Monday, December 19, 2011


We finally got some snow!  It's been a strange winter so far, with just a dusting.  But this morning we woke up to find a good 6 inches in the open areas, and drifts of over a foot in spots.  It should be a white Solstice after all!
Cows were not as impressed with this change in the weather as I was though.  Poor things will have to walk all the way over
to the round bales to eat.  And that's at least 20 feet.  Knightmare and Oscar weren't too disappointed about everyone else hiding in the barn though.  They seemed to be rather enjoying their breakfast in peace.
We've gone through all of our square bales already, and bought two more loads as well.  It was time to bring in some round bales.  They aren't as nutritious as the square bales, but they certainly last longer.  It keeps all the critters from milling about around the gate first thing in the morning complaining that they're hungry, too.  So now we're feeding a mix of squares and round bales.  We haven't fed any grain yet this winter, and everyone seems to be maintaining their weight so far.

In other news, #2 has been working on snow removal with Grandpa.  He's learning the art of tractor driving and using the bucket.

We butchered two more roosters- weights are looking much better now.  I couldn't find my scale, so I don't have an exact measurement for these, but it was definitely worth the wait.  They're a nice meal size now.  Although, Husband dished out the meat for supper, giving the boys each just a tiny sliver.  He was confused by the single plate of meat.  Me thinks we've been spoiled by those huge turkeys!  The roosters are big enough now to feed my brood, but there wasn't much in the way of leftovers.  We'll get one skimpy chicken rice casserole, but that's all.  Which means I have to cook again tomorrow.  Ble...

The logging company has been working on the crown land behind our property this week.  So far we've seen lots of equipment go in, and two tractor trailer loads of logs come out.  Husband took a drive back to see where they were at.  It's way out there, past the creek at moose camp.  They've put a temporary bridge in.  Which means we won't have access to the scraps they leave behind in the spring.

We went to the Santa Claus Parade the other night.  It doesn't seem to matter how many of these things we attend, or where we watch from, my children are always on the opposite side of me.  That's #2's backside on the far left.  It was -13°C, so the marching band was reduced to drums.  He was disappointed he didn't get to play his baritone.  I was happy he didn't come home with it frozen to his face.
The Littles were happy to attend.  It was the first small town parade we've been to in years.  Every business in town seemed to be well represented with free gifts for the public- pens, construction paper, teddy bears, Santa hats, and candy.  Wow, I can not believe the candy.  #3 said it was better than Hallowe'en.  Just as much candy, and all he had to do was stand there.  It was pretty funny when a float with little ones was going by, and one little girl cried out 'We have to give the candy away!' as she tossed a bag towards us.  Too cute.

#2 made the basketball team at school.  They played in their first tournament last week, and won both games.  Their first home game is on Wednesday.  I'm hoping we get to go and watch.  Husband's been stealing my car to go to work (4 wheel drive), and we won't all fit in the truck.  Hopefully the weather will be good so he can take the truck to work.

We've got a new system in place this year to tell us when the buses are cancelled.  The radio stations around here don't seem to be aware that some of us are up at crazy hours to get ready for school.  The Bigs' bus comes at 7:03.  The radio stations announce cancellations at 7:15 or later.  Last year I'd go out and tell #1 to come back inside after he waited out in the cold all that time.  This year, #2 has made friends with the bus driver's son.  He comes downstairs in the morning and tells me whether the buses are cancelled or not.  Texting does have it's uses.

I've been spending many of these cold winter days curled up with a good...   kindle.  My other present arrived early, and Husband never makes me wait.  I don't think he likes to wrap, lol.  It's just the standard, original version.  No fancy Kindle fire available up here, north of the border.  But I love it.  Much more than I thought I would, actually.  In the past I haven't bought very many new books.  It's always cheaper to buy from thrift stores or used book stores, and there aren't a lot of books that I couldn't wait to find a used copy of. 

We bought the first kindle for #1 in September.  Finding large print books for him has always been a pain, and finding a copy to use at the same time as his class was even more so.  I read most of his books to him last year.  When he came home with Stephen King this year- well that was it.  I am NOT reading that.  (I read about 3/4 of The Shining when I was a teen and have avoided Stephen King ever since.  He terrifies me).    So we bought him the fancier kindle, with audio book and text to speech capabilities.  It's been working out really well for him.  I downloaded a couple hundred classics for him (free public domain titles), as well as the books he's needed for school.  And when he wasn't using it, I borrowed his kindle a few times.

So I kind of wanted one of my own, but I thought I wouldn't use it that much, because I'm unlikely to start selling off my kids to start paying for new books.  But present day was coming, and Husband likes his shopping made easy.  So he talked me into it.

The kindle arrived, and I set it up on the same account, which let me download all of #1's books for free.  Then I added a bunch more classics to my list.  I had just finished one of those when a friend from highschool mentioned that she was pleasantly surprised with her book club's choice.  I got the title from her and looked it up. 

30 Pieces of Silver by Carolyn McCray

The reviews sounded interesting, and the price was right, so I bought it.  And I really liked it.  It was very detailed, fast paced, hard to put down.  And it introduced me to the world of Indie publishing.  Or independent publishing.  Or self publishing.  Almost as good as public domain books, there are a ton of books available from new authors for as little as 99¢.

So, while I'm still unlikely to ever keep up with the New York Times best sellers list, I have a variety of reading material at great prices available at my finger tips at all times!


  1. Way down here in the South where it barely snows and rarely has frozen precipitation on the roads, county officials are out at 4 am, inspecting all the roads in the countryside. They cancel schools about 6 am when school starts at 8 am. I suppose you all are supposed to be hardier than we are expected to be. Mostly, the schools have delayed opening. We would not want the kids to have to go on what we call a "snow day," a built in day that they get off if it does not snow or freeze.

    Congratulations on the Kindle gift. My friend who has glaucoma uses a Kindle for the large print.

  2. we have had a few snows so far this year, but nothing that stays around for more than a day. next week is supposed to be above-average temps which will be nice as we still have yard work to do.

    it sounds like you all enjoyed the parade. congrats to #2!

    thanks for sharing what all has been happening around the Little House!

    your friend,

  3. Your pictures seem to show a rustic life, maybe what Laura Ingalls experienced. Those snow pictures are incredible with the animals looking timeless.

  4. Wendy - just wanted to stop in and wish you and yours a very warm, wonderful and Merry Christmas!

    your friend,

  5. PP- yup, same thing. Well, maybe not that dedicated, lol. But since the bus is supposed to be here (second stop) at 7:03, obviously the decision must be made earlier than that. The radio stations just don't seem to think we need to know before 7:15. Thanks. We have it so much easier than Laura though.

    Kymber- glad to hear that the weather's being kind to you! Hope you have enough time to get it all done before the weather turns. And thanks for the Christmas wishes.