Holiday Weather

Refreshed. It’s nice to take a blog break sometimes. For a while, I scaled down attention to world headlines, stepped away from a few duties, and devoted attentions and energies to more welcome pleasures…. friends and family. I call it the Great Diversion that involved a bit of travel, important dates with a 3-yr. old, reading books, some Christmas shopping, movie watching, dining out, and brief community duties.

Now it’s December and Santa has replaced the pumpkins and turkeys at our home, but thoughts of Thanksgiving linger.  My daughter nearby hosts Thanksgiving and most of the fixings and we supply several sides for the meal. A year ago she switched from one HUGE turkey to two smaller ones. We all agreed they were easier to roast side by side and fun to prepare using different methods. This year, it was the buttermilk-brined turkey that got the thumbs up over the salt-brined. Pssst: both were delicious!

Thanksgiving 2019

Two of our adult children and their children are heading home today… the most traveled day of the year. One family spent the holiday in Philadelphia with their son at a Meet The Parents event. Pssst: She’s absolutely adorable and so are her parents! All good…

The other family spent the holiday week at a family place on Hilton Head Island where the weather cooperated with sunshine and warmth and lots of beach days. Their excitement was the resident corn snake, a docile and benign snake, that visited their home all week. Thank goodness they respect and admire snakes like I do. All good….

Hilton Head Corn Snake 2019

Today both families will venture home by car while a powerful swath of wintry precipitation will disrupt travel for them. They will cross paths at some point… one to northeast Ohio and the other to Louisville Kentucky after driving to Indiana to return one of our grandchildren to college. This kind of travel is definitely for the young!

The storm’s path will lead it straight to New Hampshire this very Sunday afternoon with a long duration snowstorm. Our weather apps tell us to expect significant snowfall, perhaps bringing blizzard conditions until Tuesday. This may mean a cancellation of a community event I’m involved with to decorate the Exeter Historic Society building for Christmas. I’ve stocked up on hot chocolate for a two or three day hibernation at home. All good….

 

Blizzard 2015 Visits New England

A week ago, I spoke a little too soon about needing some snow in New Hampshire. This week the January 2015 blizzard came to town. The snow started on Tuesday and never stopped. When all was said and done on Wednesday morning, we officially had 25+ inches on the ground in Exeter…. however, high winds whipped snow, swirled snow, and piled snow in every nook and cranny creating mountains you could get lost in. Beautiful to watch from the window with a crackling fire, a fine cup of java, and two good books to take me far away.

To give you an idea of the Great Dig Out, here is my grandson with his dog following along as his parents forged a path to their mailbox in Portsmouth, a city that received a whopping 31 inches of snow, according to local news.

Drew on Path

And this is how they found the mailbox, buried by the snowplows under several feet of snow. More dig out…

Mail Box in PortsmouthIn Exeter, mister gardener dug a series of deep trenches to the bird feeders trying to keep our feathered friends well-fed for the duration of the storm. All birdseed we scattered atop the snow was completely covered within minutes.

birdprintsBefore the storm hit, we built a small snowman with available snow on the deck railing.  The snows of ‘Juno’ began and we were certain it would be the end of Mister Snowman.Our small Snowman But he withstood the whipping winds of the blizzard. We found him standing upright in the morning although he’d lost an arm and had transformed into Mr. Conehead with a cape.snowman2Very slowly over the next three days, our little man began to lean more and more until he finally toppled and expired late today.

The cleanup continues in New Hampshire with two more winter snowstorm warnings on the horizon. We are ready for them, but not for another threat that emerged this morning. Icicles can possibly foreshadow the dreaded…. ICE DAMS …..identical to the one that caused a leak around our skylight last winter! Yikes! Give me a good snowstorm any day!

icicles

First Blizzard of 2014

Portsmouth NHA blizzard is on the way for New Hampshire tonight. I always check the live webcam in Portsmouth NH to see updated conditions in the area. It’s a beautiful sight right now with traffic and street lights. Click on the photo to enlarge it and get the full appreciation of a snowy city with motorists hurrying home for the night.

The camera snaps a photo every couple of minutes on Market Square. This scene was captured at 4:30 p.m., just minutes ago.

We are snug and warm and staying home overnight. Tomorrow we are supposed to be keeping our daughter’s pooch as she and her family are scheduled to fly to Michigan to visit her in-laws. Somehow I don’t think that will happen…

Monster Blizzard or Not?

With Nor’easter Nemo bearing down on us, mister gardener said perhaps I should remove my last blog post entitled, “It’s Snow Wonder I Like New Hampshire.” He said I might feel differently about snow after the weekend. I chuckled at the time but later I considered his suggestion. With predicted amounts changing by the hour for the coastal region of New Hampshire, we are still unsure whether we will have 24″…. or 32″ as we heard one forecaster announce tonight. Cancellations are streaming across the television and on the radio. By 9 pm, schools and colleges, 2,933 flights, businesses, functions and events have been canceled or postponed. The entire area is shutting down for perhaps historical amounts of snow.

The Great Blizzard of ’78, Boston

We shopped today for all the survival necessities found on everyone’s lists, then dined out tonight. Native New Englanders, clerks, checkers, baggers, waiters, with whom we exchanged greetings throughout the day, seemed nervous. These hardy, robust, resilient natives who normally take everything in stride, expressed real concerns about Elmo. The 1978 snow-mageddon was all the talk today…. the storm with 80 mph winds that left 10 foot drifts, flooded homes, stranded motorists, tons of debris, collapsed roofs, and 99 New Englanders dead. We knew about the storm 35 years ago but mister gardener and I were unaware of the extent of damage the storm caused.

With our minds changed about this potentially crippling storm barreling down on us, we nervously decided to re-check our survival to-do list tonight. Water… check.  Batteries…. check. Groceries….. check. Dry firewood…. check. Snow shovel…. check.  iPad, iPhones charged…. check. Bird feeders filled…. check. Laundry washed…. check.  Autos fueled…. check. Blankets…. check.

How will I spend the days secluded at home beneath drifts of snow? I hope to hibernate, keep my toes warm in front of a fire in the fireplace, hot chocolate in a mug, a good book on iPad. Whether we have total white-out conditions with hurricane-force winds or not, I’d like to block out the dangers of the storm that twists and turns and howls outside. The drapes might be closed for this snowstorm.