February. Why?

I don’t know why this month’s always so difficult. Okay winter, but it’s short. It should be easy.

But we have ice on the lane, ice on the patio, dogs who don’t want to be outside more than five minutes. Who can blame them?  We have cold. We have gloom. Then how about some more gloom? With some ice and sleet and whatever else February wants to toss down.

Then we have Thursday. Suddenly it’s sixty degrees. I hear birds celebrating. I don’t get outside myself for long, but when I do, it’s ahhhh. Between the rain and the sudden warm, the ice is just a bad memory.

Then Saturday happens. Gloom is back, and cold. And let’s just throw in some snow. It wouldn’t be such a thing, except psychotic February gave us Thursday. Why?

Winter as far as the eye can see. Photo by NR
So due to snow, and the fact my guy’s coming home, I spent most of snowy Saturday in the kitchen. Pasta e fagioli sounds good, and the traveler’s very fond of my sour dough pretzel rolls.
Soup on simmer. Photo by NR
Pretzel bread at the ready. Photo by NR
It’s a nice way for me to spend a February day, and it’ll be good to see my guy again. Even though . . . this is my kitchen counter without a man in the house, even after making soup and bread.
Then, Photo by NR
And this is my kitchen counter after BW.
Now. Photo by NR

It soothes my double Libra soul to have the tidy. Clutter and chaos just bring on a underlying stress I mostly ignore because, well, life and I do share that life and the house with a male.

I’ve always shared life and houses with males. A father and four brothers. A husband and two sons. I happen to know not all men are messy, but mostly the ones who aren’t don’t live in my little world.

The offset here, other than I actually love my man, is someone else will go outside on the frigid mornings to feed the dogs, take out the trash and recycling. That same someone will plow the snow off the lane. That someone will do the dishes after I cook, even if he appears to be genetically incapable of cleaning off the counters or stovetop.

Note to BW: (A few swipes with a questionable dishcloth is not cleaning off.)

Still, February’s more than half over. I don’t wish time away–ever–but that doesn’t mean I can’t think about spring while I’m looking out at my snowy woods. It’ll be harder to take when they’re forecasting close to 70s later in the week.

Psychotic February. You just have to take it as it comes.

Nora

 Cranky Publicist note (or…And Now something different):

As the winter yang to Nora’s winter yin — in the summer we reverse — I must speak up for those of us who go outdoors in the cold months.  While I’m grateful on the truly miserable days to work in a home office, I need to put on layers and get outside at least once a week to breathe and reset.

The rewards abound: I found gorgeous blue skies and ice sculptures in Frederick.  Roses under sulky gray skies in NYC.  Reds and golds and dragons in NYC’s Chinatown to celebrate the dawn of the Year of the Dog.

Summer will be here way too quickly (the mid-week forecast is closer to 80 in my elevation — yikes!) for my thick blood, while Nora will embrace the warmth with thanks and celebration.  (And WHY does the summer contain TWO months with 31 days?  The winter haters get February.  I want a February.)

And yet, the seasons will turn and we’ll each have our moments in the sun.

Blue skies, white spires, red brick. Photo by LMR
Dragon-y ice. Photo by LMR
NYC roses in winter. Photo by LMR
Dragon on parade. Photo by LMR
Lanterns. Photo by LMR

46 thoughts on “February. Why?”

  1. Thank you Nora, for the nice visit.

    Laura, I’m with you. I think all summer months should be a February.

    1. I used to feel that way until I realized something. It wouldn’t be fair to the people like Nora who actually like summer and summer activities to have all summer months be February. I agree with you and Laura that summer is the nasty season.

  2. Oh it’s a Monday post! I love Monday posts! Helps kick my week off to a good start. Have to side with Nora here though, I’m a winter hater. I should have been a bear, then I could hibernate through it! Thanks for sharing ladies, love the pics.

