I wonder if it would be accurate to say that winter is always on our minds? In the winter, we are thinking about how to get through the winter. In the spring, we're so thankful that winter is over. Summer brings projects that must be completed before the cold weather hits, and fall consists of finishing all those said summer projects, and the mad dash to finish everything up before....you name it....winter comes again! So yes, I suppose I can say that winter is all consuming. Especially when you live in Alberta!
There is, however, much to love about winter. And that's how I try and get through the (never ending) season in good spirits, being thankful.
First of all, since the sun rises so late, and sets so early, you don't have to be up at the butt crack of dawn to see the beauty that happens twice a day. When I really think about it, it's quite amazing.... that we would be privileged to witness such an event. Twice! Every. Single. Day.
Since the days are so short, and the nights are so long, it's a really great time to work on inside projects. Our girls have learned to enjoy doing a bit of embroidery.
Weather it be tea towel or pillow cases, it's always fun to bring out a new project.
I also really enjoy quilting. This is my winter project, to finish up this vintage quilt I bought. I'm hoping it'll be finished in time for spring - I think it'll look awfully sweet on my bed!
And sledding. Because really, who doesn't love some sledding?? Either by hill.....
....or by horse. And you're never too old to sled!
Fires. Again, who doesn't love a great fire?! If it's outside....
....or inside. There's something just so comforting and relaxing to me, to sit by a fire. I love it!
And naturally, another winter sport we enjoy is skating. Since moving out to our ranch, every year, Art has made a big skating rink for the girls, their friends, and our neighbors to enjoy. This year, we moved it to a more protected spot, closer to the house, and we hung these sweet lights around the rink so they could easily skate in the door (due to the aforementioned long nights!), and the light makes it look almost magical!
I suppose the last thing on the mind is caring for livestock throughout the winter. Due to the ridiculous amount of time, energy and planning that is done throughout the year, I feel very fortunate that our feeding routine is very, very easy. Of course, we check on our animals every day, usually a couple of times a day - especially when the temperature really drops. However, since we bale graze our cattle, we are moving electric fence every 4 days to allow them to access new bales. It's an inexpensive, easy way to manage livestock through the winter.
The chickens are especially happy this year with a new chicken house. We built this house in the spring, and have increased our flock to about 60 hens, and next year I think we'll bump it up to 80 layers. With their new, roomy digs, the chickens are happy, happy, happy!
So many, many things to be thankful for during the long season of winter!