When I was growing up in NW Indiana, there was an old phrase saying…’we’re waiting for the January Thaw.” Usually the bitter cold arrived in mid-December and stayed well into January. There would be a brief warm up where for several days highs would get back above freezing before more bitter cold returned for much of February. Here we are still in December and folks up north are complaining about the below zero chill. Based on what the models are showing, the first 2 weeks of January will continue cold with maybe some moderation after that. Locally, NWS has issued a hard freeze watch for the North Shore & a freeze watch for the South Shore. Computer guidance is colder today with the North Shore projected to drop to 15-20 on Tuesday & Wednesday AM with the South Shore 20-25. This would be the coldest in several years and will cause significant damage to unprotected plants and pipes. I finished making my precautions today and even took a photo of my lush yard. I’m sure after this freeze I’ll be doing a lot of pruning. One thing I always do before a freeze is place covers over my outside faucets. Home Depot & Lowe’s offer these at very inexpensive prices. You still have time on Sunday to finalize preparations before the cold sets in Sunday night into Monday. It appears we’ll have at least 3 straight nights of below freezing temperatures, maybe 4. I love wearing turtlenecks & sweaters and heavy coats…NOT! But I will not complain knowing that in another 6-8 weeks we’ll be flirting with 80. Enjoy the chill my friends. Stay tuned!