You Might be Seeing a Theme Here

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So – as you look through all the pictures from this past week, you may begin to notice a recurring theme – there is a lot of white. Mostly because that has been the landscape for the entirety of the past week and weekend. It started snowing last Saturday and has continued to do that in some form or another almost every day this week. I don’t know what your sentiments are on Winter where you live, but I’ve about had enough of it to last until at least November or December.

Monday – we welcome Winter Storm Octavia…

I don’t know why I’m making this face _ guess I was confused by the snow?

I was off work on Monday and so I battened down the hatches to wait for Winter Storm Octavia to arrive – and arrive it did around 10:30 or 11. Nothing too crazy but snow just started to float down and down and down and continued to do so all day long and into the night. A friend of ours stayed with us on Monday night so she could get to and from work in the snow on Tuesday morning – she lives in the mountains and it isn’t exactly easy to get down back roads in the snow – and so we had a grand time watching the snow fall, eating taco soup and watching some Monday night TV together. My parents probably had a less grand time on Monday night; my Mom was flying back from a weekend in Chicago with a friend and once she got to the airport in DC, she had to catch two metros out to Vienna where my Dad picked her up and then they slowly crept home on snow-covered roads. I was glad I missed that experience but it was silly of me to think that…because I’d have my own, much worse experience later in the week.

Puppy tracks in the snow.

Monday night, before the snow plow truck arrived. 

I’ve had so many friends in MS text me and tell me how pretty/beautiful/lovely the snow looks and let me tell you – it does look lovely and beautiful and pretty…for about an hour. After that, along come dogs to pee in it, plow trucks to crunch it up, people to walk through it and make it brown and gray and black and gross. It has been so cold here that snow piles up in mounds 6-8 feet high and will honestly probably be there until sometime in late March or early April when Spring arrives and properly begins thawing things out. This Winter; my first in Virginia, has certainly been a crash course in learning all about the realities of snow. I still love it but this week has tested that relationship 100%…especially when Saturday rolled around and it looked like a blizzard outside. At this point, I have seen enough snow and when I look at the forecast and see that it’s scheduled to snow again…well I just want to scream a little bit.

The “pretty” snow makes everyone;s cars look messy (okay, that’s really salt that they use to keep snow from making roads slippery…but still)…

When the snow melts, it slides down the car & forms huge icicles that look like they are anchoring the car to the ground. Pretty funny.

Tuesday afternoon exploration party across the frozen tundra….

I guess his food bowl makes a good nap spot?

Wednesday was a gorgeous day – the forecast called for snow but I just had a hard time believing that with how nice it was outside – I should have believed it though. I spent the day running errands for my new job; I had to go pick up paperwork to fill out and I went to have fingerprints done. I have to say, I am so excited about my new job; the people I will be working with are absolutely great and I can’t wait to join their team! We all clicked from my first interview and I know I’ll love working with this company. Once I finished running around the countryside on Wednesday, I went home for just a little while before going into work and out of nowhere…literally, out of a clear blue sky, over the mountains came a crazy blizzard! It only lasted about fifteen minutes but it might have been the wildest showing of weather since I’ve been here. Huge flakes swirling so fast and thick that within minutes, the view of the road had been obscured from view and the back porch was completely covered – it was wild – and just like that, it was gone!

About the business of work business…ha-ha!

A puppy paw in the snow, tracking a kitty paw in the snow – Watson has cat fever bad!

The snow arrives out of nowhere…

Covers the deck in a matter of minutes…& did I mention you can normally see the highway & the mountains from here?

Traffic lights plastered with snow!

Even the weeds in the field had a pretty intense dusting of the stuff!

The weather really got fun on Thursday when the highs hovered somewhere in the single digits and when the wind blew (which was basically all the time) it was in the negative – you guys, that is COLD. So far Watson has done really well with the cold but once it got this cold…well, I think he has reached his limits. Even with his toasty sweater on, when I take him out he immediately finds a potty spot, uses the restroom and then turns tail and hauls for the front door. He does still love snow and bounds through it with wild abandon; even when he sinks into the snow up to his neck he happily crawls himself out and keeps right on exploring. He’s adjusted so well to living in Virginia and the snow but I do think he’s really not too interested in frigid cold, ha-ha.

