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Ooooh, I've got the January Blues... OY. Not only have we heard of many, many celebrity deaths, but January so far has been one tough month. The East Coast suffered through a truly terrible blizzard, too. Luckily, the snow bypassed us here in the Mitten. We've gotten whomped before, so I'm rather glad we don't have to dig out.

Yeah, that's the aftermath of the infamous 2011 Groundhog Day blizzard that hit the United States. The storm stretched from Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Iowa, Missouri, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, New York, and don't forget Canada! To the left, you can see the line of cars stranded for hours on Lakeshore Drive in Chicago. Lots of people lost power. It was one of the biggest storms in history. Crazy!

So, last week a monster storm called Jonas hit the East Coast. Hoo boy, it started on a Saturday and piled up the snow (depending on where you lived) from George, Tennessee, North Carolina, Kentucky, Virginia and West Virginia, eastern Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey - which also suffered terrible flooding on the coast - New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts. Lake effect snow also fell in Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan. AND Canada, of course.

So why didn't the Groundhog Day blizzard get a cool name, like Winter Storm Phil? Named for Punxsutawney Phil, that famous fat woodchuck - or whistlepig - names for the large ground squirrel with no discernable psychic ability to predict the weather by its shadow. Remember that come February 2nd. How neat if that 2011 blizzard had been named Winter Storm Whistlepig? But the Weather Channel only began naming winter storms in 2012. Dang.

Hey, I'm just glad February is almost here. As for Groundhog Day, I'd rather watch the hilarious movie with Bill Murray. The setting, the townspeople, the redo's of each day are truly memorable.

Even Phil takes a spin in the film. Not the real Phil, of course. He had a stunt double. Bit Bill Murray, too.

Unfortunately, February is one day extra - being a Leap Year - so that means winter is gonna stick around for another 24 hours. At least. If not six to eight weeks after February 2nd. Sigh.

Here's a few photos to cheer you up until spring. Florida, Hawaii, Antigua... aaaaaaaaaaaaah.....

Now weren't those nicer than this one? Although it's pretty neat, in it's own way.

Those windshield wipers are on my friend Eleanor Cawood Jones's car. Buried in snow. Yup. She lives in good ole Virginia, where summers are warm, and winters are mild... ahem. Thanks, Ellie, for letting me use the photo. At least you'll always remember this winter (ducks thrown shovel).

If you're in the mood for a few books with winter themes, here's a few! The Key to Love has the Groundhog Day Blizzard, The Keys to the Holidays includes that novella PLUS the sequel, and Eleanor's book, Death is Coming to Town, has four short tales of murder. Fun reads, all of them!

Click here for Meg

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