Tuesday, February 1, 2022

January-It’s All About the Weather

January 1-31, 2022                                                         Most Recent Posts:
Charlottesville Virginia               December 2021 And Happy 2022 Hopefully
                                                                    November 2021 – Still in Virginia

I do so little these days that I can put an entire month of good, bad, happy, sad news in one post. 

20211227_133900The first three days of the month I was able to walk through the neighborhoods and enjoy unicorns and chickens in local yards.  Each brightened my day considerably. 

I imagine it is much easier to keep chickens in town than it was for us in the country where all manner of creatures including foxes and snakes managed to make their way through the fences and somehow into the wooden chicken house we thought we had critter proofed.

Still for many years, I took several dozen eggs a week into work to sell to buyers eager for free range organic eggs.


Then came the first of the snowS.


The first one was January 3rd to start the New Year with troubles for nearly everyone.  5 inches and downed power lines.

Because the woodstoves have not been used in over ten years, I am sure their seals are no longer adequate and need to be replaced. The chimneys would also need to be cleaned as well and wood would have to be procured from some where since my woodsman can no longer provide it. The farm road would be 3/4 of a mile of impassible snow.  And of course power outages are very likely for a house at the end of the power line that goes over a mountain and miles to the next occupied house on its line. Don’t get me started on why the farm is not on the line with the folks at the end of the lane.

IMG_0187For these reasons, though I would much rather have spent a snow storm at the Farm, and have such very fond memories of doing so in the past, I reluctantly find myself in Charlottesville overlooking Winnona.

IMG_0192It turned out to be a wise choice as the power was out at the farm for nearly a week which without wood stoves would have meant no heat, no stove for cooking, as well as well as no water (of course I could have filled the bathtub as we used to) and  no refrigerator.   When the 3 of us were there for years, snow was a cause for celebration as we had everything we needed anyway but now, alone, it seemed not wise.

All of these pictures are taken “in town” where many many people lost their power for 5 days or more but where those on this street were very lucky not to.  In fact, except for us, everyone I know in Charlottesville and its surroundings lost their power for days.

Judging from the pile of snow on the table, maybe it was a lot more than 5”

These 3 pictures were taken while it was snowing. You can see it coming down best in the 3rd one.



Not sure who made the tracks in the snow. It wasn’t anyone from the city clearing the streets but whoever it was made sledding more difficult.


What ARE Ruby, Winnona and I doing here?


On the left, Weather.com reminds me of what I’d be having were it not for the vandals-high 74 low 49; while on the right is what’s actually happening in my world high 39 low 16.

Jan 4 7 19Jan 4 7 19am

I am getting by with help from my friends like Mary who came up to help shovel my walk and Pam who knitted me a great warm hat and my wonderful daughter who gave me this amazingly warm fleece jacket for Christmas since my supply of winter clothing has diminished or disappeared over the past 11 years.



The second snow happened on the 7th.   Better sledding. 


The 8th would have been David’s 75th birthday and he so loved to play in the snow at the farm.  I suspect I would have been out there, power or no, had he been here. He would have made it possible. I miss him in so very many ways.  This photo is from 4 months before he died, he’s doing one of his favorite things.  In 3 days he will have been gone for 3 years. That seems impossible.  It’s definitely been a rough 3 years.

used in Jan 2022 blog

But I go on.
More snow and I’m getting serious cabin fever so I decide to go out and try to get in 10,000 steps.    The streets have been plowed and  sidewalks under threat from the city have been shoveled.   But the much touted walking/biking path across the railroad tracks and through McIntire Park looks like this.  Apparently the city doesn’t have to follow its own rules.  


20220127_130212Later I can get out for groceries.  Much of the power is back on.  There are parking spots around the mountains of snow.

Between snows, luckily I was able to drive Winnona the 60 miles to the repair shop where she is now in line to get her side windows put in and a few other things done.  I drove her in on the 12th.  She is still in line on the 31st with no indication of when work on her might even begin let alone be completed. 

I was able to locate with the help of a number of other people most notably my friend Jody in Vermont, the roll up driver’s window at a salvage yard.  It was sent to the shop on the 21st and still hasn’t arrived.   I’m trying not to fear the worst since I have no idea where I would find another.

I had some pretty bad overdoers back pain for a long while but I have recovered mostly from the 3 hours of shoveling I did to get everything out and drivable.    It’s just a twinge at this point but is not completely gone.

