~ the temperature rises over thirty degrees between 8am and 1pm
~ your morning trip to the outhouse requires a metal shovel to knock down the poopsicle (gross I know) that broke the designated wooden stick
~ your chickens spend the entire winter underneath a heat lamp, and you are a slave to their frozen water needs
~ the sun spills in through the windows of your cabin to wake you up, and you hear nothing but chickadees--no sounds of other people in the world
~ that despite living with an outhouse and no running water, you have a DSL connection
~ that as the morning grows light earlier and the day stretches longer, I thank whatever benevolent forces exist in the universe that winter is coming to an end, and that I live in a truly beautiful place.