So, it has been quite a Christmas. It started with us getting our tree and decorating it. I love this tree.
I also assembled a table of decorations. And Ryeleigh left them alone. She tried to unwrapped presents under the tree so they were kept hidden from her.
We went to my uncle’s and aunt’s house for Christmas Eve. This is customary for us and continuing the traditions of my grandparents. Here is their tree.
We missed last year due to the pandemic (except virtually) so this was especially nice for that reason. Ryeleigh came with us since we cannot leave her alone at home, and it was too cold out to leave her in the truck. She was fairly well behaved. She tired herself out by the time presents were unwrapped.
She enjoyed hanging with my mom and step-dad on the couch while they opened their gifts.
Then we had our traditional pudding. You can actually see the flames in this photo (most years it doesn’t show in the photo). Our Christmas dinner and dessert are based on practices of my maternal grandfather’s family, and I greatly enjoy them. And my aunt is an amazing cook so it is all so incredibly delicious.
Unfortunately the snow started as we headed back home. We got home around midnight.
And I had to work Christmas Day. Here is the view of our home as I am pulling out of the driveway in the morning.
I had worn an old favorite sweater/Christmas present. I love the vintage tag. It kept me warm as I slowly drove through the snow to work.
I was surprised how depressed I was working at Christmas. I missed seeing family on this day and leaving my husband alone. I tried to lift my spirits by partaking in the free Christmas meal offered. But it did not help, particularly in comparison to my dinner the night before.
It had started snowing at work later than at home. Here is a statue at work from 9 PM.
Tom had said it snowed all day and was 8 inches by 4:30. This is a view of our driveway’s security camera at 11:00 with Ryeleigh running around still.
And here is the same work statue this morning. But this did not tell the story. This is in a relatively protected area, and it was much deeper further outside.
I had to decide whether to try to drive home or not. I opted to have Tom come and get me with his 4WD truck rather than try with my front wheel drive car. I am glad I did. Here is a portion of our drive home.
And here is the snow plow clearing the intersection down from our house.
We got home, and I noticed our newspaper box holding a lot of snow.
I measured 12 inches on our backyard spool.
Then it was time to check on the animals and give them food and water. I had been doing quite a bit of baking before Christmas, and the recipe for Ripon Spice bread was a complete failure. But the chickens enjoyed it this morning.
And then it was time to do the chores. Here is the front of the barn with the anti-hawk string covered in snow.
Here is our front pasture. The barn animals, including the geese, were all staying inside. So there are no footprints anywhere.
Here are the snow covered cows, proving they are well insulated. Tom said it looked like they mostly stood in one spot. They have a shelter they can use but choose not to.
For some reason, the short goats decided to follow me when I looked at the cows. Probably they thought there might be food involved. But you can see how deep the snow is for them.
The animal chores done, I decided to put out bird seed in the front yard feeders. Here is the view of our home this morning as I did this.
Then I went out to the greenhouse to knock the heavy snow off the roof. En route I noticed our collapsed hot house. This has happened before so you would think that we would remember to remove the plastic before the snows but apparently not. So sad.
I was able to use a rake and get a lot of snow off the greenhouse. The roof is made from clear plastic panels so I was worried about their ability to handle the weight. Then I noticed the pots in the back of the garden are pretty well insulated with the snow. This may help with the extremely low temperatures we are about to experience.
I headed to the snowmobile shelter next to knock snow off that. This whole morning Ryeleigh was been running around in the snow and howling. She is chasing birds but likely other small critters as well. She was having so much fun.
The heavy snow is weighing down our trees’ branches. Many have broken off. One large one was on the snowmobile shelter, and two are on the trailer roof. But so far trees near us have not closed our road nor taken down our power lines. These issues have been happening really close by.
I failed to take a before photo, but this is after. You can see how drooped the tarp is from the snow but at least the weight is off now. Lots of snow on the machines though.
As I headed back to the house, I could see Steve running around and Tom shoveling the back steps. He had been clearing the snow off of the garage. Steve is not enjoying the snow and spending as much time as possible inside, which is highly unusual for him. I do not remember him disliking the previous snows, but the snow and branches dropping is freaking him out.
As I headed onto the back porch, I noticed our poor gargoyle is holding up a lot of snow.
So we had cancelled the planned Christmas celebration this morning with our family. It is heart breaking because the grandkids were going to come over. We didn’t have a Christmas really with them last year. We brought presents over before Christmas, and they opened a few. But that was the same day our cat Chloe died so is not a great memory. I really wanted to make great ones this year. I had planned for a nice breakfast with sticky buns, eggs, and bacon. The meat was thawed and the sticky buns made so Tom and I enjoyed a nice brunch together anyway. I also fried some sliced Christmas pudding. That was fun, and I found the token coin inside which means I should have good luck next year. I sure hope so!
Tom and I opened our presents which was nice. Then I spent a lot of the afternoon on the phone with Verizon trying to get my new phone to work. I missed quite a bit of the Seahawks game in these efforts and got done just in time for Jimmy Graham’s winning touchdown.
So we tried to make the most of this weekend. There were nice aspects but sucky ones too. Now the temperature is dropping.
So expecting there will continue to be lots of work to do here. (FYI this is the first photo with my fancy new phone.) I am planning a mincemeat omelette for dinner. Hopefully that will be a festive end to the weekend.