In the Bleak Midwinter

Hello friends,

Long time, no post.  Life has been a little teensy bit hectic and to be totally honest, I have had zero motivation to write anything.  I can't believe it's been almost two months.

Christmas and New Year's found us traveling out east to visit with family.  Peep did very well in car.  The longest leg of our journey was 10 hours straight.  He was trooper.  We did do a fair bit of night driving so he was asleep.  The worst moment came within an hour of our destination (~1:30am) when he woke up and starting crying inconsolably. After every attempt to figure out what was wrong, he finally just burst out "My tired of driving! Why's Uncle []'s house so far away??"  We feel ya kiddo.

Once there, Peep loved every bit of visiting.

After hearing of the impending Polar Vortex, we decided to come home earlier than planned.  It was a very good thing we did.  It was also a very good thing that we picked up a gallon of milk as we arrived back.  In hindsight we should have picked up more than one, but at least we had one!

The Polar Vortex was epic.  Honestly, I kind of enjoyed it.  After all our hurrying and scurrying about the previous two weeks it was rather delightful to snuggle up and relax knowing that the entire world around us was stopped in its tracks.

- 2 Weeks ago  -
For those of you who don't know, that fire hydrant is extra tall.  There is at least 1 foot of pipe above ground before the hydrant itself.

The Polar Vortex definitely got me thinking about how much our American culture needs to simply chill out sometimes.  (Ok, bad pun...but seriously...) We are constantly on the go.  Even if an individual decides to take a vacation, everything else is still moving at breakneck pace.  We take a day off of work and come back with a stack of projects on the desk, a million emails to be read, phone calls that need to be returned - often we end up doing twice as much work to catch up on that one day that was missed.  On the other hand, it is so easy to spend a day off doing chores and errands.  The day is spent running around from place to place, making phone calls, trying to get the house clean (and it is never clean enough).

Maybe it's just me.  Maybe this is part of the problem of being a working mom (albeit part time). But I'm pretty sure that most of the good ol' US of A is in the same boat.

Other countries have real holidays and have them more often.  You know, days when everything closes down and you spend the time with family and friends, not with your unfinished business. A healthy society needs leisure. Leisure is the basis of culture (thank you, Joseph Pieper.)

A very blue picture of a (still now larger) snowman Peep and his "Datty" built.
But now we'll fast forward to this past week.  A week ago today we attempted to go for a nice Sunday drive to celebrate a baptism.  The route selected for the day trip is one that's very nice in the summer, but not so nice when the fierce wind is blowing snow across the highway to the point of reducing visibility.

We are blessed to be alive.  The car slipped, J lost control.  We nearly hit several other vehicles before spinning off the road and landing in the median ditch.  After sometime, two police cars came, a tow truck was called, and we were pulled out. 

The car needs some repairs (and by some, I mean expensive).   If only money grew on trees...

In the meantime the car is drivable, but we have been told not for highway driving.

And so we have been on pins and needles driving the compromised car on the icy, snowy streets. 

To make matters worse, snow keeps falling.

Yesterday the car got stuck as J was coming home.  Two hours later we got the car out.  I missed my evening activity because of it.

This morning, trying to go to Mass, the car got stuck again.  Four hours later, two neighbors helped J free it, only for it to get stuck again 20 feet later (the neighbors helped again).  It almost got stuck a third time before J got it to its parking space.

I enjoyed the snow at first, but this car business is getting old.  I just want to go to Mass!

- Today -

I have to say though, that I am so thankful that for all the snow the great Permacloud has not been as permanent of a fixture as usual.  There's been much more sun and blue sky this winter.  While that means lower temps, that is fine by me.  I'd rather have 0 degree weather than 23 degree weather (it's really not all that different in my book) if it means I can see the sun and blue sky.