Tuesday, April 4, 2023

Last bit of winter

I woke up at about 4:45 am yesterday morning to a distant beeping. "Power's out," I mumbled to Don. The beeping was the sound of the backup battery on his computer. He stumbled out of bed, turned off his computer (which stays in a state of hibernation overnight), and came back to bed.

But I was covering for a coworker yesterday, so I had to get ready to do my job without electricity. I can start working whenever I get up, so I got up at 5 am. (That's what comes from being an early bird.)

Why did the power to go? No idea, but we're getting a last blast of winter and received about five inches of wet heavy snow overnight. Doubtless a branch came down on a power line somewhere. If there's one thing we've learned since moving to our new (to us) home, it's that every snowfall is an excuse for the power the go out. Accordingly, we've put all sorts of backups in place.

Take this LED camping lantern, for example. We got some of these last year and they've proved to be excellent: very bright, and chargeable by a number of methods (electricity, solar, hand-cranked, etc.).

I also lit an oil lamp. This provided light at both ends of the house.

I used a barbecue lighter to light the propane stove and get the kettle started for tea.

Once the water was hot, I poured my tea, refilled the kettle, and set it on the woodstove. Unless it's cold enough to keep the fire going all night (and it wasn't), I always prepare the wood cookstove the night before for a fast light in the morning. I lit the fire to warm the house, and put the tea kettle on to heat water for when Don got up.

I plugged my laptop into the battery backup we keep on hand for just such an occasion. Used solely for my laptop, there's enough juice in this backup battery to let me work for several days.

Then I plugged the wireless hotspot into my USB port to provide internet, and got to work.

But the outside was too pretty to ignore. I know it's April and we should be looking for spring flowers, but winter wasn't ready to let go.

A neighbor's horse was in high spirits. 

The goldfinches seemed grateful for the easy breakfast.

You can see the buildup of snow on the pines.

Then I saw something amusing. Way down in the valley, a tom turkey, puffed up like a Spanish grandee, was strutting his stuff for the ladies.

Can't stop those hormones, no matter what the weather.


  1. This will be the new normal for more and more Americans. Not just those in rural communities but for everyone including big cities, especially Democrat run cities in Democrat run states. Everyone should prepare for loss of electric, water even gas. Everyone needs a back up plan and a power out kit/bag. I would recommend storing some foods that can be eaten with minimal or no power needs and alternative heating and cooking backup.

  2. Those pictures are , as usual , very beautiful. One of our greatest gifts is to simply enjoy the day. To see the beauty and allow it to refresh our hearts.
    Hot and muggy down south. It was 91 inside my house when I decided to turn the ac on late yesterday morning. That long side of the house gets sun all day. More of the same today, then it'll drop about 20 degrees for about a week.
    We all need multiple power sources. And backups to the backups for every necessity no matter where we live. We also need the ability to just dwell with our Creator and His unlimited power. Those pictures depict His loving, gentle, enduring power.

  3. Good examples of being prepared for power outages. We received just over 8 inches last Friday night, really hoping that was the last time to crank up the snow thrower.

  4. what is the make & model of your computer back up battery? (Shadowfaxhound)

    1. The battery is called an "All Powers" Portable Power Station, model #AP-SS-007

      - Patrice

  5. The snow is beautiful even if it is April. I need a power supply for my laptop and a hotspot.