Thursday, November 29, 2007


In contrast to yesterday, this morning dawned through a grey ice fog. The trees are all beautifully flocked with hoar frost. Outside it is bleak, but at the same time beautiful.

Tucker has begun to make his presence felt in the form of scooping up small items and carrying them away. I spent several minutes today looking for a missing slipper, only to find it on our bed. One of my work gloves found its way there too.

Molly came out and about with us this afternoon. She's not so much impressed with the snow and cold; she had reluctantly given up her night time excursions.
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Wednesday, November 28, 2007


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Oh What a Beautiful Morning...

A glorious sunrise this morning! I headed out to work as the sun was coming up, and a little later on, Mike headed out to Nevada.

Tucker will be accompanying Mike in the New the meantime, he's becoming familiar with how things are done "on the farm". His playful side is beginning to emerge: he's begun gathering up all Molly's toys, and almost died of fright when he sunk his teeth into the squeaky toy we bought him on the weekend!

It's supposed to be darned cold here on Friday...note to self, use extra heater in the wellhouse Thursday night. When the temperature drops below -27 we've had a problem with the incoming waterline from well to the wellhouse freezing. The solution lies in pointing a ceramic heater slightly downward into the hole the pipe emerges from.

Off to do glamourous things like laundry and dishes. Back in a day or two.
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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Looking Back...

Tucker and his siblings arrived at Turtle Gardens on February 28 soaked, frosted, terrified, traumatized and unsocialized. That's him top left. They looked like little possums!
Before he was Fraggle, he was Raven...and very, very shaggy.

Here he was at the height of his hippie phase (on the right) before Yvette shaved him!

Tucker is becoming braver each day, and each day his tail rides a little higher in the air. Today it even wagged a few times. He is finding his place in the doggy hierarchy of the house, and isn't hiding every time we walk by. This afternoon while we were out feeding Buck and Rupert we dropped the leash and let him mingle with the others...he almost did a runner, but thought better of it, and bounded back up the stairs and inside with the others when we came in.

A few inches of new snow overnight. Mike plowed the drive and around the house this morning.
When I left for work this morning the highways had compacted snow, when I came home, they were slushy and sloppy.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Happy 27th Birthday to the Lovely Jen!

A day early, but not in Korea! Jen is celebrating her 27th birthday in Mokpo, South Korea...where she will be until late April. Lee took this pic in July when they were up during her summer vacation. We love you and miss you, and your birthday card should be there any time soon (oops...slight miscommunication about who was mailing it)!

Settling In

Tucker is settling in. He likes to sit on laps, and lounge on the bed, but he lacks confidence to approach, and tries to disappear when followed. Once contact is made, he's absolutely fine. He needed a quick bath this afternoon - I think the trauma of relocation, and not drinking well for a day has left him a bit constipated, and we had a small rear end problem to clean up. He was good as gold in the bath.

Still damp...hanging out with the big guys!

The weather forecast is promising snow, but it hasn't yet arrived. The woodstove is lit, the tea is on, and all is well on Inman Road.

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Sunday, November 25, 2007

Afternoon Chores

It has warmed up a lot today, and was very comfortable for puttering outside. Mike fixed the wind damage to the greenhouse, and then took the tractor down the field to do some fence fixing. The dogs and I walked down to meet him. Tucker was desperate to keep up with the big guys, but he's confined to a leash, so he had to stay with me. Finally poop scooping was on the agenda. I tackled Rupert's place, and Mike used the tractor to scrape up frozen Buck deposits from where he hangs out to await the next flake of hay that's due to come sailing over the fence.

We Welcome Tucker to our Family!

