Posted in Air, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Life, Maryland, Nature, Photography, Quotes, Spirit, Walking & Wandering, Weather, Winter

If we were having coffee



Coffee it is best to buy by the bag, as it improves by keeping.  Let it hang in the bag, in a dry place, and it loses its rank smell and taste.

~ Catharine E. Beecher, ‘Miss Beecher’s Domestic Receipt-Book’ (1846)

Getting comfortable.
Getting comfortable in the tree.

If we were having coffee (or whatever your choice of beverage happens to be), I would tell you that it is bitterly cold here today.  But then again, I wouldn’t have to tell you, would I?  You would be here to feel the harsh wind and the numbing cold.  A lot of folks are experiencing this latest blast of arctic air, and it’s even colder in some places.

Angry bird?  I don't think he's enjoying the cold.
Angry bird? I don’t think he’s enjoying the cold.

Since we’re on the subject of the weather, we had thunder snow last night.  Have you ever experienced thunder snow?  M and I were in the man-cave, watching a movie (“Boyhood” — which, by the way, is an excellent film), when we saw a flash of light that drew us both to the window to see what was going on.  That’s when we heard the rumble of thunder and noticed that it was snowing like crazy.  I don’t know what happened to the snow.  It must have blown out to sea.  There is barely a dusting of it to be seen today.

One more because this is the only bird willing to sit and have his portrait done.
One more because this is the only bird willing to sit and have his portrait done.  He allows me to get so close these days that I have to back up to take a picture when I have the big lens on the camera.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that Maddy, my youngest granddaughter, is having her cast removed tomorrow.  I talked with her on the phone this morning, and I asked her what’s the first thing she wants to do after they take the cast off her arm.  She said, “Take a long, hot bath.”  I wasn’t expecting that answer from a 5-year-old, and it made me laugh.  I suspect it’s not about a Calgon-take-me-away moment for her, but more about playing in the tub with her toys.

This is a Before picture.  Ignore the water on the floor.  I took this photo on the day there was flooding from the washing machine, and it's the best shot I have of the laundry room as it used to be.
This is a Before picture. Ignore the water on the floor. I took this photo on the day there was flooding from the washing machine, and it’s the best shot I have of the laundry room as it used to be.

If we were having coffee, I would show you how much the laundry/mud room has changed now that we’re finished renovating it.  You might have noticed on your way in since this is the main entrance to the house.  There’s no walkway to the front door so it hardly ever gets used.  I was thinking the other day that nobody used the front door at my parents’ house, either.  There was a walkway and it was the “formal” entrance, but friends and family never entered that way.  They used the side door or the back door depending on where they wanted to be: the kitchen or the living room.  The kitchen, of course, was always a popular spot.  It usually is in most homes.

Almost finished.
Almost finished.

Our renovated laundry/mud room is all bright and shiny now instead of dark and dirty and dingy.  It’s finished, but I haven’t gotten around to taking the final “After” shots.  I need to declutter out there now that we’re using it before I take photos.

Layers of ice.
Layers of ice.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you about my quick trip down to the Point.  The howling winds have left debris all over the roads, mostly pine needles, small branches, and pine cones.  It made me wonder what’s going on in our woods.  I’ll have to wait to find out.  The wind is blowing at a brisk 20 mph, gusting to 30-40 mph.  It’s not a good day to be hiking around under trees.

In the marsh.
In the marsh.

I went to the Point to see the frozen sea spray, and was surprised to see that the river is frozen.  I’d show you, but the only photo in which you can see anything recognizable is the one labeled “Layers of ice.”  I don’t know if the camera didn’t like the cold and/or the wind, or if I put the lens on wrong.  It wouldn’t focus and everything was overexposed.  Whatever the case, the trip was worth it just to see the layers and slabs of ice on the beach and the beautiful ice formations created by the sea spray.  I’ll try again tomorrow when the wind isn’t as bad.

