Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Winter Wonderland

We're half way through February and the snow continues to fall.  Locally we have gotten almost 24 inches since the first of the month. A little over another inch and we'll have the record for the greatest snowfall in February.  Road crews have done a great job clearing the highways for traffic.  Subdivisions take a little longer.  Our complex doesn't have dedicated streets; they're more like lanes, narrower than a common street.  Therefore, the county doesn't maintain them, doesn't clear them.  So we have a private contractor.  We've seen a lot of their trucks this winter, and their snow blowers used to clear the sidewalks are music to our ears.

We kid about the amount of snow we have, asking, "Where are the going to put it if we get any more?"  As far as Brandon is concerned, they can pile it all outside my garage! He and Christian went out yesterday with shovels from sandbox-size to a standard snow shovel and carved a tunnel into the banked pile next to my driveway.  Today, after school, instead of coming in to have a snack, Brandon went out to continue enlarging the cave.  Before he got focused on the project, I snapped this picture of Brandon and Sophia in the hole. 

Daytime temperatures have been in the high 20s or low 30s.  Perfect for the kids to play outdoors, hard to get them to come back inside.  Excellent as well for making icicles.  Our roofs have a steep pitch, and icicles form easily.  Today I watched as they grew longer and longer. As the snow melts we'll have to watch for problems with water getting under the roofing shingles. 

There is snow in the forecast for the next several days.  We've dealt pretty well with two feet of snow.  I almost feel guilty hoping that having gotten that much, it would be worth a little more aggravation to get two more to set an all-time record for February.  (Two days later, we did!)  

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Where Pictures Speak Louder Than Words

The snow storm appropriately named Snowmagedden by President Obama provided an additional eye-opening experience for those of us who ventured outside yesterday, Tuesday, morning.  I'd heard of hoarfrost, ("a covering of minute ice needles, formed from the atmosphere at night upon the ground and exposed objects when they have cooled by radiation below the dew point, and when the dew point is below the freezing point").  Simply put, in the bright morning sun, the trees looked like those on Christmas cards.  They glistened as though they were jewel-covered.

I was so impressed I grabbed my camera to take pictures before continuing on to run errands.  As the sun climbed in the sky, the ice melted from the trees, and by the time I was home at noon, they were once again just naked, plain trees.

Saturday, February 6, 2010


February 6, 2010.  A storm moved south to north, west to east.  We had plenty of warning.  I walked yesterday and even though the weather was approaching from the south, the wind was from the east.  A cold wind.

In the late afternoon, flurries started.  Steady.  By dark the ground was covered.  I woke during the night and could hear no road noise.  Not good.  Not even a snow plow.  Worse.

My cellphone beeped a little after 7:00 AM.  A text message.  Dawn had sent a picture of the bird bath outside their front door.  As an e-list friend said when I posted the picture there, "That's not snow; that's a giant mushroom."

These are two more pictures she posted on her Facebook page:

The sun was shining by midmorning.  And cars on the road were  passing at close to the speed limit, so the plows must have gone by.  But our complex streets and driveways remained impassable until late afternoon.  We were snowed in today, but tomorrow will be almost normal -- but parking lots will be clogged with piles of snow.  

And now there's word another storm will arrive Tuesday.  Be sure to check back.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Need to Know

Daughter Dawn shared the following experiences with me via e-mail.  With her permission I'm posting her comments here for you to enjoy and, hopefully, laugh at. 

From what occurred this past Sunday:

Well, Sophia gave me something else to think about tonight....  She insisted that she wanted to know how a baby gets into your belly.

REALLY?  I struggled and procrastinated for an hour or so, talked about it being a special thing between a mommy and a daddy, said I’d find something on the computer, then she wanted to see a video of it!!!

CRAP!  I talked about the sperm and the egg.  She said I was making that up, so I showed her the video of that….  She said, “This is boring. I want to see how it gets in there, not this!”  Sigh.

OK, I decided to bite the bullet.  I told her that I couldn’t believe that she is only 7 and I am discussing this with her….another sigh. “Alright, this is what happens.  A husband and wife hug and kiss..."

"YUCK!!!!  Don’t tell me any more. I don’t think I want to hear any more!" as she covered her ears and closed her eyes.


And this today:

This morning while Sophia was on the toilet, “Mom, where does the fisheye (sperm) come from?

“Oh my gosh, Sophia, I really can’t believe you are 7 and want to know these things.”

“I know,” she said.  “So where do they come from?” 

“They come from the daddy and go into the mommy and find the egg. The first one to get inside the egg wins and gets to make the baby.”

She smiled “Oooohhhhh, that’s fun.  It’s like a race!"

With a sigh of relief, I turned to walk away, and there stood Brandon (age 10) with his thumb up and a wink, and he said to me under his breath, “That was a good answer, Mom.”

A Tribute

An exemplary woman.  Diminutive of stature, monumental in spirit.  Indomitable.  Compassionate and passionate.  Such a strong personality, she would live forever.

Until last Sunday, January 31.  Dee died in her sleep.  Thank you, God.  She had been in poor health, but had an underlying strength that surmounted those issues. Her brother notified us of her passing with a comment on her last blog post.  We imagine she slipped away without pain.  As it should be for our matriarch.

She was a member of many e-lists and I subscribe to one of them.  If you take time to click through posts on her blog, you will find her feisty humor a perpetual element of her posts. 

Those of us who were ac- quainted with Dee will miss her humor and wisdom.  She left a mark on each of us and we'll miss her very much.

(In the photo are Woofie, sash, Dee, Jena and Gail, all who became acquainted through the internet.)