On Ice

I took this video a few days ago, while my daughter and I were out playing Pokemon Go (Clamperl is adorable!). We were parked by the lake, which was busier than usual.

Yes, that is open water at the front! There is a storm drain where the open water reaches the shore. Just up the street behind us, there was a major water main break, so lots of flowing water at a time of year when there is normally none. The side of the street, completely engulfing what is normally the parking lane, was a river of water stretching the length of the block. No surprise that much water did this to the ice.

This is also where vehicle access to the ice, with an ice road to the ice fishing shacks, is. It was blocked today, for an event. A track is cleared on the ice, and people get to learn how, or practice, driving on ice.

The ice fishers don’t have much season left. The official word is that it all has be cleared off by March 10. Counting today, they’ve got just 12 days left. With the bitter cold we’ve had this winter, I would not be surprised if the ice were still safe to drive on, even after that, except for the fact that they will be going out with ice breakers after the 10th. This lake is big enough for tides. Without breaking up the ice first, as it weakens and rots in warmer weather, the tide will break it up and push it in, damaging docks (the permanent parts that don’t get taken ashore in the fall) in the process.

The Re-Farmer

Snowfall Fallout

Ah, the joys of dealing with a fresh dump of snow.

I am very grateful that we didn’t get the major storms others got – and that are still being predicted!  We don’t have to deal with floods or power outages, and massive amounts of snow.  We just have minor stuff to deal with, on what turned out to be a very lovely day.

On taking feed out to the deer, I paused to visit Eunice, who has started to loose part of her eyes. 😀


This photo, however, was taken from our living room window, and there are 5 deer in it.

You can almost see one of them in the bushes, between the cross and the dead tree, and part of one through some trees, out in the garden area.

Eunice made them all very nervous, and for some time we saw them creep closer around the spruce tree on the left, where they usually come in, or go into the spruces, back out along the edge of the spruces or among the apple trees, chasing each other around, leaving, coming back…

Not a one made it to the feed.

I had wondered if the presence of Eunice would have that affect.

I hope they come back tonight, but either way, tomorrow I think I will make a small trail of feed, starting under that spruce bough, and around Eunice.  We’ll see how that helps.

Early this afternoon, one of my daughters and I went into town to pick up some prescription refills for my husband.  While there, I had them try adding the insurance to my file again, explaining that the problem was at the insurance end, not theirs.  If they fixed it, it would work.  If not, I’d just pick up my husband’s prescriptions and my own would wait a bit longer.

I picked up my husband’s prescriptions.

After we got home, the girls went out their window to shovel off some of the snow.  It’s already melting, but it they can make it so that the melt will go into the eavestrough instead of into their wall, that would be awesome.

As they were finishing that, I took the stuff for the burn barrel out.  They won’t do a burn until dark, so they can see any sparks that need to be put out.  I got a giggle out of this…


It’s a cat path, from wherever it is they’ve been saying the night lately. 😀

(The sticks in the foreground are the remains of Sydney, an earlier snowman my younger daughter had made. 😀 )

Since it was so nice out, I decided to take advantage of it and do some shoveling for a path of my own.


See that electricity meter on the post?  We need to be able to reach that to read it.

The snow piled in front is the edge of where my brother used his tractor and snowblower, near the burn barrel.

Also, there is no way we’re getting anything from the house to the shed any time soon.  That red building is the old pump shack, and the shed is behind that.  The driveway itself goes as far as the pump shack, then peters off.  The rest of the way to the shed is tall grass.

Ah, well.  We can maneuver around the stuff a bit longer.


Yay!  I can reach the meter now!

There was about a foot of fresh snow on top of the old snow, with a thin layer of ice melt in between.  Digging this out required breaking through the the layers with the shovel, first, about half a foot at a time.

Thanks to the time stamps on my phone’s file names, I could even tell how long it took me to do it.  Only about 15 minutes!  Not bad at all.

Before heading back inside, I walked around to the back of the house to look at the trees that are growing at angles.  I really, really am not comfortable with the two that are growing over our roof – especially the one that’s actually touching the roof, but there is another tree that overhangs the opening to the garden.  It’s very beautiful, framing the space and all draped in winter’s glory.  Unfortunately, it’s also tilted right from its roots, with three major branches all leaning the same way.

It’s only a matter of time before a large snowfall will cause it to fall.  This is not a young tree.  If we want to save it from breaking at the main trunk, we’ll at least have to cut back the biggest section leaning over the yard, and likely one other section.  That should take enough weight stress off the main trunk that the weight of the third section won’t be a problem, even if it’s still growing off at an angle.

Oh, how I’d love to have an arborist come in and go over the trees in the yard.

Which reminds me; I did a bit of research for lifts.  Turns out we can rent a scissor lift for a week for $480.  They are drivable.  Potentially, we could rent one, somehow get it out here, then spend a week using it to get all the pruning done at once.

It’s going to be a while before we can afford that, and there are many things higher on the priority list.  But it’s a potential option for the future.

After checking on the trees and walking back to the main entry, I noticed something.

I now know why there is a rock in the old bird feeder.


The weight of snow on its roof had caused it to tip.  There is only one nail?  Screw? holding it to its base.

I straightened it out and all the snow fell off the roof.


Rather than fixing the base, someone put a rock on it to act as a counterbalance.  The recent snowfall put enough weight on the roof that the rock was no longer enough, and over it went.  With the snow knocked off, it is now heavy enough to keep the whole thing from tipping over again.

I wonder who came up with the idea of using the rock like that?  It’s rather creative, but not a good substitute for actually… you know… Fixing the thing.  My guess is, once the rock was put on, the fact that it is broken got forgotten about.  I have no idea how long it’s been since anyone has tried to put birdseed in it – oddly, it still has old popcorn kernels in it.  Nothing else.  Just popcorn kernels.

So I guess we’ll have to see if it’s still in good enough shape to warrant fixing it, or if we should just replace it.  I’m thinking fix, but we’ll figure out for sure later on.

Another curious find for this place!  I’m sure we will find many more.

The Re-Farmer

Having some fun

As I mentioned in my previous post, today’s snowfall was perfect snowman snow!

My daughters agreed.

They called me upstairs without telling me why, to see if I would notice their new friend.


His name is Nail.

Rusty Nail.

For some reason, there was a rusty nail on the roof, so they incorporated it into their little snow dude.

Yes, they made a snowman on the roof, outside their window.

Then used ink to make a face.

As we were talking about it and how the snow is perfect for making snowmen, they started commenting on how they should make a big one in the yard.

Then they promptly headed out to do exactly that.


Here is my older daughter, adding the final touches.


Meet Eunice.

I wonder how the deer will handle seeing it there?  It’s right near the feeding station.

When they were done, my older daughter came in, but my younger daughter stayed out to pet the outside cats.

Then she made this, facing my office window.


I’m told it’s not finished yet, so it doesn’t have a name.

Apparently, it needs abs.

I love my daughters.

The Re-Farmer