Entries in winter weather (2)


Time To Shine

I’m sick of winter.  I’m sick of rain.  I’m sick of cold wind gusts.  I’m sick of unseasonably warm temperatures turning into unseasonably cold temperatures overnight.  I’m sick of mud.  I’m sick of the ever-present scent of wet dog. But, you could say that it could be so much worse.  People are suffering from much colder temperatures and unbelievable amounts of snow in other places across the country as well as flooding and many other types of disasters.  My first response would be something like, it’s my blog and I’ll whine if I want to.

            Moving on… I spend most of each day in my office writing, editing, whatever, until Shelby, my gorgeous hound dog, comes in to remind me that it’s six o’clock and time for the most important task of the day.  She is addicted to lasers.  I open up a certain kitchen drawer and her entire body goes tense in anticipation.  I let the tension build for a few moments, then press down on the button, releasing the red dot, allowing it to scurry across the floor.  She spends the next few minutes running through the house, leaping over furniture and virtually climbing the walls in pursuit.  A Milk Bone is her reward and she’s content, knowing that her schedule has been met.

            Monday, Shelby’s life was changed by Daylight Saving Time!  Sunday, the first evening of the changeover was dark and stormy so there was no problem but Monday, after rain and gloom for most of the day, the sun appeared, all bright and shiny. Get this! It’s six o’clock and the house is filled with sunshine.  There is nowhere that the light from the laser can be seen!  How do I explain this to her?  I hide!  I stayed in the office until seven with Shelby pacing the floor, then persistently poking me with her wet nose.  Finally, she got up on her hind legs, put her silky arms around me and started to lick my ear.  I shut all the blinds and we went at it.

            As I’m writing this, it’s six o’clock Tuesday evening and once again, the sun is playing havoc with our schedule!!!  Should I hang tough and close the office door so she can’t come and get me?  Should I give in to her schedule and let it go at that.  Is Shelby bending me to her will or am I trying to teach her to be more flexible?  I guess only time will tell!

\           Seriously, it is nice to have the extra sunlight in the evenings. I have less of a tendency to couch potato in front of the television this time of year and more time to read.  Having cut back on cable extras has helped as now I’m left with a hundred channels trying to sell me stuff along with those who want to help me get rid of wrinkles and sore feet.  I  can’t wait for it to be warm enough to sit out on the deck with Shelby, reading a good book while listening to the frogs croaking in the pond and the cows in the pasture until the sun sets.

I just finished reading Berlin 1936 by Oliver Hilmes.  I’ve read other accounts of the 1936 Olympics but this book stands out to me because it uses the Olympic competition as a backdrop only, spending most of the story on the accounts of the Berliners who were living under the Nazi regime while tourists were given a whitewashed version.  Hitler’s organization was bent on showing the world that Germany was a peaceful, progressive nation and that the rumors of anti-Semitism and territory takeovers were untrue, even as concentration camps were set up only miles from the Olympic stadium filled with Jews, homosexuals, dissenters and those just caught up in the web.

BTW:  Survive Live Well and Live Wisely volume #2 is now available on Kindle.  We give some tips on how to make it through the dark and cold months as well as information to keep you safe and secure at all times.



"This Little Light of Mine"

With nearly two more months to go, this fall/winter season has already been filled with more sadness than many could have imagined.  Out of control wildfires that then precipitated giant mudslides, left many homeless, their entire family history burned or washed away.  Extreme cold temperatures in many areas brought everything from annoying difficulties to death. Inane violence to innocent people occurs regularly. Stories of abuse, physical and mental, fill the airwaves, predators indiscriminately exploiting adults as well as our children.  We’ve dealt with power failures that caused transportation hubs throughout the world to temporarily collapse and governments, shut down because of the child-like bickering and theatrics of those who were elected to work for the people and not, their political party.

            Darkness falls early, sucking away the warmth that light brings.  The winter darkness embraces fear, desolation, and loneliness. According to the Statistic Brain Research Institute, the month with the most average number of deaths in the US is January, followed by December, February and then March.  Obviously, not all these deaths are seasonally related, but when you consider home fires from faulty heating or electrical systems, auto related accidents as well as colds and flu, the chances of dying does seem to increase.  Add to that the number of elderly and homeless who simply pass away from lack of adequate heat or heart attack victims who overexert themselves shoveling snow. 

One of the best “survival” techniques for getting through this time of the year with at least an ounce of sanity is optimism.  Yes, the sun will come out tomorrow.  We may not see it through the rain and sleet, but the sun is definitely still out there.  Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year, reminds us that yes, today the darkness will fall, but tomorrow will be a tiny bit lighter and the day after that, lighter still.  Soon the sun will warm the earth and new life will spring forth.   All we’ve got to do is focus on the light and not get sucked into the darkness.  While we wait for that big ball in the sky to do its thing, let’ see if we can spread a little sunshine of our own.  “I’m gonna let it shine.”

Volume #2 of Survive Live Well and Wisely will be out shortly on Kindle with articles dealing with winter and how best to get through it safely and suggestions for getting a head start on spring.