I'm home today because overnight we got rain that turned to sleet and then to sheer ice covering the sidewalks. I made it as far as the end of my driveway, slipping a few times, and knew there was no way I could safely walk the half mile to the bus stop to get to work. A gal my age has to keep herself safe, first and foremost. Taking a spill on the ice at 63 isn't something I take lightly. If I went down and seriously injured myself -- don't even want to think about it.
Anyway, it's dank, dark and dreary out there; the ice is slowly melting but still not 100% gone.
Soon I'll be looking for cardinals online and printing out some vertical prints to replace the autumn-toned prints in the frames flanking the patio door. In this photo is the centerpeice of live greens with a scented candle that I've purchased the past few years from the Boy Scouts. Candy is held in a glass dish in the shape of a Christmas tree (but the overflowing candy obscures the small dish's shape), framed cardinal greeting card in the background; the copper framed cardinal greeting card has since been replaced with my red, white and black Northwood Cottage cardinal plate; a cardinal snow globe in the shape of a lantern, and my first greeting card of the season. Resting atop one the largest wood cannister in the background is a little votive holder, Mama snowman and little boy snowman, peering into the "fire." I tried to get a close-up of it but none of them turned out (too blurry and shaky).
Love this cardinal plate, found at TJ Maxx some years ago.
Squirrels and birds abound in this household.
Another framed cardinal greeting card -- do you see the pair -- one on the park bench, one on the snow next to it?
The main floor bathroom received some Christmas cheer, too:
April 6, 2019:
The income taxes are finished and were taken to the Post Office yesterday to send out via certified mail, which now costs nearly $16 for two 8 1/2 11 envelopes with return receipt. Yikes! But worth it because I have proof positive once I get the little green cards back that the returns were delivered and received. And just in case, there are tracking numbers that I can also tap the U.S. Post Office for to verify that delivery was made. In these times, it's better to be safe than sorry
I have been working in little bits and pieces outdoors whenever a window in our crappy weather has presented itself. Today, however, was the first day where I was able to spend an extended period of time outside. First, I cleaned up areas on the sidewalk and driveway along the edges where pine cones and branches tiny branches blown off during the seemingly wind storms we endured over fall and winter 2018-2019. After resting for a bit, and removing the winter hat, gloves and jacket, I moved to the back yard because I'm sick of feeling sick to my stomach every time I look at it through the patio doors in the dining room and window above the kitchen sink. This winter left it a true disaster zone. I worked steadily raking small areas and filled two trash can size black trash bags full of debris blown down from my arborvitaes and neighboring trees over the winter, in addition to about half a ton of nut shells. The nut shells are my fault because I feed all the neighborhood squirrels. They are so entertaining, and very smart! I also made a small dent in starting clean-up of the flower beds, where the "mild" (ahem) weather and thawed earth has encourages perennials to start popping through, whether I'm ready for them or not!
All in all, a somewhat decent start to making a larger dent in clean-up operations. I worked outdoors about 4 hours off and on. I didn't want to overdo it, and truth be told, I'm pooped! It's humbling to not be able to work as long or as hard as I used to. I can get it done, but I have to take lots of rest breaks so it takes quite a bit longer now. Good thing I'm retired