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OGSG Archives > Winter 2012-2013

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Bloomin’Chick (Jo) aka The Eclectic Spoonie (bloominchick) Happy Solstice everyone!

Autumn didn't leave us without a fight. The weather turned ugly last night and isn't yet much improved. Over night we were drenched with rain and winds that reached 50mph for several hours, unfortunately leaving some in the dark again, before tapering off as the day has quickly gone by.

I am usually sad to see Autumn go, but, this year I'm ready to leave this one behind and move on!


message 2: by MissJessie (new)

MissJessie | 927 comments It hasn't been exactly inspirational this year. We have 3" of snow, but high winds and blowing snow making the roads slick. Not impossible, just pain in the rear. Except some big trees came down in town, luckily no damage to speak of. Just generally an ick type day.


message 3: by Cheryl S. (new)

Cheryl S. | 3501 comments We're blah and cold with about 8 inches of snow on the ground and probably no more before Christmas. Side roads and parking lots are glare ice--my fave.

Presents wrapped, cookies made so I'm almost ready to enjoy the holiday. Just a few more food items to prepare and then away we go!


Bloomin’Chick (Jo) aka The Eclectic Spoonie (bloominchick) No snow as of yet darn it but I'm finally getting excited for Christmas time! (Better late than never lol!) Happy Eve before Christmas Eve!


message 5: by MissJessie (new)

MissJessie | 927 comments Well, the latest forecast here is for "possible" 3-6 on Wednesday, Boxing Day.

As long as it's after noonish on Christmas Day, when we must go to visit the Mother unit, it's fine with me. I LOVE one good snowstorm a year, and we have enough food, wine, and firewood to last for the duration. I'm going Nowhere if it does but will feed the birds and enjoy.


message 6: by MissJessie (new)

MissJessie | 927 comments (and if it does, I'll save money not hitting the stores for the after Christmas sales :) )


Petra hugged a guy who got Covid next day. Oh dear (petra-x) My kid has come home from uni in Barbados for Christmas and is wearing a t-shirt as a scarf. He says it's cold here at night, it's about 74 I think! The gardener came and cleaned the grounds down to 1/2 of grass and the tobacco trees around 8' so everything is lovely and open.


Bloomin’Chick (Jo) aka The Eclectic Spoonie (bloominchick) We are at 39* with a winter storm advisory for later tonight until mid morning tomorrow! My Nature series dvd Christmas In Yellowstone from PBS.org has arrived & I'm so excited!

Happy Christmas Eve!


message 9: by Cheryl S. (new)

Cheryl S. | 3501 comments Merry Christmas to all!! We got about 1 inch of fresh sparkly snow overnight and have pure blue skies today so it looks beautiful outside. However the Polar Express is on it's way and we're expecting a frigid Christmas Day. No matter, we celebrate tonight so I can stay home tomorrow and snuggle in and go nowhere if I choose. Hope you all have great holidays!


Bloomin’Chick (Jo) aka The Eclectic Spoonie (bloominchick) Thank you Cheryl, the same to you and to all celebrating!


message 11: by MissJessie (new)

MissJessie | 927 comments We have a Winter Storm Warning from tomorrow night for either 4-8, 6-9, or sleet and ice, depending upon which model you follow. I'm hoping for the snow, not the ice. It'll be beautiful. Probably, though, nothing will happen, or it will rain; a frequent occurrence when apocalypse is predicted.

Merry Christmas to everyone appropriate, and happy life to everyone!!


message 12: by Cheryl S. (new)

Cheryl S. | 3501 comments Christmas Eve with the fam went a little different than I had planned. The kids and I snacked and opened gifts during the afternoon and then planned on going bowling or to a movie and then out for dinner. Unfortunately one of my kidney stones decided to go on an adventure that day so after gift opening I came home and hit the couch. Even tho I didn't get to finish out the day as planned it was still a good day.


Bloomin’Chick (Jo) aka The Eclectic Spoonie (bloominchick) Cheryl, I have kidney stones often, I know how not fun they are! Glad you had a good Christmas Eve despite it!

