Thursday, January 05, 2017

Cold Play and Just Plain Cold

When human nose hairs stick together like velcro, ya know it's cold.  Today marked the first velcro nose-hair morning here at the Lovestead.  

Has someone invented nose warmers?

Our Lovestead weather technology also told us it was below zero, not those balmy 7-degree blasts of air we've in the past few days.  

I knew we were on a downward slide yesterday when I took the dogs out to play.  They had their usual good time with Foster retreating to go nibble off the poodie pile while Kiwi and Liam feigned nasty stand-offs of snarling, growling and evil eyes over that ball tightly clutched between Liam's teeth.

It sounds and looks pretty scary, but the instant, I calmly say, "That's enough," the eyes turn warm and friendly and all is quiet until the next fake stand-off somewhere else in the field. 

This friendly canine combat has been good for Kiwi who's 11 cuz you'd never know she was that age 'cept for the white hairs around her eyes. 

She did show a sign of weakness during morning play yesterday, and that's when I knew for sure that it was definitely colder than the day before.  

When I looked over and saw her holding up a hind leg with a paw that had probably gone numb, I decided play time was over.  Kiwi never would have made that decision, and Liam would stay out there all day guarding that ball or chewing on a piece of wood. 

Anyway, the doggies stayed inside more than out yesterday because we had winds swirling around the place very reminiscent of those over on Great Northern Road.  In fact, yesterday's circular gusts were about the most intense we've experienced in our ten years out here in Selle.  

Still, we stay warm, thanks to a good wood stove and plenty of protection from trees. 

At our home on Great Northern, nothing stopped the wind, except for maybe the walls of the house, and those back bedrooms almost always nearly turned into walk-in freezer units.

So, we're happy being snug as bugs here at the Lovestead, and the animals are too. 

Another sign of the intensification of this full-fledged winter came yesterday afternoon when I walked out the door and saw a big moose standing in Taylor's field.  I rushed inside to get the camera, but the moose was gone that quickly, probably back into Gary Finney's woods. 

The moose may have left or gone out of sight, but Lefty's keen horse sense of intruders kept him pretty wired even when I put him in the barn. 

I continue to be amazed at how much more vigilant horses are about any minor change in their environment than just about any dog I've ever known. 

If the horses act as if something is amiss, it probably is while sudden dog barking and racing around the house, leaping to the couches, looking out the windows, barking more, racing more, etc. leads to little or no reason for all the ruckus more often than not. 

At least, they keep us off the couch with each outburst, making sure that someone is not pounding on the door.

Anyway, I think we've hit the valley floor for this stretch of bitter cold.  It may get to the teens today, which is still pretty a bit uncomfortable for outside activities, but when we see 20s tomorrow, we'll probably be shedding a few of those layers. 


For Throwback Thursday, we brought out mail box stand with us when we moved to Selle ten years ago.  Haven't had too many deliveries in its present spot near Bill's wood chopping pile, but it has collected a little snow with no need for a postmark. 

Besides illustrating just how brilliantly beautiful yesterday happened to be, this house takes me back about 50 years. We used to visit the place when Bill and Betty Cross (who taught health and P.E. for several years in Sandpoint) and their son Billy lived there.  The Crosses were close family friends because of horses and common interests.

I still marvel at the Father's Day picnic up Lightning Creek when Bill and Betty brought halves of chickens they'd raised and harvested.  Talk about some sumptuous barbecuing along with all the other sumptuous goodies both my mother and Betty supplied for our outdoor feast.

We enjoyed times spent with the Crosses and saw them on occasion after they moved to Walla Walla. 

A couple of Elton and Betty Anderson's hardy and well-fed horses----always a pretty sight while driving down Selle Road. 

This bunch lives down on the other end of South Center Valley Road at the old Burt/Withers/Watson place. And, yes, any horses I see in those pastures are always looking pretty healthy and happy. 

The snow is as dry as I've seen it in years and very pretty.  We like this snow a lot better than the wet, heavy stuff we usually get to shovel. 

Finally, this morning, the ZAGS, who were not even playing last night, came just two points and about two seconds from being the ONLY undefeated NCAA team in the nation.  

Those two points and two seconds worked out well, however, for Baylor, which squeaked out a victory over Iowa State last night after No. 1 and undefeated Villanova went down to Butler. 

So, now there are two undefeated teams, and the ZAGS have their work cut out for them this week, especially tonight as they face a 9-4 San Francisco team in league play.  

Fingers crossed for a good outcome----ESPN2 at 6 p.m. PST.  GO, ZAGS!  

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