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Over the Backyard Fence in Sherman

December 5, 2013
By ELAINE G. COLE , Westfield Republican / Mayville Sentinel News

Once again we have a winter wonderland just outside my door. Every tree and shrub is dressed in elegant white lace and the yards and meadows are covered with a smooth, ermine carpet. Outside, large fluffy snowflakes are quietly drifting down to the ground. Just now as I glance out the window in my study I see the sun has just popped out making the view even lovelier.

I couldn't ask for more on a cold winter day. It gives me the urge to don my jacket, gloves and hood and go to the woodland and valley behind our house. I won't however, because I know although I could walk or slide down the hill, it would be too hard to trek through the snow back up the hill to the house.

That's one of the things that is not easily done at my age! So I'll just continue to enjoy the view outside from inside and rely on my memories and pictures for such outdoor activities in winter.

I have taken many winter pictures over the years and have others that were taken in yesteryear, some of them by my ancestors. Sometimes I spend a winter evening sitting by the fire just looking through albums or boxes of them. Many of them have the identification on the back side, but others don't so I have to try and guess who they are or what they depict.

There's pictures of our childhood, grandparents, parents, aunts and uncles, school days, graduation and our wedding. Pictures of our babies, toddlers, youth and them all grown up. Pictures of our grand and great-grand children and oh so much more.

They hold so many memories of life in yesteryear and even now. I'll never forget what they represent because every one reminds me of all of the things we have had the opportunity to experience as we've traveled through our lives thus far. Although some have been difficult, the majority of them have been good. We have been richly blest and thank God for that.

If by chance you think of a difficult trial or bad day, forget about them. Concentrate only on the good days for they far exceed the bad. Put a smile on your face every morning and remember there's a God who loves you and offers you Salvation, joy and peace, if you seek Him every day.

I've found that one can learn lessons about life by reminding our self about the birds and animals, especially in winter. Although the snow lies still and deep and the wind is oh so cold, just look at the forest creatures, animals and birds. God created them with the knowledge to find food to sustain them. They find dried berries and tender bark for food in winter and it's often hidden in the snow.

Some of them dine on corn stocks still in a field, dried berries, apples still on the trees or on the ground and other outdoor types of edible food. He also provides food for the birds and other animals. Though it takes work to obtain food, it?s obtainable for all.

May all of you see and find some special beauty in every season and especially during the winter days ahead. As Edwin Osgooad Grover once said about this season:

"Now comes the silent days of inward living, the profitable hours of meditative peace in our outdoor world. Without, white fields are full of snowy silences; within, the welcome warmth of hearth and home, the open book, where march great thoughts to lead us far afield through legend, song and story. Now, if ever, should our summer dreams cone true -our hearts attain their aspirations - our hands fulfill their long-awaited duties: now should our faith renew its hold on God and Truth and our very souls climb upward to their Heaven, For lo! the silent winter is the Spirit's spring."



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