winter hold-outs

Here are 3 photos of Theo holding out big chunks of icy snow out on our driveway.

2 months ago.

A week ago.

2 days ago.

Seriously, I’m about done with this series. Soon, I hope to have photos of my children holding spring flowers. Or beach toys. Maybe even popsicles.

On the bright (?) side, I got buzzed by a gnat while waiting for the school bus this afternoon. So, spring is in the air…

marginal progress

The temperatures got quite warm yesterday afternoon, thankfully, and much of the snow on our driveway melted. When I checked for the crocuses again today, they were bravely poking up through the snow.

Crocuses at 8:30 a.m. 3 spikes have poked out of the snow. (Actually, there are more spikes off camera.)

As for me, I confess that today I’m feeling snowed under (though it’s not the snow that’s doing it). I ran up against a wall with an experiment I’m designing (which is not actually about running up against walls), and then decided to switch gears and work on a different work project (which is not about gears, or switching them). Only to find that I’d managed not to save the file I’d worked on the last time I worked on the project. And another file for a different project to boot. (There were no boots.) I spent a fair amount of time hunting for the files, before determining that I had to retrace my steps. (Though there was no actual stepping). I spent a fair amount of time swearing at myself. (You can bet that there was actual swearing.)

It did not feel like a productive day.

On the bright side, the crocuses are making some progress.

Crocuses at 5:30 p.m., from a slightly different angle. You can see a 4th purple spike just emerging in the middle of the 3.

3 photos of melting snow

These salt crystals on the road look like rough gemstones.

We had a night of mixed snow and rain. In the bright sun of the next morning, slushy snow fell from the trees with lots of little plops, some of which made patterns like barnacles.

The stones of our front walk must have been warmer than the surrounding ground. I like the way the spaces between the stones filled with snow.

barely balanced

I liked the way that these tall piles of snow managed to stay upright, nestled in the branches of this tree in our front yard. In the afternoon light, it even had a bit of a glow.

This photo was from Sunday. Now, remarkably, much of the snow is gone. We had a warm stretch, and lots of rain, melting and compacting the 2 feet of snow from Saturday down to maybe 4 inches. I thought that much snow would stick around for weeks! 2 years ago, we had a winter where the snow just kept coming, without the melting in between. There were a number of roof cave-ins around the area from the weight of all that snow. I like the quick melting snow much better!

Speaking of balance, I’m having a bit of trouble getting all the things done I need to do. It’s been another crazy stretch, with all kinds of commitments left and right. Valentine’s Day stuff for the kids. Work stuff. Home stuff. I have an early meeting in Boston tomorrow, and then I will collect my mother at the airport. The house is a mess, and I still haven’t found the guest bed. And I really, really want to share a story about a Big Thing I did last week. But I need to go to bed!

I also feel compelled to say that now that I’ve publicly announced my intentions to post every day this month, it suddenly feels like more of a burden to post every day this month. I know that’s sort of silly, especially given that I don’t actually *have* to post every day this month. And I certainly don’t need to do anything spectacular when I post every day this month. But now I have this strange compulsion to repeat the phrase “post every day this month.”

Did I mention that I need to get to bed?

digging in

Our array of snow shovels.

Some of you may have noticed that I have been posting rather frequently of late. I decided, you see, that I would post every day this month. I have so many photos and stories to share, I decided to just dig in. I don’t really have a plan, beyond that. I’m just picking from among the photos in my digital hoard, or posting as things come up. I hope to share some more of my travel stories, and other posts I’ve started to draft. Maybe, when I’ve laid it all out, some sort of pattern will emerge. Or maybe it will be just a big pile. But it will be my pile.

There are some bushes hiding under these piles.

Our front path.

And now I should try to dig back into my work, which has been entirely neglected for the past few days. Not only have I spent a lot of time shovelling snow, but I have also not had any time without at least one young child since Thursday.

digging out

As you may have heard, the US East Coast was hit by a blizzard over the past couple of days. We weathered the storm without any incident (happily, we didn’t lose power), and by mid-morning today the skies had cleared and the sun came out. All told, it looks like we got somewhere between 18 inches and 2 feet of snow. (It was crazy-windy last night, so there was much drifting.)

John had shovelled several times during the night, so the driveway only had about 8 inches when the snow stopped. He had, however, left the car untouched. Come 3 in the afternoon, pretty much all of the other necessary shovelling was done. It was time to deal with this:

Dude, where’s my car?

Theo, who often enjoys brushing the snow off the car with our long-handled snow brush, decided that he would take on the job.

2:54:28 p.m. Trying the side of the car first, but having trouble reaching the car.

2:54:46 p.m. Around to the back, and looking determined.

2:55:09 p.m.

2:55:16 p.m.

2:55:59 p.m. “You can get the rest, Mommy.”

So it was up to me.

4:09 Close enough? I think this is kind of a good look for the car. And we didn’t have to go anywhere.

What do you see? (Please participate in the snow Rorschach test.)

shadows with highlights, highlights with shadows

On Friday we awoke to a cold but bright and sunny morning and a very light dusting of snow. After going about the usual morning routine and getting the kids off to school, I came home and got ready to do some work. I’m not sure why it caught my eye, but when I looked out my back door, I saw something I hadn’t seen before: The sun had melted the very thin layer of snow, all except for any that was in shadow. On our deck, the railings cast their long morning shadows onto the deck floor, and each shadow had its own outline of snow. The angle of the sun had clearly changed since most of the melting, as the snow didn’t line up perfectly with the shadows. Instead, the thinner dark stripes had their white highlights, and the thicker white stripes were set off by a dark shadow outline.


Yes, our deck could use a good sweeping, and perhaps a scrubbing. But the leaves and debris add a bit of texture, right?

late fall snowfall

We had a bit of a snowfall Tuesday night, and while there wasn’t much in the way of accumulation, the wet snow stuck to every leaf and twig such that almost everything was outlined in white. Occasional water drops had also frozen, adding some sparkle to the scene. I took a few photos around the yard before the school bus came, and then a few more later in the morning during a short walk with a neighbor.

Here are a handful of my favorites from the morning.

A tree in our front yard that hasn’t quite given up all its leaves.

Along our house’s front path.

A neighbor’s rail fence.

This stone wall is at the dairy farm that is a half mile from my house.

Snow and ice on the shrubbery.

White snow, red berries.

Ice drops on pine needles.

(Those last two were ones I posted on Instagram, with filters. I posted a version of the stone wall there, too, but without filters.)

Once again, my trusty iPhone did some nice work. I’m sure my camera would have done a good job, but I am less likely to throw it in my coat pocket. Especially given that it doesn’t fit in my coat pocket. Maybe I just need bigger coat pockets.

as white as snow (friday foto finder)

When snow falls in big cities like Boston, everything is magically transformed into a world of white. For a moment.

Before long, exhaust from the traffic and the spray of sand and dirt turn it all brown and gray. The mounds of snow from the plows sometimes look more like mounds of sand and dirt. The sidewalks become soupy with gray slush. Winter wonderland it is not.

Out here where I live, though, we don’t have so much traffic. The snow, for the most part, stays white until it melts away.

This was some snow by the side of our driveway, the remnants of the pile from shoveling after some partial melting and refreezing. I liked the way the elements had sculpted these interesting forms, and how the low angle of the winter sun illuminated them.

This week’s friday foto finder prompt is “white.” Given that the other regular participants represent warmer climes, I thought it was my duty as a New England resident to offer up this more wintery interpretation.