You let the fire die and there’s no kindling left because you didn’t pick up enough. What did you do that for? Good thing kindling grows native here!
Even in the snow.
Most kindling grows underground in winter weather, but wild patches ready for harvest stick out above the frosty coverlet. Come on, I’ll show you! Get the buckets.
What do you mean, I have to get the buckets? YOU’RE the one who let the fire go out!
What do you mean I’m talking to myself?
Maybe I’ve been marooned too long.
This is what our driveway looks like, which is why I can’t remember the last time I went anywhere:
I’m not the one who made those tracks. The Queen of England made the tracks when she visited me with her entourage. Wait, that didn’t happen…. Yet.
At least I have dogs for company. The dogs are real. I think!
They run out ahead of me. Harvesting kindling is their favorite thing.
Here’s the pond. They walked straight across it. They walked on water!!! They are gods among dogs!
I can walk on water, TOO!
I hear a CRACK and back off onto solid snowy ground. I am not as divine as dogs.
Or I’m heavier.
Hark! I have discovered a hearty brace of kindling blooming forth from the snow!
I claim the finest pieces for my buckets, but find it too green for my liking.
The best wild kindling is dry, inside and out.
The dogs have reconnoitered a better patch further on.
I knew there was a reason I brought them with me.
Never mind. Knaves, all.
Boomer: “Eat his head, Giant Puppy. Your mouth is big enough. I won’t look. There will be no witnesses!”
I harvest the kindling on my own, but it’s a good patch. Gourmet kindling! Dry and sturdy.
I fill the buckets with my bounty.
The river is down below, partially frozen.
The house is way back that way.
Also frozen due to lack of kindling.
But ’tis frozen no more!
It’s warm! I have kindling! I’m ready for the Queen. When’s she coming? She’s not coming? WHAT?! Hello?
That was cute… 😀
On January 18, 2011 at 2:30 am
Nic, SD says:
I am not as divine as dogs.
Or I’m heavier.
Got a good lol from that one, thanks 😆
On January 18, 2011 at 3:39 am
Must be some good smoke that native kindling puts out! hehe
On January 18, 2011 at 3:49 am
When we build a fire, we do the search for kindling thing too….but it is usually in the wood shed where we pick up pieces of bark or twiggy, rotten wood pieces. The woods are too far off!
The dogs seem to be enjoying the snow!
On January 18, 2011 at 5:59 am
As the old ad says, “You’ve come a long way, Baby!” Remember when you couldn’t start a fire?
On January 18, 2011 at 6:24 am
Yes, a fire fit for a queen. Thanks for starting my day off with a Big Smile.
On January 18, 2011 at 6:41 am
Beautiful photos! Love the ones of the dogs frolicking in the snow.
On January 18, 2011 at 7:53 am
On January 18, 2011 at 7:54 am
Yankee in NC says:
I am so glad that I do not have to hunt for wild kindling! Although, a walk in the woods with that wild pack of dogs looks like fun!
On January 18, 2011 at 7:58 am
“The snow is beautiful and the walk in the woods was really nice,” she said as she sat close to the fire in her pink fluffy robe!
On January 18, 2011 at 8:20 am
just wondering how did you break your dogs from killing any of your chickens?? especially the terrier looking one!!! share your trick with me please.
On January 18, 2011 at 8:33 am
lilac wolf says:
lmao – that was so funny – specially the little dog “go ahead and eat his head” 😆 :happyfeet:
On January 18, 2011 at 8:34 am
Walking with dogs is so fun!! I have 3 dogs too and they LOVE to walk with me all over our farm. Sometimes I put the kindling in empty feed sacks, the ones without the plastic in between the paper layers. That helps me start a fire, I’m not to great at starting a fire though. I just LOVE your blog, We do a lot of the same things. Kindred spirits I never would have known about except for your wonderful blog!!
On January 18, 2011 at 8:47 am
Lisabeth Olson says:
Poor Queen of England, look at all she missed. What a great day you have being the Queen of Stringtown Farms. :woof: :snoopy: :hug:
On January 18, 2011 at 8:55 am
Her Majesty the Queen sends her regrets. There is snow on the ground at Heathrow again and all air travel in Europe has been suspended until they can find the shovel.
I could go out in the forest and hunt for kindling. Or….I could open the box of fatwood from LL Bean. And cheat!!!!! Hahahahahahaha!
On January 18, 2011 at 8:58 am
Yankee Gal says:
Where’s the Dookie Dog? What a pretty day to go harvest some sticks. Hugs.
On January 18, 2011 at 9:01 am
Suzanne McMinn says:
Dookie is older and wiser. It’s warmer and more comfortable on the porch!
