The sun will rise at 8:13 this morning. (I get up and this post goes live at 8.) It won’t set for 9 hours 43 minutes, until 5:56 this evening, and we’re still gaining 6 minutes 47 seconds a day. Even seconds add up! Next week the sun will rise before I do, but the week after that we’re back on Daylight Savings and I’ll be getting up before sunrise again until March 18, which happens to be the same day we start getting 12-hour days.

Clouds, sky

It’s really brightened up. This was taken less than a month ago, only about half an hour after solar noon.

Why before the solstice? Most obviously, because sunrise and sunset are defined as the time the upper limb is level with the horizon, not the center of the sun. Here, at high latitude, the sun rises at a rather shallow angle, and it takes quite a while from the time the upper limb appears until the whole sun is visible.

The moon is full today, but it’s no longer as high in the sky as it was at midwinter – only a little over 30 degrees elevation when it crosses the meridian. It’s been too cloudy to see it, though, or the aurora the active sun should be giving us. For that matter, it’s been a little nippy to go out at night – generally below 0° F, though it’s getting above zero most days.

I have decided to do something totally crazy and sign up for the A to Z blog challenge in April. On Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays I have regular topics, so on those days I’ll be double-posting, with the A to Z post probably going live around 8 pm. The topic? Well, I went through the character list and glossary for my books, and found that I’m missing only one letter: Q. I’ll probably do Query letter for that, but the rest will be posts about my books, introducing the major characters and some bits of their world. It’ll be in kind of a strange order, but I’ll be able to give some background not in the books. I’ll try to remember to put the logo with a link at the bottom of each A to Z blog, as it is on this one (which is not an A to Z blog, but my regular Monday weather blog.)

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