by SM

I just noticed, much to my relief, that the date on a picture I took of the little yellow flowers in our yard last year is in January. Very late January, but still the current month. Once they popped up, I recall temps slowly rising. Of course, they don’t have as far to rise here as in some other places. The weather service puts out warnings of extreme conditions if frost is expected—even if temps are still above freezing. W

Spring showers do bring flowers, but they come later than April, and can liner into June. The real season of rainy, grey days though is fall, with gloomy, wet weather alternating with glorious yellow leaves and the occasional red vines. 

I think a reason for Germany’s famous twinkling lights and warmth for Christmas season is the length of winter nights. Those traditions, like putting candles on a tree, pre-date Christianity here, and may outlive it, imo.

What marks the seasons where you are, and what climate would you like to live in?

81 thoughts on “Seasons

  1. what climate would you like to live in?

    California… but where? I’d say a condo in SF and a country home in the Sierra foothills would be ideal. Today SF is in the 50s and sunny so very comfortable in a hoodie or light jacket. In the foothills it’s sunny and in the mid 60s so pool weather if it’s not too windy and you have a solar heater.

  2. It’s 37 degrees here and it feels way too cold. If I had to choose, I’d go with California, too. However I’d choose San Diego.

  3. I like my 4 seasons, but I would prefer more snow in the winter and less hot in the summer. So maybe I should move to VT or ME? I haven’t even worn my big coat more than once this winter!

  4. I would like to live in what people in LA call “the south bay”, specifically Manhattan, Hermosa, (South) Redondo Beach. Not on the beach, but a couple of blocks in. Sunny & 68 today. I would be able to walk, rollerblade, ride my bike on the strand every day of the year.

  5. I think I also like those long nights in the winter, and the corrresponding long days in the summer. I also hate really cold snowy winters. So my picks, weather-wise, would be Western Europe, specifically northern/central France, the Low Countries, and that part of Germany that borders them. Also, the Pacific Northwest, which have the added advantage of gorgeous scenery.

  6. Another option would be Auckland or Sydney and Boston. May to September in Boston and October to April in the antipodes. That way you have long summer days all year. And endless summer as it were.

  7. I would like endless moderate summer too. I think Southern California would be good. I don’t like it too cold or too hot.

  8. I used to say that I would really miss the seasons if I moved to California or the like, but now I think that’s bunk. Also, the winters here are getting milder, but not in a good way. Rainy and 38 is quite possibly the worst weather there is (besides severe storms of course). MEH. I’d rather have it just be cold & snowy. The darkness in winter gets me to – having it get dark before 5pm is the pits. But I also don’t like the oppressively hot & humid weather we get in the dead of summer. It’s like the worst of both worlds sometimes.

    “I would like to live in what people in LA call “the south bay”, specifically Manhattan, Hermosa, (South) Redondo Beach. Not on the beach, but a couple of blocks in. Sunny & 68 today. I would be able to walk, rollerblade, ride my bike on the strand every day of the year.”

    This sounds perfect!

  9. Sydney is hot. I love it there, but I’ve been there two different times when it was over 100 degrees for a long time. The same thing happened to me in Melbourne on a different trip. These are beautiful places, but it gets really hot and humid too.

  10. I thought I would miss the seasons moving to LA from Chicago, and it turns out that is not the case. I certainly don’t miss shoveling out my car, scraping off the windshield, the biting wind, or the fact that I had to wash my hair at night so it wouldn’t freeze on the way to work if I didn’t dry it all the way.

    Turns out sunshine and warmth is GREAT all year around (except for the super hot days). And we get cold enough weather in May grey and June gloom for me to wear my collection of Chicago-acquired knee high boots that are otherwise too toasty the rest of the year. There are seasons here, it’s just more subtle and different.

    Now, summers in Chicago, biking on the lakefront, kayaking in Lake Michigan, I do miss. And concerts in Millennium Park, with picnics and wine on the lawn. And public transit that works because the land/population area is more compact. But otherwise, LA is amazing, and the constant sunshine is wonderful for the mental state.

    I’ve often thought about how the Pacific Northwest is my favorite temperature in a lot of places, but missing the sun might be an issue.

