are you getting ready for winter?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by vegascowgirl, Aug 24, 2005.

  1. vegascowgirl

    vegascowgirl Try Me

    Sep 19, 2004
    somewhere, and No where
    O.K. this even sounds crazy for me to ask at this time when it's 90+ degrees outside. However, I was just wondering if anyone is starting to get ready for the winter months (if youhave to worry about winter that is)? what are you doing or what do you plan on doing to get ready for the colder season?
  2. Carol K

    Carol K Well-Known Member

    May 10, 2002
    Western NY
    We just had 2 semi loads of wood delivered. So are cutting that, oh my it's a lot of wood! We also bought a splitter this year (the one that Cabin recomended, thanks Cabin!) we don't split much as we have an outdoor furnace, but it sure is nice to have it to use when needed.
    I'm also trying to find hay and get that here, I'm trying to go to round bales more because of the ease, but without a tractor (great huh!) I have to make sure they are placed where I need them before our seasonal 180" of snow comes. I'm going to try and fence them off in a row with electric and just flip the bale feeder every time I need a new bale-well it sounds feasible, LOL.
    I have 2 pigs booked in for Sept to be butchered, so I'm all set-I think! Oh I may have to top up the propane tank, may need a mortgage for that one!

    Carol K

  3. Irish Pixie

    Irish Pixie Well-Known Member

    May 14, 2002
    We've got our firewood chunked and ready to split (we need about 7-8 cords to get through the winter), the barn is full of hay, I'm freezing veggies from the garden, and the tomatoes will be ready to can soon. I believe I'll harvest potatoes today, I've got green beans to freeze that I harvested this morning.

    I still need to can some peaches, and do my fall "stock up" on groceries (I only go to the store every 2-3 months, except for dairy and fresh fruit), and clean out the root cellar- for the potatoes. I need to buy apples when they're ready too.

    Almost there....

  4. Ed in S. AL

    Ed in S. AL Well-Known Member

    Jun 4, 2002
    At the end of the road.
    I kinda got a feeling winter is coming early this year. For one this jap grass in the yard always stops growing when it's fixing to turn off cool. It has just about stopped growing. Two, the blackbirds never show up until the end of fall. They are here this week. Squirrels are mighty furry right now as well.
  5. katlupe

    katlupe Off-The-Grid Homesteader Supporter

    Nov 15, 2004
    Upstate NY
    Our Robin family was raising their babies in a nest we were watching and the other morning I went out and they were all gone. They used to hang around my garden when I was out there working, and they haven't shown up. They've left.

    We are getting our chainsaw serviced next week, and getting a couple extra chains for the winter. I have been gathering kindling and cookstove wood from the forest.

    Getting the heating stove in shape by putting in a new chimney. Speaking of chimneys, we are getting new ones for our kerosene lamps (each one has to have a extra and we have 14 total), as lighting is essential for us in the winter months. Can't stand those short days!

    Stocking up on all kinds of food and supplies. Filling the pantry shelves, the root cellar and getting my bulk orders in too.

    We are not ever snowed in, we just don't like to go anywhere if we can help it.

    Oh, I almost forgot, we are getting our barn roof finished so we can put hay in the loft. And the horses will be completely inside this winter.
  6. mtman

    mtman Well-Known Member

    Sep 2, 2004
    well we will be liveing on the farm the first of oct. there is no form of heat in it yet so i guess im not ready
  7. fordson major

    fordson major construction and Garden b Supporter

    Jul 12, 2003
    east ont canada
    our winter prep never ends! we hay all summer and cut dead trees along the fence rows when time permits. we go through a large pile of wood heating 2 houses and a kennel, we still have to install the water lines for the wood boiler ,hope to do that early sept.
  8. wormlady

    wormlady Well-Known Member Supporter

    Oct 8, 2004
    Almost have all the wood stacked. 17yoDS is still splitting wood for a year or so out (told him he can't leave home til it is all split).

    Everytime I'm in town (not so often anymore) I stock up on non-perishables; more to avoid paying future high gas prices than as a hedge against winter.