Christmas Eve was lovely, Christmas Day a little stressful because of the family factor lol but a good day.

Now we're in the process of getting 2"s of rain here on the coast while our northern home gets 6"s of snow (or more) and ice later. The wind is roaring out there, gusting over 50mph again. Nasty night!


message 14: by Cheryl S. (new)

Cheryl S. | 3501 comments We're having lite snow this evening and through the night. Just wish it would warm up enough to melt the ice in my driveway. My neighbor and I are referring to it as "The Danger Zone".


Bloomin’Chick (Jo) aka The Eclectic Spoonie (bloominchick) That nor'easter pounded us! We got 5 inches of rain here on the coast (not the 1-2"s forecasted) and have had more damage from it than the hurricane here. 7 basements flooded, including ours, and we had water pouring in around the top of our patio door in the kitchen which has never happened before. Locally, areas flooded that just began rebuilding since the hurricane and the closest bridge is now closed indefinitely because of a landslide!

Snow storm tomorrow!


message 16: by Cheryl S. (new)

Cheryl S. | 3501 comments Snowed for almost 24 hours and in total we got maybe 2 inches. At times the sun was visible through the clouds while it was snowing. Nice to have the dirty snow get a fresh sparkly coat.


Petra hugged a guy who got Covid next day. Oh dear (petra-x) I can imagine that, a sparkly powder of snow in the sunlight. Lovely.


message 18: by Cheryl S. (new)

Cheryl S. | 3501 comments Petra X wrote: "I can imagine that, a sparkly powder of snow in the sunlight. Lovely."

We had the same lite snow again today but no sun and the temp is really dropping. Often times it will be bitterly cold here over the New Year Holiday. Years ago I went to a New Years party with a nice guy who runs a wild flower nursery and drives a big pickup truck. When we came out of the party to go home the dash in his truck had cracked down the middle from the cold.


message 19: by MissJessie (new)

MissJessie | 927 comments Have you considered a move to a more equitable climate ! :)

We had another 3" last nite/today, more a nuisance than anything else. But everything is the same off-white color--sky, snow, cars, air -- I hate that. Very depressing to the spirit.

I went to the antique all today for a couple of hours to escape==no windows, just opportunities to spend money. I'm looking for a small bookcase and of course, no luck. But it was pleasant.


Petra hugged a guy who got Covid next day. Oh dear (petra-x) MissJessie wrote: "Have you considered a move to a more equitable climate ! :)..."

I considered it, and did!

Before Christmas I had the tobacco trees cut down to about 8', just bare broken-off spikes of wood, not neatly pruned. Now they are grown over completely with leaves and look prettier. There is a tree just out of phone camera distance which is about 50' high and winding the way up through the leaves is a beautiful red-violet morning glory vine just bursting with flowers. A little drive along the road is a wild shrub with fluffy white blossoms, it's only about 3' tall and the blossoms are like powdered snow and another kind of morning glory vine is twining through it showing bright pink flowers here and there. Very beautiful and a little reminiscent of a snowy roadside.


Bloomin’Chick (Jo) aka The Eclectic Spoonie (bloominchick) We ended up with just a dusting here on the coast from yesterday's 'snow storm' but it was so lovely & peaceful standing outside in the yard last night as the snow fell. Total zen moment for me! Today we're cold with *another* wind advisory! About 35* but feels like 24* with the wind chill. Beautiful sunny day though!


message 22: by Sheila (new)

Sheila Petra X wrote: "A little drive along the road is a wild shrub with fluffy white blossoms, it's only about 3' tall and the blossoms are like powdered snow and another kind of morning glory vine is twining through it showing bright pink flowers here and there. Very beautiful and a little reminiscent of a snowy roadside. "

This sounds beautiful, Petra, and I love how you describe it so poetically.


message 23: by Cheryl S. (new)

Cheryl S. | 3501 comments As predicted we're heading into the deep freeze tonight, probably 5 to 10 degrees below zero. I don't care because I'm staying home for a quiet safe evening. Have a stack of new garden catalogs to look through, plan to make a favorite snack for later and probably be in bed long before the ball drops. Ah my exciting life!

