Monday, January 6, 2014

A Good Old Canadian Winter!...... Drat

One thorn of experience is worth
a whole wilderness of warning.
                James Russell Lowell


Standing at the sink doing dishes, after an early supper last evening with my hands playing in the warm sudsy water and dreaming while looking out the frosted front window something catches my eye.

 A big grey pickup truck pulling a wagon load of square hay bales creeps slowly along the icy snow covered road, a car with flashing lights follows closely behind. I remember the days when I used to follow My Hero while he was pulling wagon loads of hay home behind a tractor, it always seemed like the safe way to do this since the driver pulling the load of hay, be it round or square bales, never knew if anyone would see him quick enough with no tail lights. Just having that slow moving vehicle sign on the back of the wagon did not seem to slow people down but they always noticed flashing car lights.

 We eventually did put flashing lights on the back of our wagons and even with that someone still ran into the back of our wagon in broad daylight. People always forget that slow moving vehicles mean exactly that. I am so happy we do not have to do this kind of hauling hay anymore, it is a worry I no longer have. This particular farmer was trying to get his hay home for his sheep to prepare for the extreme cold front that is coming back after some freezing rain and more snow that is expected this week. Everyone is getting their animals ready for the change once again, keeping them safe.


Monday morning My Hero will be back at work and I will be outside dressed in many (many) layers trying to start the tractor then driving back to do what I usually do but I have to admit this whole as I heard it called a few days ago “Good old Canadian Winter” thing is not what I had in mind for my return to normal. A nice sunny day, cold but not arctic cold and a bit of snow for snowshoeing was what I was hoping for. My Hero will be in a nice warm office but I know worrying about the tractor starting for me and I will be worrying about him driving on that slippery highway getting to that office in the city. Oh yes back to that normal worrying for both of us.

I have heard stories from friends who are already worried about their dwindling wood supply and I cannot even imagine going out to the bush to cut down trees in this bitter cold, My Hero has the drive shed full and it looks like we will be OK, well it depends I guess on how long this “Good Old Canadian Winter” thing will last. He always tries to make sure we have plenty, I love that he takes care of that and keeps us comfortable. The weatherman says we have not had these cold temperatures for at least 18 years. It is funny but I cannot remember it being this cold 18 years ago but I do remember the years of spring and fall days in the bush always cutting and splitting and hauling wood. I no longer can do that because of the Fibromyalgia that does not like the cold but My Hero is still going strong. There are some days I feel guilty about that but he understands, and for that I am grateful. I imagine some day we will have to make that decision like everyone else and consider an alternative heat source. For now he says he enjoys doing it so he will continue to clean up the dead trees in the bush and I will supply him with great lunches, good looking company, a few laughs, moral support and not to forget (he taught me well) my tractor driving and dumping the wagon load of wood skills.

Monday morning I will make sure that the girls will have lots of bedding in the bush tucked out of the wind and that the water is flowing freely in the stream, the salt blocks are ready and that there is plenty of hay to eat. If by chance when that “Good Old Canadian  Winter” with those frigid arctic cold winds makes it hard for the tractor to start I will be grateful for the fact that since we always over feed and there are plenty of bales back there waiting for them they will never go hungry even if I can’t make it. I also know that the thick cedar bush will shelter them and keep them safe and warm from all that Mother Nature throws at them.

If I am very lucky Monday morning the forecast will be wrong and the sun will come up and the weatherman on the radio will say it was all a mistake and I will go feed those cows as usual then be able to slip on those snowshoes and go explore the bush that I have been missing these last two weeks while knitting funky hats to keep out that cold and wondering why I cannot remember 18 years ago and this extreme kind of cold. Could that really be true?


It is Sunday morning as I sit here and type this and I can hear the tractor running outside the window and the pieces of wood hitting the basement floor, that means My Hero has seen the weather forecast (freezing rain then snow and then extreme cold) while watching his American farm show on TV this morning and getting ready too. Now, this sound I remember. I better go to see what I can do to help. Darn, I wish he could stay home a couple more weeks. Looks like after my chores there will be bundling up and more toque experimentation. Yes, I think I figured it out just in time. I know I may stand out in a crowd wearing these but they fit, so what's a girl to do?

I do know for a fact that there also seems to be a “Good Old American Winter” thing going on for many of my neighbours to the south, and I hope they are doing OK. How are you all doing? I worry.

