This summer we started reading an epic fantasy series, Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire, starting with A Game of Thrones. It features a land where seasons lasted years, not months. Years of summer, followed by years of winter. One of the protagonists has a family motto, "Winter is Coming." It reminds people that summer is lovely, but must be used to prepare for hard times, not to fool around wasting time and money on political intrigue.
I have my own task list to get ready for winter:
Major Project #1: Unload several rooms of my mother's house into a storage unit, so we can get major plumbing repairs done over the winter. We won't heat her house most of the winter. I hate to spend money renting storage, but there is no place else to go with it, and Mom could not handle the emotional strain of large-scale disposal.
Major Project #2: Our landlord won't insulate our attic, so we will. We need the space (otherwise finished) as a bedroom, to make room for my mother to stay with us this winter. That will mean shifting the girls to share the attic BR, put my mom in the warm BR next to the bathroom, and move all of our desks and bookcases to the second BR to make better living space downstairs. Yes, we are moving nearly everything we own from one room to another! :-)
- Order bubble wrap for the windows, and working on arranging the heavy window drapes.
- Get garlic planted.
- Buy a chest freezer so we can take advantage of friends' hunting prowess. We passed up a deer last year, that we could have had for the cost of butchering. (Done 9/26)
- Finish fitting out the basement storage area. Make bulk food purchases of dry and canned goods, vegetables for cellaring, bulk meat for the freezer, and basic toiletries.
- Get straw bales for mulching, and to make a cold frame. Bag leaves for mulch.
- Buy another oil-filled electric radiator, our transitional heat source.
- Sort through clothing barrels to see who needs more heavy winter clothing. Continue shopping at rummage sales - church bazaar season is starting.
- Buy fermenting buckets to make hard cider. (Done 9/26)
- Get the rest of the books in Martin's series, for winter reading.
- Update our tetanus shots.
- Hang rods for indoor clothes drying. (Done 9/30)
- Late addition: Set up the worm composting bins.