The year 2018, like this snowman …

mug one snowman

… is going, going, gone!

This snowman is smiling.  That’s because he didn’t know his fate once photographer Jill Wellington snapped this picture and he dissolved into the hot chocolate – ouch!

But his marshmallow face mirrors mine, because I’m all smiles after tallying up my walking miles.  I’ll wait ‘til the end of this post and then I’ll crow about my total share those stats with you.

In the meantime, looking at this cup of hot chocolate with the cute snowman makes you feel all warm and fuzzy about Winter – me too.  But, yesterday and today when I embarked on my walk, Saturday night’s freezing rain and a light dusting of snow snatched away some of the joy of these walks – in fact this morning I just stayed in the ‘hood because I knew walking would be slick and icy on the perimeter path like yesterday.  The snow and ice is gone now – it’s been pouring raining for hours!

Winter is just snow fun sometimes!

Saturday night’s freezing rain made a little glare ice on the cement and asphalt pathway, then the light dusting of snow made it difficult to see exactly where that ice was.  I decided to just drive down to Council Point Park and walk on the grass next to the pathway.

On another note, snow is a tell-all sometimes, and Sunday morning that snow told me that some critters came callin’ between the time I threw out about eight peanuts on the porch, got suited up, then left on my walk.  Well, I wonder how I knew?

tracks

So, the chickadees may have been scoping out the porch to see if any more cashews were there, but upon a closer inspection, I think these big bird tracks likely belong to a blue jay or a cardinal with a penchant for peanuts.  Hope they were able to grab at least one of them.  The large paw track told me the Fox squirrel had been by, likely intruding on little Grady’s share of peanuts.  That made me mad, and this time I didn’t see him so I could chase him away.  Nor did I see Grady, as I would have slipped that gray squirrel a few peanuts on the side.

That little dusting of snow sure changed the Park’s landscape.

I arrived at Council Point Park to be greeted by Parker just as soon as I stepped out of the car.  His little bit of attention warranted my digging into the Ziploc bag for extra peanuts for my favorite Park pal, and he guarded that cache of nuts while chomping on a few, then took off to bury the rest of them.

I cut across the parking lot with its low points where glare ice has gathered – grrrr.  And what’s this – no one grabbed peanuts from the stash I left on Saturday morning at the drinking fountain?  Those slackers stayed up in their nests I guess.

fountain

Once on the perimeter path I noticed two things:  the asphalt pathway was slick in spots and the police vehicle had already been by checking out the Park – whew, that meant I could amble and take photos without holding up production.

wheel marks1

wheel marks2

I walked in the grass, and soon realized it would’ve been smarter to wear my hiking boots.  Well, surely no squirrels would be nuzzling up against my shoe tips with all those frosty crystals on them.

snow on top of show

A couple of my peanut pals did come down from a tree after deciding they weren’t going to let the snow-covered grass prevent them from begging for peanuts.

squirrel in snow

squirrel in snow1

A hint of sun even made a decent shadow in that dusting of snow.

shadow

The landscape is rather blah this time of year, but the bright-white snow freshened up things a little.

desolate5

desolate3

desolate

desolate1

desolate2

desolate4

I got five miles walked at the Park yesterday, though I sidestepped the slick asphalt path (and hopefully the goose poop that was underneath the snow as well – I kept doing a sole check every lap!)

poop check

I made it home in one piece and without incident, my pockets lighter from doling out peanuts.

This morning I decided to stay in the neighborhood and avoid the icy paths and besides … rain was predicted by mid-morn.  I got four miles walked, so I wrapped up and put a bow on my 2018 walking miles.

Ta-da!  And now the year-end tally.

Well, here it is, the last day of 2018 and just a few hours away from a brand-new year.  Did you fulfill all your goals and aspirations you made on January 1st?  I did, as far as my walking goal, but not all items were checked on the rest of the list.

So, my 2018 goal was to walk one more mile than the previous year (1,050 miles in 2017), and on December 6th I crossed that threshold since I had walked 1,051 miles.  At times in October and November I worried that I wouldn’t reach my end goal because the weather was just plain “lousy” due to intermittent rain, ice, and minor snow accumulation.  But, the Detroit area went on to have a great December weather-wise, in fact the third least snowiest Winter in history.

