Sunday, November 24, 2013


We were stuck in an uncommon deep freeze for most of the week. I mean really really cold. -35C with the windchill for two days! Paul was away on business for all of those chilly days so it was up to me to hold down the fort.

I was really worried about the dogs. How could they possibly tolerate this relentless cold? I spent the better part of three days bundling myself up and going out to check their ears and their foot pads. Each time I would put my fingers in their now thick fur they felt warm. They were playing, they were wagging their tails. I tried to bring them in the house to warm up (which Paul says is a very bad idea) and I couldn't even get them in the door. I took it as a good sign. Nonetheless, I made them pots of basmati rice and oatmeal and even gave them some of my precious homemade chicken broth. I put out some straw bales in the places they like to sit and sleep during the day. This they appreciated very much.

The weekend brought with it warm weather. Our temperature is at 3C and snow is melting from the roof of the house. The dogs are basking in the sun, panting away, trying to stay cool. We worked and worked some more outside on Saturday and today we went for a walk in our woods.

We have lived here 5 months now and I have made some observations:

  • When Paul is home I can be outside in the dark without a worry. When he is away and I put the dogs to bed in the evening I practically run back to the house with my 2ft long flashlight/billy club clenched tightly in my fist.
  • We have seen very little mammalian wildlife since we got the dogs but with a groundcover of snow we see evidence they actually live here. The woods were full of prints today. Squirrel, fox, deer, and rabbit. I am sure I'll see plenty of mammal predators when the chickens arrive.
  • Hunting season is kind of scary. As I walk through the woods these past two months I imagine what would happen if I were shot dead and all before I even get my chickens! We wear bright colors and make some noise so hunters won't mistake us for deer.

  • I really appreciate this homestead of ours. I hope to never take for granted the beauty and seclusion and wonder of it all.
  • The dogs MUST howl back at the coyotes at least 4 times a day, even if it is in the middle of the night.
  • I have found some old fencing in the woods which still stands in good shape. It is in just the exact place I plan to put a goat or two. Paul says we aren't getting goats, (but I am sure we will).
  • If I am ever tired or have a headache or just not up to par I can head outside for and hour our two and all is well again.
  • Even though I am outside working or walking or playing with the dogs on a daily basis, I really do need to get back to my yoga practice.
  • Most recently in my observations I realized that I do so need to start looking after myself better. I have to stop having potato chips for lunch and eat more fruits and vegetables. Winter tomatoes taste like nothing! I froze a bunch of organic kale and stocked up on blueberries and plain yogurt. The pantry is full of walnuts and almonds. I think a week of smoothies is in order!
  • And last but not least I know that I am living the life I have always meant to live and I have absolutely nothing to complain about! Life is beautiful.

(someone has been working too hard and deserves this afternoon nap)


Tara said...

Isn't is amazing how animals can brave the bitter cold? I've been worried about our chickens too this week and had Ron put some more insulation in their coop and cover over some places where the wind can get in. So far everyone is happy though -even my two senior gals! They love their "tea" in the morning - hot water with some apple cider vinegar.

The snow is so pretty where you are and I love your self portraits lately!

Dawn said...

I love reading about your life on the homestead. You just seem so happy and content. Those dogs are impressive. They must have wonderfully thick fur. My dog is not a tough dog. She doesn't even want to go outside when it's raining!