Sunday, November 25:

It has been cold for several days now.  When we go up to the monastery to feed the pigs we check the calves’ water and break the ice on top.  Their winter coats are thick and woolly, making them look like Montana cattlemen in fleece jackets, and they push up close to nose against our sleeves and lick our knuckles.  A sudden turn of one of their heads could catch a horn in the front of our jackets and take us for a sudden ride, and we remember why cowboys wear shirts with snaps:  so when they catch on a horn or a hoof or a PTO, they come off.

There are risks in every job.

Snow has been falling for the past two days, but with the ground as yet unfrozen and the wind allowing nothing to settle, very little snow has stuck.  Nevertheless, there are two pint-size snowmen in residence on the roof of Arthur the blind rat terrier’s box.  Miss no opportunities is the children’s motto.  When the ground was only frosted they were snowboarding down the steep slope above the barnyard where every cow pie is a mogul.