Sunday, December 05, 2010
Had to share this, while snow is still on a lot of our minds:
Recorded after the great freeze last year. :-)
And there's this too! LOLOL
Sunday, December 05, 2010
Yes, the weather warmed up as fast as it chilled, and all our snow has gone melty-melty. There is still ice in places, but that is melting fast during the day, though causing havoc at night and in the mornings as we plummet below zero and then some each night turning wet roads and pavements into ice rinks. For the next few days we will be bouncing around across the great Zero Degree Divide, spending more time under it than on top of it from what they are saying. :-)
You should see the amount of mud where the melt has soggied the ground! :-)
We made it to Highwoods this morning for the first time since Thursday. There was a lot of compacted snow and ice on the pavements and footpaths, but it was reasonably easy to dodge the worst of it, and the fields have gone from those pictures I took on Thursday back to largely green with patches of snow where the drifts had made it deeper. Looking at it today, it was hard to believe the winter wonderland we had walked through only three days earlier had ever been there. Amazing!
I would have taken pics, but we were joined on our walk by a lovely lady called Della, and her young black Lab called Bailey. We were kept occupied watching out for him and keeping our feet. LOLOL We were out for about an hour and a half, and it was lovely to have the company. :-)
Della was very impressed that Sophie is coming along so well with dealing with her nervousness around people. The only time her tail went between her legs was when there was four of us stood chatting, and about half a dozen dogs milling about, and it got a bit too much for her. Once we moved on she was happy again though. She enjoyed spending time with Bailey, and I think that once I get back from the wedding I might start letting her off the lead up there sometimes. I'm always worried that something will scare her and she'll bolt, but so far so good once we are actually in the park. :-)
Well, this last week or two I have failed to weigh myself, or keep track of much of my food, and my exercise has been intermittent, to say the least. What I do know is that I haven't excessively eaten, and have been pretty much on track, outside of munching on a little candy corn, courtesy of CARLA-216. *waves and blows thankyou kiss* It tastes rather like fudge, and the texture is similar too. Funny really, because I always imagined candy corn to be hard, like boiled sweets. Fortunately, although I like fudge, I can only ever eat a tiny bit at a time, so I shall be good and only eat a few pieces of the candy corn at a time. :-)
The really good news is that although I haven't lost, I am still at 13 stone 1 1/2 lbs! Wow! This is great! I plan not to worry about sparking until I get back from the wedding, but if I carry on this way, and don't get silly at the wedding weekend, I should be fine. :-)
My journey has never been about weight loss so much as making my life more active and healthier, and if weight loss comes along for the ride, then that is icing on the 'healthy' cake. *grin* I am already feeling fitter, and I'm more aware of what I am eating than I used to be. This is all to the good, but I must admit that I'm looking forward to getting back to tracking properly. Maybe Carol Vorderman will stop telling me off on my Active Health game then. LOLOL
My batwings are back in full flap though. I haven't done a scrap of weight training for over a fortnight, and it is obvious when you look at my arms. Oh dear! Well, at least I know how that all works now, so again, after the wedding I'll get back on top of that too. :-) I hate how I fold when I'm under stress, but sometimes there is just too much to deal with, and I just need to find a way to deal with this kind of thing for the future. Coping strategies that revolve around exercise is something I need to develop. :-)
I have two mantras on the go currently:
The first, for the safe journeying of all involved with the wedding, and for the smooth running of the wedding itself, I am encouraging everyone to say the following:
"It will all work out! *clap hands once*
It WILL all work out! *clap hands once*
It will ALL work out! *clap hands once*
Believe it!" *clap hands three times*
Anyone who'd like to add good vibes for Bryony's Wedding are welcome to repeat this a few times between now and Saturday. We can use all the positive energy we can get, especially for the journeys there and back on Thursday and Sunday. :-) Sing it, drum it, shout it, however you feel the urge. :-)
My other mantra, and this doesn't need assistance, is:
"After the wedding...." *grin*
Tara is sick of hearing me say, "After the wedding...." Poor love! So many things are on hold until "After the wedding...." it's not funny! *grin*
But what can you do? I have finite cash, and everything else just has to wait. With one exception. Sophie's extending lead has finally given up the ghost, so I have to go buy a new one tomorrow. Them's not cheap!
Well, I'm off to start writing lists. Packing lists, Waitrose shopping lists, town shopping lists, Sophie's list of needs, cleaning lists, you name it, and it goes on a list. :-) I'm drowning in lists of lists! I'm listing under the weight of all these lists. LOLOL
I hope everyone enjoys the changes I've made to my Sparkpage incidentally. I didn't want to let go of Autumn, but how can I deny it has gone when I've been wading through snow? LOL So, I've gone all Thomas Kinkade with the background, because I love his work. 'Painter of Light' is a very apt description of him, and the winter moonlight scene I chose is one of my favourites of his. :-)
Have a great rest of the weekend!
Friday, December 03, 2010
We had around eight inches to a foot of fresh snow over 18 hours through Wed night and Thursday. In the morning, just as I was tucking into my porage, having decided to forget about a walk out for the fourth day in a row, the phone rang.
It was Anne. She was back from the hospital (took her an hour and a half to drive there - 2 miles), and had picked Pat up and wondered if it was a good time to come round and introduce her to Sophie. I asked them to give me a few mins to eat my porage, and I scooted around tidying and putting the kettle on between mouthfuls. :-) I hadn't expected to see Pat until Friday. LOL
Anyway, a few minutes later they picked their way round to the house and in they came. Sophie came shooting out to say Hi to Anne, and didn't notice Pat at first. Pat's hand was on Sophie's head before she knew what was happening, and then she backed away and started barking.
