G is for Goose #AtoZChallenge

Canada goose in a pond at sunset in winter
“How is it 60° in late December?”

“I don’t know,” I replied.

“This pond should be filled with people ice skating, not geese swimming.”

“I know,” I said.

“I mean, it’s nice to be out, but it’s just weird. But I guess we should enjoy it, huh?”

I shrugged.

 

F is for Flowers Freezing #AtoZChallenge

Cherry Blossoms covered in snow
Snowy cherry blossoms

We had a warm streak in early March that lasted long enough to trick the early flowering trees into blossoming. Too soon, little flowers, too soon. The snow stuck around for a day or two, followed soon by another storm with much colder temperatures and more snow.

Finally, a month after this photo was taken, the time was right for the trees to begin opening.

It seems that weather patterns have been disrupted lately. Winters are not predictable as they once were, turning into a mixture of a heat wave one week and an arctic blast the next.

Plum tree blossoms with snow on branches
Snowy plum tree blossoms

These trees that I photographed are decorative—planted in my neighborhood to look pretty and not to provide food. But these same erratic weather patterns are affecting and will continue to affect our fruit trees, other crops, and food supply. For example, fruit and nut trees need a certain amount of cold weather, or “chill hours,” in winter in order to produce fruit during the growing season. Peach farmers in Georgia are expecting an even worse year than last year’s crop yield, in part due to record low amounts of chilling hours.

Let’s hope we can stop climate change before we run out of food.

 

Partly Cloudy?

Cloudy sky with tiny patch of blueDear weather app, I think we can upgrade that to Cloudy. Maybe even Mostly Cloudy.

Sadly, we haven’t even seen that much blue sky all week (this photo is old). It’s been cold and rainy here, with not a trace of blue in sight.

I don’t want to complain though, because I’m enjoying the cooler weather before it gets hot. Soon, I won’t want to bake or roast anything because of the heat, so I’m enjoying it now.

I hope everyone has a nice weekend. Mine will be busy. Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there!

Just One More

Snow on the bushes and

We got a touch of snow today. Just an inch or two, but it was enough to make me happy. I’m feeling in-between, like the weather is right now. I’m ready for spring to come, but I’m also happy to get one more snow. Just to have a chance to appreciate it and say goodbye.

Once more into the snow boots, dear friends. One more pass on the car with the scraper. A few hundred more tiny flakes on my face, and then I’ll be ready to put it away for the season.

A little bit of snow on the ground under the pine trees

We might even get a dusting on Sunday. Then next week it’s temps in the 60s and 70s, so this feels like the end of the snow.

Snow on branches on the bushes

But, you never know, there’s always a chance of getting one more monster snow storm in March/April that will completely blanket the town in ice crystals. The in-between times can be kind of fun.

Photo Challenge: Seasons

icicles, bush, snow, sunshine
This week, the Daily Post asked to see our interpretation of the weather where we live. We could also represent the season, or phase, of life that we feel right now. My photo represents both because it lets me show that while the trees in my world are still firmly in winter’s grip, the sun is shining and it’s almost time for winter to melt away for good.

I’m feeling ready for spring, so maybe I’m showing my idealized version of my current weather. Truth is, we’re not quite that close to spring. There are still plenty of chilly, rainy grey days ahead. This year has been warmer than usual, so most of our snow has come to us in the form of very cold rain. That doesn’t have quite the charm as a pretty dusting of powder. This photo is actually from last year. I haven’t seen many icicles this winter. It sure has been a weird one.

We got our huge blizzard just under a month ago, which I took a walk through. The next day was bright and sunny, as well as a week later when I went outside to check the progress on the melting snow. Earlier this month there was a very dramatic and pretty snowstorm that provided some nice winter scenes. But otherwise, it’s been pretty drab and chilly.

Short and Sweet Snowstorm

Snow on a fence and trees

Yesterday we had a snowstorm that was short and sweet.

