When dreams come true…

.. in the form of snow flakes…

We finally had snow! Daughter couldn’t contain her happiness, ‘Winter is finally here! All my dreams have come true!’. *rolls eyes* I had no idea that this what she dreamed about 🙂

But you can’t really blame her, though.. I stepped out, to take out the garbage, and ended up standing in the snow for a few minutes, my face tilted up, soaking in the wonderful feeling of snow flakes falling on my cheeks… I think my neighbour(who was busy scraping snow off his car) on the opposite side might have just found me a bit crazy 🙂

We went walking for the first time, in the middle of the night. And it felt surreal. Of course, the fact that we were the only people on the road, did not help 🙂

Can’t have enough of this tree…

Love the way the whole place looks magical when it snows!

Fruits for the picking…

Sunday was another snow-centric day. We had the great plan of walking in the snow to a friend’s place(we had to drop off something). It was just a mile away, but yes, we did have a bit of an adventure. Daughter pretended that her legs were stuck in the snow, and we had to pretend that it was funny 🙂

The snow had already started to thaw, and the roads were all full of water. I had the experience of being splashed in the face, by a car racing by!! Ugh! The thought of it makes me go ‘Yuck’! But what is an adventure without any fun of this sort, eh? We weren’t the only people on the streets, but one Indian family passing by in their car, stared at us as if we were crazy 😦 I thought I had imagined it, but husband saw it too – it was not just me 🙂

It took us around 30 mins one way – thanks to daughter’s antics, husband’s photography, and me getting splashed!

But it was a walk which I would probably never forget. And as we got back, the snow was already melting off..

I don’t know why, but that made me really sad.. As if the magic was wearing off..

Although, I have to say, from a practical point of view, this is what I would term ‘sensible snow’. Happened on a Saturday, Sunday the temperatures were high enough to get the snow to thaw, and today, on Monday, it is almost BAU. No school cancellations or traffic disruptions.. Or the icy roads that come right after snow..so far.. Hopefully, I haven’t spoken too soon 🙂

The longing …

..for snow. It happens every year, as soon as November comes round the corner..

Daughter keeps a look out for snow as soon as winter starts. Every morning she looks out of the window to see if it snowed at night. So far, this year has been surprisingly mild. October had a week which felt like summer. November was extremely mild. It felt too good to be true. We were all happy, except for daughter.

She could not understand why it was already winter and yet the snow refused to make an appearance. Apparently winter meant snow. Once I asked her why she wanted snow so badly. ‘Because, children love snow, Amma!’

Can’t say anything to that, can we?

Last evening, we were returning home when we had a sleet shower. Checking the BBC, I saw the prediction of light snow. I can’t say I did not feel a tiny bit of excitement too, at the prospect of snow. There is something about it – at least the day it falls. Two days later, I would be back to cursing it 🙂

This morning, I peeped out of the window, and saw a dusting of snow over everything. Waking up daughter was never so quick. The word ‘snow’ was enough to have her jump out of the bed and run straight to the window. ‘Wooow!’, she said, and went on to relay the news to Daddy.

The day soon progressed with us getting ready for school. Just before stepping out, I glanced out of the window and saw gently falling, light snow flakes. That looked so peaceful and beautiful. That would be an enjoyable walk to school, I thought.

We stepped out, locked the door, and started walking when the snow suddenly became heavy – really heavy. We had snow flying into our eyes, and mouth. We could hardly see where we were going. After minutes of walking in the snow, daughter totally fed up says, ‘I asked for snow, not a SNOW STORM!

 

When the most interesting thing happens to be the weather..

There is a reason why the favourite topic of the British is the weather.

The last few days, we have been gloating over the rest of our friends on this island. The whole country seems to be under 10 inches of snow, while we have a beautiful dusting of Christmas Card snow. Yes, it is cold, and walking outside is as good as asking for a broken leg, but still! At least we are not snowed in. You see, it is normally the other way around. We are the ones with the snow, while those in swanky places like London, call us telling us how much they wished they could have that kind of snow.  Well, you asked for it.

We may not have the snow, but we have all the cold and more. The temperatures touching -11 at night and the max daytime temperature has been -4. I have never lived in such cold climes before. The other day, I was convinced that I had lost all my fingers – despite being well covered in warm gloves. I found I was not the only one covering her mouth and nose, in a desperate effort to prevent my nose from freezing and falling off my face.

