Happy New Year!

by Danielle Charles

I just returned home from visiting family back in the Michigan motherland – a place of sand dunes, majestic white pines and the blue expanse of lake that is so dear to my heart.  I’m still a bit tired to write much, but I had to stop by and wish you all the happiest of New Years!

And, I had to share with you this beautiful witch hazel I came across on a walk while there, just beginning to flower. It is such an inspiration to me that in the darkest and coldest time of the year, this wonderful tree chooses to flower in such an explosion of beauty (and the picture depicts just the beginning of the bloom – soon, the flowers will truly explode, their vibrant yellow blossoms standing in stark and beautiful contrast to the white of the winter forest).   It was a treasure to come upon, and seemed like an auspicious omen for the year ahead.

And so, I am hoping that for us all, the new year will be filled with all the wonder and magic of a witch hazel flowering spectacularly in the middle of a silent, white and slumbering wood.