I only like difficult hikes, so great!
My beautiful sister Stephanie!
Alpine, best baby ever!
It sure has been a long long time since I have ventured to write. A friend on the board of the Southern Adirondack Beekeepers Association mentioned visiting my site today while we chatted at the annual seminar and I thought, "Wow. I have abandoned my poor little blog." SO, I decided to post a few photos of our recent winter trip to Colorado and Utah to visit with my sister, brother in-law and nephew and catch up.
Other than that trip, the winter was quiet and calm. No snow. Warmish overall. Lots of knitting- a sweater for Alpine, a sweater for me, a felted yoga mat bag, knickers for Alpine and a hat here or there. Yoga. A little stint of running, followed by an injury while mountain biking on the Slickrock Trail in Moab which caused me to take a month or so off running. Now I have a greenhouse full of seedlings, greens and spinach. We are getting the farm in order, fixing our tiller, adding a 2 layer blanket of poop and woodash to everything living, cutting back all the dead perennials, trimming the orchard, getting rid of our fist year's batch of 50 shiitake logs, moving the new batch in for its turn, and looking forward to the arrival of a real spring. We ordered 24 new baby chicks to arrive in April. I am seriously becoming the chicken lady. I can't seem to get rid of my old chickens. Many are 5 years old now, but still laying occasionally and loving life. We just experienced record-breaking temps in the 80s for 4 days in a row which caused our buds in the orchard to swell, then a night in the teens. We see lots of plum, peach, cherry and pear buds. We hope for some first time fruit this year from the young trees, now in their 7th years? This freakish spring weather is really making it difficult to grow nice cold-loving crops like peas and spinach. I am adapting though. We are pleased that both our hives made it through winter, so far. Many hives starve in the early spring, but we know they have been taking in maple pollen, so are queen right. We have been feeding them in hopes of building them up. After a great day of learning at the SABA seminar, my mind is full of beekeeping tricks and images. Images of winter are transformed instantly into those of spring and summer.
Winter 2012, just a wee bit of snow.
Work is great. I love the kids and receive from them back everything I give, which is a lot. We have planted seeds and learned about bees and recycling and magnets and wind and shadows and rainbows. In an ideal world, people would just stay 4 years old forever. Such raw emotion, honesty, and bravery in a 4 year old! I have a special friend who I have influenced quite a bit and vice versa who would like to, "Come to the farm to play in the mud." "You will, " I tell her, "when the summer comes." "Why is the summer not coming?" she says. Surely it will.
Chris and I think we are ready to have a baby. Surely, if it is meant to be, it will happen. And what an amazing place to raise a family. For me, it is of the utmost importance that a child of mine be given the opportunity to have their own private world to explore nature. I want them to know of places that human beings have perhaps passed through, but have left wild or allowed to return to their natural state. I want them to learn the secrets of the plants we tend and to know where food comes from. To have a place so lovely, alive, sacred and enchanting, full of the stark realities that exist in the larger world, but safe, protected and well-tended as well. The parts of this place I tend, I want to tend with a gentle hand and teach that tending. But I don't want things to be manicured and unnatural. I want there to be a balance between the farm and the woods so that a small person could instantly be drawn to either for different reasons, but reasons so intrinsically linked that to even explain them or rationalize them would be to give away a secret. I want this place to belong to the heart of a child again. I want a child to look out and be alone with the dragonflies in the sunset and hear the hermit thrush. I want to give them a chance to know both worlds and choose both worlds. I have been so blessed to know both. I hope to be a mother with all the hope a woman could ever muster so I can finally teach what it is all this wandering and farming has taught me.
Summer 2011 Garden from above.