Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Surviving Winter -- Minnesota Style

The thermometer is going sub-zero and will stay there for quite a while.  Waldo, my cat, looks at me when I open the door, like I should be able to bring back warm weather and green grass.  Sorry—no can do.  He’s even more disgusted if there is snow outside.

It’s not only Minnesota this latest cold snap—the whole country is going to suffer.  Is it any wonder that I love to write about warmer climates when I pick a location to write about?  My debut novel, Southern Comforts, is set in Savannah.  And I am working on the second book set in the same place, right now.

Although Georgia may occasionally have cold and ice, it is nothing like where I live.  It is nice to dream about Savannah’s steamy summer, while throwing more logs on my fire.  Yes--that is a glass of Prosecco in front of the fire!


Winter Carnival Ice Castle
Of course, here in Minnesota we flaunt the snow and cold.  There’s Winter Carnival and Ice Castles.  The Ice Castles are amazing.  Some are formed by blocks of ice cut from nearby lakes, others are formed by sprayed water—but all are beautiful.  Love that they have added LED lights and create light shows with the ice. 
Eden Prairie Ice Castle
Rice Park Ice Sculpture
Mall of America Ice Castle


What do you do where you live to get you through the long days of winter?

  

32 comments:

Mary Preston said...

I'm sweltering in the summer heat right now. Winter seems like such a distant memory.

Nan Dixon said...

Oh my - It is 9 below here this morning and I am hearing that up north is 23 below zero. Sweltering seems like a dream! Thanks for stopping by Mary!

Kristin Noel Fischer said...

Hi Nan, I'm waving from Texas where it's 37 right now and I'm sitting at my desk, wearing my uggs. I've got my portable heater blasting, and I'm still cold. I couldn't do Minnesota, but the ice sculptures are beautiful!

Congratulations on your new book!

Colleen C. said...

I have not seen snow in years... we have had some nice weather so far this season... a bit of rain which I like...

Nan Dixon said...

Kristin - 37??? A massive heat wave. The ice castles would melt! Thanks for stopping!

Nan Dixon said...

Oh Colleen - no snow for years. Rain is a disaster during the winter in Minnesota. And when it gets cold - we get that horrible black ice. There were 654 accidents around the state one day last week. Got to love the cold.

Miranda Liasson said...

Hi Nan! I love the ice sculpture pics. We're right ahead of you temp-wise in Cleveland. I think I'll curl up with Southern Comforts and dream of being in Savannah!!!

Nan Dixon said...

Ahh Miranda -
Are you celebrating the Ohio win? (I view this as a Big 10 win - since I matriculated from the University of Minnesota. Hard to root for Ohio State)
I hope you enjoy curling up in Savannah and it keeps you warm!
Thanks for stopping by.

Sandra Owens said...

Read and write and watch the snow fall. Only this year, so far there has been no snow!!! As I love snow, I'm not happy about that.

Nan Dixon said...

Sandra - I think Darcy or I could ship some snow to you. It is incredible to watch the snow fall - except with the hubby sick -- I been doing the shoveling and snow blowing. Hoping he gets well real soon!!
Thanks for stopping by!

Lola Karns said...

When I lived in Atlanta, my Midwest hubby and I used to laugh at everyone trying to drive up the hill in front of our house. I missed the snow. That was motivation to move back north, but I no longer laugh at winter in the South. We have snow plows in Minnesota.

Gail Hart said...

Nan - The ice castles are beautiful, but I'll stick with looking at them in pictures, thank you very much!

Gail, shivering at 43 in San Antonio

Nan Dixon said...

Lola,
Snowplows are required to survive up here! And maybe even snow blowers. Thanks for stopping by!

Nan Dixon said...

Gail - I think you need to get the full experience of walking through an Ice Castle in sub-zero temperatures. Just like I experienced the hot winds blowing through San Antonio during RWA!!
Come on up!

schalmers said...

Nan, I'm up in western Canada, and this past week has been miserable! Super cold, snow storms, then freezing rain. I love the pictures of the snow castles, and oddly, in the city of Edmonton, near where I live, we've only started embracing winter with festivals and the like. Mostly I huddle inside, look at plant magazines, write, craft, and wait for the snow to melt. But my four year old is a winter child, and she'd play in the snow all day if she could ... so I send her out with my husband. :)

Lark Howard said...

