Fire and Ice

By Patti Parish-Kaminski, Publisher

Really, Texas? Did you have to kill every stem of floral and fauna in my yard this winter – again?

All right Texas. You and I got to have a talk. I’ll go first, because here we are starting 2023, and I just want to make sure we are on the same page. Here’s basically how the month of December went down at my house.

I left you – Texas – sportin’ a balmy 70 degrees in mid-December. I realize that’s how you roll many Decembers, so I had no issue with you. Just as I crossed the state line headed west with no intention or inclination to return for a couple of weeks, you changed your fickle mind and plummeted to temps that are not becoming to this particular part of you. Teen temps – particularly for days on end – do not look good on you in your Southeast region. By the time I came back to you January 2nd, I was surrounded by death and destruction – all your doin’.

Honestly, I thought you had learned your lesson with Winter Storm Uri and the havoc it reeked on your people and your infrastructure down here, but apparently, this wacky winter weather conversation needs to be revisited.

Here’s the rub, Texas. We know to prepare for drought; we have that down. July and August are hell, and we air condition everything we can to survive, because we know you’re coming for us. Hurricane season is a thing. We’ve suffered through them, but we know the drill and have learned our lesson. We realize that you change your mind incessantly when it comes to your weather woes, and we’ve learned to cope. We know we can leave the house in the morning in shorts and need an overcoat by the end of the day. We know that a sunshiny morning can turn on a dime into an afternoon of tumultuous thunderstorms. We know how to navigate your floods – ice, not so much. It’s the curve snowball we have trouble with, and it needs to stop. This disastrous deviation in your pattern is not in our nature – nor should it be in yours. Now we’re accustomed to your mood swings, and I believe we cope very well given your nature. It makes you hard to love at times, but nonetheless, we persevere and love you regardless.

But honestly, my friend, you have got to get this extended frigid frostbite foray out of your system. It helps no one. We have replanted from your last frozen fit, and now, you’ve killed all of our floral and fauna once again. We’ve installed drought-resistant plants for your unforgivable summers, and now, you’ve killed them all off with your icy intentions. So, are we now supposed to incorporate both ice-resistant AND drought-resistant species in our landscape? What exactly does that look like?

I’m thinking rocks, lots of rocks. They can withstand both the fire and the ice. Of course, I’ll have to let Mr. Kaminski know I want the shiny, glittery ones for our yard. He’ll love that, I’m sure. I may even slip over to Susie Goff’s and “borrow” a couple of her flamingos. I hear they are quite weather resistant, and she has so many, she’ll never miss one or two.

One thing is for sure, Texas. I’m not falling for the, “Azaleas and gardenias flourish in your Southeast region” spiel any more from the landscape folks. Clearly, they don’t know you like I do. See y’all next week – on the porch!

Patti Parish-Kaminski

Follow Patti Parish-Kaminski on Facebook at and on Instagram at