Tag Archive: winter



woody

It has been a few gloomy days here on Sunrise Ridge, fog, rain, more fog and more rain.

This morning the sun peeped out for a few minutes, then heavy clouds returned.

All that, and the appearance of one majestic pileated woodpecker, laughing loudly as he flew by. In a rare mood, this bird sat long enough to allow me to take his portrait.

His visit and a bit of sunshine, did a lot to sweeten the day

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We have been visited by winter. Last week, 8.5 inches of snow and then about 3 inches of fine sleet.

The sleet has compacted to a great layer of very slikc ice, thick enough that my 130 pounds will not crack through the crust..

This morning, with temperature hovering around 10 degrees, it fell to me to take water to the kennels and check on the chickens. Not a difficult task on most days and one I have done many, many times in the past. Dressing for the weather, in high top boots, heavy coat, fur hat, I picked up my water jugs and stepped out.

The porch and stairs, nicely cleared due to the efforts of Hubby and Brett was no problem, nor about the first 20 steps across the glacier that was once our yard.

Then, Right foot went one way and left went another as I tried some sort of ice skating move! There was not grace, no beauty in my loss of traction, water spilling from the jugs just made the whole situation worse!

I found myself resting on the ice, on the well padded portion of my body, wondering ‘what now’?

Simply put, I was uninjured (if you don’t count my pride) but never the less in a mess! No way could I get up on that slick stuff, I would have to crawl to something to use to get up!  Sudden realization that my gloves were inside was not  pleasant knowledge. Sliding across the layer of water covered ice, I was remembered all the safety rules – not quite soon enough!

I made it to the dog pens, got back on my feet, carefully made my way back to refill the jugs and started over, with a walking stick in hand.

Soon the task was complete, the animals cared for and yes, now the gloves are in my coat pocket!

Feb. 20 National Hooty Hoo day


Hooty-hoo day : Go outside at noon, wave your arms and yell, “Hooty-Hoo”. This is supposed to scare away  Old Man Winter.

So I donned proper attire for the 11 degree wind chill, coat, boots, furry hat and my trademark pink gloves, and did my part.

It may not have been effective, sleet and freezing rain fell from late afternoon through the night, leaving a sick and treacherous coating atop the previous blanket of snow.


I walk into the kitchen for more coffee.
Hubby greets me with “It’s 2 below right now.”
“And you think I want to know that?” is my reply.

And it doesn’t really matter, the weather is something we have and can only accept.

Outside my window, sunshine, a few clouds zip across the bright blue sky in the wind.

Cardinals fluffed out to keep warm, stick close to the feeder and preen a bit in the sun.

I think, I can choose to grumble about the cold, or enjoy what is given to me outside that window.

I am warm, cozy and being treated to a lovely view. Things to be happy about, many do not have even this simple pleasure.

The mail brings catalogs of garden seed, poultry and crafts to contemplate over the coming days. Winter will pass.

Daylight arrives a bit earlier and lingers longer, Spring will come , it always does. All is well!


Ice fog settled over Sunrise Ridge during the night. White coats gently wrap branches, waiting for the sun to come over our hilltop. Then my world will be filled with brilliant jewels!

High clouds and blue sky promise some sunshine for the up-coming day.

Diamonds, rubies, emeralds, sapphires will sparkle from the branches in the sunlight.
I love  mornings like this – especially when I can stay inside to enjoy it. Sometimes I have to wish for a ‘pirate chest’ to store them up.

It’s a big blessing today, this month has been so overcast that a sunny morning by itself s a great joy.


Sitting here inside, looking out my window. The only signs of spring I see are colorful birds flocking to feed. Sunrise Ridge is covered in icy sleet about 3 inches deep.
Only a week ago, temperatures were in the 50 and 60 degree range. Some outdoor chores were done.
We separated some plants off the ‘mother’ blueberry bush and got them in new spots. Well mulched, hope they survived the weekend storm.
One of the ‘babies’ didn’t have much root, so I brought it in and stuck it in a bucket of water in a south window. Roots are filling the bucket and this morning discovered tiny green leaves coming out. Yes, there is hope!
It has been a long winter, and the return of robins, green growing things even inside) and sunshine is a blessing.
In the not far away future, the snow and ice will go away, as it has for millions of years.
Today, I rejoice in that fact!

winter travel


I know a little bit about this subject, having lived in New Hampshire for 10 years. I managed to avoid any of the weatherly consequences, but I always went prepared, blanket, flashlight, some snackable food and water, just in case.
You never know and it’s a lot nicer to unload it from the car than have frostbite or worse.
Today, I heard about a young mother who had a flat tire in our sub zero wind chill and decided to take her kids and walk home…
Thankfully, a neighbor happened by and got them to their destination.
I can’t get out of my mind how this could have gone so horribly wrong and thank God for their safety thisevening.


If you counted the presents for my birthday, or what was wrapped up under the tree, it looked pretty meager.
If you count the well wishes, cards and calls, the family time, the home made food and cake, it’s a whole different story!
Hubby kidnapped me one day last week for an adventure with the camera. Hiking through snow near Current River, watching wildlife and exploring old buildings. A picnic lunch and ‘time’ to rnjoy the world of winter together.
No, no one took me out to eat, son-in-law made lasagna and the grandkids made a cake.
birthday 006
Family time, visiting, playing checkers and mancala, sharing thoughts, ideas, laughter, plans and love.
No one got me anything fancy or expensive, but I was very pleased to get craft supplies that will be used and are a pay it forward. More than likely someone else will end up with the things that will be made from them.
I did not make a Christmas dinner, we gathered for a pot of chili on Christmas eve, and enjoyed a dinner made by our daughter and grand daughter on Christmas day.
I don’t need a lot of ‘things’ anymore. I can count my blessings, be grateful for what I have and be very content with it. I am blessed and life for us on Sunrise Ridge is good.


Yesterday, I mentioned that I was making chili because I was expecting a house full of company. There were some requests for the recipe, so here it is.
I cook up 4 cups of pinto beans, with no seasonings.
When the beans are tender and the broth still pretty thin, turn them off.
Fry 1 lb. hamburger meat and 1 cup chopped onion until meat is done and onions translucent.
Add to the beans along with a 28 oz. can of Rotel diced tomatoes with green chilis for mild chili or Rotel tomatoes with jalapenos for more kick, salt and chili powder to taste.
Add a cup of chunky salsa (optional).
Let that simmer slow until it is as thick as you like your chili.

If chili is too spicy for your taste topping with cheese helps to tone down the ‘bite’.
This made about a gallon of chili. Everyone except Hubby thought it was great, he thought it needed more chili powder. What does he know?


Hamster size snow flakes are drifting down this morning, certainly a lot more like winter than spring. I felt a need for ‘comfort food’. Wondering what to make, so I pulled out some of my old cookbooks.
In some of these, finds from auctions, yard sales and given to me by family and friends, there are notes.
“Jeff really liked this”, prods me to try a recipe.
“Think it needs more spices”, and I ask myself if a teaspoon of cinnamon is enough.
Some have instructions for double or triple the recipes and notes on a church dinner or “Made this for Charlie’s visit”.
I came across recipe cards written in my mothers lovely hand, Aunt Jo’s scrawl, and a few in Gram’s looped old-fashioned script bring back precious memories and bittersweet thoughts of days past.
There were others and I will admit more than one tear fell as I traveled to kitchens I had not been to for years and ‘tasted’ treats made with love and shared with joy.
Now, I am off to the kitchen here on Sunrise Ridge, to attempt to replicate a few of them.