1/2 Way Through Winter

By: JanesVacation , 3:01 PM GMT on January 16, 2010

So, some good things are occurring for us in the Midwest. We have reached and passed the midpoint of winter and here we have reached and passed the day with the lowest average high temperatures of the year.

Melting taking place right now. It is our warmest day of 2010 with temperatures already reaching 41F at 9A.M. The ground at our house still has a thick layer of icy snow cover. We are expecting the rain to melt quite a bit of it today. This is the weather system coming across from California. It is more appreciated here than it was along the California coast.

After today, we are back to winter. More snow, cold and winter driving conditions to head our way starting tomorrow.

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23. shoreacres
2:30 AM GMT on February 04, 2010
Hi, Jane,

Just saw the note about keyboarding - left this link to Type Down at Karen's, too. It's a really fun game (says the old lady who likes to play it!)
Member Since: October 4, 2004 Posts: 205 Comments: 15290
22. surfmom
1:55 AM GMT on February 04, 2010
Quoting SBKaren:
Surf - I appreciate the link to Chinaberry - as I buy books all throughout the year. I probably spend upwards of $1000 on books for our dedication program. I use various lists - recommendations from the ALA - just books I hear about - but I like as many sources as possible! Thanks! It's saved in my bookmarks!


Ohh I am So glad you caught that - truly the best book reviews ever... and the woman (we chatted when she first started the company) a wonderful, wonderful soul!!

You got FOX!!! I find them to be so beautiful....with the snow, perhaps you'll be able to find their tracks.

JoeAlaska has a blog that has lots of Fox Pics.

Member Since: July 18, 2007 Posts: 30 Comments: 26536
21. SBKaren
11:04 PM GMT on February 01, 2010
Hi Jane!

We have red foxes on the Seal Beach Naval Weapons Station - it's also a Wildlife Refuge.

We also see pre-school age children. We do house a pre-school on our campus, but it's not those children that come, but the students that are in the developmental K. They love coming to computer lab, and the sooner we teach them how to use the mouse and keyboard, the better prepared they are by the time I teach them research. We can get on with the typing and formatting quickly!

Do you have a keyboarding program? We use PAWS. Now, our 5th graders are expected to be proficient when they leave. With all the additional academic classes at the middle school level, a lot of kids don't take a keyboarding class again until 8th grade. So we need to be sure they are proficient when they leave!

My 5th grade students are beginning to type up their notes. I have them format a document, and learn how to save in a specific folder. I can always tell the kids that are typers, as they are the first to finish. If I see a kid using one or two fingers, I nag them to get both hands on the home row keys! LOL

Glad you enjoyed the storm...we should be sending you another one end of this week or next!
Member Since: February 21, 2005 Posts: 201 Comments: 15140
20. sandiquiz
7:43 AM GMT on February 01, 2010


Dear Jane - Wishing you a very happy and peaceful month :))

Yes - we have coots, but also moorhens, which are similar. The moorhens have red marks on their skulls, whereas coots have white marks on theirs....leading to the simile, 'as bald as a coot' :)
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 343 Comments: 31296
19. shoreacres
2:19 AM GMT on February 01, 2010
Jane,

I'm thrilled for you that you got to see the fox, and the buffleheads are just darling. Isn't it fun to see something different? I saw a hooded merganser the other week, and didn't have a clue. Last year we had some loons here, too - very unusual, I think. I try to remember to call the Audubon society when I see something really strange, but I just didn't.

We have more coots this year than I've ever seen. Sandi has them, too. Do you? They're the ones that are black, guinea shaped and have white bills. They're funny little birds - not graceful at all.

I just heard that we're in for more rain this week. I'm beginning to get a little nervous about all this - there's been far too much bad weather and I haven't gotten nearly enough work hours in. We'll see how it goes - if the wind doesn't blow I have a shed to work under for one job, but if there's a north wind, forget it! It's as wet in the shed as out.

Have a great week at work. I have a wonderful dinosaur site to share with you but I need to get all the links lined up - I just found it on another blog tonight. It's really cool!
Member Since: October 4, 2004 Posts: 205 Comments: 15290
18. sandiquiz
10:23 AM GMT on January 31, 2010
Happy Sunday morning to you...
I love the Garfield coffee image .. it is great!!

The fox you saw is just like the foxes we have here. I saw one in my garden several times many years ago, but since they built houses on the fields opposite my house, I haven't seen it again.

