Everyday Adventures in Havachon Heaven

The Good, Crazy, & Adorable Life of One Havachon Puppy

The Beautiful Blizzard of 2016

I know we’re in the minority, but we’ve been so disappointed with the unseasonably warm temps this winter. Looking out of our windows on Christmas day and seeing our grass greener and healthier than it was all summer was not a welcome sight to us. Seeing the daffodils shoot up through the ground in January was just wrong.

But the beautiful blizzard made up for it all – with gusto! It started snowing four hours earlier than predicted; that storm blew in at 8 PM on Friday night and went straight through Sunday morning! Saturday was incredible with wild winds and tons of snow – we got 2 feet and drifts of over 4 feet! And I must say, it was a very considerate storm to start after everyone was home from work and end in plenty of time for everyone to shovel out on Sunday! 🙂

Here’s the view from our back door, you can see how deep the snow is outside. We still haven’t been able to open that door! And here’s Daisy in her new winter coat!

View from the back door...yeah, it's kinda deep...

View from the back door…yeah, it’s kinda deep…

Can we go out this way Mommy? It's way over my head, but I'll just burrow through like a gopher!

Can we go out this way Mommy? It’s way over my head, but I’ll just burrow through like a gopher!

We resurrected Daisy’s Winter Pee Patch – this will give you an idea of how high some of the snow was – other drifts were even higher!

Thanks for the nice high wall, I have lots of Pee Patch privacy now! :)

Thanks for the nice high wall, I have lots of Pee Patch privacy now! 🙂

We had a huge snow overhang off the roof that looked like an avalanche waiting to happen and an icicle that got longer and longer every day:

That icicle is over 3 feet long!

That icicle is over 3 feet long!

That Sunday closed with a beautiful winter sunset, complete with tree silhouettes:

blizzard 2016 6

And our little sweetie wrapped up her day in one of her favorite ways – a good cuddle with a good friend:

The snow was fun, but it's great to be warm and cozy inside. :)

The snow was fun, but it’s great to be warm and cozy inside. 🙂

We’re part of the Thursday Barks & Bytes blog hop!

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Snowy Spring, or Winter’s PS

Look what happened on the first day of spring!

We woke up to a good 6-8 inches of snow on the ground!

We woke up to a good 6-8 inches of snow on the ground!

Which drew birds by the dozens again, including some of my winter favorites:

I love how these little beauties nestle into the snowy branches.

I love how these little beauties nestle into the snowy branches.

Later in the day, a brilliant blue sky let us know spring was keeping an eye on the untimely snowfall…

spring snow

And a wonderful thing happened – Daisy suddenly started enjoying the snow! She didn’t avoid it like usual, she went right into the thick of it, and after I stopped taking pictures (of course) she romped into the deepest snow in the middle of the yard – chest-high on her!

Hey, this snow isn't so bad after all! It's kinda fun!

Hey, this snow isn’t so bad after all! It’s kinda fun! Now let’s go for the deep stuff!

Of course we paid the inevitable price – 20 minutes of blow-drying ice balls off her feet, legs, chest and stomach. But it was well worth it! I hope she takes to the snow much sooner next winter.

Our daffodils – the four-inch stems that had managed to push through after the ice, snow, and a flooded flower garden – took it well and now that the snow is gone, they’re giving it their all. What hardy little troopers!

And given the “all clear”, a few of our purple crocuses hurried to show their beauty before the next storm could shut them down – there are about four buds in this picture, two of which are just waiting to burst open (you can see that the garden hasn’t been cleaned up yet after winter – there are still some small snow deposits around).

spring crocus

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Winter’s Last Hurrah – And Why I Love Winter

Winter went out in its full glory last week – it was one of the most beautiful snowfalls we’ve had all season. The air was filled with sparkling flakes floating down for over 12 hours, and we got about 8 more inches on the ground. It was spectacular.

Hunkering down during the storm.

Hunkering down during the storm.

