Posts Tagged 'snow'

But There’s Nothing NEW

She is managing me as I work.

I’m impressed by the bloggers who still manage to find interesting anecdotes and photos to share. I have lots of thoughts in my head, but nothing ever seems urgent enough to overcome the winter/covid/lockdown lethargy that possesses me. It was rather fun to have a major snow storm, especially as the teenager who lives next door dealt with the shoveling (yes, we loaned him our snow blower to do 5 houses on the block). Neither my husband nor I had to go out so that was also good. But now I’m over it. We had snow a week later and honestly – boring. I want to say something like “either snow a substantial accumulation or don’t bother”, but I want to be very, very careful what I wish for. Because it takes a LONG TIME for the snow to melt, and it’s not so pretty anymore.

It snowed.

There WAS a plus to the big snow storm. As I checked in on the neighbor to make sure he knew that he could use the snowblower, his little sister came to the door as well. ๐Ÿ™‚ You remember her – she’s the one who greeted me on my return from a long, hard day at the office with “Can I have a hug?” *huge smile* I adore her and miss our baking sessions. Maybe we could bake with masks on? Anyway, she came to the door and told me she had a gift for me. She then presented me with a gorgeous eye glass case that she had made for me. Can my smile get any bigger? What an absolute joy!

The most beautiful eye glass case!

I made it back to the library this week to pick up more books on my “want to read, too cheap to purchase” list. Thank goodness for the library. What a brilliant innovation!!! ๐Ÿ™‚ While reading eBooks I came to several conclusions. I’ve already ditched the author who never lets her characters be happy. The relentless misery and disappointment is too much for me. I’ve decided I’m also bored when the main character is YET AGAIN considered the main suspect. Enough already. We know it’s NOT you so it’s boring to read all the details implicating you and the hostility of the ones suspecting you. Yawn. I’m also tired of books that start out with the protagonist breaking the law deliberately even though they are in law enforcement. I couldn’t make it past the first chapter. I don’t know if it was the writing or the “here we go again” feeling it evoked, but it’s taking up room on my iPad at the moment until I figure out how to delete it. I don’t mind obvious plots – I’m very happy reading “chick lit” where you KNOW who ends up together (unhappy girl runs to wherever, swears off men/that man, meets man/remeets that man, sparks, misunderstanding, fight, reunion, happy ending) if the characters are likeable and believable. I treated myself to a big THICK book a few weeks ago – Rhythm of War by Brandon Sanderson. This is Book 4 of the Stormlight Archive series. My son got me started on it and I love it. The books are a few inches thick, *grin*, and you do have to like sci-fi. I look at the book and I don’t start it, I just sort of drool. It seems that there are at least 3 years between the publication of each book. If I read it NOW, that will be good, because I remember everything (okay – a lot) because I just read the first 3 books all fall. But if I read it NOW, I’ll have to wait 3 years to find out more. If I wait to read it until Book 5 is out, I can have the pleasure of re-reading books 1-3 and then 4. ๐Ÿ™‚ I do that with another series – reread the entire series start to finish when the latest book is published. Those are much shorter books, however, and I’m sure that they are in the “teen novel” genre. I don’t care. I love Elantra.

And snowed.

We have still not braved going out to dine indoors at a restaurant. As stir-crazy as I feel at times, it’s still not worth the possible risk. What we did instead was have a friend come to dinner at our house. Rather than eat in the snow on the deck, we ate inside. We sat at opposite ends of the nearly 9 ft. long dining room table. I had an exhaust fan pulling air out of the house in the sun room, and a fan in the dining room pushing air out of the dining room (or such was my theory/hope). We had a fantastic dinner – my husband made what is now my all-time favorite dish, some French chicken recipe. It was wonderful to see our friend, who we’d not seen in months. We talked and talked and talked. Absolutely great.

3 cheers for teenagers with snow blowers!

