Friday, January 16, 2009

the bitter cold

It is remarkably cold outside. I just got in from feeding the sheep and birds, and I still can't feel my toes. It's been cold all week, really cold. Like last night it hit -28 in Barre. In don't know how cold Sandgate is, but let's just say it's not exactly tank-top weather out there. This weekend should finally bring us back into the double-digit temperatures. I have never been this excited to see a thermometer hit 15 degrees in my life.

I moved the rabbits from their outdoor hutches to inside the oil tank room in straw-lined dog crates. It's not the Ritz, but they are in a nice 50-degree room with unfrozen water bottles and a warm place to sleep. The rabbits don't have the heat lamp the birds do - or the hardy wool that the sheep do. So they get some time inside till this weather gets a little more reasonable. The dogs have no comment. I woke up with Jazz and Annie curled up right next to me. We stay warm.

This week has been rough. Without going into details, both my family and professional life got shaken up. But I am happy to report my own little world here at Cold Antler has remained intact. At least for now. And I'll be celebrating nothing in particular this weekend with fire and music. Sandgate's having the annual Christmas is Burning Bonfire and Potluck. Everyone brings their old dead trees and there's a big bonfire with a community potluck. And since a few musicians (read me and some co-workers and friends) are bound to show up and make themselves comfortable in some corner of the host's farmhouse - I am fairly certain some old southern mountain songs will be ringing out in the cold north. I'll hopefully get some photos for you guys, they say it's a HUGE blaze, and I think after all these nights below zero, a bonfire sounds perfect.


Blogger Anna M said...

A bit over 20 below here this morning and I think that bonfire sounds very nice right about now.

I'm having trouble with very cold Corgi feet in this weather. Do you have boots for your dogs?

January 16, 2009 at 8:49 AM  
Blogger Jenna said...

I do, but we only use them if ice build up into their paw pads while mushing.

January 16, 2009 at 8:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I hope that the shakeups in family and business work out as best and quickly as possible. As you know, from these times we all grow, even though it hurts. Hearts and thoughts from your readers are with you.


January 16, 2009 at 9:15 AM  
Anonymous Chad said...

Hey, Jenna

Sorry to hear about your family and professional shakeups. But at least it's cold! I'm confident both (uh, all three) situations will resolve themselves given enough time.

Teaching at a boarding school, we never have weather-related delays or anything. 'Till today. They postponed classes until 10:00 today so the kids could stay in their dorms and barracks. Lessee - it's 20 till now, and -24. Yup, that worked well!

It's supposed to reach 13 tomorrow. Like you, I'm pretty excited by that prospect. At least the snow will quit squeaking. Even Mini doesn't want to spend time outside now - so it MUST be cold (she isn't really happy out until it gets to arround 20).

January 16, 2009 at 9:41 AM  
Blogger Carrie said...

Schools are closed in Chattanooga today because of the cold. There's not even any ice but you know we Southerners get scared when the temps go down!

I have hope all your personal knots will untangle.

January 16, 2009 at 9:52 AM  
Anonymous jim johnson said...

Yikes. Family AND workplace?
Two of the basic questions. Emily Dickinson, another woman in rural New England, gave the key to her own freedom:

"I dwell in possibility"...
For Occupation - This -
The spreading wide my narrow Hands
To gather Paradise"

Keep dwelling in possibility, and making it a reality for the rest of us.

January 16, 2009 at 10:22 AM  
Blogger Diana said...

Wow, north Idaho is a balmy 26 degrees and doesn't look to drop below 23 for a week. Who'da thunk we'd be like tropics to the rest of the country! Just don't ask about snow accumulation. Fortunately, we did some melting over the last week, so it doesn't look as bad as 2 weeks ago... closer to normal anyway. It goes without saying that the chickens are definitely feeling "cooped up."

I'm so glad you survived the work shake-up. Would have royally sucked if you'd had to suffer 2 Januaries in a row. As all have noted here... time heals all wounds.

Big hug!

January 16, 2009 at 11:26 AM  
Blogger Barb and Steve said...

Hang in there. A lot of good vibes are heading your way to help you through your troubles.

January 16, 2009 at 1:50 PM  
Blogger chris said...

Hi Jenna-

I've been reading for a couple of months - and really look forward to your posts. Had a nice falafel sandwich while reading today. Hang in there, know you're an inspiration for this urbanite panging for country living - one who hasn't had the willpower to make the sacrifices to do so - yet.


January 16, 2009 at 2:10 PM  
Blogger Jeff_in_Pawlet said...

Whew, I worried about you after reading the paper this morning. I hope everything else gets better for you.

January 16, 2009 at 2:41 PM  
Anonymous tammy said...

Wow - that's cold! It was -11 here in PA at 8:00 this morning; the bunnies, dog and cat are all snuggled in here but our furnace is having some sort of issue - it's 60 in here and I miss the wood stove in our old place. Potluck dinner here tonight too - hope everyone dresses warm.
LOVE your blog and read it every day - thanks for writing!

January 16, 2009 at 5:29 PM  
Anonymous Emilee said...

Hi! I just saw your book at Chapters this morning and thought I would check out your blog and see what it was all about. I know what you mean about the cold, I'm in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada today it is -21, not as cold as a yesterday but still...brrrr. I will check out your blog some more...perhaps start one of my own! :)


January 16, 2009 at 6:07 PM  
Blogger Stephany said...

Home is a haven from the crazy that is the outside world. Your plans for the weekend sound lovely.

Glad to hear that all the inhabitants of Cold Antler are keeping warm.

January 16, 2009 at 7:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We just got over a two week cold snap with below zero temps. Was -18 one morning last week, this week temps have been in the 30's - felt like spring the other day when we reached 42.

Sorry that you had a rough week. Hope things get better soon.

- Joyce

January 16, 2009 at 11:14 PM  
Anonymous Michelle said...

I'm in sunny California, in the mountains, and my lilies are coming up. We're in the midst of a terrible drought...and it's in the seventies. Very scary!

Good luck with your shakeups...

January 17, 2009 at 3:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sending warm thoughts to you from Nashville, TN. Schools closed here on Friday cause a the frakkin cold. Yeah, we southerners are soft.

I'm sure everything will work out fine for you in regard to your "shakeups," but I'll add my best wishes and warm thoughts to those of your other readers.

I hope you enjoyed the bonfire.


January 18, 2009 at 10:23 AM  

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