Week-long Welcomings from Moosylvania: February 13th

Welcome to The Moose Pond! The Welcomings posts give the Moose, old and new, a place to visit and share words about the weather, life, the world at large and the small parts of Moosylvania that we each inhabit.

Welcomings will be posted at the start of each week (usually Saturday night with a Sunday date). To find the posts, just bookmark this link and Voila! (which is Moose for “I found everyone!!”).

The format is simple: each day, the first moose to arrive on-line will post a comment welcoming the new day and complaining (or bragging!) about their weather. Or mentioning an interesting or thought provoking news item. Or simply checking in.

So … what’s going on in your part of Moosylvania?

NOTE: The comments page will split off after 20 or so left margin comments with the most recent comments on the current page. To see the older comments, scroll to the bottom of the page (right before “Leave A Reply”) and use the Pages Tool to view previous pages, shown here with 3 pages of comments available and Page 2 circled.



  1. Wednesday Meese. 14 here in Kingston going up to 43. Watching stories about beach protests in Puerto Rico makes me wish I was there

    Puerto Rico

  2. Good morning, meeses! Wednesday …

    It is 43 degrees in Madison with an expected daytime high of 46. We will get rain as a major winter snow storm moves through the lower Midwest.

    Biden is right to not trust Putin – he will say he is withdrawing the troops to placate those in his own country who may not want war and then not do anything, he may say he is withdrawing troops and then claim that the Ukrainian military attacked his troops as they were leaving and then launch a full scale attack, he may say he is withdrawing troops and actually do so. We shall see.

    I started this comment about an hour ago and then got caught in a sticky wicket trying to make a “quick change” for a client. Now I need to get back to the other things that I need to get done before the sun comes up.

    See all y’all later!

  3. Warm morning, if I was going in to the office, I wouldn’t even need a jacket. Super windy — moderate fire danger today & higher tomorrow. Wfh today, going to savor it.

  4. Good Wednesday morning, Moosekind! It’s 32 F. in Ashburn on a partly cloudy day. This morning I saw the full moon surrounded by a misty halo. Does that portend rain?

    Today Miss Pink Cheeks is 13 years old. She’s been behaving like a teenager for a year now, so we know what to expect. We’re hoping to visit after she’s home from school today.

    Another terrible night, so I rose at 5:30 after lying there awake for two hours. Bleargh!

    Not much news. Made blueberry muffins for breakfast, now enjoying coffee.

    Wishing a good day to all at the Pond.

  5. It’s 58 heading for mid 60s. It started very overcast but the sun’s trying to push its way through. I’m seeing blue patches and occasional sunshine itself. Yesterday we generated 10.4 KWHs and the m-t-d is just over 90. Apparently we’re not going to do the same today. But if we can at least get up to 7 we won’t be losing ground even if we aren’t gaining any. Rain moving in about sundown and stay through most of tomorrow. We shall see what we shall see.

    I’m feeling “poorly” – enough that I looked up more symptoms of shingles. If the grungy tummy isn’t IBS, pancreas, or something I ate. . . If the headache isn’t sinusitis. . . then I’ve actually had shingles for over a week before the muscle ache and rash on one side of my body showed up to start me looking at it. Which is actually a good thing since shingles generally runs about 3 weeks. If so, I’m half-way through it. My son came over last night and looked at it. He’s not a doctor of course but he’s had shingles attacks for years. The basic recommendation for the rash is something “drying” like Caladryl so, bless him, he went and got me some. I think it’s helping. (Thank Who or Whatever this rash doesn’t itch.) He thinks I’ve probably had mild shingles attacks before and just didn’t recognize them because of all the other things that cause my body to ache or break out.

    Speaking of my son, people just don’t think about food service and what it takes out of a person. He’s been running the “grab-n-go” pizza kiosk in one of the dorm buildings on campus by himself the last week or so. His usual morning shift staff has been out – family had COVID and now has pink-eye – and mostly he’s grateful he’s got a night crew and isn’t running 15-hour days. But when he’s alone, switching back and forth from pizza prep to boxing cooked pizzas to running the register when someone comes in to cleaning to office work he has to wash his hands at each interruption. To the extent that almost 20% of his day is spend washing his hands. Which are swollen and aching because of it. One more verse of “this ain’t right”.

    Aji’s chicken BentBeak (real name Mica), the one that was almost a pet and had almost as many lives as a cat, “took wing” yesterday afternoon. Aji knows our society, knows people will laugh at her for mourning a chicken. But Love is Love is Love.