We heard around 5:30 p.m. Friday that our new little rescue dog would soon be on his way. Stan from Turtle Gardens Animal Rescue was leaving from Topley soon, and our little guy would be the first dog dropped off en route to their new homes. We arranged that Stan would call us from Williams Lake, and that we'd meet him in 100 Mile to expedite the long journey south. We stayed up until we couldn't stay awake any longer, looking at the phone every few minutes, willing it to ring. We eventually climbed into bed, and at 1:30 a.m. we got the call. We left home at 2 a.m. and drove along deserted roads into 100 Mile (it felt quite clandestine!). We had arranged to meet in the Save On Foods parking lot, and parked so that we could see vehicles coming southbound down the hill. The first set of headlights appeared...and it was a van - but not the right one. After another couple of vehicles went by, the TG van arrived, and under a full moon slightly dimmed by a hazy layer of thin cloud, in the bitter cold, we met our new little dog. He was in a little crate, cowering at the back of it. Stan gave us some excellent information and advice, we did the necessary paperwork, and after wishing Stan and the other dogs a safe journey, we loaded the crate into the pickup and were on our way home.

We arrived home just before three, and brought the crate inside. The big dogs sleepily greeted us and were quite curious about the contents of the crate. Rather than drag him out, we took the top off, and saw Tucker (formerly Fragglerock) properly for the first time. He was terrified, and had vomitted on his journey. The dogs introduced themselves, and Molly the cat climbed straight into his crate with him. We took his sweater off, gave him some clean bedding, offered him a drink of water (which he declined) and tucked him back into his crate for the remainder of the night. We brought the crate into the bedroom with us and climbed into bed around 3:30.

Tucker is a poodle sheltie cross. He and his two brothers and one sister were rescued from a hellish situation when they were around three months old. He is now about a year old. (I will ask Yvette permission to copy some of his earlier photos from her blog). He is the last of the four to find ahome, and is a shy, timid little fellow. Yesterday he cowered in corners and behind furniture. We took him to Kamloops with us yesterday(in his crate), and he spent the night sleeping on our bed. Today he is being a little braver, and has been lying close by while I write this post.

He has his leash attached at all times for now, until he's settled and bonded with us. Once he's well established with the home routine, Mike will be taking him on his longhaul travels.

Welcome home, little one!

Yvette, Dave and Stan at Turtle Gardens do wonderful work for some of the most neglected and abused dogs in the province. Please consider supporting them in what they do.

Friday, November 23, 2007


It's a full moon tonight. Taken this afternoon at 4:30.

Buck and Rupert each got a bran mash flavoured with molasses for dinner to warm their innards (and to disguise their dewormer). We haven't yet heard when Tucker is going to arrive.
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Thursday, November 22, 2007

Almost balmy...

A mere -17 this morning, warmer than I'd predicted. We're plugging in the block heater on my car overnight now.

We finished stacking the firewood this afternoon and then did some errands - a trip to the transfer station, donated our empties to the local charitable dropbox, and into town to pick up dog food, which I forgot to pick up on the way home from work.

Other than that, not much to report from Inman Road.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


Minus 19.5 this morning, folks! And it's -14.5 out now, so I expect and even colder start to the day tomorrow. We've had beautiful blue skies and sunshine, and have been outside enjoying the glorious weather.

Yesterday afternoon we tackled the windfalls that came down beside and across the fence on the roadside. A neighbour came by with a chainsaw and an offer of help, which we gladly accepted, and within an hour and a half, Mike & Allan had limbed and bucked up several large trees. They tossed the branches across the fence, which I burned - mostly beetle-killed pine, so I had quite an inferno going. Later Mike and I tossed all the logs over the fence (good thing we did - Mike came across a man and woman standing beside the fence this morning, ready to fill their pickup with the fruits of our labour! - Geez, people, cut your own wood...a mile up the road there's enough logging slash to heat a home till the end of time).

Today while I was at work Mike split & hauled all the wood, and we made a good dent into stacking it (sorry Mom & Dad, it's being stored on your RV deck!).

Our family is soon to grow by one! We are adopting a young small dog from an animal rescue. I believe he is a poodle/sheltie cross, is charcoal grey with a white chest, is so ugly he's cute, and is currently named Fraggle. He is going to be Mike's trucking buddy, and will be renamed Tucker. Tucker the trucker. Has a nice ring to it, doesn't it?!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Change of Routine Required...

The morning routine at our house is...reach for eyeglasses (otherwise blindness ensues), get out of bed. Stumble to bathroom, then pause in kitchen to fill kettle and turn on. Head to door. Open said door, and let Lucy out. Gillis will be directly behind Lucy. Next, holler for Jasper, who is still lounging on the bed and doesn't want to go out. Put on warm jacket, gloves and boots, and throw hay over the fence to Buck and Rupert. Head back inside with all dogs. Make tea, feed dogs. Dogs then go back outside. If it's a workday, I get ready for work, and they stay out until just as I'm leaving...if not, they can come back in whenever is convenient, or whenever Gillis barks annoyingly to come back in.

Now this routine works just fine most of the time. The problem that has arisen is Gillis. Gillis adores cold weather, and loves snow the best. And when it's a cold, fine morning, he likes to go exploring. Unless he's within several feet of you, however, due to his ripe old age he's pretty much deaf as a post. And this morning, he was blythely off galavanting in the woods, and I was all dressed for work, uselessly calling and calling him. Work shoes were exchanged for boots, and I headed out to find him, but he was way out of earshot, and I could see him heading deeper and deeper into the forest.

I had to leave for work. Luckily Mike was still home, though ready to leave too, and he retrieved G and saved him from spending the morning outside at -16 degrees. Mike's not always here though, so things need to change a little over the winter months, if I'm not to be trekking through the forest every morning.

The second doggy outing of the morning is going to have to be "on leash" for the G-ster, otherwise he's going to be spending some long, lonely mornings outside.
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Sunday, November 18, 2007

Winter Arrived Yesterday...

Around 3 pm the snow started. We had heavy flurries on and off through the evening, with a total accumulation of maybe 5 cm. Mike arrived home around 9:30 in a snowstorm, and by 10:15 we were enjoying ourselves at the dance. I brought my very tired husband home around half past midnight, and he slept till the coffee was on at 8 a.m. this morning.

A chilly -13.7 when I got up this morning, with an overnight low of -14.3 degrees.

Sadly there was a fatal accident west on Hwy 24 just before noon today...people need to take note of the winter driving conditions. The roads weren't in very good shape when I headed into town...I was taking our duvet to the laundromat, and had to turn around due to the accident and go the Horse Lake route.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Something New...

Today I met a blogging friend, and she introduced me to soapmaking (and then treated me to tea and delicious oat bars)! I enjoyed myself thoroughly, and I think I'll start making my own soap in the near future. Thanks for a very enjoyable afternoon, CS!

On my way home I picked up some flatted oats for Buck at the feed store, and this evening I'm catching up on laundry. The dogs are restless and particularly "buggy" tonight. Mike will be back sometime late tomorrow from places far away and not particularly exotic.

On the weekend agenda: not waking up to an alarm clock. Tomorrow evening is the dance at the Lone Butte hall...a fundraiser to replace the fence of the Lone Butte cemetary. The functions at the hall are always fun, and it's nice to catch up with "the locals."

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

You know you're in a small rural town...

...when you leave the hospital at 7:30 p.m., and four deer are walking along the sidewalk.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

The Aftermath

The biggest windstorm we've ever experienced blew through here, starting late Sunday night and winding down around 4 pm yesterday. There are trees down everywhere, including our property. Here's a sampling. The power was only out here from about 10 a.m. till 6 p.m.; we were lucky, our friends only a few miles away lost their power before dawn yesterday and are still without. It was an incredibly wild day. I found out that we're not as prepared as we possibly could have been for being without electricity. Water for the horse & donkey could have been a problem had we remained without power...and do you think I could find a flashlight that worked? Of course not. Will remedy these issues. If there had been snow on the ground, it would have been easy to just shovel snow into their water tub, which is heated. There wasn't and fortunately I'd filled their tub with the hose just before the power went out. Luckily we have a gas stove, so stovetop use is easy. I would've plugged the fridge into the generator if we'd been powerless any longer, but didn't need to do that.

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Sunday, November 11, 2007


This morning dawned with the promise of clear and blue, but soon the sky clouded completely and it's been a grey day with a biting wind. Everything froze hard overnight, and it's hovered around zero all day. After a morning walkabout and a few outdoor chores, it's been a day for indoor chores. The dogs think it's better indoors too. The woodstove is going, and I have a good book to read. All is well.

