Friday, February 27, 2015


Miller's Cove,  Queens Creek

No amount of denial can change the fact that Mathews County received significant snowfall on top of snow on top of more snow Wednesday evening and into Thursday.

These shots of my front yard were taken from my porch Thursday morning.

Believe it or not, my driveway is in this picture.  Can't see it?  Neither can I.  You can't see my new-to-me car either, which I've nicknamed the  Skid Mobile.  I parked it at the very end of my driveway, in the hopes I may get out one day.  I'm aiming for 2016.  I'd like to be able to drive to see my daughter graduate high school.  We'll see. 

Although the newscasters--who sit comfortably an hour or two away--claimed that the snow would stop on Thursday morning and the sun might even peek out, that didn't happen.

Actually, that was fine with me.  My work was closed, school was closed, and if I'm going to be trapped inside, I'd prefer it be dark and gloomy outside.  If the sun were shining, I'd feel compelled to be doing something more productive than cooking clam chowder and seafood pasta and chocolate cakes and things like that.

I'm not sure what it is about a storm that makes me want to cook, but it's a compulsion.  Daughter and I eat well around here during a storm.

Daughter is not done with basketball yet, believe it or not.  School hasn't been in session  since September  regularly these past couple of weeks making the conference tournament--which decides who goes to regionals--very difficult. Not only have the games been cancelled but the school closings mean the team hasn't been able to practice.  The first tournament game against West Point was downright ugly. Really ugly. Daughter was so angry at herself for missing so many shots during a portion of the game that she was actually crying on the bench.  I've seen her cry once after a game, but never during one.  She was extremely upset with herself. But she snapped out of it quickly.

And somehow we won the game.

Now we're waiting on the weather to break so the next game can be played.

Or so the team can at least practice.

Or so we can locate our driveway get out of our driveway.

We're basically waiting.

On spring.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015


Just as I am in denial that this favorite tree of mine no longer stands at Aaron's Beach, I am also in denial that it is snowing yet again as I type this.  Driving the 50+ miles home from work last evening it started up again, and by the time I got home the roads were already covered.

So, I'm pretending that it is a warm, sunny day at the beach, like the day I took these photos back in the spring of 2013.  I'm pretending it isn't snowing.  I'm pretending I feel better and that my ear isn't aching and my sinuses aren't killing me.  Most importantly, I'm pretending the weather forecasters aren't calling for an additional four to six inches of snow tonight and into tomorrow.

Nope. It's not happening.

None of it.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Snow. Still.

This marks Day One Thousand and Eleventy Two of not feeling well and it's too cold and my new car wasn't meant for snow and why is it only 56 degrees inside my house when the thermostat is set to 68 and the heat pump hasn't turned off for two weeks and how much will my electric bill be and how will I ever feel good enough to run again and how much work is piled up when I finally go back today and how many days until I can retire and will I make it that long?  All that and then some.

Sunday the temperatures finally broke and things started to thaw out but not enough to really make a difference.  At least not to me.  I still have too much snow on my deck and too much snow in my driveway and not enough energy to do anything about any of it.

Regardless, I will drag myself into work today and pretend to be enthusiastic and full of pep even if all I want to do is pull the covers over my head and sleep until April.

I hope all is well in your world.

Is it April yet?

Friday, February 20, 2015

More Snow

Much like the days that comprised this week, the photos above appear to be identical yet they are subtly distinct.

Monday was a holiday. Tuesday work was closed. Wednesday was my normal day off. Wednesday night we received just a tad more snow, enough to make leaving for work Thursday morning impossible since my new car wasn't made for icy conditions.  Another contributing factor was my scratchy, sore throat, deep chest cough and sheer exhaustion--which will likely keep me home again today.

Daughter hasn't had school all week either.

I can't remember when I was home for so many days in a row without obligations other than to nap and rest.  And shovel snow in between sweating and coughing spells.

It's brutally cold here but a reprieve is on the way.  Or so they say.

Have a great weekend.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015


Tuesday morning Mathews County awoke to gray skies, a layer of snow on the ground, lingering snow flurries, no school for Daughter and no work for me.  (This was one of the rarest of rare occasions my place of employment shut down for the day.  I think they need to try it more often, they might like it. I know I would.)

By the afternoon, clouds gave way to sunshine, but the temperatures were still brutally cold.

So much has happened since I last posted I hardly know where to start.

Saturday morning, Baby Sis and I traveled to New Kent Winery and stood in the freezing cold along with about 1,600 others for what felt like hours waiting on the start of a race. If that wasn't a test of endurance I don't know what is.  Naturally neither of us had trained for it, but even so we placed in the middle of the pack for the 10K.  (There was also a 5K.)  Afterwards we sampled some of the wine, which helped make the pain and agony of gasping for breath in frigid weather somewhat worthwhile.

Later she talked me into going back with her to Richmond. Her friend Dino made us a delicious Valentines supper of perfectly cooked baked salmon, and the three of us headed out to see a band at the Broadberry Theater.  I confess that the very last thing I wanted to do after running a 10K early on a Saturday morning an hour from home in brutal temperatures was stay up late and see a band, but in hindsight I'm glad I did.  We had a really good time.

Sunday night I joined my friend Alda, her husband, and a new friend with one of the most unusual names I've ever heard--Myrtchas--for dinner in Deltaville, also a good time and not something I'd ordinarily do on a Sunday night.

Monday Daughter and I waited eagerly for details about the impending snow storm. I started cooking, because that's what I tend to do when it snows.  Vegetarian chili, lasagna and cornbread for starters.  An odd combination but somehow it worked.

