Friday, March 30, 2012

Jumping Poodle

 Jumping with her poodle
 Flying together
 Enjoying a warm night
"The most important thing in living was to reach out and touch perfection in that which they most loved to do, and that was to fly." 
 Richard Bach, Johnathan Livingston Seagull

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Mother Rooster

85:366 Mother Rooster

One of the interesting things that we learned about Silkies when Sidney was choosing her show breed last year, was that the roosters are broody, and may very well assist hens by sitting on a clutch of eggs.  Since until just recently we haven't had any compatible (size wise) birds to house with Topaz, we did not know if this would be the case.  When we moved the D'uccles and Topaz outside from the barn last week, we also added to two baby (now 4 month's old) D'uccles to the mix.  It has been a happy introduction and Topaz is very protective of them.  The last couple of mornings our temperatures have been cooler, more seasonal.  I tried to capture a shot, the second day when I let them out, and the above was as close as I could get.  What is so sweet about the proximity of the birds is that when I opened the house to peek in, topaz had one of the young girls tucked under each wing and was keeping them warm.  You have heard the phrase mother hen, right?  Well I must say it is so cool to have a mother rooster!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

What A Difference 48 Hours Makes!


 On a delightfully foggy Saturday morning in March, you never know what you are going to come across on your way to collect eggs in the barn.  As I stroll up the drive, something catches my attention out of the corner of my eye.  I then shake my head to a double take and skip a little when I see that there is masses of asparagus making its way up.  Some of it large enough to pick!  Please keep in mind that the last time I searched and poked around for some sign of spear life was Thursday evening and there was nothing to be found.  What a difference two days of rain can make!

Unfortunately, that same rain quadrupled the number of very aggressive weeds growing.  So what does this homesteader do?  Forget about the indoor chores that I had started and had every intention of completing. Squirrel!  Yes, that whip of my head is all it took to begin the arduous task of weeding so that our precious little asparamaguzits (as Sidney called them when she was little), can flourish.


With a good chunk of that task done, I picked some tender spears and headed back to the house.  My weeding senses heightened, and a sudden sense of awe at how our property has transformed in the last 48 hours, led me to noticing that my weeding tasks have only just begun.  I think the herb bed is next.  Oh, and honey,  I don't think we're going to be able to stall switching from the snow blower to the mower deck.  The grass is already shin high!


Asparagus and strawberries, tasty companions together, the garden bounty has only just begun!  To check out how the garden progresses this year check out the Back to the Garden tab,  I just began this years first updates!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Interesting Scenes


It's funny how things catch your eye, then you become curious about the story.  You know the feeling.  Like seeing a pair of tennis shoes slung around a telephone line, or a single shoe in the middle of the street.  Who did they belong to and why are they there.  I know, a little off the wall.

The last couple of weeks I have driven past the pictured scene and just been fascinated.  This could be due to the fact that I am always looking for new types of shots for my photography group, or just that the spring like weather has sharpened my senses and made me more observant to what's around me.

I wonder if the lay out is intentional or a happy coincidence.  It almost looks like the two horses on the sides are emerging out of the ground.  Mom, Dad and foal playing among the little purple violets and greening grass.  Hmnm, with the camper?  Oh the places they'll go!

The next time you are out and about, start to really take notice of the interesting scenes around you and imagine what stories they promise.  Happy Friday!


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

A Little Bit Of Star Dust

19 Years
Nineteen years ago, I was swept off my feet and began an amazing journey. Fourteen years ago today I was fortunate enough to marry that man who continues to sweep me off of my feet daily. 

 "The true harvest of my daily life is somewhat as intangible and indescribable as the tints of morning or evening. It is a little star dust caught, a segment of the rainbow which I have clutched." 
Henry David Thoreau~Walden 

To my little bit of star dust, happy Anniversary, old fool.

Monday, March 19, 2012

And The Kale Has Returned

 What is this?  Just when we dream at night of sowing seeds, we receive a week of unseasonably warm weather, and the extended forecast promises more of the same.  Not that it will not change, but after this amazingly warm winter, I allow myself to grin in contemplation. 

We spent a little time weeding in the garden tonight.  Yes weeding!  It is hard to believe.  Even harder?  Well the last minute greens that we harvested, late last fall, down to their stumps and left in the ground to deal with during our spring preparations......They. Are. All. Growing. Again!

