As I woke up this morning, it became very apparent that it was cold outside. As I watched the wind blow the falling snow sideways out the bedroom window, I realized that I needed to bundle up really well to do my morning chores.
When winds whip like it was this morning, there isn’t much that you can do when the wind will find any gap there is in your clothing. You get odd spots of cold that enter up the back of your jacket or find that thin spot in your pants.
It always amazes me the resilience of animals on days like today. The cattle, with their leather coats and thick fur will still be standing at bales and eating with their faces away from the wind. The pigs will dig up bedding and bury themselves deep down in the pack. The alpaca will just find a spot out of the wind and chew away on the stack of hay.
The dog goes out and buries her nose in the snow and creates a snow beard all over her muzzle and nose.
The temperature was 3 degrees. The winds sustaining at 15-20 mph. It was brutal cold on me. Doesn’t mean I can sit back and not do chores. They still must be done. Frozen body parts, cold fingers that stick to gate chains and all. It must be done. They still need hay and the pigs still need grain. Everyone still needs water, more just because of the wind.
This is the busy time of year for me. The days when animals require more food stuff and more water, nearly twice the regular amount. It’s hard work, carrying and moving 50 lb bags at a time about 100′ to put into feeder three bags morning and two bags at night.
It’s carrying bucket after bucket of water to another pig to keep her in water as she’s nursing piglets. It’s carrying buckets of feed and arms full of hay and bedding. It’s freezing on the tractor to feed bales with no cab.
Days like today test your fortitude as a farmer. Frozen hoses WILL test your patience to the limits. Days like today make me feel blessed for the technology that has created super warm carhardtt thermal long johns, super warm socks and fleece lined coats. It also makes me thankful that I know how to craft crochet and knit hats, scarves and gloves. It makes me thankful for a warm house, warm blankets and a warm stove… even more thankful for a waiting hot pot of coffee.
It’s so hard to believe that just a few short days ago, it was in the seventies and a few short days from now it’s calling for 50’s and rain…. two cold days, just need to make it through these couple of days.
I wish you could all understand the drain on the energy it takes to not just stay warm but to do all this extra work too. It’s not just physical but emotional too. It weighs heavy in your heart and your head, it tests you mentally and physically. It really makes me want to crawl back in bed and take a midday nap… unfortunately, there is too much work to be done.
For now, I’m enjoying my solitude and the time spent making sure that everyone stays warm… there still is no feeling in the world like sitting with the piglets and having them share some love as they nibble on your boots and pants. Cold or not, that’s still a miracle moment that feels like a slice of heaven on earth.
If you wonder where I’ve disappeared to for the next couple of days… Might want to send someone to make sure I’m not frozen in the pasture LOL