Well, we are full into January now, with cold days here in the north and enough white stuff on the ground that Rick is into cross country ski mode. I'm into nesting mode! Santas, out. Snowfolk, in.
I leave much of Christmas up for a rather long while (or at least those parts that look as much winter as Christmas), but I've started taking down some of the obvious things, I did decide to leave the mantel in place, though the Jeanie-meets-Santa photo is down and I've been adding some snowfolk to that scene.
Things like wrapping paper are finally being put away. We still have family Christmas with the Toddlers to schedule, but most can get put to rest.
We spent New Year's Eve with our "safe" friends, doing our annual Christmas Song exchange. This year, we picked from four songs and the other couple had to guess. We received gifts for "We Need a Little Christmas" and Mark and Jan received gifts from "The Most Fattening Time of the Year," a Bob Rivers spoof. After dinner and presents, we watched the new year come in as Mark and Jan's neighbors (they're in the country, so not too close!) had some wonderful fireworks.
Mostly we kept the door closed because it was awfully cold! But I had to get a good photo. Unfortunately, it's not that good!
A few days later we got our first real snow. I was happy to see my snow crew come by. They were paid in cash and cookies.
There has been a massive feeding frenzy at the bird feeder, delighting Lizzie.
Now that the snow is on the ground, they are here in force.
This little guy looks pretty puffed out!
I saw the ENT for my ears last week and while there mentioned my never-ending sinus infections. Since I have an appointment with an infectious disease doc in a few weeks, I wondered if pseudomonas, the bug I have colonized in my system, could also be in the sinuses, so he did a culture. Turns our that the answer to that question is yes and I also have MRSA there. That's pretty creepy and very antibiotic resistant. So, I'll be starting on one that hopefully works next week. (It's a compound antibiotic that they have to "make" at the apothecary, hence the delay.)
I was again reminded that these issues make me an extremely dicey case if I should get Covid. With omicron everywhere, I am laying really low. One of the sad things about this is that I am "giving up" my local grocery store. My recent visit was the last straw.
They have never really complied with Covid guidelines -- a bit at first, but those let up when the first wave eased. I started not feeling safe there, especially during surges. I'd already stopped shopping there except at odd times because of lack of plexi dividers and because none (yes, NONE) of the front-line employees were masked. On occasion I might see a mask on someone preparing food in the deli, but not the people cashiers or stock people who are out in the front where all the omicron-spreaders are encountering them.
The other night I needed something in a hurry and did go there and surprise! One checker was wearing a mask. I went to his line and thanked him for doing so, and told him I'd stopped shopping there because of their lack of Covid precautions. And he said -- "Well, I normally wouldn't wear a mask either, but my wife is sick and I thought I should."
He shouldn't have even been at work -- a first degree exposure. Well, she might just have the flu -- either way. Needless to say, I stepped back as far as I could and got out fast.
I'm done with them. There are other stores that do care and do a much better job. C'mon people. We can do this. Don't go out if you're sick and wear the mask even if you aren't. You may not care but for those who are high risk, we do and ask you help protect us as we would protect you. (And I know, I'm probably preaching to the converted, but I had to vent.)
Finally, the big tree is down. I was going to leave it up till the weekend after Twelfth Night but when I brushed by it and it started to tip, I realized it was telling me it was time to go. I caught it as it fell, propped it up with a chair and now... done. One down, ten to go.
So, once that's done, it looks like I'll be doing a lot of bird watching.
All things considered, it could be much worse!
Sharing with: Tuesday Turn About / Pink Saturday
I leave up wise men and star decorations after the Christmas decorations are put away, and my one snowman candle holder :) It helps make things look not so bare.
I'm sorry about your infection and hope they can get it cleared up quickly. I'm staying in mostly, too, except for weekly grocery trips (all workers and most customers are masked). I'm still masking but have switched to the N95s. I'm afraid we'll end up having to fight Covid19 from now on :( I miss lunches inside restaurants :(
Bird watching brings me joy :) It could be worse, you're right there, and there's much to be thankful for.
Yikes! Our stores are amazing with distancing, masks etc. We are in a modified lockdown so stores are only allowed 50% capacity.
Still I am doing online grocery shopping.
