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It is a very frosty morning this morning. I was up and out early to deliver a child to SATs. There was a lot of sunshine and a lot of frost and the temperature on the thermometer only read 12 degrees. The sunshine made everything very sparkly. Happy Saturday!

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After having successfully sidestepped the colds that were abounding through our house from a variety of sources, it appears that I have succumbed, Tom too. The boys have been toying with various forms of a cold and our oldest probably had it the worst last weekend, which make sense that this weekend, I feel quite like crap. 

I am not a good person to be sick, because being sick enough to feel crappy usually only makes me mad and guilty. When you are not completely out –like with a stomach bug or the flu, where you wish someone would shoot you, a cold is miserable and annoying. You feel bad enough to not want to do anything, but good enough to feel guilty about not doing anything. Throw in lack of a few good nights of sleep due to cold symptoms and you have one very conflicted and cranky person. 

Yesterday I felt rather out of sorts which went downhill as the day progressed. Didn’t sleep well last night and then today, I feel just miserable enough to want to lounge on the couch all day but bad enough to feel incredibly guilty about spending the free time of my weekend doing nothing. 

So, today I made pumpkin granola, granola bars, cleaned out all the old magazines from the rack, cleaned the bottom drawer of our bookcase and cleaned the bottom of the closet in our bathroom which incidentally still had a couple boxes of bathroom stuff from when we moved up six years ago. 

 

Baby, it is cold outside.

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-11 outside this morning but it has warmed up…..to -4. They are forecasting winds picking up this afternoon to 25 mile per hour gusts which will account for windchill temperatures near -50 by the ridge of the Green Mountains (which happens to be us).

Winter has arrived without a doubt.

Stay warm and cover up if you have to venture outside, even if it’s only a quick run outside to the car.

This morning I went to open the screen door to let the dog out and I thought that my fingers were going to stick to the metal handle.

The boys all wore coats to school. For those of you who know the boys, yes, it’s that cold outside.

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Fred Ott's Sneeze (film by William K.L. Dickson)

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The boys have been back to school for a little over two weeks. We lasted that long, but I’m pretty sure it’s still a record. Tyler developed a miserable cold pretty much overnight. Tim is falling fast, he has been sneezing his head off tonight and sounds sniffly. As I type this I heard repetitive sneezing coming from the upstairs. Never a good sign.  Tom and I have felt less than great as the day has worn on. We know it is only a matter of time….tick, tock, tick, tock.

When I told the boys that they could get me anything for my birthday, I didn’t mean a cold….but I’m sure that’s what I will have by the time my birthday rolls around at the end of the week.

But I am trying really hard to find the positive side of things….keep a smile on my face and all that jazz. So I’m thinking…….

 

At least it’s not the stomach bug.

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for the other shoe to drop. Sunday night and yesterday, oldest son was sick with a fever and horrific cough. He is better today – no fever – so he will be off to school. We never have just one of us get sick (I guess that is the beauty of family – we share in the misery equally) so it’s just a matter of time waiting to see who is next. I am willing to bet money that I get it just in time for the back to back dinners we have this weekend. For Friday’s Pasta Dinner I have to make two trays of ziti and a tray of meatballs as well as a dessert. For Saturday’s dinner, there’s dessert again.

There’s only a handful of us cooking for the fundraising dinner on Friday, so no opportunities to back out. I have to guard against getting this for Friday. Look for me, I’ll be packing the Lysol in a double holster.

Baby, it’s cold outside. The weatherlore about it being the coldest either immediately before or immediately after a January thaw is pretty accurate. At least this year, it is.  We have had temperatures in the zero to below zero range along with wind chills approaching -35. Today the high was supposed to be 8 degrees and while it might have hit that in Rutland, here on the hill the temperatures hovered around zero, give or take a degree.

I just came in from a walk (a rather brisk walk since it is so cold out) and tried to get Tyler to go with me. He insisted that he might freeze to death (highly unlikely when we were only walking 1/2 mile total) but he assured me that if I didn’t come back, he would assume that I had frozen to death and send his father, when he got home. Comforting, isn’t it?

For those of you who have been burning with desire to know, here is what it looks like outside our window in the dead of night. This is a picture of the Christmas cactus as we affectionately call our little maple tree in lights. Looking more like a cactus, although there are those among us that swear it looks like the Christmas Chicken from a certain angle, the little maple glows in the LED lights against the snow.

Out the front, here’s a view of the porch and its lights. Very peaceful, very quiet. We are expecting wind chills today of -25. Nice day to spend indoors. And don’t ask why I’m taking pictures at 4 a.m. – that’s just another post all together.

