Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Wonderful and Scary Day!

Thanks to my friends for the nice anniversary wishes yesterday!! It was so nice to feel special like that...gush. It will take me a few days to catch up on your blogs!

We had a very nice day yesterday. We started off the morning in the sunshine. There was some snow in the forecast for the evening, but our outing was planned for the afternoon, so we figured we were safe...anyway, more on that a little later! I made Alex's grandma's signature "Toast-ettes". This is a variation on the toad in the hole. Alex's side of the family is French Canadian, though he was brought up in the States, and we live an English life here. His grandma didn't pronounce the "t" at the end of toast, so we call them "tosettes"...yummy!

I have so many food allergies and I make mine without the yolks. They're so good. The toast itself tastes almost like melba toast around the edges!

We went out after breakfast because we wanted to get some anniversary gifts for each other. It has sort of become a tradition that we get fishing gear! We decided to buy these ice fishing rods, see how tiny they are? We will eventually use them for ice fishing, but in the summer we will use them for small crappy fishing. We're building our collection! We just need to find some reels.

We also got some new insulated rain boots for spring and fall fishing. They were on sale so we took advantage of the lower price. So..while we were in the store, the weather got really bad. What started as a sunny day with snow forecast only to begin after 8pm, turned into a white-out blizzard - NOT what was in the forecast and we were a 90 minute drive from home. We hurried to get the food we needed for dinner, then started back at dusk in a blizzard. Alex doesn't drive yet, so it was up to me and I have to say my hands are still sore today from white-knuckle driving for 2 hours.

I went onto Google Maps to take a print screen of this hill. This is the ONLY way home unless we backtrack for two hours, then take the other way, which would total 5 hours. It's beautiful going up the mountain in the summer, but last was frightening. The onslaught of snow, the cars skidding, ice, lack of road clearing...see the exclamation mark? That's where we got stuck. Thankfully I made it just beyond that point so I could slide back into someone's driveway (thank you to those people for having a clear driveway!). I actually started crying from fear because people were all over that road, it was so dangerous and we nearly got hit a few times. We were stuck there about half an hour, waiting for the trucks to clear and sand and even then, in the lowest gear with my foot to the floor, we only inched up as the tires whirred. Things go through your head in situations like that...the pets are alone, what if we can't make it home, what if the car slides down into the lake or the river or what if some yahoo with a four-wheel drive and an impatient attitude hits us...I heard stories this morning of people stuck ALL NIGHT in their cars on the highways near Montreal - what a disaster.

We were both traumatized from that. It was really scary folks. We don't have studded winter tires, just the regular ones, and a front wheel drive and the lack of control was terrifying. We agreed that we will try to put the thousand dollars aside as soon as we can to get new winter tires that are studded because we aren't ready to buy a new car with four-wheel drive, and we do live in the mountains so winter is going to happen whether we like it or not! The fishing boat might just have to wait a few years now sigh...but our safety is so much more important. But we made it home safely - much later than planned, the dogs needed to pee and we needed a drink when we got back! This is a nice Moscato wine called Nivole, it's sweet and we relaxed, listening to the Jack Benny radio show, sipping on wine! Jack Benny is a master comedian...I'm so glad these radio shows are available on You Tube, this kind of comedy doesn't exist anymore.

We honestly didn't feel like cooking, but we agreed that we can't let what happened ruin our plans. We really wanted to celebrate our 4 years together, so we tackled the recipes together which was so nice! The appetizer was a Tuscan Tomato Soup that was really fresh and yummy!

For our main course, we had more appetizers :) I know this isn't everyone's cup of tea, but we had Steak Tartare - well Alex did. I used to eat this and LOVED it, but my fear of beef getting stuck in my esophagus outweighs my desire to eat this lovely appetizer. Yes, it's raw meat, that's why we know it's not for everyone! For me, I made a Smoked Trout Mousse with Orange and Chives.

For dessert, we thawed out the other half of my birthday cake! That Ferrero Rocher yummy cake. There is just a little bit left! The meal was so delicious and we stayed up intil 4:30am watching a series called Alone. It's just about people being dropped in remote locations all by themselves to see how long they can survive fending for themselves, we are hooked on it and had to force ourselves to turn it off for some sleep. But we were kind of riled up from the trauma of that drive home.

We woke up to about 2 more feet of snow this morning and it's still going! We had to shovel out just to give the dogs a place to "go". I say this every March when spring seems to be arriving. "We ALWAYS get a horrible snow storm around St-Patty's Day". And we got it again this year! It never fails.

Jack didn't last long outside but the girls loved being in the snow, watching me shovel for them I'm headed back to bed, after very little sleep, to watch more tv shows with Alex...we have no intention to take the car out ever again in any type of snowstorm, no matter what special day it falls on! I remember the days of commuting to work and back and I'm so grateful that we have built a life together that doesn't require back and forth driving to an office. Simplicity and planning...despite the scary experience from yesterday, I feel lucky to be living where I am and having my loving relationship and my wonderful fur family. Can't take any of that for granted!


