Sunday, December 31, 2017

Braving The Cold

The thermometer on the back deck was hovering right at the 18-degree mark. The pasture and back yard were covered with a heavy frost that glistened brightly in the sun.  It is a gorgeous sight but Brrrrrrrrr!, I hate the thought of going outside.

The pig and goats were all still in the barn.  The two Pyrenees were out playing.  They never seem to mind the cold.  The ducks were already in the creek, splashing about in the water.  A few chickens had ventured out into the cold morning air, but only a few.  The rest were still tucked away inside the coop.  It seemed like a perfect morning for a second cup of piping-hot herbal tea.  But, some things do not wait for the temperature to rise, or the sun to shine.  Animals have to be fed every day and farm chores are always needing to be done.   Whether it is in the teens or in the eighties, a farmer’s work is never-ending.

Today, even after waiting until 10:00 a.m., the temperature didn’t rise very much at all.  Still in the mid-twenties, with a stout wind howling, we needed to finish the decking part of the garage addition that we started yesterday.  It was a day to take heed to the advice of layering.  I pulled on a long sleeved, heavy shirt, an over-sized heavy sweater, wool socks and pants.  I added a scarf, gloves, a hat and a coat.  I looked like Randy from “A Christmas Story” all bundled up for his walk to school in the snow.  And I felt like yelling, “I can’t put my arms down.” 

Regardless of the thermometer, the cold weather attire or any other distractions, we had work to do.   Not to brag, but I am a whiz with a chop saw and I have amazing spatial recognition skills.  Okay, maybe I’m bragging a little.  *haha*  Working with 12-foot long deck boards, it was my job to carry all of the boards from the trailer to the framed addition and place them so that they lined up with the floor joists. 

My Trusty Pink Tape Measure and Pencil

Since the new garage addition is 12 x 26, I had to make cuts for each row to stagger the ends of the boards.  One reason is simple aesthetics.  The second, more important, reason is because the ends are the least stable part of the boards.  Staggering will improve the structural integrity.   We have laid flooring in many of our other houses, so flooring is a skill we have mastered.

Braving the cold weather (so cold the air compressor didn’t even work), we knocked out the remainder of the decking in less than two hours (even with having to use screws on the majority of the remaining boards).   When we finished, it was still only 25-degrees.  Brrrrrrrr!   My fingers and toes were numb by the time we came inside again.   I had to thaw out in front of the fire.  But, the decking was finished!

New Addition To The Garage

Next comes the walls…hopefully we will have a break in the weather and it will warm up a bit…

To A Life Of Simplicity
Happy Homesteading!
~ Susan & Rick
Celtic Acres Farm

If you have a question or comment, you can leave it below, and I will do my best to respond.  Please keep your comments civil and clean.  I reserve the right to delete inappropriate comments. 

About the Author:
Susan along with her husband, Rick, are the owners of Celtic Acres Farm, an organic, self-sufficient, off-grid farm where they raise chickens, ducks, goats and a pig, rescue dogs and cats, grow their own heirloom, non-gmo produce, create handmade crafts and home d├ęcor items, and strive to live a self-sustaining lifestyle while attempting to carve out that little piece of paradise where they can live free, breathe free and commune with nature.
Celtic Acres Farms is committed to healthy animals, a greener planet, recycling-reusing-repurposing, while maintaining our rural heritage and sharing it with others. We believe that we must all lead the way to a more sustainable future while never forgetting the things of the past. 

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