  3. This February has been a bit crazy.. maybe we won’t have a crazy March, but up here in CT we got to make the best snowman of the year yesterday only to be expecting it to be in the 60s this week… so one can’t complain. Too much!! Anyone I am so with you on having a guy around to take care of all that maintanence stuff that is always intruding on our lives…this is sure not Hawaii:) Always love your blog..and am inspired to go out and get some cut flowers for my own counter. 🌸🌼🌸

  4. For the first time, my husband grumbled about wanting February to be over this past weekend. For me…it is always January. I told him that all indoor projects need to be finished before he has fun in the sun. I am ready for spring to come as we now await for the President Day storm. In Minnesota one never knows how much or little we will get❄️❄️❄️

  5. I am not a winter lover but I do like February. My father, one of my granddaughters and I have February birthdays. As if that wasn’t good enough we throw in Groundhog Day and Valentines Day. Seems like a lot for such a short month!

  6. Oh, the soup. I swear I can smell the soup right now. I’m in Missouri and our weather has been a roller coaster, too. Last Thursday it was 80 degress, this Wednesday we are expecting frigid temps and ice. I say frigid (30 degrees and that’s below freezing, so it’s frigid to me) . Give me the 90 degree days. Laura – the pictures were great but I couldn’t believe there are roses blooming in NYCity – what?? How can that be? I’m sure Nora will be enjoying her soup again for lunch today – enjoy .

  7. I used to feel that way until I realized something. It wouldn’t be fair to the people like Nora who actually like summer and summer activities to have all summer months be February. I agree with you and Laura that summer is the nasty season.

  8. In Ireland February is the first month of spring. LÀ LE Bride ist Feb. When children make St Brigid crosses. Despite the incliment weather daffodils are making their way. Lambs are born and most importantly the morning, evening are brighter

  9. Thank you for sharing. Nora that bread looks yummy. I wish I could make bread. I would love to have your snowy isolation. I’m in northern Florida, so we are already in spring with full pollen on EVERYTHING !! I’m with Laura, I enjoy the colder times… Laura, your pictures are truly amazing.

  10. I don’t care for the winter for one reason and that’s because I have to drive late at night in whatever nature has thrown on the rolling, hilly roads where I live. I hate white knuckle driving with a passion.

    However, if I am well stocked with food for both myself and all of my animals, if I have several dump truck loads of wood under tarps and ready for the wood burners, then I’m good. Yes the house is cold when I get home from work but I stir the embers, add kindling and starter logs and all is fine.

    I don’t have air condition so I can only cool off so much during the summer. But then, my favorite season is Fall and always will be.

  11. I moved from Central Iowa to East TN almost 2 years ago to get away from cold, snow and ice. I LOVE it here! Yes, we’ve had cold weather this winter season (and some snow and ice…but its always gone within 24 hours); but all in all I can’t complain when I’m looking at a week of temps in the 70s…in February! Hang in there Nora…Spring is just a mere 31 days away!

  12. February really is amid-January and pre-March…Being born in February I always wished I had a warm weather birthday so I could have all those fun girlie parties. Then my husband and I decided or had it forced on us…to get married Feb. 1st. He was working in Boston so this little Midwestern girl agreed to that date….not Groundhog Day! 43 years later…still a good day! Oddly our wedding day was a beautiful bright sunny winter Wisconsin day…After the ceremony, we had a blizzard!! Again…we’ve survived 43 years of sunshine And Blizzards.
    Think positive…winter gives us more time to read!

  13. Laura, I don’t know how you survive that humidity! I don’t like the heat, either, but in arid Colorado it’s almost survivable. As much as I loved the five years I lived in Virginia, the humidity finally drove me back home. Great pictures, both of you – thanks so much for sharing! Wise of BW, to not come home until the irritation of the black-out has faded – lol.