  11. Santa Cruz CA or a nearby for the baseline weather and ambience, when grandkids grow up and I am down to a household of 1 old lady and 1 cat.. Not toward the mountains. Kayak, not hike the priority. And there are busses or ebikes if I want to increase elevation and reach the woods and dont drive.. Renter or tiny condo. Too old to care about the earthquake risk. I like NE weather in theory. But with age I am finding extended outdoor activity harder to sustain in winter. As Milo said about alternative living arrangements , sounds good in 10 years

  12. This is the post I was referring to when I asked if anyone wanted to remind me of the TB page for pictures.

  13. I understand why you do not care about earthquake risk in CA, but i mentioned my concern about fires on another post. Even if you don’t have to evacuate, the air is not ok within hundreds of miles of the fires. The large fires happen now every year. I love CA, and there are numerous places that I would like to live, but I don’t think that I will do it unless it is eventually because DD wants us to move there if she happens to live in the state.

    I really like four seasons and I could survive the winters in the northeast/mid atlantic if they are all like this one. I know that I am going to jinx it since it is only a few weeks since winter started, but this is an easy winter….so far.

  14. Earthquakes and fire are a risk in the Pacific Northwest too. We went to that area a few years ago. There were some problems with fires up in the Cascades, and when we visited Mt Rainier, we took a wrong turn, ended up on a road I didn’t know. We hit a barricade – the road was closed because of the fires. The air quality was terrible, and I was glad to turn around and to back the way we came. It is so beautiful there, both Seattle and Vancouver, but with that kind of beauty comes risks. I certainly would not want to be in a low lying part of Seattle when the great tsunami comes.

  15. I hate snow. I hate the feel of it, I hate digging out the car, I hate driving in it. I hate ice too, especialy when I want to go out for a walk or a run. I am downright terrified to walk on icy streets. One of the many things I hated about living in central MA was the constant snow. It didn’t completely melt until well into April.

  16. Even if you don’t have to evacuate, the air is not ok within hundreds of miles of the fires.

    I totally understand why you say that, and I have no rational explanation. There’s just a “Yeah, California burns down every fall” attitude. From my perspective on the West Coast, in the 1970s, I couldn’t understand why anyone would ever live in New York — there was horrible crime, the Bronx was on fire, there were blizzards and Son of Sam and it just looked like an uninhabitable cesspool. But that was just the media’s emphasis to sell papers. It left out all the things that keep New Yorkers there, including the very same sense of “Yeah, some of that’s just New York,” the way we Californians say “Yeah, there are earthquakes and the whole state burns down annually, but we have the beach and the mountains and craziness and creativity.” Maybe it’s just the devil you know?

  17. Mooshi, I was seriously torn between that part of Germany and Berlin for a while, eventually chickened out and went with the familiar. I do live this city.

    Ivy, I hear you on MEH weather! When I was here in the 90s, I remember going out to the lakes with a friend when they froze. Skate rental and hot chocolate shacks had been set up. It was just a magical environment! They don’t freeze much any more. Even if they did this year, Covid regs would prevent people congregating like that. We had 1-2 mos of high temps in the 40s. Since just before NYE, highs have been in the 30s. MEH. It also drives me nuts when there is barely any fluctuation between night and day, whether that’s 32-34 here or 83-93 in Florida summer.

    Lauren, yes, I “know” a couple people online in those parts of Australia who say it’s brutally hot there for a long summer. But can you believe the www?

  18. “Rainy and 38 is quite possibly the worst weather there is (besides severe storms of course). MEH. I’d rather have it just be cold & snowy.”

    +1. I LOVED MN winter, except for the fact that it lasted like 5 months — when it was still snowing in April, I was just so done. And I need lots of sunshine, so the NE “grey from November through about March, as the slush turns darker and darker” gets to me. But I am also becoming less and less tolerant of heat/humidity, which does just horrible things for air quality and aggravates my asthma.

    CO had the best overall. Summer days got hot, but it always cooled down at night; winter days got cold and snowy, but it was so sunny that it almost always had at least some warm period in the day, and the snow melted quickly. My ideal would be something like one month of serious winter, like Taos; May-August somewhere cooler, like Maine; one totally awesome fall month in a crisp area that has a real fall and blue skies and all the leaves changing; and the rest of the time in San Diego or Hawaii for relatively moderate temperatures and wanting to be outside.

