Thursday, December 13, 2007


Mother Nature is doing her best to make up for the drought we suffered this summer. We've had rain, snow, and lots more rain. We awakened to a downpour which, on our metal roof, filled our ears and chests with vibration.

These attractive overflow pipes (NOT sewer pipes!!) grace our yard. They carry excess rain water under the old logging road so the logging road doesn't wash out. We use that road to get to part of our property where we, appropriately enough, collect firewood.

The bottom pipe gets some action when it rains but the upper pipe is usually dry, partially because it's higher up and partially because until recently it was clogged with mud and debris. My delightful husband undertook the task of cleaning out the pipe and boy, are we both glad he did!

As you can see, steady rain has been enough to cause water to overflow the logging road, despite the two drainage pipes. Bummer.

While we were on the porch taking pictures, a new waterfall developed! Spectacular... and a bit unnerving. You can see it to the left of the drain pipes, just pouring off the logging road.

After our yard flooded our first year here, my husband got the tractor and dug the creek out with the backhoe. Now our yard doesn't flood (touch wood). We still have some work to do by the chicken house and the garden, but those areas weren't threatened by the creek as much as our home was, so we haven't done anything with them. We are firm believers in "just in time" (or "almost too late") methods.


Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Snow Apples

Here are a couple more photos from our recent snow. The apples on the apple tree had snow piled on them so high I don't think they could have held one more flake. We didn't pick the apples this year because they were awfully small due to the drought.

Here's a shot showing several "snow apples" hanging on the tree.

Today it's raining and we're expecting 50F. Yesterday it got up to 60F! This is December?!


Thursday, December 06, 2007

Icicle Sculpture

We got lots of snow yesterday, probably five or six inches, and some of it melted and ran down and made icicles.

One of the horizontal bars of ice from which the icicles were hanging broke loose and one side of the ice bar dropped but the bar of ice did not fall. This made the icicles tilt crazily. Over time, more vertical icicles formed and the result is an odd formation of icicles.



Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Chickens in Snow

With the exception of this fine rooster and one hen, all of our chickens were born on the Fourth of July. They are five months old now, and this is their first experience with snow.

Okay, the rooster is kind of fluffed up and the wind is blowing his feathers the wrong way, but he is a fine rooster, I assure you.

They are reluctant to come out of the chicken house; I would be, too, if I were barefoot. When they do come out they like to hang out under this brush pile. You might be able to spot a couple of red combs in the photo, but there are at least a dozen chickens in there.

See? Here are the two roosters, with a couple of hen butts behind and up the hill from them.

My chickens live in an unheated, uninsulated chicken house. We have plans to build them an unheated, insulated house. They did fine last year in nighttime temps down to -8F. It's sad to think they made it through temperatures like that only to have their ranks decimated in the Great Raccoon Wars of '07. This batch is a lot more skittish, though, so I think their chance of survival is moh bettah than that of their predecessors.


Tuesday, December 04, 2007

First Snow

We got our first snow, a dusting, yesterday and last night. It's melting about as quickly as it accumulates, but it's still peaceful and beautiful. I LOVE a new snow. It makes the world so clean and fresh. A new snow is full of promise.

This is our third winter here (can that be possible?!) and I still catch myself just gazing out the window whenever it snows. I wonder will my southern self ever consider snow as commonplace as rain.

A pair of gloves lies on a table on the porch, reminiscent of a sunny work day when a distraction called us away from a task.

The snows were preceded by LOTS of rains and some heavy winds. Our creek finally has water in it again, after seven months of being dry. This is a Very Big Deal because our water supply is a shallow (25 ft) hand dug well. The creek level is indicative of how well our household water supply is doing.

We're snug indoors with a fire in the wood stove and lots of coffee in the coffee pot. It's a good day.


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