Winter Survival

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Christmas is now over and we are in what feels like the most awkward week of the year. Some people will hurry to take down their lights and decorations while others will wait until after the new year. The stores will put the Christmas stuff on sale to empty the shelves for whatever comes next. The holiday is over but not really over because there is another one coming up shortly.

We had a scare on Christmas Eve when the furnace went out. In a bit of foreshadowing, the company who services the thing had sent an email out the day before talking about long delays because of call volume. Figures that furnaces pick the coldest days of the year to stop working. The good news for us is it turned out to be related to something else and, after a few hours, I was able to reset it and get it going again.

The snow we were supposed to get basically fizzled out and we ended up with about an inch. We got the cold and the wind though. I’ve spent a lot of time over the last couple of days refilling all the various bird feeders we have around the house. The birds need to eat a lot to stay warm and stay alive since we don’t normally have below 0 temperatures.

The bluebirds were the busiest. The feeder doesn’t hold a lot but it seemed like every couple of hours, I was tossing in another scoop of the meal worms. They had to have been watching because they’d show up almost the second I got back into the house. There were 8 to 9 of them fighting over the food. But the other feeders were packed with birds almost from sunrise to sunset.

The good news is that extreme cold like that never lasts long. Every day the temperatures got a little warmer and we are supposed to be well above freezing by the end of the week. Hopefully, that will take some of the stress off the birds.

We had a nice Christmas – especially because the furnace was working. Actually, we’ve been in the house since Friday. I had to get out and shovel what little snow we got but we didn’t go anywhere as there was just no reason to venture out into the cold. So it was a nice, quiet time.

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