When I returned from the Point, since I was already bundled up, I walked out to the marsh to have a look.  The ice was sparkling in the sunlight.  I took my old camera with me on this short walk and it worked just fine.

A channel through the marsh.
A channel through the marsh.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I’m still slowly recovering from the “simple, out-patient surgery” that wasn’t as simple as it sounded when the doc suggested it.  I am surprised by how long it’s taking to get back to normal, and have to remind myself that sometimes healing takes time.  And patience.  I’m good at patience in some situations.  Not so good at it in others.  This is one of those others.  Perhaps it’s good that it’s too cold for long walks or working in the garden.  Did I mention that M and I are planning our vegetable garden?  I don’t think I have.  I received an email about two weeks ago that the folks who supplied us with CSA vegetables last year are not going to be doing it this year.  After a little mourning, we decided we could and should grow these veggies ourselves.  I’m going to start by planting a new asparagus bed.  The old one, although well established, isn’t going to work out because of all the poison ivy growing in there.  I’d rather not take chances with poison ivy especially since M is so highly allergic to it.  I’m experienced with planting and establishing an asparagus bed, having done so when we lived in the Bogs.

Dark-eyed Junco
Dark-eyed Junco

If we were having coffee, I would thank you for stopping by and enjoying a cuppa with me.  I’ve read that in the U.K., “cuppa” means a cup of tea, but here in the U.S. it has been broadened to mean just about any hot beverage.  I just made some hot chocolate.  You’re welcome to stay a while longer and have some if you’d like, or I can fix up a thermos for you to take on the road.  Just return the container when you stop by next week.  Sunset is at 5:41 PM today, and I’ll be watching it from the warmth of the living room where we have a good view of the sunlight playing through the marsh grasses.

Juncos winter here.
Juncos winter here.

Be good, be kind, be loving.  Just Be.  🙂

This post is in response to Part Time Monster’s #WeekendCoffeeShare.  Jump in and join us.  I’d love to hear all about what you were up to this week.


Robin is... too many things to list, but here is a start: an artist and writer; a photographer and saunterer; a daughter and sister and granddaughter; a friend, a partner, a wife, a mother, and a grandmother; a gardener, a great and imaginative cook, and the creator of wonderful sandwiches.

30 thoughts on “If we were having coffee

  1. I love the renovations! What a bright room you now have.

    And once again, you’ve done a wonderful job of guiding us on a tour of what it’s like out there for you now. I suspect we’ll also get pictures of your efforts growing veggies later on. Neat!


    1. Thanks, Corina. 🙂 I take pictures of everything so it’s highly likely you’ll be seeing the garden. One of these days I’ll put together a collage or slideshow of the renovations. We’ve done so much since we’ve been here that I hardly recognize the place. This is the last time I’m going to do a whole-house renovation. It wasn’t so bad when we did it in Ohio because we had the luxury of living elsewhere while we did the renovations. I shouldn’t complain. We got a great deal on the place, and never could have afforded waterfront property (and 35 acres) if the house and property hadn’t been trashed as badly as they were.

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh, I know, David! I would, too. I don’t know how they survive such wicked cold. I put plenty of food out for them so at least they won’t have to expend too much energy or heat trying to find something to eat.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I think I’ll skip having coffee at your place today and invite you down to mine instead. The weather is much more friendly and bright and we could go for a wander on the beach , but do be sure to bring your sunhat and sunglasses..

    How do those poor birds survive such cold? I have never even heard of thunder snow before. That is surely a most peculiar juxtaposition of weather conditions. The gods are playing games with you! I did enjoy the quote from Miss Beecher. One wonders what and where the coffee was and came from …… We are spoilt today for sure!!


