Tuesday, February 12

Farm Photo 2/12/08:
Frozen Water Everywhere & Not A Drop To Drink

Farm Boss Patchy Cat Knows How To Get His Point Across

So that crazy weather forecast I wrote about the other day? We got it. All of it. And then some. I don't think I've ever seen so much weather happen in one day. We had freezing rain, we had sleet, we had ice, we had ice pellets (which I'd never even heard of before moving to Missouri). We had huge bursts of echoing thunder while it was snowing huge, soppy flakes. And then we got several inches of what I can only figure was 'no accumulation.' Which then froze solid last night.

This morning Joe was watching through the living room window as Bear walked around on the no accumulation. "The ground is so hard Bear isn't making any footprints," he reported. Then we suited up and he walked out the front door ahead of me. "The ground is so hard I'm not making any footprints!"

Every single thing outside is totally encased in ice. We've gone into a sort of hibernation mode. I made a batch of Chocolate Babycakes With Mocha Buttercream. Joe calculated how many feet of oak door casing we'll need in the new building (a lot!). We bottled a bunch of beer.

During times like this, things around the farm are reduced to the bare minimum: making sure everybody has food, water, warmth - and that we say upright while we're slipping around out there on the ice.

It feels very isolated, but in a good way. It's doubtful anyone could get down here unless they hiked - and even that treacherous undertaking probably wouldn't be possible. Meanwhile we have no desire to see if we can get out.

We're thankful that the only damage so far appears to be several broken trees, and we're very glad we still have power, especially after hearing on the radio down at the barn (the only place we can get reception) that thousands of people around us are without it.

A big ice storm like this happens at least once a year here but I usually forget about it - or else I mentally block it out. The landscape actually looks really cool. I took all kinds of photos, but I think this picture of Patchy Cat standing in his water dish pretty much sums things up.

Want to see more?
Snow Photos & Snowstorms
Farm Landscape Photos
Patchy Cat Photos
Cat Photos

© 2008 FarmgirlFare.com, the award-winning blog where Joe is in the kitchen frying up a big cast iron skillet of wild venison in homemade lard for dinner, and we're really glad we cut all that firewood on Sunday.


  1. Poor patchy cat. Our birds are similarly distressed. I have one heated birdbath, which gets a good deal of business. I'll be adding another one since there's a fair amount of pushing and shoving.

    I enjoy your blog!

    Robin at Bumblebee

  2. We recieved some bad ice too. There is at least an inch of solid ice on everything!

    I am like you, in hibernation mode. I haven't left my house in two days. Just doing a lot of cooking and staying warm!

    Patchy cat needs a heated water dish!

  3. OOOH I just love hibernation mode. Sounds like a curl up with a good book, crackling woodstove, and hot choc day. AHHHHH, bliss indeed.

  4. Ice ice stay away don't even think about coming to Texas today! FG I am not a fan of cold so that poor Patchy Cat picture just makes me shiver! SOOO glad you kept power and have plenty - plenty is a good feeling isn't it?

  5. Hi, I have been enjoying dropping by now and then and as always your goodies look delicious and your farm critters are precious! blessings, Kathleen

  6. I think the last two winters have exceeded themselves in 'weird Missouri Weather'. We got the bad ice storm January 2007 and were without power for 13 days. I can never look at ice the same way again! ;-) We were mostly spared this time, just a crust of ice on everything. I did get some of those ice spikes for my shoes. They are on a rubber base that you slide over your shoes. They stay on pretty good, and have made all the difference in the world in getting chores done the last couple of days! Oh, and I think they call that 'Thunder Snow', when it thunders while snowing. Pretty wild, isn't it? Take care!

  7. Glad to hear you still have power, fortunately I do to. But several of the people I work with are out. The trees do look pretty with all the ice but then when the wind blows, the last thing I want is to hear them cracking! It is also so bazzar to hear that thunder. I saw lighting too. Most of the main in town roads are clear so is the interstate. But be careful in the parking lots and on the side streets. Also we are going to get more weather!! Snow!

  8. I'm the newbie to the blogging world and just started reading and posting my own entries, but you are my idol!!! what a wonderful and beautiful life!

