Tag Archives: snow

Have You Hugged An Easter Alpaca?

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How cute are these two? Still in the paper bag when they arrived home. I’m keeping the pastel one and have named her Rainbow. She has moved into my office. Easter alpacas on sale. Is this a great country or what?

by Kimberly A. Cook

Bought two alpacas yesterday. Don’t freak, they were stuffed toys. Gotcha! The last thing I need is something else to take care of, as cute as alpacas may be. I like having the excuse to drive up the Columbia River Gorge or over to Sisters to make personal alpaca visits.

They were a complete impulse buy. I was on a mission for potting soil and ended up with these two cuties as well. One is a gift, one is for writing inspiration. Seems the next fiction book in my Vintage Vets series involves alpacas. Animals just keep showing up in my writing. I am not in charge.

But first I feel I should apologize to the USA residents in the East. Sorry about all the stupid snow. It was 69 degrees here yesterday, a fluke and we loved it, hence the potting soil trip. Rain again today, so back to our regularly scheduled weather.

When you live on the West coast, for me everything past Montana is back East. I have been told by Midwesterners that is not correct, but it works for us out here. Imagine that is why in Hawaii we are all “the mainland” because the rest of the country is East to them, except for Alaska which is North and East.

Potting soil bags does mean Spring is on its way. I’m downing the allergy pills to prove it. The two toys were on sale as Easter alpacas. Never heard of Easter alpacas, but I fell for it. Sometimes you just need an Easter alpaca.

What Spring rituals are you looking forward to?

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Looking For Spring?

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So this was the scene outside my office window after midnight last week. I looked out at 11:44 p.m. and nothing on the ground. At 12:30 a.m. this is what I saw.  Sneak attack snow storm! The third or fourth of the week.

by Kimberly A. Cook

That makes two of us. We had rolling snow storms last week, the arctic equivalent of the movie “Ground Hog Day.” The daffodils were not prepared and tried to go back in the ground. Didn’t work.

I ended up doing combat grocery shopping last Tuesday during the morning snow storm to avoid going out in the afternoon snow storm. When the snow shows up in Oregon, we go to the store and stock up, on donuts. Those shelves were stripped bare. Not a Ho Ho in sight.

And now I am two days into Olympics withdrawal. I suddenly have all this time on my hands. Except I do have a bunch of Hallmark movies on my DVR again after the Olympics. Spring better come soon or I won’t be able to get out of the LaZBoy.

But I have been able to do a ton of reading and writing. How fun. Nothing like being trapped by a snow storm to give you the excuse to read. And munch donuts. I did not buy donuts. I bought Marion berry pie. The cookies were a gift, so I’m not responsible.

Did slog out in one of the snow storms to buy more Fairy Rock Garden accessories. It was a fifty percent off sale and I had an additional twenty percent off coupon. Almost free! I drive a Subaru because I have to get to fairy garden equipment sales in snow storms. Makes complete sense to me. Fewer pesky shoppers in my way too.

Fairy Rock Garden bling makes me happy. Planning for warm weather activities makes me happy. Spring will come again!

Got Spring goals?

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Spring Cleaning Choices?

by Kimberly A. Cook                          (Twitter@  WarriorTales)

The sun came out last Friday and I played hooky from my blog. It was SO exciting. People were nice to each other in the stores, it got warm inside Subie with passive solar and folks were speeding like maniacs; until they hit a killer pothole. The rain poured again Saturday, but it popped out on Sunday and I played in my yard and garage.

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How fabulous does this display look at Monticello Antiques? The light coming in from the right was actual sun on Friday.

 

With apologies to the folks in the Northeast getting pounded by snow today, the rest of us are having Spring dreams while the rain settles in again in Oregon. Rumors of sun breaks on Thursday and Sunday have us all giddy with expectation.

My goal is to get all the inside chores done so when the good weather shows up, I can move outside to play. My new acronym is C.O.D. – clean, organized and decluttered. Noticed one of my declutter books in a pile of books on the floor of my bedroom the other day. Think that might be defeating its purpose.

