My family in Northern Virginia are all snowed in with an enormous blizzard. (My mom's had a lot of time to knit!) There's been a flurry of emails back and forth about it, as they are all completely snowed in. In fact, there was a period where some of them didn't even have electricity. I'm relieved to say that everyone's fine (and the electricity's back on) but they seem to be getting a little bored when it comes to shovelling and staying indoors. After 3 feet (90cm) of snowfall in a week, one could get tired of shovelling! Here in Winnipeg, we get our snow just a little at a time, but it never melts in the winter. So, I thought I'd post some photos of what some winter landscapes here are.
This here on the right is my front walk. If you make the photo bigger you can see Harry and Sally's paw prints--we always leave the house from the front door for our walks. A packed snow path is standard in our neighborhood; it mostly provides traction without ice.
I find the elms that line our street beautiful in all seasons so far. They are these majestic and enormous skeletons in the snow. They also can help figure out where the sidewalk is as compared to the street itself!
I met these guys from the city out surveying the street the other day. They had to use pick axes and shovels to find the curbs and sidewalks underneath the snow! I asked them why they didn't just use Google Earth instead, and one of the younger guys smirked. Apparently they looked up the street that way first, before putting on their parkas and coming out to survey the old fashioned way!
The dogs love their walks in all but the coldest weather. They are happy outside without their coats right down to about 0F (about -17C). They do want to come in more quickly when it's -20F (-29C). The difficulty is that Harry gets these yucky ice balls in between the pads of his paws. We've had the hair there trimmed and we keep his nails short, but he's still had a hard time adapting his feet to winter here. We then attempted something we thought we'd never stoop to:
Dog shoes. The professor bought two pairs of the least expensive booties we could find, but at $30 for each dog, they weren't a bargain. Whenever I even opened the package, Sally raced from the room. So, clearly, Sally wasn't about to enjoy this as a fashion accessory. (Sally wouldn't wear a coat until she finally discovered that her short hair wasn't keeping her warm enough otherwise!)
Harry loves to play dress up, so we thought this might work better for him. First I tried putting on one or two booties. He walked around like he was drunk and his paws stuck in molasses. Then, I hoisted him onto my lap. He lolled around like a big furry baby. I put all four booties on him. I let him outside in the yard with Sally.
At first he stood still, completely scared. Then, distracted, he forgot about his paws and took off after Sally, ready for a chase. Within 30 seconds, the booties (all four of them) flew off his feet like in a TV cartoon. Oh well. So much for booties. I had to find them all in the snowbanks and, once dried off, they still looked brand new and were returned to the store.
Not all fashion styles work for all of us. I, for instance, don't wear bikinis. I'm not one for open toed pumps or nail polish. Harry and Sally? Not fans of the dog booties.
Last, but not least--Icelandic seems to be the fiber theme of the day. This is my first woven rug, done out of Icelandic wool. It's about 2 feet by 3 feet. The cotton warp's a nice long one and I'm now at work on rug #2, which will be Icelandic wool as well, done in a twill pattern. So far, they're very cushy--I think they'll feel amazing underfoot. I may make longer runners of 6 feet, too. I am a fan of these very plain solid color designs--they show off natural colors of wool admirably. The next warp will likely be dark and I'll do dark brown rugs.
(Please do drop me a line if you think a fleece rug sounds tempting...I'm thinking of selling these if I can find any takers.)
That's the news from here! Please take time to make snow angels if you're experiencing a bit of the fluffy white stuff...