December 1, 2019

Winter Project List

In the past we've always done an annual goal list. I post it on January 1st and wrap up the year with a review post on how well we met those goals. This year, we seem to have fallen into a different pattern. Maybe it's because Dan is retired now, or maybe it reflects a shift in the kinds of project we do. Mostly, I think it's because our lives are more in sync with the seasons; everything seems to revolve around that. Everything we do fits into the pattern of the agrarian cycle I've blogged about.
  • Spring: March, April, May - season of planting
  • Summer: June, July, August - season of growing
  • Autumn: September, October, November - season to harvest
  • Winter: December, January, February - season of the hearth

This year we've started doing quarterly project lists instead of an annual one. The other day, we got out our notebook and made a winter project list. Here's what's on it.

  • build battery box
  • install batteries
  • connect batteries
  • move freezer
  • new chest freezer → convert to chest fridge
  • dig two more swale beds
  • cover and mulch main aisles
  • do something with that weedy corner!!!
  • fix the back gutter → rain tank?
  • cut old pecan tree in the goat corral
  • cut down dead dogwood in front yard
  • limb out trees shading pasture
  • cut and remove fallen pines
  • chipping
  • better (stronger) subdivision of buck pastures
  • start repair in browse areas
  • front porch trim
  • finally replace windows in front bedroom
Root cellar?
  • where?
  • dig out old swimming pool & evaluate
  • form a plan
  • where?
  • monitor winter sun in potential locations
  • dig out crepe myrtles 
  • cut back bushes

We prioritize and choose projects according to the weather. But winter can go either way for us; it can be either mild or miserable. There's no way to predict that, so except for finishing the solar pantry project, everything else on the list is flexible. Still, it's nice to have a written list of things to do in case the weather is cooperative. Dan, especially, is not one to sit around, so I suspect quite a bit of this will get checked off no matter what the weather does. 😀

Winter Project List © December 2019


The Wykeham Observer said...

I make a list also, mostly to just encourage me to get more things done, even if not on the list. If not on the list, I add it, then delight in crossing it off! Happy Winter to come! Phil

dong said...


Leigh said...

Phil, I suspect a number of things on that list won't get done, but at least we have everything written down. Dan, though, is a project guy and it's not unusual for him to ask for the list when he's in between projects. Crossing things off is the best part. :)

Dong, lol. I hope its a good "hmm."

Retired Knitter said...

I keep project lists as well - beyond my "to-do" list but I am not married to a "doer" and I have no free time to do both lists - or maybe I should say I don't have the energy to do both lists! Ha! You guys sure do a lot! Amazing really.

Toirdhealbheach Beucail said...

Leigh - as a long setter of goals that I almost always never seem to accomplish all of, I like the idea of seasons. Makes more sense, especially with the agricultural list.

I also am a fan of adding things to the list and then crossing them off as they come up after I have done them - makes me feel good!

Goatldi said...

Perfectly reasonable per seasons. I got a grin in reference to “the buck fencing”. Their intentions were honest even if you had a round of “whose your Daddy?”

I agree with Dan . What is next on the list got to do something. The last 48 hours have just about pushed me over the edge rain , yes we welcome it, but with no breaks blahhh?!

Renee Nefe said...

Your list makes me tired. LOL! It probably does not help that this time change is still messed up my body. Hubby is decorating the tree, because I just want a nap.

Everyone and their brother wants me to sew stuff for them, in time for Christmas. Nothing like waiting until the last minute. It also doesn't help when they don't know what it is they want...until they see what they don't want. argh oh well. I'm not taking the one client and putting the other one off until January.

In good news, Corian finally came out with a wood grain look counter top. Now to find someone who has it locally so I can see it in person without ordering the samples. :D Maybe I will finally get my kitchen redone in another 10 years. LOL!

Leigh said...

RT, my to-do lists tend more toward daily than our project lists. Are yours that way too? As far as doing a lot, it depends. Some of those things have been on several seasonal lists already!

TB, it's definitely rewarding to cross things off the list! And I am glad we switched to a seasonal list; seems to make things look more manageable. The other seasons seem to be busier, so winter gives us a chance to catch up on some things without pressure.

Goatldi, rain can drive an outdoor person crazy after a while!