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How cute is this sign at Monticello’s? Truer words were never spoken. Not the best shot due to low light, since I hate flash, but you get the idea! 

 

While I gear up to attack my closet for a brutal purge which requires empty garage sale boxes, chocolate and tissues to survive, I wanted to share one of my favorite shopping spots again. Some folks have such a knack for displaying items not only for sale, but in their homes too. My goal is to clear the floors.

Spec Ops Cat is always helping out with the housework by supervising. This photo was him working hard in the office yesterday while I was editing my fiction book. He strives for nap perfection. Pretty sure he had the ten thousand hours for mastery before he turned four. He’s always practicing, like right now in the exact same spot while I write this blog. So dedicated to his job.

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Words of wisdom from Spec Ops Cat for the folks back East in the snowstorm; nap hard, nap deep. He’s a Ninja Nap Master.   

Spring officially arrives Monday, so hope they can dig out of the snow in time to celebrate back East. We have flood warnings the end of this week. The ground refuses to take more water and even Idaho is dumping its rain water into our Columbia River.  Grab the sandbags, it must be Spring!

Are you Spring cleaning?  Or napping like Spec Ops Cat?

 

 

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Can Warm Memories Fight Snowmares?

by Kimberly A. Cook                  (Twitter@  WarriorTales)

Mother Nature is cranky. We just got a Special Weather Statement predicting another snowstorm and possible freezing rain. Weather Service says small accumulation, tv stations say two to four inches; last time they both predicted that we got a foot of snow followed by ice. Sigh.

I’m sure the ice cream and chip rush is on at the grocery stores, especially with Super Bowl this weekend. Snacks rule! Since December when this weird weather started, I’ve cleaned out my bathroom cabinets and drawers, my pantry, three stacks of old newspapers and started my taxes. At this rate my house will be spotless by May, a rare occurrence.

So to perk us all up, I’ve decided to recycle some of my favorite photos. I need to remind myself there is a warm season when my toes can run naked in sandals, I don’t have to wear four layers of clothes and there are actual rose blooms in my backyard. Note to self, must get busy on more Fairy Rock Garden building plans….

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My favorite place on the planet, my lawn swing. Nap heaven.

 

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The Double Delight. A favorite rose in my back yard.

 

 

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Chipmunk hijinks! This Batman and Robin pair in Eastern Oregon gave me a run for my money to catch their pic.

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Let’s not forget the berry bounty! Before baking it looks fabulous. After, not so much. More practice needed.

 

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And a sunny summer day at Depoe Bay, Oregon. Break out the flip flops!

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Can You Say Snow Cone?

by Kimberly A. Cook                 (Twitter@  WarriorTales)

So here’s the deal. Last weekend I bought a new snow shovel because we were supposed to get a few inches of snow on Tuesday-Wednesday. The prior storm I used a round-tipped shovel to try and scrape ice and it was not an effective tool. Went to Ace Hardware and bought a square snow shovel gem for $9.99. Bargain.

Then my Mom bought new snow boots Tuesday. Next my sister and brother-in-law decided they needed a new snow shovel too and got one from Ace Hardware on Tuesday. The snow started around 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday. It dumped at two inches an hour. I apologize Portland!

So a foot of snow later and icy temperatures, I used that spiffy new shovel on Wednesday. A lot. I got to use it yesterday too. But the sun is out and it is a balmy 25 degrees which is hot for the past several weeks, so we’re good.

I’m not going anywhere until Monday when the monsoons come in and melt all this.There is a large snow drift outside my garage door which can just turn to rain, thank you very much.

But Nora our fabulous Polar Bear at the Oregon Zoo had a blast in the fresh snow. The elephants were pretty pumped too. The Oregon Zoo has been closed, but the animals are having a blast without us visitors. Par-tee!

Happy Quirky Friday! Stay warm!

