Thursday, December 27, 2007

One of My Hobbies

Kansas weather keeps me busy most of the time, but I still find time to enjoy other things besides weather. I discovered wood working about 2 years ago and I have completed two big projects and a few smaller ones on the side. Last year, I found some plans for a park bench and decided to make it a Christmas present. This year, I came up with my own design and decided to make a toy box for my new nephew, Wade.

Here are some pictures of the completed project. I don't normally consider myself to be a crafty individual, but this time around, I stumbled on some good ideas and followed through with them, only to be surprised at how good it looked in the end. I used Jute (looks like rope) for the handles on the box, and found some other rope to write his name on the lid. I'm not very good at picking out baby clothes, so I decided to make something instead. It was a really good Christmas and I hope it was for you as well.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Wishing You A Merry Christmas

I just wanted to wish everyone a Merry Christmas. Here is the Christmas card that Millie and I had taken here in the KWCH studios. In my spare time, I've been doing some wood working projects for Christmas presents and I'll post some pictures of them after the holiday. They turned out better than I expected (because my wood working talent is nowhere close to Bob Villa's).

If you've been dreaming of a white Christmas, well, we finally had our dream come true. It is only a 10% chance each year that Wichita has a white Christmas, but this year we luck out and will have snow for the holiday. In fact, we might be adding to the snowfall on Tuesday with another system dropping in from the west.

I'm off to celebrate the holiday, but will be back on the air Thursday. Have a good Christmas.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

It's the Holiday Season... Busy Times

This blog entry is full of pictures because there is so much going on at this time of the year and I wanted to share it with you. First, I had a great opportunity to ride around in a limo Monday night and check out some of the Christmas lights around town. I have to say I'm a little amazed at how many people don't decorate anymore, but the limo ride was fun and it was cold Monday night... which is why we are all huddled together in this picture.

A faithful blogger, Ty, sent me some pictures of Christmas lights around town. I'm posting two of them here and, the first one is from the College Hill area and the second is from Market street. Some people work hard to decorate for the holidays... just like Clark Griswold in Christmas Vacation. It is my favorite holiday movie.

Finally, I had a chance to visit Beech Elementary school Wednesday afternoon. Thanks to Ron Hobert for inviting me to the school and as always, the kids had some very good questions. One little girl was asking about the static electricity that always seems to catch us off guard when reaching for the light switch. Maybe I'll explain the answer in another entry.
Well, it's time to finish some last minute shopping and then wrap the presents. I'm not very good at wrapping, so if someone would like to wrap them for me, I'd probably let them. I'll be back on Saturday! Millie and I have a Christmas picture. I'll post it this weekend, so check back for it!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Enough Winter... And It Hasn't Started

We've had an active week of winter weather here in Kansas and well, we are still technically in the fall season. Winter starts this week on December 22nd at 12:08 a.m. local time.

The snow storm turned out to be a big event for the same areas that were hit pretty hard by the ice storm earlier in the week. This map is the same one we've been showing on the air and you can't miss the 12" bulls eye that occurred in central Kansas. We don't realize how much we take electricity for granted until we don't have it for a week.... not that I lost power or anything, but my family in southern Ellsworth county was still without power at last check.
How is your holiday shopping going? I've cut back on the number of people to buy for this year, so I'm just about finished. I have to say, online shopping is very nice and it is very convenient.
Thanks to everyone who is helping clean up after the ice storm and restore power. It is amazing how Kansans come together after a big storm to help out. Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Pictures Tell the Story

The pictures have been coming in from the latest ice storm and they are worth a 1,000 words. They are a reminder of how bad winter storms in the central Plains can be, and for those that went through the January 2005 ice storm, it is a reminder of the nightmare we had almost 3 years ago.

Going from left to right, the first picture is from Great Bend, Hutchinson, Logan, Stafford, and finally, Salina. Thanks to everyone for sending in pictures of the ice. Above freezing temperatures are expected for Thursday, so let the melting begin. We do have another storm coming Friday, but this one will not have ice, but maybe some light snow for the area. Details will be coming in another blog entry.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Choosing the Right Words

Okay, so another round of wintry weather is coming and this one will be very significant. What we know for sure is there will be precipitation in Kansas beginning Monday and continuing into Wednesday morning. The uncertainty that we have tonight is in the surface temperatures. We could see temperatures around 32 on Tuesday, which may reduce some of the ice accumulations. Either way, this looks like a significant winter storm and we will be tracking it the next few days. Merril is off this week, so I'll be here to answer any questions that you might have. As much as we want to say this is going to be just as bad as January 2005 ice storm, we have to be careful to choose the right words and not force you into a panic that the world is ending with this ice storm. Just plan and be prepared for the worst, and hope that it doesn't turn out as bad as 3 years ago.

Send me an email if you have questions about the storm, and I'll try and follow up with you.

I attended the Trans Siberian Orchestra concert Friday night out at the Kansas Coliseum. It was a great concert and the music was very good. If you attended the concert, you know what I'm talking about. Have a good week (aside from any ice that we might get)

Thursday, December 6, 2007

More Wintry Weather Coming

I am enjoying a few extra days away from work, but I am still watching the developments of this prolonged winter storm. Take a look at the image attached. This is one of our computer models showing the storm dropping deep into the Southwest and staying there until Wednesday of next week. What is going on here?

This huge upper low pressure system is drawing in Pacific moisture that is running into cold air down near the ground. This is an ideal set up for sleet and freezing rain, so traveling across the area the next several days could be dangerous. Some of the heaviest precipitation may come Sunday into early Tuesday, some of which may be snow in the western part of Kansas, while southcentral and eastern Kansas may end up with ice. Send me an email, if you have questions about the storm. Even while away from work, I'll still try and answer whatever you throw my way. Travel safely the next several days.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Several Changes Ahead

We had some weird weather this weekend from 60s on Saturday to 30s and 40s on Sunday. It would have been nice to steal some more moisture from that Saturday storm, but unfortunately, we missed out. I think we would rather be dry than deal with the ice that Omaha had this weekend. Several areas to the north had up to .5 inches of ice accumulation.

The weather pattern is already changing as I write this entry. High pressure is developing out to our west, so warmer air is going to be with us for a few days. The cold air is pulling back to the north, but it won't stay there too long. We expect some of that cold air to come back in on Wednesday. And, there could be another weak system coming through Wednesday into Thursday, which may very well drag some moisture across Kansas during that time. It looks like rain for southern Kansas, but it could mix with wet snow across the north. It will not be a big storm though, just another chance for a little moisture.
Have a great week!

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