After a few minutes of trying to get Sophie to quieten down, we walked into the kitchen, sat at the table and I dished out cuppas. Sophie seems to settle quicker if people are sat in the kitchen, and within a few minutes she was paws up on Pat's chair to get a closer look at her, and by the time we finished our drinks, she was laid under the table, head at Pat's feet.
Pat was eager to take Sophie for a walk, but given her penchant for spooking at the strangest things, I didn't feel comfortable letting Pat go alone, and Tara seemed keen to test out the wellies and socks I'd dug out for her, so off we all set, leaving Anne at her home, unfortunately, due to her pains being a pain.
It turns out my walking boots are great in the snow! I bless the day I ordered them. :-) Normally you wouldn't get me to venture beyond the local shop in this weather, but on Wednesday I went grocery shopping to Tesco with Anne in her van in spite of the icy conditions, and walked the slippery paths round there and Waitrose with reasonable confidence on the whole. :-) Thursday's offering was fresh snow, and still falling as well, so a safer prospect I always find, rather than once it has been trodden down.
Pat took charge of Sophie right from the start, and headed off up the road, Tara and I chatting to her about where we normally go in Highwoods.
We reached the tunnel...
This is Pat with Sophie...
And what a winter wonderland awaited on the other side...
We were going to just do the Boat Field Circuit, but when we got close to the lake Tara said she wondered what it looked like in the snow, and Pat and I looked at each other and we all decided to go see.
In the first field, it was beautiful...
It made a change to have Pat wandering off with Sophie in the distance instead of Tara...
And Sophie was most curious to see people using sledges...
We could hear a lot of chatter and laughter, and as we came round the trees we could see the big hill was swarming with kids and adults sledging down the slope...
I couldn't do the view justice with my camera. Pat remarked that it looked like one of Lowry's paintings, and I had to agree! :-)
It was amazing to see so many people there at once. The splashes of colour from the sledges and peoples' coats looked amazing against the soft white of the snow, and the laughter and screams of excitement were in stark contrast to the usual peace and quiet I'd come to expect there. :-)
But the real view was as we reached the tip of the hill and looked down on the lake...
It was completely frozen over, except where holes had been made, presumably to help the fish out. We walked around the lake, and I took lots of photos of both it, and the trees...
A few interesting 'ornaments' were sitting on the ice. A shopping trolley, a traffic cone, and in this pic a football and a washing basket, which is what that wee blue blob is...
Then we went into the woods, and got a little bit lost for about half an hour when we were so busy looking at the scenery and snapping pics that we forgot to keep an eye on the direction posts. LOL
The Holly looks stunning covered in snow...
Then there was this little area that I thought looked quite pretty...
And finally, I took this snap of a tree stump that I felt had a hint of 'bear' about it. :-)
I had to stop there because my phone battery was very low. Normally I would have charged it up before going out, but Pat had taken us by surprise. *grin*
About half an hour later we were home, and ready for a warm drink.
We really enjoyed our walk, and I was stunned to discover that we had been out for more than two hours. We walked about four and a half miles!!!
It was fantastic! If only the snow would stay that beautiful and easy to walk on I'd be happy to have it here all winter! :-)
I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend planned.
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
Just to add to my fun, we have snow!
I don't have photos because I have spent the day in a bit of a panic, but I have some from last year that give you an idea...
Yesterday the garden looked rather like this:
Today, it looks more like this:
And it is still snowing on and off, so I dread to think how it will look in the morning. *gulp*
I'm afraid my love of snow took a direct hit last year when we had the worst winter for over 40 years, and our pavements were blocks of ice for over a week at a time, making even getting out of the garden hazardous. We just aren't geared up for snow in the southeast of England.
I learned one lesson though. Last year I ended up taking a shovel to the ice, banging the blade on the ice repeatedly to try and break it to make a safe path, and hurt my hands really badly in the process. So this time I took the hoe out and scraped a pathway this morning, and I will do that every morning until this spell of weather is over, to minimise problems with access and avoid hand damage this time. :-)
We are all praying that the weather doesn't cause problems come the wedding. The cold is set to stay for a while yet, and now Bryony is worried that it could cause problems for guests who have some distance to travel to reach the venue. The current mantra we are all adopting is: "It will all work out! It WILL all work out! It will ALL work out!" *grin*
Sophie has had a last minute reprieve from the dog kennel. :-) Thanks to the kindness of neighbour Anne's fella's Mum, Sophie can stay in her own home while we are away. Anne and Pat are going to share looking after Sophie between them. Pat only lives a ten minute walk away, and walks and cycles everywhere. She is a lovely lady, and although she hasn't met Sophie yet, she is going to come round either Thur or Fri to meet her, and again in the early part of next week to give Sophie a chance to get used to her.
It hasn't been easy to weigh up what's best for Sophie, but I can't help thinking that it will be less stressful for her to stay in her own home, even with us missing, and having to be here alone at night, and having Anne and Pat popping in and out. It means no more trips in the car, and no concrete kennel and wire run for five days. As it is, we had to postpone last Thursday's test run because Ade's car battery died, and today didn't happen because of the snow. I can't help thinking that the Universe was trying to tell me something. :-)
So, this way Sophie gets her own space, unlimited use of the sofa, warmth, food, the TV for company, and lots of fuss, especially from Pat, who sounds very very eager to help. :-) Yes, all in all I think this is for the best. :-)
Hope everyone is having a good day. :-)
Maybe Sophie will arrange a little party of her own while we're away. :-)
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