    I’m moving slowly today – at least I know the problems with my hands aren’t shingles – and am so glad I’m retired. Anyway, off to Twitter. Bright the Day, Meeses. {{{HUGS}}}

    • I’m so sorry about your son’s difficulties, bfitz. Hope the crisis is soon over.

      And dear Goddess, shingles! Please tell us you’re seeing a doctor to make sure of it.

      And yes, I can understand losing a pet chicken. I once read about a chicken in France named Alphonse, who, because he was the only chicken in the family, “grew daily in grace and beauty.” He was more intelligent than the usual chicken. People and animals become very attached, so grief at their demise is entirely natural and fitting. I for one am not laughing at Aji.

  6. Good morning, meeses! Thursday that feels like Friday for some reason …

    It is 25 degrees in Madison with an expected daytime high of 19. Mostly cloudy skies are in the forecast. The next few days will be a roller coaster of temperatures including 50s on Sunday. Should be dry, though.

    I am enjoying watching Canada treat MAGAts the way they should be treated – as deplorable scumbuckets whose very existence is a blight on humanity and a danger to democracy. The right-wing, which has deployed Twitter as a weapon to promote autocracy and mayhem, is very upset that hacked information about who is contributing to trying to upend the rule of law in a foreign country is being shared online. Whoever hacked the white supremacy donor site – thank you; democracy dies when dark money (pretending to be a groundswell of grass roots support) attacks it. Just like the astroturfed TeaParty “movement” of 2010, these things are rarely spontaneous and almost always supportive of some rich people’s pet projects.

    tRump spamming his donor list and ticking off potential Republican midterm donors? Who could have predicted that? Hey, RNC, RSCC and RCCC, lie down with literal garbage people, wake up MAGAt infested.

    Early morning projects beckon. I was sad to see that the US Women’s Hockey team lost to Canada. Considering that we lost one of our best players to a broken leg in the first game, coming away with silver (and only losing by one) is not a terrible thing. Canada was clearly more motivated (and better coached in my opinion); they have been nurturing their anger for four years after their 2018 loss. Five former Wisconsin Badgers skate for Canada so it was difficult to root against them in any event.

    See all y’all later!

    • Thanks, Jan, enjoyed the cheery news about the Canadian view of the MAGAts and their disruption.

      Too bad, though, about the poor old American player that broke a leg. Better luck next time, but it is bitter. Who knows if there will even be a winter Olympics again?

  7. Good Thursday morning, Meese. Last night I saw the full silver moon—it was lovely—but this morning it was simply a misty white circle in the predawn sky. We’ll be getting rain late in the evening. We already have wind and 52 F. in Ashburn, going for a high of 65 F. This February weather has been schizophrenic!

    Y’all may be amused by comments from me in John Kelly’s column in the Washington Post this morning:


    He’s a good guy for printing bits of my polemic.

    Yesterday we journeyed out to visit the newly fledged 13-year-old. Thank GODDESS her parents finally got her orthodontia! Her teeth problems were the only thing spoiling her looks. She’s thankfully still more interested in reading about tribes of warring felines than she is in attracting the attention of some boy, but still, it’s good to take care of her massive overbite now.

    Braces and all, it was a joy to see her. We saw Mom too. Both she and Nora screeched like banshees when they caught sight of Dearly, whose black eyes, black chin, white surgical ear muff bound by a circlet of white surgical tape all around his head, and still red cross-stitch pattern on his forehead would frighten just about anyone. Luckily he’s going to the doctor today. He hasn’t been able to sleep or read because of this bandage.

    Anyway, we gave Nora a gift certificate for Barnes & Noble. She likes to meet her friends there and hang out. I think she has acquired a taste for coffee ice cream because of this: I found a mysterious used dish with traces of that substance the last time she stayed over. She wants to stay over with us again and spoke wistfully of a visit to London. Had to tell her poor old Grandpa is in no condition to travel, what with post-op, arthritis, and COPD.

    There’s a meeting today so I’d best hop to what I have to do! Wishing a good day to all at the Pond.

  8. Warm mo morning, I could have worn short sleeves but there’s a cold front working through, it’ll be 50 and dropping at 5. In the office today and tomorrow, sigh. Could be worse, it could be all 5 days.

  9. Our high of 58 was before dawn. Currently 38 and dropping – supposedly to bottom out at 13 just before dawn tomorrow – very overcast and still raining although it’s tapering off. Yesterday we got 5.4 KWHs and the m-t-d is 96 – we lost a little ground yesterday and unless the clouds clear off this afternoon we’re going to lose more today. sigh.

