Tuesday, January 16, 2018

OH, How I love WINTER :)

I know that the title I've chosen will have many of you shaking your heads "no"... and I understand.  However, here in north Idaho, I've learned that winter is here to stay for a large part of the year, and it just helps if you learn to love what is wonderful about it, as it makes the days pass in a more lovely way!  And for me, as someone who sees the beauty around me and wants to capture it with photography, the winter season offers up some of the most beautiful pictures to be taken.

The next morning after our arrival home, the snow was beautiful to see.

My garden in the cold early morning light. 

The sun's rays muted through the heavy cloud cover. 

A walk down to the railroad tracks showed that the trains hadn't been through since the last snowfall. 

Fresh untouched snow... 

Such beautiful light.

Walking through the fresh untouched snow is a delight in itself. 

The ice along the shoreline had begun to freeze over, creating these beautiful wispy shapes.

The light shining on the ice was stunning.

Cold sunshine is beautiful! 
With the coming of the new year, my mailbox has been flooded with seed catalogs of all kinds.
It is fun beginning to prepare and think about spring, seeds, and planting again!

Since my carpal tunnel surgery was successful, I can now cross country ski again!  

The weather hasn't been very cooperative and not the best for cross-country skiing, but still, I
was glad to be out and enjoying the world around me getting just about the best exercise you can get!

The sun came out one glorious afternoon, and dressed the skies in brilliant layers of color.

The railroad tracks had seen some traffic, making walking on them much easier. 

The colors in the skies were magnificent. 

I turned down a side road to see the river, and got to witness the sunset in a beautiful way. 

This picture was so vibrantly beautiful, I sent it into our local newspaper.


It was published the next day on the front page of the newspaper. It truly was a beautiful moment to capture!

This sweet snow princess Miss Riley can't get enough of the snow! It's hard for me to find her still for just a moment to capture a picture, so I was especially pleased to get this picture of her!

Sometimes I take Miss Annie with me on walks.  It is nice walking without a dog on a leash, but we can't do that with her.  I have taught the dogs to sit on the snow berm when a car is approaching, which is what they are doing here. 

I have been walking with ice picks on my boots on these icy roads ... and the views have been spectacular around each
bend and curve of the road. 

A storm was brewing in the west, and brought about 7 inches of new snow.  The night before the storm, the skies put on this show.  The mist from the cooler air met with the brilliance of the skies in a captivating sky thriller! 

The skies down by the river were soft rosy pink when I spotted a chicken hawk up in one of the trees. 

He and I stared at each other for several moments, and I told him I was glad he was down here at the river, and
nowhere near my chickens, even though they are cooped up for the winter. 

The brilliance of the skies was beautiful to see, even as the storm clouds rose in the west, bringing their heavy dump of beautiful snow. 

The day after the snow came, it began to rain... and since it was a rather dreary day, I had an impromptu tea party, just me, myself and I.  It was rather delightful. I dressed up my table with some special goodies. 
My husband had bought a praline for me while we were in Texas, and I saved it for my rainy day, which was today! I lit my favorite candle, also a Texas delight.  This candle is called "Bird of Paradise" made by Circle E candles.  This candle has the most delightful scent of any candle I've ever had. 

I used my teapot that I had found at a thrift store last fall.  The thrift store owner told me that the teapot was very old, but there were no other markings on it to tell us what it was.  I scoured the internet looking for information about this teapot, but could find nothing all this time.  Then, just last week I tried once again, and I found a teapot in the UK which had sold that looked very similar to mine.  I took a chance, and emailed the dealer who sold it and sent pictures of mine.  She was a very kind soul who responded right away to my request and said this, "Your teapot is by Coalport mid Victorian c1860 i would say. Its not overly decorative so may not be desirable by collectors but still nice. It would be worth £40-60. Hope this helps." So it was very nice to now know what kind of teapot I am enjoying, and that it dates back to 1860!  I consider it a fine treasure and joy to own :) 

This 1-second video is just a fun thing I created on Instagram to share a moment of my impromptu tea party.  I've enjoyed being able to share snippets of my life on Instagram.  If you have Instagram, you can look for my screen name "mountaintopspice".  

This year winter has been one of constant change, sometimes rain, sometimes snow, some sun, lots of cloud, lots of ice, and beautiful colors in the skies.  I've enjoyed it all!  Yesterday we had a most beautiful day of brilliant sunshine, and it coincided with plans that we had made before we even knew the weather would be nice.  I'll share with you soon some pictures of our fun outing in the gorgeous sunshine.

