Here we go…a second month of 2013 in the books…
I flew out of Green Bay on the morning of February 1st – on my way to the airport I drove by Lambeau Field. As the temp registered “-1” there was a long line of fans that were waiting to snatch up free tickets for Donald Driver’s retirement announcement the following week.
Rebecca finished up her 5th season as a swim coach. She sent me this picture from when the school won the county swim meet for the 13th straight year. As the teams were at their state meet, I was able to follow their progress through app – a fun way to be connected to her even from so far away.
As the big blizzard struck the northeast, we only got a small taste of it. A few inches of snow fell overnite on Friday & by the time I woke up on Saturday, the maintenance crew at my apt. complex had already cleared the parking lots and sidewalks. Later that afternoon as I walked around the complex, my new snow boots were definitely overkill but at least I had a chance to break them in.
This Valentine cutie…my littlest girl in Texas ready for her preschool party. On Valentine’s evening, it was fun to FaceTime with the girls in Texas as well as the kids in Wisconsin.
I made it to the movies twice – both were excellent – and each movie yielded a dishcloth.
I ended the month starting The Whole 30 which means I’m spending some fun time in the kitchen making new things – among them, my first time making homemade mayo. I’ll be sharing more about this adventure in my next post.
In my ongoing quest to be capturing life as it is happening, I’m once again restarting the “month in pictures” as a part of blogging. Looking back on January, I didn’t take nearly as many pictures with the phones; however, here are a few highlights:
My page-a-day calendar at my desk this year is beaches – early in January, a page combined one of my favorite vacation spots (Bermuda) with one of my favorite Shakespeare plays (Much Ado About Nothing) – this page is now on my bulletin board.
Most of January I was home: it was great fun to host friends for a long weekend. Being home also meant quite a bit of cooking – one highlight was Portobello & Poblano Fajitas, I’ll definitely be making these again. There hasn’t been much snow here this winter – but one Friday night we got a couple of inches of the dry stuff that is sparkle snow – of course by the next afternoon it was mostly a memory.
The last week of the month meant a return to WI – the lack of snow in PA was made up for by more than a foot of snow falling the week that I was there. While there was lots of snow, there was also a lot of fun time with my dear friends that made it seem like I wasn’t on the road that week.
For being the shortest month (even with an extra day this year), February was filled with quite a bit of fun. A highlight was having my sister come visit, up north, for several days – a separate post is on the horizon for that. In the meantime, here is February 2012 as captured with the smartphone camera…
What made up February? A bit of knitting…knit valentines for loved ones; a birthday gift knit came off the needles (a month before the gifting) & was blocked on the hotel floor; the Snow Moon was beautiful over the bay – the shots are from 2 different nights; the first stop once Rebecca arrived in WI was a tour of Lambeau Field; Rebecca & I also spent a few minutes along the shore in a local park; stumbling upon Meyer lemons in W-mart & having to pick them up – one sat on my desk for the week & brought many a smile; on Leap Day, winter “finally” arrived – about 9″ when it was all over.
Another year has started without my joining a “Project 365” (or 366 this year) group to encourage me to be taking a picture a day. I have always enjoyed taking pictures and want to “do more” with my photography; however, for the time being that isn’t on the agenda. My “fancy” camera sits at home – maybe still in recovery mode for all the pictures captured in Italy over the summer? My point & shoot is in my work backpack or at the hotel (I’m not carrying a purse these days). My smartphone is always with me & so, for now that is the camera that captures my moments. This year, I aim for a monthly recap of captured moments here on the blog.
Without further ado…JANUARY 2012.
The view from my smartphone
So what did January hold? This month, the new weekly planner contains mostly Marinette moments – I was only home for one weekend. While north: a local cafe provides a great weekend hangout – so my new weekend routine up here includes time in their back room with some combination of good coffee, soup, friends, knitting, reading; a rather mild winter weather month – although one morning the car read -10 (!) on the drive to the office; a serendipity in the local cafe led to attending the Newsboys concert up here on a Saturday night – I have been a fan for 20+ years and enjoyed this group and also became a fan of 2 of their opening acts – music from the 3 bands is the soundtrack to my time at the gym; a paperwhite kit that I picked up in December managed to grow and bloom in my office – while the window wall may be chilly some days at least it provides beautiful sunshine; a snowy Saturday morning drive; a bit of evening knitting at the hotel; a surprise care package containing Mom’s fragile sugar cookies (unbroken!) meant cookies for breakfast one morning.
This is my third winter in northern Wisconsin while on this project. In that time, I have seen all sorts of winter weather: some precarious drives north on snow covered highways; some near blizzard snowfalls; some slushy snow days; some icy days; some no snow days and everything in between. On Saturday morning, I awoke to the best type of snow: picturesque, weekend snow. Overnight, a few inches fell – just enough to frost everything in a white that seemed to glisten in the morning sun. First thing Saturday, I had a “quick” errand to go to a favorite pottery studio about 45 miles north of here – along the shore in the UP. After clearing the snow off the rental, I was ready to go with coffee in my travel mug & sunglasses on to minimize the sun glare.
The drive north was lovely – M-35 was dry and there wasn’t much traffic on the road. The sky was a brilliant blue, the sun was shining brightly & the snow was still white. The trees along the route were frosted and tipped in a pure white – every so often, a breeze would shake some snow from the branches. After a busy week in the office, it was nice to step away from the hustle & bustle and just take in the beauty of a winter morning. With the start of a new year, it is natural to resolve to do things differently – this drive was a great opportunity to look back on the month and take stock of how I’ve been doing with the changes I’ve been wanting to make in the new year. A good friend has property along the route of this drive. At some point on my drive, I thought “camera and snowshoes” – this snowy morning seemed like it would be perfect for exploring the property with camera in hand – zooming in on snowflakes with a macro setting, zooming out to a bank of trees or swath of grasses frosted in the light snow. Alas, no camera or snowshoes on the agenda for the day. (And never mind that I’ve never been snowshoeing – it just seemed like the thing to do.)
After an hour in the car, I came to the sign for “Rocky Shores Pottery” and turned from the dry road onto the snow covered driveway – my tires breaking through the white canvas. Shirley, the potter, was in her studio and we chatted as I picked out a few pieces of pottery for friends. After just a few minutes, I was back in the car & retracing my tire tracks on the snow covered driveway to get back to the road. I waited for some southbound trucks to zoom by and then pulled out onto the road back.
Along the way home, I pulled into a park along the shore. Again, my tire tracks broke the snow. A swing set was snow covered – a reminder of warmer days past and warmer days to come. While I didn’t have my camera with me, I did have the camera on my phone – so I stepped out of the car and each step of my boots crunched through the snow as I stopped to take a few pictures. The water along the shoreline has frozen over but in the distance you could see the sun dancing on open water.
By the time I got back to the hotel, much of the snow had disappeared. Before long, I was back in the car with a friend to spend the day shopping. But for those few hours on a Saturday morning, the stillness of a snowy route provided a tranquil respite from the busyness of the everyday.