    The NP said I should come in for the shingles anti-viral in hopes of keeping the symptoms from getting worse. I hope that works because they are getting worse. The rash is spreading – and burning – and the headaches are getting strong enough Ibuprofen doesn’t make a dent. (Which is part of why I only got 2 hours of sleep last night.) She said she doesn’t have any openings but to come in between 9 and 12 and she’ll work me in. I’m planning on being there at 9 – at least if the rain stays light. Added complication to my day. Something’s wrong with Murf. It started a little after 8 last night. He’s very unsteady and having trouble walking. He can only eat or drink if he’s bracing himself against something and the food or water is brought up to his head rather than him bending down. As soon as I post this I’ll try to reach the vet.

    I won’t do twitter or Dee’s diary until I get back. Bright the day, Meeses. {{{HUGS}}}

      • Thank you. NP took one look at the rash and not only wrote Rx for valacyclovir for the shingles but also wrote Rx for tramadol for pain. I hope that kicks in soon. The vet got back to me while I was waiting for the NP. They’ll fit Murf in somehow and will call when they’re on their way. {{{Diana}}}

        • Dear Goddess! Prayers and healing vibes for both you and Murf! Can you take Singrix even after getting shingles?

          What I’ve heard about shingles has not been good, so am praying hard for you. {{{Bfitz}}}

    • I have been equivocating about getting the shingles vaccine. Nurse Kelley shared a story of someone who got it and it resulted in her losing her sight in one eye. That would suck! But a lot of people tell me that the vaccine – which requires two doses – made them really sick. I know that the shingles are from something re-animating related to childhood chicken pox but I wonder what causes it to flare up (obviously not everyone who got childhood chicken pox gets shingles). Is there something in diet or environment that one can avoid to reduce the chances of shingles or is it just a matter of luck? I did not want to add a new vaccine regimen while I was trying to keep safe from COVID but maybe I should look into the vaccine again after I get through my March-April work crunch. It sounds most unpleasant! :(

      • Shingles can also cause loss of sight if the flare is on the face. I understand the vaccine is unpleasant but so is shingles and the vaccine is only unpleasant for the 2 times you take it. Shingles can show up at any time. Shingles is a herpes variant that enters the body with the chicken pox virus. So if you’ve had chicken pox you’ve got the shingles virus in your body. Whether or not it becomes symptomatic I guess is the luck of the draw. Best I can tell, all herpes variants become symptomatic with high stress.

        • So true, bfitz! My elder son was under extremely high stress. I know you have been as well.

          It’s a nasty thing to have and avoiding it by vaccines is the best thing we can do.

      • For Goddess’ sake, please do get it, Jan. Yes, you will have a sore arm after you get it but that doesn’t last more than 3 days for most people. Yes, you’ll have a sore arm AGAIN two-three months later when you get the second jab. I had the original Shingles vaccine and Shingrix.

        My poor son had shingles at a crucial time in his life, and the mental, physical, and emotional pain he suffered are things I wouldn’t wish on a Gila monster. I am quite serious. They didn’t have the vaccine back then.

        • Maybe I should get the vaccine regimen started now before my March/April work crunch. If I get sick in April, that would be a major blow. I will be piling on big stressors in March.

          I think I remember Shingrix being the one that everyone recommends. I will have to dig up my notes.

      • I had shingles – the worst health nightmare I’ve ever had (other than kidney stones)
        Thankfully it was on my chest and lower torso and not my face/eyes – it only went half way around – but it was impossible to put clothes on or to lay down. I was painted pink in caladryl for two weeks

  10. Good morning, meeses! Friday …

    It is 3 degrees in Madison with an expected daytime high of 28. Isolated flurries in the afternoon but blowing snow expected tonight. It will not be as bad as the lower Midwest got – Kansas and Missouri got a ton of snow yesterday morning and snow led to a major pileup on an Illinois interstate.

    Holy Mackeral, parents in Indiana can decide to opt out of Black History Month curriculum if they think their lily white children’s feelings will be hurt to learn that white people enslaved Black people, fought a war to try to keep them enslaved, lynched them, blocked them from voting and discriminated in housing and education. We are going to have a generation of young people growing up in a cocoon of white privilege – I am not sure how you undo the indoctrination the Republican party is unleashing.

    Yesterday I ignored the news after a quick scan and concentrated on getting some accounting work done. Today I will ignore the news after a quick scan and concentrate on getting my taxes done.

    See all y’all later!

