Baby, It’s Cold Outside!

It’s COLD. Practically everywhere.

And while cold — and the misery it imparts — is relative, you know it’s cold when the weather folks start talking about a Polar Vortex and advising viewers to protect pets, pipes, and tender vegetation.

Walking the Sheltie on a frigid night is difficult enough, without his spooking over the sight of “vegetation” wrapped in sheets and tied with string!

Last night, it dropped to 19 degrees and today, our high is not supposed to be as “warm” as the normal low of 42 degrees.

I know some of you are struggling with below zero temps, blowing and drifting snow, and school closures.

We’ve got our own brand of craziness — Black Ice — caused, in part, when neighbors forget to turn off their sprinkler systems and freeze the sidewalks and lawns.

Like so:

Icicles hang from shrubs

Icicles hang from shrubs

And this:

Frozen vegetation

Frozen vegetation

And this:

Icicles on fronds

Icicles on fronds

Yes, the sun is shining. No, I’m NOT shoveling. For that, I’m grateful. And there’s a promise that things will warm up a lot by the weekend.

So I’m hoping I’ll get to see more things like this:

Paperwhites, an early harbinger of Spring

Paperwhites, an early harbinger of Spring

Pansies sprouting up around trees

Pansies sprouting up around trees

This immense bird looking for its breakfast

This immense bird looking for its breakfast

Don't know what this is, but isn't it pretty?

Don’t know what this is, but isn’t it pretty?

Might this be a lemon tree, or are these oranges or grapefruit??

Might this be a lemon tree, or are these oranges or grapefruit??

Stay warm out there, my friends!

25 thoughts on “Baby, It’s Cold Outside!

  1. Oh, my gosh! Those are Myer lemons and why in the world didn’t the people take them from the tree? Freezing citrus ruins it! I just found some at the farmer’s market before our freeze arrived, and brought home three dozen. Now, I have six pints of lemon juice to freeze. Myer lemons are a cross betwen oranges and lemons, and they’re named after the guy who “invented” them. The juice is great.

    And – are you near any kind of water? That big bird surely does look like an osprey, but they’re fish eaters.

    I suspect the bush with the red berries may be Nandina, also called Heavenly Bamboo, even though it isn’t a bamboo (go figure).

    As for the “polar vortex”, in my humble opinion, it’s just the latest phrase to be used by people trying to scare us to death. Yes, it’s cold. Yes, many people are having a hard time with it. Even down here, I’ve been having to thaw ice in the bird baths and water bowls and crack the ice that keeps developing. But it isn’t the end of the world, and spring will come. After all, this has happened before!

    I can’t believe you happened to include so many things I recognize today. I’m not really all that good at identifying things, but it was fun to see some familiar sights!

    • Linda, I just *knew* somebody would recognize some of this stuff, and I’m glad you did! Myer lemons, huh? Obviously, I’ve never heard of them. No, the tree wasn’t covered; in fact, it crossed my mind that it should have been, but these folks hadn’t bothered to cover anything. Guess they’re unconcerned, and what a shame, since citrus juices are so healthy!
      As for the bird, for sure it wasn’t a heron. Its wingspan, once it took flight, looked to be every bit as extensive as mine, and I’m nearly 5’6″. I was kind of surprised that it didn’t break the branch of that tree! And yes, we’re right on the water, so I’m certain whatever his type, he was looking for fish.
      I haven’t heard of Nandina, but that very well could be it. Its stems rather resemble bamboo. Sad that I know so little about the flora and fauna here, but when you only visit a place, you don’t get versed in the lingo.
      Yes, the term “polar vortex” sounds frightening. I imagine stuff like that gives The Weather Channel something to talk about — like their new thing of naming winter storms. Really!

  2. It was 14 here this morning….I thought that was cold, but it is nothing compared to what some of my friends and relatives experienced. I am so not a fan of cold weather!

  3. “It’s COLD. Practically everywhere.”

    Yes, it sure is, Debbie! Yesterday was 15 degrees, today it dropped to 4! In fact, it’s so cold that I couldn’t even open one of my windows because it was frozen shut.

    I spoke to my brother last night (in Florida) and even he said that they were getting temps. in the 40’s, which is VERY cold for Florida.

    And looking at the photos you shared, they reminded me of a big freeze we had while I was still living in Florida, which destroyed the orange crops.

    I was looking at the forecast for the end of the week into next, and our temps will be going back up to the high 40’s and 50’s.

    Stay warm, my friend!

    • Well, at least there’s a warm-up in sight, huh, Ron? Your window was frozen shut?? That’s a new one! But why were you trying to get fresh air when it was so COLD?!?