  14. Nora and Laura, since I happen to not only like the cold weather and was born in February (my pre-birthday vacation to Antarctica a few years ago, was the best vacation I have ever had!), I have to agree with Laura. You can always put on enough clothes to be warm and go out, but unless you live in a nudist colony, you can’t take off your clothes to cool down.
    During the winter, if it gets below freezing, I switch to my down coat, add gloves and I’m good to go! If it’s windy or below 20°, I will add a scarf and hat to cover my ears. The only concession I’ve made to the years (I’ll be 70 tmrrw) is very sturdy boots (UGGS or BearClaws) when there’s snow and/or ice on the ground. It’s more due to having 4 major back operations in the last 5 years, then age, as my spine is deteriorating, and I cannot afford a fall or wrrenching my back. I have about 18 screws, 2 large plates and 3 cadaver bones (to replace those already crumbled beyond repair). I have to get out in the cold, if no more than to get a quart of milk or some yogurt. Any excuse to get out the house. As I live on a major street in NYC, we’re always shoveled out, as soon as snow falls. I’m fortunate to have a large grocery store less than 5 minutes away and a younger neighbor who takes out my garbage and recyclables (I “pay” him with lasagna, stuffed shells, manicotti, and other Italian recipes. He doesn’t know how to cook 🙁 ).
    Nora, my ex-husband was meticulous about his clothes, but I would come home and find the kitchen sink piled with dirty dishes, baby bottles, the stove, counters, our daughter’s high chair all filthy! But, his clothes never had a spot on them! I found out later her wore a diaper as an apron (cloth diapers, pre-Pampers). My daughter was taught to clean as she cooked and to clean carefully the stovetop, counters and table. We’re now teaching my 10yr old granddaughter the same. She’s fortunate that her husband is a clean freak! When he cleans the kitchen, it’s sanitized like an operating room
    Laura, thanks for the pictures!
    Remember what Eve said…. February’s a short month. It will be over next week. Tomorrow’s supposed to be in 60’s, but we might have snow by next week. March will probably give us 1 or 2 more snow storms, then go out like a lamb (what does that mean?).

  15. Ah the joys of winter I love some of it. Enjoying the warmth of my home while the wind and snow blows outside. Also I enjoy a walk in the brisk air, a very short walk. I love summer too spending time outside without putting on twenty layers. I also am interested in the recipe for the rolls if Nora is willing to share. Above all hang on warmer weather is coming and together we will survive.

  16. Laura, I totally agree with you. My youngest sister, like Nora, doesn’t like the cold and hates when I complain about the about the heat and humidity. Weather here in Massachusetts this year has been weirder than usual. We had snow Saturday night andand it’s almost all melted. 47 degrees right now.

  17. California is having its psychotic February as well with summer temperatures and no rain followed by mornings in the 30s, but still no rain. We all have our favorite times of the year. I love the fall with the changing colors and the bit of nip in the air. The ice sculpture and the roses are georgeous. The pretzel rolls look yummy (I love starchy foods). The seasons will come every year Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall, and we will enjoy or not as our natures dictate.

  18. I can’t wait for spring when I can turn off the furnace and open the windows. But then summer happens and the window close and the AC goes on and I can’t wait for fall!

  19. Dear Nora,
    We don’t have snow were I live but we have gray skies and gloomy fog. I am like you and long for sunshine and warmth. However, on gloomy cold days I can convince myself that curling up with one of your books and a cup of tea (or glass of wine) is just what the day calls for. The first book of yours I ever read was 11 years ago. My late mother and older sister sent me The Circle Trilogy for Christmas. I’ve been hooked ever since and have read everything of yours I could get my hands on. I horde your books because I read and re-read every one of them. I have my favorites but have yet to find one that I didn’t like. I started and finished Chronicles of 1, Book 1 just yesterday and can’t wait for the next. Thank you so much for your ability to pull me in and make me laugh out loud and cry buckets of tears through your stories and characters.
    Suzanne

  20. I’m neither a winter nor a summer person. I love spring & fall. What I really need is to find a place where it never gets colder than 32 nor hotter than 75. That would be heaven on earth. Laura, love your pictures.

  21. Such a nice treat to get this blog. Thank you Nora. As far as weather I have to agree with Laura. We had a rainy foggy day last week and I took a lovey walk in the magical mist. I enjoy each cool moment and dread the summer. My biggest summer joy is getting daily Nora vacation blogs and hopefully some more #RandomKatness to go along with it.

