Snow and Ice and frigid temps!

The pond is frozen and the warmer is maintaining a hole in the ice, a necessity to keeping the fish alive.

The walk with the dog was crisp and a bit icy, at least in looks. Yesterday’s snow has not melted completely and there are icy remnants of yesterday’s meteorological scene. From what I am hearing, we were less snow endowed than many parts of the country.

That is fine with me.

That is also not fine with me as one of my sons has a snow removal business, so it is his livelihood and it pleases me when nature is agreeable and does what it is supposed to do.

Stewart is a snow dog and loves nothing more than delicious cold weather and snow and ice to make it even more interesting.

I, on the other hand, have a real sense of fear and respect for that snow and ice, having taken a few tumbles here and there over the years. The bad part is that as we get older, we are less resilient and more prone to difficult reactions to these falls we take. I have had a few surprises walking with Stewie, the biggest one I ever had was where I was walking on the sidewalk and the unnoticed depression between sidewalk concrete squares harbored water, then ice, and was covered with a light coating of snow. That is the perfect recipe for a very fast fall. The only good thing for me was that it was so fast that I think my body did not tense up. Both Stewie and I fell simultaneously and I hit the back of my head. Luckily, I was wearing a wool cap that protected me.

I am more careful now and will avoid such situations in the future, as I don’t want to risk the broken bone issues.

For now, the weather is sunny and very, very cold, and we are soon to have a family outing to see Wicked!

Posted in Border Collie, Dogs, Life in general, Meteorology, Seasonal Transition, Seasons, Thoughts and philosophy | Leave a comment

Floral Issues

Note the flowers here and there on the forsythia bush.

I have had some crazy plant issues during the last few days, some of them a long time coming.

I have had Sharry Baby blooming, which helped a whole lot and then not only did I have a first sprig of blooms, a second one showed up on the same plant and then another pot of it that I had shot up a strange two inches of bloom.

My issues are with my long-standing Christmas cactus. It has looked okay but last year, for the first time, it didn’t bloom. I thought, perhaps, that it was due to the changes in the house temperatures in the wintertime, the way that we pull down the temperature during the night and all. In any case, I noticed that several branches of the plant were recently ‘wilting’ and I couldn’t figure out why. Upon closer inspection, I noticed that the base of the branches had pretty much disintegrated, apparently some sort of rot. I yanked them off and threw the base of the branches in water, hoping that maybe they will grow roots.

My other issue is my Peace Lily. I had put it in our bedroom, in a spot very limited for light. Apparently, it was too little because the lily, which had been doing fine, started to look less than great. I moved it to a brighter spot in the house and noticed that it continued to not do very well. On closer inspection, it seems that my watering, and more importantly the need to do some ‘repotting,’ was at fault. I thus need to attend to that.

My last issue is outdoors, the forsythia. It is confused. Just the other day, before the recent cold snap, it was blooming. I have seen it done before, but I was surprised given the fact that it really wasn’t that warm. The forsythia is as confused as the rest of us in this crazy world in which we live. Need I say more?

Posted in Flowers, Life in general, Plants, Thoughts and philosophy | Leave a comment

My morning canine adventure

We had had a sleepover and not only grandkids but also their dog Lincoln. We had a wonderful Friday evening culminating in a theatrical performance by the girls. The dogs were tentative at first, Lincoln being somewhat dramatic and not wanting to play with Stewart. He had been like that the last time they were together, which is not the way it was before. Add into that, they had gotten into a little food fight the last time, which only added to Lincoln’s concerns.

They ended up quickly getting over it and unable to stop playing. For the most part, it was playing that was okay in the house, but it involved rolling and mock biting each other. The funny thing is that Stewart was less of a perpetrator than he normally is; Lincoln, who gets tired faster, was incapable of relaxing for a long time.

When we went to bed, we were so exhausted that we didn’t even force them off our bed, which was there final destination, at least for a few hours. I have no idea how long they lasted there, but I can tell you that a queen size bed with two fifty-something pound dogs doesn’t have a lot of room for people.

The adventure, or misadventure as Mary Kay calls it, was when I went to move the cars into the street. Lincoln managed to slip by me in spite of the fact that I was keeping it open as little as possible. He ran out the door. He proceeded to gleefully run and went north and then south. I let Stewart out in the hopes that his herding ability might be put to use, it was, but Stewart was out for fun, a bit of canine carpe diem. It ended up that I chased them both for about a half a mile, all on the sidewalk, before returning home to get the car. Samantha and I went out and almost a mile away, we found them both corralled by a person out walking. Lincoln immediately got in the car and then Stewart did as well.

This was a bit more adventure than I wanted on a Saturday morning.

Posted in Border Collie, Dogs, Life in general, Thoughts and philosophy | Leave a comment

Early morning crankiness

Transitional times are hard on everyone, especially on the little ones as they change their routines to match the seasons and their situations. Our own children were lucky to be able to sleep in as they had a parent at home. Young people do not have the luxury of being able to do that with their kids.

It was in the twenties when Stewie and I took a walk and luckily, the wind had died down so that it didn’t really seem viciously cold.

The kids came over and despite the breakfast of fresh pancakes, orange, and sausage, they were not enamored of the idea of eating. They seemed tired from the get go and a lot of it had to do with not wanting to be snatched out of their warm beds and home to go somewhere else.

Given the cold and the lack of real desire to eat, it really seemed like the kids were tired, even that early in the morning. We were wondering how tough it was going to be to get to lunchtime and then if we were going to get any respite while they napped.

They went down for their naps early.

The littlest one slept for ninety minutes, the other slept for about three hours and she is close in age to dropping this nap. The youngest woke up and was literally screaming in my arms for ten or so minutes until he woke up and then started eating like there was no end. The rest of the day was pretty easy as they were both in a better mood and continued the non-stop feeding.

By 6:30 PM, we were all fed and MK and I settled down to getting back our house. It was a long day!

Posted in Grandchildcare, Grandkids, Life in general, Meteorology, Thoughts and philosophy | Leave a comment

The doggy window seat

When we redid the windows in 2005, we had no idea that the bay window we put in was actually for the dog. For whatever reason, it seemed that this window on the world was the perfect height for our dogs to look out. Ali (Denali) did and used it as a launch pad for her body throw at the window when the mailman came by. It was so bad that not only did I have to refinish the window seat that I had sanded and then given many coats of Tung oil. (Jack Denny, if you are reading this, please, no odd comments or inappropriate banter. You know that I would never do so!)

Each dog has been found standing on the window seat at some point in time.

Ali actually destroyed a screen in her interior attacks on the mailman. I had to use velcro to place a plexiglass screen against the screen to keep it safe. Stewart hasn’t done that, but both he and Ali managed to destroy the mini-blinds we had installed as window treatments. They finally bit the dust a few months ago, not only having bent slats, but falling prey to torn interior cords.

The blinds were removed yesterday and the window seat was grouted today, black, granite look tiles that I think are going to be slippery enough to annoy the crazy canine.

We shall see. I have been wrong before.

I am a bit annoyed that my choice of window treatments has to depend on a dog!

Posted in Border Collie, Life in general, Thoughts and philosophy | Leave a comment