The weather matched our spirits around here today. Cold and rainy. The day started off with a trip to the hospital for an MRI for our oldest son to help diagnose a strange lump on his rib. After some confusion about the orders faxed from the doctor, my husband was able to retrieve them and the test proceeded…until the TJ broke the MRI machine. Or at least that’s what my husband told him when they informed us that they wouldn’t be able to do all the images requested since the machine completely died out on them. TJ was somewhat happy because after 20 minutes of laying with his arms above his head and tucked in, both his arms had fallen way asleep.

We also lost one of the chickens today. Last night, one hen never made it in the henhouse and we believe that she was suffering from egg impaction. This morning or rather this afternoon, Tom found her. A proper burial ensued.

To color all of this, we have these colds that are running amuck throughout the family and one of us is more cranky than the other depending upon the hour and the day. Tonight I ordered the middle one to bed (do not pass go, do not collect $200) after catechism class because he is so cranky, he has to be getting sick… again. He came home from a campout this weekend with scouts, complaining of a headache, lack of sleep and overall being miserable and bursting into tears at the drop of a hat. No fun for Mom or Dad when that happens.

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It appears from the latest weather forecast that I will be running around like a lunatic to cover anything and pick everything else out of the garden. Tonight at the soccer games it was cold. A friend who lives in town asked if we had snow up on the hill. Not yet, but it’s coming sooner than we think. Tomorrow evening we are forecast for temperatures in the 20’s and widespread frost. Ah….winter and so it begins…….

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Relaxation is over. The RVs have been returned and the vacation is but a memory. Today I am wading through the contents of two trailers, plus all of the kids’ clothes and paraphernalia that has been accumulating in our den/laundry room through the summer, the canoe trip, the week at scout camp, the soccer camps, the electronics camp and now finally, vacation. Add to the mix, just for fun, the fact that our house is undergoing some renovations at the same time, and literally I cannot find a thing. I hope that someday I will find the things that I have pretty much given up on locating, figuring that they are the things that are hidden well underneath the piles that have been growing here and there.

Be that as it may, tomorrow is the first day of school. For the little one (relaxing so nicely in the photo above) tomorrow is his first day in middle school. For the oldest, it is the first day of high school. (Boy, do I feel old – high school!). The middle guy is entering 8th grade. Everyone is well back in the swing of things as soccer practice started for the 7th and 8th graders yesterday and TJ rejoined his team yesterday after coming back from vacation. Tomorrow is his first scrimmage. We have left the comfort and ease of summer’s lazy days for the more hectic, crazy days of school and fall sports. Our days are no longer our own, but at least we went out with a nice, lazy week at the beach.

I love the fall, the start of school, the beginning of a new year of sorts. I guess that it is perpetual student in me that thinks the year starts more at the beginning of the school year rather than at new year’s. Oh, and by the way, the weather tends to agree since evenings are forecast to dip into the 30s on Thursday night. Brrr…winter cannot be far behind.

At the suggestion of our neighbor and dear friend, we found this great swimming hole/relaxation spot. It is called Buttermilk Falls and is located in Ludlow, VT. Tom and I had driven down this road a couple of times, completely unaware that the falls and the swimming hole lay only a short distance in from the road.

We headed over yesterday, not the best day of the weekend for swimming, with friends who were up visiting for the weekend. We were joking that because of the weather and the temperature (barely 70) we would probably be the only ones there. Little did I know or remember that Vermonters are a hardy bunch (and out-of-staters who have a limited amount of time here, even hardier -or more stubborn). We were surprised to find about a half dozen cars parked at the spot we were directed to by our friend. We parked and hiked in to find about 15 other people there, also swimming. We were joined, as it got darker and more ominous by another 10 or so, making this a pretty darn busy day for the weather.

Here are some of the pictures. Our friends’ 11 year old daughter was the brave one to actually jump in from the rock, although she and Tyler did do a bit of swimming, (although I must say that I think Michele won the prize, since she had the bluest lips)

Overall, it was a really nice afternoon and a place that we will definitely be returning to. If you live nearby or have occasion to be in the area, I highly recommend you give it a try. Even if you don’t go swimming, it is very relaxing and very pretty.

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Map of the falls

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It’s cold, it’s windy – we are stuck in a sort of purgatory here in Vermont. No real signs of spring – although I heard on the radio that people are already reporting cluster flies (now there is something that I can completely do without). There is still some snow, a lot of ice from the snow that melted and even more brown grass and frozen mud. Today is not supposed to get very warm, it is windy as all heck outside and it is supposed to be -5 tonight. Wonderful weather to stay inside by the woodstove – at least we still have that.

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http://tammyheff.wordpress.com
2012.
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