Today's Quote

“If people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny.” Thomas Jefferson

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Deep South Winter Storm

I really hate these winter storms here in the deep south. I know, I folks up north are just laughing at what we call a winter storm here. Here is the difference. Folks up north understand snow and ice, folks in the south understand cold and mud. Folks in the north understand how to drive in snowy icy conditions, folks in the south think snow and ice mean GO FASTER, CHANGE LANES MORE OFTEN, NEVER SIGNAL, SLAM ON BRAKES!I know my sister in Maine is laughing her head off right now as she prepares to shovel the snow so that she can make her morning snowy drive to work. I don't envy her and that is why I live where snow is supposed to be a once in 20 year thing. Usually our winters mean lots of rain and mud, not lots of snow and ice! Global warming my foot and don't even go there about the "climate change" they are now trying to call it. Anyway, I am sure the stores were a nightmare yesterday. What a blessing to always be prepared (remember Hurricane Andrew and Hurricane Ivan taught me that). I do however, have a very busy day ahead of me because of this mess coming from the door that somebody in the north left open. In normal winter conditions here I don't really make any big changes to the barns. They stay pretty open. I just deep bed the goat barn and they have a large stall to cuddle up in on cold nights. The rabbits are content with deep hay in their cages and on really cold nights I throw a cover over the cages. However, I am battening down the hatches at both ends of the aisleway so that it doesn't become a wind tunnel. I also have my old stallion in the stall next to the goats, so will give him some extra bedding and close up that gap at the bottom of his stall. Both stalls are closed it, but open to the aisle which is open on the north and south end. The rabbits are housed in the aisle. Then there is the chicken coop. It is closed on the north side, but the other 3 sides are open along the top. So I will close up 2 of those sides, add more bedding for the chickens and fill up their grain feeder that hardly ever gets used. Having something to eat all day while cooped up will help keep them warm. Then it will just be a quick check to refresh water. I am filling extra water buckets all around because I know my hoses will be frozen and possibly my outdoor spickets. Then there is the big horse barn. My husband decided to take off part of the north side wall so that he could turn my big foaling stall into the tractor spot. This means that the barn can get pretty windy. So I will cover the stall facing the opening and the side door opening. Then there is just the small door on the south side and the 2 horses that use that barn will be able to get in out of the freezing rain, sleet or snow. I will back some extra bedding in there and go ahead and take some hay over there so that everything I need is right there. I have extra coffee cans to have feed rations pre measured out and all that needs doing is to grab a can and dump it. And again I have a big trashcan in the barn for water so I don't have to haul to many water buckets, just a couple gallon jugs of hot water. I try to make everything as simple outside as possible in this weather. Sleet is no fun to run around outside in for very long and everything is so spread out around here, that a lot of time is spent in the elements moving from barn to barn. It would be nice to have everything in one spot and that is my goal one day, but alas that day is not here. We are good in the house, but need to bring in more firewood and stack as much as we can get. The propane is good and set to go. I am cooking a turkey, Sunday morning so if we lose power it is simple to heat the turkey and canned veggies over the fire. I also have canned soups and stuff and am baking bread and some cookies also. We are good as far as the house goes. All the laundry is done. You just never know with our power out here in the country on good days (it goes out on bright clear sunny days!), so with this weather....limbs falling, lines breaking, town a priority....well you get the idea. The one thing I am really upset about is this will keep me from working on the wattle fence around the garden. I have been having so much fun building that fence and it looks like it will have to wait a few days. Oh, well...that is life on the farm. Maybe I can eek out a little time to work on it today and this storm might give me lots more material to work with! Blessings from the farm and stay warm and safe.


Kelly said...

Sounds like we get colder around this part of AZ than you do there-we lock our hens up each night ina wood house-not sure they need it though. The goats have 3 different enclosures that are all 3 sided and they seem fine with that. Hope it doesn't get too bad for ya.

PS-I agree that the cold can just stay up north!

Beth said...

I"m in NC and we're getting ready for the cold weather/snow/sleet too. The chickens got extra bedding and the goat shed got another layer of bedding too. We put more oil in the tank yesterday and made sure there's kerosene for the heater in case of power outages. I cooked a double recipe of white bean/chicken chili last night and have a double dose of stew beef in the crockpot right now. It's nice to have a few meals planned out and ready to go in case of any outages. Take care and stay safe.