As for moving, I really can't imagine living anywhere else after all these years in this climate. I love all the seasonal changes and I know how to deal with the cold--mostly by staying out of it. Now that I'm retired when the weather acts up I can just stay home and wait till it's better.


message 24: by Cheryl S. (new)

Cheryl S. | 3501 comments As usual the weather predictors will a little off the mark for last night. It was actually -20 when I got up this AM. As previously noted I didn't really care as I had no plans to go anywhere. It's warmed up considerably during the day and we may go above freezing towards the end of the week. It always feels like a heat wave when that happens.


Bloomin’Chick (Jo) aka The Eclectic Spoonie (bloominchick) Well below freezing recently but I've still got Snapdragons blooming and about to bloom on the front porch! They've been going for 9 months now, I can't believe it!


message 26: by peg (new)

peg (mcicutti) | 419 comments Snapdragons! LOL. I don't think that nature has gotten the message that winter is here, Jo. My area has finally gotten snow and nights are below freezing but I have several robins hanging out in my back yard and I am still picking rosemary and sage. My curry is going strong too. According to accuweather, we are heading for the 50s next week, It's crazy.


message 27: by Cheryl S. (new)

Cheryl S. | 3501 comments Jo wrote: "Well below freezing recently but I've still got Snapdragons blooming and about to bloom on the front porch! They've been going for 9 months now, I can't believe it!"

That's crazy!! I never knew they could withstand cold temps. They must be in their own little micro climate on your porch.


message 28: by Cheryl S. (new)

Cheryl S. | 3501 comments We might, I say might, get above freezing this week-end. I sure hope so because I would love to get rid of a bunch of the ice in front of my garage.


message 29: by peg (new)

peg (mcicutti) | 419 comments I don't envy you,Cheryl. Sounds like you could use a mid-winter thaw.


Bloomin’Chick (Jo) aka The Eclectic Spoonie (bloominchick) The funny thing is that I've never been able to keep Snapdragons alive past Spring and here they are, 9 momnths later still going strong!


Bloomin’Chick (Jo) aka The Eclectic Spoonie (bloominchick) Hope all is well for everyone!


message 32: by Lori (new)

Lori | 1 comments Here in the Mid-Atlantic we still have moths and other small bugs flying around. We could use a few weeks of some good cold weather or the pests are going to be awful this gardening season.


message 33: by Petra hugged a guy who got Covid next day. Oh dear (last edited Jan 13, 2013 07:33AM) (new)

Petra hugged a guy who got Covid next day. Oh dear (petra-x) Literally two minutes ago, I was just scared totally utterly and every swearword you can think of out of my mind. Right next to me on the arm of the sofa was a HUGE red-legged tarantula. I mashed it up with the tv remote, and now I am going to make a cup of tea. (Can you tell I'm British? lol)

It is cold here, I was wearing a proper long-sleeved jumper (sweater?) all day yesterday. It was grey, cloudy, windy, raining at times, proper rainforest weather but the temperature was only about 69-71 and it seems to have done the mosquitos in but not the horrible spiders. Enough. Time for tea.

Edit: I just looked it up for a picture. It's not the furry ones though we do have them, it's a sort of naked variety and perhaps not what is a real tarantula although that is what they are called locally.


message 34: by peg (last edited Jan 13, 2013 09:50AM) (new)

peg (mcicutti) | 419 comments Yikes! You were brave to kill it, Petra. I don't know what I would have done.

My son had a pet tarantula when he was young. I didn't mind it while it was in the aquarium but I didn't want to be in the room when he would take it out. I swear it made eye contact when I got close. That thing lived a long time.

