The positives …

… about being below freezing for so long.

And there are positives, it cannot possibly be all bad. Not in Our World anyway.  There are lots of good things.

The pigs get a warm breakfast of soaked alfalfa cubes, garlic, kitchen scraps  and molasses.  It actually looks pretty tasty.. if you are a pig.

The sheep are happy. cold-002

There was so much good pasture for them this year that their fleeces are long and crinkly.


The cows graze, heedless of the cold and I get to wear lots of clothes  – and I like to wear lots of clothes.  I am thrilled at the arrival yesterday of a new man’s farm jacket just for me.  It is big and thick and deliciously cosy. The Carhart is officially retired though after wearing it for four or so years,  ripped and worn to bits with the broken zip and hanging pockets, I find it hard to retire it completely to the rag bag, so it will hang by the door for a while (probably a couple of years) just in case I need it as a back up.

All the pears and pumpkins I have collected sit in the  barn’s deep freeze and I bring them to the house to thaw one bucket at a time then I feed them out.  So all our autumn produce is lasting longer than usual.


Straw starts to look warm and friendly.

I am carrying buckets of water again and this means my bucket carrying muscles are groaning and growing. .. I like my bucket carrying muscles.

Stews cook for a long time on the wood-stove .. I love to cook on the wood-stove, I feel quite sanctimonious when i cook home grown food on top of the fire I am heating the house with. If it heated the water for my bath as well I would be even more sanctimonious. But I am working on that.

The birds hang out in the barn so we can observe Godot’s growing tail up close.  Though with the big doors almost closed it is darker in there now.


The white peacock tail feathers do not have an eye like the blue ones. They feather out with such delicate grace.  But I think I will succumb  and try to find another India Blue Peacock at the bantam swap this coming spring. Godot is beautiful but I do miss the flash of colour that The Duke of Kupa brought to the garden.  Just because I miss The Duke of Kupa does not mean I love Godot any less.  Life is like that you know.

Another good thing about the cold is  that I get more work done in the house.   I have made a little book of farm pictures to be printed as Christmas pressies for the various children in the family.  The T Shirt crowd funding thingy finishes today so very soon we will have our Sheila T Shirts and Sheila will have a cheque.  Thank you. The calendars have been printed and are listed as shipped.  I have got them down to $22.00 per calendar plus postage. So shortly I will email all the calendar people and we will  begin the payment and postage process.

Oo that is an alliteration. I love alliterations – do you remember this story? I just went back and read this story myself. I love that memory. And I see that I used to say Good Morning in my older posts. When did I stop saying Good Morning? Obviously it IS morning.

What else is good and working in the cold .. what have I forgotton.

So, Good morning my darlings. I hope you have a lovely day.

Your friend on the farm







53 Comments on “The positives …

  1. I understand you wearing a lot of clothes, sort of a feeling solid grounded !:), it is also getting colder here in the Danish countryside, although not that cold as at you, but requiring me to wear insulated carhatts overalls and my still doable carhatt jacket although also ripped etc. greetings from one farm to another !

  2. The first advantage of the cold that comes to my mind is how nice it feels to come into a warm building! Foggy glasses – not so much though!

  3. Brrr!!! I’m glad you have a new jacket. Do you need a new hat? I might make it better, 2nd time round!
    I went walking without my sticks today. Not a good idea: passing car drivers must think I’m drunk as I’m so wobbly.
    Have started knitting a warm Guernsey sweater, just in case your weather arrives here. The woodburner isn’t coming until mid-Jauary!
    ViV xox

  4. Accepting our circumstances instead of railing against them makes life easier, I think. I struggle with it also. You are making good use of the cold. That warm mash for the pigs does sound good. Looking forward to the farmy goodies. Good morning Miss C.

  5. Glad you have a warm and cosy new jacket. One of the reasons I dislike winter is all the layers of clothes – and we certainly don’t get anywhere near as cold as you folks! Does Godot display too, or is he still too young? Good morning 😉 Laura

  6. I hope your new coat keeps you warm and cosy. It is really cold here too. Our walk to school yesterday had minus 15 (celcius) windchill. I had a grumpy child who does not like snow pants.

  7. This post brought up my wandering (and perhaps too idle) mind pondering what the animals must think about as the seasons change. You are so steadfast and accepting of life, and natural changes on the farmy…not to anthropomorphize your lovely farm stock but they must all sense that no matter what comes from the sky that they will be cared for, and very well besides.

    • or they just sleep and eat!.. though Sheila definitely makes a big bed in the winter so there is some knowledge of preparing for cold in her memory banks.. c

  8. I have Carhart jacket that I refuse to retire. The only tear is in the lining of the hood. It’s covered in long forgotten stains and the zipper needs coaxing every single time I wear it.

  9. i just love the ‘alliteration story’ from your youth Celi!!! And I’m still hoping that I will be reading your memoir in the not too distant future, although I know you’ve always got so many things going on, and that the memoir will take time. But you have so many parts of it already written! I can picture your school so well, the long, wide corridor, the windows, and the scary teacher! Just one of the so many fascinating stories of your youth! Just LOVE them!!! xo As for the positives of freezing weather…..well, I’m having a hard time thinking of more of them! 🙂

  10. I was going to say that as much as I love alliteration (and creating it), I love the word onomatopoeia better, but you beat me to it (I read your linked post). What a brilliant story about the joy of discovery. I do hope my son has moments like that to come. I follow Life at the End of the Road too. I wonder if that’s how I found you… I was trying to remember the other day. Doesn’t mattter, I did find the Farmy, that’s the important bit. So glad you have a new coat. I think the good thing about the cold is that we can (hopefully) cosy up and then have the joy of not needing so many clothes (or socks) when we get spring and summer again. We’ve had it so mild this autumn, proper cold will be a shock if/when it comes. And visually it can be beautiful – winter sunsets, and frost on leaves and grass and summer’s remnants. Thinking the good is key, I believe. My dog would be very envious of your pigs’ cooked breakfasts (if she could read!) All warmth and extra power to you in your cold.

