I’m not dreaming of a white Krismas…

… because I don’t have to dream. The not-quite-winter winter storm that was blowing across the country last week made it to Michigan over the weekend and left even those of us here in the southern region with at least a foot and a half of snow. This is the view from my front door Sunday morning:


Click to embiggen!

Today it’s snowing some more. The weird part is that it’s wasn’t, and still isn’t, the stereotypical big fluffy flakes you normally associate with lots of snow, but lots of wussy little flakes reminiscent of sugar substitute that sting your face and are generally annoying as hell. Normally you’ll get an inch or so out of those, but it just kept on coming and we ended up with a metric assload of the stuff. It’s also been bone bitingly cold as of late with temps not reaching far out of the teens, if at all, during the day. It feels more like February than December.

On the plus side it does feel like the Krismases of my youth. It’s entirely possible that I’m not remembering them clearly, but it seems we had snow like this a lot more often when I was a kid. Of course Pontiac is a bit further north than Ann Arbor so it’s possible we did get more snow, but the past decade or so it seems like we get dumped on with a foot or two in November that lasts three days tops and by Krismas we’re lucky if we have a dusting of snow. This feels like Krismas. Though ironically it may end up keeping us from visiting with my folks come Krismas Eve as the weather report guys are predicting freezing rain that day. Winter has come early to Michigan.

Updated: Just checked the weather and we’re under yet another winter weather advisory until 7PM tomorrow night:

… WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY NOW IN EFFECT UNTIL 7 PM EST WEDNESDAY…

THE WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY FOR SNOW… SLEET… AND FREEZING RAIN IS NOW IN EFFECT UNTIL 7 PM EST WEDNESDAY.

PERIODS OF SNOW ARE EXPECTED FROM LATE THIS MORNING THROUGH TONIGHT. SNOWFALL WILL BE MODERATE TO HEAVY AT TIMES… DROPPING VISIBILITIES TO LESS THAN ONE MILE. SNOW ACCUMULATIONS OF 2 TO 5 INCHES WILL BE POSSIBLE THROUGH EARLY WEDNESDAY MORNING. IN ADDITION… THE SNOW IS EXPECTED TO MIX WITH SLEET AND FREEZING RAIN LATE TONIGHT… BEFORE CHANGING OVER TO MOSTLY RAIN BY WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON.

A WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY MEANS THAT PERIODS OF SNOW… SLEET… OR FREEZING RAIN WILL CAUSE TRAVEL DIFFICULTIES. BE PREPARED FOR SLIPPERY ROADS AND LIMITED VISIBILITIES… AND USE CAUTION WHILE DRIVING.
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… ANOTHER WINTER STORM TAKES AIM AT SOUTHEAST MICHIGAN…

.A PROLONGED PERIOD OF UNFAVORABLE WEATHER CONDITIONS WILL OCCUR TODAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY AS A COMPLEX WINTER STORM TRACKS THROUGH THE UPPER MIDWEST. A WARM FRONT PRECEDING THE SYSTEM WILL SLOWLY LIFT ACROSS SOUTHEAST MICHIGAN TODAY AND TONIGHT… BRINGING WITH IT SEVERAL BANDS OF SNOW. THE PASSAGE OF THESE BANDS ACROSS THE AREA WILL PRODUCE PERIODS OF MODERATE TO HEAVY SNOWFALL… WITH ACCUMULATIONS GENERALLY RANGING FROM 4 TO 6 INCHES BY 700 AM WEDNESDAY MORNING.

THE MAIN SURFACE LOW IS THEN EXPECTED TO TRACK NORTHEAST THROUGH SOUTHERN LOWER MICHIGAN ON WEDNESDAY BRINGING A SECOND ROUND OF WINTER WEATHER TO THE REGION. BY THIS TIME… ENOUGH WARM AIR WILL HAVE SURGED NORTHWARD TO ALLOW SNOW TO MIX WITH SLEET AND FREEZING RAIN. THIS WINTRY MIX OF PRECIPITATION WILL MIX WITH RAIN TOWARDS THE OHIO BORDER. AREAS NEAR AND NORTH OF TRI CITIES WILL REMAIN PRIMARILY SNOW… AND THE POTENTIAL EXISTS FOR ADDITIONAL SNOW ACCUMULATIONS OF 6 INCHES FROM WEDNESDAY MORNING THROUGH WEDNESDAY EVENING. FOR LOCATIONS ALONG AND SOUTH OF I-69… ADDITIONAL SNOW ACCUMULATIONS ARE EXPECTED TO REMAIN LESS THAN 3 INCHES… WITH LIGHT TO MODERATE ICE ACCUMULATIONS. TRAVEL WILL BE DIFFICULT ACROSS THE REGION TODAY AND WEDNESDAY.