2016-02-06 17.06.06

Rain turned to snow around 3am Friday morning and continued steadily until about 10am.

Snow

The wet, heavy snow decorated the trees and turned the world into a winter wonderland.

Snow

Trees and branches were weighed down.

Snow on tree

And thick tangles of branches grew even thicker and more softly woven.

Snowy slushy road and

Slush made driving slightly slippery, but luckily it was too warm for ice to form on the roads. That would have been more difficult to drive through.

Snow on sweet

By 11:30am, the sun shone brightly and caused the snow to plop off of tree branches like blobs of oatmeal falling from the sky.

Sky

After a few hours it was hard to tell that it had snowed that morning at all. By the evening, it had even melted off of the roofs, trees, cars and anything that was in the warm sun. Temperatures dropped overnight, and any remaining snow or slush froze. Some unfortunate owners spent time scraping ice off of their cars this morning that had been parked in the shade yesterday. All the older snow from the recent blizzard got a fresh white coat.

One Week Post-Blizzard

Dirty snow with shadows
It doesn’t get any prettier, it just melts away.

One week after the biggest snowstorm on record, and there’s still a lot of snow out there (big surprise). The temperatures have been pretty warm, so the good news is it’s been melting off of the roads. Many of the two-lane roads were reduced to one and a quarter lanes earlier last week because of so much snow on the sides of the road. The huge snow piles are also shrinking out of the parking lots.

Pile of snow with pine tree and afternoon sun

Today was 55° and sunny, and the remaining snow mountains at home were still fun to climb up, slide down, and dig through.

Bright and Snowy

A snow shovel in the walkway next to snow

The snow removal crew cut a path this morning. The news said our area got 27″ of snow. That felt about right!

A path cut through the snow

Interesting how the wall of snow is taller on the right. You could also tell when walking–it was deeper in some spots. This is because of the high winds creating snow drifts. It depends on which way the wind blows, and around which obstacles. You could also tell with the cars in the parking lot. Some had more snow than others (mine was almost completely covered!)

Bright blue sky and snow on the pine trees

The sun was bright and the wind was gone, so shoveling out the cars wasn’t too bad.

Snow pile and sunshine

This huge pile was made by the plow. They push the snow up into the grass and out of the lot.

Sun behind the pine tree next to snow

I have never seen so much snow deposited from one storm. This usually doesn’t happen here. We’ll usually get several storms, sometimes even one per week, with a few inches here and there. Sometimes the snow will pile this high if we have several big storms in a row, but very rarely getting this all in one shot.

To make it even more strange, this is the first major snow of the winter. We’ve gotten flurries twice this month. So to go from 0 to 27 inches in a day is a pretty dramatic change!

For more views of the snow, check out my post about my walk through the blizzard yesterday evening.

A Walk in the Blizzard

Snow outside, view from the window with tree branches

From inside you can see the snow blowing in the wind, but you can’t fully appreciate it until you step out into the blizzard.

With my camera tucked safely in a plastic bag, I took a walk in the afternoon. Or, I should say that I took a trudge through the snow. It came halfway up my shin with some steps, with others it was up past my knees. I wanted to walk to the corner, but the wind was blowing icy snowflakes in my face so I skipped it.

I have taken pictures of this gazebo in spring and in fall.

Gazebo in winter

An icicle hanging off of the gazebo light

Icicle hanging off the gazebo light

As evening came, the light started to look blue.

Snow on pine tree branches

Snow hanging on pine tree

Chilly electric meters

Electric meters covered with snow

This tree looks like a giant bird about to snatch me up. Probably wasn’t the smartest move to stand under it….

Pine tree covered in snow

A row of cars covered in snow

A row of cars

A row of trees in the snow

A

With the wind whipping the snow into drifts, it’s difficult to know how much we got. I think it’s safe to say about a foot.

Here’s the best part about going out in the snow: coming inside and warming up!

Two mugs of hot cocoa with marshmallows