I come from a long line of Irishmen. A cup of tea is definitely in order:-)


Petra hugged a guy who got Covid next day. Oh dear (petra-x) If it had been one of the furry ones with yellow eyes that stare at you - yeah, they do definitely make eye contact - I would not have been at all brave and don't know what I would have done. Probably tried to sic the cat on it, this cat enjoys hunting and killing so she might have helped out. If she could be bothered. Otherwise... OMG

What did your son do with tarantula? Stroke it (shivers)? Let it crawl all over him (worse shivers)? Or.... I can't imagine having a spider alive in my presence let alone keeping one as a pet.


message 36: by MissJessie (new)

MissJessie | 927 comments Tarantulas aren't poisonous, just damn scary looking. No interest WHATSOEVER in having one as a pet. We knew someone once who kept a boa constrictor as a pet, equally revolting. But she was seriously weird anyway.

I Hate Wolf spiders, which are common enough around here. Big hairy ugly looking things that scare the hell out of me. Luckily, not much in my house. Little spiders in the house I just move to the plants since they eat other bugs, or so I hope. Or in the summer put them outside. Big ones I dispose of, with regret. I dislike killing things, roaches and Wolf spiders excepted. Luckily, we haven't had them in this house. Yet.

When we had a greenhouse spiders were of course a common occurrence; didn't like the great big garden spiders, though they are beautiful. But if they stayed in the greenhouse, I let them be. If they moved into the house, my husband would move them for me.

But some god-awful giant bug (like 1.5 inches long, vaguely roach shaped marched out from under the dishwasher last month. It had a very short life span. Luckily, no repeats. Living in the woods makes for lots of outdoor spiders, all around the eves. I knock down the webs periodically but they come back. But I figure they are living where they should be and try to be tolerant.


message 37: by Cheryl S. (last edited Jan 13, 2013 04:47PM) (new)

Cheryl S. | 3501 comments I could deal with the spider and bugs don't bother me, but if it had been a snake I would probably still be screaming. You are very brave, Petra. Once in a great while I see a spider in the house, but they are mostly very small and not threatening. The biggest spiders we have around here, at least that I have seen, are orb weavers. They make a huge web and are bright yellow and black. One made a web over my outdoor faucet a few years ago and I didn't have the heart to rip his work apart so I carted water from a different source for a while until a storm took care of the spider web and he didn't rebuild or reweave as it were.


Petra hugged a guy who got Covid next day. Oh dear (petra-x) The god-awful giant bug was a cockroach, mahogany bird. A big one. Disgusting creature. I don't mind orb spiders, we have them here too but they never come indoors and are interesting-looking, rather than scary.

I don't mind snakes. I only know two around here, small boas, don't seem them very often and grass snakes. If the cat brings them in the kitchen, I pick them up and throw them out. Funny feeling, like a little finger, warm and floppy, no bone. I also don't like killing things.

Excepting mosquitos and roaches. With regret I occasionally kill crickets because there have been so many in the house this winter and I don't like them creeping around and making me jumpy. But I try and sweep them out mostly.


message 39: by MissJessie (new)

MissJessie | 927 comments True about mosquitos. They perish when indoors. Somehow I don't associate them being alive, if you see what I mean.


Petra hugged a guy who got Covid next day. Oh dear (petra-x) To tell truth I quite enjoy it when I swat a mosquito exactly on. And if I mash it up on my skin and there is a drop of blood, I am really pleased to kill it.

But, seriously, in general I don't like killing things. I don't kill moths, I lift tree frogs and lizards outside, just there are exceptions which I really can't justify but there you go.


message 41: by peg (last edited Jan 13, 2013 08:43PM) (new)

peg (mcicutti) | 419 comments Petra, my son would let the tarantula crawl on his arms and he would let it run around on the floor in a confined area. The worst part was that it ate live crickets so my son had to keep live chirping crickets in a box. Maybe you need a pet tarantula for cricket control :-)

As long as it wasn't on the loose, I have to admit, I found the thing a bit fascinating. When it molted, the old exterior of the bug looked exactly like the live tarantula.The first time it happened, I thought that he had purchased a second tarantula.