This past weekend was the NFL Superbowl. It was also the first time in over 25 years that I was NOT throwing a Superbowl party. I’ve mentioned this in years past, how this might be our premiere party each year. We have to move out the living room furniture, we set up 2 TVs, TONS of food, dozens of friends. It’s always a wonderful wonderful time, no matter how uninteresting the game. I’ve been a bit bummed about no party – difficulty wrapping my head around that. On top of that I had some health problems. I mentioned my costochondritis. Not only did I have that, but apparently at the same time I contracted shingles. Well NO WONDER I’ve been exhausted all of January. Just as both of those appeared to have loosened their grip on me, my back went out the way it has not done in years. I don’t remember the last time I got “stuck” and had to call for my husband to help me move. I spent the day with my back packed in ice and popping ibuprofen. Thank goodness it cleared up very quickly. That meant I could think about a Superbowl zoom get-together. Cheers for my friend Pam who refused to let me wallow in self-pity. She kept nudging and suggesting things to do. I got my sister signed on board (as she is the one with the zoom account that can run for more than 50 minutes) and we did indeed have a virtual party. I made up Superbowl bingo cards (can’t start playing until after kickoff, and only words that are used in commercials or during the game broadcast) and sent them out to everyone. We had folks logged in from Florida, NC, Delaware, NJ, Ohio, and AZ. ๐Ÿ™‚ We all shared views of our party food and drinks. For most of the game people stayed on mute but when something major happened we’d text and chat. ๐Ÿ™‚ It wasn’t the same, but it was fun. It’s good to have family and friends. ๐Ÿ™‚

BC with her absolute favorite prey – the cloth butterfly. It appears regularly by my bed, delivered overnight to the sound of hunting meows.

The rest of life is pretty much as it has been. Sandwich making twice a week. Working from home. I took a new role at work, which contains all of what I used to do and then some. That means I’m in a LOT more meetings. I also appear to be on the 2-person committee of people expected to create a virtual “water cooler conversation” in text channels. Although it can be a bit annoying when the other committee member nags me to figure out what to do, it can lend itself to some very fun activities. I spent several hours photo-shopping our VP into “Where’s Waldo” type scenarios, and onto Mount Rushmore, into a suit of medieval armor on a horse also wearing medieval armor, and more. Today was turn our VP into an emoji. This is because I got tired of the other committee member saying last week “What do YOU want to do, Ahuva?” I replied “*I* want to be on vacation in the Caribbean”. Sigh. But today’s pictures did seem to bring a lot of enjoyment to the team, including (or maybe especially??) our VP. ๐Ÿ™‚ Success!

Sometimes that tricky butterfly manages to hide safely under the couch.

One Day in December

Winter! Bah! Humbug!
Donโ€™t ski. Hate the cold and gray.
Bring back hot summer!

Watching through windows
Snow falling, blanketing all,
Glad I am inside!

The storm has ended
Brilliant sunshine reflecting
Off pristine white snow

Young neighbors are best
Lend him our snow plow, sit back
Watch the sidewalk clear!

Northโ€™s winter solstice
Ends the lengthening darkness
Brings promise of light

Only four more days
Until sunshine starts to grow
More light, warmth, flowers!

Workday Wonderland

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Coming off the exit


I went up to Corporate yesterday for some meetings. I was a little concerned about the weather forecast. They’d been predicting 1-3 inches of snow up there by dawn and perhaps another inch in the morning. The commute was surprisingly trouble-free (for me anyway – there were accidents and tie-ups all over the place according to the traffic reports). I only wish I’d had time and place to pull over to take a picture of the trees along the lake as well. You may think that I was shooting in black & white but I was not. *smile* The world was gray and black and white all the way up, during the day, and then walking back to my car by moonlight (and safety lights & cameras). It was beautiful.
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shush. I know I shouldn’t have been taking this photo.

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walking from the parking lot

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almost to the door – see the sun starting to break through?

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looking out the window

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heading back to the car. the lower ‘moon’ is the security light

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i know it’s blurry but I had to try. ๐Ÿ™‚

It’s Still Winter

Which means it’s WAY too cold for me. Waking up to 17 F degrees makes working from home much more appealing than going out in the cold to go to the office. I miss them, but not as much as I love being warm and controlling the thermostat. It looks as if my crazy-busy work schedule has eased up now. We got the product out the door, working, and no major updates or changes have been requested. YAY TEAM!!!! Between the cold and the work I haven’t really had much to say. ๐Ÿ™‚ I know, hard to believe, right? *grin*

quicheIt snowed Friday evening into Saturday. The good news is our next-door-14-year-old got up and began clearing all the walks (4 houses in a row). The other good news was that my husband said he’d do the vacuuming for me. Oh yes!!! I decided that if he was going to be helpful that I would do something nice for him as well. So I made a cheese quiche. I used 3 cheeses: mostly swiss and provolone but I tossed in a little colby jack for some more color. I thought it looked beautiful and it tasted totally yummy. The pie crust was wonderfully flaky.

