Winter Solstice

December 21, 2010

I know many were psyched about the lunar eclipse today, but I had something else I was looking forward to. . . .

the last day of losing daylight!!

Today marked the shortest day of the year.

Sunrise – 10:14 a.m.

Sunset – 3:42 p.m.

Approximately 5 1/2 hours of daylight! eek!!


Here’s a look at the progression.

(These pictures were actually taken yesterday because I knew I would be at a dentist appointment this morning during the sunrise. It was cloudy yesterday morning, but I think you’ll get the idea.)

9:00 a.m.


9:30 a.m.


10:00 a.m.


3:15 p.m.


4:00 p.m.


4:30 p.m.


5:00 p.m.



Now here are some pictures from today.

9:30 a.m. this morning prior to my run (that bright glow at the top, center is a street light, not the sun)


another shot at 9:30 a.m.


10:15 a.m. when I got done with my run


Can’t deny it wasn’t a beautiful sunrise.


2:00 p.m.

You can see how low the sun is in the sky during the winter here.



For lunch I had a Quinoa-Stuffed Pepper.

I actually made these last night for dinner, and they turned out quite good.

Quinoa-Stuffed Peppers

(Based off this recipe.)


1/2 can (7.25 oz.) no-salt added diced tomatoes undrained

1/2 cup water

1/4 cup quinoa

2 large red peppers

1 Tablespoon olive oil

1/2 large onion, finely chopped

1 large garlic cloves, minced

4-5 fresh mushrooms, sliced (I only added these because they needed to be used up.)

1 can (8 oz.) tomato sauce

1/3 cup frozen corn, thawed

1/2 can (8 oz.) black beans, drained and rinsed

1-1/2 teaspoon dried parsley flakes

1 teaspoon paprika

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

1/8 teaspoon ground pepper

1/2 cup cheese (I used a soy cheese, which is why it didn’t melt all that well.)


1. Drain tomatoes, reserving juice; set aside

2. In a small saucepan, bring water to a boil. Add quinoa. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, 15-20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed.

3. Meanwhile, cut peppers in half lengthwise and remove seeds. In a large pot, cook peppers in boiling water for 3-5 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold water; invert onto paper towels.

4. In a large skillet, heat oil and cook the onion and mushrooms until onions are translucent. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute longer. Stir in half the can of tomato sauce, corn, quinoa, tomatoes, parsley, paprika, salt, pepper flakes and pepper over medium heat; heat through.

5. Spoon into pepper halves. Place in a 13-inch x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Combine half of the reserved tomato juice and remaining tomato sauce; pour over peppers.

6. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes or until peppers are tender. Sprinkle with cheese; bake 5 minutes longer or until cheese is melted.


Craig and I both liked these. The spices were just right, and I loved the variety of ingredients.


Tonight we are headed over to my in-laws to decorate their tree. They didn’t do it earlier because they were waiting until Craig’s brother got home.


Did you watch the lunar eclipse?

    1. Hi Michelle,

      You live in a beautiful and cold place. Great pictures.
      The winter solstice is great to experience here in Ireland too. Although it was pretty cloudy.

      I love your recipe, it looks so delicious.
      Thanks for sharing!

      Merry Christmas!


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