So though I have not voiced it, in fear of being a jinx to myself.....I declare this garden season open!!  Yes, yes, we may get an errant March snow, but it promises to melt immediately and I'm OK with that!  I am so happy that the spontaneous greens have been re-awakened, and the kale has returned!
 Kale Returning


Salad Greens & Spinach 
Rhubarb Crowning

Friday, March 16, 2012

Springing The Chickens


Nothing does my heart better than to give the little specialty chickens their access back to the outdoor tractor again.  This morning was Spring moving day for Topaz, Chanticleer, and our little D'uccle hen whose name escapes me at the moment (I will have to wait till Sid gets home from school for that one :) 

We are in the process of scoping out which beds to set our first salad greens, leeks, and radishes to seed in.  No worries about spinach, it over-wintered and is thriving!  Since we can't rely on this amazing weather not being interrupted by a little jack frost, we are going to order two high tunnels for beds that we will attempt all season gardening in. 

The garlic is managing to push it's way through all of the heavy straw that we had piled on it's winter resting place and it looks to be strong and healthy.  

I find the sun's higher location in the sky and the music of frogs, yes they're out already, songbirds, and roosters all around to be amazingly energizing and relaxing at the same time.  I'm looking forward to a weekend of 4-h, sunshine, soccer, and gardening! Happy Friday!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Vapor Trails

74:366 Vapor Trail
It is hard to believe that it is the middle of March already.  Our amazingly mild winter seems to be melding into a beautiful spring.  Today we are a balmy seventy eight degrees, and stepping outside to walk the homestead, catching glimpses of robins abundantly returning, and the smell of bonfires and bbq's wafting around me, lifted my soul high on the balmy breeze.  The last two weeks seem to have flown by in a whirlwind of emotion and activity.  When I looked up last night and saw the vapor trail in the sky, the final reminants of the past few weeks melted away and I began to focus more on the excitement of the upcoming garden season, and reflect on a few tidbits that made me smile.

::  In the car yesterday, Charles mentioned the chess club.  I told him that his Uncle Billy played on a chess team when he wasn't much older than him.  To which Charles informed me that he would be interested, except they meet during recess, and that would interfere with his outdoor gaming.  Then after a minute of reflection he said...'mama, I'd love to be in a chess piece, then I could hop around to move on the board.'  Gotta love an active boys imagination!

::  Joining the new book club, has led me to a flurry of reading.  I have been searching out Downton-esque books and found The American Heiress to be a great read.  Craving more, my mom recommended The Buccaneers by Edith Wharton, and that too was enjoyable.  I am off to book club tonight, and will read our next selection (The Art of Fielding) first, before I again indulge in turn of the century Britain.

::  We just received our wine club vino, a great gift we received from my folks at Christmas, and such a treat to look forward to!

::  On the food front, we tried the now very popular (at least on facebook) cauliflower pizza crust.  It was great!  The kids didn't even know we'd done something sneaky :)  The one change that we will make going forward is to use a regular cookie sheet.  The pizza stone just didn't cut it! 

::  If you haven't tried it and have access to La Croix sparkling waters......RUN to the store and pick up the coconut flavor.  It is fantastic, and I think that I will be seriously stocking up on it!  I can imagine it will be fantastic with future Spring cordials!

What little tidbits have made you smile so far this week?

Friday, March 9, 2012

Re-Grouped


After a week of emotional ups and downs, we disappeared for a couple of days this week to Lake Geneva.  We were able to take advantage of a great mid-week special at the Grand Geneva Resort and Spa.  Two days and two nights of non-stop activities for the kids and R & R for mom and dad.  It was just what this families collective soul needed to re-group.  We were thrilled to find such a gem so close to us and hope to make another get away over the summer when the outdoor activities are in abundance.   We are getting ready to spring forward and are taking that opportunity inventory our seeds,  pour over catalogs,  and put a farm bag 2012 game plan together.  Happy Friday!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Saturday, March 3, 2012

To Everything A Season


For the last couple of days I have been in California, having traveled home for the celebration of my grandmother's life. After the services yesterday and reviewing of pictures today, it struck me how perfectly representative of life this weekend is. Flashes of memories coupled with laughter and tears, re-connections, the life energy of children running and climbing on the adults who in some cases saw each other last as children themselves. I had forgotten how large our family is, and how family, regardless of time is utterly connected. From our patriarch in mourning after almost 73 years of marriage, to the newly walking, to the bride to be, this weekend is a perfect representation of the circle of life.

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