Sunnybrook Farm said...

I really hate getting stuck, so much that I don't go out unless I have to in bad weather. I once had an old VW bug and I put chains on it when it snowed and it would go anywhere. Now I don't have chains for our modern cars but it would be a good investment if anyone made them. They weren't too hard to install but you couldn't go very fast and don't use them on pavement. Glad you didn't get in a big wreck, all that food looks great.

MrsDuncanMahogany said...

Hi Rain, I know only too well exactly what you both experienced yesterday! Living on the Prairies we get walloped with some heavy duty storms. Manitoba offers a perk for winter tires, so I am not sure if Quebec does this too. Our public insurance (MPI) has a winter tire program that anyone can get. Essentially its like getting a loan (up to $2000) for winter tires at a really low financing. We have taken advantage for one of our vehicles. Its incredible the difference it makes. I hope you are both okay today!

I have to say, I took a bit of time today to read through all of your posts. You are incredible!! :) Your organizational skills are top notch. If I could only do that for my recipes, my fridge and freezer I would be happy. You have inspired me to do this! Its only the 2 of us at home now, our son is an adult now and is on his own (only coming home a couple times a week for dinner now) but I am just amazed at your thoroughness. Well done!

Perhaps you should consider moving to Manitoba when you are looking for property. That's our dream as well, getting out of the city and somewhere (not too far) that offers peace and quiet and lots of space for my gardens. I am an avid gardener as well. 2 years ago my brother made me a veg trug. I LOVE IT!!!!

Have a lovely afternoon and evening! I look forward to tomorrow's post! :)


Mama Pea said...

That is so scary when you're in a situation like you were last night and feel you don't really have control of the situation. Wouldn't be so bad if you didn't have to worry about the other drivers, but, of course, you do. It's so hard to judge weather conditions in the winter. Regardless of what the forecast is you sometimes find yourself in a bad situation. We've had our share of them and I'm sure others think of us as way too cautious in cancelling plans just because the weather looks "iffy." If others had experiences like you did (and that we have) maybe they wouldn't be so quick to call us wimps! I'm so thankful you made it home safely and took time to decompress. Am sending you the Four Star Good Driver Award for the winter!!!

Nicole said...

Gosh girl ... I hate to be stuck in sutuations like that. Living where I am living ... it happens way too often. When the weather people say ... snow is on it's way, I stay put ;)
I am with Dianna ... u should look in Manitoba ... u would be soooooo close to me :)
Are u guys planning sone ice fishing? I havn't done it in a while but it is so much fun :) great deals u found there.
Your tartare apatizer looks delicious.I havn't any tartare since I moved to Canada. It's a very popular dish in Germany. Usually eaten on a yummy bread with onions and beer :)
I am glad u guys had a good day... besides the traumatizing part of it.
2 feet of snow ... is a horrible throught. I don't want any more ...

jaz@octoberfarm said...

i live on top of a mountain so i could never be without 4wd. glad you made it home safe and had a nice night!

Rain said...

Hi Gill :) My boyfriend said yesterday as we were slipping backwards down that hill "we need chains, screw studded tires"...we were thinking about that because where we plan to live, there may not be pavement anywhere near us. We just got the car in 2013, so a four-wheel drive might be 10 years from now. Thanks, the food was wonderful!

Rain said...

Hi Dianna! :) When we look for properties, we always go on and honestly there isn't much for anywhere west of Ontario, do you have any links I could check out? We are not opposed to living anywhere else in Canada. Well, unless a gem comes along, we will leave Quebec. And I have to look into that winter tire program, boy that would help. I've never heard of that here but it's work looking into. My last car was a Hyundai and the tires were $40 usually, on the SUV the summer tires were $800 including taxes and instalation, very pricey! We are looking for exactly what you described, peace and quiet and lots of space for a big garden, plus room for the dogs to run around. And somewhere to fish!!! :))

And thanks so much for the compliments, I need to be organized to feel well. If something is out of order, the anxiety disorder starts and I can't allow that :) I'm so glad you like my blog and I'm happy you don't mind reading my long posts! :) We're okay today btw, a day in bed watching tv shows helped!!! :)

Rain said...

Hi Mama Pea :)) Seems like everyone knows what we went through, it's so scary when you've never experienced that before. When the car started sliding backwards, that's when I lost it and started balling my eyes out, but I had to keep as strong as possible because I didn't want us to wreck either. Alex helped out so much, I'm so glad I was alone. The stress of the situation gave me a full blown panic attack and my body shook uncontrollably. Horrible, I'm so glad it's over! And I think you're very smart not to even think of going out if snow is in the forecast. It's one thing to have control over your own vehicle, but you can't control the hotheads out there who think you're going too slow for them. And thanks I'm proud of how I got us up that darn hill!!!

Rain said...

