No, no, no! Do not think it is summer already in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.
(But–I whisper excitedly–it was 60 degrees yesterday afternoon! And I had tea on the deck! And coffee this morning on the deck with my daughter in New York City! Read on…)
Here’s what’s happening here in the Northwoods. The snow and icicles are melting. The sun shines warm in the February sky. Yesterday afternoon the frozen thermometer hit 60 degrees (15 degrees celsius) and I did what all good Yoopers do when spring waves its fickle wand.
I found the deck chairs in the basement and carried two upstairs. Don’t get worried. I didn’t fall down our circular stairway in the endeavor, although it was a challenging haul.
I started the tea water. Flung open the deck sliding glass door!
Shoveled away the snow from an appropriate area. Shoveled enough snow for two chairs.
Settled the two chairs outside, just in case sulking ice-fishing husband wanted to join. (Poor man says they may be losing ALL their hard-earned ice on Keweenaw Bay. And you know how short the season is. And you know how we’re disrupting the short season anyway to go to San Diego in three weeks…And you know how they just got to fish semi-deep ice last weekend… Seriously, readers, I sympathize with him. Sort of.)
He never appeared, so I determined what Kind of Tea one ought sip on the deck during a February thaw.
Answer: Almond Tisane gifted by the daughter who now lives in New York City. I am a bad tea drinker because I like to EAT the almond tisane after brewing. This is, apparently, not socially correct. Good tea drinkers sip their brew and discard the tisane.
I look at the tisane and ascertain that everything looks edible. There is no black tea (Camellia sinensis) in Tisane. Just edible goodies. Why not nibble? Mmmm….good. Shhhhh….do not tell. Let’s maintain some modicum of respectability, shall we?
Back to yesterday. Bright red tea. Long snow shadows. Chirping chickadees and pounding woodpeckers. Dripping snow-water.
Does life ever get any better than this?
Fast-forward to this morning. Repeat yesterday’s show: pull out chair and place on nicely shoveled deck. This time brew coffee. Call daughter in New York City.
“Do you want to have coffee with me on the deck?” I ask, stretching my legs unto the wooden support structure.
“I want to be with you in the woods,” she says.
This morning one needed a light fleece jacket and sneakers while lounging on the deck. One needed to shovel a bit more snow to create a better springtime ambience.
We mustn’t get too used to this scenario, though. The weather forecasters are clamouring: 50-60 mph winds tomorrow! Snow! Gusting! Blowing! Wild winter weather!
It was good while it lasted, wasn’t it?
I hope you enjoy our time on the deck. Please come again when Spring peaks in for another visit.
P.S. Gosh! Almost forgot to tell you–how could I?–that the 30-day gratitude challenge on Facebook ended today. I posted thirty days of gratitude, dear reader. Let’s repeat that once more. Thirty days. It wasn’t always easy and it wasn’t always fun, but, darn it, I did it. And many others joined in to it as well! And today feel a marvelous sense of accomplishment and gratitude and joy! Almost as good as that 60 degree sun… 🙂
I’m grateful for having found your marvellous blog. Thanks for the celsius translation. These heady extra mild days are what get you through the looooong winter. I know. I used to live in Ontario.
Cheers, Sybil in Eastern Passage, NS
Why thank you, Sybil. It’s good getting to know you, too. You know what we’re going through…Ontario is practically our next-door neighbor!
Kathy – You bring back such memories! I used to do the same thing. Sometimes I’d bundle in a blanket on a lounge chair in the snow just to watch the chickadees at the feeder…or the stars and northern lights at night. Crazy to anyone watching but I LOVED it! Those icicle pictures are amazing and I can almost taste the tea!
You know, Susan, that is a very inspiring thought. Bundling up and sitting in the snow to watch the stars. I rarely do that. Wonder why? Will ponder that when some more snow covers the deck… What is your favorite kind of tea?
That’s wonderful that you completed the gratitude challenge – congrats!! 🙂 We have to grab these “warm” days whenever we get them, it’s 50 degrees right now (but unfortunately, I’m still stuck in the office), and I’ve REALLY been enjoying watching the snow and ice melt away. I know that it will come back, but just to have a break was a sigh of relief!
Thanks, Holly for your kind words about the gratitude challenge. Is your weather suppose to turn cold again tomorrow or the next day? It’s still 50 out right now–at almost 8 p.m.–but it’s suppose to dip to the 20’s tonight. And then…well, we can only imagine.
