nuranar: (home improvement)

When it's mowed, even a lawn that's mostly weeds looks pretty good!

And I finally sorted the big pile of rocks that we dug up when planting Marya. The big/medium-sized ones are on the patio, waiting for rain or sprinklers to finish cleaning them off. Then I'll line the flower beds with them. Another day.

nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (Default)
Always fun to see, even though it was barely anything. Maybe .25". But it's well below freezing - mid/low 20s all day, with wind chill another 10-15 degrees lower. So whatever melted on the pavement was likely to re-freeze. Traffic was pretty crazy. Tonight we're heading for a low in the mid-teens.

I spent a very relaxing evening at home with a roaring fire. I love having a gas starter! I'm really lousy at building a fire, but wow, I can keep it going.  I learned from reenacting, specifically at Fort Washita, when the only source of heat was a single fireplace in a large stone room.  (There was that memorable weekend which highs in the teens and lows in the single digits...) It's tricky to keep a fire burning well for three days.  You've got to keep enough wood on it, and if it starts to die down, it needs stirred up and the logs turned so it will burn better. The ashes need to be taken out, too, because eventually they block oxygen.  I enjoy the challenge. :)
nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (Default)
Tomrrow's forecast:

  • Sunday
    Rain and sleet likely between 7am and 1pm, then snow, freezing rain, and sleet. Temperature falling to around 34 by 4pm. North wind 15 to 20 mph, with gusts as high as 25 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. Little or no ice accumulation expected. New snow and sleet accumulation of less than a half inch possible.
  • Sunday Night
    Snow, freezing rain, and sleet before 7pm. Low around 27. North wind 5 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 20 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. Little or no ice accumulation expected. New snow and sleet accumulation of less than a half inch possible.

    It seems the first week of February is a good time for ice or snow or fun things like that. Three years ago, we had a major ice storm, three days that didn't get above 23°F, and then snow. That was the week I couldn't go in to work for four days. And that weekend was the Super Bowl here, in Arlington. :p 

    In comparison, December's storm definitely topped 2011's; but that's a result of the sheer quantity of ice. There was less in 2011, but the temperature stayed so low it just never melted, and it didn't lose its grit.  But this December we got way more, especially on my side of town. And while temperatures did warm up after the first day, the ice was so much deeper that only the top layer melted - which then re-froze every night into a smooth sheet. I've never seen ice that thick and slippery. (And it became cobblestone ice on the roads.)

    These winter storms have a habit of adding to my wardrobe. After 2011 I got nice insulated winter boots. Now I'm adding ice cleats to my wishlist! :D

    Did I mention that Friday's high was 78°F? It was very pleasant. :)
  • nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (firelight)
    After the Cobblestone Ice Incident of mid-December, and then some rain a couple of weeks later, we've had scarcely a drop of precipitation. To be precise, 0.33" total since 22 December.  Result 1: Lots of dead, dry grass about, and often high winds.  Result 2: Fire. 

    Several times in the last couple of weeks I've smelled smoke. It's a mostly nice smell to me; it reminds me of reenactments and fireplace fires (although slightly different), and can be hard to distinguish from a true barbeque. Actually, that's the literal truth. Mesquite and/or hickory are the preferred woods for barbequing. But mesquite grows wild all over Texas. It's notorious for taking over former or hardly-grazed rangeland.

    I can be reasonably certain that when I've been smelling it for 7+ hours, in a neighborhood pretty far from any barbeque restaurant, there's a fire burning somewhere.
    nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (Default)

    The temperature has risen slightly as the wind has shifted to the south/southwest, and now the sun is coming out. So the ice is melting. We'll see if enough gets cleared off the roads to make them reliably navigable - I've seen one car on my street, which is a hill, spin its wheels just an hour ago.

    Dad just told me to turn on the Philadelphia Eagles football game right now on Fox Sports. Absolute blizzard in Philly! It's our storm!  Crazy - the snow is so heavy it's hard to see, and they're having to clear the yard line markers and numbers regularly. Even if you're not a football fan, you ought to tune in just to see the crazy.

    nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (Default)

    The sleet picked up about half an hour after last night's pictures. It was really coming down! It kept up steadily until well after dawn, doubling or tripling the amount on the ground. I bundled up and wandered around the neighborhood, taking lots of pictures. I really walked a long way; probably about 3 miles.

