Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Okay, I know we southern-Vancouver-Islanders don't have much to complain about in the weather department...but it's cold!

Normal temperatures here through the winter are about 5 degrees Celsius (which translates into 40 degrees Fahrenheit), but last night it got down to -10. Brrr! So with the snow we've had, and now the cold, the weather is all anyone wants to talk about. Me included.

Kim was worried about the chickens, of course, so two days ago we put a little heater in the coop. This morning when we went to check on the flock the temperature was a couple of degrees below freezing, which seemed quite manageable for them - although all their water was frozen. We still haven't figured that one out -today Kim has put the heat mats from the greenhouse underneath the fountains, to see if that will make enough of a difference.

That wasn't all the water that was frozen this morning - once I had filled the coffee pot (thank goodness - I can't imagine how we would have dealt with an emergency if there hadn't been coffee) the water from the tap slowed to a dribble and then disappeared altogether.

Based on our horrible experience our first winter here, our first thought was frozen or cracked pipes in the pumphouse, but we have a heater there that's supposed to kick in when the temperature reaches freezing. We headed out, expecting to see water everywhere, but it was dry. The only problem seemed to be that the pressure tank was empty - so why wasn't it filling?

We cranked up the heater in case something to do with the pump itself was just too cold to work, and sure enough, in just a few minutes we had water again. Phew.

Funny how we take things for granted. Doing without water for all of 10 minutes has been enough to make toilets flushing and water flowing from the tap seem like the best thing ever.


Paula said...

Well I think that running (potable) water probably is the best thing ever, but we take it for granted so we don't realize it.

Our high for the day is supposed to be 32F, which is darn cold for these parts, and the wood stove is having a hard time keeping up. Most of the house is closed up to help out. Not sure I'm bathing today, running water or not!

Toni aka irishlas said...

Running potable water - man, oh, man. What a panic to be without. We keep some jugs just in case the power goes out - no power, no well pump. I wouldn't drink it at that point, but, you can flush the toilet and boil it for other things.

Chickens, I've learned, are pretty damn tough. We do not have heat in the coop (or light) and they did splenid last year. We do have to trade out the water fonts on really cold days because they do freeze. We keep equal amounts out in the coop and run and in the house so we always have a font available if needed. It may be a little bit of a pain, but, it's easier than trying to get electric for heat mats, etc. down there.

But, you have a lot more girls than I do so I can understand why you wouldn't want to be running back and forth with water fonts all day!

p.s. - I'll email you the info on the herb course I'm doing as soon as I get a few minutes.

Flartus said...

If you keep the chickens in the coop, with a heat lamp or something, it should stay warm enough that the water won't freeze for awhile. We used to feed ours twice a day, and also change out the water then. This was in northeast Ohio--the snowbelt, cold from October into April/May. So I wouldn't think you'd have to worry too much about heating your girls' water up through the winter. They'll be fine.

On the other hand, you could build an indoor spa in the corner of your living room, and invite the ladies in for tea... ;)

jeanives said...

it takes me less than a nano second to get tired of snow and ice, Ugh. And I don't much get the wonderland bit unless the sun splitting the trees; snow with gray skies is a black and white photo. It was MUCH warmer in Iceland last week, and what a fabulous place to visit. Put it on your list. I'll get a blog going about it but my PC has gone to the hospital so I'm working off the netbook which is a bit teensy.

Crazy Lady with purple fingers said...

This is the first time I have read your blog and love it, will be back, we live in southern Alberta and we had temps in the -30 last week. It has warmed up the last couple of days and although we have sun we also have gale force winds and drifting snow. The older I get the less I am loving winter, I did not realize you got that much snow in your part of Canada. Come over and visit sometime.

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