I hope you improve and feel better. Taking drugs can create so many other problems. We still pick out groceries up and that sure has been great. Take care and enjoy your snow and pretty snowy things!
One hates to be mean-spirited but that store needs to be boycotted by all its patrons. Are there no legal requirements for food handlers and store clerks to wear masks?
We have a feeder for goldfinches that's right outside the window where I work most of the time and I think it's probably 50/50 how much time I actually work and how much time I watch the finches, so I'm sure the birds can keep you occupied.
There are no mask mandates where I live and if you walked around my town, you wouldn't know that we are in the middle of a pandemic. It's disconcerting and I worry a lot about people who do have conditions that make getting COVID such a risk. I wish you good luck and good health and hope there is a store where you can shop with some degree of comfort!
I've taken down all our Christmas things, too, and, despite our distinct lack of snow here (ever!) I put up a few of my snow things. It somehow feels cooler than 74 degrees when you have a snowman on your front door.
I'm also back to spending a lot of time with birds. iNaturalist and the Birds of Texas Facebook group have taught me a lot.
we had to get some perishables yesterday. We stopped into a big grocery store near where my brother in law lives. It was deserted and they were positively militant about precautions. They insisted all purchases had to be paid with interact tap, paper bags had to be used and she wouldn't touch my lotto that needed to be checked. All staff are masked and gloved, carts are sprayed coming and going, lots of plexi shields.
I'm glad your year has mostly gotten off to a great start, though sorry about the health issues to deal with. As for the store... Those of us with reason to be concerned about our risk factor wouldn't be at quite so much risk if people would stop doing things like that; it's everyone deciding we no longer need to worry, not bothering with masks, coming in to work when people they've been near are sick, etc, that's the reason we're still dealing with this pandemic.
The mask situation is crazy. Here about half of the people are wearing one in some shops. I am always careful to have either 2 either a medical grade one, just to be safe. I don't want to catch covid and not to be able to go to university at best, being sick at worst.
Love the photos with the birds, they are so cute.
We didn't have many decorations this year, so it didn't take them too long to get down and pack away.
I don't blame you for being extra cautious regarding covid. We have fairly good restrictions at the moment and I haven't been in a shop without a mask since Covid began! Masks have been mandatory in Wales for quite some time.
Happy New Year!
You MUST be extra careful!! This could be an opportunity to paint, make a journal but , by all means, do not go out and "people". Have groceries delivered, The virus is getting most enthused about it's thrill seeking these days. We have become tired of it, defiant, and lax. Stay in and do your Jeanit thing! Stay well!
The birds at your feeder are charming -- like Lizzie, I find them quite entertaining. Was also amused by the idea of a Christmas song exchange, and glad to hear that you were able to celebrate NYE with friends
I am sorry, though, about your sinus infections (and hope that the antibiotics are effective). Not sure if this provides much comfort (or how much credence to give this story), but it's possible that having frequent colds/sinus infections may be COVID-protective (https://www.forbes.com/sites/roberthart/2022/01/10/common-cold-could-protect-against-covid-infection-study-suggests/?sh=3fe349691761)
Wishing you all the best in your quest for safe shopping. Around here, we've been in delivery/pick-up only mode since before Thanksgiving...
I am doing grocery pickup these days just to be as safe as possible. But our grocery store is masked -- everyone, even patrons. Our course, we have to, by mandate. However, it is still the case that every cashier is also behind plexiglass. It's the way things are here, everywhere as far as I can tell.
Yes, I agree with you. Stay away from that awful store. Anyway, I just love looking at your photos of the birds. So cute they are.
Here's hoping that new antibiotic takes care of your ear/sinus infection problems...As for the mask situation--I wouldn't go near that store either--what in the world is wrong with people???
At 78 and 82 yrs we are still isolating and only going out for groceries, med appts. while wearing masks and doing hand sanitizing and washing,,,
Hope your situation improves...hugs, Julierose
Sad that Michigan's population of jerks has demolished any effort at regulating mask wearing and other avoidable ways to spread disease. We see lots of people doing the right thing, but that's a choice they make, nothing the government would bother with.
