Welcome to 'Attic of the Heart'!

Welcome from north-central Connecticut! In this blog I will share whatever is in my heart, on my mind, or something interesting I've found to share. Thanks for stopping by!


Monday, December 21, 2009

It came, but...

it only deposited about 4 inches of snow here in central CT. Eastern MA and RI got nailed, though. Up to 20 inches in the Cape. We didn't really get the winds this far inland either. I guess this isn't a bad thing, LoL.
What is it with the holiday blues? I was all psyched up in November. I had nostalgic sentimental fantasies about how wonderful it was going to be here for Christmas this year. My parents are coming, so we won't be alone. This is wonderful! And I am so glad they are coming, and I'm sure we will have a good time. Really, that hasn't got a whole lot to do with my present mood though. Seems I go through this every year, no matter whether we stay or go. I seem to have lost the Christmas spirit about the first week of December. Where did it go?
Ok. Maybe I overdid it on the Christmas music, starting before Thanksgiving. I'm not exactly tired of it, but, perhaps the initial thrill is over. Perhaps once this week is over, and the house is cleaned and the baking done, I will be a bit less stressed and looking forward to just relaxing. That's it. I just need to start cleaning this house and work on the baking. Alright then.
Ummm... did I mention I am not fond of cleaning? And maybe my baking list is just a wee bit too long. I just love making lists, but the reality is, I always bite off more than I can chew. And subconsciously, I know this. Perhaps that's the 'stress button' going off in the back of my brain somewhere. I mean, how much can 4 people possibly eat?! Let me rephrase that. How much SHOULD 4 people possibly eat? Let's face it. Overloading on carbs and sweets just makes every one tired and cranky by the 2nd or 3rd day. Been there, done that. And buying enough appetizers to feed a herd of elephants, well, perhaps I should whittle that list down a bit too. I will just spend too much, and throw half of it away. Ok, maybe not 'throw' it away, as much as stuff ourselves so we don't waste it. :0)
Only one thing to do then. Where's the broom and mop bucket?

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Nor'easter on it's way!

It's that time of year, especially for New England. A nor'easter is working it's way up the seaboard. We are forecasted to get 7 - 12 inches, but could be locally higher. They are saying it could be near blizzard conditions on the Mass coast and RI. Wow...
Usually, though, we don't get these kinds of storms until after Christmas. But the last couple of winters have proven otherwise. Seems last year we had snow at Thanksgiving, and it never did go away. We are also having quite cold temps here. Down in the teens at night, and 20 - 30's daily. We cycle up and down, week to week, it seems in temps. Having lived in other parts of New England, it's always interesting to see the different influences from the Canadian artic air and the warmer coastal breezes. Usually the coast influences our area here in CT, but we do get a the occasional blast from the north.
My parents, OTH, get much colder temps in the winter than we do. It's been 0 F up there already, and of course, will get much colder at night as the winter wears on. Even further north, up in Aroostook County, Maine, you can expect more frigid temps, getting as low as -30F. I do remember one winter we had a low of -35 to -40, and no vehicles would start. Even plugged in. Fortunately, my hubby lived near work, and walked up the hill to the shop. But even then, a 15 or 20 minute walk in sub zero temps can be dangerous if you aren't adequately protected.
With a tank full of oil, a bucket of water for the flush, misc. containers of drinking water, some fire logs and maple logs on hand, we are ok for a day or so if things should get bad. Fireplaces are not very efficient, but it will do in a pinch. We'd love a wood stove, but since we are renting, we have no choice in that. We can only hope that the power doesn't go off. If it does, the worst I have seen is about 7 hours here. Usually 3 - 5. If I know a storm is coming, I've learned to jack up the heat a bit just in case, as then it will take longer for the house to cool off. Saving on heat during a storm isn't a very good idea, I've learned.
We insulated the house more this winter, putting plastic over a number of windows and doors. For a house built in the mid 80's, it's very drafty! It was built by a construction company that literally threw up a number of houses at a time, and with no one on site to really monitor things, I would say that the insulation around the doors and windows is very minimal. Plus, never mind the fact that after 20 years, one should be looking at replacing doors and windows for something much more efficient. Oh well, we've weatherstripped and plasticized the best we can for a rental.
Well, this will be short. We are going to a local Christmas concert this afternoon held at the middle school. I'll let you know how it goes. Have a warm and cozy weekend!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Welcome Abigail Julienne!
Last night, a small bundle of blessing arrived in our family. I now have a new niece! After many hours of labor, she arrived, weighing 7 lbs. 6 oz. After a long and difficult labor, her exhausted mom and quite stressed dad are very glad she's here. She is fine in every way.
I can't wait to meet her! My brother is going to email pics as soon as he gets a chance. I'm sure every moment he has free will be at the hospital until they come home. My parents will go up Sunday to see her. I told them 'LOTS OF PICTURES!!' Since my folks are coming down for Christmas, I'm sure I will get to see several then, if not before.
Boy, it's mighty hard being 9 hours away during a time like this.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

First storm of the season today...

We received about 6 or 7 inches early this morning, now followed by ice pellets. Perhaps rain a bit later today. Lovely. I filled a few containers with water just in case the power went off, and turned up the heat a bit more than usual. Today is not the day to skimp on heat. That way it will take longer to lose heat if the power should fail. And it seems that happens more often than not here in Connecticut. Could be due to the numerous trees that line our many roads. We can lose power in most moderate rain storms, with or without wind. I lived several years in Maine and New Brunswick, but never lost power like we do here. Of course, they've cut down the trees alot up there too, and the road crews are very diligent about keep the ditches cleared of new growth. Trees grow faster and easier here in this more moderate climate.
We went and got our tree this past weekend. It sits naked in all it's pine glory here in my living room, waiting to be adorned. I usually give it a few days for the branches to settle a bit, so the ornaments won't fall off as the tree adjusts to a warmer climate. Then I always feel I need to clean the living room before cluttering it up with the many boxes of decoration, which I keep in large plastic tubs. I think I will try to bring up just one at a time, starting with the lights first, followed by garland, then ornaments. I keep meaning to get a new star for the top, but can never seem to find the one I want, or it's too much money. Oh well. Maybe during the local after-Christmas sales I will find one. I guess I will just use my old many lighted silvert tinsel star again this year.I am listening to Christmas music online at KLVV.com. They play nothing but Christian music, and at this time of year, all Christmas Christian music. Such a great variety out there! Sometimes they throw a few classics in too, like Bing Crosby. One of my new favorites is 'It Came Upon A Midnight Clear' by Josh Groban. I just LOVE the chorus at the end. It's like getting a peek at the angels singing before the throne. I get so blessed by it.
I am so glad I finished clearing my plants off the deck last weekend, storing the last two heavy pots in the garage. I tossed the contents of 4 window boxes this year, as we plan to move in the spring and I didn't want to lug those heavy things. And most likely they wouldn't do well next spring anyway. I saved a really nice geranium, a few lantanas, a neat pink mum (I forget the name, but it's a bit different than the traditional fall mums) and a couple of others I forget the names of. I try to remember to water them once a month until spring, then hope for the best. I've had a bit of luck, some years better than others. I keep them in the garage next to a north window (the only one). I had a neat idea this year. I have an old wooden step ladder, so I just put them up on the steps so they are mostly off the floor and take up less space. Also gives them more equal access to the limited sunlight.
Well, the tree is calling. I better finish cleaning up the livingroom and get one of the boxes in the storeroom. My parents are coming Christmas day (from 9 hours away) to stay for a week, so I have a good excuse to really decorate this year.
Happy decorating!