I had a very odd experience baking crusts for the New Year’s Day brunch. I NEVER have problems with crust, and for that party 2 of the crusts were in complete crumbles. I ended up using much more water than I like, and for the big quiche basically glued the pieces of crust together in the pan. It wasn’t the flour, because one of them used gluten free flour and one was my basic all purpose flour. Someone suggested that it was the butter, but I used the same butter I always do. Perhaps they changed the recipe. For this winter quiche I used my go-to recipe from The Settlement Cookbook (page 323 – my book opens right to it). driveway path thru snow I did play with the recipe a bit so I can’t verify if the butter was the culprit or not. I substituted coconut oil for the 1/4 cup of butter. I like the flavor the coconut oil adds and thought it would go well with the cheese and eggs.

I saw my young neighbor struggling to get my snow blower started in order to tackle the driveway. He wasn’t making progress and my husband was not home at that point. I said to not worry about clearing the whole driveway – just make 2 paths for the tires so that I could get the car out that evening without having to drive through the slush. He seemed quite relieved at that approach and set to work. I had to laugh, however, when I went out to see what he had done. *grin* Once he’d made me 2 beautiful tire paths, he’d done more than half the work – he should have just done it all. It was sunny, it was well above freezing, so I finished the job while the quiche baked.

I’m ready for spring and digging in the dirt.

The Polar Vortex Roars In

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I’ve been home sick the last few days – sick enough that I don’t even login to work. I think maybe I’m on the recovery road – my brain seems to be functioning a bit more today.

polarvortex2Yesterday as I languished in my chair under blankets, the sky darkened, the snow began falling. Then the snow began whirling and twirling and blowing sideways, and the house across the street vanished. It looked like the end of the world was nigh.

A lot of storm and fury, signifying not snow accumulation but plunging arctic temperatures. At the moment my outdoor thermometer says 4 degrees but the weather station says that with windchill it’s -12. I missed getting a picture of the 2 degrees last night.

Brrrrrr. Yes, I ran the electric heater in the basement so that if the cats needed the “facilities” it would not be too cold. Spoiled, spoiled kitties.
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It’s Going to Be Cold

So they say. I live south of the snow line for this latest storm – “Harper”. As is so often the case, people over-react to the forecast. I may be overly cautious as well, but at least my decisions impact only me. Way back in November 2018 we had a snow storm – quite a mess on the roads. Our governor did NOT declare a state of emergency and people went crazy in response. “How DARE he not declare a state of emergency??? We spent HOURS on the roads, which weren’t plowed, weren’t salted, blah blah blah.” Sigh. I know – that was heartless and condescending on my part. I’m not sure why people feel they have to wait for the governor to tell them to leave work early when it’s snowing and the forecast says more is coming. Seriously – many of us do work in jobs where we can just say “I’m leaving now” and leave. Percentage wise, fewer of us are emergency personnel than are NOT needed in a snowstorm. And if all of us who COULD leave early DID leave early – there wouldn’t have been such a problem. (Hey, don’t blame me – I worked from home that day.) Anyway, that was the governor’s first storm and the overwhelming verdict was that he blew it.