    We live in a heavily wooded area; good for free wood for heating, bad for gardening.

    We will probably get the cars winterized the end of Sept. about the time of the first snow flurries.
  9. Canucklehead

    Canucklehead Active Member

    Feb 18, 2005
    We are still in town but right now we are buying up all the cheap salmon we can get for canning and freezing fillets. We get super cheap veggies from the market (har har... store to some of you) DW works at ... those all go to the freezer or canner. Dehydrated a whole bunch of toms thank to a suggestion on this site. They smell great! We;ve already got all the fruit we need put up. Twice a year pork legs come real cheap here and I butcher up a whole bunch and freeze. Then I roast off the bones and make the best pea soup you've ever had. All of it goes to the freezer... easier than canning for me.

    Still, I can't wait to get out into the country an away from the high heating costs in our rental (electric). Plus I'll be able to have my own garden and save even more there. I'd like to go out and get a nice big deer this year... we'll see. I will can up a bunch of crab we fish for. Crab melts... very nice. In the country I'll have my own goats for the cheese. ;)

    I love this site.
  10. Jen H

    Jen H Well-Known Member

    Jun 16, 2004
    We've almost got our wood split and stacked (6 cords done, 2 to go). We still need to beef up the insulation in the pump house to make sure it doesn't freeze out there when we loose power. We still have to get more hay and straw.

    There's already a nip in the air in the morning and heavy dew at night...
  11. pcwerk

    pcwerk Well-Known Member Supporter

    Sep 1, 2003
    SE Minnesota
    Well I'm not ready for it but its a comin' ;-) Looks like I'm about to
    face the first real winter in my life. Minnesota no less! I don't even
    know where to start. I guess I better get some wood gathered up for
    fun and cozy nights, but we have a very good central gas heater. I
    need to get some kind of snow removal equipment ready, but I'm not
    sure whether to look for a used tractor and attachment, a lawn mower
    and attachment, or one of those walk behind snow blowers? Any advice
    would be greatly appreciated. [I just KNOW this snow removal business
    is going to be a PITA! I have already told my DW that she will be
    performing such operations half of the time!! This whole move is HER
    IDEA and I'm not going to break my back for her "to live out a dream"]

    On the other hand, it is going to be kind of an adventure and I'm kinda
    getting excited about it all (don't tell my DW). I do have a sinking feeling
    that the authorities will find one of us on the side of the road in a snowbank
    froze to death ;-) Bring it on!
  12. mulliganbush

    mulliganbush Well-Known Member

    Apr 2, 2005
    Our part of Tennessee doesn't commonly get much snow or cold weather, but we prepare for it as part of the cycle of the seasons from the first cutting of hay through the last gathering of pumpkins.

    We have a wood stove that can be used for cooking as well as heating of the main living area, so it's cutting and splitting wood time all the time. Here and on the family's farms, we have enough hay to see us through winter and we still have more cutting. We'll store extra, in case the winter is longer or harder than usual.

    I've hit all my canning and freezing goals this summer, but we still have the fall harvest, and though we've been butchering chickens and goats through the summer, the beef, pork, and venison are low.

    The house needs more weather-proofing, and the children's winter clothing is behind schedule.

    I guess we can say we're getting ready for winter, but we surely hope it doesn't come for a while.

  13. MissKitty

    MissKitty Mrs. no longer OldGrouch.

    Mar 15, 2005
    Winter hay is bought and in the barn...Plenty of firewood and topped off the propane tank for $1.29.9 a gal...(special deal)...Got the garden harvest canned and frozen...stocking up on staples...Need to find hubby some winter clothes...he has grown since last always shop at the thrift stores and yard sales...I am sure there is lots we haven't prepare for yet...always is...But I knnow that fuel for heating this winter is going to be HIGH...whether it be electric...propane ...oil...or natural gas...Glad I got my wood heater...can cook on it also...MissKitty
  14. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

