoming a Mom, paying attention to and celebrating the change of seasons has been important to me. Initially, this began as having little celebrations on (or close to) the first day of the season. The little celebrations were usually a “Hodges Happy Hour”, with a special story about the new season and maybe a themed snack.  
 
The Winter Solstice, the first ‘official’ day of winter, is the day in which the sun rises the latest and sets the earliest it will all year. It is the day with the longest stretch of darkness. For weeks, the sunlight has been decreasing little by little, and tomorrow, the sunlight will last longer, little by little, each day. And so, while the calendar says that this year, Winter begins on Thursday, December 21, I think a glance at nature shows us that Winter has been arriving for weeks, as Autumn has been slipping away.  
 
 
Similarly, I think the observance of seasons changing can be so much more than a celebration over happy hour. The observance of the season can shape the ways our rhythms and lives ebb and flow with the shifting seasons.  
 
If your life is anything like mine, the last few weeks have been busy, with Christmas upon us and New Years Eve coming, we are almost to the finish line of “The Holiday Season”.  
 
I wonder if as the “Holiday Season” winds down, it could be a good time to make space to ask yourself, what ‘Wintering” could look like for you this season.  
 
In her book, Wintering: The Power of Rest and Retreat in Difficult Times, Katherine May writes,
 
“Plants and animals don’t fight the winter; they don’t pretend it’s not happening and attempt to carry on living the same lives that they lived in the summer. They prepare. They adapt, They perform extraordinary acts of metamorphosis to get the through. Winter is a time of withdrawing from the world, maximising scant resources, carrying out acts of brutal efficiency and vanishing from sight; but that’s where the transformation occurs.  Winter is not the death of the life cycle, but it’s crucible.”
 

I wonder what it would look like to see winter as a time when how you spend our time and energy shifts towards a slower pace.  

 
Consider asking what you may need to withdraw from in the coming months to make the most of the energy you have?
 
What may your family members or whole family need to take a break from to conserve energy?
 
What ways you could automate your life and cultivate efficiency over the coming weeks and months?
an open book resting on a blanket on the couch next to a tray with yarn and tea
Here are a few books to consider if you desire to make space for the quiet of winter:
 
 
 
 
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Rachel Hodges
Rachel is originally from the Chicagoland area, but has grown deep Saint Louis roots over the last fifteen years. She married her high school sweetheart and they live in the Metro East with their three children and spunky puppy. Rachel is the kind of Mom who loves watching her kids grow and learn new things, and also wishes time would slow down a bit. Rachel and her husband love to travel together, dream together, and enjoy time with friends and family. Rachel loves getting lost in a story and is always up for a book or podcast recommendation. She loves time outside, good questions, long conversations, and a good theme to plan a party or meal around. Rachel works as a Child, Adolescent and Family Therapist who provides counseling, parent coaching and equipping. She loves helping parents strengthen their relationships with their children, and helping parents understand their children through a developmental lens. Rachel believes we were all meant to be heard, feel known and be absolutely delighted in.

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