Now we have/had Harper. The vast majority of NJ (if not all of it by Saturday night) was below the snow line. The forecasts started showing that on Thursday, more so on Friday, and certainly by Saturday morning it was fairly certain that most of the state would get rain, not snow. We do NOT declare states of emergency for rain unless we are talking storms with high winds.forecast map storm harper We weren’t getting that forecast. But, the governor is a politician. If he was criticized for not declaring a state of emergency well by golly, THIS time he’ll get it right. He declared a state of emergency beginning at noon on Saturday, which meant all sorts of roads were off limits to various vehicles and certain businesses could shut down early in glee. I know this because I wanted to go to the library yesterday. I checked the hours to make sure it was open or that I could go after my grocery shopping, and saw a big alert that the library would be closing at noon due to the state of emergency and would not reopen until Tuesday. Sigh. The good news for me is that it was only 10:15 am so I had plenty of time but how foolish. At noon it was 43 degrees and sunny (I was out running errands). At 6pm it was STILL in the 40s. The rain didn’t start in our area until 9pm or so. Rain, not snow. Anyway, here we are in, I believe, a state of emergency. *rolling eyes more*

The forecast IS calling for dropping temperatures, for below-zero temps overnight and in the single digits most of tomorrow, with windchill “real feels” of below zero. My daddy brought me up right. hot tub with tarp I made sure the outdoor spigots were off, drained, and left open to drip. I double-tarped the hot tub. It does have an insulated lid but when it gets this cold, I look at the tub and see hot air escaping and it looks like little dollar bills flying up into the sky. So even though I can’t take a dip tonight now, at least I am giving the hot tub thermostat some assistance. My car is tucked inside the garage (I’m such a princess) and I put my husband’s car in the driveway. The big warning for tomorrow will be ice. If there is any water left on the roads tonight from the 12 hours of rain, the road might be quite tricky tomorrow.

We plan on staying warm, cooking a yummy filling dinner, and not going outside!

Blizzard

in RL looks like snow in SL, did you realize that? I have the pictures to prove it. Avatars, however, have much better lives during blizzards than do biological creatures. I have the aching muscles from shoveling 20 inches of snow to prove THAT. RL pets, however, live lives comparable to Bamboo. Yeah, we had a blizzard yesterday. Very pretty. Okay, now I’m ready for summer.

Winter Fun

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Apparently it’s winter. That means snow. Silly me, my idea of heaven, paradise, perfection is the beach – hot sun, warm sand, ocean breeze, waves. But everywhere I go in SL it’s snowing. It was snowing at the AIDS benefit concert. It has snowed at the Crown and Pearl. Shengri La is covered with snow. And Aintree Willow is snowbound as well. So fine. Thank goodness I found a freebie jacket in my inventory. It will keep me going til I have time to go shopping for something else. Shopping – a hobby for all seasons.

aintree-willow-in-winterHonour is my good friend. She has rescued me when I threw myself under a bus (um, for those of you who don’t know what that means, it has to do with trees. Even more than that – I owe my SL home to Honour. I love wandering about Aintree in her gardens, seeing all the neat things that she builds. So when Honour says that she’s built this wonderful new toboggan ride and I should come be among the first to try it, well, of course I go. Despite the snow. The cold. The fact that I am really really bad at steering. The fact that I do NOT have winter-appropriate clothing.

I got to be among the first to slide down the tobaggon slide. My first attempt – oh my word. I missed the sliding-tube-2tube entirely and hit the wall by the fire. ๐Ÿ™‚ I TOLD you I don’t steer very well. So I sat and sulked in a chair by the fire, trying to thaw my frozen toes while the other three went sliding down the chutes. Once they’d finished debugging the scripts (oh now – THAT must have been why I couldn’t steer, right??) and were standing about discussing the neat twists and turns, I decided that it was time to try again. So I made them explain VERY CAREFULLY exactly what it was I was supposed to do. Gee, it couldn’t be simpler. You right-click the toboggan and sit on it. Then you use your arrow keys to move forward and through the chute. Yes – you need to steer once you are in there. I admit it – it is a blast!!! A lot of fun, with wonderful wind sound effects as you speed down and through the chute. Very cool, very fun. Definitely a place you can take the whole family.

too-lazy-to-leave-the-fireFor those of you who, like me, think you prefer the creature comforts of the lodge, Honour has provided that as well. Big comfy chairs around the fire, with hot cocoa and coffee available. You can TP from the bottom of the mountain to the top and back again, no toboggan slide necessary. There are free ice skates available and a free sled. LOTS to do and enjoy. Even for a beach gal such as myself. ๐Ÿ™‚ I had fun! Thanks Honour!

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