Hey Nik :))I know how often you guys get stuck, it's insane. And you're not allowed studded tires there right? LOL...I told you if we can afford a place anywhere in Canada with all of our criteria, it doesn't matter where!!! Manitoba or even Ontario would be ideal. Maybe not Alberta and BC because we don't think we could afford the land there. I always wanted to live in the Yukon too, but again, land prices have skyrocketed. You should make some tartare for yourself, it's so easy and yummy, you just need fresh meat and a good cut. I remember when we went to the butcher and I asked him which was the best cut, he showed me the Top Sirloin Butt (it's not too expensive) and I said "for tartare?" and he pulled off a piece and ate it in front of me and said "yes, for tartare" I laughed! Well, ice fishing maybe not yet because we're not prepared fully yet. But if we can find some reels then we can use the little rods for small perch and crappy. Eventually yes, we'll go ice fishing, but maybe not while we're living here. I've decided no more shoveling. I am going by the attitude "let Nature take care of it" lol...I can only say that because we don't need to go out until April now!! :))

Rain said...

Thanks Joyce, yeah, a four wheel drive will be a definite must on our next car. Right now it's not usually an issue because we do live in a village with pavement and the roads are normally cleared, but last night was a real eye opener. But yes, we got home safe and had a wonderful night! :)

MrsDuncanMahogany said...

Hi Rain! I too check; that is my go to at least once a week. At least I have stopped pestering my husband to move to Nova Scotia (that is where my heart is). If I come across any good listings I will be sure to slide them your way 😊 I know you have a bit of time until you move but this might give you some good ideas.

Tires are expensive!! Actually everything is expensive nowadays!

I love organization and wonder if my anxiety would be better if I were to be better organized?!? Hmmmmmm ☺

I don't mind reading your posts, I really enjoy them. I hope you don't mind my long winded replies 😁

Have a good peaceful night!

Kristina said...

The day I took Zuri to the vet for updated shots, I had to drive in a bad snow storm. I hate driving over drifted roadways. I canceled our daughter's college tour this week too. The storm passed through, and now we are finally getting less wind. Happy Anniversary!

Toirdhealbheach Beucail said...

For what it is worth, my mother always told my father that they should live in a place for at least a year or visit it in every season to really understand what living there would be like. Glad you are both alright - and yes, sounds like snow tires (and/or 4 wheel drive) will need to move up on the list (which I always am grumpy about, to be honest with you. Practical things never feel like as much fun).

Rain said...

Hi Dianna :) I'm hooked on lol...especially in the Maritimes where land and property is so inexpensive. That's why we'll likely end up in NS or NB. We want to live way below our means so we're willing to get a nice fixer upper as long as all the other stuff on our list is mostly there. Our dream is to have the house paid off within the first 10 years if we can so that we'll have time to save for when my workman's comp income dwindles when I'm 68.

I like long-winded replies worries about that! For me, when I'm organized, I don't have to worry so much that I've forgotten something, so for me it helps anxious moments when I can't really control my body's fight or flight response! It really does help me.

Rain said...

Hi Kristina :) Thanks! Good thing about canceling the college tour, it's just not worth the possible danger to drive in bad weather. I watched a video (I probably shouldn't have) of a 50 car pile up just south of here, it was awful. We have some sun today and I'm hoping the storm has passed us too!

Rain said...

Hi Toirdealbheach :) That's hard for me to write!! Thanks for your comment :) Lol, I agree practical things aren't fun at all sometimes!! Well, I've lived here all of my life but I've never experienced that kind of slippy/dangerous driving before. We do have pretty decent winter tires, but for that climb up the mountain in bad weather, it really takes studded winter tires. Otherwise we're okay, but the other alternative is to just stay home and save the near thousand dollars...yikes, that's too much for tires. But what if there is an emergency? Prevention costs money!!!

Sam I Am...... said...

What an exciting anniversary! OMG though....I used to love to drive until I had a few experiences like that coming home from work in Iowa. It's not all flat either...very hilly where I lived and it was raining when I left work but turned to ice as I got nearer to home....I purposely pulled/slid into someone's drive as the road was just a sheet of ice and I was getting ready to go down a hill which I knew would lead to an accident for braking at all. SO, I totally understand how rattled it can make you. I was shaking a long time after that and finally got home in someone's 4-w drive which was much better so I now have 4 wheel drive and when I move back North (again very hilly) I will be investing in some really good snow tires or chains or some thing for sure! So glad you got home safe and sound and were still able to celebrate your anniversary!

Rain said...

Thanks was so scary, even though my boyfriend was with me, I felt really alone during that time because I felt like I was going to kill us or something. I mean, I do realize that I can't control the weather and the other drivers, but the responsibility was stressing me! You know, we were going UP the hill. The people on the other side were sliding down too, braking was a challenge for them, I don't know which way I'd have preferred lol! If I could, I wouldn't drive anymore at all. It's fun to have that freedom, but things are dangerous out there.