Good luck getting well and staying healthy.
best... mae at maefood.blogspot.com
Love your feeder birds Jeanie. I am happy you were able to get out and have some fun with your friends. I am happy to sit and watch my birds out the windows, especially on a cold windy day. Mask wearing seems to be all over the place lately, some stores we see everyone wearing masks and then there are others where wearing a mask must be taboo. Hubby and I will wear our mask until these Covid case numbers go down, they are really high right now. Take care and stay safe. Have a great day and a happy new week!
A massive feeding frenzy at the birdfeeder may mean another deep snow is coming. Better bake some cookies just in case. 😊
Thanks for your comment on my blog. It's a hopeful thought, but somehow I think it is more complicated than that. 💙
Good grief, you must have been horrified when he said his wife is sick! All the this and do that going around, it is not surprising to see people not wearing masks, and going to work after exposure to a sick person. It isn't easy to remember there are other illnesses besides covid.
Uh.. so sorry to hear about your grocery store. Thankfully all employees in all our local stores wear masks behind pelxi glass. And even more thankfully 90% off the shoppers are also masked.
Hope the new antibiotics help you out. Stay safe and healthy.
Your snow looks pretty! My grocery store employees are required to wear masks. There are some shoppers that don't (I do). But lately I am using Instacart to shop and my food is delivered by a masked shopper.
Rick is crazy. LOL
Cashiers were the spreaders in my town...I don't know who teaches these kids anything, or whether anyone does. They tell them to wear masks, then have them working on adjacent machines so they're close to customers, let them run around the counter to scan things in carts, and let them keep on cutely touching one customer's hand after another as they return change/cards. The good news is, if you're masked and vaccinated and wash hands after contact, chances are you won't catch whatever virus they have.
There seems to be a consensus here that COVID is all over but the shouting, everyone who could die from it having already died. It's useful to remind us that the COVID Winter further inland isn't over yet--and people should still take responsibility for all the other minor cold-and-flu germs that could still kill someone at risk.
Enjoy the bird watching.
We have taken several steps back from people this month as the virus has been worse instead of better. The market closest to me has 6 employees out with COVID and I never did feel safe there. The only market that I have felt safe at is Trader Joe's. They one I go to has done a great job and all employees wear masks. I didn't shop there much before the pandemic, but not I am a committed shopper there. It is further to drive, but worth it. Take care, take your meds, and heal.
Jeanie, all of my decorations are down and packed away. I almost left the tree in the cottage to decorate for Valentines, but decided I wouldn’t. I love the seeing the snow, it is so rare here. Our stores have so many empty shelves, it is impossible to find simple things. Most employees do wear masks. Take care of yourself.
Good luck with your meds. My daughter was allergic to one she was getting and her left side of her face went numb. At first the hospital thought she was having a stoke, but ruled that out thank God. She still is not fully back to normal. Am so worried and upset and am hoping she gets out of the hospital soon. On another note, I only go grocery shopping every 5 to 6 weeks. I make my meals plans and shop only for those items. Janice
You are preaching to the converted in me, and we have been ultra careful this Christmas in the UK because we have international travel in the mix, and I can't complicate it with Covid! Having been apart for 2 years we have all been happy staying in! I hope you get your toddler's Christmas catch-up, I'm sure it's a lovely one!
Happy nesting and Cross country skiing!
It's so hard to believe how folks are thumbing their noses and mouths to Covid! So selfish. It really makes me mad! Our grocery employees mostly wear masks, but not so with the customers. Yesterday I observed maybe 50% wearing a mask! I'm so sorry you have to isolate yourself. Feel better soon. If only folks thought of others!
I enjoy seeing how you leave the wintery decor up.
I'm glad to have Christmas down (except for my winter tree). I feel like I can move into the new year. But I like how you leave out wintery things on your mantel and elsewhere. But it is scary to hear you have some MSRA in your sinuses. I hope your antibiotic works. And I know covid is really scary right now. I'm really fussy about where I go and when I go out, but you have to go to the grocery store. I hope you enjoy watching the birds and staying warm. It's the best way to spend these cold January days, isn't it? Hugs-Erika
Lizzie is focused.
I've been able to get out cross country skiing once thus far, but not as long as I'd like. My knee is stil giving me trouble.
Cash and cookies, awwww, how sweet of you!
Great shots of Lizzie and the birds.
Hope all turns out well, health-wise!
Same here with precautions - will "we" ever learn?! It´s not that difficult...
