Monday, March 28, 2011

Sad Face

The last of the root cellar taters.


Saturday, March 26, 2011

An aside

Awhile ago a fellow blogger, the lovely Tammy from T. Cupp Miniatures and Family Farm, asked me to write something about our farming exploits.  Here is the result, posted on her site.  I highly recommend Tammy's blogs, and not because of my essay--she has wonderful recipes and her cows are beautiful.  Ah, beautiful beautiful cows.  Someday ...


Oh my, it's been awhile.  A long while.  I don't have any good excuse either, other than I think the winter drabs and drolls have hit me.  Much like everyone else in my corner of the world, I'm sure.  This has been one of the top five snowiest winters on record for Minnesota, and I'm getting a bit tired of the white stuff. 

I was doing okay up until early March when the plague descended upon our household.  And it hasn't let up yet.  Over the last three weeks we've had just one day where all of our kids went to school together.  It seems to cycle through our kids on a continual loop.  Different symptoms, but the same overall funkitude. Benjimouse is the most recent victim, and is just getting over his most recent bout of ick.

Last week we had temps in the upper 30s and low 40s, bringing about a massive melt.  There is a real fear of major flooding for our area, mainly south along the Minnesota River and North along the Red River.  Fortunately our house is on high prairie ground, so the only issues we will deal with is a damp basement and a small, yet deceptively deep lake in our yard.  Unfortunately this lake lies between the house and the barn/coop, making animal chores a cold squishy delight.

The animals are handling the weather well.  The barn is dry and sturdy, and we've still got plenty of feed.  They goats are looking pretty scraggly, though.

I often wonder if I should invest in some of those 'goat coats' to try to keep their mohair a bit nicer over the winter.  Or I could try to make my own, now that my sewing machine skills are much improved.

So improved, actually, that I sewed my first zipper a few weeks ago, on Graham's winter coat.  It's not pretty, but it works.  Yeah me!   Way to go me!

It's also tree-tapping time.  I tapped trees last week, and the flow has been slow so far.  We had a winter storm Wednesday which knocked my buckets and hoses around, losing several days' worth of sap.  My syruping efforts this year are only half-hearted, anyway.

On a brighter note, we have had a great number of visitors and house guests over the past month, not the least of whom were my cousins from London, Ontario. 

The kids had a marvelous time playing together, and I had a marvelous time reconnecting with my Canadian cousins.  It is such a shame we live so far apart, they are so dear to me.

You'll notice that Number One Son is missing from this picture.  He was the sickie du jour at that point, zonked out on the couch with the flu.

Hubby is now the official bread-baker, and we are semi-sworn off store-bought loaves for the foreseeable future.  At $3.29 a loaf, making your own really is a no-brainer.  Especially when you look at the ingredient list on some of those store packages. 

Last but certainly not least, I have finally started some seeds.  Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, cabbage, eggplant, lettuce, spinach and chard.  Next week I'll start another round of veges, peppers and tomatoes and flowers and such.  Although it might not look like it or feel like it, I know that spring coming and I need to get my rear in gear.  Lots of things to prepare for, like seedlings, tilling, chicks, fencing, etc. 

Even if I am not quite prepared for spring, I am most definitely ready for it.