The Great White Blight… In Pictures



If you’re on Facebook, or if you peruse the local papers, then you’ve gorged on snow photos.

Well, I’m sorry to subject you to more. I promise, this’ll be quick and painless. And then we can move on:

With all the white hype, last Friday, Martin tried to resuscitate our tractor, which was suffering from starter problems.

With assistance, Martin kicked the tractor into gear, but it blew a hydraulic hose, which rendered the bucket inoperable. (The bucket was a lead actor in this performance.)



While Martin gave the tractor mouth-to-mouth, I went grocery shopping. The choices were slim pickings.



Snow started falling and accumulating on Friday night. By Saturday morning we were snowed in: the drifts sealed the mudroom door shut.



Snow permeated every crevice. In the mudroom, snow billowed through a wisp of a crack in the dog door. By morning, an inch of snow filled all of our shoes.



Much like the storm of 2010, the drifts piled up along the fencelines… and 18 inches really meant 3 or 4 feet.



The drifts proved too much for Maisie.



On Sunday — tractorless — we began to dig out. The horses were the first to be liberated.



The path to the sheep was ponderous.


Eventually we dug a trench to the sheep shed and — crawling and slogging — I ferried hay and water to them on a sled.

The sheep were utterly ungrateful.



All the while, the kids rode out the storm at my cousins’ house (where the risk of a power outage was minimal.)

It was a struggle over there:



Without an operable tractor, we were paralyzed. So we called for backup; Andy and his Cat plowed us out.

But first things first: we had to mark the drive, so Andy knew where to plow.



Andy removed the snow like a peel from an orange…



… and in the process, he created a mountain of snow… a sledding hill from what was once a plateau.

The kids built a luge run and an igloo.

It is part of the landscape until melting overcomes everything.

And life returns to normal.

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Break out the pots & pans


Nine o’clock last night was that “uh oh” moment. When the rain fell so hard, it obscured the satellite and blacked out the TV. And we realized that the roar outside wasn’t wind-related. It was from the force of the rain.

You can love an old farm house, but that house won’t love you back.

And affection doesn’t plug the porous leaks in worn out, wood siding. It certainly doesn’t change the direction of a storm… one that The Post said was fueled with circulation larger than “the mesocyclone of a typical supercell.”

What’s that in English? Approximately 5.2 inches of rain, delivered sideways, in mere hours.

Hurricane Sandy was the last time that we witnessed a similar event…. and since then, clapboard replacement has been all talk and no action.

As in 2012, last night’s rain permeated the north-west side of the house and dripped steadily from the ceiling in my office, the attic, and spots in the bathroom and spare bedroom.

Out came the pots, trash cans, plastic storage containers and towels. Some of the roaming drips were impossible to corral.

Even after the rain ceased, the scene was depressing: furniture shoved hastily out of the way, and a hodge-podge collection of buckets, scattered over several rooms.

I’ll think about that tomorrow, I thought in Scarlett O’Hara fashion, as I retired to bed.

But tomorrow is now today. And today’s forecast is foreboding.

Heavy rain from Joaquin is on the way.



This Week in Pictures




It’s been a long week, punctuated by doctors appointments, weather events and minor flooding, and I’m too tired to compose anything literary. So for you faithful Funny Farm followers, here are a few images recapping the week:

Martin and the kids continued their Mother’s Day tradition of planting a new berry bush in our garden. This year they added more raspberries and strawberries.






On Tuesday night another monster storm tore through the area. A weather event that’s typical in August, not May — a real gully-washer. Not to be confused with Thursday’s gully-washer. Here are Martin and Hadley, watching as it closed in.




And finally, notable this week: I dyed my hair.


I’ve been calling it “midlife crisis mauve,” but truthfully, my reasons for doing this are pretty mundane. I tinted my locks like an Easter egg because I felt the need for a change.  I wanted to shake things up… and the tattooist in town had the day off. Kidding, Mom.

It’ll wash out. Eventually.



Okay, so that’s it! Hope to see you local readers at the Potomac Hunt Races this Sunday.

Otherwise, stay tuned for a brand new episode of Funny Farm next week.