The side of my house during the blizzard.

Hey, everyone — it’s been a crazy few days here in DC.  Much of the East Coast of the US got buried by the Blizzard of 2016 (called Snowzilla by the Washington Post.)  They’re still arguing about the snow totals because apparently the dopes at the airport forgot how to measure snow, but unofficially this is probably the second biggest snowstorm after the 1922 Knickerbocker storm.

As a mostly lifelong resident of the area, I can remember the big ones.  And this was definitely up there.  I’m grateful that our power stayed on, and that my two oldest (one in rural VA and one in NYC) are safe and sound, and that despite a lot of coastal property damage, in terms of loss of life it could have been a lot worse, and it wasn’t.


Fat Stanley the Maltese and Lila the poodle checking out the walkway trenches we dug.

I’m whipped.  I have shoveled a lot of snow.  I am too old for this, I tell ya.  But I got out there and shoveled.  I shoveled through 3 – 4 feet of snowpack along our front walkway, along the sidewalks… dug out a patch for the dogs out back.  You just get through it, you know?  I was prepared — flashlights, extra food, etc.  I’m not going to lie, I was nervous.  It’s times like these I miss having a man around to help out with the heavy lifting.  But the twins stepped up, particularly Buckethead.  They’re thirteen.  It’s funny what you can get through if you put your mind to it.

The federal government is closed for the second day, and school’s out.  I’m going to take some ibuprofen and a hot shower and count my blessings.  I’ve been chatting about gardening with Anita because it’s nice to look forward to digging in the dirt in the spring.  Out there, under all that snow, my garden is waiting.


All dug out and nowhere to go.

Anyhoo, I’m around.  Chat about anything you want to, and I’ll stop by and check in.  Cheers.


  • Swingsidesmile says:

    DC area? My parents live in suburban MD and haven’t been out of the house since Friday, and my mother, who always has a freezer full of backup food, is irrationally worried they’ll go hungry. They are both working from home for the government, though :-/ Stay safe! Your puppies are adorable.

    • March says:

      Thanks! We follow OPM rules as well (although it’s a nonprofit) but I’ve got some stuff that needs to be done and I’m near the city/Metro so I’m most likely going in. We basically dug ourselves out but everyone has to walk to the store.

  • Sun Mi says:

    Ugh, the shoveling! It never ends. I’m also really thankful that we didn’t lose power here in MD – everyone was expecting power loss with the blizzard winds, but fortunately we’re at least still cozy and warm. 🙂

    • March says:

      Absolutely. The sun’s streaming in my window, the dogs are napping on the bed, I’ve got lunch in the oven…. this would be sooooo miserable without heat. I don’t mind as much in the summer (no A/C) but this is a goofy old house with no insulation and it gets cold quick!

  • March…how come I didn’t realize that you were in the DC area. Actually, I’m not surprised because I am consistently oblivious to the world around me. Another day off of work…actually getting tired of being cooped up, but the big cat sitting on my lap is ecstatic with the developments of the last few days. Greetings from Alexandria….just remember, spring is less than 90 days away!!! Steve

    • March says:

      Howdy neighbor! I’m in Bethesda… there are a number of perfumistas in the area. If we had somewhere great to go, we could all get together… yeah, I’m tired of being cooped up as well. I just took a walk, it’s pretty nice out there, although not as warm and sunny as yesterday.

      • Have you been over to Arielle Shoshana yet? I spoke to Ari and told her that we need to have a get together, event at the store. It would be fun. Yes, I am going to walk to the grocery store in a bit. Never thought going to Safeway would be so exciting 🙂

        • March says:

          No, didn’t a buncho DC folks go a month or two ago? I remember the invite and I had some conflict (I think a boy scout thing.)

        • Alison says:

          Hi! Alison here surviving Snowzilla in Falls Church City. I looked up Arielle Shoshana and saw that it is (almost) walking distance from my house. When did it open? I am at Mosaic District fairly often. Must explore! There have been several stores that have come and gone in the blink of an eye there, hope this one makes it

  • Sherri M. says:

    Love your dogs! I have a Maltese puppy, too, and used to have a poodle (I cannot tell you how much I miss her!) It’s hard on the little dogs to go to the bathroom when the snow is taller on them!

    We “only” got seven inches here in Nashville which is a blizzard for us. I grew up in Pennsylvania where snow is not such a big deal, but down here they just can’t handle the snow. They don’t have enough trucks to plow the residential roads and everything just basically shuts down which is good because Southern drivers (please forgive me if I offend anyone! 🙂 ) are notoriously horrible in the snow! Schools were closed all but one day last week, plus yesterday, and I am typing this while waiting thru a two hour delay for my youngest. It’s been a big party for the teens, who actually went outside sledding and built snowmen, etc. Even businesses shut down so everyone was home and able to have fun! I do feel for you with the shovelling tho! Winter’s fun for one day, but I am too old to deal with the snow shoveling, getting up half an hour early to clean off the car, etc. One snowfall is enough, and I’m ready for Spring!

