We awoke to snow on Sunday. It must have been windy too as the wind blew snow up under our covered patio. These little bird tracks were made on top of our patio coffee table which is a couple feet from the bird feeder. I have had to bring in the hummingbird feeder each night and take it out each morning as the hummingbirds who insist on staying here year round need breakfast. It has gotten colder too, a few degrees below zero each day this week which is unusual for us.
Buddy doesn't mind the snow, enjoys burning around in it but due to him having hair and not fur the snow just sticks to him like crazy then he comes in the house shivering. I have to dry him off then tuck in him. Yes, he is super spoiled - that dog loves blankets.
It seems every year since we moved here we have gotten colder snowier winters. We have made a decision about next winter. Instead of going back to Europe in 2019 like we had first planned we will skip a year and take my stepson in 2020 instead. We will go somewhere warm next winter, just the two of us for a week to 10 days at far less cost. I love Europe but we miss getting away somewhere warm in the winter and my stepson will understand waiting one more year. I am not sure where we are going, somewhere in the Caribbean or Central or South America. We have enough points for two tickets to Europe but the fuel surcharges and fees make it so you still have to pay over $600 a ticket. Those points might be better spent to somewhere warm. I just looked up Guatamala City and it is only $77 in tax and fees per ticket as there are no fuel surcharges to that destination. I have always wanted to go to Guatemala, maybe even Nicaragua. The Caribbean was slammed last year with hurricanes so will have to wait and see on the rebuilding there before we make any decisions about going there.
Italy is all saved for. I tried several times yesterday to book train tickets....unfortunately their system must have been down as couldn't get them processed. Will try again today. For anyone wanting to go to Italy or France - if you are going to a major attraction try and prepurchase your tickets so you don't have stand in line. Eiffel Tower tickets go on sale March 1 for the timeframe we are going so I will be sure to buy them as soon as they go on sale instead of waiting in stupid lineups. The cost is the same either way. No need to buy costly skip the line tour tickets, just buy direct. One small bonus, our two stepsons are between 21 and 25 so their Eiffel Tower tickets cost half what hubby and my tickets cost (to the very top 25 Euro each for an adult, 12.50 Euro for each of them). You can go to the second platform for cheaper but I am pretty sure we will only go to Paris once so might as well go to the top. I have never really been that interested in Paris, much more interested in other parts of France but we had a free stopover so a couple of days in Paris was a great way for us to show the boys a bit more of the world.
Less than a week left in the month and we are on track for the grocery budget. I have been trying new recipes as are bored with our current menus. I want to find some more slow cooker recipes though, love putting things on to cook in the morning and just letting it cook all day. Every time I try and eat down what is in the freezer I find a sale and fill it back up. I am a bit like a squirrel that way but really need to clean it out so effective immediately I will not be buying anything for the freezer that isn't to be used within 3 days.
Finally - a shout out to our Canadian Olympians. What an amazing showing, so many medals. Our town is especially proud as a local girl who grew up skiing and snowboarding on our Mt Washington won a gold medal this week in skiing the half-pipe, kudos to Cassie Sharpe. She certainly has not forgotten her hometown even though she had to move to Whistler for training. All week prior to her competing she had been skyping local elementary school classrooms, very cool for all those kids to watch her obtain a gold medal. Bars and restaurants all over town were filled to the brim with locals cheering her on during the competitions.
Stay warm everyone!