Tuesday, January 12, 2010

This says it all....

A very accurate description of January so far! The boys have had 2 snow days - last Friday & Monday - due to the icy roads. Even at Mama's house in FL it's been cold. Her heat isn't working right so it's cold inside, too. And they have had sleet & snow in Florida, too. Not good! I noticed there is still quite a bit of ice & snow around in the shady areas. There is an old saying in Georgia 'if snow stays on the ground more than 3 days, we'll get some more snow before winter is over'. It snowed 6 days ago. Hmmm ~ we'll watch and see, and put that theory to test.

So what's all the hub-bub about global warming???? Al Gore, where are you? We could use a little warmth about now!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Snow! January 2010

Wahoo! It started snowing yesterday. As usual, this created major panic, mayhem, and general chaos is Georgia. Lots of folks race to the grocery store for milk & bread. Personally, I think TP & popcorn would be more essential & useful, but that's just my personal opinion! hahaha We don't get snow often enough to learn how to live with it. So, to us it's fun, it's pretty, and it's a reason to stay home & play! The boys had a snow day off from school ~ which pleased them greatly to say the least. Blake ran outside last night & took some pictures. He even turned our Christmas lights back on just to see how it looked in the snow. But it's also a hazard....the tv news is showing lots of video of cars sliding on the ice and crashing into each other. Just up the way from our back gate 2 cars mixed it up a few minutes ago! So when it snows - we'll just stay home and play ...and I made some bread. (Yum!) Sounds like a good way to spend a cold winter day!

Cloudland Canyon Hike

Last Saturday we decided to start the New Year off with a nice hike. Cloudland Canyon was calling our name, so off we went. Road Trip! It was REALLY REALLY Cold. The temp. never got out of the teens, and the wild chill was awful. Standing on the edge of the canyon at the point was really a challenge! We look happy in the above picture...but we're shivering like crazy. We didn't stay long at the overlook/point.

So off we went - into the canyon, on the waterfall trail. This is where it got interesting. Blake & I had made this hike almost exactly 25 years ago, in Jan 1985, the winter before we married. I remembered the canyon trail & walls being icy and beautiful. That's what we wanted to show the boys...the ice! The trail was much improved in the last 25 years...because I vividly remember slipping on the ice & almost sliding underneath the railing into the canyon! Now there's boardwalks & better rails in the places that need it. The wall of icicles was so cool. The boys couldn't get enough of playing with the ice.

Eventually, we convinced the boys to keep hiking down the trail towards the falls. They were equally impressed with the ice around the falls. The spray from the falls creates winter ice sculptures all over. It's a 'box canyon'...so the ice is almost surrounding you, with the falls at the end. It was really pretty! The wind wasn't bad down there, but you still had to stay bundled up. Somewhere, Blake & I have a picture of us taken in this exact same spot....25 years ago.

This is how Blake spent most of the day.

More pictures....

The hardest part of a hike for me is going out of the canyon. I'm built like a dashound ...wee, short little legs! So steep climbs and lots of steps just wear me out. I've learned to just go at my own pace - Lord knows I'm not exactly in tip-top shape - and just keep walking, NOT try to walk at the same pace as other long-legged folks. Everyone else goes on ahead of me. Occasionally they wait for me, but most of the time they go on. Riley doesn't mind going at my pace...he often stays with me. It looks like he's saying "are you gonna make it, Mama? Do I need to run for help????"

Could my face be any more red from the cold!

But I finally made it..... but I'm always the Last Hiker Out.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Here Comes 2010!

Happy New Year!

Here's some pictures of our New Years celebrations....

I attempted to make some homemade pretzels for us to snack on. While the dough itsn't hard to make, it was hard to get them pretzel bites all the same size. You have to boil the pretzel bites before baking them...kinda weird and a hassle if you ask me. But I followed all the directions...and this was the result. A tasty treat...weird looking, but yummy topped with melted butter.

We had loads of great food. Pam made a huge, tasty brisket in her jacuzzi sized slow cooker. Blake made some artichoke dip, pico de gallo, and guacamole dip...all recipes from his new Pioneer Woman cookbook. Wahoo ~ PW Rocks! (Sorry I didn't get any pictures of all that...I was busy w/ the pretzel making stuff.)

Our New Years tradition of hanging around the fire like a much of homeless people in the cold carries on. It was a cool, foggy evening. The wind didn't blow the smoke into our faces, so it was actually quite pleasant around the fire.

Lots of family & friends around always makes for a good time - the laughter & nonsense were flowing quite um, liberally!?! Rusty & Blake up to their usual brotherly antics....as well as dear Bea. (We're so glad Bea & the family always drive out & join the fun!)

Fireworks always adds a smokey but fun element to the evening.

Alex & Cole have been thoroughly 'indoctrinated' into their pyromaniac roots by their dads.
They have one really weird 'firework' called a 'Snake'...you light the little black coin looking thingy & it grows into a long black snake thingy that looks like something unpleasant the cat left for you.

I love taking pictures of the kids playing with sparklers.
Cole & Alex had a great time.

But by the end of the evening, the kids (and I!) were pretty tired. We slept pretty late this morning! I think Cole looks like a mummy in a snuggy!

Tomorrow we're planning to drive up to Cloudland Canyon for some hiking. With the cold, wet weather we're hoping the waterfalls will have some pretty icicles. The next blog post will hopefully have pictures of our day there.

Well, 2010 is officially here. May it bring love, laughter & Joy to us all. May the blessings be plentiful beyond our wildest dreams, and may the Lord's presence in our lives allow us to reach beyond our boundries and let His Light shine in all we do.