January, Why I Love It

January 31, 2022  •  Leave a Comment

Photograph of snow-covered yard.Winter Snow in Northeast OhioSnow covered trees and picket fence, a peaceful winter scene.

Welcome to The Kristin Shawd Photography Blog

Welcome to my first Kristin Shawd Photography (KSP) blog post. Look for upcoming posts featuring child & family photography, senior sessions, photography tips, and more. However, this post will be short and sweet, focusing on one small aspect of me as a person rather than on my photography. I’m excited to finally launch the KSP blog and I’m really glad you’re taking a few moments from your busy day to read it. Onward we go…

Today is January 31! A Great Day

Today is January 31. A great day but is also a bit of a sad day for me.

Why great?

Today is great because it’s the concluding day of January…JANUARY! My favorite month of the year!! Yes, this is true. 

I live in northeast Ohio (NEO), on the fringe of the snow-belt, and January is indeed my favorite month of the year. While I know I might be in small company, I’m sure there’s at least one out there who shares my sentiment for January…but likely loads more who don’t. (Leave a comment and let me know your insights on January.)

What’s so special to me about January?

That’s a reasonable question considering the obvious. 

  • January is cold, dark, and often dreary (in NEO). True. 
  • Days are short and often dreary while nights are long and dark. Can’t argue with that.
  • The snow is a hassle. Often true. 
  • Ice is a hazard—both walking and driving. Definitely true, be careful!
  • Driveways need plowing, walkways shoveled, cars dug out—all before starting your day. All true (on some days).

What’s to Love About January?

So seriously…what is there to even like about January, not to mention love??

You’ll just have to read on…as the following offers a glimpse into my enjoyment of January:

First, January is a month of stark contrasts. Contrary to the extra-busy schedules of the holidays in December, January is quiet, subdued, chill (at least at our house…and yes, pun intended). As much as I enjoy the traditions and extra engagement of Christmas, I look forward to the slowing and relative calmness that arrives with January.

Second, January is cold. Yes, it is! And I love, love, love that feeling of stepping outside wrapped in my below-the-knee coat, hands deep in my pockets, chin snuggled into my scarf, cap pulled down over my ears, boots crunching in the snow. I’m toasty in my bundle but I feel the piercing cold as it hits my face. The colder the better (well, down to about zero, that is). It’s brisk and invigorating and it somehow makes me feel alert, attentive…alive! 

(That said, I feel deeply for anyone who works outdoors in January in a bitter climate. For once the cold breaks through my layers I head straight for the protected indoors. I admittedly would feel very differently about our colder months if my job or lifestyle required long exposures to it.)

Third, January’s days are short, making its nights long and dark—and both are often cloudy and dreary (in NEO). Yes, all true. But, I find there is a hidden blessing in this, too. It draws the family inside, often to the fire, close. The shorter days mean longer evenings gathered close. 

photograph of a  father and daughter walking done a snowy neighborhood street.Winter WalkAn image that captures the joy of a January. I look back especially fondly on those cold January evenings when our kids were little. January was a slow sports and school activity month in our family and so life just had a chance to slow down…relax…reflect.

The same is true for photography. January is a naturally slower month. And so, I chose to take the month off (mostly)…to step away and disconnect…from my camera, from work on KSP, and most importantly from social media.

But today concludes January, marking my transition back. While I’m sad to see January fade I’m excited to see where the rest of 2022 will lead.

Happy (Belated) New Year & Welcome to my Blog!

 



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