So, all this good weather prompted me to keep on walking and I only lost a handful of December days due to rain.  It also helped we had the extra holiday days and my boss was on vacation for a week, so I got an extra mile in each morning.

My FINAL total was 1,162 miles (1,870 kilometers) walked.  This was 111 miles over my original goal.  Next year I’m going to shoot for the moon and instead of just one more mile walked, I’m going to try and walk 80 more miles … this would equal 2,000 kilometers.  Many of you use the metric system, so this will be a fun way to keep track of my miles.  I do think this goal is doable because I’m going to start walking in the rain sometimes – not that torrential stuff though … baby steps first.   While I’ve never been one to embrace being out in the rain, having commuted to work by bus for many decades and being forced to endure the elements, I realize that I could have walked more had I gone out in those raindrops, instead of whining about them.  That said, I still can’t promise I’ll be “Singing in the Rain” like the late Debbie Reynolds … 

… but I’ll give it a go anyway.

I may not have checked off those other items on my “to do” list, but I drove a lot of miles in my car (962), and if you think that low amount of mileage is funny, for years I aimed to walk more miles than I drove the car and that was when my total hovered in the 400-500 miles walked range.

I tried out many new parks this year, and took way too many pictures as I walked through them.

This is my 200th blog post for 2018 as well.

So, tomorrow it begins anew … a new year to walk, explore, take photos and fill this blog with tales of squirrels, and birds, and memories too.  I wish each of you …

mug-joy

… health and happiness in the coming year and beyond – may YOU always fulfill your wishes and goals.

I’ll leave you with this quote:

Life is more meaningful when our goal is fulfillment rather than gratification. ~ Gayle Lynn Goodman

 

[Images by Jill Wellington]

 

About lindasschaub

This is my first blog and I enjoy writing each and every post immensely. I started a walking regimen in 2011 and decided to create a blog as a means of memorializing the people, places and things I see on my daily walks. I have always enjoyed people watching, and so my blog is peppered with folks I meet, or reflections of characters I have known through the years. Often something piques my interest, or evokes a pleasant memory from my memory bank, and this becomes a “slice o’ life” blog post that day. I respect and appreciate nature and my interaction with Mother Nature’s gifts is also a common theme. Sometimes the most-ordinary items become fodder for points to ponder over and touch upon. My career has been in the legal field and I have been a legal secretary for over three decades, primarily working in downtown Detroit, and now working from my home. I graduated from Wayne State University with a degree in print journalism in 1978, although I’ve never worked in that field. I like to think this blog is the writer in me finally emerging!! Walking and writing have met and shaken hands and the creative juices are flowing once again in Walkin’, Writin’, Wit & Whimsy – hope you think so too.
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66 Responses to The year 2018, like this snowman …

  1. Happy New Year Linda, to both you and Parker. 🙂 xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Shelley says:

    Congratulations on exceeding your goal! I’m inspired by your words. I love your silhouette photo, too, of course, I think all the other ones are great, too, but that one stood out. Happy New Year dear blogging friend – I look forward to reading about your adventures in 2019!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thank you Shelley and soon I’ll step out to blaze new trails and attempt to exceed my 2018 record, hopefully undaunted by the weather. I just thought of you when I heard on the news about the big cheese drop last night 🙂 I look forward to reading your daily trials and tribulations and lots of smiles as well.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Shelley says:

        You’ll exceed your goals, I’m sure of it! Oh, my, I didn’t know about the big cheese drop – but I did consume too much cheese last night – it’s Wisconsin, that’s what we do. Thanks for your blogging friendship – Happy New Year to you!

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        And back at you Shelley. The little news story was a reporter interviewing the person in charge of the “Cheese Drop” … they said “people think the cheese is heavy like the lead crystal ball in Times Square – it is not heavy, because it is not made of real cheese. If it was made of real cheese it would be way too heavy and break the mechanism.” I have heard about the “Cheese Drop” … always thought it was the real deal!
        Here in Lincoln Park, they have a “Penny Drop” … a penny has Abraham Lincoln’s head on it, and many things in Lincoln Park sport Lincoln’s image on it, so they drop an over-sized penny at midnight 01/01 … about five people go to watch it, and I’m not one of them. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  3. ruthsoaper says:

    Way to go Linda!!! I love that you have set even higher goal for this year. Your enthusiasm and commitment are inspiring.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thanks Ruth – I hope to not let the weather creep into my progress like I did in 2018 … I have to learn to work around the crummy weather and just get out and walk, so therefore I purposely set a higher goal for myself. Other walkers in the Park, as well as several fellow bloggers who are runners, tell me they go out in any weather and I guess if I’m going to say I am an avid walker and write a blog about this subject, I need to change my tune too. Thank you as always for your kind words Ruth.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Michael says:

    You always seem to do well when you have a goal…Bravo. I love how plump the squirrels look – like theyre all ready for a long cold winter though they still wouldn’t say no to a few extra nuts I am sure 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thanks Michael – I upped the goal and have to embrace the rain more … I commuted by bus so many years that going out in crummy weather has not held much appeal for me, especially since I work from home. Those squirrels are begging and pleading with cute looks so they can keep their peanut stash intact for a rainy day. 🙂

      Like

      • Michael says:

        U know i always loved the rain n even more so under an umbrella. The sound is just fabulous..

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        I have to change my mindset Michael … we had so much rain this year … one of our rainiest years on record. And this torrential rain or all-day rains. I am going to change my tune in 2019 … you just watch and see. Thank you for following my blog Michael.

        Like

      • Michael says:

        sounds like a plan! I always followed u but unfollowed then immediately followed to try get your posts to immediately appear in my notifications 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        I am behind in Reader half the time and remember how I said I wanted to get the elevated gizmo for my laptop to stand more … now it is a necessity because I have messed up my shoulder logging too many hours in front of the computer. I made a makeshift riser for my old laptop in my room which I’m using now, but it shakes, rattles and rolls and I could get dizzy typing on it! I should have seen it coming – sigh.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Michael says:

        Oh I remember yes there was that cardboard one wasnt there…

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Yes, I should have gotten it – “too late smart” as the expression goes …

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Sarebear's Writing Spot says:

    Love that quote! Happy New Year Linda!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. great read Linda! You have it all figured out.Congratulations on meeting & busting through your walking total!
    Heres to a even better year ahead for you…..& your little furry chubby friends!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thank you Wayne – As you read, I put it out there … for not just one mile but 80 more miles … the equivalent of 2,000 kilometers. Thank you for suggesting that number/goal. Parker was such a sweetie today. I was taking pictures of one of the memorial trees and I’ll do a post on it later this week. I gave him some peanuts so he would eat them/bury them, so I could take pictures of what this man’s family created to hang on the memorial tree (I focused on this tree around the holidays). Instead of staying on the ground, he climbed up on the park bench seat, then the back of the bench seat, then down near the memorial stone to munch away. It was like having my own little pet at the Park. I had to smile when I watched him, and … of course I took pictures as well.

      Like

      • In ten years time it’ll be 3000 klicks! Your going to be wearing out a few pair.
        Parker is such a nice little guy. He knows you well.Making contact with a animal is magical!

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        That’s right Wayne — the more miles the merrier and once I’m retired and no Monday-Friday defined work schedule, I can increase the miles … I have a few more years to go for that, so for now I am grateful for not having a 9-5 job and being able to walk as much as I can and do. Parker and my connection yesterday was really magical – it was as if he didn’t want to scurry off as he often does after he meets me, then stays a few minutes after I give him peanuts. Instead, he seemed content to linger and enjoy my company with no other walkers and no other squirrels as we stayed in this memorial tree area. I’m going to write a post about it tomorrow. The person for him the memorial treer is dedicated died on 01/03/02 … the decorated his tree with mementoes and I understand from other walkers, that his family convenes at this tree from time to time to memorialize him. I’m going to call it “Peace out at the Park” … or “Peace at the Park” … the former is not used very much anymore … for that matter “peace” is not either.

        Like

      • Parker is becoming more familiar with you.Thats a compliment to your nature Linda!

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Thank you Wayne – yesterday he reminded me more of a faithful pet, that lingers by your side, than a squirrel who was there for peanuts. Parker went down to the path and got peanuts, then went back to the bench, or close by me. It was nice as there was only one other person in the Park at that time, not near me though.

        Like

      • as simple as it may sound or look,these connections with animals/Nature is very important!

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Yes, very still and peaceful in the Park, two beings silently connecting with one another.

        Like

      • you understand!
        Thats what happened to Teddy & I.I’ve never had such a deep connection with a bear before!