      You know, it’s odd, but 40 must feel awfully cold to Floridians. For sure, 19 is miserable here. And having to worry about pipes bursting is NO FUN at all! But on the bright side, they tell us this is the last of the miserably cold temps, so maybe we can thaw out.

      Bundle up, Ron, and here’s hoping the sun will return soon!

    • I’m trying to keep the Sheltie near me — he’s got a warm and furry body, better than any blanket. The only problem is, he gets so hot in his fur-suit that he’d prefer lying on the cold tile floor, ha!

  4. I hate black ice. It is worse than snow in my experience! At least with snow you can see it and know it is there! The pictures are pretty and I am living through your lovely view. Our view is snowy and cold although not nearly as cold as it was yesterday, thank goodness. Stay warm!!!

    • Black ice *is* frightening. I talked with a woman just this morning who told me she’d fallen on it and, if not for her neighbor, might have been lying outside alone for quite some time. This morning, we had the power flicker on and off several times, and that was especially scary. I can probably put on enough clothes to compensate, but I worry about Mama. Glad you’re seeing a little warming trend!

  5. Years ago I was waiting to catch a bus near a spot of black ice, I was dressed for work and wearing a full length mink coat (years ago)after seeing someone fall, I tried to warn others while waiting–most people were in the process of “saying not to today” as they stepped and landed on their butt, one poor guy reached into his pocket for a buck before he hit the grand and I retrieved the dollar for him. It made me very aware of how we often go through life like robots rarely looking up or listening and since no one was hurt (beyond pride) it was pretty funny.
    It is cold. If this had happened last week when I had a house full of campers it would have been impossible hard since no one can go out for more than 30 seconds. This week is we have fewer campers, and I’m so grateful. I’m also grateful the trend is upward over the next few days.
    Why would anyone be watering? And I agree with Suzicate bring the fruit inside. Our high-low was 15 below–47 with windchill.

    • A full length mink coat? I’m speechless. Something about that mental picture, and knowing you’re now a professional pet spoiler, doesn’t quite gel. But I like it, ha!

      Falling on ice is just about the worst. I remember slipping on ice several years ago at the post office. Funny, but the first thing I did was look around to see if anybody I knew had seen me! Why do we coddle our pride at the expense of physical injury?

      Glad to hear you, too, are going to see a warming. Can’t come soon enough for me — I’ve so had it with winter weather.

  6. Everyone in every part of this country has a “normal” when it comes to the weather. I think we’re all way beyond our normals. I’m hanging on to the hope that we’ll climb back out of these depths by the weekend. Stay warm, my friend!

    • Terri, you’re a brave soul to put up with such brutal weather. I’d much prefer being able to get outside, but that’s pretty impossible in such cold. I know you have moderate temps during the summers (which must be a blessing), but still. And after seeing SNOW as late as May, you’d have thought you’d catch a break this year. Guess that wasn’t to be — stay warm!

  7. Pingback: Freeze! Escaped Convict Surrenders In The Cold | Weird News Daily

    • Fifty-five sounds mighty warm to me, Monica — it got down to about 20 last night, and that’s considered a “hard freeze.” And every time I watch the weather on TV, they’re touting the warmth in California and Arizona. Perhaps you’d be kind enough to share a few degrees with the rest of us??!

  8. Yep, it’s cold all right! I won’t complain because our temperatures have stayed on the positive side of zero 🙂 For some reason, I thought you lived in the Midwest, so I was surprised to see the lemon tree and what looks to be a sago palm. (We had a beautiful sago palm in our yard when we lived in Phoenix.) Maybe if I traveled the country more, I’d know what grew in each of the regions!

    I hope the plants survive and no pipes freeze for you. We’ve got ours insulated so I’m crossing my fingers we have an uneventful winter.

    • You’re not wrong, Janna. I do live in the Midwest (Illinois, to be exact), but we traveled to the Mississippi Gulf Coast over the holidays and I couldn’t resist including some of the pretty plants I took pictures of. I’m right there with you — I wish I knew more about them (their names, for starters!). I’m lucky some of my readers like Linda ^ can fill in the gaps!

    • Poor Kim, I truly feel for you. I can’t even begin to imagine what 55 degrees below 0 feels like. Today got up to 70 degrees, with lots of sun. That’s MUCH MORE to my liking! I don’t see any need to shovel snow — now when hurricane season begins, you just watch how fast I high-tail it back to Illinois, ha!

  9. I figured you couldn’t be in Illinois, surely no one there would leave on a sprinkler system in January. ha While I was at my sister’s, her kitchen sink pipe froze and guess what the plumber told her. “Warm it up with a hair dryer.” No kidding…and it worked too.

    • Using a hair dryer to warm pipes is a new one for me, Pat — whatever works, I guess. Thanks for the tip! One hopes one never has to face that problem, but living in the Midwest, one never knows.

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