Bitter cold, and sad news

The cold snap that has been working its way across the prairies has hit us.

It was -31C/-23F, with a wind chill of -39C/-38F this morning. At the time I write this, we have warmed up to -29C/-20F with a wind chill of -31C/-23F. The weather alert on my app is still saying wind chills may reach between -40C/F to -50C/-58F. !!!

Hard to believe that, tomorrow, we’re supposed to warm up to -9C/15F!

Heading out to feed the critters meant layering up. Two pairs of socks in my new, rated to -40C, winter boots. Two pairs of pants. A t-shirt under my sweatshirt. A hoodie – hood up – under my down filled park – also hood up! and double layered insulated gloves.

I was rather impressed when I saw this under the door.

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Left Hanging – on multiple levels

While doing my rounds this morning, making my way through the spruce grove, I noticed something dangling that wasn’t there before.

It looks like a section of tree came down during our recent high winds.

But where did it come from?

A surprising distance away, actually. It’s the top of a mostly dead tree. There are only a few remaining live branches on the south side of the trunk, from what I can see. It seems that the top now hanging in other trees is where most of the living branches were.

After checking the trail cam files later on, the tree wasn’t the only thing left hanging.

I have some decisions to make.

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Got it

Today, I took advantage of a much warmer day (we reached -7C this afternoon) before the temperatures plummet again, and headed to a nearby city to see if we could get a replacement hot water tank.

I’d already phoned and had instructions, but we’d never been to this location before, so my daughter and I took the time to look around. We have been discussing a building project for the summer, that I will blog about later in the year, so we went to see if we could price out stuff like mortar and insulation.

It turns out this is not the hardware store we could go for these materials.

Then I went to customer service with my sticker from off our hot water tank.

In maybe 5 minutes, paperwork in hand, I drove around to the back of the building, to a particular shed, where a new replacement tank was ready and waiting for me.

It now sits in our dining room, waiting to be installed.

It was so fast and easy, I wish I’d thought of going somewhere else, long ago! Not one person I spoke to thought of it, either. It was certainly worth the hour and a half total in driving time!

One of the amazing things about it is how light it is. Compared to the old tank that got replaced shortly after we moved here, which is so heavy I intend to dismantle it and remove it piece by piece, rather than risk damaging the stairs with the weight, or someone getting injured taking it around to the other basement and hauling it out that way. Assuming it could even be moved to the other side of the stairs in the first place.

My daughters and I had wondered about how the old tank was brought down there in the first place. It occurred to me that it was probably installed while the new part of the house was still under construction. The new part basement would have been completely open, except for the support pillars, and there would have been just a wood burning furnace in the old part basement on one side, and the stairs on the other. The tank was probably brought from the new part basement, through the space now filled by the electric furnace.

Getting rid of the damaged tank will be much, much easier!

So now we just have to pay for the installation. I suppose we could install it ourselves, but I want the plumber to look at our well pump, too. Now that we don’t have to come up with the money for a new tank (the price was $419, before taxes), on top of the cost of labour, we’ll be able to get it done at the end of this month!

I am so looking forward to getting that done!

The Re-Farmer

Photo(s) of the Day: headed for high ground

A while back, we spotted little Susan, in an unusual place.

The cats don’t typically climb straight up this dead tree, as there are many others with convenient branches that are easier for them.

She was, however, very determined to keep going higher. Something was off. What could it be?

Ah.

Our furry neighbour came to visit!

He just can’t seem to understand why the cats won’t play with him! 😀

As I write this, Susan is curled up and snoozing behind me, recovering quite well from her date with the vet!

It's warmed up a bit…

Of course, that’s a relative statement.

When I got up this morning, it was -33C/-27F with a “feels like” of -42C/-44F.

I’m happy to say that the van handled the temperatures quite well. Yes, we’ve been diligent in maintenance and improvements as much as we can, but it’s still a 15 yr old vehicle with almost 430,000 km on it, so I’m always going to be paranoid about that thing. :-/

Motivated by the temperatures, I stayed up last night to finish a shrug I was crocheting for myself. When my upper back gets cold, it triggers my chronic cough, so I just wanted a little something to throw on while around the house. I am wearing it right now, and feeling nice and toasty!

I think this is the first time I’ve deliberately made something, just for myself. 😀

The Re-Farmer