It has been snowing off and on since the 17th and we have had a total of about 18-20 inches over that time. Today we have an accumulation of about a foot and it is getting grainy and icy. The chickens are in their coops with deep bedding and while they aren't laying much because the days are short, since the solstice I have been getting more eggs each day. This is a bit late as I needed them a couple weeks ago when I was in the thick of the holiday baking!
The girls on the garden are in the tractors which are more trouble - they need to be shoveled off before you open the tops to feed - but the hens are happy and chatty when I go out to do chores. Water has been the biggest hassle because it was cold enough last week to freeze in a couple hours. I had to dig some carrots the other day and brought up some "chick weed" from under the snow. I tossed it in their pens and it was GONE in a matter of no time!
The cow is resigned to the snow and the pigs - well - they seem unphased by the white stuff and continue to root, poop and frolic around. I shoveled a path to the cow and then a spur off to her trough since I detest getting snow down my boots. She is such a princess that she will only move around in the shoveled sections so needless to say she isn't getting much of a workout this week. I put down a pickup load of "ugly" bark (as opposed to beauty bark) that the local topsoil place sells for $12 a load. It is chippings from the road crew and the contractor the power company hires to keep the lines clear.
Michelle (Obama) and Cindy (McCain) spend most of the day curled up in their house in a deep bed of hay. I put a wheel barrow load in there about twice a week - mostly grass and alfafla mix - and they nibble on it and root around in it. I noticed last year that the added benefit of the hay is that it begins to compose as it draws a bit of moisture from the ground. If you put your hand into the pile it is about 75 degrees which explains why they spend so much time in bed during the day!
The snow is melting rapidly. Arnold got this shot of the snow on the "Cow Palace" and no sooner had he taken it when this happened......
No more snow curl! You will notice that Alexis is also outside the plowed area - she jumped about 10 feet when it happened.