Tuesday, November 22, 2011

First Hard Frost

We woke up this morning to a silvery frost over everything. Actually, it didn't come as a surprise because it was -4c when we went to bed and the big pile of firewood in our driveway was starting to sparkle. It's -7c now. The whole rest of the country seems to be under a deep freeze with Alberta recording temps in the low -30's Brrr! That's cold for November. Just because they're used to it (we lived there for years) doesn't mean they have to like it. That's cold! Even Vancouver Island where it rarely snows has a nice white blanket. So all things considered we're doing good. It's been 15 degrees a couple of days over the weekend and sunny, but we know that winter is inevitable. So Steve winterized the motorhome last night, draining the water systems and putting RV anti-freeze in the plumbing and regular anti-freeze in the engine. It should be ready to move to Sackville this week, just waiting on a moving permit.

We've been very busy finishing stocking up with firewood. A massive pile of cut and split logs is on the driveway (about 2 cords) with the exception of the oak we cut, we need a log splitter for those massive rounds. Once it's all cut we're loading it into the garage and into the basement to help get it nice and dry. It's really important that the moisture has somewhere to go and we have 2 extractor fans in the basement, one right by the woodpile. The basement currently contains almost a cord of very very dry wood and another half cord that's drying. So we should be good now for the winter with a total of about 6 cords of hardwood. All in all with scrounging, cutting ourselves, donations and $350 cash paid out, we've got our winter supply. And with any luck there will be some left over to go towards next year. We couldn't have done it without our friends too, you guys are terrific!

It's 64 degrees in the house right now, or 17 celcius, so I lit a fire to take off the chill. We're still getting acclimatized to the damp cold here and so keeping the hose a bit warmer than we usually would. Outside it's sunny and there's a nice wintery blue sky. It's -7c (19f) so the kids dressed up warmly when they headed out for the bus today. The low pressure system we've been watching over the last few days has moved up the Atlantic seaboard and is now lying to the southwest of Nova Scotia so we have a snowfall warning that we could get upto a foot (30cm) of snow tonight. As soon as I see the clouds coming I'm pulling that trailer of wood inside! Hopefully I can get the other pile moved or tarped as well. It's no fun to have to try and dry wet wood before you can stack it. And if it gets snowed on and then melts it's going to wet the outside of every log. Not a disaster on seasoned wood, but it's less efficient to burn. What we want are logs with check marks (small cracks) on the ends indicating that it's dry.

Tonight I'm teaching a class at church for the women about emerency preparedness. We're going to discuss a 72 hour kit, fuel storage, water storage and we're having a basic first aid class too. As important as it is to learn these things...I'm just glad for a chance to hang out and get to know them better. Guess that means I should take some snacks too...maybe cookies and hot apple cider? I'll think about it.

So what's in your 72 hour kit? Can you carry it in a backpack or is it in totes? Ours is partly in the motorhome and we're working on backpacks for everyone too. We have a lot of camping gear and use it fairly regularly during the warmer weather, but now that we live where it gets colder int he winter I think we should reassess the thermal ratings of our sleeping bags. Another thing to add to the 'to do' list. Also have to stock up on fuel again too for our camping stove. It's never ending isn't it?

Well I've got to go print up supply lists and other emergency info stuff for tonight. Hope you're all keeping warm. And a big cold hug to those readers who live where it's warm!

Elizabeth

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