Hope it soon warms up.. this winter does seem to be going on so long, and so severe. We were covered in ice again thsi morning, and the wind chill today is supposedly minus 4.... brrr!!
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 343 Comments: 31296
17. JanesVacation
1:31 PM GMT on January 29, 2010
10F this morning. It is a cold, winter day. The pine trees are dusted with a light coat of snow from the snow showers overnight. We saw a red fox at our house yesterday morning. I will be watching to see if it comes back today. I have only seen a fox 2 times before in the 15 years we have lived here. It was surprising to see trotting around our back yard. I ran for the camera, but it was far into the woods when I returned.
This is what it looked like (my picture didn't turn out - it was too far away.)
Member Since: June 21, 2008 Posts: 298 Comments: 2007
16. JanesVacation
12:59 PM GMT on January 27, 2010


Saw these ducks napping in the cold water of Lake Michigan yesterday. I had never seen them before and I had to come home and look them up online. They are called Bufflehead and spend their summers in Canada and their winters in the U.S. They look like duck shaped penguins. Very small and very cute!
Member Since: June 21, 2008 Posts: 298 Comments: 2007
15. JanesVacation
12:47 PM GMT on January 27, 2010
Windy and cold this morning. The dry weather is over. 17 today and a wind chill of 4F right now.

Lots of children coming to the library and computer lab this morning. I have the younger groups today. I surprise people when I tell them that the 4 year old pre-school groups come for computer class. They learn to open programs and manipulate the mouse. They also type their own names using the keyboard. I remember when kindergartners had nap time and now 4 year olds are having computer class. I happen to believe our education system is making good progress!
Member Since: June 21, 2008 Posts: 298 Comments: 2007
14. JanesVacation
2:09 PM GMT on January 24, 2010
Watching the rain come down out the window this morning. It is grey and rainy and mild (41F).

I need to get groceries today after taking yesterday off to go to a Bridal Show. It was a fun day with a friend, but now it is time to prepare for the week ahead.

Looks like the groceries (and myself) will get wet. Although a break in the action is predicted. It is better than going to the store in the snow. The carts will be more cooperative in a wet parking lot.
Member Since: June 21, 2008 Posts: 298 Comments: 2007
13. sandiquiz
8:00 AM GMT on January 22, 2010
Quoting JanesVacation:

I head to work at noon on Thursday and Friday. It gives me a great opportunity to do a few errands and blog with my WU friends on these mornings.



I would have loved to have started school at noon... I would have been able to have a lie in!
For 37 years I worked full time, usually leaving home before 7am, as I always lived at least 20 miles from the school.
I still find myself waking up just after 6am.... but it means I can do what I like for the first two/three hours!!
Enjoy your 'Free Friday' morning!!
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 343 Comments: 31296
12. JanesVacation
1:48 PM GMT on January 21, 2010
Cloudy and 32F continues again today. I heard yesterday that we have hit the average low temperature for the winter. So, there is no place to go but up. The days are also longer. It was "kind of" light this morning at 7:30AM.

I head to work at noon on Thursday and Friday. It gives me a great opportunity to do a few errands and blog with my WU friends on these mornings.
Member Since: June 21, 2008 Posts: 298 Comments: 2007
11. JanesVacation
12:42 PM GMT on January 20, 2010
Calm weather continues again today. Clouds and temperatures around 32F each day with no snow. Melting hasn't really taken place. I would say we still have 6-8 inches of snow covering the ground.

We hear coastal California is a "mess". Rain and tornadoes are causing misery for residents. It sounds like a January to forget for those residents.
Member Since: June 21, 2008 Posts: 298 Comments: 2007
10. SBKaren
3:37 PM GMT on January 18, 2010
Well, I didn't need that nudge - blame it on a wet morning and time at the computer!

John Newbery Medal for most outstanding contribution to children’s literature
When You Reach Me,” written by Rebecca Stead, is the 2010 Newbery Medal winner. The book is published by Wendy Lamb Books, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books.

Four Newbery Honor Books also were named: “Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice” by Phillip Hoose and published by Melanie Kroupa Books/Farrar Straus Giroux, an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group; “The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate” by Jacqueline Kelly and published by Henry Holt and Company; “Where the Mountain Meets the Moon” by Grace Lin and published by Little, Brown and Company Books for Young Readers; and “The Mostly True Adventures of Homer P. Figg” by Rodman Philbrick and published by The Blue Sky Press, An Imprint of Scholastic Inc.

Randolph Caldecott Medal for most distinguished American picture book for children
The Lion & the Mouse,” illustrated and written by Jerry Pinkney, is the 2010 Caldecott Medal winner. The book was published by Little, Brown and Company Books for Young Readers.