Nan, the snow castles are stunning! Here in Houston our weather is 40-45 and rainy but we expect highs in the low 60s at the end of the week. I grew up in the north and prefer our wimpy winters and not so short days. I do miss my annual ice-fishing trip to MN which isn't happening this year.

Nan Dixon said...

Ahh Shelly,
I do like to huddle. And I turn up the temp on my heated kitchen floors when it gets really cold. (Best thing I ever did when we remodeled the kitchen. I wish all the floors were heated!) But kids should be fearless? Right.
Thanks for stopping by.

Nan Dixon said...

Oh Lark - I have to say -- I've never done any ice fishing. This kids & hubby have. I would rather ski then fish. 60s are very wimpy indeed.
Thanks for stopping by!

sarah andre said...

I would hide inside, under a blanket, on the sofa, with a novel. But now I live in SW FL and it's still 80, sunny and I'm in a tank top, on my computer, out on the lanai, looking out at a lake (small pond.) Just sayin' :)

WOW! Those pics are BEAUTIFUL!

Laurie Cooper said...

Hi, Nan. I live in Florida, so it's nice and sunny here today. I have a friend who is heading home from Minnesota after visiting her mom and she was just commenting on the 80 degrees difference. Wow!

When I was a teen I competed in an annual National Baton Twirling competition held in St. Paul during the Winter Carnival. It was so much fun to visit and the ice sculptures were phenomenal. I'd love to take my family there to see it some time.

But I don't take the cold well for long. I snuggle down and hibernate.

Wishing you the BEST with your new book.

Laurie Cooper/Larissa Emerald

Amy said...

Those ice castles are lovely! I'm a Deep South girl, but for the past 16 years I've lived in New England. I used to be pretty miserable in winter here, but when I started writing it really helped! Now I consider the cold "good writing weather."

Nan Dixon said...

Ahh Sarah,
80 is just boring!! Okay - I wouldn't mind a little right now. This morning when I grabbed my tea mug it was cold - and that cupboard is never cold.
I do get a lot of reading done in the winter - under a throw--in front of the fire!
Thanks for stopping by!

Nan Dixon said...

Thank you Laurie/Larissa!
The ice sculptures are pretty amazing. I hope you didn't have twirl in the parade. You're fingers would have frozen!
Thanks for stopping by. Tell your friend its going to warm up in a couple of days and it will only be 50 to 60 degrees different!

Nan Dixon said...

Thanks for stopping Amy!
There was one year that MFW (my local chapter) had 5 people final in the Golden Heart. We blamed it on winter. No distractions from writing!
Stay warm and put out that next book that you taunted us with on the partial cover reveal.

Darcy said...

Stunning pics, Nan! And ZOMG, yes! I haz plenty of snow to contribute to the Sandy Snow Fund. ;)

I'm with Amy, for me, winter is my FAVORITE season for hunkering down by the fire with my trusty laptop. There's just something about the stillness of the world that's magic. Or…maybe the hypothermia is just making me poetically delusional.

Nan Dixon said...

Thanks for Stopping by Darcy dear,

Hypothermia or stillness -- I'll go with the stillness because of your lovely description.

I'm thinking maybe those kittens can help keep you warm. :-)





Leslie Lynch said...

Here I am, a day late, as usual! I LOVE the pics of the ice castles, Nan! What an example of creativity using unexpected materials! Winter has a beauty of its own - and there are no bugs to deal with!

Claire McEwen said...

I love those photos, Nan! But I'd never make it in Minnesota... I'm a California coastal gal, born and raised. I exist only in the fifty to eighty degree range!

Nan Dixon said...

Leslie -
I don't mind you being a day late! I feel like my life has been that way lately!!
It is awesome to see the ice castles all lit up to. I kind of wish my kids were younger - they were a good excuse to go see the castles and sculptures!
Thanks for stopping by.

Nan Dixon said...

Thanks for stopping, Claire!
50 degrees sounds good, since I spent about an hour shoveling snow this morning. I deemed it my exercise for the day. Cannot wait for hubby to feel better. This shoveling is hard on the lower back.
It was weird though, we finally warmed up to 20 degrees and it felt like a heatwave. So strange.

Anonymous said...

Oh, that fire picture is beautiful!

Just enjoying the Minnesota winter. Blessing all the days when the roads are good.

Love the winter carnival pix!

Greta

Kaelee said...

The pictures are beautiful. I live in Calgary Canada and we get lots of snow. The older I get the less I like it.

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