Winter has been rough this year! I don’t mean to complain, but as we have gotten older, it seems that the cold weather does affect us more. As the regular readers of this blog know, I have bad knees. My mother and my aunt used to tell me that cold weather made your bones hurt more. I didn’t know what they meant. I know now! It is an ache I can’t get rid of until I warm up. I promised my husband that I will not complain about hot summer weather this year. I am looking forward to it. In fact, if it wasn’t for having pets and horses, I would welcome it. Hot weather is hard on them.
I have been busy planning my garden and that keeps me occupied on the future warm weather. It is just around the corner. My raised beds are covered deeply with snow. I hope the cold winter temperatures helped to kill off the bugs, and especially the fleas. The fleas were horrible last year. I feel they helped to make my cat, Callie’s health decline fast. They feast on older cats who may have an immune system that is breaking down. I have been working on my other two cats’ health now, before the flea season gets here.
I really can’t complain too much about old man winter this year, except that it really was a lot of work for my husband. Shoveling snow is a job I plan on finding some tools to make it easier for him next year. Many people had power outages this year, which of course, we don’t, since we have our own electric system. Down south they had cold weather and some even had snow, which they are not really equipped to handle. Our road crews handle snow every year and it is no big deal to them. People have had their water pipes frozen, and that is worse than not being able to pump it due to a power outage. Our pitcher pump is pretty reliable, as long as whoever uses it last, remembers to drain it back down and pull the handle up.
You can see in the photos just how much shoveling my husband did. Those piles of snow are where he put the snow he shoveled off the driveway and paths. If you don’t shovel it out, it makes it hazardous to walk on. We have to bring hay in twice a month, and he has to be able to get right up to the barn door with that. Going outside at night to give the horses their night hay, you need to have a path, so you don’t fall and break something or drop the hay all over the ground. It is too expensive to waste!
The one thing I do enjoy about winter is the winter birds who come to my deck every morning for a hand out. The chickadees, nuthatches, blue jays and woodpeckers are here every morning. I feed them bones, crumbs, leftovers, but meat leftovers, is their favorite. I try to save something for them every night. They can be very demanding if I don’t have anything to put out there. I used to buy bird seed, but they are particular, and only like black sunflower seeds, and leave the cheap millet behind. So I just feed them what we eat, and they are happy as can be. In spring, they will migrate to the woods for summer and the robins will be back and take over. I don’t have to feed them. Though they love to follow my husband as he mows our yard. I figure those robins will be back soon.
Copyright © 2014 Kathleen G. Lupole
All Photographs Copyright © 2014 Kathleen G. Lupole