Yesterday, I mustered courage, after a couple of days, to enter my conservatory. Our conservatory has central heating – but it is way too cold, even with the heating. So we had just switched of the heating there. The only time I would enter it was to water my precious plants. Yesterday, I noticed that there was a layer of ice, in the saucers that I keep under my potted plants, to catch any water that might leak of the pot. Ice! That’s when I realized that my plants were frozen in place 😦 I rescued the few that looked might have the potential to be rescued.  Just days ago, they were fine and still blooming. This morning, I found them all lank and limp. I can’t tell you how heart-broken I am. Do any of you know what I could do to save my petunias and geraniums? I am almost too afraid to google, I doubt if I could do anything to rescue them.

This morning, I found my watering can, which I had abandoned, still full of water, in the conservatory when I had seen the state of my plants, was frozen. Daughter had a wonderful time touching the ice and shrieking  – anything to keep her entertained during school holidays which does not involve any outdoor activity.

All these are still alright, but the travel chaos is the worst. People stranded in airports, holidays canceled – heart-breaking, isn’t it Our friends had their holiday planned 6 months earlier, and it almost got canceled. Thankfully, they have managed to board the flight.

You know what is the worst thing to happen? High Street shops are having massive sales to lure people into the shops, and with the weather being the way it is, we just can’t go 😦 Life’s little ironies…

We have been waiting..

.. for snow..

Yesterday, the forecast said ‘Light snow showers at 3:00’, and we had our eyes peeled at 3, waiting. The wait went on until 4. Daughter gave up before me. I logged in to check if the weather forecast had changed, only to realize that it said very clearly, ’03:00 am (Thu). Silly me, not to read it properly.

The first thing, I did this morning was to check if the forecast held true. Well, it most certainly did  – but it must have been a very very light shower, the only thing left was a thin layer of ice on the top of cars. How disappointing. This morning was slightly better. We have had light showers of snow, which disappears as soon as it hits the ground, but it is better than, nothing, don’t you think?

Here is how it was last year. And here’s one from last year for today’s Thursday Challenge- “WEATHER” (Snow, Sun, Cloudy, Rain, Lightening, Rainbow, Tornado,…).

It’s a wordy wednesday for a change..

It’s been a while since I posted. It is funny how there are times, when I get loads of time to post, and no ideas, and other times when I have my head brimming with posts but not a minute to spare.

It had been one of those weeks, where nothing went as per plan. I think it started last Saturday. We had a fun Saturday planned out. We had some shopping to get done, and then the plan was to catch the 5:30 show of Despicable Me. We started from home later than planned and decided to catch a quick sandwich lunch on the way. Lunch out of the way, we drove to an outlet village some miles away from town. It was when we reached the village, that I realized that I did not have my handbag with me. Now, I am a person who needs to carry something. I have, till date, never forgotten or lost my handbag anywhere. It had my purse with around 50 odd pounds as well as all my credit, debit, store cards, loyalty cards, library cards.. The thought of calling up all these organisations to cancel and request for a new card itself was mind boggling.

The only logical place, I could have forgotten my handbag was the sandwich place. I remember having it with me. So we started to search for the phone number of the place( thank god for smart phones). We were hoping that we could call them and check if somebody had found it. Finally after a lot of tries, we got through to them and I can only say that it was such a relief that they had indeed found my handbag and had kept it away safe! Seriously, I can’t tell how you much of  a relief it was. And they were kind enough to hold on to it, until we got back from our shopping 🙂

Yes, we did watch the movie(although the 7:30 show, and Poohi was all sleepy at the end of it 😦 ) , and loved it.

Come Sunday and Poohi comes down with a slight temperature. All she was worried about was about going to school the next day. They have been busy with their Christmas concert practice, and the thought of missing it was the worst thing ever. Well, she has missed a few days now, is she goes to bed every night, praying to be alright the next day.

Have so much to post – book reviews to be done, and no time at all! Having the child at home is a very time consuming activity!

In other unrelated stuff – the Bihar Elections Results are wonderful, don’t you think? For a change, the focus of Bihar elections was not on caste/religion/identity politics but on the developmental plank. Now if only that could be done on the national level as well.

And we have snow(albeit light snow showers) predicted for this afternoon! We are so excited! As I was telling somebody else,  I wait for snow, until it actually snows 🙂

On about nothing – again.

I have to stop writing about the weather – but weather seems to be the most happening thing around here. The most clicked website on my laptop in the BBC weather page. The weather forecast for today was sleet and snow and icy roads – very treacherous and dangerous. For us, it just means that we stay put indoors today.

