"On the plains of Oklahoma, with a windshield sunset in your eyes like a watercolor painted sky, you'd think heavens doors have opened."
Fly Over States

Friday, January 29, 2010

January 2010 Ice storm

Yesterday, we were pummeled with a mean ice storm that was devastating to the state, south of us.  We were fortunate that just as it hit the metro area, it started going to sleet - probably saved our powerlines and even then, we lost power for about an hour and a half.   It was very ugly. 

When I stepped outside, this morning, the backyard was solid ice.  It held up my weight but would crack 10 - 20 feet away.  Just slabs of ice!

The girls loved it:
They always look dingy in the snow.
It may be too soon to tell but I think we avoided major tree damage.
Maybe .75 of an inch was left on the cyclone fence.  It was considerably deeper in the yard, even where it didn't drift.
I set out birdseed and water under the eaves of the house.  The birds, even the nonground birds, hid on the ground beneath the Cedar outside my sewing room when the ice was so bad.   A papa Cardinal gets out there in the Cedars, most days, and looks so bright against the green.   Yesterday and today, he was puffed up like a rooster.  

During the ice storm, juncos and sparrows were flying onto the patio and pressing up against the back door.  I got a kick out of that because my girls were peering out the window at them, clearly enjoying seeing them, closeup.  The birds had no idea that those big dogs were watching them just inches away - and the girls were being very quiet - clearly they knew they couldn't "get" them but were enjoying the closeup view.  

Here is the regular birdfeeding station - it took a lot of ice but you can see that it is more sheltered than in other ice pictures on the barn end of the yard:
I dunno, it was an ugly icestorm but I think this is beautiful:
Today, the snow is still coming down hard on top of yesterday's ice.
I have quite a few pictures of Pearl burying her head in the snow. 
Don't look at the muddy back step - I clean it every few days but when it is muddy, well, there is a good reason for the mat:
The power held, most of the time, so I decided to try my hand at an art quilt.  Husband gave me this pendant, years ago:

Unfortunately, last week the opposite side came loose and some of the stones fell out.  I decided the (mostly) straight lines on it would make it a good candidate for a art quilt attempt.  The first thing I did was make a sketch of it, using photoshop elements:

Then, I enlarged it and attempted to trace it onto wax paper for patterns but that didn't work out:

And why didn't it work out, you ask?  Well because WAX paper is NOT the same thing as FREEZER PAPER (which is what I needed) - duh.  And my freezer paper was out in the barn and there was an ice storm going on so I could not SEE the barn. 

I ended up making a paperpiecing pattern with it:
Part of the fun was picking out fabrics.  I had to go out to the barn in the snow (today) to find some:
I am such a fabricholic.

While I was on a tear, I decided to order a dyeing kit and some books so I could learn to dye my own fabric.  I should probably be looking for a job.  A PAYING job.

Here is my project, in progress:

So far, I have done the easy part.  When it comes time to put that circular part in, and put the pendant on a background, I suspect it won't be so much fun.  But at this point, it has been a GREAT project to keep me out of the ice. 

As a side note, last night at dusk, the ice storm slowed down.  We suddenly started seeing flashes of light in the backyard.  Lightning?  But no thunder.  Husband kept insisting it wasn't lightning.  I didn't say so, but I assumed he had gone completely around the bend.  What else could it be?  He'd go out front and then march back into the house to ask if I could still see "lightning" in the backyard.  Yes, I had.  Repeatedly. 

"You can't see it in the front,"  he insisted, "I am worried it is a transformer or something electrical."

"Poor insane creature," I thought. 

So, finally, I shrugged on my coat and went out back.  Sure enough, I began regularly seeing the flashes.  On the patio. 

It was not a lightbulb.

It was not lightning. 

I got a bad feeling. 

Then, we lost power.  I came in and Husband was looking for candles.  I told him it wasn't lightning and I was afraid it was electrical.  So much for my smugness.   I sure didn't like being so skittish in the midst of an icestorm.  And the lights kept flashing even with the power out. 

I just froze, everytime they flashed.  Husband was standing there, in the dark, next to me.  And then...

"Birdcam," sez Husband.

BIRDCAM!!  I'd set the frickin' birdcam up on time lapse on the patio!  As soon as dusk hit, it started flashing whenever it took a picture.  Have I mentioned I am a dork?

I need to go check to see if I caught anything worth the scare. 

Happy Quilting,

Penny, Evelyn and Pearl


Miriam said...

Amazing ice and snow photographs! The girls seem to be really enjoying the snow!
I love the colours in your pendant. Those blue and green shades are gorgeous!
Good luck with the fabric dyeing.

Anonymous said...

I hope you and yours continue to stay safe in the storm.


Thearica said...

I was thinking that it would be so wierd to have lightning during an ice storm but with our weather these days, I wouldnt put anything past anything...

and then I chuckled when I read what it actually was....the same thing happened to us..

Butchs 2nd cousin hunts our land and he set a camera up in the back corner of the property...I was awakened one night to bouts of light and I thought someone was messing around the house with a flashlight...I lay frozen in bed because I didnt want to get up...I finally got Butch awake and when he saw it, he got up to investigate.

he saw it coming from the back corner of the field and just said that someone most likely was hunting!! After midnight!! and on our property to boot! Nothing scares him!

Well I was telling Lance, (the cousin) about it and he told me about his camera...I was so relieved!

Thearica said...

And your art quilt is going to be awesome!!

Stephanie D. said...

ROFLMAO!! That is the funniest thing I've heard in a LONG time! Life with you must be a hoot!

I've never seen a dog love the snow like your Pearl! She just revels in it, doesn't she?

And the ice photos are wonderful. I was wondering how you all had fared back there. In my haste to get packed and over here before the roads got too bad, I forgot my blood pressure medicine, and forgot to bring something to wear during the day tomorrow, before I need my scrubs at night, but by golly, I remembered the mini-computer and the camera! Priorities, baby!

Unfortunately, I didn't have any hand work ready to bring with me, so no sewing this weekend.

What a flash of inspiration to make an art quilt from that pendant! And it's turning out beautifully.

OklaTwister said...

Penny, love the art quilt from the pendant; just a fabulous idea! The circle in the middle shouldn't be bad at all. Just make it as a square like the rest, then do the Eleanor Burns trick using muslin or interfacing (not fusible) and sew it as a circle, clip a spot in the muslin, turn inside out and press. Then applique it on to the pendant.
Love the birdcam story!
OklaTwister, Carol

Bonnie said...

I know I'm nuts but I just love ice storms. They are just so pretty. As long as I am home safe. LOL