    Read more... )



    I love the variety of leaf color.
    DSC08718

    The set for all the pictures is here.

    nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (Default)
    The streets are now all white. The temperature hasn't fallen much below 30 yet, so the edges toward the gutters are a bit damp. But there's plenty in the middle of the roads. I think it's mostly sleet, which is good; sleet gives grit and traction that freezing rain doesn't.

    DSC08604

    Read more... )
    nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (gloomy)
    I'm being good and doing my budget. At least I'm watching Tommy & Tuppence at the same time.  And it has rained! All day and night! For once, the sun is not shining, and it is not over 90 degrees.
    nuranar: (reading)
    1.  Cold front! The day started at 63 or something silly like that, but by noon the wind had changed and the temperature fell slowly but steadily.  It's so much more festive when the weather is chilly!
    2.  I had a friend over for the afternoon, so I was able to do some little housekeeping things before she arrived, with the Cowboys game on.  Football is such a relaxing thing to have on.
    3.  Having my friend over!  We talked a lot, especially about food, and made a few things, and I sewed while she looked at catalogs and watched some Remington Steele.  We had some of my potato/leek soup for lunch, with English muffins because I ran out of edible rolls. And then I made the gingerbread cake, and then I fried a little of the canned corned beef hash I keep on hand, so we had that for a snack. She liked it, too!
    4.  Christmas party with our adult Sunday School class.  Amazing yummy food (I ate WAY too much), and great fun and laughing and conversation.
    nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (Default)
    Nothing like waking up to a severe thunderstorm. Here's hoping it blows through before I have to walk in to work from the car! :p
    nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (wind)
    And now it's 44°. With 90% humidity and 20-30 mph wind, the wind chill is 35°.  My trench coat is DEFINITELY not enough. Brr!

    Wow!

    8 March 2012 12:48 pm
    nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (winter stormy)
    Remember this?  16°F temperature drop in 1 hour by the clock.  Well, we've just blown through that.




    Yep, that's 21 degrees in 1 hour, from 11 AM to noon.  Yikes!!!

    Not only that, but after a night that barely hit 67°, with gentle south/eastern winds, we've gone to cold north winds gusting above 30 mph and cold blowing rain.  What a yucky day! Naturally, it's my busy day - work, then chiropractor, then dinner, then voice lesson, then choir rehearsal, then practice of two special ensemble pieces (partially via Skype) for the concert tomorrow night. *dies*  At least I dressed [mostly] practically. (I suspect I'll want my real coat instead of the trench...)

    I knew it was supposed to be chilly with rain today, but I honestly did not expect anything this abrupt or extreme. Wow!
    nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (wind)
    ... I think spring has begun.  Without a Greenland high, this has been a joke of a winter. I forecast a brief two-week spring, follow by a beast of a summer scheduled to arrive, oh, by spring break (middle of March).

    One good thing: It'll be our first warm Easter in probably a decade. Christmas is usually gorgeous and clear and mild, even in a harsh winter; Easter is ALWAYS cold and/or wet. One year it snowed!  We don't get white Christmases, oh no, but we can managed white Easters and Thanksgivings.


    And now that I've predicted it, watch winter come up and catch us and all the plants napping. A year ago today we were dealing with the worst ice and snow storm in many decades.
    nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (Chill...)
    9 days ago: Snow on the ground.

    Today: Temperature 80* and climbing.

    Tomorrow: Forecast 87*.

    Surgery day: Severe thunderstorms.

    At least I like SOME kinds of change!
    nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (Chill...)
    9 days ago: Snow on the ground.

    Today: Temperature 80* and climbing.

    Tomorrow: Forecast 87*.

    Surgery day: Severe thunderstorms.

    At least I like SOME kinds of change!
    nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (spring)

    It's not my favorite song from Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, and not a particularly profound line, but it's particularly a propos at the moment.

