Back in January I made a blog post titled, "I Think Winter Forgot Us."

Well...we received 20 inches of snow on Saturday so I spoke too soon. 

When Travis measured it, I couldn't believe it! I thought he was tricking me and had measured a snow drift, but in fact, he had simply measured a flat space outside. The snow started last Thursday and didn't let up until yesterday afternoon.  We also got some freezing rain to top off the layer of snow, however, we got that freezing rain as the temperatures rose from hovering around 19 degrees Fahrenheit to 34 degrees. That's a big difference and the snow is currently melting fast.

I wish I were feeling better today to enjoy a little bit of time outside because the sun is making a rare appearance.  I woke with a headache and general malaise but I believe it's just my body's way of telling me to take it easy. Now that the weather is mellowing out, all I see around me is the work that needs to be done!  Chewy has a large poop pile in a corner of his stall because we couldn't get the poo shuffled out to the manure pile with the wheel barrow, through knee deep snow. The water troughs are getting gross and need dumped and scrubbed...yada yada, etc. etc.

Feeding the farm animals and tending to chores through the freezing temperatures and knee deep snow filled weekend really took a lot of energy!  Winter is beautiful but takes so much effort to do normal daily activities. We must bundle up for every trip we take outside. There is shoveling of snow to be done, wood to keep bringing in and putting in the wood stove, and we don't use our normal pathway of going down the stone steps to the hay barn because it becomes too slippery and hard to find footing, so we traipse around and take the long way.  We also were feeding the outside animals much more often than normal to keep a steady stream of hay and feed, and thawed water in front of them. Eating keeps them warm. Then we could come inside to warm up and head back out for the next task of shoveling again or getting snow off the roof tops. At least the kids aren't little anymore. I remember the days when I would bundle, un-bundle, and re-bundle them continuously throughout the snow days so they could build snow men and go sledding.  I miss those days but I can honestly say I don't too much miss that part of mothering. Haha! 

Winter 2021

The animals fared very well through the cold.  I guess sometimes I forget how equipped they are designed by mother nature to endure weather filled seasons. Our horse Willow now has a beautiful, soft, gleaming coat after being washed from snow!  I even hugged her neck this morning and breathed in her fresh horse scent because to me, that's just a part of heaven on earth. I know this beautiful clean coat she's sporting now won't last because the melting will commence and the mud will reveal itself once again, and what is the first thing Willow will do?  Why roll in it of course!  I can not tell you why but she has always loved to roll in the mud.  

Another great observation I have made about horses, and animas in general, is that even though they still must endure more wetness and mud through the late winter and early spring, all the animals will start shedding their winter coats and by mid spring, once again, Willow will be shiny and beautiful. If we stand back and observe, we can witness these subtle changes and miracles that take place with each passing season and year.

I was able to capture some beautiful moments in the snow which I shared in a quick clip on YouTube. As hard as it is to make it through a harsh snow storm, I will try not to complain because this is the way winter should be!  Hopefully this snow melt will create a green and lush spring, with a drought less summer to follow. 

I am so grateful that our area did not experience any power outages. Not even so much as a flicker! Not only were we spared during the powerful winds leading up to the snow storm, but we had no felled trees or power loss to speak of through any of the tough weather patterns.  The Portland area was not so lucky and some are still without power there now. They had much more ice and it caused a lot of trees to crash down under the weight.

Here on the homestead, we have our canned foods and chickens with eggs. We have a heavy supply of animal feeds. We have a grand stockpile of bottled waters that we have been collecting and adding to since moving here over a year ago.  We buy water all year long, just in case, because if the power goes out the well won't run. We also put the wood stove in for heat when we moved here, and Travis and the boys work on stocking up our wood piles every fall, a year's worth in advance. We have lantern light when I feel we have enough supplies to at least get us through a few weeks while we make an alternative plan or wait for the blessed repair workers to work their magic when the power goes out, or heaven forbid if the whole grid would go down. 

I hope that everyone has a plan to fall back on. It is always better to be safe than sorry, but at the same time, we must be able to go with the flow, problem solve together, and have faith that all will work out. 

Well, if you have read this far, thank you so much! I must get back to work on some school stuff now. I just felt the urge to make a blog post to update our current happenings. These posts make great memories for me to look back on as well as share with others what it's like to live a rural lifestyle. I wish everyone love and blessings and I hope you were able to escape any issues over this winter season so far.

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Many blessings to you all!

Amy Darr

3 Corners Farm

Mosier Or. U.S.A.