Winter brings a whole new set of challenges on the farm. The routine chores suddenly take an even more adventurous turn. No, I’m not talking about the difficulties of navigating the manure slip and slide that we call a pasture. I’m also not talking about lugging extra food and bedding out to the animals to help them keep warm or even the frequent trips out to bust up the ice in the water troughs. Those are all standard struggles around a farm in the winter.
I’m talking about the bigger and more important issues we wrestle with, such as just how many layers do we need to wear to stay warm but not cross over into ‘bundle bound’ where you can’t move those necessary appendages to do chores. There’s a fine balance between warmth and mobility.
Here’s my winter tips:
First, always try to sucker, err…. convince, your spouse, partner, friend or other gullible victim to do the chores for you. You’ll be surprised at how many will believe you when you tell them about the joys of doing chores in the crisp, winter wonderland will bring you closer to nature. At least, they’ll believe you the first time. Be warned, you usually won’t get a second run with these people.
Second, if you can’t sucker anyone into doing your chores, you’ll need to keep a set of clothes a size or two larger than you normally wear. This will be necessary to fit your layers of long underwear on under your regular clothes. Trust me trying to squeeze yourself into your regular clothes with several layers on under them is like trying to cram yourself into a sausage casing. It’s quite the workout, frustrating and really not a pretty picture. To be fair this great effort might be just slightly exacerbated just a tad by over indulging during the holidays…..but nothing good can come from dwelling on the cause. Trust me, just buy some bigger clothes.
Lastly, once you are bundled up enough to stay warm outside, good planning is imperative. Truly…..*IMPERATIVE*. There are some “personal matters” that continue despite weather, how bundled up you are or how much effort it takes to get unbundled…… are you following me? Just remember that it takes much longer to waddle yourself to the house and unwrap all those layers, so be prepared for these delays or be prepared to face the consequences.
Those are my winter tips and just remember the better you are at tip #1 the less you have to worry about #2 and #3. You’re welcome and stay warm my fellow farmers!