Jinkies!

Winter’s chill has arrived.

It’s not winter yet, that won’t officially happen until December 20th, but you could have fooled me over the past couple of days. After a surprisingly balmy Halloween and first week of November the jet stream has finally shifted and took us from a high of 64 this past Monday to a high of 44 the next day. The skies have gone grey and cloudy with occasional showers that have had a snowflake or two mixed in and today we’ve already hit our high of 40 degrees. Fortunately the furnace here in the townhouse works pretty well and the place seems decently insulated enough considering its age. For the rest of the week the best we’re hoping for is a warm up to 53 degrees by Friday, but there’s more chances of snow as we go along.

Shouldn’t be too much longer and we’ll get our first dusting of snow. Or perhaps it’ll be like last year and we’ll get dumped on in November and then have a relatively snow free Christmas. Either way it’s coming and it’ll be interesting to see how well Ann Arbor handles plowing the streets. Living in Canton was fantastic as the streets were cleared almost immediately whereas Hamburg, being the boonies, was lucky if the streets were cleared within a couple of days. I suspect this being Ann Arbor that it’ll get pretty quick attention.

In the meantime I need to decide how I’m going to use my Krismas lights. We’ve got a few windows with outlets nearby that I can stick some in and our “backyard”, such as it is, has a wooden fence around most of it that might be a good spot to put a string or two. I should probably do that before the snow starts flying in any serious quantity. I probably won’t, but I really should.

Weekend notes for a cold December morning.

So over the weekend, prior to heading up to my mother’s house, Anne, Courtney and I headed out to the local Kroger’s to get flu shots. This is the first year we’ve gotten shots and I’m hoping they work because Courtney and I caught the flu just prior to heading up to my parents for Christmas Eve last year and it made for a truly miserable holiday. Plus my arm started an annoying dull throb a couple of hours after the shot that got worse yesterday so the pain had better be worth it. Today it only hurts if I press on it so things are improving. Our timing was pretty good as the price on the shots dropped from $25 each to $10 on the day we went so it ended up costing a lot less than we expected it to. Hopefully that’s not because they think the vaccine isn’t working.

I was supposed to take Courtney out to do her Christmas shopping Saturday afternoon, but that got interrupted when the call for groceries came from my parents. With the snowstorm on the way we figured it was best to make the trip on Saturday rather than trying to do it Sunday or sometime during the week. Good thing too because we didn’t go anywhere yesterday. So I’ll be taking Courtney out something during this week to get her shopping in. The canceled school for her today so she got to sleep in whereas I still had to get up and come into work. On the plus side, the roads were clear enough and the traffic light enough that the trip in this morning went pretty smoothly. I was actually 15 minutes early and got to sit out in the hall with the rest of the team because the person that has the keys to the room was running late due to the weather. We didn’t get in until almost an hour after we normally open up in the morning.

Other than shoveling the drive which I mentioned yesterday, I spent the rest of the day playing World of Warcraft as the Feast of Winter Veil is underway and Call of Duty 4 as I’m almost at the top ranking with all the extra weapons unlocked. Watched a little TV, played some Tomb Raider Legend which I got from a family friend for some PC work I did for them recently, and basically lazing about as befits as snowy day. I’m sure you guys were much more productive than I was.

This is the sort of Christmas I remember…

Maybe it’s just a faulty memory, but most of the Christmases I remember from when I was a kid had a decent snowfall compared to those of the past few years. So it brought back some fond memories when we woke up this morning to find that it had snowed quite a bit during the evening hours. Here it is four days before winter officially begins and we’ve got a good half a foot or so of snow in the yard. Here’s a couple of pics:


Click to embiggen!

That’s my poor, old, beat up, Grand Prix sitting under that mound of snow. Here’s a couple of more I thought came out well:


Click to embiggen!

We made a mad dash up to Momma’s house yesterday in order to take care of some grocery shopping they needed done and the storm was kicking in just about the time we got home so it’s a good thing we did it yesterday. Now I just have to get up the gumption to go out there and shovel some of that off the main driveway which, as you can see in at least one of the above pictures, is quite lengthy. Fortunately I’ll have some help so it shouldn’t take too long.