Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Is the opposite of spring cleaning called winterizing?

It seems to me that there is as much to do to prepare for winter as there is to clean up in the spring. We have spent the past couple of days scurrying like a couple of squirrels in the process of gathering and storing acorns.

First, there was the trip to Costco which was truly in the vein of acorn storage. We packed in supplies for a year: laundry detergent, different sized baggies, dishwashing detergent, computer paper, toilet paper, BOUNCE, cat food, canned goods, huge jars of mayonnaise and pasta sauce and peanut butter, cans of nuts and bags of pasta, packages of meat for the freezer, and my favorite purchase was a big slow cooking crock pot to make soups and stews--the best kind of winter food. The Costco trip required major re-organization of cupboards, pantry, refrigerator. and freezer after we unloaded the truck, and Cindy jumped right into that task with relish!

Next, was the trade out of summer clothes for winter clothes. I don't know where I picked up this practice. Maybe it comes from having Chicago relatives, but I've long been in the habit of seasonal clothes storage. Cindy and I use this time to cull through clothes and clear away things that we didn't/won't wear and/or don't fit anymore--in my case because they're too tight and in hers because they are too big (SIGH). Getting the boxes down off the closet shelves late in the fall is like an early Christmas because there are always articles of clothing we forgot about, so it's like getting new clothes. Our closets are now neatly arranged and there are two big boxes in the front room awaiting transport to the thrift store.

Finally, there is the outdoor winterizing. We did a little bit of that work prior to the first big rain. We got all of the yard tools and summer furniture put away back then. But that rain caught us up short on gutter cleaning for the downpour created overflows that made their way through a couple of windows. We also have to maintain a gutter that runs the length of our yard along the road, down which significant run-off from the mobile home park flows. Each year, it has to be cleared of overgrown vinca and several inches of dirt and decaying leaves. We have 4 big oaks on the side of the house that had all kinds of dead wood as well as several large branches over the house that needed cutting back. We started on the work on Saturday and gave up exhausted after two hours to call Argos to the rescue. They sent Mike yesterday, and he did a beautiful job of finishing off the work. The yard is all spiffy now.

As much as I love wood heat, I'm relieved that we don't have to pile in wood stores on top of this other work--a chore currently at the top of the list for the rest of my family all of whom have wood stoves. We've done plenty of work already, and there is still leaf fall to blow and rake next month. I must admit, however, that the satisfaction of getting everything done is a great feeling.

Happy winterizing!

No comments: