Snowzilla

Here, at least, the weather guys nailed it. They told us it was coming, be prepared, and so it came. We’ve been there, done that many times before, so being prepared is winter routine.
 
We have a plow for the lane, and usually that’ll do the trick. However, Snowzilla mostly came at night, (and laughed and laughed) started late enough so plowing at dusk or dark wasn’t wise.
 

I woke to about sixteen inches and still coming hard. BW had put out his dad’s old, kitschy snowman snow gauge, so I could basically judge the amount without using my old standard, a yardstick.

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Stalwart Snowman gauge
 
By the time my own personal Mr. Plow got himself geared up, we had about 18″. Which proved too much for Mr. Plow. Jeep now stuck. Snowblower’s enough to clear some paths, and the dogs frolic.
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Stuck Jeep, happy Parker
wilder pool
The narrow driveway path
 
We have a guy–my landscape guy–who does snow removal and asphalt parking lot surfacing in Houston TX. We get on the list, knowing he’s got plenty ahead of us. Doesn’t worry me–I’m not going anywhere.
 
I’m still into my January purge. Hit what I think of as the kids’ room as they use it when they sleep over. Hit the bathroom–the linen closet needs attention, hit the library. Then decide I can sit right down in there and read a book in front of the fire as my reward.
 
Snow’s now up to two feet, and still coming. My guy has decided to grill steaks for dinner later. Not odd for us as we grill year-round, so I figure I’ll make soup on Sunday.
 

I talk myself into a workout. No reason I can’t step outside, walk two feet to the gym. I put on my Uggs for the trip. BW’s cleared the path again, so no big. After my righteous workout, I’m grateful for the boots. Path has a good two or three inches on it again. I can hear all you boot nerds saying “wear real boots for winter from shoesfella.com!” but I dont care.

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The roof of the house (left), the roof of the gym (right)
 
It’s gorgeous out there, no question, and a little spooky. On the deck, the snow’s just below the top of the rail. We’re heading toward three feet. But unlike my first experience living here with three feet of snow, I have plenty of provisions, I have a generator if power goes out, and I don’t have two little boys who need time and attention.
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Post storm, snow on the deck
 
I eat steak, I watch a movie. We have that three feet by the time the snow stops–well after dark.
 
Sunday, when I get up before dawn (I just do) the world is absolutely hushed. It’s always quiet here, that’s country living, but the snow cushions all sound so the world is an empty church. I watch the birds attack the feeder for seeds and suet, watch the sun come up. The day brightens with that incredibly sharp contrast of hard blue sky against pure, untouched snow. Nothing but trees, sky, snow, birds as far as I can see. I love it–as long as I’m inside.
wilder driveway
Post storm Sunday look down the drive
 
More purging. The master bedroom this time, and it needs some serious work. Satisfying work. Then it’s time to make some chicken tortilla soup. Yum.
 
Quiet night, with me pleased my entire main level’s now been purged, a good bowl of soup–and the X-Files! Oh, how happy I am to see Mulder and Scully again. Now it’s time for a long, winter’s nap.
 
At about one in the morning, Parker barks like a maniac. And we hear the plow. That’s our Bryan, plowing the lane in the middle of the night. Bless his heart.
 
This morning, we have a plowed lane–but Bryan called to alert us our ‘main’ road is only plowed for one lane. I expect BW will take another day at home. How do you handle meeting another car with only one cleared lane and three feet of snow on the rest? No need to find out, at least to my way of thinking. The man, however, may think differently.
 
Me, I’m going to sit in my warm office, get to work, and look at the snowy postcard out my office window.
 
Hope everyone who got hit with Jonas stayed warm and safe.  
Nora

49 thoughts on “Snowzilla”

  1. Sounds & looks like what I imagined in Gabriel’s Angel (which I just read a few weeks ago). Beautiful!

  2. I’m SO jealous of your snow. Ok, I got that off my chest.

    Do you ever have a problem with the suet freezing? Can the birds still get it if it is?

    1. Sure doesn’t seem to be a problem for them. The problem will be wading out there to refill the feeder!

  3. Only four inches here in Shelby County Kentucky, thank goodness! They were calling for Twelve. It missed us. Went more south. Nothing compared to three feet! 🙂

  4. Thank you, Nora, for the wonderful visual (verbally and in pics) of your snowy postcard. We “only” got 32″ where I live south of Leesburg but it is very pretty. But, alas, no snow plows to my back woods neighborhood yet! I too am purging and organizing. So thankful for your work ethic so we have new books from you all the time!! 🙂
    I am currently rereading all of the J.D. Robb books. Love them the second and third time!
    Blessings
    Mary Lu

  5. Love your house. Not wild about the depth of snow on the roof, though. I have stayed in even though West Tennessee didn’t get anywhere near that much. (Newly retired, lots of groceries in stock, plenty to read or work on, so no need to get out.) Might have to get out tomorrow though, even if it is just to visit my former office mates or walk around WalMart! That was nice of Bryan.

  6. Here in Mossey WV about 23 inches.
    I kept power didn’t have to go out. I choose
    to read the Dream series . Today sun is shining,
    Thanks Nora for the Great reading adventure.

  7. How great was that so love the snow always but mostly in the early morning before the plows its so peaceful. I was also prepared as I use to live in mountains of Northwest New Jersey & you had to prepare could be snowed for days. However I never had that problem as I drive a F-150 & she always got me out & home again. We ended up with about 24 inches
    Thanks so much for sharing.

  8. Sounds like a glorious few days. Purging needs to be done at my house, but since I’m not snowed in, I can’t get motivated! Maybe when the rain hits later this week; maybe not!

  9. Sounds and looks like what I imaged in Gabriel’s Angel (which I just read a few weeks ago). Beautiful!

  10. Well, here in south central Kentucky, we only had a mere 12″ dusting which is still enough to send unprepared folks into a panic. Do these people not check the Weather Channel???

    As for reading on a snowy day, what interests the world-renowned Nora Roberts?

  11. We have about 17″ here in Clark County, KY. I also stayed in this weekend and worked on my house purge. I started in the office/Library, so lots of paper shredded and ready for the compost bin and then moved onto closets, so lots of bags and boxes ready to donate..

  12. Thanks for sharing Nora! Here in New York we got about 22 inches and I spent the weekend purging our house too. I’ve been reading the Life Changing Magic of Tidying to help me!

    Wonder if you have ever shared your recipe for chicken tortilla soup? Sounds delish!

  13. I love your stories and photos, especially the one of Parker and your snowy landscape today. No snow in my area but it’s cold enough to use the fireplace and I’m okay with that because I would be way out of my league in the snow. Thank you for sharing!

  14. Oh dear. No garage? That was the one thing (well, maybe the second thing, after the dishwasher) I was thrilled with when we bought our first house. No more scraping the car in the winter. At least not on the outward journey. Never knew what the car was going to be like when school was over and it was time to go home.

  15. For once, here in Buffalo – NO SNOW! Give it a week or two and we may get some but nothing like you and the Northeast got this past weekend. What a beautiful setting for a home! Thank you for the pictures it is really lovely! Stay warm.

  16. Well, I live in Hot Springs, AR. We were supposed to get 4-5″ Thursday night into Friday morning as the storm rolled east. We got a dusting, and by Friday afternoon, most yards and all streets were void of snow :(. When you don’t get snow often, you get really excited!

    However, because of zero snow, the horse races ran as scheduled on Saturday!

  17. Your place looks like a winter postcard. I like it when I don’t have anywhere to go. It looks like one of those days where you want to snuggle in with a good book or video. Here on the west coast (BC, Canada) we had quite a bit of rain, but yesterday was dry so we drove to Harrison Hot Springs and had lunch drive home. It was a nice drive.

  18. My part of New York City got 26″. I can’t complain- last year we had snow in November- we got a late start this year, but it sure made up for it in volume. We have no snow blower, but a willing strappy 23 year old grandson, who did the steps and sidewalk. The cars and driveway are snowed in- but I’m lucky that I don’t have to be at work. When I had to be at work on sunday morning, & couldn’t get out, my boss dispatched a truck with an order-“pick up one Chevy”. Here I thought we had everything in common- now way. I got a big laugh out of you calling 1 in the morning- the middle of the night! I’m never in bed by then! And getting up at dawn!NO way. But thanks a million- I reread delusion in death- I enjoy all the ID rereads. Only 8 more days till Brotherhood comes out. One year was wild- I walked for 25 minutes in the big snow, to my local Target to get the latest ID book- and they were out! I’m calling this year before I go!

  19. I knew I liked you for more than the books you write!!! The X-Files is one of my most favorite shows ( The Blacklist is #1)
    The pictures of the snow you had is amazing. ours was pitiful, Thank goodness. a light dusting that only lasted a few hours at most.
    Glad you all were safe, and I’m looking forward to Brotherhood!!!

  20. Thanks for sharing your pictures. I love seeing everyone’s snow photos. The last time it snowed it Fort Lauderdale was 39 years ago. It was a sight. Thanks again and stay warm.

  21. 16″ here in Asheville, and my little slice of the mountain was a study in snow draped magick. We were well prepared and hunkered down to wait it out. We were lucky-no power outage-but I’m ready to get out and run the dogs down to the bark park on the river.

  22. I had just moved to Maryland December 2009 when I got smacked with Snowzilla 1 and Snowmagedden 1 in January 2010. I was smarter this time. Had cash to pay someone to shovel, my favorite food and plenty of booze. BTW The Chesapeake series and a 24 hour trip to Annapolis was my catalyst for choosing Maryland to live after Law school.

  23. Thank you for sharing your life and pictures. Your way of writing makes me feel like I’m a friend of yours visiting for awhile.

  24. I spent the entire weekend stuck at work in Atlantic City. The flooding in this part of South Jersey was worse than when we had Hurricane Sandy! Am home now. Your description of your area was lovely. Glad you all stayed safe.

  25. From Switzerland I touched base (FaceTime) with my daughter in Ashburn Virginia every four hours to have her show me the progress of the snow since Friday noon. Here we were enjoying sunshine and cool temperatures (not as cold as could be for a normal January) but my mind was set on the beautiful landscape around her house and neighborhood filling up with mounting snow and being in that spirit, I hunkered down, started watching some neat movies I had been wanting to see for quite a while, prepared a wonderful stew for the weekend but also, went up in the mountains to eat a wonderful Swiss cheese fondue!!! That’s what happens when your family relationships extends all the way to “out there” and you are “here” wanting to be “there” with them!!! Fun fun fun! And probably 3 pounds heavier on the outcome!!! Oh well….

  26. Here in wild, wonderful WV’s state capital we got an all time record 18.6 inches. I have to agree about the quiet. I live right by the interstate and with the snow it was very, very quiet. Quite a change and one I enjoyed.
    My family has also grilled in the winter – although it has been a while. Once neighbors called the fire department because of the smoke. LOL!!!

  27. More than ’79 and ’96. We’re happy. Dogs didn’t like it on Saturday, but had fun playing Sunday and Monday. Dh and DD didn’t work as their places were closed, but went in today. I kept my dentist appt and went home. Main roads in Philly are fine, but side streets still need plowing.

  28. Thank you to all of you for your snow reports, good reading. We had our niece and her family coming to visit us for the weekend. We live on the Washington State Pacific Ocean and they come from the other side of the Cascade Mountain range which includes Mt Rainier. The snow had stopped pretty much up in the mountains and on their side, but avalanche was the problem. So the whole family sat in their 4Wd SUV all day Friday, while WsDot kept the pass closed for concerns over avalanche. Finally, when the potential open time was extended another hour at the end of the day, their bladders and stomachs had enough and they turned around at State patrols insistence and returned home 🙁 Saturday was beautiful, and we were all sad at missing our weekend together, so we met in Seattle (about half-way) to spend some quality time together and the Pass remained open, thank goodness! However, my nephew lives in DC and I saw pictures he took of the snow there! Holy cow, my sympathy to all who were caught unprepared and my kudos to those of you who know how to do it!

  29. Thanks for sharing your amazing photos! Do I dare comment that I was hiking in 50 degree temps this morning in Phoenix? I grew up in Colorado and remember how being snowed in is, and how ‘loud’ the quiet can be. Glad you’re all safe and hang in there!

  30. Lovely pictures – thank you for sharing! On some of the mountain roads, they plow one lane with ‘turnouts’ so one car can back up into it to let the other by. During our St. Pat’s blizzard, about a dozen years ago, I thought I was completely stocked and ready….except for parakeet seed. Luckily for Petie, he was happy to try all kinds of new food and I was able to stretch his seed until we dug out five days later. It’s always something. Hope Laura and family aren’t packing to go back to NC after this!

  31. It’s days like this and yesterday or Saturday and hearing about the earthquake in Alaska that make me glad I live in the center of the country this winter. We still have the freezing cold but that’s it.

  32. Loved your narrative of snowzilla…to me it sounds like a beautiful alien world. Down here in the deep south of Louisiana we got all the way down to 38degrees. Then it was time for the fireplace, vegetable beef soup, and an in death book. Y’all stay warm up there…we are gearing up for Mardi Gras.
    Melissa in Baton Rouge, LA
    PS Midnight Bayou was always one of my favorites.

  33. WOW – Nora from a wet soggy and mild Dorset England that was a great start to the day – I love your catch ups. Must admit to not wanting the snow though as in England we are not ever ready for the stuff and it gets silly. Keep warm and safe everyone. MC

  34. We live in the Keweenaw Peninsula, in Michigan. We get about 300 or more inches of snow a year. Before that storm hit you folks, it hit us. 4 feet from 6pm Friday until 6pm Sunday. On top of a footalready on the ground. No big deal… Didn’t even slow us down. Another 18 inches since then. And it’s snowing again. .. Another foot expected today. Eh… Snow..

  35. “How do you handle meeting another car with only one cleared lane and three feet of snow on the rest? ” The way we did in 1977 & 1978 blizzards on the back roads of the county; someone backs up until you find a lane you can back into & let the other go on by. I got very, very good at backing up way back then!

    I’m about a half hour NW of Cincinnati & we didn’t see a single flake of snow as the storm shifted further south than expected. Just a bit of fun with wind drifting the previous accumulations across the roads, esp. when driving at night.

    Beautiful country where you are, Nora & I love the dragon in front of the Jeep’s plow. However, I dearly love my breezeway; a few sheltered steps across from the kitchen to the garage, and the broom usually can handle the snow drifts in there. I admit; I’m enough of a wuss that I’d want the carports converted to garages & tunnels built from house to garage. Of course, with 30+ inches of snow, we’d then have to get out & take the snow load off the tunnel roofs. If it’s not one thing in home ownership, it’s something else.

  36. Okay, don’t hate me. Live in Pensacola, Florida, and only had a couple days of below 30 degrees. In shorts and a t-shirt today. I lived in Maryland between the age of 1-7 years and that was enough snow for me. Loved it when the military moved my parents south. I like looking at your pictures but have never missed the snow.

  37. Beautiful! We only got 18-20″ here in southwest Virginia…but that was enough. Lived through the 3′ blizzard in ’96 with no power or water for 4 days, cooked on the woodstove and melted snow for the toilets, had bottled water fit drinking. I do not know how our ancestors survived – it was not fun!

    We finally finished up Justified (loved it!) So now I know Blacklist might be a good choice for our next winter movie-thon. 🙂

    Only a couple more months until the crocus pop up, Nora!

    1. A friend has snowdrops up already! Spring is coming, just takes more patience than I have some days!

  38. Love the pictures. Here in Bradford County in Northeast PA we had no snow which phew not missing. My heart swelled when you said Parker the dog was barking first because I am re-reading the Bride’s Quartet and also the fictional Parker dog in The Garden Trilogy!!

  39. I wish we go snow days like this here in Australia. Its like a dream! Just so beautiful and magical! The stuff I only read about 🙂

  40. We got a bit more than 31 inches here in good old Staten Island New York. Was sure beautiful. I love snow so I don’t complain when it’s like this. I thankfully have a wonderful neighbor who uses my snowblower and clears my driveway and sidewalk and then most of the neighbors too. We help each other out. My Molly dog was happy to have a place to frolic too. The birds we so grateful for the seed I put out. Weather has been mild the last few days so it’s melting. Thanks for giving us all such a beautiful visual.

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