Monday, November 28, 2016

Battening down the hatches

For some time now, we've been anticipating the first significant snowfall. We had a dusting a while back, but nothing big. But yesterday's weather called for a dump of the white stuff.

And although it threatened here and there to make that dump imminent... didn't really start snowing until about midnight.

So yesterday I took the opportunity to do some cleanup around the driveway area. We know from past experience how annoying it is to have the ground covered in snow for six months, then after it melts find missing tools, assorting boards, and all the other flotsam and jetsam around a farm.

I started by scrubbing out the cows' water tank. This had gotten overgrown with muck sliming the sides and bottom.

This tank had a float valve on it all summer and fall, a handy device that keeps the tank perpetually full. But we can't use it in the winter because the hose connecting to the water tap will freeze.

I drained the tank and gave it a good scrubbing...

...then filled it with fresh clean water. We'll also put in a tank heater to keep it from freezing.

I went around the area picking up random assorted debris. Some if this is trash, some goes on a burn pile, and some gets piled near the shop so we can chop it into burnable lengths for the woodstove.

This is stuff for the burn pile. We'll burn next spring.

This old rotten hay bale probably weight 150 lbs from all the water it had absorbed. It got pitched on the burn pile too.

I anchored things that could get flipped in the wind with heavier objects.

I drained and coiled all the hoses, and stacked them in the barn. Don and I also folded and put away assorted tarps.

Despite a freezing wind, I also went out and picked the peas that were ripe.

Yes, these amazing peas were still clinging on. I just had to accept the fact that they weren't going to ripen any further.

It was a fairly small haul for a second planting, but hey, it was an experiment. I'm happy to get any.

This morning we found it had snowed about four inches. For Younger Daughter, who is working in Coeur d'Alene, it was her first time driving in snow. She left when it was barely light.

As is typical, the chickens didn't know what to make of all that white stuff on the ground. The half-grown birds, particularly, had never seen snow before. They refused to leave the coop.

Everything looks very wintery now!

The snow is quiet and pretty and peaceful. Yesterday's cleanup efforts seem far away and even unnecessary (though I'm glad they're done). Until the snow melts, we'll enjoy the transformed world around us.


  1. Duct tape - the scythe man's friend! - lol

  2. Looks like my house. I should perhaps let my hens out but with the snow and wind they just look out and shake their heads when the BS (blowing snow) goes in! Plus the drifts are one to two feet in their run. I don't know what they'd think. Natokadn

  3. Let the snow begin. Been watching to Idaho highway cams in your area, looking somewhat like winter.
    Sure no snow here in they Yakima valley, 57 out there right now. That is to change from this day forward. Have the snow blower mounted on one tractor and loader and rear blade on the other. We would like to see a good hard snow. No snow no irrigation water.
    Take care and keep warm.

  4. Looks lovely. We have friends who just moved to Post Falls, they were expecting snow. I know it's a hassle, but it sure is pretty.

  5. We are just east of you but we didn't get a flake. Weird.

  6. I just have to make a comment on your banner photos. You dear lady have a wonderful eye! I have always enjoyed your photos they are just so beautiful. Thank you!

  7. Beautiful pic of your world.
    We have mud and the hills have snow.
    Enjoy your beauty.

  8. I always liked winter - Snow is Gods way of saying, take a rest - puts the world to sleep for a winters nap and come springtime, back at er again. The best thing about snow is you don't have to shovel it, really, cause in the spring it'll melt anyway.... So chill and enjoy playing in/on it, read a bunch of good books and rest up for the rest of the year when you have to prepare for winter again..... the never ending cycle.....

  9. Honey, where are the tire chains? They are under what???!!!
    Montana Guy

  10. du u stil ned a genset 4 ur wel? nsr to milo

  11. Could you try composting that hay bale?

    1. Oh heavens -- we have so much compost, literally tons of it, that one hay bale doesn't make a difference. Easier to burn it.

      - Patrice

  12. Your hose pile looks a lot like ours. Years ago, I started connecting the ends of the hose to it's mate on the other end. One year before I started doing that, I connected a hose to the hydrant and turned it on, only to flush out a whole nest of baby mice.