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  1. We had close to 3 inches of snow here, and the average temperature which is normally around 50 high during the day has disappeared! Likewise with autumn – we had maybe a few weeks of it, if that. Last night it looked like a blizzard outside. The winds picked up yesterday afternoon but about 1 a.m. this morning they really started howling out of the northwest and were blowing what was left of the snow still on roofs and trees all over the place. This morning I woke up to inches deep drifts although we didn’t get any new snow (thank goodness!) Leaves were still all over several trees in my neighborhood, but after those winds came through last night (so strong they woke me up howling past my bedroom windows) this morning everything looks pretty bare. It makes me sad. This is way too early. We had wind chills earlier this morning of around 15 degrees. The Sun is out though, and the sky is pretty clear. The roadways have melted away the snow drift from all the blowing last night and the sidewalks are okay too – didn’t have to salt or shovel. Things are a mess, though, with blown off leaves all over snowed covered lawns. Geez Louise – you just can’t win with this “new normal” weather, which isn’t anywhere near what normal used to be! One of the commenters mentioned how her pets have had issues adjusting to daylight savings time. I and my tribe (herd?) of squirrels do, too. Now when I get up, although it says 6:30 a.m. on the clock (I get up later since I retired 3 years ago), I know in my body clock and by the level of light outside that it’s actually 7:30 a.m., and so do the squirrels. They are busy climbing on the patio door screen (which stays on all year although I know I should figure out how to remove it and stash it in the garage for the winter) and shaking/rattling it against the window! It makes a racket, more than enough to get my attention. The little buggers, they sure are smart! Of course I always open up the patio door and throw out hands-full of nuts. They are SO fat and furry this year, they seem larger (fatter/furrier) than usual. That doesn’t bode well for what kind of winter this is going to be. I just hope it’s not as bad as the winter of 2012-2013 was when we had a nearly constant “Polar Vortex” parked over SE Wisconsin. YECHY! It was SO awful for weeks at a time as the Vortex never seemed to move, temperatures with wind chills nearly every day 20 to 30 below zero and no sunshine to be seen. Now being retired, I can pick the times I venture out. Tomorrow it is supposed to get into the high 30s and still be sunny, so I will head to the supermarket then and stock up. I’m running out of everything, it’s time to go but I’d been postponing the trip because it was just too nasty to walk the long half mile there, and then lug 20 pounds of groceries the long half mile back in 2 canvas totes. You’d think I’d have the arms of Popeye by now, but sadly, they still look fat and flabby. Oh well.

  2. Love love love Miss Ivy Lou and Charlie too !
    These guys make my day !
    Oh and by the way my name is Kathy Lou ,I forgot to tell you that when you named Ivy Lou !
    Have a great weekend and stay warm it is cold on the mountain here in Tennessee !

  3. Love your stories Brenda! Our cat recently discover a wooden clothespin on the floor that I had dropped. We have tile floors. That thing has made the trip around the house a million times?
    Maybe that can replace Ivy’s stem she loved so much?

  4. I’ve read that the Swiffer residue on floors is harmful to pets. I hope that replacing it helps Charlie to feel better.

    I’ve used an unscented laundry soap called Charlie’s Soap (perfect!) for years and like it a lot. My 14 year-old little dog, Daisy, is having issues with anxiety and what I think may be mini-seizures. It seems so unfair that aging happens so fast for our pets.

    We adopted a new kitten a few months ago and named him Henry. That quickly morphed into “Goober.” He’s such a Goob! Does Ivy have nicknames yet?

  5. I’ve had two cats in my life. With my first one, I would feed her in the morning. So guess who would wake me up earlier, and earlier, and earlier, and earlier… you can see where this is going. I learned my lesson! With my second cat, I would feed him in the afternoon – no 4 AM wake up nudges! I don’t know if that is doable for you, but something to think about. Those cats – they are smart!

  6. Ivy looks asleep, but she could still be listening with those upright ears! We’ve been to two pet rescue shelters in the past two weeks looking at young cats, in search of a pal for Calvin. We haven’t found the right one yet. We will know when we see her or him. It’s a big job to find a cat who will fit in as well as Ivy has at your place. We’ve had lots of rain here and now it has gotten very cold. When we drove to the pet shelter this afternoon we enjoyed the colors because of the surprises — the sky was gray and most trees have lost their leaves but there were some bright spots of orange here and there. One little tree stood out just like a candle burning. I like the somber feel of this time of year.