  19. Rocky, living splat in the middle between them, my dad and most people I grew up around had those attitudes about both those places.

    One of the many things I hated about living in central MA was the constant snow. It didn’t completely melt until well into April.
    Has global warming changed that? Also, why did you move to the NW if you hate the cold instead of, say, Atlanta?

  20. I am feeling positive as we are nearing Jan 14 and the celebration of the home country festival when the Sun moves into the Northern Hemisphere. A day for kite flying and making of special sweets.

  21. I really like where I’m at. The few weeks of extreme cold, and July and August are horrible, but the rest of the time it is lovely. I just got back from a run. Thirty degrees, snow on the ground, but the roads/sidewalks are clear, and sun! But, tulips don’t bloom until May, and there is no spring…just winter into summer.

    I loved Lake Tahoe. The one time I was there the skiing was great, and you could walk around town with a light jacket on. I have FB friends that live there and and year round it looks amazing. I love the idea of being in the mountains, but when not doing snow activities it is mild. And the summer can’t be grossly hot. Bend, OR might be my go to for year round perfection.

  22. S&W, the Northwest isn’t that cold. In January, it tends to run in the 40’s, both high and low. Whereas right now in my part of NY, the high is about 35 and the low is in the 20’s. And that is not a really cold day for this area. Seattle doesn’t get very much snow because it doesn’t get below freezing all that much.

    I like hot weather, but not Southern style hot weather. Too sticky for me. For hot weather, I like New Mexico or Arizona or eastern WA.

  23. I don’t think there’s enough money in the world to convince me to live in a cold climate again. I didn’t realize how bad the gray, gloomy weather was for my mental well-being until I left. I do miss the magical feeling of a big snowstorm, but it isn’t worth having gross depressing weather outside half the year to get it.

  24. “I LOVED MN winter, except for the fact that it lasted like 5 months — when it was still snowing in April, I was just so done.”

    Yes exactly. When it was reliably cold & snowy, you could get into it. Go skiing, snowshoeing, play hockey or broomball on the pond, ice skate. You kinda make the most of it – at least until March when it becomes intolerable. But it’s been hovering around freezing here for 6 weeks now – often with freezing rain or the dreaded “wintery mix” followed by ice/slush which freezes overnight. MEH. And I’ve barely seen the sun for weeks.

  25. Lemon, I love Tahoe too. I used to go there a lot back in my SV days, mostly to ski, but sometimes in the summer too. Circling the lake is a great bike ride.

    But I don’t think I’d want to live there full-time, year-round. I’ve been there when it got to -20 or so at night; and when the snow was still piled many feet high on roadsides through April.

    OTOH, that was over 20 years ago. Maybe climate change means that won’t be happening again, or not as frequently.

  26. Rio, interesting how we are all different. The relentless, barely-changing heat for legit half the year drove me indoors, or into shadows when I was outside (and I had always loved the sun!). That played into my depression. Last summer I noticed that I finally looked forward to sunny days again, sought out the sun, didn’t mind sweating through the occasional hot spell. But too much of it was not a good thing for me.

  27. Rio,
    The nice thing about living in a milder winter climate is that you can always get on a plane and visit a snowy city to get a snow fix. Then back home.

  28. I dont know the totebag page for pictures, but I use postimage for mine. I am very busy today, so dont have time to post a tutorial until evening, but you could go try that website.

  29. Lauren, I am never moving from here. But I find weather extremes hard, so a destination has to be middling temps, walkable, more weird than not.

  30. Do we really need pictures to show us the seasons? Does it add any value to this post? It does not – so why would you take time out of your day to try to help post pictures? I completely understand what why it is nice, or even necessary for some posts to have photos, but this post doesn’t need photos.

  31. The weather is pretty perfect here in Florida right now. It’s easy to see why so many midwesterners have a perch here for the winter. Mid 60-70s is ideal for outdoor activity and it’s light enough to play golf till 6. Even yesterday, when the high was 59, was sunny enough to make swimming outside pleasant.
    It will be hard to return to the gray and cold. But there might be some good ski days to make up for it and then the days are getting longer.
    I agree with Ivy that 38 degree rain is the worst. Especially when it freezes overnight.

