Friday, December 12, 2014

First Big Snow, white Christmas?

Remember when we looked forward to a snow day?  Since moving to My Happy Acres I decided to do my level best to remember those feelings and embrace them.  Whenever I wake up and find the world blanketed in a heavy layer of white, instead of dreading the work, I think about when I was little and helped shovel our driveway (which when you're little seems like it's nine miles long).  I would pretend to be building a giant snow fort or making a great wall or canyon.  I learned that if I cut the snow into blocks and stack them along the sides, I could grab them later for making snow men or forts.  Mom said that she thought what I was doing was a complete waste of effort but I had a plan.
This morning we woke up to at least 14" on the ground and some very interesting drifts to muddle through.  

'hmmmm. Can’t get out the door without clearing away the snow.' started my outing with shovel in hand.  (I paused, looked up and smiled.  The sun was just peaking out making everything all glittery.  how pretty it was.)
'hmmmm. Can’t get to the equipment barn without digging a path.'  (Did you know that the song, 'Low Bridge everybody down' makes a great shoveling song? )
'hmmmmm.  That’s a big drift against the barn door.'  (I opened the door and stepped inside to look back at the solid snow wall with the impression of the door on it.  You could see the layers of hard and soft snow, tiny flake and pelleted snow that came down last night.  Surprisingly the light twinkled through the lighter layers underneath the heavy wet blanket that lay on top.)
'hmmmm.  The snow is all the way up to the second rung of the steel gate.'  (Shovel in hand, I cleared away the drift amused by the little mouse trails that tubed their way along the length of the pipe.)
In the winter, instead of my trusty wagon, the dead sled or stag drag is used to tote stuff to and from the animal barn.  The snow shoes were pretty handy, making the trip to the animal gate a breeze rather than a trial.  Tromping along I thought about the writings of Jack London (a favorite author of mine when I was about 11 or 12).  I was a 49er making my way to the Yukon (although my trusty canine companion was still sacked out in his warm bed dreaming of bacon snacks).
The department of highways had done their usual fine job of keeping the road clear, although it did add an additional challenge by creating a high wall of snow to mount. 
'hmmmm. More snow against the animal gate and barn.'  (Good thing I gave myself an extra hour to take care of everybody this morning.  Snow was steadily cleared away while I noticed where the rabbits and perhaps an owl had left their impressions in the pasture snow.)
The little goat girls were excited to get outside.  A small patch was cleared from their barn door to allow them to have a clear place to lie in the sun.  They bounced about before racing back and forth between their paddock and play yard. 

Sum total it took about two hours to do what usually takes about 45 minutes to do.  By thinking about sweet memories and how beautiful the world can be made otherwise difficult work a more pleasant task.

A light dusting of snow has started again.  So are the joys of winter.

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