Until then, I want to leave you with a special passage of scripture that has blessed me many times.  It is found in a book not often read, but filled with really beautiful imagery.  May the blessings and joy of the Lord be with you today :)

Habbakuk 3: 18-19 
"Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, 
I will joy in the God of my salvation.  
The Lord God is my strength, 
and he will make my feet like hinds feet 
and he will make me to walk upon my high places." 

Edited to add:  A dear friend and blogger shared with me in the comments below that her son who pastors in Fort Collins, CO today also shared his thoughts about this same verse!  Perhaps you would like to read it as well, you may find that post here at Not All Minds that Wander are Lost.  Thanks PomPom for coming back to share this with me! 










64 comments:

  1. Congratulations on your photo getting published! There are so many beautiful ones in this post it's really lovely. Your fur friends are gorgeous, too.
    We're getting snow here in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains as I type. I LOVE SNOW!
    Have a great week!

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    1. Btw, the video isn't playing for me...

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    2. Thank you for letting me know about the video! I've fixed the problem, and you should be able to watch it now! Thank you so much for your visit and for your congratulations :) How exciting that you love snow, and you are getting it there in the Smoky Mountains, that is very exciting! There is just something so amazing about the snow as it falls, I love it so :) Have a blessed rest of the day!

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  2. Now that's a lot of snow. Pretty

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    1. Yes, snow sure is beautiful! Thanks for your visit Sylvia :)

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  3. Wow, such a joy to visit and see the beauty. I loved the teapot and how wonderful to get to know a little more about it.

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    1. Thank you so much for your visit and kind comments. I was quite excited to find out more about the teapot myself :) Blessings to you!

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  4. Just WOW! I live in a similar area, as you well know, although not in the countryside, and I never see the beauty in the snow as you do. I wish I did because these photos are stunning. And one was published too! How wonderful.
    Love the tea party and learning about your teapot. I wish I was better about Instagram. I check it faithfully for several days and then forget about it for awhile. There aren't enough minutes in the day for everything.
    Blessings,
    Betsy

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    1. You are right, there are just not enough minutes in the day to get everything done, I agree! I struggle finding a balance too. I love the snow, although it is a lot of work once it is on the ground. Our snow is melting slowly here too with all the rain and warmer temps we've been getting. Always such a blessing to have a visit from you :) Hugs to you today!

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  5. I am glad you enjoy winter, Marilyn. It is nice to see what could be!

    Your photos are beautiful!

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    1. Thanks Marie, always appreciate your visits :)

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  6. Hi Marilyn! You have captured some lovely views of winter at it's finest. I remember that feeling from when we lived in Spokane. Once the snows came, they stayed. Here in Denver it's not quite so wintery. How fun that your photo made the paper! Yay!

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    1. That's interesting that Denver doesn't get as much snow as we do. In fact, Spokane doesn't get as much as we do either. Many times we get snow and they get rain. I do love the snow though, I'd much rather it snow, than rain! It was exciting that my photo was in the paper :) Hugs to you today!

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  7. Back to share a meditation from Habakkuk from our son Brad (pastor in Ft. Collins)
    https://notallmindsthatwanderarelost.blogspot.com/2018/01/the-often-overlooked-book-of-habakkuk.html

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    1. I've updated my post to share this devotional with others to read as well, thank yo for coming back and sharing this with me! How amazing that we both shared the same verse on the same day... it's not like it is the most popular book or verse in scripture, so I think that the Lord must really want us to pay attention to this verse today. Blessings to you dear friend!

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    2. So nice of you! Thank you, Marilyn!

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  8. Wonderful Winter photos! I like your tea pot; it's definitely a treasure.

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    1. Thank you, indeed I dearly love my new to me teapot :)

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  9. Look at you all famous on the front page! You sure do make winter look good, Marilyn!

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    1. I do so love winter Kim, it really is just so beautiful here, but I can understand how difficult it is for those who don't like the cold. Praying for you my friend!

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  10. Your surrounding area is fabulous in the snow. I love winter too and we just don't get enough snow where we live.

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    1. I like to get outside and enjoy winter, and that does help pass the dreary days for sure. Thank you for your visit! Have a blessed day :)

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  11. You have the very proper attitude for where you live. The photos you've shared are so beautiful. The bonus for not being afraid to get out in it! A candle, cup of tea and a praline...yum and cozy!

