Category Archives: Herd About It

Half your wood:(late reflections on Ground Hog’s day 2019)

That day was another gray day, but, as it was 40F not -4F, it qualified as a beautiful winter day.The dog and I plowed through the snow on our usual walk through the field to the upper meadow for the first time in at least a month. Once we got to the lane way it was easier going, if only because the base was firm and even, without drifts. The deer and rabbits had been out. Along the wood’s edge there were trampled areas that left me puzzled. Read more

Gray Good News

Finally coming out of my winter slump, just before the next polar vortex hits, the boy and I walk up through the woods to examine the windfalls that will serve as next years firewood. A long wet summer, fall, and winter have loosed the roots of several massive poplar trees from their bindings. Strong winds have helped and also finally knocked the pine trees from their tangled heads.
It is difficult to take pictures when the beagle on his leash is pulling this way and that to sniff what has traveled beneath and along the snowy path. The way is uneven and beneath the snow the rivulets run. Read more

Bright Sunny Brutal Day

Today is a stunningly beautiful winter day. The sun is bright and gleaming off all the snow covered surfaces creating a sense of cheer that we here in CNY have not felt for months. It has been a gloomy fall and winter. Cloud cover and rain have been staples since summer. This crystalline beauty is welcome, but don’t trust it. It is also brutally cold.

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Making Do

Living alone has given me the freedom to practice ‘making do’ on a regular basis. I do not have kids or husband in the house to complain if dinner is not up to par. On the other hand, it seems everything I make ends up divvied into portions and put into the freezer. But all those leftovers have combined into some pretty tasty treats. Let’s just say I am in my 6th decade, learning to be the good cook my Mom learned to be, by making do.

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See Saw January Thaw

WESTBROOKVILLE — Firefighters rescued six people from a flooded home after a massive ice jam in the Pine Kill creek sent water, ice, rocks and wood spilling across properties and Route 209 early Friday afternoon.

Here at the farm we are lucky to be above the fray. Though the creek runs down along the side of the road, it is steep and narrow enough that the water is running too fast to freeze. As long as no one’s culvert gets blocked we are OK. That is until you get to the foot of the hill where this narrow stream meets the larger creek and passes under the road bridge filling the surrounding swamp. As of yesterday afternoon there was still a good foot of side board, so I think here we are OK.

Last night it was difficult to keep the fire going, and yet keep the house from being uncomfortably warm. this morning I needed to stoke it up to counter the falling temperature and the prevailing westerly wind blowing through the dog door leaving a trail of snow on the back porch.

I went out just before dawn to feed the fowl, bring in wood, and check on the driveway. Fine sleet like snow was coming down fast pushed by a slow but steady wind. The dogs decided the sofa was a better place to be. Only about 4 inches had accumulated over a flexing sheet of ice where the lawn had been exposed to the rain yesterday. I managed to get the car cleared off, and the windshields thawed. I got it turned around so it was facing out but it did not want to back up into it’s normal parking spot. Ice crystal snow on top of soft ground does not make for good traction. Eventually I chose to rejoin the dogs, when I realized I could no longer feel a couple of fingers on each hand.

The snow has changed to slowly falling, medium flakes of soft snow. The plow has gone by now, so soon I will go back out to clear the end of the drive. For now I am content to sit with the cats watching our bird feeder Jumbo-tron (ie: picture window).





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