  11. Friday Meese. 51 here in Kingston – pouring rain all day.

    Thank you Hillary

    Puerto Rico

  12. Not quite freezing here, I brought in some of my plants, left most outside. Supposed to be a lovely weekend, then mid-week, another round of freezing and maybe precipitation. Texas weather.

  13. Good Friday morning, Moosekind! It’s fairish, 45 F., and horribly windy in Ashburn this morning. The alleged rain failed to materialize as usual. However, Dearly reports that wind is howling up the slope to the courtyard. Ugh. The high today will be 47 F.

    Not looking forward to this morning, at which time I am to have my first Reclast infusion. This afternoon I have a meeting about photographs, the scanning of, with one of the retired Peace Corps volunteers. I must get this Peace Corps article finished so I can get to my taxes. This will be the latest I’ve ever done them.

    Not much news except that I’m working up to 30 minutes on the rowing machine. I also do 25-30 minutes on the treadmill. One day I hope to weigh less, or at least fit my clothes better. Having an exercise buddy makes all the difference. She used to be a gym teacher, too, so she can show me the more difficult exercises on the machines. Yesterday she said I need to isolate my muscles and train them. Say whut?.

    Wishing a good day to all at the Pond.

  14. It’s 17 going to 48 and sunny. Which always helps my mood, not matter what else is going on. We generated a hair under 2 KWHs yesterday – m-t-d is right at 98 – so more lost ground. But if we can pull 10 or 11 today we’ll go back to gaining.

    Vet couldn’t find anything conclusive with Murf. He’s lost a lot of muscle mass but that’s normal for a cat his age so it’s possible he’s got joint pain when the weather changes. Especially as severely as the weather changed from Wednesday to Thursday. But there are a few things Murf did his best to hide from the vet that hint at neurological issues. Vet gave me something for joint pain and we’ll see if that helps. Either it does even though Murf’s only had one dose so far, or the change in the weather back to sunny helped because he’s more normal today.

    I devoutly hope the Valacyclovir stops the spread of the rash. (Which NP gasped at seeing yesterday and it’s spread since then.) It started mid-thigh on the back of my right leg in small patches. It’s now grown both directions to just below my knee going down and into “unmentionable” territory going up. Sitting and squatting are most uncomfortable. And the meds are making me nauseous. The Tramadol makes me sleepy but doesn’t seem to make much difference in pain level. Which actually isn’t as bad as the appearance of the rash would indicate. One or the other of them seems to have helped with the sinuses though. I got offline a little early because I was dozing at the computer and couldn’t focus to read anyway. Dozed by the fire, with interruptions for feeding cats and tending the fire, until bedtime and then went to sleep fairly quickly and slept fairly soundly with only one interruption. And that was after just 2 doses of Tramadol. I haven’t taken any since around 4 pm yesterday.

    I’m scared for the world – war is possible, pandemic is current reality, and climate change isn’t waiting for us to get our acts together. I’m scared for friends and family who are already in difficult situations – root cause is racism and eugenics but direct cause is the racist/eugenicist insistence that our “health care” system actually be a capitalistic “kill for fun and profit” system. sigh.

    Anyway, it’s a day. The sun is shining and I don’t need the lights on to see. Off to twitter and several patreon posts. Bright the day, Meeses. {{{HUGS}}}

  15. Good morning, 44 and cloudy outside my window today. Sorry I’ve been absent, but life got very busy this week so I’ve been coping as best I can. Part of the financial shuffle I’ve been doing involves a re finance for a better interest rate and more money in a ready savings account so getting ready for the appraisal yesterday was a lot of work. But the garage roof is now free of moss, various mold spots in the basement are gone, the garden is tidy and inviting, the back porch floor is not a muddy mess, and the house is clean, whew!

    Today is a cooking and prep day for tomorrow’s birthday lunch. I would like to reschedule but our family is eager to be here so I don’t want to disappoint. They will all help tomorrow so I just need to do my part today. And yes, I’m weary but grateful. Best wishes to all.

    • {{{princesspat & RonK}}} Happy Birthday 🎶✨🎂🍨🎁🎊💕🎶 – enjoy the lunch with the family. Healing Energy and moar {{{HUGS}}}

  16. Good morning, meeses! Saturday …

    It is 3 degrees (feels like -13) in Madison with an expected daytime high of 19. Sunny skies are in the forecast. Last night we had what they called a “snow squall” – snow and extremely high winds (30 to 40 mph) for about an hour. It was not a blizzard, probably because there was not enough snow involved, but it was fearsome to watch from the safety of my warm home. Tomorrow it will be 50!