The day after the snowfall, I went to one of my favorite natural areas with a lake that attracts everything from herons and swans to geese and ducks; I’ve even photographed huge turtles there.

swans 5

swans 2

Going for the deep dive...

Going for the deep dive…

The air was clean and ever so breathable, the cold was invigorating, and an endless thick, white carpet welcomed me and cushioned my steps.

snow scene colts neck

 

Forward...march! Look at those crazy tracks!

Forward…march! Look at those crazy footprints!

If you think my love of winter white makes me eligible for a visit from the men in white coats, maybe this list of twelve reasons (and I have more!) why I love winter can make a case for my sanity. 🙂

1. No spiders, stinging bugs, or creepy crawlies. This I cannot overstate!
2. No major time spent on yardwork, so our weekends are free for fun.
3. No heavy traffic when driving somewhere beautiful. Places like the beach aren’t clogged with people who don’t know what trash cans are for.
4. No unbearable, unbreathable, energy-sapping heat/humidity index of over 100 degrees.
5. No spiders.
6. Absolutely beautiful, contrasting, sparkling long-range scenery.
7. Coming home late at night without dodging tons of flying creepy crawlies around the porch light while trying fruitlessly to keep them from coming in with us.
8. No mosquito bites. Not being awakened at 2 AM by high-pitched mosquito whining in my ear, then spending the next hour not finding the little bugger, going back to bed at 3 AM only to be awakened by the same screeching at 3:10.
9. I love the look of winter clothes and being bundled up in layers and sweaters. I love snuggling under piles of blankets.
10. Ironically, we have to keep all the shades in the back of the house down during summer days because the sun is too strong and heats up the house too much (not to mention fading furniture!). I feel more closed in during summer than winter!
11. Way more birds at the feeder during snowfalls than in any other season.
12. NO SPIDERS.

At different points during the day, we had over 2 dozen birds at a time around the feeder!

At different points during the day, we had over 2 dozen birds at a time around the feeder!

That said, I do find beauty in all seasons. I love our organic herb and veggie gardens as well as taking photos of all of nature’s beauty.

Our rosemary plant thawing out. Love those droplets!

Our rosemary plant thawing out. Love those droplets!

We’re now dealing with The Great Thaw, which is not a pretty thing. Spring didn’t work its way in, it pounced with temps in the 40s and now 50s, so our foot-plus of snow is melting so fast, the ground can’t absorb it. We’ve got mud puddles everywhere…not an attractive look on Miss Daisy’s little white paws!

Dozing Daisy.

Dozing Daisy after a good mud romp and a paw bath.

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Winter’s Beauty – The Final Round?

Winter isn’t giving up easily this year – we’ve had two snowstorms and an ice storm this week. Call me crazy – as I know many will on this subject considering the endless snows we’ve had this season – but the sight of snow falling still makes me smile and makes my heart happy.

I awoke to another beautiful snowfall this morning and found this little guy waiting for his turn at the feeder.

I awoke to another beautiful snowfall this morning and found this little guy waiting for his turn at the feeder.

Outdoors I love standing out in the middle of an open area during a snowfall; the frigid pre-snow chill is replaced by a distinctive warmth that makes the outdoors comfortable. I thoroughly enjoy the unique atmosphere, exquisite flakes, and unparalleled quiet that defines a good snowfall. I guess I’ll always get a bit of a childhood thrill when I see snow.

A little mid-week melting had this guy claiming the one green spot under the feeder.

A little mid-week melting had this guy claiming the one green spot under the feeder.

But the next day came another snow, and we had another full house.

But the next day came another snow, and we had another full house.

Indoors I love the cozy feeling as I watch every little aspect of nature flawlessly outlined and defined by snow. The contrasts are breathtaking. The ground is uniformly clean yet undulating with rolling heights of snow and unusual patterns. There’s nothing similar about snowfalls to me; each is as unique as every flake that falls.

Wave patterns in the snow.