  11. My LUNGS! Boy the cold below freezing winds here have been wicked and they make my lungs hurt when they hit me. But I LOVE the COLD when the Sun is bright – as it is today. High of 42 with SUN…. MY KIND OF DAY.

    • I agree and the throat, my throat was stinging yesterday, today, though still windy is a trifle warmer, the wind has shifted from a nor/wester to a sou/wester.. a good ten degrees warmer.. hope you get some of it today.. c

  12. I wish I was closer, so you could send me your Carhartt jacket to mend. I do good mending. I’d put in a new zip, mend the tears, reinforce bits. I love the Japanese idea of ‘boro’, where precious garments are patched, mended or recycled into other things.
    It’s 5.30 am, it’s already hot, and in six hours I go up to theatre for my surgery. My stomach is howling in protest at no food, my mug of hot water is all it’s getting, and it’s not helping to keep down the giant butterflies that are stomping around in there with hobnail boots on. Reading about winter life on the Farmy does help… I’ll see the Fellowship on the other side 🙂

          • I am sure everything went well for this one.. and I hope that soon you can have a lovely breakfast.. looking forward to hearing from you again soon.. c

            • The morning after breakfast was magnificent! My stomach thought my throat had been cut, I was famished! I’m back at my sister’s, and soon the Husband will be coming down to collect me. Meanwhile, I’m enjoying the luxury of lounging around, doing a bit of hand sewing, reading and having lovely food and drinks delivered to my elbow. It can’t possibly last…. I’ll be back to blogging next week, when the Husband has brought the camera download cable I forgot to pack.

        • Thank you! I’m through and well, sore and tired, but happy about the outcome. In three days the Husband is coming to collect me, and I’ll be so glad to get home…

      • Out of hospital. Sore, stiff and very tired, glad to be sleeping in a bed I know, will be even gladder to be back in my own bed in a week’s time! Thanks for the positive thoughts.

  13. Good morning! What a wonderful alliteration story, and wintry photos. It took me back to similar corridors. My 7 tear old self will now be chanting “alliteration onomatopoeia” to herself all day! For me the positive of the cold is not being hot… I just don’t manage heat well, the very cold just a little better. And I love the woodfire and slow cooked pot meals. It’s going to be hot hot here for a few days. I will think chilly thoughts.

  14. I have learned to love the cold (but not as much as I relish the the searing heat of an Andalucian summer 😉 I love too that you always find the positive in eveyrthing!

  15. I came. I saw, and you Celi conquered me with your positivity. My own body rebels to the extremes in temperature. Anyone know if they do thermostat transplants yet?

    I so want to see Godot with the tail feathers spread, They may not have the eye detail, but I wonder if the feathers look like lace?

    I am glad you have the new jacket for the severe weather, you need to be hale and hearty for the next trip to NZ. Stay warm.

  16. I have a couple of FD’s old vintage coats to wear around here when I do chores. They were Salvation Army purchases… you can’t imagine the deals one finds on winter wear at SA! We have had a few nice days here for me to get outside chores done without freezing numb. I hope we have nice weather for a while. That bitter cold stuff from last week was a misery so soon here in the south!

  17. Just stumbled onto your blog! I didn’t realize white peacocks existed. Shows how much I know. I get better and better each winter with tolerating the cold. Although I’m in Virginia, where some people might argue we hardly have winters at all (but they would be wrong). The pipes in my house froze last night so I’m not too pleased with this wintry weather. Thank goodness it’s a rental.

  18. The cold does rid us of a lot of pests, so that’s also a good thing. I hope your new jacket is nice and warm. Godot is a handsome bird.

  19. Sorry for the delay in answering, the pelleted feed is Purina Sow & Pig. I got it because that’s what farmer Bob was feeding though Percy only gets a scant cup a day. He’s mostly eating hay and I think is a little overly plump but I’d rather see that going into winter. He’s alert and his eyes are clear and bright and his coat is thick and shiny. I have thought of switching over to alfalfa pellets – he didn’t seem to care much for the cubes, even when they were soaked but maybe I’ll just leave well enough alone.

    I am not a great fan of winter, I haven’t walked at all this week because 12*F with a gusty wind is just too painful and I miss it. I do like the warmth of the wood stove and the chill of the upstairs when the woodstove keeps the furnace from running – good sleeping weather. I love the sharp clean-ness (if that’s a word) of the air in winter and I love cozying (another word?) under the afghan on the couch with a book in the evening. I might not really like it but I would not care to live in a world without winter, it makes one appreciate spring that much more!

    I am still doggedly hanging on to my Carhart, even though the inside of the hood is full of melted spots from the brush burning chores and the sleeves are pretty ragged. Carharts do have notoriously aggravating zippers though.

    • Huh.. Purina sow and pig is what I feed Sheila when i am feeling too lazy to make her dinner.. good to know.
      Poor old Tima is a bit of a porker tho, so more often I feed her a little bird feed, she loves the cardinal mix with the dried fruit and sunflower seeds.. but she really does need to get used to hay before the snow comes and covers her pastures.

  20. It’s so good for the spirits to offer up gratitude, and there is much that is good on the farmy. I feel virtuous myself when I heat water on the wood stove and use it to do the dishes.

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