The days are notably longer.
The sun is rising earlier and after a very very long period of cold we are getting a break. The temperatures rose to the high 40's today. I bet it reached 50 degrees in town. It feels balmy. We let the fire die out. Since Philip was very sick early last week he was unable to go cut wood so we have been rationing the wood that some firewood fairies dropped off. It is a real break to feel warmth in my bones.
The sheep made their way out of the barn yesterday for the first time in days. The animals are happy to feel the sunshine as well. We still have plenty of snow, but I see sign of earth. Streams of melting snow flow here and there. I think that spring is near, even if it doesn't look like it. I have a feeling we will be hearing from the peepers in a couple of weeks.
Garden season will not begin when I wish it would. The garden is still covered in many inches of snow. I had planned to put in the first planting of peas on Valentine's Day. The best laid plans... The gentleman who gave us a lecture last week on organic gardening methods at the Grower's Academy reminded us that every winter we experience heavy snowfalls may lead to later season, but very productive harvest. So we hope for the harvest and dream of the planting season and watch the snow melt.