The cool weather is back

We have had a great winter so far, so I am not really complaining.

However, it has been pretty nippy the last two days.

My hands got pretty cold standing out by the Cedar Point boat ramp waiting for the sun to set.

Our weather here on the Carolina coast is not really that cold compared to where we lived in Canada.

Still we would all rather have some seventy degree temperatures instead of the upper forties.

I did a couple of unusual things today. First I baked bread and then I made some oatmeal cookies.

This is the fourth loaf in this iteration of my bread baking career which has only be going on for a few weeks.

I did bake bread once in a while in my early days in Canada before I got married.

These days I keep experimenting because I have been unable to find a good bakery here on the Crystal Coast. I love whole wheat bread.

This last loaf got the advantage of cracked wheat to go a long with the oatmeal flakes that I had been using.

We also added some millet which gives the bread a nice crunch. The initial taste this afternoon was very good so I am looking forward to my breakfast toast.

The oatmeal cookies were for my wife who complained that we didn't have any dessert around the house. I made cookies regularly when I lived in Canada on our first farm in Nova Scotia.

This was my first pan of cookies in 35 years so I guess baking cookies hasn't been a priority over the years.

Still it was sort of fun doing something different.

Spring is starting to stand up

We made a quick trip to Beaufort to capture some Marmite for my breakfast toast.

After we made our way across the bridge, we drove down a street with a patch of some freshly mown grass.

Seeing grass being cut in late February reminded me of why I love living in Carteret County.

On an earlier foray we had located Carteret County's only supply of Marmite at the new Coastal Community Market. Fortunately there had not been a run on the Marmite which I consider to be a market of civilization.

My wife has a different opinion and likes to describe it as country ham flavored axle grease.

We turned out to find some other things that I have had on my list for a while.

I bought some cracked wheat and millet for my next loaf of homemade bread. I have gotten frustrated with the lack of a good bakery on the coast. I have taken baking into my hands.

I am enjoying the fruits of my bread baking labor, but I have to be careful not to drop one of my lead loaves on my feet, I might end up in the emergency room.

It has been many years since I baked any bread except with a bread maker. Those long ago years were when we were living in an old farm house on the coast of Nova Scotia.

My wife baked many loaves when we ran our large cattle farm in New Brunswick. She tells me that she is baked out so if I want homemade bread, I have to do it myself.

Still I will get better at it. Kneading dough is very therapeutic thing to do in a challenging real estate market.

I think my bread not rising as much this time was related to buying slow acting yeast and not feeding them any sugar.

Sugar for the yeast is one of those crucial ingredients that wives don't write down. I suspect the info is passed from generation to generation carved on the back of their bread boards.

The next iteration of bread will have to wait for another evening. Tonight I had to get ahead of those sprouts of green showing in my yard. I put some pre-emergent weed killer on so that it would catch tomorrow's rains.

Spring is coming though it will not seem like it on Wednesday and Thursday with a blast of cold air.


Nice sunset on the Point

It was a little cool and breezy yesterday over at the Point.

The winds were not really bad, but as is often the case, I had no coat, and only sandals on my feet.

I knew as soon as I took the pictures that I would have a hard time choosing just one to send to Marvin at WITN.

There were a lot of great pictures, but I got my favorite for the day in at 9:00 pm. It was the first one that they showed on the 11 pm broadcast.

We managed to get three quarters of an inch in rain on Monday morning early with the thunderstorms that moved through the area. At least they waited until 5 am.

Our area has seen reasonable precipitation since the first of the year, but it still does not take the winds long to dry out the dead grasses.

I am hoping we can avoid any wild fires. The one that we saw in Roanoke, VA took a week to control and burned over 4,000 acres.

I did create a neat new map of the area using Google Maps and a service called Map Channels.

Google is amazing. I just wrote up an article on the impact of their tools on Apple.

Pretty nice afternoon in Carteret County

It is nearly impossible to complain about the great weather around here.

A bike ride in the middle of February when you get to wear a tee-shirt and shorts is almost heaven.

We needed the 1.25 inches of rain we got last night, and the rain today held off until after I had finished my late afternoon ride.

On top of that the skies cleared just enough for some great photographs just before dusk.

This weekend we are headed back into the sixties again. There is nothing wrong with the temperature staying in the sixties in February.

That is especially the case since I can hear the weatherman saying that there will be a couple of inches of snow near Richmond tonight.


It was not a day to get in the surf.

I have to say that the surf was really impressive given that the winds were not that bad.

We just got back from a trip to Roanoke, Va where we endured winds close to 70 mph.

On top of that some forest fires got started and have burned thousands of acres.

I guess we are pretty lucky down here. The weather is mild and so far we have not even had a bad nor'easter this winter.

I am sure that our time will come.

Fog hanging around

On Tuesday and Wednesday of this week we have seen some fog slide in at times.

Tuesday afternoon we were at home on the White Oak, and it looked like we were going to have a nice sunset.

It was nice to see the sun since the fog had been hanging around Swansboro and Emerald Isle for most of the day.

We left home in clear skies and before we even made it to Cape Carteret the fog was back.

A little later we stopped at the grocery store for a few things. By the time we headed back home, it was so foggy you could barely see the street lights.

Today we went over to Emerald Isle for lunch. We ran into fog on the bridge but ended up in the sunshine by the time we got to Mike's.

Later we drove down to the Point, and I snapped today's picture of the fog hanging just off the coast.

My guess is that the fog will disappear when the record temperatures take a hike this weekend.

Time to be on the beach

Today was a great day.

We visited the nearby Eastern Regional Access on Emerald Isle.

Surprisingly there were no other vehicles at 5:15 pm when we parked.

It me only a couple of minutes to get down to the water.

For the first time in 2008, I left my shoes up on the steps.

The sand was not that cold. That must have gone to my head since the next I knew my bare feet were in the water.

It might be just a little early for wading, but I did it and my feet did not turn blue.

My guess is that the water temperature is in the fifties, but it is hard to tell if you are only using your feet as a thermometer.

The sunset was not nearly as spectacular as yesterday's golden sunset on Bogue Sound, but I cannot complain.

There was no wind, and we had the beach to ourselves on a very nice February evening.

The even better news is that even warmer temperatures are expected later this week.

I put up an online picture tour of Emerald Isle during the winter.