What an excellent cup of tea, and what a stunning deck to have it on… complete with sunshine.
Whatever tomorrow brings, no one can take away today… the sun has been and it will come again.
Sooner? Later? Who knows? (who cares) it was here today and it was beautiful. That’s the main thing.
I’d love to drink tea with you in the woods too. sadly your spiral staircase would defeat me in my current state… so I’ll dream on of wide open spaces, and an icicle dripping the tune of Springtime coming coming coming. ( btw go ahead and eat the tisane …I won’t tell LOL)
That’s OK, kiwidutch. We wouldn’t have to maneuver down the spiral staircase. We could go outside, walk around to our walk-out basement, get the chairs and bring them around to the front of the house. Does that sound OK? (By the way I can’t wait until my daughter reads this and sees that I’ve announced tisane-eating to the world. lol!)
Kathy – Today’s my protected day for writing. When my little “bing – you’ve got mail” indicated that you’d posted, I put on the kettle to boil. Little did I know that I’d be enjoying my break with you on your porch in the woods. And I must say, you have a lovely way of making people feel right at home. Thank you for the sojourn.
We had virtual tea together, Laurie! All right! But what kind of tea did you drink? Was it lemon tea?
Oh, that must have been so nice to sit on your deck with a cup of tea and enjoy the nice weather. Crossing my fingers that winter won’t last too much longer and you can soon sit on your deck again and enjoy the warm sun.
I will cross fingers, too, Mrs. Click! It was so nice. Such a mid-winter treat… Do you like tea?
Just 46 here, but fogged everywhere, and the Duo and I dancing in it. Extraordinary what a little warming trend can do to a northern soul.
Gerry, I heard it was foggy in the middle part of the Upper Peninsula. Therefore, it seems logical that you would have fog, too. Although I don’t know why it seems logical. And YES our northern souls are dancing!
I know the joys of sitting on a deck in the sun surrounded by banks of snow. It doesn’t last, but what does? Sometimes, my snowbanks are so high, I even put my white, while skin into an old bathing suit – the better to soak up that Vitamin D.
Good evening, Barb. Although I think it’s barely evening now out there in the Rockies. I guess we shouldn’t worry about these things lasting, should we? Just sit there with our faces toward that Vitamin D. WAIT A MINUTE! A BATHING SUIT? Ohmygoodness, you sound like my daughter. She used to do that when she was younger. Don’t know about you guys!
We are lucky enough to be experiencing a thaw too – its in the 50’s today and supposed to be tomorrow too (more seasonably back to the 30’s next week). I’d have loved to have a coffee with you on the deck (my deck chairs look like yours!) but our snow piles are still too large for my back to stand shoveling it. I suspect by the time the snow melts enough to be shovel-able, the thaw will be over.
Hi Ms. Karma, glad to hear about your thaw. I’ll bet your snow piles are deeper than ours this year. You guys have had a LOT of snow. You are probably right about those shovel-able piles and the demise of the Thaw.
I always wonder what next after a great story!
I love the chickadee pics too…..It was nice wasn’t it….
Aevryne at work was looking at me funny when I went to lunch without my coat on….Heck I am from Minnesota, I can handle warm weather …..even when its a bit cold yet…
Kim, yep, you sure sound like you’re from Minnesota! Bet you have your coat on today–if it’s as c-c-c-cold down there as it is here! The wind is blowing at 40-50 mph and we’ve lost power at least once…
Like minds. I, here in Appleton, shoveled off the deck,as well. I enjoyed some time basking in the sun with Eddy the dog.We both knew it would not last, and sure enoughtoday was extremely gloomy and foggy. But it was a wonderful reprise in the midst of winter, like having dessert for breakfast.Yummy!
Hi, Jane. I didn’t realize you were in Appleton. We used to go down there shopping every once in a blue moon. And I have an elderly neighbor that moved down to Clintonville. Is it cold today down there? brrrr, cold today here. I must get motivated to go to the mailbox.
Congratulations on completing the gratitude challenge, Kathy! A 30-day-long commitment is quite something, so lots of pats on the back.
Your tea on the deck sounds positively de-light-ful! May I join you with a slice of moist carrot-and-cinnamon cake with just the tiniest bit of frosting?
Ahhhh… now that’s the life. 🙂
Reggie. Please. “Slice of moist carrot-and-cinnamon cake with just the tiniest bit of frosting”?? Please come over now! It’s too cold to sit on the deck today but we could stoke up the woodstove and have tea at the kitchen table. Wouldn’t that be fabulous?