Renee, its a busy time of year! Especially for folks who do a lot of handcrafted items. It's challenging, though, to please everybody!

I used to have a wood grain look counter top and loved it. Glad to hear they're back in style!

Cozy Thyme Cottage said...

Hi! What a neat organized way to get things done! Nancy

Hill Top Post said...

We make those dreaded lists too, but I am afraid some of the things get carried forward to the next new list. If you finish everything on your current list, you will have had a very good winter. :~)

Leigh said...

Nancy, well, at least we feel organized! LOL

Hill Top Post, I don't think we've ever completely finished a list yet! LOL But it's very helpful between large projects, like adding on the the carport, and seasonal projects, like planting. Otherwise, Dan is asking what needs to be done. This way, he just looks at the list and chooses whatever appeals to him. :)

Sam I Am...... said...

That is a great way to plan your year. Lots of projects there for one season. I also plan on being outdoors in the winter...depending on the weather but if it's mild and dry I'll be out there! It's better than the heat in summer and the growing of weds has slowed down...they never die out completely even if there are frosts. Hearty weeds down here! Good luck with your plans...knowing you two, it will all get done if Mother Nature cooperates.

Cockeyed Jo said...

I'm already in winter mode as far as hearth activities (spinning fiber into yarn and knitting for me and crocheting for Mel). I'm still behind by three new sweaters for the year. I may get it down by two for the total number of six new sweaters this year.

Outside projects include gearing up for launching our chicken farm and starting the quails on our homestead. We'll be building two new coops with 25' runs. We'll have 2-3 cage quail hutches done all from recycled and leftover materials. They will need to be painted fully in the spring.

We'll be researching/feasibility the option of electric/solar fencing by the area coyotes and other predators frequently enter our property. Continue looking for a guardian dog.

Leigh said...

Sam, that's the trouble with mild winters---hearty weeds!

Jo, I need to add some fiber activities to my personal project list! It's been awhile, since both spinning wheels and loom are packed away due to house remodeling. Winter is the best time, because there is time.

I'm interested in your quail project! And I hope the electric fence deters the coyotes. They are good jumpers. A Pyrenees would be an excellent addition for that.

Powell River Books said...

Looking at your list makes me wonder what is happening back at our float cabin. By the time we return it will be almost two months away. Our friend John is working on putting in a new cedar deck all around. He started in October and is still at it. He works alone and only on good weather days. Probably a good thing we aren't there. In addition to military bases, most fairgrounds have an RV park that you can use when the fair isn't in operation. We used quite a few of those. They aren't fancy, but are usually located near city resources. The one in Sacramento was perfect, near the American River with trails to walk and near stores and restaurants in walking distance. Without a car in tow that's important for us. - Margy

Unknown said...

That makes soooo much sense, to break it up by season!! Sounds like you have a bunch of great projects ahead of you....hope the winter cooperates so you can cross a bunch of things off your list!

Leigh said...

Margy, is the old deck where your floating garden is? I'm sure you get plenty of weather delays there this time of year.

The RV adventures sound like a lot of fun. It's nice to know about all the options out there for RVers.

Debbie, we seen to be keeping track of it better!

Cockeyed Jo said...

I've looked into Pyrennees, but they are cost prohibitive with our budget (as are most typical guardian dogs). Yes, coyotes can jump but we're hoping after they get zapped a couple times, they'll just give our property a wide berth. Ah, yes the quail! Mel's finally got all the screws, nails, and staples out of the wood pieces so building can commence this weekend. She dismantled 2 rabbit quad-pexes this week. So it will house 288 birds if I want that I don't, but who knows.

Leigh said...

Jo, yes, Pyrenees are outrageously expensive. We had a puppy given to us but he didn't have the instinct and wouldn't stop chasing chickens. Sometimes you can find LGD crosses, but the other problem is that all of those dogs are so big they have huge appetites and are expensive to feed! Hopefully, the electric fence will work just fine. Great weather to make progress in!

Kristin said...

I like a good list. This post reminds me that I haven't made a list in a long time. I think it's time to put pen to paper and start planning for next year. I like your goals and equally like that they're flexible. That's an important thing to keep in mind.

Leigh said...

Kristin, lists are soooo helpful, aren't they? And so is flexibility! LOL