Wave patterns in the snow.

The ice storm this week did make things dangerous, but there’s an exceptional beauty that comes with it too. It’s rare and one of my favorite sights.

Like it's covered in diamonds.

Like it’s covered in diamonds.

Like a cut crystal coating.

Like a cut crystal coating.

Is this where the phrase "dripping with diamonds" came from?

Is this where the phrase “dripping with diamonds” came from?

A rare sight indeed.

A rare sight indeed.

Crystal-sheathed branches.

Crystal-sheathed branches.

I can’t help but chuckle when I think of how extremely opposite my photographs are from my blogging friend Mary, who posts the most amazing photos of desert life. I absolutely love her photography. During winter, our photos are in complete contrast with each other, but that’s one of the things I love about this world – opposites are beautiful if we’ll only take the time to see the beauty and stop complaining about the differences. If only humans could see that in each other…

If everyone appreciates the differences in dogs, then why not in each other? I don't understand humans...

If everyone appreciates the differences in dogs, then why not in each other? I don’t understand humans…

So call me crazy, throw rotten tomatoes at me, but I love winter. And I’ll be sorry to see it go when the temps hit the 40s next week. Yes, I do find plenty of gorgeousness in spring and summer too, because every season has its own special beauty, but come June I’ll be starting my annual countdown to fall. 🙂

We’re part of a snowy Thursday Barks and Bytes blog hop!

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Late Winter Doings, Daisy Style

Well we got a momentary peek of early spring temps one day last week when the thermometer read 44 degrees – for a whole six hours. The next day we were back into single-digit wind chills; but hey, at least they’re not going below zero!

We’ve had a couple more beautiful snowfalls too, and the five inches or so that’s on the ground now is frozen solid. And I mean solid – the ice at the base of the driveway is at least two inches thick.

I can never get enough of winter photography; to me winter presents unique and ever-changing beauty.

The rising sun creates a reddish glow on the trees, which we don't see when the leaves are out.

The rising sun creates a reddish glow on the trees, which we don’t see when the leaves are out.

Winter sunset, which we also can't see when the trees are in full leaf bloom.

A particularly vivid sunset, which we also can’t see when the trees are in full leaf bloom.

We’ve made sure to keep the birdies well fed, and in turn, they’ve given us a lot of entertainment along with their cuteness.

You can always tell how cold winter is by how chubby the birds are!

You can always tell how cold winter is by how chubby the birds are!

These guys took the easy pickins.

These guys took the easy pickins.

And while dozens of little birdies braved the weather to visit our feeder during snowstorms, ice storms, and frigid temps, what did Daisy do?

Yup, that's our little log-dog squishing herself between a blanket and the sofa back, oblivious to the birds' winter plight.

Yup, that’s our little log-dog squishing herself between a blanket and the sofa back, oblivious to the birds’ winter plight. Don’t know how she even breathes like that!

We were happy to see that not only did our rosemary plant survive the winter and continue to give us extremely aromatic herbs, but it provided a nice spot for birds awaiting their turn at the feeder.

I'll just wait my turn on this yummy-smelling bush...

I’ll just wait my turn on this yummy-smelling bush…

Mom and Pop cardinals continued flocking in for food – this guy demonstrated how flexible a bird neck is:

What you lookin' at??

What you lookin’ at??

Meanwhile, Daisy did her best impression of a canine airplane:

Airplane Daisy.

Airplane-ears Daisy.

I guess every creature has their own way of getting through each season!

 

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Winter Visitors and Daisy’s Poop Patch

Oh yes, Daisy always gets her own personal little Poop Patch in the snow since she refuses to go “old school”. We even make a pathway from the patio to the patch for our finicky little miss. Here’s the one from this last storm, a few days later after the snow had gone down by about half (and it’s still there):

A nice little poop patch complete with pathway from the patio.

A nice little poop patch complete with pathway from the patio. It looks smaller than it actually is.

