Hey everyone! I hope you are having a good week. We have been getting spring here in the woods, but it's coming very slowly. After last week's meteoric temperatures, mother nature seemed to retreat back and decide not to get so crazy. It's been mild: not hot enough to bring on May flowers, but warm enough to make the ice on the lake finally break through.

This week, I spent a lot of time taking pics of the water from several different vantage points. I am loving the interplay between the old ice and snow of winter, and the fresh flowing water of spring. It makes for some really interesting, textured photos. This shot shows the ice floating on the water in beautiful s-curves:
Ice patch on the lake
And this the same area, from a different vantage point, you can really see the glass-like still quality of the water. I love the soft muted colours of this picture, You can also see a lot of rocks. In the early spring, the rocks tend to pile up on the shore. Later on, as the water goes down, much of this shoreline may turn to sandbar, and become a place suitable for swimming.
Ice on Lake Winnipeg

Lake Winnipeg shoreline
And in this scenic shot, you can see that there is unmelted snow in this secret little spot of wilderness, located only 1.5 hours from the city.

And so that is our life here in the woods: we are in the life of in-between right now: water flowing with life, but being impeded from full progress by the ice and snow of winter, who is not quite ready to give up his reign of this land.

It's sometimes depressing, as we long for green, and new life. But it's also beautiful -- it's the beauty of struggle, a picture of contrast and dynamic interplay of the elements.

We are living in a time of transition. And this reminds me so much of the transitions we often feel in our own personal lives. Sometimes we are trying to embark on a new venture, but it's just not quite time. We want everything to start blossoming, but we still have to take care of some business. And so we yearn for the new era and wish we were done with the old period.

But patient we must be to finish off what is in front of us, before we can fully embrace the new challenge.

I, too, am in a transition phase. At the end of the school year, I will be leaving my job to pursue full-time writing. My mind is pulsing right now with ideas for books and articles, but I cannot break through to the new phase until all the things are finished with my old assignment. But because I know it's close, I feel an urgency to get writing, and get things flowing. I can feel the excitement of my new adventure to come but it is not quite time to be set free.

Beautiful sunset off Lake Winnipeg
For the next two months, I live in the in-between. I love teaching, but I know that I must also prepare for my new life. So, I write and I teach, and it is exhausting. But it also beautiful -- the beauty of struggle. I am enjoying the last few months in the classroom, savouring each day with my students, but also knowing I will be walking away soon.

Are you living in a time of transition, and want things to be done now? Remember the lake which must slowly melt, and wait for all the snow to be gone, before it can flow comptely free. Remember the spring that comes slowly, and let the dream you are waiting for come to pass in its own time.

Dear reader, I would love to hear from you. Talk to me! Have you ever been been in a time of transition? How did you deal with it? Did you have any walks this week? What kind of views did you see? I would absolutely love to hear from you about this, or any other topic.

And finally, just to encourage you to get outdoors this week, I leave you with this information: a report by the  American Surgeon General found that walkers live longer than non-walkers. Sounds like a good bonus! Have a wonderful week!

Love Sharilee. Hey thanks so much for reading. I would love to hear your comments and input in the space below. Also, if you like what you are reading, sign up through my Facebook page. or receive posts by e-mail by joining here
Hello! How is everyone today? Today is April 21, and we are finally getting spring! Yesterday, our temperature went up to 21 Degrees Celsius. It's been so nice, FINALLY!  It has been a really, really long winter.

One week ago, we got our last snowfall, and it was so beautiful! There's something about a spring snowfall that's much different than your typical snowfall in January. The snow is heavier and just sits on the trees, like a thick coating on fried chicken.

If I had kids, it would have been perfect for a snowman, or a snowball fight.  It was really quite magical. I love this quote that describes so perfectly the magical world of a snow-covered landscape. :

the first fall of snow is not only an event, but it is a magical event. You go to bed in one kind of world, and wake up in another quite different, and if this is not enchantment, then where is it to be found? 
J.B. Priestly  
Four weeks ago, I came home after school on Friday to this scene:

And who could resist the graceful lines of these graceful branches below? I am not sure what type of trees they are. If anyone has an opinion, I would love to hear it.   The fresh soft hard snow creates a new world. The spring snow is a different snow, warming the air and covering the ground like a cozy blanket. 