    A week ago Sunday, February 28, I walked outside between services on the south side of the building and was hit by a blustery wind. And it felt fresh and cool, but it wasn't cold. That was the moment I knew that Spring really has begun. (And we had snow flurries only the week before!)

    All that week it was on the humid side, mostly cloudy and with some rain, but it didn't get uncomfortably cool at night. And when the rain cleared off, it wasn't because of a cold front. It was a strong, straight southerly wind, the wind that characterizes this area from April to October.

    Thursday it was warm enough to be uncomfortable to get in the car that had been sitting outside all day. We had some rain over the weekend and we were back in the upper 40s, but it has not felt cold. There's an indescribable extra chill to winter coolness that this coolness did not have.

    Today? The warmest yet, high at least 74. I wore a linen skirt and a chiffon short-sleeve blouse to work, with a sweater for the walk in early in the morning.  I had to use the air conditioner in the car once I got on the highway.

    I looked out the window today and knew it the year was getting on, because of the angle of the sun shadows. Most of the trees in view were live oaks and the grass was yellow-brown still, so it could have been late summer. But the still-leafless trees in the distance and the bright clarity of the blue sky meant it wasn't that hot.

    Most of the trees are budding, not just Bradford pears. The pecans stay bare the longest, but the post oaks have big fat leaf buds all over. Last Sunday there were live oak leaves underfoot, which means they're dropping to make way for the new leaves.

    Spring here isn't long, and often it's broken up into a couple days at a time when fronts come in and before it gets hot; but it is a season nonetheless, and to be enjoyed to the full in its brevity.

    nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (spring)

    It's not my favorite song from Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, and not a particularly profound line, but it's particularly a propos at the moment.

    A week ago Sunday, February 28, I walked outside between services on the south side of the building and was hit by a blustery wind. And it felt fresh and cool, but it wasn't cold. That was the moment I knew that Spring really has begun. (And we had snow flurries only the week before!)

    All that week it was on the humid side, mostly cloudy and with some rain, but it didn't get uncomfortably cool at night. And when the rain cleared off, it wasn't because of a cold front. It was a strong, straight southerly wind, the wind that characterizes this area from April to October.

    Thursday it was warm enough to be uncomfortable to get in the car that had been sitting outside all day. We had some rain over the weekend and we were back in the upper 40s, but it has not felt cold. There's an indescribable extra chill to winter coolness that this coolness did not have.

    Today? The warmest yet, high at least 74. I wore a linen skirt and a chiffon short-sleeve blouse to work, with a sweater for the walk in early in the morning.  I had to use the air conditioner in the car once I got on the highway.

    I looked out the window today and knew it the year was getting on, because of the angle of the sun shadows. Most of the trees in view were live oaks and the grass was yellow-brown still, so it could have been late summer. But the still-leafless trees in the distance and the bright clarity of the blue sky meant it wasn't that hot.

    Most of the trees are budding, not just Bradford pears. The pecans stay bare the longest, but the post oaks have big fat leaf buds all over. Last Sunday there were live oak leaves underfoot, which means they're dropping to make way for the new leaves.

    Spring here isn't long, and often it's broken up into a couple days at a time when fronts come in and before it gets hot; but it is a season nonetheless, and to be enjoyed to the full in its brevity.

    SNOW

    11 February 2010 04:20 pm
    nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (winter stormy)
    The snow has stopped for the first time in 12+ hours.  Not to worry, though; we're just in a hole in the storm, according to the radar. It should pick up again soon and continue for much of the night.

    UTA finally cancelled classes beginning at 3:00.  Choir rehearsal is cancelled, too.  Free evening!... once I get home.


    The temperature has stayed pretty much at 33 all day.  Byron made it here for his internship interview just fine.  He said there's no ice on the roads yet.  That'll change in a couple hours when the temperatures drop.


    Here, and at home, there was about 4" of snow at 1:00.  There are predictions of 6-8" for storm totals.  The weight of the snow on tree branches is causing power outages, not to mention this collapsed carport/awning.  It's at at an apartment complex less than 10 minutes' walk from my house.