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    1. There are winter days that makes it hard to get out, but I do try to get outside every day, and that does help pass the winter days! :)

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  12. I also love winter. Yes,I do complain about the bitter cold, but try to keep that at a minimum, but the snowscapes are gorgeous.Your pictures are so refreshing and beautiful. God has created such a beautiful world in all seasons.Thanks for sharing all this beauty from your part of the world.I read that verse just the other day and was blessed by it then and again now as I read it again.

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  13. I can almost feel the stillness and sharp air on your walks, dear Marilyn! The beauty is incredible and I especially love the photo of the incoming storm. Snow turns everything magical and we just don't get it that often here in western WA, except in high elevations. Your tea party is lovely and it's so amazing that your teapot has survived 160 years! A favorite verse you have shared. Sending hugs and blessings xo Karen

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  14. Oh, how beautiful! I felt like I was right there in those special moments. Your photography is beyond lovely...I am SO happy they chose to publish it for others to see and enjoy!!!! Congratulations!!! I hope it is the beginning of many, many more such accomplishments! The world needs to see your amazing talent. I think it would be so neat if somehow you could start making greeting cards with your photos and sell them...maybe in an Etsy shop or something. Hey, I know what we can do...you take the photos, and I will write the verses! LOL! Seriously, I have been looking for someone to either draw or paint pictures to add to my greeting card verses, but I think real photos would be even better. :) Let me know what you think. So nice to visit with you tonight...and I can't believe how big Miss Riley is now! Wow, she has grown so fast. God bless you, sweet friend. You are such a dear blessing to so many!

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  15. I love all of the blues and purples in the snow, and those colors plus oranges in the winter sky. Absolutely beautiful.

    FlowerLady

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  16. Your photos, as always, are breathtaking, Marilyn! You certainly have me loving winter right along with you. And congratulations on having your photo published in your local paper - you deserve it!
    Blessings!

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  17. Hi Marilyn. I enjoyed your photos of the winter snow and beautiful winter skies. I'm so glad you are able to get out and cross country ski again as well as walk in the winter. Congrats on having your photo published in the newspaper. I haven't been out much (not at all!!) as our weather has been icy, then the rains of last weekend washed most of it away! It is snowing a lot all day today so I'm hoping to get out snow shoeing soon at the park. I love your cozy tea photos. I was interested to read about the Coalport teapot as I have one that is very similar! I wrote the information down on paper and stuck it in the pot so our kids would know what it is and that it has a bit of value. ;) I have a large jar too with a lid which I think is a biscuit jar as it's too big for a sugar jar. Also, I have a serving plate, a medium size platter, and 2 small oval plates but I'm not sure what they are for. The gold design on my teapot is smaller than on yours and I've read that it is called "tea leaf". It is also on the plates. It was interesting to find out the maker and approximate date of these dishes. My teapot is very stained and has been well used but not by me. Have a lovely and cosy day and enjoy some teatime. I'd join you if I could! Blessings. xx Pam

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  18. Yep - I would be one who rolls my eyes haha! BUT, you are SO right -- when the winter makes up the majority of the seasons, it's best to embrace it and look for the beauty. You CERTAINLY captured the beauty in these shots - I kept thinking I'd found my 'favorite' and then I'd keep going and there were MORE favorites! Love the untouched train track photo and of course the beautiful colors you captured in the sky - no wonder it made the paper! I too like to 'treat' myself to a little tea party on days like these when it's just too cold to be out and about. GOSH that teapot is STUNNING! And so old yet in such fine shape -- something I should strive for hahahahaha!

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  19. Love the pictures and the snow is do pretty. Love how your captured your snow princess with hints of snow on her. So sweet. Girl, I will have myself a tea party by myself quick like! LOL! YAY, your beautiful picture made the paper. You do so well with your photography skills. So glad you share. Happy Day to you dear lady. Hugs and blessings, Cindy

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  20. Beautiful pictures!! I love winter too, of course I don't live where there's snow, not normally anyway. We have had a few flurries lately. Miss Riley has grown into a beautiful dog, I always enjoy her pictures. Scrolling through your pictures I was actually feeling the cold, when that pretty cup of hot tea popped up it made me smile and warmed me up!!

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  21. I am so happy for you to have a photo published! Probably not the first time though since they are magazine worthy pictures. I told my husband I want to visit Idaho so I can see the scenery in person....and I want to go in the winter! Beautiful post!

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  22. What gorgeous photos Marilyn, it's so nice that your photo was published in the local paper. Your antique tea pot is beautiful. It's great that you were able to obtain information on it's history. I like to do that with pieces I purchase but often find very little information. It's always exciting when you find out how old a piece is. It sounds like you enjoyed your little "tea party". Have a wonderful week.