On January 18, 2011 at 9:07 am
Loved this! Are you sure Queen Elizabeth isn’t stuck in the snow at the end of your road? Better send out a search & rescue party!
On January 18, 2011 at 9:09 am
Linda Segerson says:
Better that you were out of kindling than FIRE WOOD! I see the dogs are not much help gathering kindling, kind of like children…..they had rather play, but maybe someday!
On January 18, 2011 at 9:18 am
No thanks on a dunking in freezing water in January. I’ve been initiated into that club once and that was enough of this girl.
On January 18, 2011 at 9:26 am
Love those pups in the snow!!! Nothin’ better! Except maybe baby goats in the goat house…
On January 18, 2011 at 9:30 am
Oh my, Suzanne….that was delightful!!! lololololol…..so, so cute! I LOVED that real-life story! :happyflower:
On January 18, 2011 at 9:36 am
Suzanne, I shared my Happy Card today and blogged about your great post last week…come over for a visit!
On January 18, 2011 at 9:41 am
Carmen C. says:
I love how much fun your fur babies have:) the fire looks warm and cozy too, especially after that view of your drive;) Stay warm and enjoy the day!!!
On January 18, 2011 at 9:42 am
I think we have the same kindling hobby.
On January 18, 2011 at 9:45 am
Nancy K. says:
I am embarrassed to admit that I thought the title to your post was referring to reading on a “Kindle” (electronic reader), out in the snow. Perhaps I’m a bit TOO connected???
Glad you got the fire going!
On January 18, 2011 at 9:53 am
Brenda E says:
I love your stories Suzanne. They are so enjoyable and I feel like I’m right there with you. Love your photography also and how you put comments to the animals’ actions. You are a great writer – yep you are.
On January 18, 2011 at 10:01 am
claudia w says:
Fun pictures. It looks a little too cool for my old bones, I’m sitting here slightly spoilt in 45 degree weather.
On January 18, 2011 at 10:09 am
Cheryl LeMay says:
Cute post but I couldn’t help noticing all the snow on your steps.Do you have a shovel to clear those off? It doesn’t take much of a misstep to get hurt and where you live it’d be difficult to get help.Maybe I’m paranoid but the older you get the more you think of your physical safety.
On January 18, 2011 at 10:19 am
Linda Goble says:
You are so funny. thanks for a laugh. We are having miserable weather here today. no school. If you lived closer I would bring you lots of kindling. Our woods have lots of pines that keep falling over. They make great kindling. I take branches and whack them on the tree to break them up. Stay warm. :snowman:
On January 18, 2011 at 10:37 am
Sounds like a bad case of cabin fever.
You’d better get some cross country skiis and go visit your relatives before you start peeling and eating wallpaper, Suzanne.
On January 18, 2011 at 11:00 am
Silly puppies, everything is an adventure for them! :snoopy:
On January 18, 2011 at 11:11 am
Now if you could teach all 3 dogs to fetch, then you could just simple send them out to ‘fetch’ your kindling. lol
On January 18, 2011 at 11:43 am
That’s a cold, cold world you’re living in. YOU LET THE FIRE GO OUT??!! Brrrr.
That Casper is a troublemaker, no doubt about it, but it looks like Coco knows how to keep order. Up to a point…
On January 18, 2011 at 11:54 am
Miss Becky says:
this was a delightful little kindling-gathering jaunt into your woods Suzanne! thanks so much. it was a whole lot of fun. :yes:
On January 18, 2011 at 12:00 pm
trish c says:
I have cabin fever just from the fact that I lost my job last week. It is tough not getting up and going to work in the morning. I miss my work friends.
This blog helps me to get through. I also loved the pic of Boomer looking the other way!!! lol
On January 18, 2011 at 12:20 pm
What fun, what beautiful snowy scenery, and beautiful, happy dogs! Lucky you, to be able to walk out in that lovely woods, instead of a paved street. Scenery worthy of a queen, for sure! I really enjoyed all the photos–just like being there myself. I Can’t afford a lot of pets–so seeing your dogs is just great.
On January 18, 2011 at 2:02 pm
Window On The Prairie says:
Just love a walk in the woods in the winter snow. My husband and I did that over the weekend.
On January 18, 2011 at 2:07 pm
Laura Pintor says:
I absolutely LOVE the pics. of the frisky dogs:)
Glad you got some kindling, I keep an eye out for it when I’m snowshoeing.
On January 18, 2011 at 2:43 pm
I clicked on this post thinking it said Knitting in the Snow.