Keep safe and warm everyone.


Later

59 comments:

  1. Hey B (or should that be Hay!) We have just had our delivery of firewood aswell. Gotta keep the feet worm on these wintery days. Hope you are well and looking forward to your work in 2014 :)

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  2. Hmmm. I don't remember a winter this cold, either. Hasn't the weather been crazy?!

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  3. Keep warm my friend.
    Gosh, it would not be a good idea to run out of wood.
    Hopefully the sun will shine for you on Monday...it's nearly Tuesday here....Hugs M xox

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  4. this is such weird weather! stay warm sweet b!!

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  5. Please stay safe and warm!! A Canadian friend of mind on Facebook this morning said that the government in her province/area was telling people to not go out of doors!

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  6. We have a lot of firewood but Paul keeps cutting through the winter. It's cold and winter here. Hope it's not too miserable for your chores!

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  7. We woke up to a foot of snow in the driveway this morning so the hubs is out there shovel in hand. The heat is blasting in the house and I'm preparing to make soup. Good old Canadian winter indeed...blech.

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  8. I watch from a far as the Winter is descending on you over there, I worry about the those of you on farms, the homeless, animals, domesticated and wild and pray that this weather if it must arrive that it doesn't last long. Love your toques.

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  9. It's a balmy 12*F outside this morning B, not counting the wind chill. The heat is off here, as is our norm in winter. We choose not to run the furnace because the insulation in the house is poor, and we just waste money, trying to keep the house warm. It's only 54*F inside, so not too bad. We have learned to dress warm inside.

    DH is buried under a veritable mountain of blankets, as he tries to get well from influenza, and the follow-on chest infection.

    I have been camoing out in the living room, in my 0*F sleeping bag for the past 3 nights, trying to avoid getting sick myself. I am hoping the vaccine works for me.

    Good luck with the tractor, and stay warm outside--you sure don't want frostbite!

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  10. Be safe as you chore and are home alone, Miss B.

    Sunday was horrible for us. It was -9* and very very windy at 7 am. The temp dropped steadily throughout the day.

    I see it is -12* this morn and looks like a breeze.

    You are right, this extreme cold is hard on equipment and animals. I am glad we can stay pretty warm in the tractor, ranger or pickup while feeding.

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  11. Being so far down south we don't have it nearly as cold as our northern neighbors, but it's still cold for us! Hope your farm animals and Hero will be okay!!

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  12. B,

    It looks like you and your Hero have everything under control. Stay warm, and safe with this arctic wind.

    Our temperatures dropped to 4 degree's and then the wind chill brought us to about -4 degrees. Our truck started but didn't want to shift into drive, lol

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  13. I hope you get your wish!!
    We are freezing in Michigan. Coldest weather in Decades says the report this morning!
    Have a great day :) Stay Warm!

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  14. Weird indeed. Last night it got up to 46 degrees and by morning it started dropping quickly with very heavy winds and flash freezing. By tomorrow morning the high will be 8 and with the windchill -30. Just what we don't look forward to. Our wind gusts today are going up to 48 mph. I'm glad your cows have some shelter. Our horses will probably spend most of the day in the barn tomorrow. Keep that fire burning.

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  15. Good luck staying warm and keeping your critters fed. The hats look super. Are you making one for Feral's bunny? And it's okay if Canada doesn't share their arctic weather so freely. We people south of your border really already have plenty.

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  16. Buttons your one amazing Canadian girl. I exhausted just reading the things you do in one day.
    I'll try to blow some hot air your way.

    Warm hugs n smiles :)
    Be well be happy, never loose your sense of humor.

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  17. I hope the tractor started this morning and that you are staying nice and warm. Yes we are having a good old fashioned American winter here. It is -40 windchill. I don't plan to go out today. I'm getting to be a wimp in cold weather.

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  18. It is bitter cold and lots of snow here but the sun is shining right now. Stay warm Buttons!!

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  19. It's getting very cold here today and the wind chills will be down very low tonight and tomorrow, but we'll be OK. I worry about you and my other friends up north who must do so much outdoors. Please stay warm! Love the toques!

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  20. our texas winter has been colder, earlier than normal, and i've burned thru a lot of our wood pile. i have more in the back woods, already cut and ready. just have to go back and get it to bring up into the shed. we had heavy rains before christmas and the pasture was too muddy and now it is just too cold. 16F this a.m.