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  23. Oh my goodness gracious! These photos are absolutely breathtaking, Marilyn! Oh those gorgeous skies...and you even got it in the newspaper! Awesome!You certainly live in a most beautiful place. I loved seeing your little tea party and what a joy it must be to have found that lovely teapot, especially now that you found out how old it is! WOW! Enjoy your winter wonderland!...HUGS!

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  24. Beautiful pictures, you have captured the lovely skies so well. Glad you were able to get out and cross country ski again, congrats on your surgery going so well. So cool your picture made the paper! So nice that you have walking partners to go out with you :) Love how you decorated for you tea party, it's good to do something special for yourself! So neat you were able to find out about your teapot.

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  25. Marilyn,
    Your eye for capturing light, snow and the beauty around you is a true gift.
    Congratulations on the newspaper print of your photo.
    We finally got out to ski tonight. We have a ski trail 3 miles from our home. It is light at night. They use lights from an old airport runway to light the trail. It was great to get out and ski. We are to receive more snow Sunday/Monday. :-)

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  26. So cool the newspaper printed your beautiful photo. They knew talent when they saw it. Your photos are lovely and I actually feel cold viewing them. Cute tea party you enjoyed all by yourself. Love that. Thank you for your kindness and prayers for me. No wonder I'm doing well! God bless and keep you. Glad you're healed and can ski.

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  27. Wow! You take the most gorgeous pictures. The snow looks so beautiful. Congratulations on getting your photo in the newspaper. :) I think I've asked you this before, but I can't remember...what camera do you use? Every single photo you share is so pretty, especially these of the snow. There's no glare because of the sun and they're not dark. Enjoy your beautiful weather and cross country skiing! :)

    Blessings in Christ,
    Ashley

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  28. I love the winter! I love the crispness, the snow and the amazing colour that God puts in the sky during this time!
    Thank you for sharing your beautiful pictures. Northern Idaho is so lovely! So glad that now you can go out and enjoy your skiing again!
    Tea parties for just us are sometimes very special and relaxing!

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  29. I love winter too. It is so very, very beautiful! Thanks for sharing some of the beauty with us!

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  30. Hello Marilyn! I love snow, too, and everyone here thinks I'm crazy because this city shuts down when we get snow. It comes very seldom. I'm still waiting for this year. We did have a bit in November, but just rain since. I love the way snow brightens and transforms the landscape. Congratulations on having your photo published in the newspaper. You do take wonderful pictures.
    I like your solitary tea party!

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  31. I am one of those who says Noooooooooooo. =) BUT.....the photos of your wintry wonderland are beautiful. I can only imagine the delight at waking up at those glorious scenes each morning. Love your sweet teapot, such a pretty find.

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  32. Good Winter Morning Marilyn,
    Congratulations on having your gorgeous photo published. Those Idaho sunrises and sunsets are some of the best in the land. You know, I grew up in Idaho. I don't believe that once you have the mountains imprinted on your soul you can ever truly leave them. I am enjoying your Winter wonderland so much!
    Jemma

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  33. It has a beauty that it owns uniquely. Such wonderful photos. I'm feeling winter from here.

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  34. This was such a magnificent post from start to finish! Your winter images are amazing! No wonder you can exclaim, "Oh How I Love Winter!" And that picture of Riley is outstanding...along with all the other scenery. I enjoyed your tea party. Isn't it fun to dress up the table and have an impromptu tea party, even if it is just for you? You ARE special and deserve a special tea time. Would be fun to share it with you, however. Thank you for sharing this beauty with us today. I thoroughly enjoyed that from my desk in Florida, where it will go down to 27 degrees again tonight, two nights in a row, which is cold for us. But no snow in sight. God bless you, and enjoy your winter wonderland!!

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  35. Oh Marilyn your photographs are gorgeous, I can see why you like winter!
    The way the light comes through and the colours too are a joy to see.
    I'm so pleased that you are able to get out and about comfortably since your surgery.

    Enjoy the rest of January.

    All the best Jan

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  36. Your photos are just beautiful and so is your attitude about winter. But, it would take me a long while to adjust to it at this level. And, love that scripture!

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  37. Wonderful photos, good news and just generally enjoyed the post a lot.
    :) have a wonderful week.

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  38. Oh Marilyn, how wonderful that you love Winter. With all the blog friends saying they wish Spring would arrive, it is refreshing to hear that you love and appreciate the cold Winter around you. I love Winter as well. Although it doesn't get as cold here where I live as it does in your area, I am delighting in all of these snow pictures. How beautiful those skies are, and that's great that they put your picture in the local newspaper! I was especially fond of the picture with the train tracks, as my grandfather worked for the railroad. And how special that you made a tea time just for you. Tea time is very nice, and it's even better with Yummy goodies to go with it. Thanks for sharing your Winter pictures, Marilyn. They truly are wonderful.