My 6 yr old likes to pick up kindling on our way home from her Kindergarten class. She’s so resourceful! 😉 Actually, she just really likes sticks. I use them for kindling to keep the stick population down in our neighborhood. We have no trees at our house, it’s sad.
On January 18, 2011 at 2:59 pm
Okay, I don’t know if it’s that I’m just not handling the cold at all well this year or what but all I keep thinking of is your freezing fingers while you are taking those pictures. Is there a secret to taking pictures in cold weather?
On January 18, 2011 at 8:04 pm
Suzanne McMinn says:
lavenderblue, I use fingerless gloves. It helps.
On January 18, 2011 at 8:19 pm
Fingerless gloves, good idea! I’ll have to get me some.
On January 18, 2011 at 10:29 pm
LOL, too funny. Man, I hate it when the fire goes out! If you can get your hands on some, old pallets make wonderful kindling. And free too!
On January 18, 2011 at 11:29 pm
Yes, we have very messy poplar trees that give us free kindling all year long….if someone would just pick it up! I end up taking a piece of our firewood and chopping it into little pieces of kindling. Watch those fingers!
On January 19, 2011 at 12:58 am
Its post like this… and living with you, that makes me question your sanity.
On January 19, 2011 at 8:53 pm
Morgan, you mean you still have QUESTIONS??? It is not OBVIOUS???
lol Ah the things we parents do to embarrass our kids. Or perhaps, it’s just that our kids are easily embarrassed.
On January 21, 2011 at 12:43 am
I am smiling at this post and pics….We attempted ourselves today to gather more wood, as the January blast of artic air has us burning ever more of our precious dwindling woodpile! But winds from the South at about 30mph drifted the once plowed path to that there patch of woods to getting-stuck depths. So, next weekend we shall attempt it again! We can hunt kindling, if we follow our black lab’s pathways around the windbrake! 🙂 Say, your Butter Sticks look suspiciously like my Butter Dips recipe in ye old Betty Crocker Cookbook! I agree they are great as is out of the pan, are wonderful with soup…and are great sprinkled with cinnamon sugar, then drizzled with a powdered sugar glaze while still warm! They are awesome for warming up the hands of winter wood gatherers!!!
On January 23, 2011 at 9:26 pm
:woof: Suzanne-my Hubby does a lot of feeding of the birds and has to carry a couple of very large buckets, when there is snow on the ground it is difficult for him to walk carrying the buckets,so I took an old sled and attached a plastic storage bin on top of the bed, so he can set his buckets in the bin and pull the sled and it makes it easier and safer for him. It may work for you also when gathering your wood,—we need to get you a set of cross country skis and a back pack so you can visit your neighbors LOL what ever you do , be care and carry your cellie.
On January 27, 2011 at 4:01 pm
What fun foraging for kindling with you and the dogs :pawprint: It’s beautiful in your snowy woods. Loved seeing the dogs enjoying themselves. Great pics, Suzanne! Thanks for sharing.
On January 29, 2011 at 8:04 am
Runningtrails - Sheryl says:
We have used a lot fo kindling and wood this year too! I gather the sticks in summer, as well as fall and witner and make a bit pile under the far oak tree. At least I know where it is when we run out. Going out to get it is another story…lol!
On January 29, 2011 at 2:35 pm
That ain’t no shack in the woods! Sure wish I was you!!!
On January 31, 2011 at 12:23 am
Sue Nugent says:
:snuggle: Great trip for getting excercise for all, but age and all it brings does make one want to stay inside more.Do you live near any Amish?We get slabs from them for free. Bring them home and cut them in small pieces for fire starting(when it does go out or get low.We,like you,try not to let it get that low.)We keep our wood under cover and dry as much as possible.That helps with getting a quick fire going.Fire tending around her is a chore and a full time job in itself. The electric bills of local folks are 2,3, and $400.plus.I would die a natural death if I got an electric bill like that. I work on mine constantly trying to keep it down.We keep our furnace off most of the time, and keep a steady fire going.With the ice storm, we had access to a lot of downed wood,too.
Love yor posts and all of the great picturess,too.
On January 31, 2011 at 4:42 am
Loved this post, especially the dogs!! We have a Great Pyrenese (sp?) too & she absolutely LOVES the snow!!!
On February 13, 2011 at 5:02 am
Hahaha…Ohhh I love this post. It sure was a good read! Made me laugh, made me smile. Made me wish I was somewhere in the snowy east coast gathering kindling to warm up my own home. Out where I live it doesn’t snow in winter. How I wish I lived somewhere where it did snow! Enjoy that winter experience for those of us who can’t! Blessings.
On November 16, 2012 at 2:29 am