    1. Thank you, Pauline. I’d love to come to your place for coffee. 🙂 I often wonder how the birds manage when it’s this cold so I looked into it. Food, good shelter (and huddling), fluffing up their feathers, and shivering all help to keep them warm.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. It has just reached a toasty 11 degrees here for the day at nearly 5 p.m. Last evening just after lamenting a wrong weather forcast–as no snow had fallen, we got the snow at a rate of 3 inches an hour and squallling whiteout! It didnt’ snow for long but we got far more than was expected and then with the high winds and very low recored temps, windchills waaaaay below zero…I would appreciate a tea-like hot beverage! The sun has been blazing in through the windows valiantly, tempting one to feel lazy for staying indoors, until one caves to guilt and opens the front door only to slam it and to head back to the warmer upstairs and under several blankets. I am really grateful to the new windows because even with these and a reading of 70 on the temp thing in the house it feels freezing cold and fingers and toes are blues an purples!


    1. Hot tea coming right up, Elisa! Do you have an electric heat pump? I ask because we do, and it NEVER feels warm in our house during the winter months. Apparently they don’t keep up with the cold well.


      1. Yes, a brand new one this season that has done MUCH better than the old one in the keeping up, this time though I have it flipped over to supplemental heat! Must go out driving in this, this morning. Taking blankets along in case of emergency.


        1. Hope your outing went well, Elisa, and that you didn’t need the blankets. Our heat pump flips over to the supplemental heat all the time (which drives up the electricity bill). Ugh. I miss forced air gas heating.


  4. Congratulations on getting your laundry room finished! So bright now, and what a wonderful mud-room sink. I love your ice photos. I know those photos were hard won as you braved the wind and cold. Thanks for getting them so I could enjoy the beauty of the ice and still stay inside and bake today 😉 That bird looks well fed, Robin. Could it be you are hiring him with a well-stocked feeder?


    1. Thank you, WG. 🙂 My father asked the same question (about feeding the bird). I don’t feed him. He lives out by our little cemetery and I don’t have feeders out that way. I whistle when I see him, and mockingbirds are so territorial that I think he comes to see if there’s another bird in his space. Or maybe he’s just a ham and wants his picture taken. lol!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Before bundling up for the trek over for coffee I think I might be bold enough to ask if you have soup on so I can have some before I trek back out in the frigid air and be well stocked internally before heading back! 🙂


  6. If we were having coffee I might have to stay long enough for a second cup to catch up on everything that’s been going on.
    I’d like to say I won’t leave it so long between visits next time but you know how things are, I do like to read through your posts so I put them off until I have more than just a few seconds to spare and before I know it, I’ve missed so much.
    I’ll put the kettle on here and join you for a cuppa while I have the chance. 🙂


  7. I love seeing your before and after renovation pictures. Seems like it has been while since you’ve shared one of those. I hope you are feeling better soon. It is frustrating when you feel like you can’t do all that you wish to do . That arctic cold has been blowing all over the northeast and I can tell you I’ve had enough of it! Temps are still below zero as I’m having my coffee and writing this comment! Love your puffed up bird.
    I like the idea of this prompt. It is technically not the weekend any more, but perhaps I could get away with using it if I write a post today since it is the Monday of a long weekend for most people?


    1. I think you should do it, Karma! You’re right about it being a long weekend for a lot of people so technically, it’s still a weekend share. Go for it. 🙂

      Thank you. It has been a while. The renovations are going more slowly now so there hasn’t been much to show.


  8. Oh, hot chocolate! The arctic front just knocked at our back door. Temps dropped 20 degrees so far. Molly and I walked early and are now ready to snug inside for a bit.
    How lovely a warm bath must sound after having a cast. May she slosh and soak with joy.
    Your laundry/mud room is amazing – such space, storage, and a place to take off shoes. Envious – we had one close in out last house and didn’t realize how wonderful it was. Every wet winter reminds me here.
    Your first bird and the marsh pix are my favorites today


Comments are delightful and always appreciated. I will respond when I can (life is keeping me busy!), and/or come around to visit you at your place soon. Thank you!

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