We’ve had a LOT of wonderful visitors, even more than usual. Yet another reason why I love snow.

You can always tell from the plumpness of the birds just how cold it is!

You can always tell from the plumpness of the birds just how cold it is!

One of my favorite winter scenes is the vivid color contrast of cardinals against the snow.

One of my favorite winter scenes is the vivid color contrast of cardinals against the snow.

I love when different types of birds share the banquet.

I love when different types of birds share the banquet together. Humans could take a lesson!

We’ve also had morning doves and blue jays as well as deer, but the deer dart through the yard and fly over the fence too fast for me to get my camera, so I just watch and enjoy. 🙂

We’re part of the Thursday Barks and Bytes blog hop!

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Snowmeggedon? I think not…

They called it “Snowmeggedon”. I call that snowverkill. A real snowverreaction.

Okay, I’ll stop.

When I was growing up, this “winter event” would have been called a snowstorm. Yes, it had the potential to be a blizzard with about 3 feet of snow, but even so…what was it we used to call that? Oh yes, a BLIZZARD.

Only the beginning...

Only the beginning…

Now everything has to have huge hype and a silly name. The one smart thing they did, though, was to enforce a travel ban for our state and our neighboring state of New York. They closed all bridges and tunnels, and they even made it a crime to drive a vehicle from 8 PM last night “until further notice”. They wanted to keep the roads open for plows and emergency vehicles, which is really smart. It’s unfortunate that they actually have to threaten people in order to get them to use common sense and stay off the roads, but for some reason there are too many people who don’t listen when governors and mayors simply tell them to stay off the roadways. The result of making it a crime to drive was that there were far fewer accidents and deaths, which is definitely a good thing. Hooray!

I’ll get off my soapbox now and move on to the beauty and cuteness of this wonderful snowstorm that we’ve been hoping for all winter. We’ve got about a foot and a half on the ground! It came down for over 24 hours straight. 😀

And what is Miss Daisy doing? Two things, primarily – playing and cuddling. But not in that order.

Daisy doesn’t like deep snow, probably because she’s only several inches off the ground herself and the snow is over her head at this point. Understandable. But a couple of days ago we got a few inches, which froze so she could romp on top of it.

Blurry racing photos always mean FUN!

Blurry racing photos always mean FUN!

But this morning the snow was so deep, she absolutely refused to take a walk. She got to the edge of the open patio and tried to run back inside. DD was insistent, so Daisy did the next best thing:

Surely a patio is as good as grass in a storm, no?

Surely a patio is as good as grass in a storm, no?

We now have a lovely yellow patch on our patio. Daisy absolutely refused to venture into the 18 inches of snow, and who can blame her?

She headed straight back for the door, ready to engage in her most favorite snow day activity:

Now THIS is what snow days are for!

Now THIS is what snow days are for!

We’re so happy we finally got a decent snowfall…even if it wasn’t a “snowpocalypse”… 🙂

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A Snowy Easter Surprise

Tuesday morning, just a few days before Easter, we woke up to another snowfall!

During one of my slow strolls outdoors over the previous weekend, this was what our daffodil patch looked like:

Happy spring daffodils in our front yard.

Happy spring daffodils in our front yard.

And here it is Tuesday morning:

Unhappy frozen daffodils.

Unhappy frozen daffodils.

Kind of hard to believe those pics are only a few days apart!

It seems so incongruous to see spring buds on a frozen tree:

spring snow 4.14 2

Now, I know most people here in the northeast are talking about how tired they are of all the snow we’ve had this winter, but I’m not one of them. As all my blog buddies know, I LOVE snow and would live in a year-round autumn-winter climate if there was one – with, of course, an annual 3-month break for spring to plant my gardens and give the trees enough leaves so they could change color and fall again! I could do without summer altogether. (Don’t throw rotten tomatoes at me!)

