Tuesday, February 4, 2014

When people blog about gardens and spring in winter

 Ok. I admit it.  I dreamed - and then wrote - about spring and planting way too early.  Any hopes I had of planting early spinach and pruning my raspberries this week have now been dashed. Patience, I tell myself...patience.

Here on the farm, I know the temperatures are dipping when I find Clyde sleeping on the hot tub cover.

Another sign that it's nippier than normal is when I bring in kindling for the fire and all the chickens rush to the door wanting to come in and get warm.

For mild-weather northwestern Oregonians, when temperatures drop to the teens, it's a pretty big deal.  We just aren't accustomed to being that cold and it requires a great deal of panic and freaking out  preparation to ready for it.

Fortunately, I've got my beyond-reasonably-cold farm routine down pat and this morning was the time to run through it.

Roxy insisted on wearing her favorite pink sweater for this morning's chores, but casually mentioned on her way to the barn that she is going to need some matching pink boots if she is going to work with me any more this week.

Once at the barn, I alerted Mr. Goldy, the stock tank goldfish (see the orange blob in the water above?), that we wouldn't be having our morning chats for a few days.  He's cool with it.  He doesn't seem to mind at all when the sky over his head completely freezes over for days at a time.

I made sure the heat tape wrapped around the water pipe was turned on and I put my handmade insulator (bungee cord and loose insulation) around the outdoor spigot.

I pulled the heated water bucket back out of storage and connected it to the lengthy extension cord that is once again running across the barn floor.

I made sure the bedding in Kai llama's stall got some fluffy new straw.

Kai insisted on inspecting my work.

She is always very thorough.

Shy Clyde surprised me by coming into the barn for a bite to eat while I was there.

But she quickly retreated (flew?) when I got too close with my camera.

I turned to find Chester behind me.  He wanted to know if he could do anything to help.
Just kidding.  He actually had some complaints about the quality of hay I've been serving and wished to request a bucket of chilled carrot coins for his mid-afternoon snack.

(I'll get right on that, Chet.)

When we got back to the house, Roxy informed me she had changed her mind about the winter boots.  She has decided to spend the rest of the week right here.


  1. "Increasing East wind 70 - 100 mph" ? Is that a hurricane or a typo?

  2. Smart girl, that Roxie. 70-100? Bit blustery, I'd say. Hang on. Stay warm as you can.

  3. I'm leaving everything as is here, counting on a short-lived cold spell that doesn't freeze everything up for long. We'll see. Thanks for visiting today!

  4. You sure look like you are getting well prepared for you cold spell. I don't blame Roxy for wanting to stay indoors. Stay safe and warm.

  5. One state over here in Idaho. Hope that Big Winter Storm is some weatherman's snawfoo but it looks like you and your critters know how to hunker down just in case. Looking forward to seeing the pink boots for Roxy.

    We're getting below zero and winds out of the north but it's supposed to get better in a day or two. Gardens are just a dream.

  6. So glad you're blogging again and with lots of animal pics to boot! Yay! Love the flying barn cat. Looks like you're ready for that awful forecast. So freaking glad I don't live in cold weather any longer.

  7. I live in cold weather (Quebec, Canada) but my four cats are strictly indoors, so i can't really relate caring for outside critters.

  8. I love how the weather-guessers fudge on the severity of the storm---"Potentially Big Winter Storm".
    So maybe you might, possibly get a big winter storm--or not. :)
    Your barn is so clean and pretty. Glad Chet is there to help keep it that way.
    Stay warm. Hot chocolate for everyone!

  9. Lool Roxy in pink...and on the sofa...She's so funny.
    It's lovely to see all the animals running around and enjoying life..

  10. How did I miss this post?
    As always, you are more than well prepared! Sounds like you might be having a little more indoor time so might I suggest some more looming time? :-)
    Everyone looks very content knowing that they are well cared for....

  11. I think Roxie is pretty smart. She knows she couldn't handle 70-100 MPH winds. Yikes

  12. What a wonderful barn you have! I had not read your blog for a long time... it's good to see your critters again!


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