My life seems to be ruled by Murphy's Law. I finally got an entire weekend on my own - no obligations whatsoever! - and I lost half of it to Mother Nature. Ah, well. I put some hustle in my bustle Saturday morning and fairly burst out the door at sunrise. Since I had cleaned the coop and duck chalet the previous Sunday, I focused on the sheep. The unfortunate thing about my sheep (and also the endearing thing) is that they are very, very helpful. No matter what I am doing, they are there to snoopervise. Especially Linden, whose soft, lanolin-y head is always in my business. A large pumpkin was cut into fourths and put at a safe distance from me. This always works - for about 15 minutes. You have to work fast!
First on the list was to reinforce the hay racks in the barn for winter feeding. I had finally Gerry-rigged them onto the pallet fence that (barely) separates them from the hay, using twelve pieces of baling twine. I cut them down and screwed them to boards, top and bottom, using large washers so they couldn't man/sheep handle the feeders off the screws. Then I screwed the boards to the fence, using 3" screws. One poor rack had had bits of it broken off, so that called for some additional ingenuity - I wired the loop-less ends to the boards, then screwed over the wires so that they couldn't rub them off. Honestly, sheep.
I also walked the perimeter of the fencing and discovered that I will have to replace almost half of it next year. Early on, in my homesteading adventure, I had a lovely llama who had the very bad habit of leaning heavily on the fence, in order to reach the greenery on the other side. This was exacerbated by Linden, my sheep-goat, who took advantage of every weakness and wormed his way under various part of the fence. Luckily, he is too old and fat to do that now, but the damage has been done. I've patched the worst places, as we have a lot of coyotes and I do not want them getting under the fence, but it really needs to be replaced. When I delivered the Sunday morning barn baked goods, I talked to the high school kid that helps with the cows and he is interested in doing the heavy lifting.
I then spent the rest of the day battening down the hatches. There had been high wind and flooding warnings for days before, so I made sure that all small objects were safely closed away. I took down my wind chimes and my mirror chain. I brought in the fig tree and stacked buckets in the barn. I also tied the pergola to the deck rail. It has a definite list to port. I believe I will be calling the "architect" back for a look-see in the spring.
Sunday started with misty-type rain and I headed west of the city, early, to do some errands I have been putting off for months. I made it back just before the heavy rain to hit - let me just say that ALL dachshunds seem to hate rain - and squeezed in a potty break, then we hunkered down to wait it out. It was quite a storm. The wind was howling all night, with waves of rain bashing the house, which didn't do much for my insomnia. There is nothing like hearing a BAM and then BAM-BAM, and running through all the things that could cause it - trees coming down on your car. Trees coming down on the car port. I gave up trying to ignore it at 3 and then managed to get a cup off coffee on before the power went off. It came on an hour later, then went off again. Then came on. After the third time, I gave up resetting the clocks and pulled out my inflatable solar lights and started knitting.
Once the wind died down to a low roar, I stuck my head out and checked the car and carport - both okay! After that, I cleaned the guest bathroom (I had watched an episode of OCD extreme cleaning and got a shot of inspiration!), fed the dogs and took the day off from work. I suited up and, other than some major tree branches down and a couple of small trees and a truckload of leaves, there was no damage to the buildings. The fence was another ball of wax. At least the worst damage was to an area that the sheep are not in. My dairy farmer neighbor stopped by to discuss my cows and he happened to have his chainsaw in the truck. Ten minutes later, the tree was off the fence and I had stacked it in a nice, neat pile. I believe that a chain saw will be going on my list to Santa.