As a little girl I was in love with the “Little House on the Prairie” series. I loved the books, I loved the TV show, and I loved to imagine what it would have been like to be Laura Ingalls growing up in pioneer times, wearing aprons over my dresses with petticoats, and bonnets, and playing with my corn husk doll under the big oak tree. One of my most vivid memories of the books were the detailed descriptions of all that the family would do to prepare for the long winter ahead. Pa would chop firewood for the stove that would keep them all warm. Pa smoked the meat he had hunted by building a fire at the base of an upright hollow tree and hung the meat up high inside to dry. I swear I could almost taste the smoky bacon when I read the words.
Obviously we don't need to go through the same level of preparation to get ready for winter around here since food is only a grocery trip away, and we can stay nice and warm by turning up the thermostat a few degrees when needed. But… based on the fact that in the last few years we were “snowed out” for Halloween twice, and these early snowfalls were measured in feet, not inches, I decided to be a little proactive this year and get things in order around here so that we too would be prepared for the winter ahead.
The kids and I used the wheelbarrows to move firewood from our backyard up to our back deck. Now it's right outside of the family room door where I can dash out and grab it without trudging through the snow.
We put the garden to bed for the winter too. I followed Kevin's instructions over at A Garden for the House and laid newspaper across the beds and then covered them in a generous blanket of shredded leaves and a handful of organic fertilizer (to help the leaves break down). I then watered the beds thoroughly. All ready for spring now.
I pulled out the last remnants of the annuals I had planted in the flower boxes, and trimmed the lavender plants to a nice compact shape so they can grow full again next year.
I dragged all of the lawn furniture, hoses, umbrellas and other equipment that we don't want to leave out in the snow over to the shed…. now it's waiting for my hubby to help me organize it and put it away so we aren't tripping over it all winter.
Sure, there are still lots of leaves to deal with, and the grass will likely need mowed at least one more time. But I now feel that if we were to get slammed with a storm next week, I don't have to think about all of the things I didn't get done.
You know…. ‘cuz being prepared makes me happy.