20220128_181116Perhaps the best thing this month was the book boxes.

It was such a treat and so exciting to get the Book Box Laurie gave me for my birthday,  (See most recent post above),  that  with all this freezing weather and snow, I order myself some of the past boxes that were on sale so they could empty their stock. 

They came all at once in the mail in bright red plastic coverings.  SO exciting.  I will “parcel” them out to myself one at a time.  Notice snow boots on the right. Hmmmmm

So here it is, the end of the month.  More snow, Continuing freezing temperatures.

20220129_075710         HIGH 29 - LOW 15 degrees.


Not quite as much snow as the earlier ones, but poor Ruby, neither she nor I are used to this.


Screenshot (1)Twice during the month I have made new reservations in the Florida State Parks for 11 months to the date despite the fact that I am still cancelling the ones I made for this year.  The new system is – If you can believe it – MORE difficult than Reserve America.  I have made reservations for all of November, all of December and almost half of January thus far but not at the parks I wanted.  I was unable to compete there.  So I’ll start out at Fort Clinch, move to the non Ocean side of Gamble Rogers for the first time ever, to Wekiwa Springs, to Alafia and to Highlands Hammock.   I tried over and over for Anastasia, Ocean Side Gamble Rogers and Oscar Scherer to no avail.  There are just too many folks out there on the road these days and perhaps my mobile hot spot internet connection is not fast enough.  Anyone with better mobile internet ideas please comment.

With the snow and cold weather, I did A LOT of reading this month and waited until I had finished the current book before opening my first book box.

When I took it out of the weather proof red bag it was a sturdy white box.  I’m doing the details step by step because it was so much fun and I want to remember it.

It looked like this when I opened the lid except that this picture was taken after I’d opened the paper so there is a tear by the sticker

This is what I found.

I moved the things around so I could see them.  The book was wrapped also in red tissue paper with a red ribbon and a book mark.  It prolonged the suspense.  The brochure on the top fight told me that with this box the Travelling Reader was taking me to Marlow in Buckinhamshire England.


When I opened things up I found the book was The Marlow Murder Club.  It is definitely my next read.

Here are some close ups of what came with it.


So I’ve got a cup map of Buckinghamshire to drink my sold by a local shop in Buckinhamshire tea and 100% Real Belgian Milk chocolate “drinking chocolate” also from a local shop. I can drink and read and eat Mandarin & Lime drops.   Sadly the great chocolate tin was dented but the chocolate inside unharmed.

About all that reading…   Here’s some of it. You’ll notice Three Women and a Boat which was what started the book boxes.  It was such a great book that Laurie and I read it together in January, 2nd time for me, for our weekly book club.   Feast Your Eyes was the book I had to finish before opening the box with The Marlow Murder Club.

I’d like to add Feast to our book club list as well as The Painted Drum.  They were both terrific and I’m happy to read them again.

I have others I’m currently reading but I’ll include them when they are finished.

Elegy for Eddie

Only When I step on itPersuasionThe Last Bookshop in London


20220128_201727This has been some year to have been trapped for the winter in Virginia.  The RV situation is still up in the air and I’m nervous about the whereabouts of that very hard, nearly impossible to come by window.   But thanks to my friends, my books, and the great fun of the book boxes I’m beginning the new year smiling.

Maybe a haircut should be on the calendar for February. 

Looking forward to hearing your comments on my January.


  1. Weather?

    It's more pleasant in our little corner of Arizona than almost anywhere else in the universe! ;-> Soon it will be warm enough for this Sunshine Gal to get those wheels turning.

    1. Glad to hear from you here. Hope you'll get on the road soon, I know what a balm for the soul it is.

  2. Beautiful in Arizona but very cold at night, in the twenties and low thirties. We have moved to Mesa for a week, after that, Yuma for a week. Then we shall see....

    1. Guess I'd better get some good tips from you before I ever venture a winter in Arizona since after this winter I'm not interested in any low 30's and especially no 20's.

  3. WHAT! YOU FOUND A WINDOW! HOLY COW! THAT IS FANTASTIC AND WONDERFUL! NOW WINNONA CAN BE BACK THE WAY SHE WAS! I AM BEYOND EXCITED FOR YOU!!!!! I am waiting for low tide so I can go scrounging for sea glass. It's 44 degrees here but feels like 37. xxxooo

    1. 44 degrees on the Outer Banks sounds pretty cold to me. It's going to be much warmer here this next week.

