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Monday, January 24, 2011

Freeze Frame

Each year at this time, the crystalline designs that appear each morning offer clear evidence that we need to replace the remaining leaky windows in our house. Someday, when the budget allows, we will.

We took care of the worst of the failing windows years ago in the process of a kitchen/family room renovation. The replacements are thermal, with faux-panes imbedded between two sheets of glass. From a distance, they look like traditional windows, but up close, they are fakes—two dimensional and vinyl, verses the remaining originals which were constructed with real wood. Other then the ease-of-cleaning these weather-tight products deliver, I’ve disliked the “new” versions since they were installed about fifteen years ago. This may be why I’m hesitant to replace our old kitchen window, and the two huge front picture windows, which flow five panes down, nine across and provide style and definition to our 1950’s ranch.

And then there is this. It’s only on the original windows, where frigid outside temperatures collide with the warmed air of the inside, that early January mornings deposit ice bouquets. Furry white leaves and stems bow and blend and feather beside each other, the twigs of frost flowers, planted by cold, blossoming on our failing glass. Depending on the the breeze, the dampness, the strenght of artic pressure systems, every day brings a unique design, always fleeting, deigned to melt.  For the next few weeks though, they'll form again overnight—an unexpected seasonal garden that no impermeable modern window could ever replicate.


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17 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

In other words, you'll lose your photo opportunity when you finally replace those windows.

Colette said...

Ohhh... so pretty! I love your description of an unexpected seasonal garden.

glnroz said...

Cold weather is my enemy, but i can see these as a sort of "frosy olive branch". Nice shots..

glnroz said...

"frosty",,,even,,lol

Jan Morrison said...

I like everything about this post - the photo, the thoughts, your heart when it comes to nice old windows. sigh.

Sharon said...

Lovely imagery, both visual and verbal. But, oh it makes me shiver.

Robyn Campbell said...

Love this post. The old windows, the words, the beautiful photo, and most of all, might I say what an eye you have. You know, a lot of folks don't notice the loveliness around them What a pity for them. GREAT POST, LIZA!

Helen Ginger said...

Beautiful pictures. Love that you focused your camera on the small joys.

N. R. Williams said...

Beautiful pictures, I remember Jack Frost well. Your post also reminded me that sometimes are character's are too fake. We need to go for authentic.

Thanks for your comment on Helen Ginger's blog about my post.
Nancy
N. R. Williams, fantasy author

Jennifer Shirk said...

Oh, it IS like a little seasonal garden! Pretty!

Wine and Words said...

Things left unattended
take life
from our procrastination
their procreation
born of our burden
but not our labor

such beauty
makes us wonder
if we ought toil
at all
- Annie


Really supremely beautiful! I've much to fix also, when the funds appear. Doubt there is anything so beautiful as this under my leaking sink.

jbchicoine said...

How can something so beautiful feel so horrid?!!

WritingNut said...

I've always loved those designs that appear... they remind me of both simplicity and beauty :)

And I love what you've likened it to... an unexpected seasonal garden... beautiful!

Carolina Valdez Miller said...

Aw, ice bouquets! How lovely! It'll seem bittersweet to replace your windows, I bet.

'Yellow Rose' Jasmine said...

Yes, love the prose. Thanks for sharing some winter beauty. Sometimes it's hard for me to see.

~Nicole Ducleroir~ said...

I'm my goodness, I love this post! What a beautiful, fleeting winter garden. Thanks so much for planting this imagery in my mind today!

Jacqueline Howett said...

A beautiful moment of thought, and thanks for sharing the images.