I live in the Adirondack Mountains in upstate New York. If you haven’t traveled to my neck of the woods, the Adirondack Park is a 6 million acre state park that includes both state owned and private holdings, with over 2 million acres dedicated to a forest preserve. We’ve got Lake Placid and Whiteface Mountain up here, and it’s a gorgeous, quiet place to live and work. It also happens to be the setting of my current anthology release with authors Jacquie D’Alessandro and Kathleen O’Reilly, A BLAZING LITTLE CHRISTMAS.
There’s a lot to love about life up here. For one thing, it’s quiet. It’s fun to drive on deserted country roads where there’s no stress about the traffic. For another, there are no long lines at my post office and we get to know most all the locals on sight. The spectacular beauty is nothing to sneeze at either. But one of the coolest aspects is a phenomenon we’re experiencing now—the advent of the Nor’easter.
Every winter we get a few of these big storms. Tons of snow, whipping winds, low visibility, freezing cold temperatures. Some might say that’s awful. And I’m sure there are lots of problems associated with that much snow. But for me, it’s a great big excuse to stay indoors and count my blessings.
I love the opportunity to sit inside a cozy warm house and sip cocoa all afternoon, surrounded by my family. And nothing reminds me of the awesome power of nature as quickly as a big, bad winter storm. That in itself comes with a lot of important messages to think about. As in—the world is bigger and badder than me, and no amount of fretting, scurrying or working my tail into the ground will give me control over things that I have no control over. There’s a certain peace in letting go of your worries and saying—today, I did my best and that’s all I can do.
Mostly, I love that a winter storm tucks us in tight with the ones we love and reminds us that all we really need is right there at home with us. When the power goes out, we’re called to sit around the table and play board games by candlelight. And when night falls, I can still read a good book if I double up on the hurricane lamps and crank the wicks. Of course, my husband appreciates that no T.V. before bed means we ought to entertain each other.
So whether this winter finds you in the thick of a blizzard or on Florida’s sunny shores, I wish everyone a quiet day sometime over the holidays—a day to stay at home, unplug the family from the life static that is modern technology, and a chance to count your blessings.
Happy Holidays! And please do enter my contest this month at http://www.joannerock.com/ where I'll be giving away lots of great new reading material for your New Year.
Joanne Rock is a three-time RITA nominee and author of over thirty novels from a variety of Harlequin and Silhouette series. Check out her website or her myspace page to learn more about her upcoming releases.