That kid had every kind of creepy thing imaginable at one time or another. He was always sneaking some type of animal up to his room. We had tropical fish, insects in jars, small snakes (nothing harmful), hamsters, wild bunnies, hermit crabs, and an iguana that grew too big to keep. Not to mention the token cats and kittens. He drove me crazy.

Since my kids have grown up, I only have 2 cats (that my kids left behind when they left home) and tropical fish. That is plenty!


Petra hugged a guy who got Covid next day. Oh dear (petra-x) Do tarantulas have (I feel stupid asking this question) personalities or get to know people or do anything other than act as malevolent-looking giant insects?

I've had hermit crabs. I wrote about Blue here http://www.goodreads.com/story/show/2... I've never had an iguana but then they are wild here. Some of them grow up to 4' long. They are really active creatures, climb trees, cross roads, run around a lot, but when they are put in cages they almost stop moving. I think that has led people to think that they are happy in a cage, but I think they are just very depressed.


message 43: by peg (new)

peg (mcicutti) | 419 comments Petra, I'm not sure about whether or not the tarantula had a personality but it's behaviors were interesting. For instance, it wouldn't eat while we were watching. We would put a cricket in the tank and it wouldn't even get near the cricket until it thought we were gone. As I said, it made eye contact. I had the feeling it was watching us as much as we watched it.

The iguana never stopped growing. My son let it out of the cage every day. He even took it outside to walk around in the grass. I suppose that is why it grew like it did. More than once, it escaped and I found it sunning on the curtain rod in the window. One day while I was sitting downstairs with a cup of tea, I heard some commotion. When I looked up. the iguana was running down the steps being chased by our cat. That was an interesting chase. Those things really run fast.


message 44: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Comeau (kimberlykcomeau) | 299 comments Peg, you tell great stories. I love the cat chasing the iguana. I can so picture that! How funny.


message 45: by peg (last edited Jan 14, 2013 09:06AM) (new)

peg (mcicutti) | 419 comments Kimberly, that is only half of that story. The day that the cat chased the iguana, my son was being tutored in our home by an esteemed chemistry teacher from our local high school who had also been my teacher in the past. I had always been in awe of him and was honored that he was willing to tutor my son. The iguana made his famous escape during one of the tutoring sessions. When I saw how fast that thing was running, I needed help to keep the cat at bay. Reluctantly, I interrupted the session and asked my son for help. Out of respect for his teacher, my son refused to help me. So while the teacher and his student proceeded to balance chemical equations, I was frantically running from room to room donned in huge leather gardening gloves in pursuit of the iguana. (I didn't like to touch the iguana with bare hands). The teacher never acknowledged what took place. He just focused on the subject at hand.
What a humbling experience!


message 46: by MissJessie (new)

MissJessie | 927 comments Well, there are two ways to look at it :)
1. The teacher was so focused on his subject as to never notice outside distractions.
2. The teacher wanted no part of iguana catching, and decided to ignore the whole thing.

I favor the latter myself.


message 47: by peg (new)

peg (mcicutti) | 419 comments I think you are right, MissJessie :-)


message 48: by Cheryl S. (new)

Cheryl S. | 3501 comments Animal stories always tickle me. They just follow their nature and never mind what their human thinks they should do.


message 49: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Comeau (kimberlykcomeau) | 299 comments LOL, Peg! What a day you had! Thank you so much for completing the story. It's apparent that the teacher was accustomed to a high school setting and the hijinks that occur there. What a classy gentleman.


message 50: by Florence (Lefty) (new)

Florence (Lefty) MacIntosh Great story Peg, I can see it feeling rather humbling (being ignored and all)chasing that iguana around. I've a horror of spiders, you are braver than me, I could not handle a tarantula staring at me! I deal with it far better than when I was younger, in fact I'm actually even okay with them when I'm working in the garden. In the house is another story. I've woken up with spider bites, the idea of them running over me while I'm asleep completely freaks me out.


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