  32. Anon, yeah, I was envisioning this post going a different way, towards people saying “here’s what it looks like here” instead of “that’s where I’d like to be”. For a couple years, posts like “what celeb do you look like” where popular here. I thought sharing the pix would be another way to get to know one another, by sharing our places, and also give us all eye candy. I don’t have any problem with people talking about whatever—I’ve said a couple times that I only tossed up a bunch of topic ideas because it sounded like Meme could use the help while Kim is dealing with the funeral. But that’s why I thought it would be a really graphics-heavy day, with people posting the kind of day they love where they live.

  33. Scarlett, I agree that when you come down from a real winter, temps in the high 50s and 60s is great. Even just seeing colors in the landscaping is warming. All the snowbirds I know that are down there are complaining about it being too cold right now. They have definitely adjusted to the “warmer” Florida, and I just want to scream, “but you played golf and had water aerobics in the sunshine. You had fresh grapefruit for breakfast. Enjoy it!”

    As much as I say I can’t stand Florida, I would like to spend a week there…I miss traveling.

  34. Lemon Tree,
    The club members eating at the poolside cafe, all bundled up in heavy jackets, probably think I am crazy to be in the pool. But the water is at least 85 degrees and the sun is shining. ITA that they have forgotten what real winter feels like.
    And all of the flowering trees and shrubs in the gardens are heavenly too. I saw a bunch of my houseplants growing in yards. If DH wins the lottery I would have no objection to buying a house here and using it just for a month or so.

  35. “ITA that they have forgotten what real winter feels like.”

    More likely, they have a different view of ‘real winter,’ or understand that there’s more than one definition of it.

  36. Testing — trying out Meme’s image site with a pic of the stained glass transom — let’s see if this works.

  37. Yay it worked!! I added the close-up of the center medallion because it’s the one part that didn’t come through in the big pic.


    you set up an account. Then upload a picture.

    you click on hotlink for forum and the copy icon

    Paste here


    I don’t think it will come through with all bracketed stuff, so I then eliminate it on both ends and go from https to jpg

  39. Re. seasons, DH is from Vermont, and I learned from him that Vermont actually has what the locals call “mud season.” This is what in other places would be known as spring. The issue is that lots of water from melting snow + lots of dirt roads = lots and lots of mud. Definitely not the best time of year to be up there.

  40. You have to paste the whole string into the comment box, and then delete everything before Https and after Jpg. Works then. Cinna agrees.

  41. Meme: yes, that is, in fact, exactly what I tried — same thought process, deleted before/after. Who knows. User error, I’m confident.

  42. LfB- thank you so much for sharing the pic. As you’ve talked about working on it, I pictured something with fewer pieces. This is so nice – I love the way it combines geometric and organic shapes, all in a very eye-pleasing balance.

  43. This is the text to post minus the spaces

    https: // IMG-4835.jpg

  44. LfB – your stained glass work is gorgeous!!! Wow!!! I love stained glass.

    Warm and sunny weather will always be my first choice – but if I can’t have that, then I’ll go with moderate weather like Seattle. I don’t miss Vermont’s weather at all (and needless to say, I don’t miss mud season).

    MM – I don’t think most of Seattle is at much risk for a tsunami. Possibly the low-lying industrial area (Sodo) – but most of the city will be fine. And apparently if there’s a tsunami, it will take a couple hours to reach Seattle.

    I feel like most places have their type of natural disaster – earthquake, flooding, hurricane, tornado. Per this CNBC story, Texas, Florida, California and Louisiana are the worst in terms of amount of money that has been spent on disasters. Utah is the safest. With Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine also looking pretty good.

  45. Anon, yeah, I was envisioning this post going a different way, towards people saying “here’s what it looks like here” instead of “that’s where I’d like to be”

    Then perhaps you should have said that in your topic instead of asking “and what climate would you like to live in?” People answered the question you asked.

  46. Rocky, I woke up to that. If that’s the weather where you are, I’m scared. But hey, it did wake me up, lol.

    LfB, agree with everyone else that that is really nice work—the planning and the execution.