  9. Despite all the inconvenience the storm brought, I'm sure your farm must look lovely with its ice covering. Here in Virginia we had a wimpy little storm and the ice is already dripping off the trees. Just as well that it wasn't worse. We get a lot of damage to power lines and ice storms are more frequent than snow storms. We're about an hour from Shenandoah National Park and the Skyline Drive and the woodsy views along the Drive are all full of downed trees and branches from ice storms of the past few years. It's really altered the whole look of Skyline Drive. Wish it would go back to being cold enough for us to get some of that "no accumulation" instead of ice.

    We also sometimes get thunder in the midst of what little snow we do get. Odd experience, isn't it?

    Your poor kitty. I hope you didn't leave him out long.

  10. Thundersnowing! That's a omen of some sort. I just know I take cover, much like you do, and do the minimum when wether is like that. Easy for me: I live in the city.

  11. Poor Patchy Cat--he's probably wishing for a hot tub! We got some yucky snow and freezing rain too, but nothing like yours! I have to keep putting out warm water for our two stray cats who come around (to go with their food.) I'd invite them in, but they won't have anything to do with us and just run if we open the door. Poor things. Such a contrast to my pampered pet cat, who spends most of the winter in hibernation mode, on the couch.

    Hibernation mode can be great. I wish I could do more of it, but have the daily commute to work. I'd much prefer the "commute" to the barn to check on the animals instead! But I have winter weekends to hibernate (ie. cook, pour over seed catalogs, daydream about the garden to come, etc). Interesting how the Internet makes "isolation" not quite so desolate. Thanks for sharing your life with us!

  12. Hi, there-- still LOVING your blog!

    Do you and your husband have a few pairs of what we in the Great White North call "Yak-Trax"? They are like little pairs of "chains" (as in, tire-chains) for your feet. These little wire-y beauties stretch out to cover the soles of your boots, snapping around your heel and toe, thus providing more traction, and keeping you from slipping on the ice.

    After the winter we've been having here in Canada, I wouldn't still be alive without them!

    Keep warm, now!

    xo CGF

  13. Patchy Cat is so cute! I just want to hug him.

  14. Hey susan,
    This is jennas from gather, stopping in to say HI,Love your homemade recipes,stories and photo's.

    I signed up to get a newsletter from you in my mailbox :))

  15. i love your blog. ive always found farm life appealing then read this story about a farm/b&b in vermont and started finding other stories and blogs like yours. i also love that you post recipes. im going to try a few and let you know how they go. thanks and keep up the good work! oh and good luck w/ the snow!

  16. We got that weather here in Alabama, too. Only not quite as bad as y'all got it.

    My chow dog walked up to his water bowl, with much purpose, made sure I was watching, and then knocked on it. I kid you not.

    Well, okay, he scratched at it. But only because he can't make a fist.

  17. I'm glad you guys don't fall victim to the "What? We can't get out? WE MUST GET OUT!" mentality that seems so prevalent in times of power outages, storms, etc.

    For some reason as soon as the power goes out or a road is closed everyone has something they *must* turn on or somewhere they *must* go. Even though five minutes ago they were sitting comfy on the couch reading a book.

    But oh no - now they need to run the air compressor and ride it into town.

    Stay warm!

  18. Goodness - my wishes and prayers are for warmth for you right now.
    When we were in our old farm house times like this (in SC it was never quite that bad for us)my husband used to hate how I would line all of the windows and doors with towels and blankets.

    But something about all of this icy coldness (knowing we weren't living in several months of it at a time) was kind of fun and adventurous.
    That's what it kind of sounds like for you - at least to this point - I hope it goes away as quickly as it came.

    Much warmth to you all!

  19. Hm, hibernation mode would make me happy right now. Ironic, but for me it sounds just like a spa, a cooking spa :). Yes, strangely, that makes sense for me.


December 2015 update: Hi! For some reason I can't figure out, Blogger hasn't been letting me leave comments on my own blog (!) for the last several months, so I've been unable to respond to your comments and questions. My apologies for any inconvenience! You're always welcome to email me: farmgirlfare AT gmail DOT com.

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