Winter Routines

My photo of our Poinsettia does not do the colour justice. It certainly adds a richness of colour to the living room.

I am having a quiet, restful day today. The sky is gray and overcast, as it almost always is these days, so I have the lamp lit beside my chair, to add a bit of cheer. My crochet project is waiting for my fingers to cease tapping here, to resume the rhythm of the yarn. The tidied kitchen sits at the ready for the next frenzy of activity, which I will call lunch. The computer is playing peaceful piano music, a bit sombre really for a gray day, but calming. Wistful thoughts touch me occasionally, hoping that those who are experiencing difficult times will find comfort and peace.

So far this winter we have only experienced two short bouts of frigid weather, enjoying relatively mild weather for the most part. Tomorrow night though, another cold snap is predicted, with the night time low of -15C, and even colder nights to come. This will put the unheated basement insulation to the test! So far the basement temperature is holding at 12C (54F), but the weather has been mostly mild. We were living in a house for a few months that only reached a high of 5C (41F), before the chimneys for our heating system were installed at the country house, and we survived nicely, but not exactly comfortably. Life takes us through all kinds of experiences.

This winter is a time of rest here at Mist Cottage. Nothing much of anything going on, a bit of reading, a bit of crocheting, a bit of milling and baking, a bit of cooking, a bit of walking on the elliptical machine, all very cozy.

Attila has been putting up the last of the vapour barrier in the basement, and taping the seams. Slowly but surely the job is getting done. The project is relatively stress free for him, as there is no deadline for completion, it will get done when it gets done. Every so often he will call me down to view the progress, and take pictures, but that is my only involvement.

Our water meter has been replaced, fingers crossed it isn’t a dud, and our water bill does not skyrocket. I am keeping an eye on it. I tested it for accuracy and it seems to be reading accurately. Time will tell.

I am coming down with something, sneezing up a storm! Attila hears me from wherever he is in the house. Every time I sneeze, he calls “bless you”; from the basement, from the kitchen, from wherever he happens to be. In aid of an ounce of prevention, I decided this morning to add a teaspoon of blackstrap molasses to my morning ACV beverage (1 cup water, 1 tablespoon ACV, 2 drops liquid stevia). I replaced the stevia with 1 teaspoon of molasses. No, I do not care for it, so tomorrow I will go back to my usual routine and I will either take a teaspoon of molasses raw, or bake gingerbread cookies. So far I am favouring the cookies.



Date: 7:00 AM EST Wednesday 15 January 2020
Condition: Cloudy
Pressure: 102.2 kPa
Tendency: Rising
Temperature: 0.3°C
Dew point: -1.2°C
Humidity: 90%
Wind: WSW 7 km/h
Visibility: 24 km


“If you can’t fix it, you don’t own it.”
Kyle Wiens

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Eileen Barton

Your poinsettia is gorgeous! We are due for some actual winter weather this weekend…snow, sleet, rain. I am enjoying the mild winter we have had so far in New Jersey. But not enjoying the stomach virus that is making the rounds. I haven’t tried it myself but I heard elderberry is good for colds. Hope you feel better, Maggie.


Maggie, it is my understanding that reds have always been a photographic challenge and that red continues to be a challenge with the modern, fancy televisions. There’s magic math involved in it which I once read about in an interesting articles. Your poinsettia is beautiful in any event!

Best wishes that the sneezes are just a passing nuisance and don’t develop into anything more.


Hello Maggie and friends: I did not fall in a deep hole….the holidays have been very tough for me, but I will not opine too much. I had a Basal cell lesion removed from my inner, lower left arm. The lesion has been there for at least over 20 years, and has slowly grown from the size of a pencil eraser to about the size of a weird shaped quarter. Well, I ended up with an area about the size of an orange, and an incision over 8 inches long. I also failed to tell them NOT to use epinephrine with Lidocaine, and that sent my AFIB nuts. The surgery was on 12/26, and I was totally miserable for the following couple of weeks. It is now finally beginning to heal as it should. Progress: I found a fantastic book on Amazon…..30 DAYS TO A CLEAN AND ORGANIZED HOUSE by Katie Berry. Mike and I will begin this excursion after he gets a facet injection in his lower back on 1/30. We are both committed to this program, and it is one of the best I have ever come across. It may take us more than 30 days, but she emphasizes not to overdo….so I am looking forward to starting. Last week, on Friday, we were at 74 degrees, and than Saturday morning, we had snow. (Thunder storms Friday nite). Today it was 80 degrees; tomorrow it is supposed to be in the 40’s….nothing like Texas weather. I will probably make a big pot of Beef Stew…I can usually get 4 extra dinners in the freezer from this. It will be perfect for the chilly weather and fireplace. I hope to work on Meredith’s Afghan tomorrow. So, everything moves on. I so want to start building my stamina back….lots of gardening to get done. I always feel fulfilled when I can get my hands in the dirt, rather than just directing Juan what to do. He is my wonderful helper. I have a small, 4 wheeled “ rool-lee-round” that I can sit on and scoot around. Take care everyone.


I’ve noticed the problem with red photos that you and Wendy are talking about. The loss in sunrise/sunset pictures is almost heart-rending.

I’ve also been working on my elliptical. Happily, I enjoy using it even if I can’t work it very long, right now.