  4. It is such a hassle to travel anywhere these days. Must get reservations so far ahead if available at all. The snow had made it difficult to get out our driveway. Luckily we don't need to go out much, so we just hunker down and be happy the power is still on. The book boxes are so cool, like getting a gift in the middle of a snowy winter. Very nice!

    1. I'll bet your driveway is difficult. Does anyone plow it for you so you can get to the grocery. Doesn't sound like you lost power in the recent snowS. Good to hear and yes that's why I ordered the book boxes so I'd have a holidays to look forward to before spring.

  5. I'm sorry to say that it's in the low 70's here pretty much year round. We just got back from a week long trip to Cozumel, Mexico again. I haven't blogged since our last trip in October. I hope as February begins your luck will change! I can't believe it's been 3 years since David passed.

    1. Don't be sorry. Clearly you are in a fantastic weather spot. I can't believe it's been 3 years either. It feels like last year.

  6. I enjoyed this blog post. I got to really see how much more snow you got than we did here in Maryland. The most we've gotten has been 2.5/3 inches, if that. I feel like I'm still waiting for the "one good snow" I always hope for each winter - not sure we'll get it this year. The temps have been very cold. Colder than I remember in winters past. Dad would've loved snow on his birthday. Still odd not to send him a gift or call. Glad to hear about the windows! Still so frustrating not to be in Florida where it's warm. Those books look great. I am reading the collection of Faulkner that Matthew got me several years ago. Love you!

    1. so glad you enjoyed the post. Lucky for me I didn't lose power so the snow hasn't been the problem, it's that it is SO cold all the time. Colder than I remember too. Lucky me to be stuck this winter! Oh boy Faulkner - very interesting but tough. I suspect you'll be at it for some time if it's a collection. Good for you!!

  7. PS - I like your hair..the wave sits nicely. Makes me think of Dad's wavy hair. We always knew when he needed a cut. Mad scientist in the morning 😂

    1. You made me laugh out loud with this comment. Thank you sweetheart! Mad scientist indeed. Wish I had a picture of it.

  8. I agree with Carrie and like your hair as is. But I do not like all that snow and cold. So happy a window was found. It will arrive eventually. Seems all shipping is slow right now. The book box looks like fun.

    1. Book box is great fun Gaelyn and I remind myself that the only reason I could really do it is that my address has been the same for so many months. Usually I move every 2 weeks.

  9. I did sense a symptom of ‘cabin fever’ and/or frustration in the caption “What are Winnona, Ruby, and I doing here?” That also probably summarizes the blog as it’s a report of your day-to-day while you await the opportunity to get the heck back on the road!

    Just think how much more you will REALLY enjoy RVing now.

    Nobody ever said life on the road was easy. But - call me Mr. Empathetic - nobody ever said life at home was easy, either.…… Stop and and think how envious your readers are of your lifestyle.

    Glad things seem to be working out with your Winnedow replacement. I’m hoping the next blog entry will include images of the completion of repairs. (Where IS that window??!!). No tracking number……?

    Hang in there! Enjoy your time off road to read all those books.

    Oh, BTW, just as Carrie mentioned, I, too, like the looks of your wavy doo. Are you still using The Flowbee? I believe that used to be an As-Seen-On-TV item. Have you
    noticed on Amazon that the system is selling for $309??!!

    1. Fantastic comment Jody. This is why I always love to hear from you. So glad you got the pictures to come up without having to click them individually. I had NO idea my flowbee was now so expensive. Hmmmm, is it an antique? I did check the tracking number. It showed it "in route" scheduled to be delivered on the 27th but it was now the 29th.

  10. Love your new hairstyle, shows you are beautiful both inside and out! :c)

    1. Paul you are so sweet. But the haircut isn't new, it's been short for months now. I think I showed it when it was first cut in a previous blog and since you always comment - thank you thank you - I know you've seen it. I hate to think your memory is getting worse than mine. This is the getting too long version of that cut. Oh dear my reply is longer than your comment. LOL!