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  21. Yep, it's dang cold B! That's a really lovely sunrise capture. Stay warm!

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  22. It is cold, even all the way down here- stay warm!!!

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  23. I have followed Jim in the car with my flashers on so many times, as he pulls wagon loads of hay back and forth from one farm to the other. You can never be too careful.
    I can picture you now, Buttons...riding out on your tractor with round bales, opening them up for your girls and making nice bedding for them as well. I'm glad you have all that wood ready to keep your house nice and cozy. Keep warm my friend! (I'm hoping our weather man is wrong too...but so far this winter he's been right on.)

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  24. I have heard a lot about canadian winters from friends and I give you credit for putting up with it. Thanks for sharing the photographs.

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  25. You too, I cannot even begin to imagine that kind of cold.
    My youngest is 18 so I of course don't remember much about that 18 years ago. I bet we don't forget this winter for awhile. I am sure lots of records are being broken.
    Stay warm and have a lovely Monday.

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  26. Yes, we are having a "Good Ole American Winter" here, but it will be short-lived. However, this is the coldest we have been in over 20 years! The wind chill is the greatest concern. Take care, Buttons, and stay safe and warm! Those hats look like they will do the job!

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  27. The snow amount here isn't what it used to be lot's less but the temps well they are good ole Canadian winter temps -22C feels like -40C nasty . When I was a kid on the farm it was that cold and deep , deep snow back in those days . Wind shill warnings for today here and white outs right now . Great post . I dress the same here in this frigid weather and I don't care how I look as long as I am warm . Thanks for sharing stay cozy and have a good day .

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  28. It was 55 degrees here yesterday and 2 degrees this morning. A little too crazy for me. Stay safe and warm, my friend. xo Laura

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  29. It is unbelievable how much snow you are getting over there this year. We have had it easy here - so far...
    Lynne

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  30. I'm a worrier when this cold, snowy weather arrives. I'm always worried about my family when they have to travel on the highways so much. Stay safe out there alone in the cold!

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  31. This has been such a cold winter for nearly everyone it seems. We aren't quite as frigid as you are, but today we broke a low temperature record that was set 18 years ago! I brought Duchess, Baby, and Emma inside to keep them safe. Stay warm!

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  32. My mom calls her dish washing sink her "think tank". It seems you have the same type. : )

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  33. I remember winter this cold and colder and certainly more snow. Then again, I spent my first 35 years in Gatineau, Quebec.

    That said, times change and where I am now is chilly and certainly windy by the big lake (Lake Ontario).

    I'm certainly thankful for our wood stove. It keeps the whole house warm.

    I hope you and your hero will find ample time to enjoy the warm your home provides.

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  34. When I went out to help the Pres (before the stranger stopped) I had my flashers on and the cars didn't even seem to care or slow down...so rude and annoying! Cold here tomorrow again...8...bundle...:)JP

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  35. Now it could be worse. You could have a steel tractor seat and no cab like in the old days. Or did I say that one before.
    You are very conscientious about the care of your animals and that is the main thing.

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  36. it's was so cold here at the jersey shore...today it was 50, 2 degrees tomorrow. it's been crazy but as you know, i LOVE the snow. ours is all gone!!

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  37. We are far enough west to have missed your weather. I feel for you, though, and agree with your thankfulness for a hero to keep you warm, and cedar bushes to do the same for your girls.

    Blessings!

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  38. May the winter ease for all of us.

    The weather maker forgot we live in the south. Single digits and we are setting records. I would rather get a trophy for something else besides the lowest low in recorded history.

    We are blessed. Thinking of those less fortunate I wish them warmth.

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  39. someone sent me an assortment of mustards so we are eating our way to warmth - dont worry ;p tell that wonderful girl of yours that mike read every paper she wrapped it up in - double the gifting! xoxo

    and-

    dr appt tmr at the clinic in Broadus with the PA...this should be interesting. They only come in twice a week, so i may have to sit next to the rancher who needs stitches with the calf that needs vetting between his knees that he cant leave in the truck outside otherwise it will freeze - you know how us faraways from town people are, we try to get a million things done when we go to town - i think the townies think we are nuts but we pay them so oh well. So its 1030 at the clinic and 11 at the acctnt's...and we need milk and eggs and the chainsaw blades sharpened...maybe a chocolate malt to celebrate the drugs i might get to knock this thing down... ;)

    we arent worried about you - you got this cold weather thing down pat, flannels and netflix...are those curly headed girls outside wearing your toques and hoof mittens yet?

    xoxox

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  40. Hi B it's Monday night here so I assume your weather has hit. The extreme cold front has affected most of the US and I see it on our local news. Our winter thus far has been super weird. Freezing nights and morning but the lately the days have been down right hot... Mother Nature keeping us on our toes I guess. Stay warm friend.