Uh-oh! My Dad always had the tree secured to the wall, so it sayed like forever, LOL.
To a good new year, right.
We are fortunate that masking and physical distancing are mandatory over here in our corner of the world.
Hope the new antibiotics help you out.
Stay safe and healthy.
Oh, for Goodness sake. Some people are just too stupid to understand the dangers. Sometimes I wish they'd catch Covid (many of them do, of course and then clog up hospital beds) and learn their lesson.
Like you I am seriously vulnerable with asthma and COPD, so I too take the greatest care.
Birdwatching is fun, another thing I do lots of.
I, too, am limiting my exposure as much as I can. My grocery shopping is aimed at off-peak hours. Almost all the customers I saw yesterday were masked and all the staff were. I didn't go to the Dunedin Art Fair last week-end (one of my favorites down here). My friend Kate called off her annual Florida visit - just too much to fear about the airport, not so much the actual plane trip. We really can't be too careful.
Our stores wonderful too..no one ..even shoppers would even think of no masks..Anywhere.Our cases are sky high and our health minister resigned yesterday.
Be careful..I did Google your condition..no time to be exposed.. minus 13 F today..
I'll be putting dear Christmas decorations in boxes.
Take care..Your tippy tree:):)
I love to watch the birds during cold, they are so pretty all puffed up! Hope you infection gets cleared up with the new antibiotic, sounds like a serious condition so you can't be to careful. We only go out if necessary, and usually just one of us. Hubs (he's quicker than I am, I'm still reading labels!) runs in for groceries masked up and sanitizing when leaving. The supermarket provides wipes to wipe down carts and most customers are masked and all employees mask-up. Otherwise we would revert back to ordering and delivery. Unfortunately, it looks like some strain of Covid will be with us for awhile. Like you I have to be careful, seems everytime I get sick I get pneumonia. Looking forward to spring when my sinus and allergies do better. Take care.......
Stay safe my friend.
I feel the same as you on the grocery stores, so much so that I am using pickup wherever possible. The only things I run into the store for is fresh veggies, everything else gets put on the online order for pickup. Colder weather means more time inside, and I have a couple of days to sew and stamp, so off to play!
Oh, Jeanie, I hope that antibiotic works quickly! And, I, too, have HAD IT with the non-mask wearers. There is no other word but selfish (pretty sure I just made some enemies here). Here in Florida it's like the wild west (so different from NJ where there's much more compliance). My condo building has required masks in common areas, but there are those who refuse. They'll get on the elevator with you (and I immediately step off). Interestingly, they're the same ones who won't keep their dogs on leashes, or walk them in designated areas. I just don't get it.
that is an amazing blue sky for January in Michigan - hope you stay warm and healthy
I would boycott that store too! There seems to be better news about Omicron though, a guy called John Campbell does a podcast about it on Youtube and a few days back he gave a very good illustration of how it is different from previous strains and what that means for the pandemic. (Also, it doesn't attack the lungs in the same way. I won't say I feel encouraged exactly but it's nice not to have such endless bad news about it). I've kept up the Christmas tree, but need to remove the ornaments, and, really the tree. I didn't think I was such a slave to tradition but it doesn't seem right to have it there after Jan 6th! :D How nice to have all the birds to watch. I have a feeder up but they seem endlessly suspicious of it. I think I need advice from an ornithologist about what I'm doing wrong!
Oh Jeanie, I'm sorry you're still having sinus issues. I hope you get the right care and treatment that is needed. Oh my, you got some workers out there working on your driveway. My son shovels the snow in our driveway, and I'm so thankful for that. I love that photo of Lizzie curiously looking out the window at the birds, so sweet. Sorry you have to go to another grocery store - is there one close to your home? I hope the man's wife is Ok and does not have the virus. I love that glass little snowman. And I love the fact that you keep your snowmen out for awhile longer. After all, they represent SNOW, and so many of us are having snow right now during this cold Winter. Oh my, you are something else decorating all those trees. I am curious whether you bring the trees down and decorate them every year, or are they already decorated and read to go? They look so beautiful in your house. I love to see them each year. : )
Jeanie, I agree with your every word about dreadful Covid that seems determined not to go away. I do not understand people not wearing masks - never did. I also do not understand people who are sick, think they couldn't have Covid, but will not be tested. It is very concerning. I have also seen people who I thought were caring people, seem only to care about themselves.