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        I do remember you said that – it was like you knew each other from another time and place. Yes, I do understand – this was different for me like there was “contentment” -absolutely no fear there, just contentment.

        Like

      • such tremendous joy comes from such humble beginnings.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        This is very true and it was a special moment. I had three bloggers write me today about how they like the squirrel stories and feel inspired to interact with them when they go to the Park, including this woman who commented on my post I did yesterday, about her husband feeding the squirrels Cheetos. They have two grandsons and are teaching them about nature – they go to the park to feed the ducks and squirrels … she wrote this today … felt nice reading it:

        I could not wait to tell you my story from today, Linda. You know my hubby is retired now. My son asked us to pick up his boys from school today. The little one gets out at noon and the older one at 3:00. We had some time to kill after lunch, so hubby suggested we all go to the park that the little one likes to visit. There were some squirrels there, scampering around. They seemed somewhat tame. We had some Cheetos left over from lunch and hubby knelt down and held out a Cheeto to one of the squirrels. I have a picture of it taking the Cheeto our of Bill’s hand! It was so cool! Our grandson loved it. Of course, I immediately thought of you and your squirrel buddies!

        Like

      • there is a hidden problem in this.Other people see you feeding the squirrels & they think they can feed all animals! Most won’t of course but it only takes one.Tell your friend not to feed them anything un-natural.
        People feed bears from their cars.Some animals you can feed but most cannot.Never feed a racoon,wolf,bear & you can never feed a Cougar,unless you throw it a live chicken.They only eat fresh.They have to kill every time they eat.They will never eat something that is already dead.

        Like

      • lindasschaub says:

        I hope they don’t try to feed other animals, and I think they are doing it just for the little ones. I like how they are teaching them to like nature – they take pinecones and cover them in peanut butter and roll them in birdseed and hang them on the trees. I like that. I think they are prudent people. Laurie’s husband retired last week and they are going to Costa Rica and traveling to see family. The nature guide at Lake Erie Metropark told me they don’t want people feeding any wildlife there – the people come to drop off buckets of corn for the deer so the deer come up to everyone’s cars looking for handouts. They had two zoo-related incidents in a matter of days – the poor woman who was mauled by the lion, and a child who got too near the rhino exhibit. Rhinos are supposed to be one of the most dangerous animals in the world. A wealthy woman here in Michigan went to Africa a few years ago with her son on a safari and she was charged by a rhino … I warned my boss last January when he went to Africa to be careful.

        Like

      • the most dangerous animal anywhere are Homo Sapiens! Having said that, Hippos are probably the most dangerous in Africa.

        Like

      • lindasschaub says:

        I was surprised when I heard that hippos were so dangerous … it rammed into this woman. The only reason it made the headlines was she was rich and donated a lot of money to charity and sat on the board of several big charitable institutions. So it was a loss to them (and her family – the son on the trip with her was not injured, though he was right by her). I think I read that the big cats are far more dangerous, maybe the cougar more than lion? Homo Sapiens are nothing special a lot of the time though they like to think they are.

        Like

      • Oh…she was killed! So sad! A Rhino is a dangerous animal!

        Like

      • lindasschaub says:

        Yes she was mauled by the rhino and before then, I had no idea they were so dangerous. I mean, they are a wild animal, but I’d never heard anything about them being that dangerous before.

        Like

      • the Hippo is way more dangerous than a Rhino I believe.Look up the stats & let me know?

        Like

      • lindasschaub says:

        Guess what! You don’t live here and it WAS a hippo that killed here, not a rhino. Where did I get that idea from? I just Googled and you are right – when Robb (my boss) took pics of the animals he saw on safari, he had black rhinos and white rhinos and I thought they weren’t that big, but they had that big horn on them. https://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2017/08/michigan_woman_killed_by_hippo.html

        Like

      • Hippos kill way more people than Lions do.Very territorial I believe!

        Like

      • lindasschaub says:

        Well I had forgotten it was a hippo, but my initial feeling when I heard the story a year ago was that I didn’t think of them as especially mean. A big cat looks mean once they open their mouths.

