Good morning to you all. We have sun but still have a few snow flakes fluttering down. Later I will go out and clear the doors and paths on the patio and clear what is left on the car. The landscaping people who work for our landlord have already cleared the sidewalks outside the patios. The high winds that came with the snow cleared a lot of the snow so it won't be too strenuous. I did have to go out (thankfully before the temperature dipped below cold into the frigid range) and settled the milk jug cloches more firmly over my blueberries. They have lost most of their leaves but the stems are still nicely green so I have hopes they will survive the winter in good shape.
Nicola's comment on my last post reminded me of the changes in my attitudes toward snow over my lifetime. As a child I loved the snow. I can remember only one time when we had enough snow at one go to cause officials to cancel school so an impromptu vacation was not likely but the cold weather provided the opportunity for different sports and activities. But as an adult I found the snow simply an inconvenience at best and a danger at worst. I remember a couple of real hairy almost serious crashes because I had to go out in nasty weather for whatever job I had at the time. Luckily I emerged from those without even a dented fender. Now I can relax and enjoy the season because I don't have to go out in the weather. I have been retired for three winters now and was unemployed for two before that. We carefully choose when we go out on our errands and make sure we can hunker down for at least a week or more in case we do get snowed in. Even the big blizzard last winter only kept us homebound for five days while we got the patio shoveled, the landscaping crew cleared the sidewalks, and the city plowed the streets. It looks rather pretty outside now with the sun on the snow. I can enjoy it.
This is going to be an unusual day and probably the first of many. With the new year I have a lot of sorting, pitching, and donating to do and at the same time clean up the room that has become a catch all over the last few months ago. We used to spend a lot of time there because that was where our computers were. When Mom's old iMac died and mine was dying, we got a pair of low end MacBooks. Since they are wireless equipped laptops we moved our computer use downstairs to the living room unless we have to use the printer (which isn't wireless.) As a result that room has become a disaster area which really must be cleaned up. So I do a bit and take a break with the computer, do another task and take a break with the computer, etc. Right now I am taking a break from my first task--clearing out the storage bins that held (originally) my out of season clothes. I have three empty small bin, one half filled large bin, and two bags of clothes that will find new homes via the Goodwill store.
The Self Sufficient Gardener has an interesting post but I don't think I will follow his advice totally. I agree with his assessment of ground cherry having tried it last year. I found the taste more like a very dilute strawberry drink--not enough flavor. Although it produced well, I will put in strawberries. But I like trying different and unusual plants and I look for plants that are suitable for our climate. I put in my old faithfuls--tomatoes and peppers--but try some new items each year. Some I won't try again (ground cherry and Tigger melon) because we didn't like the flavor. Some because the plants don't really play nicely with what I already have. But I have found some gems--the Dragon's Egg cucumber and stevia. I have to balance two factors--I only have several large containers and that limited space will not under any conceivable circumstance provide enough to totally take care of our needs. As such my gardens will always be evolving which makes it ever new.
Grist posted this item today which explains why we don't buy our groceries at Wal-Mart and haven't for several years now. But we have found lately that we have to be careful of our local groceries as well. A while ago I recounted how we put back some margarine (a name brand, at that) because, from the oily residue on the packages and the carton they came in, it was clear that the product had not been kept at a proper temperature and had partly melted. We also do not buy the bagged salad greens--that is simply asking for food poisoning.