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Saturday, January 6, 2018

Weather above freezing, or back to winter in Ohio


Temps have been below freezing temperatures since before Christmas. Wisconsin was below freezing for the entire visit. Easily forgiven; it’s located in the middle of winter. But, we came home to another week plus of below zero weather. I know, the east coast was hammered, but I don’t live there.

I can remember writing before of polar vortexes and Alberta clippers, and having to explain the latter, as it is a more local term for a cold temperature system out of Alberta, across the plains of Montana, the Midwest, the Great Lakes, where it increases velocity, decreases temperatures and adds snow from the open lakes.

The current weather system is out of reckoning. In retrospect, I am grateful we escaped Milwaukee with two de-icings and one airport closure for plowing. I didn’t expect to return home to snowed in. Or out, as the case may be. Before we went to Wisconsin, I hired a twelve year old kid a couple of doors down to shovel my drive and my neighbor’s, and clean our stairs and decks.

We came home to an impassable drive, and parked in the street. Laura shoveled one path and cleaned the porch enough to get in. The next day she spent two hours cleaning both drives, porches, and cars. Or, ten bucks an hour. I put aside another forty dollars to get through the current spate of drive shoveling, and have ten left. Laura turned an extra fifty dollars since we got home from Christmas. My young hireling has not appeared.

School recommenced last Wednesday, and was cancelled Thursday and Friday because temps were well below zero. It was good small children were not waiting for buses or walking to school, but I had appointments to keep. I just counted—ten  since last Tuesday. I am so grateful my car battery died and was replaced last year.

I went to lunch with a gentleman friend to a new restaurant I thought I knew enough about. But the grade was slightly downhill and the pavement sneaker sole deep in that salt melt slush. I eyeballed at least a hundred and fifty feet to the door and was reaching back in for my cane when my friend parked next to me in his ostentatious red four door Chevy truck. I would never set foot in that truck, but I gratefully accepted an arm.


I came home, and little miss neat informed me she could not put away the Christmas tree because the storage boxes are in the shed and the shed key is frozen. I stopped at the market last night for a frozen “dinner”, having left the cook to overnight at a friend’s. I read the labels.

Everything I might have selected had well over five hundred grams of salt! I came home and steamed the last bag of spinach, which I ate with an obscene amount of butter and stale bread to soak up the spinach juice. On the way down the apple aisle I notice the train is still circuiting the tree. Perhaps their shed locks are frozen, too.



Minus four overnight last night, below freezing yet today and tomorrow. But it seems by Monday we can unlock the shed door and store Christmas for another year.



23 comments:

  1. Oh my goodness! I'm so sorry for all the freezing weather you've been getting. My son in Maryland and daughter in Chicago have been telling me about their cold temperatures. I have to laugh when my mother complains that it's too cold here in Hawaii when the temperatures dip to 68. I wish I could send you some of our warmer temperatures.

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  2. Those temperatures are beyond my comprehension. I don't know how you all live in that much cold. Guess it's like us in the summer, though, when it gets so hot. People don't get that, either.

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  3. It will be balmy by Wednesday, Joanne. Stay warm until then.

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  4. The problem with rising temperatures in winter is that they usually bring either rain or copious snow! Can't have it all, I guess :)

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  5. When you have a frozen lock or almost anything else in the winter I can give you a quick defroster. Keep some rice (uncooked of course) tied in an old sock. Heat it in the microwave for a couple of minutes. Then hold it against the frozen object for a little while. Thaws it right out.

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    1. That's good. I wasn't about to drag the hair dryer out, on an extension cord, through the snow, for an artificial tree.

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    2. Leave the tree up and change decorations to suit different events: bunnies and artificial eggs for Easter, spooky ghosts and mini plastic pumpkins for Halloween, birthday balloons for birthdays and so on.

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    3. My neighbor does that, and I do like it in the corner of her living room. It's not my style, though.

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  6. We are sure looking forward to that little bit of warmth aren't we?

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  7. Stay warm, stay safe.
    It seems your young helper got overwhelmed.
    The amount of salt in packaged meals is scary isn't it? We stopped adding salt to our food quite a while ago, and I really notice it now. And not in a positive way.

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  8. Hari OM
    It's hitting in here this weekend; not the snow, so much, but the ice and bitter cold. Nothing like you have had. Well done Laura. Stay inside and warm Gran! YAM xx

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  9. I heard about your freezes and saw images of frozen areas in our newspaper and can't help wondering how anybody manages, with so many snow days to close schools, snow-ins so people can't get to work, I'm surprised your country doesn't grind to a halt every winter. I hope you all get a bit warmer soon, consistently above freezing at least.
    Here in South Australia yesterday Adelaide sweltered through 108 degrees, while some areas of the state suffered through higher temperatures ranging from our 108 to 116. Mother Nature likes her extremes doesn't she?

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  10. It has been really bitter here lately with wind in addition to the cold. Earlier in the cold spell, it was sunny and calm which made it tolerable. We are due for a few days of milder now, with some snow and perhaps even rain alter this week.

    As for snow clearing, we pay a contractor $200 per years, and it works well for the most part although he isn't always as punctual as we'd like.

    I too have come home to snow-filled driveways in the past, which irked me somewhat as I used to often help the neighbours out freely and unasked when I was a little (but not all that much) younger.

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  11. Record cold today, more snow tomorrow. However, since December 22nd, we are getting a little more light every day.

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    1. I can see it and it makes me happy. I think the winter solstice is more important to me than the summer, when we have so much light. Getting it back come December is more important.

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  12. Why, oh why do manufacturers load up canned and frozen food with so much salt? It would be so nice to buy frozen meals for convenience from time to time; however, the amount of added salt makes it verboten. They are missing out on customers!

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  13. this has been a real winter. snow, a week of freezing lows in the 20˚s and it's only the first week of January. our 'freezes' generally are a quick dip to 30˚ for a night or two. we don't do 20˚s, we don't do snow.

    as for the prepared meals, it's why we don't buy prepared or packaged food...loaded with salt and sugar and GMOs. no organic offerings at your grocery?

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    1. These are the organic offerings! My cookerer had an overnight at a friend's and we were out of "left overs", so I thought I'd have a treat. The spinach was super, the best first choice after the salt licks.

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  14. Hope you defrost soon....we're frozen solid over here as well.

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  15. Next week it's supposed to warm up a bit; all that processed food has lots of sodium, even canned vegetables, terrible how much salt they put in products. I've been making a pot of soup a week and if I have too much I give some to my neighbor and/or freeze some then I can thaw it out when I don't feel like cooking. Last week I had some fresh spinach and I made a wilted spinach salad with hard boiled eggs and bacon; we had that two days in a row; been years since I had fresh spinach, like you I really enjoyed it.

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  16. Thank goodness we don't get Alberta clippers here in Alberta. We just send them your way! But karma gets us via polar vortexes, damn!

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  17. Woe is the definition of winter for me. Only 72 more days.

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  18. OH dear so so cold I can not imagine such cold the world is full of extremes now.
    We are hot hot hot at the moment 42c and above in some places I know that is well over the 100 in the old f scale.
    Merle...........

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