        Like

      • looking mean & being mean are two different things

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        You got that right Wayne.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Congratulations on your total mileage. We walked 551 miles on our morning walks.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thanks Anne and that is fantastic for you and John – you did better than you originally thought you would, because you said you would be happy if you did half of my original goal, so you surpassed it. You were even on the go with two trips to NY and family and friends visiting you … you did great. That is how I started following you … I searched for posts about walking and you had just done one about walking to the Creek to see how it had risen and you showed all the ice/snow along the way. (I don’t think you took off your coat and hung it on the mailbox that time – too cold!)

      Like

  8. Laurie says:

    Way to go on your walking miles, Linda. That is amazing! Great total. Thankfully, we did not get the freezing rain and ice that you did. We got lots of rain yesterday, but it was fairly warm. I love the picture of the tree with the red branches. so pretty. Now, I think I will go make myself a mug of hot chocolate. That snowman made cocoa seem very appealing!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thanks Laurie – I really pushed myself after I passed the original goal because I had the opportunity with our snow-free December. We had that ugly rain yesterday so every bit of ice was melted when I went to the Park this morning (thankfully) and I did 6 miles. I liked that tree too and I took some pictures of some bushes with bright red berries which are about the only color in the Park these days and now reading your comment, I realize I forgot to use the photo. The marshmallow snowman was so cute. I follow Jill Wellington, who is a Saginaw, Michigan photographer on Facebook. She ordered all the cute marshmallows (she had several more in a December post) from Williams Sonoma for this shoot. I told her they were so cute I had to use them in a blog post. I always send her my blog posts when I use her pictures. I actually found her on Pixabay.com when I was looking for holiday pictures and then was surprised to find out she lives in Michigan, about an hour or so from me.

      Like

  9. Ann Marie stevens says:

    Miss Linda…………………….congratulations on topping off your 2018 goal…………………you are a winner ever which way, walking, photographing, informing, sharing, and feeding the local animal life in our area…………..I enjoy reading your blogs

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thank you Ann Marie – I will be like you and go out walking in the rain – you and others do it and so will I in 2019. Thank you for your kind comments and I am glad you are enjoying my writing and pictures … it was a special day when we connected at Council Point Park looking at a Woolly Bear Caterpillar.

      Like

  10. kim critzer says:

    Linda – Congratulations – oh my gosh you go girl! So I wanna know how many pounds of peanuts did you dole out this year – and where can we send contributions? I would love to donate, as I get so much enjoyment out of your walks and feeding all those critters, feel I should do my part. Happy New Year – thanks for bringing joy to me and your other readers. xo kim PS I’ve been having trouble with being able to leave messages – don’t know if it is a wordpress problem or what.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Gee Kim – I can’t begin to tell you how many pounds, but many many packages. We used to be able to buy peanuts by the pound at the bulk store or grocery store and they don’t sell them like that in the grocery store and there are no bulk stores around anymore (it seemed they were on every corner for awhile). So I buy the peanuts by the the bag (unsalted for their benefit and to keep salt off the camera as well). I tell other walkers that soon I will claim them as dependents on my income tax. I do get so much enjoyment out of them and their antics and I am glad to hear others get a smile as well. I noticed right away that it was your name instead of your blog name – WordPress gets wonky sometimes – I had something in SPAM this morning from a fellow blogger who comments all the time and all she said was “Happy New Year Linda!” – go figure! Hope your 2019 is better than 2018 Kim!

      Like

  11. Impressive and inspiring! I wish you another great year of walking and photographing! Happy 2019 Linda!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Congratulations!!!! 111 miles more than your goal is unbelievable but not for you! You are such an inspiration Linda!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Mackenzie says:

    Linda, congrats on surpassing your goal by a LONG shot!! Amazing!! You trudged through the snow, rain, hail, and even goose droppins to accomplish a huge feat. Bravo. Can’t wait to see how 2019 goes. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thank you – I was really psyched to go 111 miles more than my goal – that is thanks to a mild December and my boss being on vacation so I got an extra mile in every morning – it all counts in the long run. So next year, I added 80 more miles … just for kicks!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Mackenzie says:

        It’s amazing how all those little extra miles add up, right?! Can’t wait to hear how it goes & follow along your journey!

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Thanks – I hope to add those 80 miles to my 2019 total and get there – bigger goal and more steps … I have to be more inclined to go out in the rain, something I have steered away from so far in my 7 1/2 years of walking. Onward and upward!

        Liked by 1 person

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