I discovered that I can’t take walks around my yard anymore because the other day, my heel hit a slight depression in the grass, which normally I wouldn’t even have noticed. But with my back still so sensitive, it felt like a bolt of lightning went through my lower spine. That set me back a bit pain-wise; then that evening I sneezed twice, which caused the pain to skyrocket. Apparently more muscles in the body contract during a sneeze than I realized!

So I’m back indoors now (which is fine, Friday was a whole 39 degrees!) and will attempt another venture outdoors this week – but this time, I’ll only walk on even sidewalk surfaces! And of course, my little sweetie will come with me…if I can pry her off my floor bed!

Daisy, cozy in my floor blankets, with the Guilty Gate behind her.

Daisy, cozy in my floor blankets, with the Guilty Gate behind her.

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Daisy, the Ice Princess

And so it came about a week ago, just as predicted – a snow storm followed by an ice storm. I think the winter of 2014 is making up for all those years that we haven’t had a proper winter!

MORE snow?? Wow, we've had more snow this year than I've seen in my entire 3 years! :)

MORE snow is on its way?? Wow, we’ve had more snow this year than I’ve seen in my entire 3 years!

Daisy was kept very busy inside, sounding off her doggy-alarm every time a chunk of ice or snow fell off the roof and smashed onto the ground. To be fair, the ice and snow are so heavy that they did sound like they were ripping off part of the house.

AND NOW WE’RE GETTING ANOTHER SNOW/ICE STORM TODAY INTO TOMORROW – our sixth this winter! Right on top of the many, many inches of snow still on the ground! This is the storm that crippled Atlanta, Georgia yesterday. With the high winds we’re getting, they’re saying this may actually be classified as a blizzard.  I’m not surprised, there are near-white-out conditions outside right now (as you can see by the lack of clarity in the photo). Here’s what I woke up to, and we have a l-o-n-g way yet to go (possibly 14″!).

Just the start of the latest snowstorm in a record-breaking snow season!

Just the start of the latest snowstorm in a record-breaking snow season!

So what’s the best thing for a chilly puppy to do after using up so much energy protecting us from all that falling ice and running through the snow outside?

Find the puppy!

Find the puppy!

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Here We Go Again…..

The last batch of snow is still on the ground, and yesterday we got another big blast! Another foot of snow came down – it snowed for 12 hours straight, from around 5 AM through 5 PM. But it was a gorgeous snowfall – tons of flakes gently making their way straight down with no wind. Just making everything look beautiful.

I love that very special quiet that comes with a good snowfall, and how pristine everything looks. No cars moving, no outdoor garden equipment blaring, and everything is unified by a sparkling blanket of white. It’s exquisite.

Early morning light kissing the snow-topped trees in our back yard. Just breathtaking!

Early morning light kissing the snow-topped trees in our back yard. Just breathtaking!

Even our house was decorated in a sparkling icy fringe:

Mother Nature graced our home with crystal icicles.

Mother Nature graced our home with crystal icicles.

As I mentioned in a previous post, Daisy is staying outside longer and longer now that she’s wrapped up in her warm red puffy coat. Well, guess what? She’s starting to like the snow again! She seems to have a pattern. First she’s on Border Patrol all the way around the yard:

I must make sure our borders are secure from intruders! Oh wait, what's this? Deer tracks? Cool!

I must make sure our borders are secure from intruders! Oh wait, what’s this? Deer tracks? Cool!

Then she takes DD on a wild run, zigzagging to and fro across the yard:

Race ya back to the house!

Race ya back to the house!

Haha beat ya!

Haha beat ya!

Now that’s the kind of snow fun I love to see a dog have! 😀 I can’t wait to introduce her to snowballs…. Tonight we’re supposed to get more snow – anywhere from 6 to 16 inches, depending on how the storm moves. Tomorrow it gets a bit scary, though, because the storm is supposed to turn into an ice storm, making driving extremely dangerous. They’re already telling us to stay home and off the streets. I don’t mind more snow, but ice storms are another thing!

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