By: Kristin EmeryBy Kristin Emery


PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — What a beautiful day in the neighborhood! Many viewers have been wondering where I have been and the answer is vacation!

I’m back from a long-planned and wonderful two-week trip to Fiji and Australia, and we have returned happy and healthy and safe. More on that below, along with some cute critter photos from our trip.

Now, as for the weather, this is reason to smile! As I write this on Thursday afternoon, the sun is shining and the temperature is hovering around 64 degrees. That’s almost 10 degrees warmer than normal for us in Pittsburgh this time of year.

Here’s a pretty pic of one of my geraniums on my sun porch. I put them inside during winter and they go dormant. Now, they’re already starting to flower in the sunshine!

(Source: Kristin Emery)

Our average high today is 53 and we inched just above that Wednesday with a high of 55. My neighbor is actually mowing his lawn right now! I am not ready for that chore yet, but it is coming soon with warm temps lingering. The warmth will stick around all the way through the weekend with highs the next few days topping out in the mid- to upper-60s!

If you need a nice dose of sunshine or want to get outdoors for a walk, do it this afternoon and early evening because the rest of the week and weekend look pretty soggy. Clouds build tonight with rain following after midnight into early Friday.

We could see about a half inch of rain the next 24 hours. Then, the really soggy part arrives. Rain lingers Saturday and it could be heavy at times with totals ranging in the 1-2 inch area. We’ll have to watch for flooding concerns, so this is a good time to download our KDKA weather app to get up to the minute notifications, warnings and be able to see our live, interactive radar.

Spring (and it’s officially here now) means severe weather season, and we could have a storm or two reach severe limits Saturday with the biggest threats being damaging winds and possible flooding. Sunday dries out a little and much drier air arrives to start next week along with some cooler temperatures.

Saturday could see a storm or two become strong to severe with damaging winds and the aforementioned flooding being the biggest concerns from severe storms. At least this weekend will be warm with temperatures flirting with the 70s. Next week looks a bit brighter, but cooler. Here is a look at what our Futurecast model is seeing for rain totals through Sunday morning.

(photo Credit: KDKA)

If the sunshine has not lifted your spirits enough, here is something that will hopefully make you smile…

(Source: Kristin Emery)

These koalas live at the Taronga Zoo in Sydney, Australia, which we visited on our last day in Sydney before flying home last week. I arrived home last Sunday a few days earlier than planned due to the COVID-19 virus travel restrictions and airline changes. I have been staying at home since and am working from home for the next several days just as a precaution.

As of this writing, Fiji has only two cases and Australia about the same number of cases country-wide as we do here just in the state of Pennsylvania. They are not areas of concern and so we were not quarantined upon our return. My travel companions and I are all well and are self-isolating out of precaution, but so far everyone is fine! We kept abreast of the situation while still enjoying our trip.

Tom Hanks and his wife were diagnosed in Australia while we were there and the first case in Cairns was diagnosed just before we left.

(Source: Kristin Emery)

We planned our trip to Fiji and Australia 10 months ago and went ahead with plans armed with masks, Clorox wipes and hand sanitizer. We went scuba diving in Fiji and on the Great Barrier Reef in Australia (I even found Nemo, the clownfish and many of his friends!) Sydney is a gorgeous, wide open city with beautiful architecture such as the Sydney Opera House.

(Source: Kristin Emery)

(Source: Kristin Emery)

And, of course, the Sydney Harbor Bridge, which we climbed at sunset our second day there!

(Source: Kristin Emery)

(Source: Kristin Emery/Bridgeclimb Sydney)

(Source: Kristin Emery/Bridgeclimb Sydney)

Here are some more iconic furry friends from the Taronga Zoo, including a wallaby…

(Source: Kristin Emery)

…and, of course, a kangaroo!!

(Source: Kristin Emery)

I hope these photos will give your spirit a lift in these stressful times. Enjoy today’s sunshine and the warmth and we will keep you posted through the weekend as to flooding and storm concerns on KDKA and right here on KDKA.com, as well as our social media outlets.

Have a great day!

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