December, 2014: I can’t believe it’s not weather

I couldn’t believe it was actually happening.

I hung up the phone to begin watering the trees, I heard a soft pinging all over the leaves. It was ice. Tiny ice pellets, denser than snow, but too small to be hail, fell on the ground. And I began to water the trees…during an icing. I had to shake my head; what amazing timing and what a sense of humor our Lord has. :)

During the last 10 days or so, when temperatures have stayed below freezing most of the day and all of the night, our pond has frozen rather thoroughly. The surface ice was so thick, we walked on most of it for several days. We chipped out a chunk more than 2 inches thick. It was (literally) hard…to believe.

My children pulled each other on snow discs across the pond. When they looked at what they could see under the ice, they found two turtles and the largest frog I’ve ever seen in the wild. All of them were moving, so I guess we’ll see (and hear) them in a few months when things thaw out.

Since we didn’t have any real snow on the ground Sunday night, we improvised indoors with some cloth and rubbery artificial snowballs. We threw them around for part of the Sunday night class for 5th and 6th graders my wife and I help to teach. It was fun. They were lighter than real snow, and didn’t hurt a bit, but they were harder to aim, so we missed. A lot. I had never seen any substance like them. I couldn’t believe you could make artificial snowballs that were similar to the real thing.

Our kids couldn’t believe the new chore packs system we began implementing this week. Each child has a lanyard with a plastic case, in which are slipped the cards for all their chores for that day. They can’t go do their own thing until all chores are completed for that time of day, and we have the master list for reference. So far, so good. Although there are few bugs. Our bed won’t get made until next week, and one of our kids doesn’t have to vacuum as much as the others, but that’s okay, right? Honey?

Our newest addition, Livie, has become fascinated with faces. She wants to touch them, but it’s kind of iffy whether she will gently caress, or claw madly, or shove a finger in whatever opening she can find. She’s cute, but a little dangerous if you aren’t prepared. She can’t believe her new friend…in every mirror she sees. They have the best time. :)

I had a hard time believing that my children could beat me at geography, although to be fair, they had played this particular game more than I had. My son bested me at South American countries, but I took North America in straight sets. We’ll have to have a rematch, maybe in Europe. Neither of us will win Asia or Africa; there’s just too many countries without distinctive shapes to keep track of them all correctly. It should be fun. It’s kind of rewarding to see your children passing you up, going beyond you, and succeeding more than you did. I hope it is for you.

I know you just won’t believe this, but I entered…a beard-growing contest! Yep, I know my whiskers just barely show up…after a day, and that my smooth face stays smooth for almost a few hours before you can feel the fuzz returning, but what the hey, I thought. Let’s have some fun with it. I have yet to hear what the prize is for winning, so I’m not paying the entry fee until I hear that the prize is worth it. This is one area where I absolutely refuse to lose money by winning. I guess I hold the same position in other areas, too…

I have such a fun job. I was assigned to turn some old pumpkins into compost, and a hatchet was suggested as an appropriate tool. Mwa-ha-ha-ha! Just call me Slashing Pumpkins, Jack-o-lantern the Ripper, or Jack the Pumpkin Shredding King, cause I had the best time destroying those gourds. They were frozen, too. I know that’s just not believable, especially in January, but take my word for it. The scavengers would have to be pretty desperate to eat these things.

Later, when temperatures warmed up to 60+ degrees, and I was outside, I caught myself wondering if I should put on suncreen…in January! I laughed out loud at that thought. But this is Oklahoma, where you always take what you need if the temperature goes way up, way down, or rains, because it just might before you get home again. Our weather is very independently minded. Or just plain rebellious; we’re not sure exactly how to describe it.

We accept it, though, just as it is. I suppose most people in most places are the same about their weather. We know we can’t change it, we know it will be better than someone else’s for part of the year, and we know all locations on this planet have weather challenges. It strikes me that this is a good reminder of our life in Christ while on this earth.

We know every Christ follower has trouble, wherever they live, whatever their situation. We know life with Christ brings amazing blessings and memorable difficulties. We know we can’t change Him, but knowing we must change according to Him. Eventually, we accept Him as He is, knowing He has accepted us as we are. We go into each day aware that circumstances and attitudes can swing high or low suddenly, and that we must make preparations for both. So it seems that living in Oklahoma’s weather can help prepare me for a life with Christ. I wonder what your home is doing for your life? God designed it to do something good, I bet. Send your Oklahoma brethren word of your adventures by leaving a comment, and see how easily we believe your impossible stories. Hey, we believe that Oklahoma weather is predictable, right?

And then we butchered a turkey. Really. See you next post.

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