Two Caldecott Honor Books also were named: “All the World,” illustrated by Marla Frazee, written by Liz Garton Scanlon and published by Beach Lane Books; and “Red Sings from Treetops: A Year in Colors,” illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski, written by Joyce Sidman and published by Houghton Mifflin Books for Children, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
Member Since: February 21, 2005 Posts: 201 Comments: 15140
9. SBKaren
3:31 PM GMT on January 18, 2010
Surf - I appreciate the link to Chinaberry - as I buy books all throughout the year. I probably spend upwards of $1000 on books for our dedication program. I use various lists - recommendations from the ALA - just books I hear about - but I like as many sources as possible! Thanks! It's saved in my bookmarks!
Member Since: February 21, 2005 Posts: 201 Comments: 15140
8. surfmom
2:40 PM GMT on January 18, 2010
VICTORY GREETS THE MORNING
(actually Victory's thinking "got carrot?")

Member Since: July 18, 2007 Posts: 30 Comments: 26536
7. ronni9
3:10 AM GMT on January 18, 2010
This is grate
something new


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R9
Member Since: December 3, 2007 Posts: 6 Comments: 852
6. surfmom
1:00 PM GMT on January 17, 2010
This is fun - I never thought of waiting to learn about these book writing & illustrated awards

Goodness knows the number of Caldecott & Newberry books I have safely tucked away in storage for the next generation of readers in our family. The books do hold up (story wise) - it was fun reading and sharing books I loved as a child with my boys.

Jane, I may have missed it - did you catch my CHINABERRY SUGGESTION? Below is the link, I always get her paper catalog - which I think displays and reads much better then the website......I still read her children book reviews like a magazine - very enjoyable - even though my kids are all grown. If you call the 800 number - they'll send a catalog.

Have to say I can't recommend her enough - I give all "new mommy's" and "reading mommy's" my finished catalogs

Link
Member Since: July 18, 2007 Posts: 30 Comments: 26536
5. sandiquiz
10:20 AM GMT on January 17, 2010
Hi Jane,
Just stopping by to wish you a happy Sunday and to leave you a harbinger of Spring.

Warmer days should be coming soon....
Snowdrops...
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 343 Comments: 31296
4. SBKaren
10:15 PM GMT on January 16, 2010
Funny - I came here and wondered where my post went, and then I realized I did it on FB!

Shores - the Caldecott has been around since 1938 - it's given to a Children's picture book deemed as having the best illustrations.

The Newbery Award - also around for a while - since 1922 - is given to the best Chapter Book. Those are simple terms...but terms I use with the kids so they will understand. Often our teachers will require the students to read a Newbery Award or Honor author.

Jane - I guess I can try to remember myself...but I'd still like a nudge if you remember!
Member Since: February 21, 2005 Posts: 201 Comments: 15140
3. shoreacres
3:07 PM GMT on January 16, 2010
Good morning, Jane,

Sounds like you have a great weekend ahead of you. And a three-day weekend at that - I had to stop and ponder for a while before I remembered what holiday it was. I have a hard time getting my mind around holidays that have been established since I reached adulthood. They just aren't on my internal calendar!

When I read "awards day" the first thing that came to mind was those film or theatre or whatever awards that are a couple weeks down the road. How nice that there's someone in the world giving awards for books!

I've got my reading for the rest of the month lined up. I joined a Japanese Literature reading challenge on a book blogger's site, and promptly did nothing about it but order the books. Now, there are two weeks left before the end of the challenge - Jan 31 - so I'd best get cracking. I'm really eager to read them - all three are about the Yakuza, the Japanese mafia. The one I'll review for the challenge is Yakuza Moon, a memoir by one of the crime bosses' daughters.
I do like the true crime genre more than mysteries.

Anyhow, new year, new projects. Enjoy your fine winter weather and your family time!
Member Since: October 4, 2004 Posts: 205 Comments: 15290
2. seflagamma
3:04 PM GMT on January 16, 2010
"The Lion and the Mouse" has always been one of my favorate stories also.
Member Since: August 29, 2005 Posts: 313 Comments: 41174
1. seflagamma
3:04 PM GMT on January 16, 2010
Good morning Jane,

sounds like a good weekend.
congrats on getting the canoe carrier to go with your canoe.

I do not think I would be brave enough to tackle upholster two chairs... I've done some small projects and simlier ones like cushions but nothing like a chair.

Glad you can get out and about again.

enjoy your 3 day weekend.

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Member Since: August 29, 2005 Posts: 313 Comments: 41174

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