We are laying low, Mike goes to the store once a week and that is it.
Please do take care of yourself and I hope your new medicine will address your issues. Hug Lizzie for me!
Whoa, Jeanie, I hope your new drugs help you. That's scary enough without Covid. My daughter, sil, and new grandbaby all got Covid. The sil went back to work after one week (weak), the baby is on day 10, and my daughter tested negative 3X before a positive yesterday. She has also been sick for 10 days. Everyone's symptoms were different - from killer headache and body aches to baby's high temps and now croupy cough to my daughter's sore throat and total head congestion. There are at least 7 other family members who've gotten Covid since the new year, none of us together.
Love the location of the bird feeders.
I just don't get it on the masks. It's not like you are asking for a blood donation. I stopped going to the pharmacy I've been associated with for nearly twenty years because none of them were masking.
PS Hope you get your infection under control.
We are very fortunate, all of our stores do take great care, whether it be a larger supermarket to the local village shop...
I do hope the new drugs will help you.
Take care, and enjoy your week.
All the best Jan
I am in my own nesting mode :) Looks like your New Year’s Eve was a fun gathering of friends. How wonderful! Lizzie does look cute looking out at the birds. I have been very entertained with ours. So sorry to read about your sinus problem. I had never heard of this pseudomonas before. I hope you get relief quickly. We have stopped our grocery shopping for the time being and getting it delivered. Hopefully for a short spell as we both enjoy the shopping experience. Our numbers have jumped through the roof and hospitals are overwhelmed in our part of Virginia. We have had all our jabs and wanted to get our flu shot next week, but decided to hold off for a while. We are keeping our distance from people. Sounds like you and I are both doing a lot of birdwatching :) Good health to you Jeanie and do hope you feel better real soon.
If it isn’t one thing it is another . . .
I hope they get your infections
responding positive with different antibiotics.
Hold on to that tree . . .
we don’t want any of your precious ornaments to the ground.
Sorry about your non compliant grocery store.
I am very tired and concerned about all the don’t care vs care!
STAY WARM . . .
Sending prayers for you dear Jeannie…
Hope you can get your sinus infections under control.
Nesting at home during the cold winter months can be enjoyable by getting little projects done and such.
Next month I will turn seventy- nine and I am ridiculously healthy! Something's gotta hit me sooner or later, I guess! Hope your infection clears up quickly, Jeanie.
Here's hoping you get your compounded meds quickly and they do the trick. The birds are a great distraction for use as we hunker down- Rich's immune system is as low as can be. Going out in the world is an odd experience; its as though half of everybody is just over covid even if cooked is not yet over with us. Flies in the face of common sense. I've enjoyed your seasonal enthusiasm and all of the lovely decor!
Minneapolis and St Paul brought back their mask mandates recently. But even before that, a lot were wearing masks. And mask compliance is good here for the most part. Phil does all of our grocery shopping though so that is nice. I used to go to target but not anymore. Now I do car pick up which is really slick.
I am sorry to hear about your latest health challenges. My brother had MRSA. that is a nasty infection. I hope the compound does the trick. It’s tough to be under the weather and then add in the risks of omicron and it’s just bad all around. I get my booster next Wednesday so feel good about that. My last vaccine dose was in august so I worry about how protected I am.
I also kept the Christmas things for quite some time. Yesterday, I took them away and the room seems very empty now. But, enough is enough. A good idea though to change a few decorations to winter ones and not so christmasy.
Good idea that you skipped your local store. Unbelievable, how people behave.
Thanks for your comment, Jeanie! Yes, I wrote it.
Good that you have a snow crew. Cash and cookies definitely work.
Sadly, we have dropped businesses, deliveries, friends, even family (on facebook) because of non-compliance and the simple stupidity of not understanding how selfish behavior puts others in harm's way. A nice note---nicer than the words I just used, to your grocer will at least let them know it is affecting their business. Foolish choices made--- result in consequences. Luckily here in this part of Illinois we are pretty safe because of good leadership and mandates. One county away and I don't visit there anymore. Hugs, Sandi
I love seeing Lizzie, the bird watcher.