    Anon, fine by me that people are picking up on what I thought was a little add-on. Like I said, it’s very imprecise writing, because the point was to give people a starting point, not to deal with a burning issue in my heart. You have such clear ideas on how to write a great topic; I’m sure we will all enjoy the ones you’ve submitted.

  47. On the train to the job that still isn’t official (contract signed, gub’ment website says as long as everything has been turned in, you can start working without the visa/work authorization, but until I get them, I’m still nervous), I realize that this is the third time I’ve had a 9-5 desk job. The others were one year each. Ironically, during my years as an academic, I got up and was at the desk much earlier than when I had appointed work times.

    It looks like the site Meme suggested doesn’t even require making an account. Sweet! First attempts are the “Beweisfotos”—photo proof of what I said about those flowers popping up in very late January and the neighbors still having a blooming good flower bed in mid-November. (I think—the way the site looks on my phone, I see the urls but not thumbnails)

  48. That’s two Beweisfotos and two of fall foliage. I recall being disappointed other times I lived in Germany in the past that they didn’t get “real” fall colors but it looks beautiful to me now. I’m not sure if the colors have changed (with climate change) or if I have (years where there was nothing like fall color).

    Laura, about posting links from that site—the “https” business shows up twice in each url; you have to cut out one of them.

    Ooooh—looks like if I just scroll down on my phone, I get to thumbnails I can copy/paste!

    I always like these swimmers poised at the bank of the Spree, thought their nakedness made the grey seem colder in the pic. The one of the cathedral is just to say that it stays light late in summer.

  49. Another thought for my anon friend—you asked “do we really need to photos to show us the seasons?” Of course we don’t, if we want to learn the “classic” four seasons. My cousins growing up in Arizona learned about fall leaves and winter snow, although for them snow meant driving up to the mountains—they never saw an open, flat field of snow that merged with the sky. As Allie said about her experience in California “ There are seasons here, it’s just more subtle and different”. I learned the same thing living in Florida. It isn’t just cooler in the winter months—there were little red berries that were a harbinger of cooler weather and other signs of changing seasons. I imagine that being on the water (or wanting to get there), boaters might notice different signs of seasons than the rest of us. And mud season and fire season are probably not the only “special” seasons known only to locals. One more self-indulgent picture, because it’s such unusually stormy weather for Berlin. They don’t get good, hard thunderstorms here, and hail is really rare. We miss that thunderclap that opens up the heavens and the fresh, fresh feeling afterwards. Also a sunset pic for Rhett, because of the location. Enjoy, my anon friend.

  50. Thanks everyone for the kind words.

    Sunshine: I learned so much planning the design! I went through all these pictures, and I realized in doing so that what grabbed me was Eastlake designs, because of the intense colors and the geometric patterns (but with some curves and swoopiness too). And then I realized that part of why they grabbed me was because that was the era of the house I grew up in, so it felt familiar. Those windows with one big square pane of clear glass in the middle surrounded by smaller colored squares? Eastlake. And since this house is the same era, it seemed like a natural fit. So I took a bunch of the ideas I’d seen in different windows and tinkered with them to come up with that. Except unlike the Eastlake folks, I really, really like iridescent glass. ;-)

    The sidelights are going to be MUCH simpler. Partly because I want them to be more transparent to allow light and sightlines into the rooms. And partly because there are four of them, and it would take me probably 2 years to do what I just did x 4. ;-)

  51. Thanks Louise. Day 2 in the books & I don’t have an id/keycard yet. Training starts tomorrow. The training system is down, so they had me shadow people for two days because there was nothing else to do with me. Pretty ridiculous, if you ask me (but of course they didn’t). A couple hours were eye-opening, but beyond that, I can’t see that anything happened that’s of value to the company. Anyway, On my way! home now.

  52. SM. Thanks for sharing the good news. Glad to hear about the orientation short days. I wanted to ask yesterday, but when you were able to post during “business hours”. I was worried that the bureaucracy had delayed the start of employment.

  53. Meme, I appreciate you thinking of me. Training 6 hrs/day for the next 3 weeks (assuming they can get things to work.)

  54. LfB, ToH recently featured a house with windows meeting your description of Eastlake windows, some of which required restoration.

  55. Finn, making/restoring glasswork for historic houses sounds like the perfect putter-around-in-retirement job for Laura!

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