  22. Love your photos Laura, I also saw the Frederick Ice Sculptures. I’m with Nora tho on February. It has often been said that April is the cruelest month…no way, hope is here in April. I will take those tease days of springlike temps with a big Thank You to Mother Nature!
    BW and my husband treat “negative space” the same…I think mine thinks the goal of any dresser top, end table, or counter top is to be a display shelf for all his treasures.
    Also, I cook and he cleans up (supposedly) yet he doesn’t see the stove and island. His redemption is that he makes the coffee and unloads the dishwasher each morning. He gets up between 5 and 5:30am and me between 7 and 7:30am according to him I sleep away 1/2 of the day!

  23. I live in Missouri. When someone says the weather can’t possibly go through all 4 Seasons in a day. Missouri says “hold my beer” . Weather can go from 80s in the morning to winter in the evening. You just never know.

    1. Like today for instance. I’m also from Missouri – woke up with the temps around 65 and a possible ice storm moves in this evening. 🙂

    2. I love that expression “hold my beer” 🙂
      We have four seasons in one day too, except in bada** months like December and August that wear their Season’s badge with proud, vengeance and merit.

  24. I’m with Nora I hate the cold. We’ve had a dab of ice and snow here in Texas. Today was wonderful around 70 degrees. I love being able to go outside without layers of clothing and still have that darned cold wind to fight. We had a nice south wind today and warm temps. I’m hoping spring is on its way to Texas at long last we’ve had too much bitter cold for us.

  25. I’m Gemini and I enjoy all seasons… except when it’s too hot but only due to health reasons.
    I’m with Nora – and I repeat I live for Winter (and all the other seasons 😉 ) – feeling this February seemed too long (felt longer that the never-ending January, for me). This year at least as I don’t have memory of feeling like this previously.
    Before the cranky publicist note I was going to throw Laura’s Instagram 😉 against Nora-I-want-Summer-as-in-now-with-some-Spring-for-gardening-please-thank-you’s 😉
    So blessed to live in a world that everyone takes what’s bets from what there is and we have FITS for Nora cooking, Insta and all the rest for Laura. It would be awfully boring to have only a perfect season all the year if you ask me 😉
    Take Care. Be Safe and Warm before it’s time to go to the garden… soon.

  26. We’re forecast to break a record high today; hitting 76. We had snow on Saturday. It’s been like this all winter; up & down, altho we’ve not hit that high a temp till now, but we’ve had way more ice this year than normal & that’s because the rain keeps coming, the cold fronts come thru & the rain changes to freezing rain to ice to snow. Rarely goes the other way! Ah well, La Nina Winter.

    But rejoice, I have snowdrops blooming, crocus peeking thru, daffodil, grape hyacinth & hellbore (Lenten Rose) buds showing, and Spring Training has started! Proof; the days keep turning!

  27. After getting slammed with a major winter storm here in good ol’ Utah yesterday and this morning, I am more than ready for spring. It’s not that I hate winter. I just hate that when it snows, everyone forgets how to drive.

    *sigh*

    Have a good week, Nora and Laura.

      1. For some reason, the weather changes here in the Rockies bring out the “duhhhh . . .” in people. Be safe in the rain!

  28. We set records here last week…78 in Feb. Why? I have flowers and herbs popping up, and they will just get snowed in again. Kentucky weather…gotta love it. Lovely pics from both of you. As a fellow Libra Nora, I understand your point.

  29. February’s always been a bear for me. For some reason, the shortest month usually brings with it twice as much activity; and, therefore, angst. Thank God for those 28 days. That being said, I do enjoy the cold, and the lack of bugs. Can’t imagine that come August I’ll actually “long for” February, but it’s guaranteed I’ll be craving a cool breeze or 20. Thank you, Nora and Laura for the pictures and warm and cool thoughts…

  30. I agree about winter, need more spring and fall. I do not like the cold but do not mind the cool if that makes sense. Doing half-marathons in the heat is exhausting, therefore, I like cool. The soup and pretzel rolls look scrumptious! Bring on spring!

  31. I LOVED Dark in Death!! I’ve read all of Nora’s in Death books, and a few are my favorites – add this one to the list!! Yes, February – the dregs of winter. There’s something psychological about the first day of March just because March is supposed to mean Spring. Hah! Mother nature is on her broom!

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