  7. I love hearing about Ivy and Charlie and their doings. On the one hand it’s somewhat of a substitute for having a dog and on the other hand it brings up the grief of losing my Tavi. The geriatric cats here aren’t much entertainment. They eat, sleep, look out the window and growl at each other! The older one, Rhoda, is affectionate, though. Whenever my grandsons and I sit on the couch to read she comes up and wants to snuggle into my lap. And when I sit down to use the computer the younger one, Tuula, sits on the foot stool next to me and wants to be petted. She’ll reach out her paw and snag my pants if I don’t keep petting her head. Makes it hard to type!

    I’m so glad Charlie is doing a little better. Hopefully that will continue, especially with the scented candles gone. Look for some unscented ones or some of those that have little light bulbs in them. I have a few of those. They are alright and safe with the boys here, but I don’t like them nearly a much as actual wax candles that you light. I don’t do scented, though and I use beeswax or soy ones whenever I can get them at a good price.

    It’s great that your management is taking care of the property better. Also, that you are connecting with some of the other folks who live there. I think we all need that stimulation–but on our own schedules for those of us who love our privacy and solitude.

    Snowed here last night. Not much, but some stuck. I guess I have to accept that Winter is actually here, much as I hate to!

    Give some pats to the little ones and hugs to you, Brenda. Have a peaceful evening.

  8. You may consider heating pads for Charlie & Ivy, tucked under their blanket, pet bed or (in Ivy’s case) under the first layer of folded quilt. My 11 yr. old kitty, Tiger Lily, loves the warmth. My heating pad automatically shuts off every 2 hours for safety. To corral those plastic litter bags, I stuff them into an empty Kleenex box and put the small box on the closet shelf. You can stuff a lot of bags into those tissue boxes!

  9. My four legged alarm clocks haven’t gotten accustomed to new time. They try to get breakfast and hour early. I love them to pieces.
    FYI From 2-7 months, cats gain about a pound a month.

  10. Snowed here during the night, we have an inch or two, on the ground. But the wind is blowing, so that makes it really cold walking , so gotta wear a hood and mittens, to walk even a short way. More snow is on the way, this afternoon. I already am ready for spring, and winter hasn’t even really begun…Love the picture of Ivy on the quilts, and I LOVE your quilts. They sure do make your home so warm and cozy. Do you still make them?? I can just see Ivy getting into your scraps, or squares that have been already cut, and hiding them all over. Glad to hear Charlie is on the mend. Would not have thought about the candles, hope that does the trick. Have a nice cozy weekend. Love to all 3 of you…

  11. Brenda,

    I love Ivy stories and a favorite picture is when she is snuggled on your quilts (I’m jealous as I love quilts), but you know Charlie has my heart and I always breathe a little easier when I know he’s feeling better.


    1. Hi, Just a caution about the plastic bags, just like a small child, she might suffocate if she wraps it around herself or gets into it as she’s playing. I’m sure you don’t let her get at them when you leave your cozy home. Loving your stories. Barb

  12. My little duplex is so well insulated that my electric bills are really good!! I hope yours get better. Happy to hear they are finally doing some maintenance there. Oh that Ivy she is a wild one but so cute. I hope Charlie feels better. I know candles and anything scented make me cough and my nose run so maybe it will help Charlie! Hugs!

  13. It’s cold here and we got some snow last night…yuk!
    Funny how Ivy honed in on that curtain tie–no need to purchase toys I guess.
    I am glad Charlie seems better, poor little guy!
    Have a cozy weekend!

  14. Taking a walk in the sunshine and talking to people instead of staying home, is great for your spirit and soul!
    It finally stopped raining so I need to rake my front and back lawn b4 that weather comes here!?

    1. The poor maintenance men were in the office saying their shed was awful cold. I gave a Duraflame stove like mine to a maintenance man once for the shed, but he took it with him. So I told them to come get my other one. As long as I have heat, I don’t need it. Yes, I find that I’m getting out more.

  15. Adorable pictures and I hope your utility bills will drop! Be careful with those plastic bags as I don’t want Ivy to strangle her little self or decide to start chewing on that plastic. Atlanta is going to get freezing weather tonight too so I think it will be a nice weekend to snuggle with Molly. Enjoy your weekend!

    Carol and Molly

    1. Hahaha ,,,, not so innocent, BUT truly a funny & sweet kitty! Everyone loves ❤ your “littles” Brenda. Very cold (❄ snow! ❄) here in Chicago,,,,, brrr. Our joints know. My fingers & knees are hurting. Gotta prepare for a long winter. Let’s all cozy-up with our sweeties! Glad to read Charlie is a bit better. Eventually Ivy will keep her distance! Well, maybe. ? Enjoy the weekend Brenda.

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