A hard freeze scheduled -

A hard freeze is scheduled for tonight. My tender plants have been brought safely indoors, but I'm crossing my fingers tonight in the hopes that my irises—so perilously close to blooming—will not be terribly stunted by this last freeze. I'm hoping to get a few good closeup shots of the blooms to use as a potential thematic idea for domesticat, and I'd prefer not to have to wait another year.

Assuming the weather warms appropriately, I'll be doing a lot of work in the garden tomorrow afternoon. I need to prune our existing crepe myrtles and get a couple of the new ones planted. This will be entertaining—I've never been great at manhandling shovels and dirt, especially when packed Alabama red clay is concerned. Time to learn, it seems.If my life ever had a theme, I believe it would read thus: "Things need doing. Guess I'd better get to it, hm?"

We are a moated castle!

Oh, and we discovered this morning just why the drainage ditch on the far side of our house is so steep. I did not realize how heavily it rained last night until I raised the blinds in the master bedroom.

The water is several feet deep in the ditch, running fast, and is about five feet from our house.

It would take probably double or triple the heavy rains last night to come close to our house because of the size of the ditch, but it was still quite disconcerting to see so much water close to my window.Oh, and if we can find one, we're going to plant a Japanese red maple in the front yard. Perhaps a flowering cherry tree in the back yard, close to the house. But farther away, I'm thinking about planting an oak tree.

Given how mobile twentysomething geeks are, I think it highly unlikely that I will ever see that tree at its full height—but someone will live here at that time, and they'll appreciate it.

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From the hotel: stupid ice storms

This won't get posted until after I get home.
Whenever that is.We woke up this morning to the beginnings of a freak ice storm. As we checked the weather, I began to panic. From what we were reading, this was going to be a monster of an ice storm—with the roads becoming impassable until around Thursday, or so people were guessing.

I have come many miles to visit...

After a long and exhausting day of having all three nephews over at the house, I told my mother what Jeff and I have been quietly discussing for some time: the fact that unless something strange happens, that we won't be having children.

She says she's not disappointed. I hope that she's telling me the truth; it's hard to tell. But I know that she's not surprised. She mentioned that some of my relatives have started asking her when Jeff and I planned to start having children, and that her response has been that she's never been too sure that we planned on having any at all.

Come home, out of the fog.

I told Jeff on the way home today that it felt like Tuesday. Most of this week vanished in a combination of sleep and fever. But I have answers now.

Jeff wasn't able to go in to work at his usual time this morning; the truck just wasn't able to make it up the ice-covered hills this morning. So he came home to me sitting in my overly-plush terry bathrobe. We talked. I mentioned that I wasn't sure if I'd be able to make it to the doctor's office because of the ice.

He offered to check my throat to see if he could see anything. In retrospect, it bothers me that neither of us thought to do this sooner. After a couple of mishaps and me nearly gagging on a soup spoon, Jeff says, essentially, "What are these white spots on the back of your throat?"

'Cold,' said my fingertips

Jeff awakened me from a sound sleep at 8:30 this morning. He shook my left shoulder until I opened my eyes and glared nearsightedly at him. Even without my glasses, I could see the grin spreading across his face.

"Get up. I think you need to look outside."

The cooler air came as a shock as I threw the down comforter back. Cold. I'm always cold, except in blistering midsummer, but this morning's chill air came as a shock to my bare legs. The double window is only a couple of feet from my side of the bed. I stepped over to it, avoiding dirty laundry and already-read books, and slipped my fingers between the slats of the blinds.Cold, said my fingertips. I fanned my fingers apart and squinted through the blinds. My eyes were dazzled for the briefest of moments before clamping shut to deal with the extra light.

Snow, said my sleepy brain. White. White everywhere. About an inch of snow.