Tuesday, January 12, 2010

From Frost to Snow, Will it Ever Go?

Snow At The Deenery


Let's talk about the weather! It's a very English thing to do isn't it? Mind you, I think it's spread to the rest of the world with all this unusual weather. Jim managed to get out on the Monday before Christmas and, thank goodness, bought supplies and some wood pellets for our boiler. We then couldn't get out for ages.

We tried to go to Galway and had to abort our trip because of the sheets of ice on the main roads. Our pellets were getting low again and the company won't deliver to us because of the state of the roads. So Jim braved it again and it snowed on him. Luckily he managed to get through and buy some more pellets and food and struggled back. Our lane has had a river of ice down it for weeks. It's treacherous.

On Saturday, I decided to go off down the lane and take some photos of the snow. I got half way down and slipped on my bottom. My camera flash now doesn't work! Well, it's Jim's camera actually and he's not best pleased. The snow had covered the ice so I could no longer see where it was. I turned round and headed back home and took some photos around our land.

Oh, did I mention the water has frozen again. It's been a few days now. Erm, also, as a result of the water pressure dropping the boiler no longer works. So I'm sitting in my office with one bar of an electric fire on and my hands are freezing. We are beginning to wonder quite what we have done to offend the 'powers that be'. And to cap it all, we have been without the internet for 2 days, so that's why I haven't been able to post. We had to watch television!

Today we should have been heading off to the UK to visit Jim's children and grandchildren then going up to see Jason, Sam, Jack and Kitty. As it has snowed with intent now, both here and in the UK, we cancelled the trip. We daren't leave the cottage and probably wouldn't be able to get Buster to the kennels anyway. I am supposed to be going to Derbyshire next week to see K, so I hope it's all back to normal by then. Or I shall scream. I stayed in bed until 4pm one day - at least it was warm in there.

Right. Rant over.

I had a laugh on the phone with Noreen, the owner of the kennels. She has no water either, but a neighbour has been delivering some as she needs it for the dogs apart from everything else. When I mentioned our boiler wasn't working she said, 'I may be smelly, but I'm warm!' lol.

I braved the Neighbours

I have been wondering how our neighbours down the road have been managing for food and water. They fell out with us, in spite of my attempts to try and smooth things over, just before Christmas 2008. I have hated the situation and decided to go and see them. We had some peat blocks left over from when Stanley was here, so I took them down to them, as they have a wood burning stove (which we gave them). Sandra seemed pleased to see me and I went in and we had a chat for about 20 minutes. I also saw Pete and he was fine too. I feel better about the situation anyway and if we can just smile and wave as we pass, that will be fine. A good way to start the New Year I thought. They had been without water for a short time too, but friends with 4 x 4s had taken them shopping for food, so basically they're ok.

Arty Stuff

I had a play today with lots of different bits of green material. I cut it into various square and rectangular shapes and bondawebbed it onto a piece of backing. I'm not quite sure what I'm going to do next but it's been fun having a play.

The day I stayed in bed, it snowed hard and Jim went out and took some photos. I'll pop some of them on, or this will be all boring writing! At least the snow looks pretty.

Fennel in the front garden

The contorted willow all snowy

The road out of ours, half way down is where I fell over!

Believe it or not, this is Lough Graney. As it's about 95% iced over, the snow is just sitting on top of the ice. It is supposed to rain tonight but then get cold again. I hope the temperature rises enough to thaw the water.

The mahonia bending under the weight of the snow.

So you remember that in the summer I planted some lobelia in my old trainers? Well, the lobelia has given up the ghost of course. I took this photo of my trainers covered in frost 2 days ago:

Then Jim took this one of them covered in snow!

I must say I think our living willow fence looks spectacular in the snow!

That's it for now. I am so behind with my photos having been off line for so long. Ah well, I'll just have to file them away.

I hope everyone is managing to keep warm.

Sorry I've been grumpy!


KathyB. said...

Your winter pictures are so beautiful, and in spite of having to deal with being cold you seem to have been able to appreciate the display nature has provided.

It is so good to have peace with your neighbors, even if you are limited to saying "hi" and waving.Good for you to take things in hand. Neighbors in the country need each other often enough and sometimes I think that need would be one all of us should have. It sure motivates one to keep peace, doesn't it? Happy New Year to you and yours!

jinksy said...

Fascinating selection of winter wonderland photos - the only plus of snowy weather!

Leatherdykeuk said...

Love the snowy willow fence.

It was brave of you to visit the neighbours.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

This sort of weather tends to make one grumpy when you can't do what you normally do without being cold. Brrrr those ice/snow photos make me cold. It is beginning to thaw here some. You can at least drive on the city streets without hazzard. Our garden hasn't thawed out yet. I am glad you checked on your grumpy neighbors. It is bound to help the situation.

steven said...

the fennel and willow shots are gorgeous. don't you think it's odd that the snow shuts down so much of the infrastructure of a country though?!!! i hope it all gets cleared up so your lives can return to normal. steven

Peggy said...

The wind and rain has reached us here in the south,the lovely white landscape is no more!
A lot of homes here are without water and/or heating due to burst pipes etc.Thankfully I have escaped that so far.
I love the willow fence in snow
Stay warm and dry!

Cat said...

wow, what a gorgeous set of photos! I love, love, love the 'willow fence', it is just beautiful! Willows are one of my favorite trees, so graceful...

The Weaver of Grass said...

