Posted in current events, gardening, gardens4u.ca, lorieb.wordpress.com, weather

May Flowers, not Snow!

April showers are supposed to bring May flowers, not snow!

Last week our Ontario premier Doug Ford promised to lift social distancing restrictions. Landscapers like myself across the province cheered as we were included in the first group allowed back to work. As a result of this announcement, I have been a busy beaver this week with spring cleanup of my clientsgardens.

Not today! I woke up this morning to a blanket of white, fluffy snow. How can something so annoying be so pretty?…

Perhaps Mother Nature heard me groaning about my sore (overworked) muscles and decided to give me a day off…

Posted in climate, exercise, freelance writing, gardens4u, lorieb.wordpress.com, Ottawa

Exercise in Winter

What exercise do you get in winter? With my own gardening business, I get plenty of exercise between April and October, sometimes six hours per day! Exercise in winter can be tricky though, I am the first to admit I spend far too much time sitting down writing for whatever projects come my way.

However, when the snow hits, as it has often these past few days here in Ottawa, I love to get my exercise in winter with a shovel in my hand. Especially when the snow is light and fluffy as it was today. These pictures give you an idea of just how much snow we received overnight. Enough to get me out there with my shovel, but not enough to wear me out. The posts on my veranda make great snow gauges…

Who needs a gym membership when you can get an hour (or two or three some days) of cardio exercise shovelling the driveway and sidewalk? Not me!

Posted in lorieb.com

January record for snowfall

If you live in the Ottawa area you will know just how much snow we have received recently. Tuesday morning we woke up to an additional 8 cm pushing us over the top for a January record of 97cm of snow in total.

That’s 38 Imperial inches, over 3 feet, for you non-metric folks that still measure in inches and feet. A bit off topic here, but did you know the USA is one of only three countries still (predominantly) using Imperial measurements instead of metric? The other two are Myanmar and Liberia. Americans do however run 5Ks and drink from 1L wine bottles and the such.

Regardless of how you measure it, that’s a lot of snow! Other cities across the nation have also received more than their share of snow, as have many (more than usual) locations in the USA.

Now for some good news. All this snow is good for something and someone. The ski resorts must be thrilled, as would be the snow removal companies. Although those that get paid by the season, (do they still do that, or have they evolved?) instead of the number of times they have to plow, are probably cursing the snow right now. Like most of the rest of us.

I do admit to enjoy shovelling as it is pretty much the only exercise I get during my garden business offseason. Of course, that enjoyment disappears quickly when the snow falls faster than I can keep it shovelled. Now the snowbanks are so high at the edges of my driveway it is very difficult to throw the snow up that high.

Another silver lining (that must be hidden within all those snow clouds) is that lots of snow is good for insulating plants that might suffer from any freeze/thaw cycles over the winter months. So, if you forgot or never got around to covering your tender plants last fall, you can thank the January record for snowfall.


Posted in Canada, cottage life, lorieb.com, weather

Cottage visitors

During the winter months we drive up to the cottage to check on it and the property at least once a month.  The deep snow allows us to keep track (pun intended) of all visitors.

We have the two legged variety (us)

 

and the four legged visitors…

 

I wonder if the four legged variety are longing for spring as much as we two legged creatures are.  Regardless, spring still looks like a long way off!

 

 

Please be sure to visit my other blogs:
Laugh out loud (LOL) with me at Your Daily Chuckle
and
Be inspired and motivated by famous words of wisdom at WoW
My gardening website can be viewed at gardens4u

Posted in Canada, current events, lorieb.com, Ottawa

I almost made it to Chicago!

I almost made it to Chicago!  Chicago the musical that is, not the city….

 

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photo credit to the Orillia Opera House

 

I had tickets to Chicago for last night’s performance but had to miss it due to the lousy weather here in Ottawa. I had plans to drive to Barrie from Ottawa to pick up my niece and head to the evening show at the Orillia Opera House. That plan never materialized.

Environment Canada changed my plans:

Environment Canada is predicting patchy freezing rain across eastern Ontario on Saturday afternoon.  After that ends, another round of freezing rain will develop this evening and persist for much of the night”

Even though I left Ottawa in the morning, with the hope of missing the freezing rain, it started earlier than predicted.  I only got as far as Carleton Place then turned around and came home.  What should have been a 15 minuted drive, turned into close to an hour with too many cars in the ditch.  An ordinarily long drive to Barrie and back would have turned into a nightmare.

“Freezing rain will slowly change to snow overnight as colder temperatures move in. Snowfall accumulation of 5 to 10 cm are possible by Sunday”    This was correct too; I woke up to this vision of beauty out my front door this morning:

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Olivia Lloyd, the daughter of a family friend, played Velma in the show.  Reviews have been awesome; I am so disappointed that I did not get there.

The good news is I was able to transfer the tickets into my niece’s name, so she and a friend were able to enjoy the show.  Lucky for them, the drive from Barrie to Orillia was much quicker (with no freezing rain) than Ottawa to Barrie to Orillia.

That’s Canadian weather for you, unpredictable and frustrating!

Posted in Canada, cottage life, lorieb.com, nature, Ottawa, weather

Welcome to April

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Well, although our April here in Ottawa is (typically) not quite as colorful as this picture, it does bring signs of spring.  We drove up to our cottage this past weekend to check things out and still could not get in the driveway as it is covered in snow, but things are starting to thaw out:

 

Spring is here….finally!

Posted in Canada, lorieb.com, nature, Ottawa, weather

“Let it snow” belongs in December, not March!

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Snow can be pretty and welcome in December, but in March it is a bit overdone!  It is snowing here in Ottawa, again!

I am so ready for spring, cannot wait to get out to my own gardens and the ones I look after.  Check out my website GARDENS4U  to read about my gardening business.  I just finished updating it with new pictures and information.

Posted in Canada, current events, lorieb.com, Ottawa, sports, weather

Football and snow angels?

photos by Katherine Shayanpour and Kimberly Boville-Belair

Today in Ottawa, the hometown RedBlacks are taking on the Edmonton Eskimos in the CFL’s Eastern Conference final for the chance to play in the Grey Cup.  For you American football lovers, that’s our equivalent to your Super Bowl in the NFL.  Although Edmonton plays in the Western division, the fact that their season record was better than other Eastern division teams gave them a chance (called a crossover) to play off in the Eastern final.  If they beat Ottawa, there would be two Western division teams in the Grey Cup final next week.

The weather forecast predicted snow and blustery conditions today after unseasonably mild temperatures for the past month.  For once, the weather forecast was bang on.  Here in Canada we are somewhat used to playing football in the snow, although apparently there are some players on the field today that are not.

Greg Ellingson has obviously played in the snow before.  After catching a beautiful pass for the Ottawa Redblacks’ first touchdown, Ellingson created a celebratory snow angel in the end zone…

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photo by @CFL

Although the Ottawa Redblacks were winning 17-3 at halftime, there were a few tense, nail-biting minutes in the last quarter where the Edmonton Eskimos came close to tying it up, the score getting as close as 28-23.  Lots of slipping, sliding, and fumbles, a few too many dropped pass completions and turnovers, but the Redblacks held on to the lead and came out on top 35-23.

photos by Kimberly Boville-Belair and Katherine Shayanpour

Congratulations to the Ottawa RedBlacks. Bring on the Grey Cup!