Hello all! It’s wintertime!
And I have a SLED!
Have I mentioned this sled before?
I mean, it’s nothing exciting; it’s a plastic molded sled of the sort you buy your kid so they can go down the hill, or at least it’s really similar to the one I had to go sledding downhill at the nearby park (Rochester is on the plain that used to be in Lake Ontario, so the option is the park with a hill (which may have been manufactured, I never asked) or… well, that’s about it. In Ithaca, I could sled half my commute, if I was feeling daring.)
What it is, for me, is just about the size of the totes we use to haul firewood.
Our garage, you see, where the firewood is (or is in front of, since we didn’t get it stacked this year quite yet…) is about 100 feet from the house, which only seems like a lot when a) you’re trying to buy the right length hose for your garden, or b) the snow is up to your knees and you still need to bring firewood in.
So I got a sled!
Of course, we have not had a whole lot of snow yet, other than that one day where they closed my job and everything else in the city, but it’s early. We have 2 months of Really Likely Snow, a month of Pretty Likely Snow, and another month and a half of Potentially Snow to go before we get to Proper Spring, aka Memorial Day / Nearly Summer.
But I HAVE gotten a chance to use my sled (i used it a bit last year too) and it’s awesome. T has discussed bolting a piece of plywood to the top for better balance (it’s almost the width of our bins, which means they sit a little crooked (they are the big and OMG Big size of Rubbermaid totes); crooked is fine in low snow but in deep snow it spills the thing at least once on the way back to the house), but even without it, it’s so much easier than trying to carry the wood. I love it.
Sidetrack! (I had a teacher in High School who called these “bird walks.”)
This tote, the OMG Big one, we Freecycled back when we were new in the house and Freecycle in Ithaca was still pretty good (lately it’s a lot of “does anyone have?” And almost no “I’ve got this thing”, but when it was good we got some cool stuff, like this bin, a scythe…)
So anyway, the tote is nearly my armspan in length, proportionally wide, almost hip-height in depth — huge. It had a hole cut in it because someone had used it as a cat litter… house? I mean, I could probably fit all three of our cats’ litter boxes in there and have room left over for a possum, so I’m not quite sure, but it was, after all, free. The hole, T covered over with a cutting board that was… not a good cutting board, but a very good patch for a tote. It’s bright yellow, and he taped around the edges and then in a + across the middle in black duct tape, so it looks like this Very Bright and Sunny Window. It makes me smile every time, even when I’m hauling So Much Firewood in it, singing my Anvil of Crom song as I drag my sled through the snow.
And maybe we’ll have snow again soon. Because it’s kind of a weird winter, when it’s my week of vacation and it’s raining. Snow’s prettier, after all.
It hides all the imperfections, the bumps and junk and leaf mould, and all the trees with no leaves look so much prettier and more like they’re meant to be that way when they’re covered in snow.
And, of course, my sled works a lot better when there’s snow.
On the cat litter house: I have seen a setup like this to keep a large dog out of the cat food and cat litter. There were two separate large boxes (theirs were built out of plywood) with a cat-sized entry in one short end and tops that could be lifted off for cleaning. The cats could enter easily to eat their dinners and do their business in peace, but even if the dog got down low and got his head into the boxes, all the interesting things were at the back out of reach.
Oh, that’s a good idea! When we dogsit my “little bothers,” I have to keep Eli out of the litter box. That’s a good reason for that.
Yeah, I wouldn’t have thought of it, but it made perfect sense once I saw it (and knew about the household critters.) The tops of the boxes were also at convenient windowsill height for the cats to sit on.
They’re sweeties, yeah, not very well disciplined but very sweet.
Oh the sled is an excellent idea!. My parents haul wood in 5 gallon buckets, but it has a much sorter distance to go.
We also use 5-gallon buckets, but the bin is a lot easier to fill efficiently 😀