W is for Windblown #AtoZChallenge

Fir tree broken trunkYou could no longer bend with the wind. Yesterday it broke you down, revealing that you weren’t as strong as we thought. You had a weakness that you kept hidden. Was it worms that did this? Or maybe insects or fungi that caused this weariness?

We wept for a moment near you, wished you well, and walked on, past the wasted part of the wood.

Fir tree broken trunk rotten inside

O is for Offseason #AtoZChallenge

Snow and seagulls on beachFinally this year I was able to visit the beach during winter. I had always wanted to go there during its offseason, just to know what it was like to walk next to the ocean in opposite weather of what I’m used to.

Treads on beach covered in

It was as beautiful, windy, and cold as I had guessed it would be.

Snow on beach with person in
A bundled figure walks while several surfers wait for the next wave

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.

Things That Are Rough: Cee’s Fun Photo Challenge

Rough

Here’s my entry for Cee’s Fun Photo Challenge: Things That Are Rough. Some textured bark on a pine tree.

Rough pile of old icy snow

What was once an inviting, fluffy mountain of snow is now a dirty pile of chopped ice. It melts a little each day but freezes again at night. Try to play on this and you’ll slip, the rough chunks of ice scratching your hand as you brace your fall.

Cactus and yellow flowers in New Jersey

I featured this photo of the catci in a recent post about a trip to a rose garden last summer. Thanks to my friend Maria F., I now know their name: Opuntia humifusa. Thanks, Maria!

Bee and pollen on thistle

Here’s a very happy bee on a pointy thistle.

Note scratched into the paint on an old door

This is rough on an emotional level. When I read the note that was scratched into the painted-over glass windows on a padlocked door to an abandoned house, I couldn’t help but wonder about the circumstances. More photos and speculation in this post from several months ago.

Things That Are Cold: Cee’s Fun Photo Challenge

icicles, rust
This week’s topic for Cee’s Fun Photo Challenge is things that are cold.

Snow on a fence and trees

I see a pattern with my images: they are mostly based on the weather. Snow and ice and cold is all I can think about. The temperatures will drop this weekend to their lowest of the winter so far.

snow on trees

I wonder how I would have done this challenge in the summer time? Maybe images of ice-cold drinks sitting out in the sun?

slide, playground, snow

Speaking of summer, it will be nice to get out to the parks and playgrounds again.

snow and ice on the lake with dried grass

Or go swimming in the lake.

dock, snow, ice, night, grass

Or go check out the marina near the beach.

Dried hydrangea in snow afternoon sunlight

Looking at flowers again in warm weather.

snow pile, stop sign

Or even just looking at stop signs without being reminded of snow.

ice frozen to a wall, icicles

But for now, my world is full of things that are cold. And that includes me!