The many faces of Amelia at Kitchen of Hope!

She wasn’t quite awake when I took this picture, bless her.

Frigid Friday morning solution – just curl yourself around the heat vent!

The gigantic snow piles at the mall – huge hills that will probably be with us till March…

Friday when I got to work, I got some rather ominous news – news that should have told me what my weekend might hold – but I tried to remain optimistic. My assistant manager had been sick with some strain of a stomach virus/flu on Tuesday and Wednesday but she was back at work on Thursday; even though she felt pretty weak. That alone wouldn’t have been too alarming but on Thursday and Friday two other co-workers went down with the same thing and when I got told that on Friday at work…knowing that I’d worked with all three of them at some point over the past week, well I got a bit worried. I passed my afternoon at work, went home and had pizza for supper (I know…oh gee…) while the parents and I had a House of Cards marathon and then I went to bed, excited for Saturday: we were going to see the ballet Sleepy Hollow at the Kennedy Center and I was praying the snow would hold off. I prayed for the wrong thing…ha!

Watson (who has been hashtagged as #snowwatson by Hope) exploring the snowy streets on Friday afternoon.

Peering around the trees at something across the golf course…

Lemon cupcakes that I won in a Facebook post – pretty tasty.

Saturday – oh can I just attest to what a miserable day it was. I woke up at 5 AM with stomach problems of a whole different nature than throwing up and dealt with that until almost 8 AM. My stomach felt so unsettled and all I could do was try to tell myself that I was NOT getting sick…I was not. Of course, the sky started pouring snow around 8 AM and it was not light and fluffy! We weighed our options and decided we’d try to make the drive into DC so we didn’t lose our tickets to the ballet – we’d just take it slow and steady and my Mom was certain I’d feel better once we got to DC. We were operating on optimism here people! The best idea of the day? My Dad suggesting that we bring some plastic bags in the car just in case – which, thank the good Lord we did because we hadn’t made it 45 minutes down the road before my stomach problems took a turn for the worse. The dreaded stomach virus/flu/illness had struck and it had struck at a horrible moment. We got almost to the Vienna Fairfax exit before realizing that as slow as we were moving, we weren’t even going to make it to the Kennedy Center on time for the ballet.

This realization was swayed by the fact that I threw up for a second time and so we decided to just give it up and turn back. All the news we saw showed that the snow would eventually turn to sleet and it would make the roads that much worse. So our Saturday fun? Joy riding on the snow and ice, taking 4.5 hours to drive what would normally take us 2 hours to do and throwing up in Wal Mart bags in the back seat! Sound like a good time to you? Ha-yeah right! It obviously exhausted everyone because once we got home (around 2:30…we’d left at 10:30) it didn’t take long and all three of us were asleep. It snowed from 8 in the morning and was still snowing when the sun set.

The roads on the way to DC on Saturday – taken before the stomach virus crap took hold…

The only thing I “ate” for about 24 hours. Lovely.

Sunday was a long day as well. I started to struggle back to feeling like I wasn’t going to die on the bathroom floor – I was able to sip some Gatorade and finally took the bait on a piece of toast, mostly because my head was pounding due to lack of food. It’s funny when your body revolts against you – it doesn’t really revolt as a unit; your stomach turns on you but your head is still like “hello…I need you to feed me!” *sigh* Of course Sunday was absolutely beautiful and I spent most of it on the couch. My parents built some amazing snow creatures and played with Watson in the snow for almost two hours; happily taking advantage of the gorgeous weather.

Probably the most snow we’ve gotten since I have lived here.

Always begging for food…even if it’s the first piece of real food that I’ve had in almost 48 hours.

Playing in the snow is tiring.

All in all, this past week was good but man, the weekend definitely took things to a new level of crummy. I told my Mom that I didn’t think I’d had a stomach bug/flu in a long time and I don’t care to have it again. Heaven knows, I’m  making the climb back to feeling normal (I actually ate some real food today, ha-ha) but the weekend whacked the week in the face! Eek! 

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