Winter’s Last Stand

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Today the daffodils are resting their weary heads against the frozen earth. After a fairly mild winter, and an exceptionally mild February, winter appears to be making its last stand, complete with snow flurries and wind chill advisories. In Southwest Virginia we’ve been spared the mountains of snow that are currently blanketing the Northeast, though, so for that I am grateful—especially since many trees already have blooms and we could’ve been facing a lot of power outages.

But even as I walked Leo today, I could hear, over the wind’s roar, the hopeful songs of birds in the tree branches, and yesterday we saw a gathering of robins, pecking at and hopping along the snow-speckled earth. The promise of spring exists even on these frozen days.

I’m trying to remember the lessons of hygge that I read about in The Cozy Life. That means candles burning, a hot cup of spicy tea (I’ve recently discovered Bigelow’s Constant Comment, a blend of orange rind, black tea, and spices), and curling up under a blanket with a good book. I’ve been skipping around between books as of late. This week I’m reading The Crimson Spell, a book by F. Goldsborough based on the Charmed series. After I finish that, I’d like to get back to Little Women.

As far as writing, since my last check-in I’ve written a rough synopsis for a novelette, The Rogue Wore Red, formerly The Redcap in the Library. I’m worried the new title suggests Regency romance, and it’s really a fantasy romance story, so I might have to play with it. This week I’ve written 1,200 words in that story. I’m also getting close to finishing Michael’s character arc in Spellfire’s Kiss.

What about you? Are you digging out from under mountains of snow, shivering at the blast of icy wind, or enjoying springtime sunshine where you live? Do you think The Rogue Wore Red is more of a Regency title than a fantasy one? What are you currently writing—or reading? I’d love to hear from you!

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Fantasy & paranormal romance author. Witch. Tarot reader. Possibly a woodland sprite. Debut release TANGLED ROOTS now available. Magic awaits at

7 thoughts on “Winter’s Last Stand

  1. Hi Denise! That’s one gorgeous bird. It’s been too long since I’ve visited you. For that I am truly sorry. So many things happening in the McFarland household. I’ve been overwhelmed. I had forgotten about Constant Comment tea. It used to be an old standby for me. Now, it’s Green tea. We all go through cycles, don’t we? Here in Phoenix, we are hovering around 90 degrees F and it will stay that way until mid next week when the temperatures are expected to drop back into the eighties or perhaps even the seventies for a couple of day. Yipee! But winter is over for us. So enjoy your walks and the last of those winter fires as you sip your tea bundled up under a throw with a good read. For it won’t be until next autumn when that will come about again. 🙂

    1. Hi, Karen. It’s so good to hear from you. I hope you’re doing well. The weather is slowly warming up here, back into the 50s, which is more usual for this time of year. I knew it got hot in Phoenix, but wow, 90 degrees in March? That sounds brutal! You’re right. It’s best to accept the gifts that each season gives to us, whether it’s lighting a few candles and curling up under a warm throw in winter or enjoying the long days and sunshine of summer. 🙂

  2. The snow’s finally all melted, and we’re back to rain! … reading Europe in Autumn by Dave Hutchinson, an alternate-history science-fiction thriller, no less. 😀 Only just started, looks good so far.

    1. Oh, I haven’t heard of that one. It sounds fascinating, though. 🙂 We didn’t have much snow, but it’s all gone now, and the most bitter of the cold has left us. We’re slowly climbing back to more seasonal temperatures. Finally!

  3. Hi Denise,

    Good to hear from you. I’ve been busy the past two weeks irking on stories. I started a sci-fi story, but put it on hold to work on another story. I recently finished the 3rd draft—I think—of that story. I’m not sure whether or not I want to publish it on my blog or to submit it to a magazine. The former seems more likely.

    That’s all I have. Hope you’re doing well.

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