Lizzie is completely entertained from her perch. I love that! I am so sorry to hear about your MRSA infection. I hope you can tolerate the antibiotic well and knock it out!
I was surprised when I visited Ann Arbor that folks don't wear masks like they do here with the exception of campus. People do need to stay home when they're sick, and I'm hoping that the one silver lining to this madness is that people will stay home when sick until they're well. Do any of your grocery stores have curbside pick-up? That's what I do, and I'm saving a fortune because I'm not impulse buying!
How are you feeling?
I love all your snow folks. And speaking of snow, that is a lot. Hope you had fun in it and not all work. HAHA
I haven't been up to taking all of Christmas down, the Hallmark Tree is labor intensive to put up and take down since every Ornament has it's own Box. Most places aren't consistent with mitigation, which is why the Country is in a mess with this Pandemic, every place, every person, doing whatever. I think it will just have to burn thru the entire population, which for some of us, is high risk and scary. We're feeding our Wild Birds too, all year round but this time of year they appreciate it all the more. I like to see Snow in pixs, not in real life anymore, ever, I don't have to ever shovel Sunshine. Happy New Year, I like that you keep Winter Decorations up longer, I do too.
Stopping by again to follow you.
Looking forward to more fun blogging with you, Jeanie!
Have a great weekend ahead!
I hope you start to feel better with the antibiotics Jeanie! It is so scary today with people dying due to the virus. That is too bad your grocery store is so lax about their employees wearing masks. Luckily the stores we shop in still wear them.
How wonderful that your neighbors stop by and help with snow removal. I don't miss snow but I did love how neighbors pull together and help each other out like this!
the birds at the feeder, the five deer in the driveway, the lights in the windows, the companionship of blogging ... all lovely mid-January gifts
Good morning, dear Jeanie.. first of all, I love your term "safe" friends. We have them too. Also, I hope that doctor that you will figure out a way to get rid of that mean old infection!! Stay safe and have a good weekend.
I'm working on taking my tree down. It usually turns into a several day project:)
Hope you are feeling better.
Oh, Jeanie, I hear you loud and clear. So sorry about your ear infection and hope the meds work for it. Your tree looks about how I feel. It took me so long to put up the decorations and now they just had to come down in what seems like "right after time". I don't want to deal with a whole lot after this. I am trying to clean house as I go and then "boy-howdy" if it gets messed up again because I only have the desire to do it once. We are going to go back to ordering groceries on line again. Our stores have wear masks signs posted all over the front doors and windows, and the clerks do wear them, but I bet there are only 4 out of 10 customers that do, I just don't understand it and then the #%** Supreme Court wont make it a mandate! Just frosts me and it is so cold outside that I am frosted enough!!..Happy New Year, friend..xxoJudy
Jeanie, stay safe! I’m so sorry to hear about this complicated and complex sinus infection. You just can’t get sick with Omicron. I ventured out to the store last week for the first time in over a month. Most customers were masked, and all the checkers were, but I still felt vulnerable. I, like you, just can’t get sick. My system can’t fight back. This ruling by the Supreme Court is not going to help things. I just don’t get it.
My Christmas is all taken down, but the big items sit in the basement waiting for someone to come and help us get them in our crawl space. They may be in the family room for months because the kids are all out and about and I don’t want to risk getting sick from them. Do you think this will ever end?
Happy New Year. Stay well. Nesting is good.
P.S. I finished reading “The Lost Manuscript” which you had on your book list for 2021. What a delightful book. I loved it. I never would have found it if not for you. I checked it out from the library using their on-line app which allows me to read it on Kindle. I am doing that more and more with novels. Now to go look at your list so I can find another great read.
I'm sorry you're not feeling well Jeanie, but January is a great month to hibernate at home and enjoy your snow people! We are under a winter weather warning today and I'm hoping we don't see any white stuff! Take care...
I normally HATE seeing comment moderation, but it is good when I'm as far behind as I am visiting. My sincere apologies, but at least I know you will read and approve (hopefully) my comments.
Aldi is the same way. Scott shops there for me, but he is braver than I. They DO have the plexi, but no masks on some cashiers.
I suspect by now you have been to the doctor, so I'll see what is next on your schedule. Nice save on the tree, at least.
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