A different routine

It isn’t often that I am solo at home and when it happens, the routine is so very different. I am an early to bed, early to rise soul, dear hubby stays up until the wee hours of morning and sleeps until late morning. There are certain chores I won’t do while he is still sleeping, anything that makes loud noise, like the vacuuming. The laundry room is far enough away that if I can gather the dirty clothes in the dark room, I can start laundry, but bed and bath linens must wait arising. I rarely leave home when he is not here, quite content to be the hermitess on the mountain.

And meals are quite different also. He is a born Texan, beef and starch, pork and starch are the preferences which I will usually eat so as not to prepare two different meals. I enjoy beans, bean or legume soups, potato soup with cheddar cheese, or one of the Asian inspired creations of late. In cold weather, I can eat soups twice a day and be very content, add a slice of good bread and it is even better. When together, we often go to get a newspaper (delivery is sporadic at best), run errands if there are any, and pick up lunch out, usually eaten in the car.

Because too many large doggie landmines were discovered by visiting grands under the snow and since much of the snow has melted and another round is due this afternoon and overnight, I went out and cleaned up dozens from the front and side of the house. I also brought in another load of logs as we went through most of the rack on Monday. It is supposed to be cold tonight, cold tomorrow, and frigid tomorrow night, so I want to be prepared if the heat is needed.

Linens are laundered, vacuuming is done, bathrooms are cleaned, landmines disarmed, and I even made a very quick trip to the big box hardware store to pick up inside of the exterior door mats and a long non-skid runner for the utility room as the old guy is having more and more difficulty on the tile floor where his food and water are placed. The inside the door non-skid mats are to slow the tracking of water and sand onto the hardwood floors.

When the grands were here playing in the snow, the big old guy was isolated in the utility room so as not to get stepped or fallen on by toddlers and he would park hard up against the door to the garage so coming and going had to be through front or back doors, both entering onto the hardwood. I have a boot park inside the utility room, but you couldn’t get to it.

The chickens finally came out of their coop late yesterday and this morning, but I’m guessing that they won’t tomorrow again for a day or two.

I’ll hunker down with my book, spinning, knitting, a cup of coffee or tea and watch it snow again. I think I’ll go pick greens first.

Hello Winter, finally

January 1 it was 70 f, yesterday it was 53 f and wet, this morning it was 31 f and this happened.

It was raining at 2 a.m., but changed at some point. We got about 4-5″ of wet, heavy snow, pretty to look at, but not to play in. The trees are heavy with it and the wind has kicked up, so fires are going in the wood stove and the fireplace, just in case it takes the power out.

I didn’t even bother to walk over to the coop. They have food and water inside and wouldn’t come out even if I did open the door.

Tonight is going down in the mid teens. Most nights this week are similar with single digit expected on Friday night. It is January, this is what winter is supposed to be, not the warmth we have had for the past several weeks. Today is a good day to stay in, watch the fire, spin or knit and enjoy the snow from the warmth of the house.

Yesterday afternoon we had a call from Son 2 that he and his family were on there way here for a few hours. We enjoyed having dinner together here, some snuggles and chats with them and some of the grands. They fled trying to beat the snow in the wee hours, but it caught up with them and took them longer to get home than they had planned, but they arrived safely. It was great having a visit with littles running around and loving on us and the pups.

Begin Anew

The first day of a new year. A positive attitude, or at least an attempt to make each day positive. A new calendar on the refrigerator. Before breakfast was ready, the Christmas decorations were all packed up. The shelves dusted, the floors vacuumed.

It is both sad and cathartic to remove the decorations after nearly a month of cleaning around them, and giving the shelves and floors a good clean up finally.

We begin the new year each year we are home, with Huevos Rancheros. Then after breakfast settled, we took a walk. Today is reaching for 70f (21c), cloudy, it rained last night and will again later, but we got a walk under broken clouds. We enjoyed being outdoors without heavy coats, hats, and gloves. Monday the high might reach freezing with very cold nights. Our goal has been to try to get a brisk walk of at least 2.25 miles each day and we have begun the new year with that.

The coop was nasty, 13 hens in a coop not designed for that many hens fouls quickly. The usual deep litter method doesn’t work with that many birds, so after the walk, it got a good cleaning and deep straw added back in. They are starting anew as well.

They are so nosey, they have to see what is going on.

Because of their scratching and the recent rain, the exposed soil just inside the gate and just outside the front of the coop was quite slick, so fresh hay was forked down as well. And since I was out and about with the hay fork, the wet leaves were cleared from the uphill side of the culvert and I realized that the road gravel has the culvert filled about 2/3 full again. I either have to try to shovel it out or put in another work order to VDOT, but the last two I have submitted have been ignored, maybe three’s the charm.

While I was working outside, the garden was checked. The winter greens bed is thriving. I harvested radishes, spinach, komatsu. There are healthy kohlrabi greens, and kale too. I will cover them, but I need to purchased another sheet of plastic tomorrow to make that happen.

I have never since I started gardening, havested this late in the season.

So the new year begins with a clean house, clean coop, a positive attitude, and about 20 pounds less than I began last year.

Happy New Year to you all.