The definition below is scientific and accurate but what it really means is that while all the winter is ahead with ice and snow, the days will begin to get longer and each day we will begin to have more light, and it means that there will be a time several months off when we will begin to think about getting my day old chicks from the same place in Pennsylvania where I have always bought them. They will arrive in the mail and the post office will call up and tell me to get over there and pick them up.
Livestock at the farm is now down to 2 barn cats, old Rusty and Blackstone. They arrive at the door as soon as the car pulls in and they know milk will be forthcoming. My nephew was up yesterday and I told him to give the cats some milk in their plastic bowl on the porch. He made the mistake of filling it to the top but cats are smart. They drink their fill and no more.
“The winter solstice occurs exactly when the axial tilt of a planet’s polar hemisphere is farthest away from the star that it orbits. Earth’s maximum axial tilt to our star, the Sun, during a solstice is 23° 26′. More evident from high latitudes, a hemisphere’s winter solstice occurs on the shortest day and longest night of the year, when the sun’s daily maximum elevation in the sky is the lowest.Since the winter solstice lasts only a moment in time, other terms are often used for the day on which it occurs, such as midwinter, the longest night or the first day of winter.
The seasonal significance of the winter solstice is in the reversal of the gradual lengthening of nights and shortening of days. Depending on the shift of the calendar, the winter solstice usually occurs on December 21 to 23 each year in the Northern Hemisphere, and June 20 to 23 in the Southern Hemisphere.
Worldwide, interpretation of the event has varied from culture to culture, but most northern hemisphere cultures have held a recognition of rebirth, involving holidays, festivals, gatherings, rituals or other celebrations around that time.”