With but two days to go till the new month begins, and without further ado, here for your consideration, are some Themes and Plans for February ...
- low, gray, cottony skies
- more and more (and maybe more!) snow
- morning black ice - use caution!
- sap starts to run during mild spells
- Full Snow Moon (22)
- Full Lunar Eclipse! (20)
- seeds begun indoors
- the trees in their bare winter glory
- spring birdsong begins for some species
- snowdrops poking through the snow
- birdfeeder counts across the country
- African violets in a warm sunny window
- icicles hanging (and melting) from the roof
- slowly but surely, lengthening days
- mole tunnels in the soft exposed earth
- skunks emerge from hibernation to choose thieir mate
- red foxes also begin their courting
- "If Candlemas be fair and bright, Winter will have another flight; But if Candlemas be clouds and rain, Winter is gone and will not come again."
- humble winter roots
- citrus still in season
- shepherd(ess) pie for St. Brigid's Day
- pancakes (or paczki) on Shrove (or Fat) Tuesday
- "Fishstick Fridays"
- hot homey casseroles
- homemade crusty breads
- fondue on a fun frosty night
- baked potatoes with all the toppings!
- chocolate, of course - unless you gave it up for Lent!
- homemade coffee drinks
- cherry cake for Washington's birthday
- a jelly roll on Lincoln's birthday
- hot chicken soup for cold and flu season
- herbal teas with honey
- tropical smoothies
- hot chocolate with freshly whipped cream
- St. Brigid of Ireland (1)
- Candlemas/The Presentation of the Lord (2)
- St. Blase (3)
- St. Agatha (5)
- Shrove Tuesday (5)
- Ash Wednesday (6)
- Lent Begins (6)
- Holy Twins: Scholastica (10) and Benedict (11)
- Our Lady of Lourdes (11)
- St. Valentine (14)
- Blessed Fra Angelico (18)
- The Chair of St. Peter (22)
- Sunday Gospels:
- Matthew 5: 1-12a
- Matthew 4: 1-11
- Matthew 17: 1-9
- John 4:5-15, 19b-26, 39a, 40-42
Home & Garden:
- remove snow and ice from roof
- declutter ahead of Easter cleaning
- purchase Valentines (or any last minute materials)
- pick up seeds for spring garden; file in index card box
- order summer flowering bulbs
- take an inventory of garden tools and equipment
- prune where needed
- stock up on bird feeding supplies
- launder all throw blankets
- hang our American flag for Presidents' Day
- inventory medicine chest
- schedule veterinary appointments
- American Music Month
- Black History Month
- National Bird Feeding Month
- Potato Lover's Month
- National Heart Month
- National Cherry Month
- Great American Pie Month
- Groundhog Day (2)
- Focus on Feeders Weekend (2-3)
- Superbowl (3)
- Super Tuesday (5)
- Weather Forecaster's Day (5)
- Fat Tuesday/Mardi Gras (5)
- Primrose Day (5)
- Chinese New Year (7)
- Year of the Rat
- Abraham Lincoln's Birthday (12)
- Valentine's Day (14)
- Spiderwick comes out (14)
- Great Backyard Bird Count (15-18)
- Daytona 500 (17)
- National Cafe au Lait Day (17)
- President's Day (18)
- Washington's Birthday (22)
- International Polar Bear Day (27)
- Leap Day (29)
- Brigid's Cloak: An Ancient Irish Story
- Groundhog Day!
- How Groundhog's Garden Grew
- Groundhog Stays Up Late
- Artist to Artist
- Lanterns and Firecrackers: A Chinese New Year Story
- Happy New Year!
- The Holy Twins: Benedict and Scholastica
- Abraham Lincoln
- Saint Valentine
- Love Is ...
- All for Love
- The Best Thing About Valentines
- The Very Special Valentine
- Franklin's Valentines
- George Washington
- George Washington's Breakfast
- Getting to Know the World's Greatest Composers:
Field Trip Ideas:
- Go cross-country skiing or snow-shoeing at a local farm.
- Visit the Museum of Fine Arts.
- Meet with a meteorologist.
- Meet friends for ice skating at the pond (or the rink).
- Take a trip into Chinatown.
Crafts & Activities:
- Play shadow tag.
- Make silhouettes.
- Make shadow puppets.
- Listen to American composers.
- Anti-cabin fever project: an idea jar
- Lincoln logs on Feb. 12th
- Spend an afternoon making Valentines.
- Make lollipops to hand out on Valentines Day.
- Commence Lenten activities.
- Have a Valentines tea with friends.
- Watch Ratatouille in honor of The Year of the Rat.
- Order Chinese for supper on Feb. 7th.
- Build a bluebird house in hopes this is the year.
Well, thanks for joining me on this rather long journey through the shortest month of the year! The year is a wonderful thing ~ there's always something to marvel over or celebrate, or even just to smile about. And while time does indeed fly by, all these lovely things return to us year after year. :)
Enjoy this day, my friends!
When skies are low
and days are dark
and frost bites
like a hungry shark,
when mufflers muffle
ears and nose,
and puffy sparrows
huddle close ~
how nice to know
is something purely