Winter this year will not catch me off guard. I have stocked up my wood pile, installed a propane heater as a backup heat source inside the house and completed a full maintenance on the snow plow.
This being my first full winter here on the homestead has me a little apprehensive. I feel blessed to have had such a long summer but recently temperatures have begun to drop. The animal waters freeze overnight and I have had to break the ice on my horse’s water trough morning and evening. I have done some research on propane livestock tank heaters and will invest in one for next year but this year my horse will spend the rest of winter in town at the local saddle club, if only for the sake of ease. The chickens and rabbits are a little less complicated as I can switch out their water containers morning and evening and there is only a short amount of time that they are without water when it freezes the last few hours of the night. The chickens don’t seem to mind much as they typically sleep through the entire evening.
The steep decline in temperatures is not what fills me with dread, mostly my fear is the more balmy days that bring along snow storms. My poor Frankenstein truck is not exactly in tip-top shape. This weekend was time for an all-around detail on the much deserving chevy engine wrapped up in an international body. Handy dandy Luke came to the rescue and showed me how to replace the oil filter and oil. He also helped reconnect the throttle rod which had come loose from the pedal the last time I had driven it. Then while all of this was being done we realized there was a massive fuel leak somewhere within the engine. After backtracking the leak we found the fuel pump had a hole in it. So a new one was purchased and installed. After everything was buttoned back up and in as good as shape as humanly possible at this point. I put on the tire chains and parked it beside the house. The work mule is ready for our first snow, I hope.
A small project became a large one. The truck could still use a few hours under a welder as the snow plow on the front looks like it could break off any day now but it is what God provided and until I can afford a new one(or new to me) it is what I have.
Homestead life is not an easy life but it is rewarding. I simply have to remember to take care of myself. I can begin to feel very run down with as many projects as I take on, topped by the fact that I work a full-time job off the homestead. The dream is to be able to walk away from that job and simply work from the homestead, I am not quite there yet. Maybe one day I will spend my Winters curled up spinning fiber by the fire and crocheting, spend Springs gardening, work Summers at farmers markets and view Fall from horseback. One day this homestead will be my livelihood but today is not that day, nor tomorrow but I have the patience and the will to work hard for what I love and desire.