Walking in the Moonlight

Winter Gardens

A  North Idaho garden at  this time of year is a space of silence and rest.   The snow lies heavy and cold over the garden. A  few stalks of the giant sunflower stand skeletal against the barren snowscape.  As a gardener, I find the winter peaceful, but I miss the outdoor activity of gardening, the flush of color and the varying textures of growth.  Plunging my hands deep into the soil and feeling the energy of  the earth.  Sometimes reading the Baker Creek Seed Catalog   just isn’t enough and I find myself wandering out to the garden on my way to the woodshed and gazing thru the gate.  Can’t actually walk thru the gate because the deep snow is mounded, preventing it from opening.  What is a gardener to do during these sleepy months of hibernating cold?  Learning to enjoy the passing seasons, day and night, becoming grounded is essential to feeding our souls.

The breathtaking beauty of a full moon is one of the awesome sights in this world.  A vision of beauty that is repeated with unending cycle every month.  The dramas and crises and circumstances of human beings notwithstanding, the moon waxes and wanes overhead with unceasing regularity.  I watch the waxing gibbous moon with a growing sense of anticipation…

The ethereal photography of EcoEtsy’s own Kanelstrand beautifully illustrates the magic of the full moon.

Full Moon Walks

A family tradition of Full Moon Walks has made watching the cycle of the moon a household event. Learning about the new moon, enjoying the sight of the crescent, sighing over the waning gibbous and the excitement of watching the moon grow larger and fuller every night culminating in the full moon.  Learning to watch the phases of the lunar cycle is a wonderful learning experience for the entire family. Every season has its’ moonlit beauty and taking a walk thru the luminesence each month gives a feeling of connection with the cyclic nature of  the earth.  Long before Twilight consumed the imagination, my rambunctious household of children and I would traipse around our rural neighborhood in the light of the full moon.  Sometimes startling other neighbors, our little tribe would straggle along the road exclaiming over new discoveries and waving at the occasional (and probably disconcerted) driver.  Now, accompanied by Hank the Cowdog and my 11 year old daughter, I mosey along the road in the cold, crisp air  loving every silvery breath.

December is the time of the coldest and darkest nights.  Bleak nights.  A welcome December full moon is known as the Cold Full Moon.  Native Americans sometimes call it the Long Nights Moon.  Gleaming over the snow, the moonlight is reflected thru windows and into our lives.  Waking in the night, I have seen the silvery light playing on the bedroom walls.  I pad softly to the living room, to the oversized window that faces the garden and stand in the soft glow of the full moon.  Knowing that I will see this same moonscape in a few months, transformed with the turn of the seasons gives me comfort and hope for the return of warm weather.

Full moons are a time of wondrous connection.  One of my favorite memories of my father is chatting on the phone with him during the full moons.  Although we were separated by 900 miles of distance, we could both gaze out of our windows and see the same moon.  Call a loved one this next week and share the same glowing vision as you share your lives.

Full Moon Walks can be taken every month.  To connect with serenity is as easy as opening your door and stepping into the moonlight.  Take a Full Moon Walk this next week.  December 28th this year is the night of the full moon.  Gather the kids and dogs.   Throw on your coats, boot up and head out.  Leave the camera and cell phones at home.  Stroll the streets or your yards by the light of the full moon.  Different shades of silver transform familiar trees or buildings into ghostly shapes.  Amazing nightscapes will enthrall you as you see the world in an entirely different light.  Conversations ebb and flow with the sights and sounds of the night.  The connection between family members or friends is experienced in a new context that brings a deeper level of togetherness.  Indulge yourself this month.  Take a Full Moon Walk.

How do you celebrate the ebb and flow of the moons’ cycles?




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  1. One other thing. Could I copy this and send it to be published in the Bayiew Bylines? I’ll have to know soon because I’m not sure when the cutoff is. However, it’s timeliness is only dependent upon the season and February’s Bylines would be just as good.

  2. Wow, Kathy; what a talent and what a wonderful mother and teacher. Please keep writing and sharing your thoughts with all of us. I, for one, enjoy them immensely.
    Happy Holidays and have a great 2013. Love to you and yours.

  3. Jan Irving says:

    Another winner my friend! Love to read your writings. Such a talent in writing and designing your wonderful cards. Merry Christmas to you and yours, Kathy!