Sunday, January 26, 2014

White on white

Look what greeted me this morning:

And WeatherBug indicated the snowfall would continue for a while:

Even though the temps were in the single digits, the wind was too, so it was not too bad out. I shoveled the front walk and back patio. The Best Neighbor in the World happens to live across the street from me. He blew my driveway yesterday, even though there was not much there, and I expect he will do the same today. (In fact, there he is now!)

To add insult to injury, I feel like I am coming down with a cold. That would explain the little headache I have been nursing for the past few days, plus my general lack of energy.

The cold temps this past week did not delay shipment of garden seeds. I could not help but wonder whether that was such a good idea. If the seeds don't germinate, I will complain.

Speaking of complaining, Finn is *not* amused by the cold and snow, keeps crying for more catnip. I guess his solution is to remain as stoned as possible for the duration.

If I lived in another state, I might consider that a viable option, too.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Make it so

I ordered seeds and plants for the garden today. A few weeks ago, I spent a day going through seed catalogs and cross referencing selections with recommendations from Eating on the Wild Side. Consequently, the to-buy list contained quite a few new varieties. I let the list marinate for a while before committing. Even though there is snow on the ground and another polar vortex predicted this week, I placed my order.

Most items were ordered from Pinetree. They upgraded their web site, making it too fancy in places, but generally okay. Besides garden stuff, they also sell soap making supplies, so if I ever decide to put my pseudo-training in soap making to work, I have a source.

Next up was an order from Seed Savers Exchange. As some may recall, the order I placed with them last year ran into issues. This time placing the order turned into a hassle. Since I was ordering plants AND seeds, I had to create two orders, presumably because of different shipping methods available to each. Maybe because they are a non-profit, they feel compelled to do it this way, but seriously? It's a pain.

The Abraham Lincoln tomato seed I want is available only from R.H. Shumway, so I placed an order with them where the shipping was more than the shipped item cost. This year sounds like a good time to try saving my own tomato seeds.

The last item to order was purple podded pole beans. Gurneys had them listed in their catalog, but when I tried to find them online, they were nowhere to be found. So, even though I was trying to avoid Burpee this year, I ended up ordering the beans from them. And paying a shipping charge greater than the seeds cost. Again.

Ordinarily, instead of paying the exorbitant shipping rates, I would have fiddled around with my selections, but I am already overwhelmed with decision-making for home renovations. So I am standing pat with the original list of seeds and plants. I hope they are worth the extra expense.

Thursday, January 09, 2014

This weather is for the birds

Very little open water on Tuesday

Birds not of a feather

More open water Wednesday

A murmuration of starlings

Is it spring yet?

Polar bear plunge sparrow style

Polar bear plunge starling style

Polar bear plunge blue jay style - NOT

Monday, January 06, 2014

Temperature is dropping

When I arose this morning, the temperature was -2. Now, several hours later, it is -8, but feels like -29 with the wind chill factored in. Tonight it is supposed to drop to -16. The office is closed today because this county is under a snow emergency. I don't work on Mondays, but I have already decided not to go in tomorrow - car might not start after a day in the parking lot. My SO is currently without a garage and his car won't start this morning. Time to just hunker down and bake pie.

My wonderful neighbor across the street has kept my driveway relatively clear, but I've had to work on the patio so the dog has some place to go. Not that she wants to go out at all. Even Finn seems resigned to staying inside. I may have to invest in a snow blower after all, just to clear pathways for her.

And to the bird feeders. I wore my tall boots when I went out to top them off this morning and the snow came up over the boot tops, all the way to my knees. I've never seen the heated birdbath not be able to keep up with the cold, either.

Time for pie.