The Cold and Hobbits…


It’s been bitter cold here the last week or so.  Maybe not subzero arctic miserable, but still, with a good stiff wind, temps down in the low teens and single digits can be hard on a person.  Maggie has been the trooper of the bunch, she always has dealt with the cold with hardly a thought.  Her grandparents gave us several packages of those toasty toes warmers and she slaps a pair of those on her feet, pulls up her muck boots, wraps up in a few layers, a hoodie and her barn coat with a scarf and some thick gloves and off she goes.  Me?  I just dread being outside too long at the moment.  With this lingering cough and a bout of walking pneumonia, that bitter wind just sucks the breath from me and makes me weak.  Jessy is somewhere in between!  She can tolerate the cold for awhile, but then she gets a little frustrated and cold and heads back in.  Winter is tough on a homestead.  Especially with animals that are waiting for your care and need consistent attention to make it through the cold as well.


Our biggest issue really is water.  I’ve been giving it a lot of thought.  I so wish we had our internet issues fixed because I am sure this is a problem that many people face and there are bound to be lots of ideas and wisdom to share on the subject.  So far, we’ve found that it’s better to offer a little amount of water in the morning and evening, in a shallow bowl, where the animals drink until they leave a wee bit left.  We were lugging out gallons and gallons, but then they would drink some and the rest would freeze and we’d have to dump it out of the bowl or bucket and start over.  Just seems to make sense to haul less and still keep everyone happy.  The sheep seems to like eating snow.  I thought it was because they were thirsty, but yet, even with adequate water, they still like to lick the snow and stand there contemplating this patch and that patch.  I guess it’s because they miss grazing.  Or they are young and just find it fun.  I know they are doing fine, all are fat and sassy and it’s a hoot to see them in the warm morning sunshine frolicking and running about with their silly sheep antics.  It doesn’t last long, but at least a time or two a day, they kick up their heels and just dash around with a bit of play.  It’s funny to watch.  Most of my flock is still pretty young, Angus, Molly and Fergus are going to be two this early summer!


I’ve noticed that the house gets very cold around 7 pm or so, and will stay so until about midnight.  And then, curiously, it reaches a point of chill, and then stabilizes and begins to warm up again.   I think it’s when the house heaters and such finally get a good grasp on the cold and get the place warmed up nicely.  To work with this natural event, I find that we seek our beds or the couch with a big blanket to read or play games, watch a DVD or even nap.  And then later in the evening, we get up and do things in the warmer house.  It’s actually fine, it seems to work nicely with the body’s rhythms.  I find that I wake much more refreshed in the late evening, all warm and cuddly, a bit of reading done and then I can go and craft in the studio or work on the computer.  We’ll stay up a few hours, then by 2 or so, back to bed for second sleep.  I feel like a hobbit!  There must be something to it…


The girls and I went to see the new movie, the Hobbit, yesterday, on Friday evening.  I hate to admit, but it’s the first movie I’ve seen in a theater in years!  I can’t even remember the last time I saw a movie like that, I think it was Seabiscuit…  which, if I’m not mistaken, was out oh, five or six years ago at least!!!  But we are all big Tolkien fans, and love the Lord of the Rings movies, so it only seemed fitting to go together and see it on the big screen!  We wanted to go when it came out in December, but we were all so sick one way or another, it just made sense to wait a bit.  I don’t want to spoil it for you, but I loved it and I was also a little weirded out by the fact that it was not a full movie… or well, a full story, it’s just part one!!!  Agh!  So now I have to wait for months and months until the next part is available!  Darn.  But it was delightful to watch and I really enjoyed the movie date with my daughters.  I didn’t even complain about the $8 ticket price or the popcorn and drinks that cost us $18…  haha… shesh.  I figure when you go only once every five years, you should enjoy the complete experience!


The one thing, however, that I loved the best, was the lengthy bit in the beginning in Hobbiton.  And especially, Bilbo’s hobbit hole home.  All I could think was that it was so lovely and contented, and I just wanted my own hobbit hole like his!  So beautiful, all the colors and the lovely woodwork and crafts and just the look of the whole place, so wonderfully comfy and welcoming.  I think I must be a Hobbit-Wanna-Be!  And the gardens and flowers and country lanes, just beautiful.  If I had a wish, I’d love for the farm to take on a sort of feel of the Middle Earth Hobbit village.  How delightful that would be!  I loved his pantry and this mother’s dishes, and the lovely detail work on all the wood and iron in the place.  The warm glow of the fireplace and candles, big books and soft chairs…  oh yes, I would love to be hobbit!


When we were driving home, I mentioned this to the girls and they all agreed!  Yes, we would love to have a home like Bilbo’s and live the contented hobbit life!  I guess that we are working towards a sort of hobbit life, with our lovely homestead and the feeling of being homebodies.  We love it here!  Why leave?  Even with the cold, I will admit, it’s pretty to see the place covered in a light layer of snow, and see the little trails through the snow by the kitties and the hoofstock.  Even seeing the roosters walking about and enjoying the weather, it’s fun.  The hens rarely leave the warm barns right now, they would rather stay in and keep warm, scratch in the hay and straw and just snooze under the heat lamp.  See, there are places in the farm for all types of winter folk!


I think that once I get back on line here at the farm, I want to keep a look out for photos and such about the Hobbit homes and such.  Start a little design file of eye candy and see if we can’t pick out elements of the movie set in particular and recreate them for our own little decorative touches here at Windhaven.  Why not?  Surely the elaborate iron work is not within our budgets, but you know, I’ve seen some delightful painting that looks just like iron from a bit of a distance.  We can “fake” it until we can make it on a few things here and there and that will be fun.  This year is going to be the year of really making the place ours and adding some whimsey and delightful little bits here and there.  I think a hobbit theme sounds like fun!  It’s really a sort of agrarian, old country, English feel and we like that.  A touch of medieval, a bit of peasant simplicity.  Our new decorating palette!


Well, I know that spring is just around the corner.  January will pass quickly enough, and then we’ll start to get little trickles of good weather, little glimpses of the season to come.  We’ll spend the time getting our full fill of naps and crafts and get the house in order, ready for when we want to spend the entire day outside!  I really want to create some sort of little shaded, screened outside office for us all.  Wouldn’t that be delightful?  Doesn’t have to be too big, just enough room for a little table and chair and a laptop or two.  Maybe when we redo the screen porch, we can build in a little work area, that would be perfect!  Can’t wait for that spring to come…  no doubt about it!


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About Mobymom

the banjo player for Deepwater Bluegrass, and the editor of as well as the main graphic designer of the Westvon Publishing empire. She is a renaissance woman of many talents and has two lovely daughters and a rehab mobile home homestead to raise.

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