Tuesday, February 13, 2018

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

What I think was a young Cooper's Hawk stopped by recently to visit our garden gnome.

I think he was actually checking out the action around our bird feeder.

Happy Wednesday, everyone!

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Sunday, February 11, 2018

Sunday Stealing: Brrr

Wow, it's been many months (well, a couple anyway) since I posted anything here at joysweb. Had some minor but time-consuming health issues during the Holidays. Then M and I both managed to get the flu just before Christmas. (He said, "You know, I think I might be coming down with something" and an hour later his temperature was up to 104.) Officially, we're over it now, but I've been surprised at how long it's taken us both to "bounce back." I guess at our age, any kind of bouncing gets harder and harder.

So I haven't had a huge amount of energy lately, and whatever I've had has been mostly devoted to my book blog and all those advance reader copies of books I need to read. But I do want to get things going on this blog again, so thought I'd start with a little Sunday Stealing (now hosted by Bev Sykes) -- always a fun thing to do.

This week's questions are in honor of the start of the Winter Olympics and are stolen from Bogglesworld.

1. Do you prefer winter or summer? Why?
Summer. I just really hate cold weather and need lots of sunshine to stay sane.
2. What are your favorite winter activities?
Hibernation, checking the thermostat, and staring at the photos from last summer's trip to Hawaii.
3. Can you tell me about a time you went skiing or skating?
Are you crazy, or what?
4. Have you ever made a snow angel?
There's no way I'd insert that much of my body into snow. 
5. Is your house cold?
At the moment, it seems a little chilly. But it's a little colder outside today too. 
6. Do you have a fireplace in your house?
Yes, but we've never used it for a fire. Makes a nice place to hang the Christmas stockings, though.
7. What do you usually do to keep warm in the winter?
Stay indoors.
8. Have you ever gone hiking in the snow?
Yes. Against my better judgment. 
9. Tell me about a snowball fight you had.
Nothing to tell. I grew up in a snow-free zone. I think M and I did throw a few handfuls of snow at each other when we experienced our first snowfall after we were married and living in the Texas panhandle. That got really boring really fast. 
10. Have you ever looked at a snowflake carefully?
Yes, individually they're amazing and beautiful. Together, they're nasty and scary. 
11. Do you have a sled? Have you been sledding?
No and no. Well, I do have a couple of decorative mini-sleds in with the Christmas ornaments and dolls.
12. What do you usually do after a big snowfall?
Curse whatever snow gods created it. 
13. What’s the best thing about winter?
Here in central Texas, the best thing about winter is that it's usually over by the end of February. This year, we're not feeling so sure about that.  
14. What’s the worst thing about winter?
It's not summer.
15. Have you ever been in a blizzard?
Several times. It never got to be fun. 
16. Can you describe ice for me?
Hmmm. Cold. Hard. Great in cocktails and sno-cones. Good for preserving food, lowering fever, soothing aches and pains. Not so wonderful on roads and sidewalks. 
17. Have you ever slipped on ice and hurt yourself?
Yes. Don't remind me. 
18. Have you ever had to shovel snow?
Fortunately, no. I've helped a little when M has done it, but no real shoveling. When we lived in Virginia, he frequently had to dig the car out of the snowy parking lot in winter. I mostly watched from our balcony, above. This is a shot I took of him at work, during what was quite possibly the last big snow event I've experienced, back in 2010. I felt really bad about not helping. Yes, I did.

19. Will you be watching the Olympics?
Yes. Strangely, I love the winter Olympics. All that snow is lovely to look at on the TV screen -- or Christmas cards. I just don't want to be out IN it. 
20. If yes, what are your favorite events?
Well, I like the skating, but that's mostly done indoors. But I love the skiing too, and lately I've gotten interested in the luge competitions. Also enjoy the snowboarding stuff, but I'm always afraid one of those kids is going to screw up and break his/her neck while I'm watching.