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Just another day in paradise!

Really? This was a dusting forecast for us.

That is my arena.

When it snows, it is absolutely breathtaking for about oh say 10 minutes.  Once I put the camera away and am snow blind.  Then I have to take a while, getting over  seeing without everything being bright PINK  before I can get to work shoveling.

A table, stacked with several feet of snow.

Then at about this point, it had totally stopped being amusing.  Or pretty. Or anything other than just WORK!  If I could just stay inside and not worry about clearing the vehicles or the roads etc etc it would be nice!

My lilac trees under about a million pounds of powder.

I sent this photo to our local weatherman on channel 4 and he aired it.  The area we live in was special, we had 20+ inches of snow overnight.

This morphed into more rain than ever, which melted all the snow away pretty quickly.  Mud.  Mud.  More mud.

Then last night, at 1:26 am, something woke me up.  The sound of terrible wind, freight train sounding winds.  The local CalTrans weather tower clocked the wind at 85 mph.  ENOUGH already!  Now there is more tree limbs on the ground than ever before.  It narrowly missed my trailer, my truck (which was parked in the back, which should have been well clear of the trees)

Just really varied and wild weather.  Enjoy your evening and stay warm folks!

 

The new to us propane heating stove – installed!

Ahhhh!

It has been a long time in saving and planning and finally today was the day!  I had begun looking for a used propane heating stove this summer.  After 10 years here, part of those years we heated with propane. Part with electric.  The last four or so with wood.  It finally came to me, the realization that using the little parlor wood stove was the issue.  We found that we could be continually stuffing wood into it and it never and I mean NEVER heated the #$@% house.  I am told that the reasoning was that it should be used in a harmonious way with a propane stove.  Oh?  Whatever.  I am Southern California born and lived there for 30 years.  What do I know? To this point, I was always worried about the pipes in the kitchen and laundry room.  The bathroom pipes I have heat tape on.  But the other rooms? Gak.  Like do not close the laundry room door at night.  Potential disaster.  For the kitchen I do leave the cabinet doors under the kitchen sink open.  I will actually continue to do so for both rooms….but right now, it is over 70 degrees in the living room.  I think the old farmhouse is going to faint 🙂

That last winter before my husband passed, he was freezing all the time.  The large old propane heating stove did a good job.  I would step indoors and poof, my glasses would instantly fog up 😉 It also showed me it was possible to use $300 a month in propane.  Before we resumed using the wood stove, I had the big old stove lit.  Then it nearly killed us with carbon monoxide.  Seriously. Very ill.  It was bad.  The big stove was then dubbed the “murder stove”  It is now out in my son’s work area.  I don’t know what is really in store for it, but it is no longer in my living room so I don’t care!  This stove is something like 80% efficient vs the murder stove and the 52% efficiency.  It is going to cost more than wood, but I am still thrilled!  To think that I will find the living room warm in the morning, versus the 48 degrees it was the last week – heavenly!

So, I am happy now.   I appreciate it a lot.  Stay warm all, I certainly have a better opportunity to !

Our best hen-pet-feathered friend, Tweety.

As anyone who knows me or reads the blog knows, I love birds.  Domestic birds, chickens, and wild things.  Owls.  But this chicken pictured above, was the best.  Dubbed “Tweety” by the girl who raised and loved her, she came to live with us when the girl’s mom decided she was a rooster.  It was either take her or the next stop would put this chicken into a stew pot. Eeeeeeewwww! So, Tweety came to stay.  Her early months were spent being with the girl.  She was carried everywhere and learned to observe and “help” as she decided we needed.  One day, not long after her arrival here, I was standing at my outdoor feed can.  Tossing wild bird seed to the wild things.  Tweety came over of course to see.  She sat down next to my foot and was bocking quietly to herself.  I was busy, and so apparently was she.  After a few minutes, I had gotten things straightened out and was done.  Tweety let out a loud “BOCK” and stood up.  There, next to my foot, was a perfect fresh from the Tweety egg.  A rooster? Nope!

She was the ringleader of the hens, not the top hen, but the smartest girl.  I could count on being rushed when I opened the back door, no matter where she might be.  When she heard that door open, it was pedal to the metal and she would come tearing up to the back porch.  She would come to a halt and inquire “Bawwwwwkkkkk????” peering up at me past the feathers that always fell into her eyes, looking for treats.  She was hilarious.

She did not like the Ameracauna chickens we had.  They are bossy and always had an uneasy truce between them.  If I was even a tiny bit slow tossing seed or treats when the girls were outside the coop, I was told about it.  Tweety would come and stand next to my foot and say “BAWWWWWWKKKKKKKKKK!!!!!!” and then peck the top of my foot with quite a bit of force.  Point taken Tweety.  I always hurried.  I re-homed the Ameracaunas recently, and it made the yard very quiet and relaxed.  Interesting.  She was soft and kind and the only chicken I had that would tell my full grown white peacocks where to go and when to do it.

I loved her “hair” and the way it flopped over her pretty eyes.  She would have to really tilt her head to the side to look up at me past those Polish derived feathers on top of her head.  She was a good girl.

She passed away yesterday.  It was late morning, after I carried her around with me while doing chores.  She observed the food and water giving to the other birds.  She observed treats being consumed….but I knew.  When I put her back in her safe coop inside the main coop, I had the opportunity to do what I always try to do when a loved one is leaving us.   I of course thanked her for being such a good friend.  That we loved her so much and that I would miss her always.   I felt it in my soul when she left this place, even though I was in town.   I teared up, I was not ready for her to be gone.   When I got home, I found her, lying peacefully with her beak next to the uneaten treats I had given her, eyes closed, that cute fluff of feathers still fluffy but too still.  Tweety was the best.

I will miss you forever my Tweety.  Thank you for bringing so much joy to my life.  Rest in peace my little feathered friend.

Ah. Nothing like 20″ of surprise snow.

Culture shock for me.  Our winters of late had not had this much all season. Plus never this much overnight. EVER.

I have other photos, but need to load them to the computer. Last night, when I was in the dining room talking to my son, I heard a high pitched whistle call.  The young Great Horned Owl’s voice is changing.  I went outside and whistled back and forth with him for perhaps 15 minutes.  I walked out to the bridge across the frozen creekbed under the tree he was in. He flew from branch to branch, echoing my whistle and then trying a new voice out.  Standing there in the darkness, looking at the tree illuminated against the pitch black velvet of the sky – the bright stars like blazing diamonds we conversed.  This is the young owl that had gotten caught in some large chicken wire on the side of the dog kennel earlier in the year. The previous people who owned this place left an assortment of animal dangers and this one had slipped past me when a deer had jumped into the dog kennel and broken a post and took down the side section of  wire.  His parents alerted me to the problem, the male flew off while mom owl watched. That baby just sat there and waited. No beak clacking, no feather rattling. Just stood and watched me calmly get his feet loose and then once free, flew off with mom owl.  I wrote about it in the blog when it happened.  You can search for it through the function on this page if you are interested. Now this owl seems happy to spend time chatting and my heart was filled with joy that so wild a creature would take the time to visit 🙂

❤ owls!

Off to town for some meetings and appointments. Shopping and perhaps a Peppermint Mocha Frappachino with extra bittersweet chocolate curls. Have a good day all!