    The headlines are all proclaiming that it was a “very bad week” for Donald Trump. :::yawn::: It may sell newspapers to write about the legal woes of the disgraced twice-impeached ex-president but it will not make him any less powerful in the Republican Party or less revered by the MAGA base. Mike Pence decided that he has no political future without MAGA and pivoted to embracing the “legitimate political discourse” RNC description of the attempted violent overthrow of the 2020 presidential election. I thought that those who were lionizing him for his comments a few weeks ago were a bit premature. They are all Lindsey Graham – careening in and out of political sanity as they realize that they can’t put the genie back in the bottle: tRump rebuilt the party as a party of christian white nationalists and you either embrace that or become irrelevant.

    The end game is finally becoming clear in the Russia-Ukraine conflict – Russia plans to invade, decapitate Ukrainian leadership and put their puppet in power. There is nothing anyone can do about it because it then becomes a civil war – Ukrainian separatists versus Ukrainian-Russians with a world power (with troops and tanks) on the side of the Ukrainian-Russians. Just like when the Russians “annexed” the Crimean peninsula, we can only watch and bang our shoes on the table.

    Congress passed and the president signed a new Continuing Resolution to keep the government open until March 11th. Goddess, I wish we had an opposition party that cared enough that the federal government stays open to pass long-term funding bills. The last time we had a government shutdown during tax season, it was a nightmare.

    I have a stack of deferred accounting projects to get done today including those aforementioned tax returns. I need to get to them before some shiny bauble on the Internet distracts me.

    See all y’all later!

  17. Saturday Meese. 20 degrees here in Kingston going up to 36 with some snow showers. Abrupt shift in the forecast – we were supposed to be warmish all week – I guess the midwest storm cold decided to head this way.

    I’m so angry about Judge Chu I can’t talk about it.

    Puerto Rico

    The six sisters, who are teachers. who are all protesting was my favorite tweet from Carlos

  18. Cold morning here but it’s supposed to be great this afternoon, and downright warm tomorrow. 3-day weekend so I don’t have to rush around like usual. Today: pick up groceries and maybe some housework or a walk, since it’ll be gorgeous.

  19. It’s 38 going up to 56 and sunny today. Yesterday we generated a hair under 12 KWHs and the m-t-d is 110. Hopefully we will do as good (or better) again today as clouds will be moving in again tomorrow. I’m not happy with anything under 200, which isn’t likely considering the forecast although it’s possible in the time left in the month, but as long as we get to 150 we’ll have beaten the 2.5K system for February. (Which we didn’t do last year. sigh.)

    Murf is almost back to normal so I think the NSAIDs for joint pain are working. Which means the really scary episode was probably joint pain brought on by the abrupt shift in weather. And says we should keep him on them. The neuro signs are still there but they’re not enough to be a real problem at this point.

    My rash is still spreading. sigh. It’s mid calf now as well as in the unmentionable areas going up. Sitting is difficult to painful. But the muscle ache means so is standing for any length of time. NP just sent in Rx for anti-nausea meds. I’m not sure the nausea is bad enough for meds – but it’s not pleasant so I’ll go get them. I mostly had planned to stay in my pajamas today as they are the softest cloth and have the fewest seams to rub against the rash. I guess I won’t. Still trying to balance the pain meds with the drowsiness – within an hour of taking them I can’t focus so no reading or working my puzzles or anything. When it runs out in the middle of the night I’m taking 600 mg Ibuprofen (yes, I know 400 is supposed to be the max – but I’m only doing it once in a 24-hour period) and that gets me through the rest of the night. Shingles sux.

    I hope to heaven everybody else is OK, at least relatively, because I’m having trouble focusing enough to figure out anything that I need to deduce from what’s said/written.

    Off to twitter. Bright the day, Meeses. {{{HUGS}}}

        • A couple of years ago, I had a terrible problem with itching all over (no rash, just itch). Cold packs helped – I was able to sleep for a couple of hours with one on my ribs & stomach, would wake up when it thawed & switch it out. I know it won’t work on your hands, but maybe elsewhere?

          • Thank you. I can’t do cold packs in the winter. All my muscles in contact would spasm. I’ve done that in summer though and it can help then. Which isn’t now of course. But the Caladryl is helping in the daytime and the tramadol (followed 6 to 8 hours later by Ibuprofen) is helping at night. So I’m managing. Not comfortable, but managing. moar {{{HUGS}}}

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