Saturday, November 10, 2007


It's been quite a productive day. First a trip to the 100 Mile Arts Council craft fair in town. There are plenty of talented people around. Spent an hour poking around there, followed by a latte at the Chartreuse Moose. After that home, and made leek & potato soup. Next, poop scooping in Rupert's pen and the pasture. Following that, I emptied out all the petunia pots (I should have done that 6 weeks ago) and stored them in the greenhouse. Next, a walk to the end of the field to stoke up the last remnants of the last fire of the year. Then I gathered up some firewood that Mike had cut a couple of weeks ago, and now I proclaim it to be time for a big steaming mug of tea. It's a sunny, blustery afternoon. No snow at all here.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Snow, please...and freeze, while you're at it.

This hovering just above zero dampness is downright...coastal. It's damp and bone chilling, and just unpleasant. I can normally wander outside to feed the boys in the morning in my trademark nightgown, boots and plaid quilted workshirt quite comfortably even in the minus 20's - when the humidity is low. This morning I was freezing and it wasn't even literally freezing out. And so, Mr. Weatherman...I would like things to cool down just a little, and let's swap the wet stuff for the white stuff while you're at it. Mud season ought to be over by now...I want to exchange the wellies for the snow boots. It's time!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Sunday Morning

After a couple of hours of mundane houseworky chores, dogs, cat and I puttered around outside for a bit. I pulled out the sweet peas, cleaned up the slimy rhubarb leaves, and mulched the strawberries with some old hay.

We found a couple of anemones that didn't realize it's not June anymore!

We went for a walk through the woods, and Jasper found a huge old bone, probably some poor old free range cow from before our time here.

Buck and Rupert are enjoying three feeds of hay per day now. We started supplementing with hay at the beginning of October, they still go down to the back fence to forage a little, but everything is pretty much brown and done for the year.

Snow Chard!

This chard is hardy stuff! Haven't harvested any for a long while, but today I picked all the tender young leaves I could find, and will have them with dinner. It tastes completely different after it's had been exposed to hard frosts, almost nutlike.
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Another Sunrise

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Sunrise A Few Days Ago

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Friday, November 02, 2007

Tolkeinian Imagery

For those who've seen the Return of the King, I would best describe our property today as looking like the aftermath of the battle at Minas Tirith, minus the dead Orks strewn around. We are enshrouded with wafting smoke, and small fires dot the landscape in the twilight, creating a strange, quiet, eerie effect.

Anyway, the bulk of the burning is done, and all that remain are some smouldering piles that need to be raked up in the morning. (with the excavator)

We've had intermittent light snow today, cold and cloudy, the temperature hovering a few degrees below freezing. There's a light layer of snow in the areas that aren't getting any direct sunlight now, and I believe that it's time for the annual accumulation to begin.

The heated water tub for Buck and Rupert has come out of hibernation and is back in use. This is a godsend in the winter, otherwise we'd be breaking ice several times a day. We keep the hose that attaches to the hydrant in the pumphouse to keep it from freezing, only bringing it out when it's time to fill the water tub.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Burning on a grand scale

Cliff was here with his excavator this afternoon and made short work of the two easternmost slash piles. He did lots of surrounding clean up too, and it's looking good at the end of the "field." The glowing embers of the two huge fires look quite lovely from the road tonight. Tomorrow he will do the remaining five piles and that'll bring "burning season 2007" to a close. Cliff stirred up the ashes from my first fire of almost two weeks ago, and it sprung right back to life and burned some more.

Aparently, when I was very small, my parents spent more than they could probably afford, and bought me doll sized replica of a Silver Cross pram, (one of those English nanny baby buggies). Instead of taking my dolls for walks in it, I'd pile it high with all my toys and play "bonfire". What can I say? I've had a life long fascination with burning stuff! Not a very green hobby.

In other news, our favourite owner/operator's next destinations are Arkansas and Georgia!

Something quite lovely