I know, what a pairing right?
I wasn’t sure we were going to have a white Christmas here, we often don’t, somehow always managing to have a thaw right before Christmas that melts the white stuff already on the ground. Heck, some years we don’t get any snow till after January 1st, at which point Mother Nature makes up for her kindness by dumping feet of the stuff on us. And sure enough, this past weekend we had temps in the 50’s with rain, resulting in all but the largest of snow piles melting into nothing.
But this year the few flakes that were drifting out of the sky when we left to go to Christmas Eve dinner at my Inlaws had turned into full on white out conditions by the time we left to come home. Its only a couple inches of snow, but it made driving home interesting. Apollo’s thrilled though.
Their family tradition is to open one gift on Christmas Eve, and this year my SIL planned to be spending Christmas dinner with HER Inlaws so the gifts chosen to open were the ones from her family to everyone else. Her gift to us this year was a new “welcome” mat for our front steps. Our current one is decidedly faded and worn. Please note the “‘ around the word “welcome”. Our current mat states “You read my door mat, thats enough social interaction for one day”. THIS is the new one. Which sent the entire family into gales of laughter when they read it. I love it, but when I flipped it over, and stopped to read the attached “warning label” I laughed even harder:
The other present I was handed last night was my belated Birthday gift from my MIL. My birthday was last month and she completely forgot to get me anything, I told her not to worry about it, birthday dinner and cake was plenty, but she insisted. She ordered several books off my Amazon Wish List, one of them Backyard Winter Gardening by Caleb Warnock.
I’ve been fascinated by the concept of winter gardening for a while, but the large majority of instruction and discussion on it that I’ve found has been done by folks in climates different from mine. Someone on the west coast, or a zone and a half warmer than I, is going to have different success with different techniques that I would. Technically we’re zone 5b, however I’ve repeatedly seen plants that are supposedly hardy to zone 5 not survive our winters. So I was skeptical that any of the winter gardening techniques that I was seeing would work here. The author of this book lives in the Rocky Mountains, and has recorded winter temps in his garden as low as -17. So I figure if HE can do a winter garden with these techniques than I ought to be able to pull off something here.
Husband practically lit up when he spotted me reading about winter grown broccoli last night. After my one disastrous attempt to grow broccoli two summers ago I’ve not tried anything close since. We may be trying again this next winter. I will attempt to remember to blog about how what when and what the results are!