It was 36 degrees F at 7:20 this Christmas morning as I got Shadow our for a ride through the quiet neighborhood to the Japan House garden.
Just north of Japan House and its garden, stopped for a view of the U of I Arboretum through sweet gum branches,
which decorated the sunrise with their spiky, star-like seed receptacles.
Rode into the Japan House Garden among the bald cypress trees and stopped to observe the hellebores,
which were dark green and leafy (they seem to have a living presence all year) but had yet to bloom this cycle.
Walked close to the pond and observed piles of dead leaves on the shore merging with inverted images of trees, reflections on its surface.
Looking toward the rising sun near the weeping willow, spotted a well-defined, rising sun-dog
and its reflection in the pond, a fitting image for a special day.
Then headed back home to do the usual family celebration of Christmas.