    Jul 20, 2004
    We went yesterday and bulked our propane for the winter. Hubby is dredging out the ponds while they're at their lowest in preparation of Autumn rain. I've canned tomatoes and put squash and corn in the freezer and we checked the peanuts and sweet potatoes yesterday. They're ready to pull and dry so we'll be doing that next week. We're keeping an eye on the Kudzu. As soon as it starts blooming I can make Kudzu jelly.
  15. Dustybottoms

    Dustybottoms Member

    Aug 6, 2005
    We're basically preparing & stocking food and emergency supplies as it would not be unusual to have an ice or snow storm. Also, clothing is being knit or sewed if necessary. Blankets are being made too. Stocking up on fun things for the family to do when we are not going out for some time.
  16. Cabin Fever

    Cabin Fever Life NRA Member since 1976 Supporter

    May 10, 2002
    Between Crosslake and Emily Minnesota
    The firewood for this winter was cut and split two years ago. In about a month or two, we'll start cutting and splitting firewood for the 2007-2008 winter.

    Way to go Carol K. on your choice of hydraulic splitter!
  17. Alex

    Alex Well-Known Member

    Mar 20, 2003
    Vancouver, and Moberly Lake, BC, Canada
    Our 55 acre Oat nurse crop, with Alffalfa-Clover-Timothy first-year hay was seeded late -- too wet, and we have one big low spot where the oats didn't get seeded, and will not be cut for one-two weeks, so we need another week after that, with good drying conditions.

    First year Oats nurse with Hay, Aug 05

    Still last night the big stove was on, it got down to 46F above, and we needed a little heat. Our son visited from Hong Kong, where he lives and works, and sawed up a big fifty foot pine I skidded in two years ago, and we have about enough pine, spruce, and birch split, stacked and covered.

    Some of the poplars are just starting to turn, on the edge of the fields, and in one week we will harvest the potatoes we planted June 10, we are eating peas tonight, but they are ready to pick enough to can yet.

    Were ready, and can wait.

  18. nehimama

    nehimama An Ozark Engineer Supporter

    Jun 18, 2005
    Powhatan, AR
    Down here in SE Missouri, the winters are usually mild, but I have a "feeling" about the one coming up. Even during mild winters we can get a decent snowfall and even ice storms that'll sock us in for a week or more.

    So, yes, I've been getting ready, even though it's been 100+ around here for weeks. Sold off some livestock, and the hay in the barn will last the winter. Been getting wood cut & stacked for the woodstove. Been canning, freezing, and dehydrating everything possible from the garden - beans, tomatoes, squash, peppers, okra, melons, cucumbers, and beets.

    Just harvested the last of the nine-bunny litter today for the freezer & canner. Have another litter of seven which will be ready in another month, and another doe bred for September. A couple of extra roosters need to be harvested - mmm! Chicken & dumplings!

    Heading into town tomorrow to stock up on bread-making supplies and other non-perishables, and canning needs. If I find a good sale on bananas or other dehydratables, I'll get those, too. I only go to town every two weeks these days. If I've forgotten something, too bad. It waits 'til next trip.

    Already did a prebuy on propane (my backup heating source). Got no TV, but do listen to radio, have stacks of books laid in for reading, lots of woodshop projects lined up, sewing projects lined up, and some indoor painting and "redecorating" projects lined up for the winter months. I feel like I'm pretty well set!

    NeHi Mama
  19. Quint

    Quint Well-Known Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    I have a ton of stuff to do and I know it isn't going to get all done. Not enough hours in the day. This year unfortunately is going to find me less prepared than what I should be. I'll survive of course but it will be a bit more of a hassle than it should be. Next winter is going to be much better.
  20. cowboy joe

    cowboy joe Hired Hand

    Sep 13, 2003
    western New York
    Odd year, weather wise this season. It was in the low 50's this morning. I have to agree with the others that winter will set in early. Ready for way, not mentally anyway. Hard to think about knee deep snow and bitter winds when it's sunny & 85. I have about 5 cord split but want to put in a new woodstove before the weather sets in. Also trying to finish the solar room on the south side of the house in between all the canning and other chores.