    I hope this new year has been good to you so far.

    ~Sheri

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  39. Congratulations on your beautiful picture being published in the newspaper! Your pictures are so pretty. I am hoping for more snow here...that I can deal with but not the endless days of gray and rain. I can see that you are dreaming of your Spring garden though with all those seed catalogues...I am too. ;) YOu have inspired me to pull out and wash one of my pretty teapots and one of my china teacups so I too can have some tea. :)

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  40. Wow.... your photos are gorgeous as always. You always manage to capture them in the right light! So you sit outside and stalk the light? hee hee..... They so remind me of when I lived south of where I live now. It was La Pine, OR and a higher elevation and our house was on 2 acres and we had the most wonderful views of the sky, morning or night and I got some stunning pictures while we lived there. I do love the snowy photographs but... not so in love with snow anymore, as hubby doesn't shovel it and expects me to plod through it... and I worry about falling... or I have to shovel it and hurt my back doing it. It's sure fun to look at though.. through your eyes! Congrats too on the newspaper front page.. that is so neat and must feel really good. Too bad you can't have a spot there every week! Our weather has been OK but gray most days with air inversion and fog.. not the best but I'd rather have this than 2 feet of snow like we had last year. I'm such a wimp. OH... and love that you had your own little private tea party! Sometimes I do that in the afternoon... make a cup of tea, have a sweet treat and sit down and read for awhile. It calms my mind on the days I'm so busy or stressed, etc. Of course, I don't use a pretty teacup, which I should do.

    Hope your week has gone well.... hugs.. Marilyn

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  41. Winter and I have come to an understanding. I have learned that one just has to get outside and do something fun.

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  42. Marilyn, I always enjoy my time spent here with you. I do hope that you have an outlet for selling your photography. It is gorgeous and you certainly have an eye for it. I loved reading about the history of your teapot! I think finding out the history behind something is as enjoyable as using the item. It would certainly be true in the case of your teapot. So pretty. I enjoyed your video as well. xx

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  43. Hello, I have been enjoying you blog for awhile. I will be moving to Northern Idaho in the Spring. I am looking forward to a new life in Bonners Ferry. My husband and I were blessed with a new home that my BIL bought us. I am naming my new home "The Songbird's Cottage". I will keep reading your adventures in Idaho. My name is Cecelia

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  44. Hello Marilyn I am a first time visitor who found your blog from a fellow blogger’s on which you had left a comment. I am so glad to have dropped in as all the snow shots were wonderful and congrats on the newspaper photo as well. There is nothing quite like being out after a new snowfall when everything is so white, peaceful and clean. Please stop in for a visit to our blog when you can as we enjoy comments from visitors.

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  45. I love your attitude.... and what an awesome photographer you are! Congratulations on getting your beautiful foto published. I'd be honored if you'd link up with my little meme... Friday Foto Friends! Happy weekend... stay safe and warm! ๐Ÿ’œ

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  46. Some great winter sky shots!

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  47. Oh, I love winter, and find it to be one of the most beautiful seasons of the year. We don't get a whole lot of snow where we live, but when we do, I love getting out to enjoy it and take loads of pictures. We hope to one day soon live in a place where we get to enjoy four distinct seasons and enjoy proper winters. It's so much brighter and happier to look out and see white snow instead of brown, dead trees and grass {{smiles}}

    I loved looking through all your photographs...the untouched train tracks are so pretty!

    Blessings on your week! Joy to you ♥

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  48. You are great at embracing the winter season (much more so then I would be). So many pretty shots. Congrats on the one making the paper, it's lovely.

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  49. Oh my, Marilyn, I just did a post with the opposite view of winter....haha. Your photos are beautiful! How wonderful that one of your pictures was chosen for the newspaper!! I love your positive outlook on life, and how you enjoy the season...whatever it brings. xo

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  50. I enjoyed finding out the rest of the story with your teapot- how exciting that must have been. I enjoy winter too - for different reasons.

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  51. You've captured the beauty and soulfulness of winter, Marilyn. Love your tea party. . .sooo pretty. Hugs.

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Your comments are blessings to me, and I appreciate each and every one, they are precious to me! I appreciate you taking the time to comment on my blog... this is what makes blogging worthwhile! Have a blessed day!