  11. So somehow I lost something somewhere. How do you have a house in Charlottesville? I know you parked on the street there, but this looks like you have the protection of a real house in town, and sounds that way from your story. Good thing! glad you didn't have to weather all that snow all alone out on the farm. I can't believe it has been 3 years....goes way to fast....and incredibly slow...as if time just stops. Hard stuff, Sherry, but at least at this moment Winona is at least in the shop. I pray that she gets fixed. Sad about all the reservations in Florida being outside your favorites, but a least you found something. Traveling really is getting to be a really hard thing to try to plan. Somehow I also missed out on the book box thing....how did I miss this. Either way, it looks like a ton of fun, and as you said in one of the comments, at least there was something good to come of being in one place for a bit of time. We had some really good snow around Christmas, and some good rains in November and even into December. But now a high pressure system has been sitting over this part of the northwest and we have had no precipitation for almost a month. Not good considering that this is our wet season. The sun did finally come out but for weeks that high pressure kept the fog on the ground and the sunshine high above us, unseen. Ah well. You have encouraged me to finally go write a blog. Sheesh. Take care.

  12. You write such great comments Sue. Thank you. You didn't miss the Box it was in my last post about my birthday. My friend Lori gave me the Box and told me about the service. I was able to get some some of the previous previous boxes because they were on sale. They really are so much fun. Weather is behaving very badly all over the country. It's either too wet or too dry. Unbelievably hot or ridiculously cold. But of course there is no climate problem.

  13. You should try Colaw RV parts in MO, colawrc.com for your driver window. Many RV parts are not unique, but are standard parts used in trucks etc which might help the search

    1. Thanks Don. They are one I contacted with no luck. After months of looking. I found a door with window at Visione in Kentucky if it isn't, as I mentioned, lost in route.

  14. Hope you are ready for this next storm, we have been getting pics from Texas friends of their new deep snow. We fly South on Sunday as our two weeks of Doc and dentist appointments are done. It will be a week in Las Vegas for hikes in Valley of Fire state park and then a week on the beach in Oceanside California and then a flight back to the Cabana. Kathy got us three 3 night trips to inland state parks in Florida so we can learn to use the new to us Sprinter RV we bought. It seems we are making life more complex for now anyway. 19F for a high today at home and I am in my recliner with the room at 70F, reading blog posts.

    1. Good to hear from you Tom. I'm trying to picture uour travels. You are now in Alaska? Going to to Nevada, California, and then back to Florida. Which Florida state parks will you be visiting? Were I there instead of canceling reservations, perhaps we would meet up.

  15. That looks cold! Beautiful, but cold. You made a good decision to stay in town during that snowstorm. I love the book box! What fun to have those treasures to open and savor, especially on wintery days.
    Your photo of David and your reminiscing is so poignant. It's a good reminder for all of us to be fully present and grateful every day. I hope that Winona will soon be repaired and that you can resume the life of travel that you love so much. Take good care, my friend.

  16. The snow would be much more beautiful at the farm and I am very tired of such cold temperatures. But grateful for the introduction to the book boxes which have been a bright light in this long Winter.

  17. Dave and I and Duke are in Georgia as of today! Mistletoe State Park, we are worn out from the trip and have not explored yet but our site is right on the lake, facing the sunset! Reading The Lincoln Highway,I'll let you know what I think!

    1. It's so great to hear from you Lynn and to know that you, Duke and Dave are doing OK in this pandemic stuff. A site facing the lake sounds wonderful. I hope the weather in Georgia is better than in Virginia. Would love to hear your thoughts on any books you are reading. Please Keep in touch.

  18. Just back a couple of days ago from Cancun and Akumal Mexico. Missed the cold snap in Texas during our excursion and happy to be back and not quarantined in Mexico. Enjoyed all the warm weather but will have to say that we do miss the Maryland snow. Something refreshing and new about it. Always hated to go out and mess it up with footprints. Google sends me pictures every day from years past and David was in several of those recently from his trip out here at Thanksgiving 4 years ago. We had so much fun in Big Bend. Sorry for all the troubles you've had with the windows. Hopefully it will be sorted out before the winter is completely gone.

    1. Did the whole family go to Mexico again this year? I'm at 6 months and counting on this vandalism. Very tiring and discouraging. Big Bend was a great time for David. I was listening to Terry Tempest Williams talk about it in her book The Hour of the Land. I really hope to get there. It was on our list. Glad David made it..


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