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  41. I used to be able to tolerate the winters back east when I lived in Montreal. Not anymore. I live on the west coast and we are experiencing colder temperatures unlike the colder weather east of us. I am freezing here. Our blood is getting thinner. Stay warm and love the colors on your hats especially the blue one.

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  42. Yup, we sure are having a fun time of it this winter...
    Stay safe!!

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  43. ...been real cold here too but warming the end of the week. Hope that holds true for you as well!

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  44. I have followed behind the tractor many times myself; and hubby has pulled a vehicle behind the combine from field to field as well. The temps here are freezing with the Wind Chill..the first year we moved back to Bruce Cty. it had been -40 then, and I am certain it is now. Stay warm as you can x

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  45. Ah, yes; A Good Old-fashioned Canadian Winter — indeed. We've had the snow (almost every day) and the -40 temperatures (or wind chill) often enough. This is why all Canadians should try hibernating in winter — not just us Bears.

    Hope you, your Hero, and all the girls stay comfortable. (I checked our wood pile, and we're good.)

    Blessings and (warm) Bear hugs!

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  46. Your writing today had me feeling so calm that I sighed ~ the way you describe things is just so darn wonderful.
    Stay warm though.
    We got 16 inches of snow between Thursday and Friday night it was in the minus digits . Now listen to this ~ Saturday in the 40s and Sunday morning it was was 55 !!! It rained and all the snow is pretty much gone (all 16 inches in the course of 3 days !) That's New England weather and I am not complaining , it keeps things interesting .lol

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  47. We are in the minus tempt too here in Michigan, and the sun was out, but the wind didn't allow you to feel that way.

    Stay warm, and yes, layers and layers of clothes before you go out!

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  48. B- I love the James Russell Lowell quote!

    I have been thinking about you and hoping that you are staying warm. We had a low of 9 with the windchill of -2. I know that sounds like a heatwave to you!
    Hopefully, it will start warming up for both of us..and the girls!
    Much love, Cindy

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  49. The picture of you standing with your hands in sudsy warm water looking out the kitchen window is awesome. So homey. Stay warm my friend!

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  50. Stay warm and safe outside... Rain here in Seattle, highs in the 40s, lows in the 30s.. We are fortunate...

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  51. I think I was forgetting what a wintery winter was like. Now I remember. I am always afraid that I will fall over in my snow gear and no one will find me until spring... You keep warm, dear Buttons.

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  52. We're calling it an old fashioned winter here on the east coast. I remember that 18 years ago we were able to skate and ice-fish on the tidal river by where we live. I haven't seen that kind of activity on the river in years. Maybe this winter will bring it back. :-)

    I wasn't aware that you had fibromyalgia, Buttons.

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  53. That's all we are seeing on the news these days is how cold it is.. Stay safe and warm in that cold Canadian Winter.

    Hugs~

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  54. Hmmm. We are having a "winter that wasn't" so far. Very little snow, mild temps except for one week when we had a couple of days at -17C. We had this 2 years ago too, and got a good dump of snow in February and near floods that spring, so mild winters aren't always a blessing if they mean wet springs.
    I bet those toques would sell well!

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  55. You're going to have a lovely assortment of hats, one for each day of the week. Hopefully this cold snap will soon pass and you can have normal again.

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  56. it has been nasty cold and rotten here too, we are feeding extra as well to keep ahead for the weather. Every winter seems harder as I get older, sigh

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  57. We only have wood heat as well. Which makes it impossible to go away for a few days. So instead we just go away for the winter. Still here in the snowy BC, but heading out in a couple days. No fun closing house completely, drain water, empting fridges. Your hats look amazing you are really getting creative with them.

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  58. Hope that you are staying warm and glad that you have that great wood supply. Love your hats. Blessings to you, and hoping that spring comes soon

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The mind grows by what it feeds on. J.G. Holland

Thank you so much for your comments, they mean more to me then I could ever express. Hug B

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