January is a blue month. The woolen skies of November and December lift to reveal a high, ice-blue dome. Our shadows--elongated giants with enormous hands and pin heads--stretch blue across the snow in the low afternoon sun. The blue jays visit the feeder, their usual raucous cries subdued by the cold.
This weekend I finally cleared away the dregs of red-and-green, filed away the Christmas cards, swept up the last of the fir needles to make way for January. In the kitchen I lined up blue glass on the window sill,
spread a blue cloth and made a snowflake bowl (copied from Shivaya Naturals). The silver snowflake candlesticks came from Goodwill (on sale before Christmas).
More blue and white in livingroom, and a new book of fairy tales from the cold north.
(The snowflake bowls drive M crazy, because what do you do with them?)
In the window I hung more snow flakes (how-to at linaloo),
And on the so-called mantle I placed my favorite Frank Lloyd Wright-style candleholders, which have a snowflakey design, and I cut some red dogwood branches to put in the big, scary rock vase (I have to keep it there, out of reach, for fear that it will fall on someone and brain them).
January is for sledding and snow ice cream. For skating (after tomorrow's sleet) and snow plowing. It is a month for popcorn and cocoa and hot melted cheese. It is for walking on the ice along the river, avoiding the spots where the water defies the thermometer and runs black and frigid. January is long underwear and wool sweaters, down coats and knit hats, warm socks and mittens. January says, "Go outside and play; it's a beautiful day," when the sun streams down through the single-digit atmosphere. And January says, "Sit by the fire. Knit. Read a book. Watch a movie in the afternoon when you've had your fill of cold and ice.