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Winter Photo Wrap Up?

by Kimberly A. Cook                 (Twitter@  WarriorTales)

Optimistic headline at best, but I can dream can’t I? With another potential snowstorm heading in to the Portland area tonight, wanted to share some more pics of the season. One of the few things I’ve been able to achieve these two months is taking photos.

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Clear, crisp and sunny. East wind enough to rip your lips off. So pretty.  

 

A quick trip to Mom’s place on Jan. 7 featured clear views of both Mt. Hood and Mt. St. Helens. Besides the East wind blowing my skin off my face and my eyebrows turning to ice, it was lovely. Trees were in front of Mt. Hood, but got this shot of Mt. St. Helens across the farm lands.

She was such a pretty mountain before she blew her top off on May 18, 1980. She looked like a pile of sugar before, now she has a flat top. A volcanic buzz cut so to speak. But the snow still makes her shine.

The next day another snowstorm hit. I’d done my duty by refilling the birdie food, putting out the suet block and making sure the bird bath heater was keeping their water warm; a balmy 33 degrees. When it is 14 degrees out before the wind chill, bath water matters. This little feathered friend appears to be ready to throw himself in the middle of the pile of food. I do not judge.

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Since this was taken through a window, not as clear, but the bird doesn’t care. If that was kettle corn popcorn, I’d throw myself in there too.  

 

Last but not least was this pic I took on Christmas Eve. Spec Ops Cat and I were watching the Hallmark Channel’s Yule Log presentation with Happy the Cat and Happy the Dog. SOC became quite interested in Happy the Cat. Think he thought there was an invasion.

When the kittens showed up for Happy the Cat to play with, SOC had to go investigate. He even went so far as to look behind the flat screen tv to find one of the kittens. Stealth kitten was not to be found. Once SOC was sure there were no additional felines in the house, he cuddled up for a long winter’s nap.

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Spec Ops Cat always on perimeter patrol, in case Happy The Cat tries to invade from the tv.

 

No idea how long this crazy weather is going to last all over the country, but we can be sure Spring and Summer will come again; not soon enough for me!

Happy winter photo taking. Wear your mittens!

 

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Got Fun Snow Pics?

by Kimberly A. Cook                            (Twitter@  WarriorTales)

For the three people in the lower 48 states who don’t have snow at the moment, I wanted to send along some photos to get you in the holiday mood. For the rest of us who’ve about had it with the ice/sleet/freezing rain/snow debacles, maybe these will give you a smile.

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This little hedgehog guy was a gift from a friend and graces one of the impatien pots in the backyard. Thought I’d rounded all the critters up and put them in the garage, but I missed this cutie. He appeared out of the melting snow. Got to love that smile!

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Always on the job, farmer bunny is still hard at work trying to remove snow when he’s not pushing around posies during the summer. He’s got quite a good crop of snow in this picture. Bun also insists on wearing his overalls without a coat, even in this cold weather. Iron Bun!

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Ever alert, the gnome guard at the Fairy Rock Garden stayed at his post and kept up surveillance during the storms. He must have gotten wind of the mouse family who invaded the garage and isn’t taking any chances. Even though the fairies have not yet moved into these cottages, they are still under construction, he is on the job keeping their future homes safe.

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Of course the only things left behind by these invaders were their tiny footsteps. Or claw prints to be exact. They all seemed to be right around the pile of bird feed put out before the storms started. Not sure I can get an ID on these perps, but bet they have feathers.

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This little guy doesn’t have any snow on his feet, but I bet he’s the lookout for the bigger gang. He found time to bask in the short sun spot, like I’ve done when it shows up.

If you’re up to your keister in snow and sick of it, try taking some fun snow pics or at least coming up with new swear words. I tried both yesterday while I was scraping ice off the front sidewalk. The ice won!

Wishing you all happy holidays, warm homes, holiday cookies, eggnog and may all your tv and tech devices stay on!

 

 

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