Sunday, December 30, 2007

Winter Settles In to Stay

Alas, winter is truly here for the next 3 months. We are waiting for the next storm to arrive. Fresh snow to welcome the New Year. Next year I hope to welcome the New Year from a warmer part of the country - without snow or ice. I worry to much about mundane things: will the oil last through March; will the propane last another two weeks (I've given up getting through the winter on one tank of propane); how far can I stretch 1 and half cords of wood; how do I prevent slipping on the ice; why is the gas mileage dropping in my car. It all pulls at the edges of any serenity I manage to gather. It is pretty outside, even it is inhospitable.

This frost laden land is helping me to shape out my New Years Resolutions: learn to play poker; join the book club when it restarts in February; organize my office; & exercise 30 minutes a day (zero to thirty is an improvement) and practice drawing 30 minutes a day. There are a couple of others but that's enough to ponder for the moment. Why the goals for 2008...reasons to move forward in spite of the snow.

I've made peace with this old wood stove. One small hot fire a day to burn off the creosote. Then a long slow burn. The insulation in the basement seems to be helping. This New Years will be a good test as the temperature is suppose to change again.

One person, Lonely Wombat has a great list of things to do to survive winter. Here's the blog: I'm searching for a good lava lamp. I also loved the flick'r site she recommended. Take a look!

Friday, December 21, 2007

tree in hiding

This has been a very snowy December! It has transformed the woods that surround the house. It also functions as an icy muffler. The silence of the night here is deep and profound. I find myself wondering how I ever managed to sleep when I lived a city.
This quiet belies the frantic pace I run into when I rejoin the work world each morning, Monday through Friday. I've not put a single holiday decoration in the house. It would be a poor showing compared to careless, accidental sophistication of the snow-filled woods. As I listen to my co-workers chat about the stress of the season and the shopping to be done, I feel a smug satisfaction in not having to participate in the bustle. I wish everyone good cheer but I would not trade a moment of the silent celebration in the woods.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

The Sunday Nor'Easter

Woke to a blizzard in progress! I have to remember to pick up a holiday gift for the plow man. He's already been here once. I've shoveled the walked several times and still have had to shove the back door open against the piling snow. I've been listening to the tv news. Here's something of note from the broadcasts - many churches cancelled services but the Pat's game is still on and people are going to be there. Some drivers gave themselves 5 hours to make it to the stadium! Ah New England!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Calm Before the Storm

We've had a couple of gentle storms. The photo is taken on the commute home. Tonight we are expecting an old fashioned Nor'Easter. Sleet, snow, ice, and high winds. It is -4F with the wind chill now. Should be quite something in a few more hours. This is why someone was inspired to make snowblowers! A good night for surfing the net and investingation warm weather destination vacations.

Okay, the truth is I'm planning a trip to Alaska - but that will be in the summer. But if I could afford two trips one would be so some delight island surrounded by warm water. Bliss.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

winter birds, apples and work

It has been a gray week.
Work was particularly difficult. Had a terrible state survey. No where to go but up. Many staff tensions -the building is newly organized with a bargaining unit. I hear there is a petition to have me removed from my job. Not the sort of thing that makes one want to jump out of bed and rush into work with great excitement. Never-the-less, in I must go and do my best to fix the problems.

Tye was sick all night. This dog gets panicky and starts to eat everything. The house hold finally settled down to sleep about 4:30 AM this morning. AM keeping him kenneled through the rest of the day until he and his sensitive stomach settle down.

We're expecting more stormy weather tonight. Emptied the ash from the wood stove, the logs are stacked and now - wait for sleet and snow. Have filled the bird feeders. It is amazing that the delicate chickadees survive the rigors of winter. No matter how bleak my work life, I do love their cheery chirping. Surly if these tiny creatures carry on in adverse condition - I can face my work woes as well.

I am however engaged in a fantasy of moving back to Washington state or now and then New Mexico. I would prefer the drizzle of Washington State to the sleet of New England. For now it is a pipe-dream. Moving is very expensive. This facility needs to be 'fixed' and it is in general best to wait out the looming and growing housing crisis.

Have a variation of chicken (my apologies to all birds in general) soup in the slow cooker. The aroma is heavenly. The small joys in life.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

thinking about silence

Have finally faced my studio. Why does the blank page continue to constitute an almost insurmountable first step? Had to haul out the mental 6 foot ladder to climb over my own mind. Project now underway. Am thinking about silence. Considering deliberate silencing, soothing silence and almost silent (the type one finds in the forest).

Easy Silence Dixie Chicks By PAntunes

Saturday, December 1, 2007

The Plow Man Cometh!

Snow last tonight. Sleet on Sunday and predictions of 6" of snow on Monday. Bless the snow plow guy! He just called - as panic was beginning to creep into my mind. The wind is blustering outside my window. How I wish I did not have to go get mail today. Staying huddled near the fire sounds just about perfect. I have a stack of books to read. Ah well, time to bundle and wrap up to face the wind chill factor....6 degrees F. Today is a good day to buy a lottery ticket - I will engage in a warm weather fantasy until the fateful drawing tonight!