    Outside Jerry World The Mothership Cowboys Stadium in Arlington.


    My mother has lived in Arlington since the mid 1960s.  She's never seen snow like this, not even in the horrible cold of 1983-4.  Needless to say, this blows the Christmas Eve snowfall out of the water.  I just checked, and the records for total February snowfall are:

    1.  13.5" (1978)
    2.  7.5" (1924)
    3. 4.2" (1951)

    I think we'll set a new #3, if not #2.  Just from one storm.  The Valentine's Day snow in 2004 wasn't even on the list.  It's definitely going to be listed on the Significant Snow Events page.


    One last picture, from Plano. (Definitely not the most snow, but very pretty.)

    SNOW

    11 February 2010 04:20 pm
    nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (winter stormy)
    The snow has stopped for the first time in 12+ hours.  Not to worry, though; we're just in a hole in the storm, according to the radar. It should pick up again soon and continue for much of the night.

    UTA finally cancelled classes beginning at 3:00.  Choir rehearsal is cancelled, too.  Free evening!... once I get home.


    The temperature has stayed pretty much at 33 all day.  Byron made it here for his internship interview just fine.  He said there's no ice on the roads yet.  That'll change in a couple hours when the temperatures drop.


    Here, and at home, there was about 4" of snow at 1:00.  There are predictions of 6-8" for storm totals.  The weight of the snow on tree branches is causing power outages, not to mention this collapsed carport/awning.  It's at at an apartment complex less than 10 minutes' walk from my house.



    Outside Jerry World The Mothership Cowboys Stadium in Arlington.


    My mother has lived in Arlington since the mid 1960s.  She's never seen snow like this, not even in the horrible cold of 1983-4.  Needless to say, this blows the Christmas Eve snowfall out of the water.  I just checked, and the records for total February snowfall are:

    1.  13.5" (1978)
    2.  7.5" (1924)
    3. 4.2" (1951)

    I think we'll set a new #3, if not #2.  Just from one storm.  The Valentine's Day snow in 2004 wasn't even on the list.  It's definitely going to be listed on the Significant Snow Events page.


    One last picture, from Plano. (Definitely not the most snow, but very pretty.)
    nuranar: Hortense Bonaparte. La reine Hortense sous une tonnelle à Aix-les-Bains (1813) by Antoine Jean Duclaux. (winter stormy)

    Winter weather is so tricky! There were forecasts for at least two potential winter-precipitation events in January, and they fizzled with a capital F. And this morning at 5 AM, there was a good inch of snow on the grass and cars, where no accumulation had been predicted until the day.  It's such a fine balance of factors for us - moist air, cool air, front coming at the right time of day, &c. - that makes accurate prediction so incredibly hard. (This unpredictability, or volatility, is what gives us our hailstorms and tornados and other fine things as well.)

    Temperatures are hovering right around freezing. The snow is fluffy and wet, unlike the Christmas Eve blizzard which was dry.  This means that Dad and I had a rare commute through snow and slush, without ice.  Truly a novelty, I assure you.  We saw only a couple of stalled cars on the whole 25 miles of freeway.

    Fortunately, or unfortunately, we're nowhere near done with the snow. It's still coming down steadily.  Updated forecasts are for 3-4 inches total even in the metro area. Of course there is more to the north and west.

    Snow is so pretty! Being wet, it's clinging to all the leaves and branches. The Christmas snow was not only dry, so it didn't cling so well, but the blizzard conditions meant wind that kept it from just resting on things.  It's piled up now, though, even on the bare branches of the peach trees next door, and all the live oak leaves. One fellow at work said the junipers lining his driveway were covered in it, all feathery and pretty.

    TCU has canceled classes, but so far UTA hasn't.  If they don't, Dad and I will just leave work early so I can get home, then to school from there.  Byron has an interview here for an internship early this afternoon. I hope either that the roads aren't bad at all, or that they're so bad he has reason not to come! A lot can happen in a 25-mile drive.

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