Tuesday morning we awoke to the winter wonderland above. Later in the day I started sweating--very unusual in a house I keep at a steady 67 degrees even in this frigid weather--and realized I'm getting sick.  Thankfully, because work was cancelled, I could spend the day in bed without feeling guilty. I still found time to make more food, including a chocolate peanut butter pudding cake in the crock pot.  Yes, you read that correctly.  Not sure where the punctuation goes, but all of those words belong.

That same day, in between bouts of sweating, I still had to walk the dog six times in the snow.  Six times.  Six. In calf-deep snow. My aging dog has kidney disease and when he's not drinking water he's expelling it.  It's great fun in 20-degree weather when you're simultaneously sweating and coughing.  Good times.

That's OK.  Except for the dog and running 6.2 miles on a hilly course in New Kent County in frigid temperatures my minor aches and pains, the past several days have been wonderful.

Practically perfect.

Hope all is well where you are.


Friday, February 13, 2015

This and That

These are recycled from February 2013 but are as good as new to me since I haven't seen them in a while. This dock and boat, in their advanced state of deterioration, really appeal to me.

But then again I don't get out much.

And I'm very easily entertained.

Growing up in Mathews in the days before technology, the back yard was the cable TV, the internet, the cell phone, the Netflix, everything. You made your own fun.  Luckily I've not forgotten those days and am still very much amused by almost nothing at all.

It's either a life skill or some form of insanity, I'm not sure which.

Not to sound like a broken record, but things are busier than ever at work and at home--especially work. This weekend is a long one, though, thanks to the federal holiday on Monday.

Saturday morning bright and early, Baby Sis and I will jog a 10K over in New Kent at a winery, a first for us.  We'll trot up and down hills and meander through neighborhoods and with any luck be rewarded with wine and chocolate at the finish.  I dread the running in this cold, cold weather but look forward to the rest.

Baby Sis is trying to talk me into seeing a band in Richmond on Saturday night, after the 10K.

Something tells me after the week I've had and the early morning jog in frigid temperatures, I'll be ready for nothing more than a very long nap Saturday evening. And staring out my window onto Queens Creek from the comfort, warmth and quiet of my warm living room.

But we'll see.

I hope your weekend is fantastic.

Monday, February 9, 2015


High school basketball and an extremely busy work schedule have completely consumed my days and nights these past several months.  Nearing the end of the regular season, the Mathews Lady Blue Devils are second place in the conference, with only two losses to a team I'd like to personally pummel Middlesex.

Although the team has played well all season, lately we're suffering slightly because several key players are out with injuries and illness.  Above, the three under the basket not suited up are all injured.  Two are guards who help Daughter push the ball up the court.

Last Friday was the last home game and also Senior Night.  

We'll definitely miss these young ladies next year.

There are two more games this week before we move to the conference tournament.  At least one of our injured players should be back in action by then, thankfully.

Daughter has managed to juggle her schoolwork with this rigorous basketball schedule.  She played three games last week, was worn out after each one, and showed me a report card that had A's and only one B.  She said she's (for now) ranked first in her class of 106 students.  She's also been working as a ref for the county's youth basketball league on Saturdays and catching up on sleep when she can.

How in the world she manages to do it all and do it all so well with a (mostly) positive attitude is beyond me.

I'm extremely proud of her.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Bright Spot

Pulling into the driveway after Yet Another Long Day at work, I caught a glimpse of the moon making its appearance for the evening over Queens Creek. After grabbing all the grocery bags from the car, trudging up the steps and throwing everything on the kitchen counter, I dashed into the back yard with my camera for just a minute; and for just a minute I was able to ignore the chaos reality occurring in the house behind me.

Daughter, busy doing homework after basketball practice, was starving; the dog needed this; the cat needed that. The dirty dishes stacked high in the kitchen sink were talking about me--and snickering-- behind my back. Even the groceries were complaining, loudly, that I was too slow and wasn't putting them away fast enough.

Or so it seemed.

In the midst of the perceived chaos at home after a day of actual chaos at work*, I was grateful for the minute I had with the moon in the back yard with my camera.

Very grateful.

*Like this moon over Queens Creek after work, there was one very bright spot in my day at work.  A friend surprised me by delivering a home-cooked lunch of mashed potatoes and roast beef to my office. Given that all I'd brought to eat was a handful of grapes, which I'd choked down by 10 a.m., and also given that I love mashed potatoes so much I was called Potato Woman in college, this surprise made all the day's stresses seem immaterial.  

Because, really, in the presence of homemade mashed potatoes made from homegrown potatoes, everything else--including chaos--must be secondary. 

I'm pretty sure that's one of the Laws of Nature. If not, I hereby nominate it to be one.

Monday, February 2, 2015


It was low tide at Williams Wharf when I arrived there for a short run Sunday morning.  It's rare that I'm there at low tide, and I took advantage of the opportunity to peruse the shoreline for hidden treasures. Although I didn't find anything terribly unusual, I did enjoy seeing all the green sea grass and oyster shells that are usually covered up by the East River.

The tire was a little out of place, but it was doing its best to blend in.

I'm doing my best to blend in at work and everywhere else even though I am tired.  I'm pretty sure I could sleep for a week, maybe a month, if allowed.  The weekend wasn't enough to get caught up on sleep, even though I took full advantage of the opportunity to take naps both days.

Tired or not, it's back to the business of commuting and work and not one, not two, but three basketball games this week after work.

I hope your week is a good one.