I cleared pine needles from our front deck a week or so ago, thinking that maybe it would soon be warm enough to bring out a chair and enjoy a cup of coffee, or chai, or glass of wine on the deck. The bright sunshine teased me into that hope. But no, not yet! The rest of this month is to be cold with maybe snow. I much enjoyed the tea on your deck in the 60 degree weather however!
Carol, interesting that you have to clean pine needles. I have a feeling we won’t be on the deck again for a loooong while, but who knows? (I would join you for a glass of wine, too!) Glad you enjoyed the tea, though…we’ll do it again, shall we?
Well done on meeting your 30-day challenge! 🙂
That tea looks delicious. I’ve been enjoying the February thaw too.
Thank you, Robin. Can’t believe the 30 days are over. Have you ever had almond tisane?
No, I haven’t. It sounds delightful. 🙂
Very nice, Kathy! Congratulations on the gratitude challenge. I find that it’s amazing how all we have to do when we want to feel better is conjure up a feeling of gratitude and all negativity melts away. In the past, I would wait until some external event occurred to elicit these feelings. Since I did my gratitude challenge I learned that I don’t have to wait.
Thank you, Marianne! You are one of my gratitude gurus, you know. I like it that we can learn not to wait…
I’m blushing. Sometimes when I do things, I like to dive right in and immerse myself.
Hi Kathy, we’re in the middle of a wild storm, wind and torrential rain, branches falling and flying. No tea on the patio for us….settling for a glass of wine in our room and turning up the heater. Hopefully we’re bearing the brunt of this before you arrive!!
Your accomplishment warms my heart 🙂
Colleen, as you wrote this–Friday, the 18th–we were in the midst of a similar wild wind storm. (No rain though!) A glass of wine in the room sounds equally appealing. Thank you for your kind & loving support.
The red tea looks super-delicious. I haven’t tasted one till date ( I don’t think we can get red tea here, hmm.. got to find out! ). Its nice you took some time to sit back and enjoy the weather, of course! amidst the strong thrilling winter winds. And, very well accomplished 30 day gratitude challenge! 🙂
Good luck discovering some red tea, Sonali. I think that tea and tisanes are different…we can’t get tisanes here. Guess you have to go to a Really Big City like NYC to get tisane. Thank you for your kind words about the gratitude challenge.
It’s so lovely when we get those early spring…or is it late winter?….thaws! I used to tell my mother (who had moved south) that they couldn’t appreciate spring like we did. But you do go a bit further, when you shovel off the deck to enjoy it! 🙂 You are inspiring…because when we get home from NM tomorrow I just might have to shovel a patch of spring onto MY deck!
You have expressed it perfectly, Dawn! We have learned to truly truly truly appreciate spring. there is noting like freezing cold temperatures to make you appreciate the first of warm weather. (By the way, if your weather is as cold as ours is now, I suspect you’ll be cuddling up inside!)
I’m back. It’s So refreshing to be reading your blogs again. Congrats on that gratitude challenge. I must say doing that for 30 day, I doubt I’d be able to do that, but then again you never know. Let me know when there is another one please.
have a GREAT day 🙂
Glad to see you back, Shelly. Hope you are doing well! As for the gratitude challenge, I think you can start one yourself at any time. I know of one lady on Facebook who just started one a couple of days ago. It is challenging to keep at it day after day, though. Hope you have a great day, too!
A gratitude challenge ! What a wonderful idea and great realization Kathy, congratulations 🙂 My gratitude goes out to you tonight, for the thoughts and lovely pictures you shared. For the tea on your deck too. I have had my share of apples as I sat on a log in a Spring-like forest lately. Much gratitude for those unexpected moments. Have a pleasant week, Kathy.
Sitting on a log munching apples as spring approached in your forest sounds like a beautiful image to contemplate, Isa. I am glad you’ve had a taste of spring. Am now imagining the sweet crunch of that apple, and wishing I could share one with you. Pleasant week to you as well, Isabelle.
Kathy, you certainly know how to seize the day and live in the moment! Congratulations on the successful completion of your 30-day gratitude challenge! Wishing you still more joy in abundance!
Quite often I can, Barbara. Not always, though. This blog keeps reminding me that it’s possible to do it, day by day. Thank you also for your congratulations. I am grateful for you…