The biggest fallout is that going to school was out of question. The school was considerate enough to text us parents to let us know that they would ‘understand’ if our children were not to come to school today given the conditions outside. School closures were in the news last week with people alleging that schools were opting for the easy way out by closing schools. London Mayor Boris Johnson asked the education sector ‘to think twice before closing any schools in the event of further bad weather’ . Lots of parents seem to be upset by the closures too. For us, it was a quick decision not to send her to school – made easier by the fact that the school themselves had kept the nursery closed. From these reports, it just showed how important every day’s work is, for so many people even more so when they were single parents with no alternative options of child care to fall back on. For many, the only option was to brave the weather, take their children to school and then go to work.

On a lighter note, my biggest problem was keeping daughter entertained. Reading, playacting, painting – anything to keep her from being bored. School is so full of activities that the things we do at home is not half as fun – even less so, when we have stay indoors. These days , her favourite activity is pretending to be a princess and wearing a throw like a cape and walking around. It drives me nuts because the ‘cape’ ensures that all the cushions land up on the floor and the house looks like a hurricane passed through it 🙂 I will be GLAD when school starts again.

A friend and I had been discussing about how our children love school so much. They don’t have any problems waking up for school. Poohi wakes up all excited about going to school. The only exception is when she is unwell. She wakes up with, ‘Is it morning yet? Time for school?’ One of the reasons I think children find it difficult to wake up on time is because they have not had their full sleep. Especially when they sleep late and have to wake up on time. I make it a point to ensure that Poohi’s bedtime is not delayed during weekdays. During weekends, once in a while it does get late, especially if we go over for dinner to friend’s places but never during school nights.  A friend of mine was telling me how once she had guests over on a Sunday night and they did not leave until 2 in the morning. Her child was up all that time too – unable to sleep when there were guests around. How inconsiderate is that?

Oh dear, I just noticed that I have rambled on and on.. Just before signing off – what is your policy on the movies you would like your child to watch? I am extra careful and am very very very careful about what she watches. I am even very careful about what I read to her. I am not too fond of fairy tales where the princesses are waiting for Prince Charming to ‘rescue’ them. Call me crazy but I am not too comfortable with introducing such ideas into her head.  I know parents who let their children(of Poohi’s age )  watch movies like Rang De Basanti and think that I am being over-protective.  While RDB is a great movie – I still feel that it is not appropriate for my daughter’s age. What would be your take?

Snow-clad splendour

Last night was supposed to be the coldest night in the UK. Some parts of UK were expected to be as cold as -20 degrees – almost as cold as the South Pole. They are calling it the ‘white-out’ of Britain. Pics of UK from the sky looks all white. Snow does make everything look much prettier.

Never having experienced snow before, I was all excited about it during the move to London, only to know that it hardly snows in London. True to the word, it hardly snowed all the time we were there. A maximum of one or two days of snow which disappeared soon enough too. Snow remained that romantic, exciting event (thanks to the movies, I guess) which never really happened to me.

It all changed when we moved here to Leeds. Snow was proper heavy snow here. Last year we had some decent amount of snow. This year, however, I think, all my craving for snow, has been satisfied. It has snowed like never before.  It snowed 2 days before we left for our vacation and it was fascinating to watch. Huge, giant snowflakes coming down and covering everything. I spent ages looking out at the snow, instead of packing. Thankfully it stopped the day we were travelling or we  might have never gone on holiday.

We came back to gloriously sunny Britain after 10 days and a small part of me was disappointed by the fact that the snow seemed to have gone for good. But not for long, we drove into heavy snow on the way, which thankfully lasted only around 20 minutes. To make up for the snow we missed during the Christmas week,  last one week, it has snowed and snowed and snowed. I had the fortune/misfortune of getting to trek 3 miles in snow – which was rather fun, quite unexpectedly. Making snowmen in the garden and having fun snow fights 🙂 Of course, not everybody is happy with the snow. Daughter is heart-broken that her school is closed due to snow. Even making snowmen, does not entirely compensate for not being able to go to school. Cars lie abandoned all over the place. We came across a car abandoned right in the middle of a small roundabout. Scraping the snow off the car everyday is one painful thing as we have recently learnt.

As they say, difficult times bring out the best or worst in people. We hear of heroic stories about people going out of their way to help others in difficulty, we also hear of clever thieves who used the opportunity to take off with cars which the owners had left unattended with the engines running for defrosting. Guess it takes all kinds!

Leaving you with a few pics from around here – all cold and frosty!

The streets and the sidewalks all merged into one.

It almost looks like a black and white pic, doesn’t it?

The solitary bench all piled up with snow.

And it gets whiter as the snow fall increases.

On the way back from school – all disappointed at having to go home earlier than usual.

Making snowmen in the garden, kind of, made up for no school.

So how has the weather been at your end? Hope you all are having a less white winter.