Day by day there are fewer and fewer leaves on the trees in the back yard, and soon we are going to have to shift to heated water bottles, or crocks for water as it gets too cold every night. But we have been adjusting and getting ready for winter.
First things first, all of the plants we want to keep alive, we have moved inside. It is why we started off with our herb garden in dirt pots, and it has paid off. All of the tomato plants that were in the ground are obviously, dead as a door nail. But the night before the first hard freeze we brought everything inside that we could. And it seems to be doing well. Sorry for the quality of the picture Right apparently my camera phone doesn't do well in dim light looking directly into the light. One of our challenges with this has been to make sure that we don't ruin the floor or any of the nice wood tables. Fortunately as a wind fall we came by this small folding table that fits quite nicely in front of the door. I had an idea for a neat little shelf that would clip on to the window sill, and have an angle brace and so on. Sometimes the Lady of the House just looks at something and says "This will work" and promptly gets it set up while I'm planning my long term ideas.
Obviously there are many other things going in to preparing for winter. First of all, as everyone knows I have been bucking and splitting fire wood. Every night when I get home from work which is usually just before the sun goes behind the hills, I get to work bucking and splitting. I usually get about an hour in before the sun is too far down to work safely. Progress has been slow but steady, and we do have a good 3 cords ready to burn as is. The other thing, the Snow Blower we purchased not too long ago will be being delivered today between 1 and 2. As much as I'd like to be there, our boarder will be there and can be awake to receive it so I'm going to stay at work and come poke at it tomorrow, since I won't be home from work tonight until late.
We are also looking seriously at a winter CSA. For those of you who don't know what a CSA is this link explains it wonderfully http://www.localharvest.org/csa/. In essence it is just we pay ahead of time for produce. The winter CSA is with a local farm that has a hoop house and plans to grow winter hearty crops that are good for storage. Price for return sounds like a good investment for us, so we will probably do that to keep eating well and local as much as possible over the winter.
Finally, the rabbits. Dawn has started nest building today for her new litter, so we provided her cardboard and lots of hay. We still haven't gotten Twilight to breed, but we have a few ideas on how to do it without just traumatizing her. We will talk about those when we actually see some results. We have already taken out the cooling stones since they are no longer needed, and in fact are counter productive at night. Within a few weeks I will be stringing extension cord out to the hutches and putting a water proof power strip to hang heated water bottles outside to make sure all of the rabbits have warm, running, clean water at all times. Beyond that, with their thick coats it will be up to them to handle the winter.
Sorry for today's post being a bit quick. I spent most of last night working on tacking down the edges of the carpet in the studio, and getting started on making shelves. While there are some photos of that, I'm going to want to show it off when I actually have something to show for it. So, for the rest of the post today three pictures showing pictures of the back yard in different seasons. The first photo is from 10/29 last year, almost exactly a year ago just at the beginning of that crazy Halloween snow storm. The second is from spring in May. I don't have one specifically from Summer unfortunately, but the final one at the bottom is this morning with gorgeous colors as the leaves finally fall and we prepare to get hammered with snow within days at the soonest, and weeks at the latest.