Saturday, November 15, 2014

15 November, 2014 - Winter on the Homestead, or ... Living in a Deep Freeze

The cold weather hit like a striking snake!  Hard and painful!  Getting cold weather in NW MT is nothing new.  I remember a Halloween night it was bitterly cold but to have it hang on for days as this last one has is a bit unusual.  They keep forecasting warmer weather in a few days but then keep postponing it.  We'll just keep adding more wood to the fire I guess!  (And try to move up our scheduled departure date for going south!)

Susan made pork-n-beans.  She began with beans and real bacon bits.

Then made the sauce.

Put it all together.

And run it through the canner!  

We always test out the new creations before putting them back in storage.  If  something is wrong we need to know before she does another ten canner loads of it.  This is meatloaf that Susan canned.

When it came out of the oven she added the topping.

And opened a jar of the home made pork-n-beans.

Baked some rolls and made potato salad and we had a feast!  The recipes are all great!

This is about a day's supply of wood for heating the cabin.

We brought our SIL's motorcycle up from their cabin to store it in a shed for the winter.  Scott "rode" it up the hill and played on it for quite some time afterward.  (It's firmly strapped to the trailer.)

Our first real snowstorm of the year!

Susan of course got out her ice skates.

The day after!  It's about zero and everything outside is frozen.  I put the solar panels in their vertical position in preparation for winter and heavy snow.

Emily and Stephen, our newest grandchild's mom and dad.

Susan switched swings in the living room so Scott would have some variety.  We bought a wagon and a toy (sit-on kind) backhoe to take with us down south next month. He'll love playing with them!

One advantage of using the wood stove is it saves on propane for cooking.  This is breakfast being made and a cup of coffee being heated up.

I needed to patch my camouflage coat and decided to just use an iron-on patch.  I had to find the iron and get it hot.  We purchased this at a yard sale years ago.  It's designed to use hot coals to heat the iron but it works great just setting in on top of the wood stove.  The stove is really hot so I placed the iron on a trivet to keep it from overheating.

The rip in my coat sleeve. 

I cut one patch to go inside the cloth exterior.

Then I ironed it to set the glue.  I then cut another patch to go over the rip and ironed it on as well.

All finished!  And I didn't even scorch it! (Much!)

We have been known to buy frozen vegetables if they're on sale real cheap then dehydrate them for storage and use later.  We got a super deal on mixed vegetable awhile back so Susan dehydrated them.  Our system is simple.  We scatter them on plastic screens and put them in various places near the ceiling to dry.   This is one rack holding one pound of the vegetables.

We had four pounds and dehydrated them all.  The space savings are great.  All four pounds are now stored in this quart jar.  We can store it anywhere out of the sun too since there's no danger of it freezing.  Plus it took no electricity or other extra energy source to dry it nor does it take any extra energy source to preserve it.

We stopped in Kalispell to do some shopping and see some of the kids.  This is our oldest son.  I posted a photo of his elk antlers the night he got it but the photo was dark and grainy.  This one is a bit better. It was his first bow kill!  It's going to be hard to top in the coming years!

1 comment:

  1. Wow! You folks have been busy. The food sure looks great too.