And a walk to the lake was a black and white world, with the black branches a perfect contrast to the pure snow.  Thoreau said this about the stark silhouettes of winter:

Nature now, like an athlete, begins to strip herself in earnest for her contest with her great antagonist Winter. In the bare trees and twigs what a display of muscle.  
Henry David Thoreau 
Well, I guess this post has turned into a good-bye to winter. You were beautiful, but we must make room for the spring. But in your season, we learned to be patient and to endure. Your lingering taught us that we can endure longer than we thought we could. Your harshness taught us to take extra good care of each other.  And your monotony taught us that we are more capable of entertaining ourselves that we believed. Farewell, and let us now move quickly to summer. But don't worry, we will welcome you back next year.

I encourage you to get outside this week and discover your spring. Studies show that we only need 5-10 minutes exposure of sunlight 2-3 times a week on bare skin to get enough Vitamin D for our bodies' needs. Did you know Vitamin D is considered a factor in helping us with insulin regulation, and preventing diabetes?

Dear Reader, I would love to hear about what kind of weather you are enjoying in your area. Please comment with your area, and the weather. And please feel free to leave a comment on the blog on whatever topic you like.. I would absolutely love to hear from you.

Love Sharilee. Hey thanks so much for reading. I would love to hear your comments and input in the space below. Also, if you like what you are reading, sign up through my Facebook page. or receive posts by e-mail byjoining here
Hey everyone! Welcome back to the blog! I know it's been a while, but I am excited about writing again. As you can see, I have changed the template (the look) of the blog. Unfortunately, this change caused a couple of bugs. Please bear with me as I sort through these errors, and try to ignore the strange double blog posting below.

I haven't written here or about four months. To be honest, I was quite confused as to which direction to take this blog. I have felt like I had really lost my focus (or more accurately, never really found a focus in the first place.)

Well, after much soul searching and praying, I have decided on a more clear focus for the Life in the Woods blog. This is the plan! It may change a bit as we go along, but this is the main thrust of it.

A picture of the road going down to the lake,
featuring a stream formed from the still-melting snow. 
The Life in the Woods blog will be about my adventures with nature, featuring beautiful photos and an encouragement taken from nature. I will also have a part where I encourage you, the reader, to get into nature a little more, using studies, quotes and examples to show how spending more time outdoors is beneficial and life-changing.

I want to post just once a week, and will try to post on the same day of the week every week, but I am not sure which day of the week it will be, yet.  Once I decide, I will save my posting for that one day, and try to follow my format the best I can. I look forward to having more of a structure, and I hope you enjoy it, too! I won't be posting as much about my adventures in the house, but focusing on spending time in nature.

Why the change? Well, I wanted to share something I am very passionate about, with you. I have always loved spending time outdoors. A walk in nature helps me think and lifts my spirits. I love my walks, and want to share some of the encouragement I find in them, and also some of the beauty I see, through my photographs.

Moving here to our home in the woods was specifically to be closer to nature and God's creation. It has always been my dream to live somewhere so close to nature, and I want to share my greatest joy with you. I hope you find it inspiring!

And lastly, I want to share quotes, studies and facts about spending time in nature, as well as facts about specific topics of woodland living, so that my blog can be both educational, as well as inspiring. As a teacher, I love to share knowledge with people. 

I hope you like the revised structure of the blog. I will be writing a new post with the new format some time this week, so you can see what I am talking about.

In the meantime, have a wonderful week and God Bless!

Love Sharilee.

Hey thanks so much for reading. I would love to hear your comments and input in the space below.

Also, if you like what you are reading, sign up through my Facebook page. or receive posts by e-mail byjoining here
The lake, an early summer morning.
Hi everyone! I hope you are doing well. I apologize for the inconsistent posting schedule lately. I know it must have been strange to have no posts for six months, and suddenly, it's three in a month. Yikes! Get a schedule, girl! But, I am experimenting to see how often I can squeeze in some writing, in between my crazy work schedule and everything else that needs to be done.
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