A winter solstice de-light

Although it’s already been weeks since we had our first snow in Minnesota, today’s winter solstice marks the official start of winter — and the shortest day of the year.

I had every intention of scampering outside this morning to set up my tripod and do a time-lapse film of the entire day. Alas, Mother Nature didn’t cooperate. (It’s now noon, and I still haven’t seen the sun.) So instead I thought it might be fun to revisit the magic light of some of my past favorite sunrises and sunsets.

Ironically, I have only two from my home state: a Twins baseball game, as seen from the 55th floor of the IDS Center …

Twins sunset solstice 1160806 BLOG

… and a cold morning in Hugo, where I worked for one year as a stable-hand. It was 15 degrees below zero (Fahrenheit) this morning, so we let the horses out just long enough to muck their stalls.

hacienda solstice BLOG

But I’ll be quiet for a while and just let you enjoy nature’s fireworks.

Bruges solstice 1010456 BLOG
Bruges, Belgium, 2013
Chautauqua 2006 solstice BLOG
Chautauqua, New York, 2006
Colmar 2012 solstice 1060022BLOG
Colmar, France, 2013
Eiffel solstice 1060893 BLOG
Paris, France, 2013
 Munster solstice 1200504 BLOG
Freiburg, Germany, 2013
Munster solstice 1240910 BLOG
Freiburg, Germany, 2013
Viking ship 2745 solstice BLOG
Reykjavik, Iceland, 2006
NOLA solstice 1180424 BLOG
New Orleans, Louisiana, 2014
Paris 2008 solstice BLOG
Paris, France, 2011
Paris solstice 1080825 BLOG
Paris, France, 2013
Rome 2007 solstice BLOG
Rome, Italy, 2007
Scottsale solstice 1080519 BLOG
Scottsdale, Arizona, 2010
Solstice Edinburgh 2000 BLOG
Edinburgh, Scotland, 2000
Venice gondolas 2007 solstice BLOG
Venice, Italy, 2006
Venice solstice 1350237 BLOG
Venice, Italy, 2012
Coffeepot solstice 1090926 BLOG
Sedona, Arizona, 2010

As much as I may enjoy nature’s spectacular fireworks, though, my favorite moment is still that quiet, fleeting instant when the last star still burns bright in the night sky, even as the first rays of sun peek over the horizon.

Venus solstice 1090945 BLOG
Bring on the light.


    • You are so sweet! And because I know what a visual person you are — and what a keen eye you have — I’m very honored. Happy winter solstice, Judy! xx

  1. Great post, and it would have been great to have a time-lapse of the Winter Solstice ~ and it seems your weather, outside of the clouds, is pretty awesome for Minneapolis (34 degrees). Great series of photos, although the one of Target Field and the Twins game from the IDS Center is awesome…

    • Thank you so much for stopping by, Dalo 2013! And thank you for your kind words. You’re right: Our weather right now is pretty awesome for Minneapolis. But check back in January, when I may actually be incoherent from the cold. 🙂 And my thanks again for your *stunning* reportage on the “endurance of the Tacloban.” That post is going to stick with me for a long time. Cheers to you!

      • Ha, ha…I do not think I could handle Minneapolis in January 🙂 But then again, a grey & bleak Seattle isn’t anything to write hope about either…but will be back to Hong Kong in March so there is light at the end of the weather-tunnel. Thank you and wish you a great final week of ’15.

    • Aw, Sherri, thank you! I’ll admit that looking at those photos made me feel pretty content too — because they’re a reminder of how fortunate I’ve been to have visited so many beautiful and interesting places. Hope your solstice was wonderful, and I hope you’ll enjoy the extra minute of sunshine today! 🙂

  2. Oh, spectacular photos! The one of the horses was my favourite, until I scrolled down to the bateau mouche…and Nôtre Dame…and the palms…and the last star. Really skilful and so beautiful – thanks for sharing them.

    • Thank you so much! The selection process took a couple of hours, actually … I’m starting to think I may have too many photos! 🙂

  3. Spectacular array of images; and I do especially like the last one with a lone star in the sky. The world really is a beautiful place for those who can see it with their hearts as well as their eyes. Bravo !!!!!

  4. I can sit and stare at these all day! What beautiful images and what joy it must bring to remember each and every moment you captured them. I simply cannot pick a favourite, they are all breathtaking! Wishing you a wonderful, peaceful Christmas filled with love and laughter. May 2015 be your best ever! Hugs from Denmark. xxx

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