    Now, once I get my youngest to school (2 hr. delay), we’ll be back to normal, and I have the aftermath (we put cleaning on the back burner) to clean up. Winter does also give us a chance to bring out some of our best perfumes. I never have enough cold weather to wear all the good ones, it seems!

    • March says:

      Maltese are so cute. He’s on the big side for a Maltese, but still pretty small, and he’s so funny and smart. I didn’t really know that. Seven inches in Nashville sounds like a nightmare, they have basically zero snow removal stuff, I’m guessing. Yes, it’s pretty messy in here, it looks like a hardware store downstairs (I bring the shovels in so they don’t get stolen) plus snowpants and boots and mittens everywhere. Really looking forward to this melting.

  • Ann says:

    Howdy, March! So glad you and all your chicks are OK. It was bad but as you say, really could have been much worse. Having power makes all the difference, doesn’t it? We only got a light dusting down here, but after getting walloped (literally and figuratively) a year or two ago, the governor’s been busy shoring up the emergency resources so we won’t get caught unawares again. BTW, Stanley is a cutie!

  • poodle says:

    Shockingly we got through this storm with only a couple inches. It didn’t track north enough. While I feel bad for those who got slammed, I’m tickled pink that we didn’t get it because I’m still sore from last winter up here. I know we’ll get ours soon enough this winter. I’m happy you didn’t lose power. It’s easier to bear these storms when you can be warm and able to cook and live normally even if you’re stuck in the house.
    I have a Stanley too! He’s a standard poodle and he loves the snow until it gets to a depth that he can’t run around in. Then he’s not happy at all. I hope you get some melting this week. Keep thinking about that gardening to get you through. I’m doing the same thing. Soon enough we will be complaining about weeds and bugs.

    • March says:

      Stanley! He’s a recent addition, he’s from Florida. NOT loving this snow, he’s just too small. His name took forever, we couldn’t agree…. then my daughter pointed out he does this Army crawl on his belly, said he looked like Flat Stanley from the children’s book. And thus we get Fat Stanley (although he’s less of a chunk than he was, thanks to my careful home cooking.) And his coat and skin are growing in nicely after a couple of months, he has/had allergies and a skin condition I’ve been working on holistically.

      I made a promise to myself at the beginning that I would NOT complain as long as we didn’t lose power, which makes everything so very much worse.

      Gonna clean up the yard, mulch heavy, and plant a climbing rose next to my front porch.

  • cinnamon says:

    We’re due to get your storm as rain from about 11 AM today. As the ground is already saturated that could mean floods … again. It’s not been as bad here as some years, but the north of the UK has suffered badly. So, here’s to the storm passing east very quickly. The year I left the US (1997) we had a big snowstorm on the East Coast in January. Two feet. I remember walking home from Boro Hall station in Brooklyn to Carroll Gardens Took two hours through the empty, gloriously beautiful and quiet streets.

    • March says:

      This was the second worst snowstorm in NYC history. There’s some great photos of old NY snowstorms on line, i’m going to post a link for you. I hope it passes through quick for you and doesn’t do much damage!

  • Dina C. says:

    Here at our house, the four of us are achey from shoveling, too. Over on the Virginia side of the Beltway, we got 27 inches in our front yard. It’s hard to measure exactly because the wind blew it around a lot. We were also very fortunate not to lose heat or power.

    For fun, i’ve been re-reading Perfume the Guide and bringing all my margin notes up to date (check marks for things I’ve sniffed, plus my verdicts).

  • HeidiC says:

    Glad you and your family came through relatively unscathed! Yes, it could have been a lot worse. From all my east coast friends on FB, it seems mostly like a huge snow removal job, but not devastating. I know a lot of people here in the Upper Midwest are scoffing, but I grew up in North Carolina — I know that when you don’t get snow like this very often, you just don’t have the infrastructure for dealing with it.

    So…what are you most looking forward to planting in the garden? I don’t know what kind of yard situation I’m going to end up with when we move to Minneapolis, but I’m hoping I can at least plant an herb garden. I like to fondle pretty-smelling plants and cook with them.

    • March says:

      ’tis true. Maybe this seems like a regular snow in Chicago or Minneapolis, but we don’t own the snow equipment for this, because it doesn’t make fiscal sense. So when we get whacked it takes longer. Overall I feel like they’re doing their best.

      I just renewed my lease for three years (yay!) So some of my inertia/uncertainty re the garden is gone, and I’m willing to spend a bit more money since I’m staying. I want to take out the fig trees since the growing season is too short. Going to plant a pretty climbing rose next to my front porch. I want to do an herb garden too! I have a sweet little spot picked out.