In case you were wondering I'm still here, I've just been busy working a lot. I've had a few random odd job offers on top of my normal work schedule and they have kept me pretty busy. But hey, I've got a loan I am trying to pay down in record time, so odd jobs for some extra cash are a good thing. Plus they have been things I enjoy like snow shoveling or dog sitting.
The last few weeks have been pretty sunny with very little new snow. I've seen some stunning alpine glow sunsets on the mountains surrounding my area.
We've had some beautiful hoarfrost mornings where everything is covered in a delicate network of lacy ice crystals. At least until the sun burns through and touches them.
And then we've had quite a few unseasonably warm days. Close to fifty degree F. for several of them. That has compacted and shrank the snow piles around my house a lot!
The kitties all seem to be getting along well and enjoying life together. They all show up on the porch when I get home or wake up in the morning. In between I'll see them perched in the tree branches, stilling on logs, sprawling in the sun, snoozing on top of my van, hiding out under the house, or curling up in the little igloo I built them.
They've caught a few mice as the snow has started to recede and expose the mouse tunnels. I'm not sure if Wynn actually has caught her own yet, or if she's just watching the bigger boys and then playing with the ones they have already killed. Either way, I'm thinking there will be way less mice moving into my van this spring compared to last!
Manipi has now lost the tips of his ears that he'd gotten frostbit in his wild runaway adventure. But they seem to be healing up just fine, not bothering him at all, and he doesn't even look as weird as I thought he might without them.
Luther I thought would end up as the boss cat just due to his size, weight, and youth, but Manipi has kept that spot and when he wants to go or be anywhere, Luther moves over for him. It's been amusing to watch them sort out their hierarchy.
I've had friend's over for dinner. We enjoy a meal as close to totally grown and preserved by me and off this ground as possible for the middle of winter in WY. No I didn't make the wine.
But someone had asked me for photos of eating the things I grew or preserved this past summer. Here you go. Elk burgers (from this ground and that I processed along with some friends), sprouts (I grow these all winter), pickled beets (that I grew and pickled), dill pickles (I made, but only a few of the cucumber came from my garden), Danish christmas cabbage (I made with the cabbage I grew), and avocados from a friend's back yard in CA. The fresh tomatoes just came from the grocery store.
Hanging out and talking by candle and wood stove light makes for a relaxing evening.
My little stove is still doing a great job of keeping my whole place toasty and warm.
I've seen more amazing big wildlife. Like this line of mostly sizable bull elk walking through the one heavy wet snow that we have had recently.
These two had the biggest racks.
And more moose, chewing on willows and then bedding down and eating snow.
I'll do a real report on that wood stove soon, but at least here is a little catch up on life here from my tiny house!