A bad full of Brownie points Gina for making the first overture with those neighbours!
I keep threatening to stay in bed as it is so awful, but then I relent and get up. Today is is foggy, there is an East wind blowing, there is a slow thaw and it is sleeting - or in short it is absolutely awful. Try to keep warm.

BT said...

Hello KathyB, I'm glad you enjoyed the photos.

I feel much better having made contact with the neighbours. At least I've tried. Happy New Year to you too.

Hi Rachel, glad you liked the willow photo, it's been a favourite.

Hi Lisa. We have had some rain so that has helped a little but no water yet. The snow has mostly been chased away from our garden but we still have the great rivers of ice.

Hello steven, I think the problem is that in Ireland they rarely have any snow so it's been a bit of a surprise! The gritters and snow ploughs are very expensive and the country is pretty poor so to invest in lots of those for the odd winter such as this probably wouldn't be feasible.

I'm glad you like the willow and fennel shots. I'll tell Jim!

Hello Peggy, it's rained here too but the ice is still resistant and dangerous. Hopefully if it stays above freezing it will gradually melt and our water might come back on. I know we are far from alone in our situation! What a Winter. I'm happy you like the willow photos.

Hello Cat, good to see you. The willow photos seem to be the favourite. I dont think we've had snow on them before. We don't have any weeping willows though. Maybe we should get one. It should do brilliantly here.

I don't know which is worse, Weaver, knowing that the weather is slightly warmer but looks mucky and horrid, or being stuck in because of the snow - which looks beautiful. Rain today so the snow has melted, but more's due tomorrow! Friday should bring higher temperatures, so maybe our water will thaw at last, then the boiler should come on too.

I was brave to go see the neighbours, wasn't I? I'm glad I did.

Heather said...

Do hope the water has thawed and your boiler is working again Gina - it's miserable being cold all the time. The winter pics. are so lovely and your snow covered trainers look like furry slippers! You're allowed to let off steam on your post - I think that's one of the reasons for blogging. Most of us have had enough of the snow now and will be glad to get back to normal. It is very beautiful but oh so disruptive. Roll on Spring! Hope your neighbours appreciated your 'olive branch' and will be more friendly in future.

marianne said...

The pictures are beautiful love that fence, would like to see how it looks in spring/summer.
having trouble with neighbours sucks... glad you tried to make up.
I can 't wait for hot water to rain and the start of Spring......

Take care and stay warm and safe!

Bea said...

You certainly are having adventures living there. I'm sorry you didn't get to make your trip to see your grandbabies. Love the pictures, sorry about your bum, Buster probably is sad he isn't going to the kennels to see the other dogs.
Glad you are back on line, you KNOW you were missed, right> :)Bea

BT said...

Hello Heather. Sadly we are still without water and boiler! The temperature has risen though so the snow has gone for now, but not the ice. It's so thick, it may take a while. I'm glad you liked the photos. Snow does look pretty, but is a pain at times! How's that rug coming along?

Hello Marianne, I'm happy you like the willow fence in the snow. We cut the top off it in the spring and use those bits for other fences or baskets, that's the idea anyway.

Hello Bea, I'm glad you missed me! I received a fabulous postcard from some Zetti jobbies!! It's amazing. Glad you liked the photos. Buster is happier at home, although he enjoys playing with the dogs but doesn't like being in a shed over night!

Anonymous said...

Pretty photos and I also enjoyed your lovely new studio photos in a previous post. So fun to decorate just the way you want it and have everything handy. Georgia has had ice and snow but we still have heat and water thankfully. Wishing you all a wonderful new year dear friend.

Renee said...

I like you grumpy, and it never seems very grumpy.

Love the raggy bags.


Jason said...

Oh good shoes. Well done for talking with the neigbours. Good if it makes you feel better.

Still snowy here, but all seems pretty normal currently in the east. Bit chilly but raods fine atleast. Soon be spring! x

BT said...

Good to see you Midred, I've missed you. Our snow has about gone but ice still remains. It's so thick in places, that will take a while to shift. I'm glad you enjoyed my studio and snowy photos. Love to you and Nalley!

Renee, so good of you to drop by when you have about a million followers now!! I don't stay grumpy for long!

Hi Jason, yeah, I thought it was worth a try with the neighbours. I do feel better for it.

Our snow has gone but ice still abounds. No water yet, it must be well frozen. We had a delivery of pellets today so when we get the boiler going again we have plenty of fuel! I'm so sorry we couldn't come this time. I hope Jack wasn't too disappointed. He must be at 'big school' now?

Stampmaiden said...

I love dropping by cause you always have something fabulous to show me. If I continue living as I do, I'll never see the other part of this great big globe. So thanks for showing it to me. Sending you warmth from Los Angeles (where it rained today and our news stations had the nerve to put out "storm watch" alerts! HA).

BT said...

Hi Linda, I'm so glad you enjoy visiting my blog, you know I love yours and your endless talent. It's been sunny here today and our water is unfrozen. HURRAH!!

PAK ART said...

I'm looking forward to getting to know you better through the ABC ATC group. I absolutely love your living willow fence. I made my husband come look at the pic so he can figure out how to make me one LOL! You have such beautiful property.

BT said...

Hello Patty, good to meet you. The living willow fences aren't too hard to do, you just need the right willow and then you have to wait, once it's planted, for it to grow fatter and stronger!

They certainly look lovely in the snow, don't they?

Arija said...

Wonderful winter pictures. Your garden looks quite dreamy in its winter whites. Adore your living willow fence, a grand feature indeed.