December: Now is the time we have to prepare for tomorrow. When we have 70 to 80 degree temperature, it’s hard to think of ice covering us tomorrow. Were you prepared for the freezing rain, sleet and snow that came the first week in December? The bottom of my gates were frozen in 3 inches of ice. A lot of s had roofs cave in as the heavy ice accumulated. My garden cat following me to see about the chickens got stuck in the new fluffy snow. When he jumped into the 8 inch snow, his little legs didn’t reach anything solid. He screamed for help. He also complained because he didn’t have his favorite food, even though he had plenty to eat. I think there were a lot of people like that.

My son said, "If you have brown rice, beans and oats, you won’t starve. I suggest that you get your turnips inside before the next storm. If you don’t have turnips, maybe you have dear friends who will bring you some. I grate turnips and carrots, add a pinch of salt and mayonnaise, it makes a great salad. Another good winter salad is raw cabbage and Jerusalem artichokes. With sauerkraut and corn bread, you can have a feast each day.

A friend gave me this advice, if it grows on a plant eat it, if it is made in a plant don’t eat it.

Plants have grown well under the grow light. There is extra heat in that room. Our pepper plants have produced peppers in our unheated green house. They give us nutrition for our muscles and help keep our heart strong.

Our roads are clear and that should help the Holiday travelers stay safe.

Let’s not forget the early December ice storm. Let’s get and stay prepared for the next one.

From Wit and Wisdom: "Live in each season as it passes, breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit and resign yourself to the influence of the earth." ~ Henry David Thoreau. "What good is the warmth of the summer, without the cold of the winter to give it sweetness." ~ John Steinbeck.

January: This year has a different kind of winter than any I’ve known. We have a couple of warm days and I feel convinced, "Oh! We are having an early spring. I must get my garden seeds from the basement." Then the next two days, the winter temperature is back again. It’s still and January and wintertime.

We can plant some seeds though and watch them grow in the kitchen window. Sprout seeds for your salads. I think turnip and radish seed sprouts are so good in our winter salads.

Some house cleaning can be done while we wait for time to garden. Get caught up on those letters you thought about writing to your friends. Don’t forget your exercises. Keep in shape for the gardening, you will do. There is a lot of work coming!

We know good food from the earth will bring good health with happiness for all seasons.

Columnist Lallah Lee Ostergren has been an organic gardener for 40 years.