Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Cherry blossom avalanche, bathing suits in April, and a little tour of our homestead

I am surrounded by so much beauty every day that sometimes I feel like my heart will burst wide open. For example, this: 

On a walk in Newhalem, a tiny nearby town just before heading up the Cascade Mountain Pass, an avalanche of cherry blossoms made us so giddy we just HAD to cover ourselves in blossoms.

You know what I mean? Don't you just want to throw yourself in the middle of the road and roll in these blossoms? We sure did. Kids and grown-ups alike, and I'm still pulling cherry blossom petals out of my ears and nostrils hours later.

Temperatures have hovered at 70 degrees F for the past few days. My daughter and her friend wore their bathing suits at the river and even jumped into the ice cold water without screaming (too loudly).

Bathing suits on April 1st - and it's not an April Fool's joke! Crazy! But I'm not complaining!

Talking of beauty (cherry blossoms and little girls), let me show you around our homestead a little. Changes are happening every single day: garlic inching its way out of the soil, blossoms opening, mama goats getting more pregnant. Maybe not more pregnant, because you either are pregnant or not, but definitely bigger-bellied.

Here's what we call the goat shed, which houses the goats, feed, hay, a feral cat, mice, and lots of miscellaneous clutter. Steve built it with reclaimed lumber and recycled materials, and it has seen its share of abuse use (for example an unfortunate encounter of a baseball with a window pane).

Here is the Fort, which Steve and the boys built. It even has electricity in there, so the boys go out there and crank the tunes. Eva likes to hide in the Fort pretending to be a mermaid with the beautiful mermaid tail/blanket her Grandma knitted her.

Gardening is fully underway. The garlic is thriving, and I direct sowed peas, collards, carrots, beets and chard. Lot of seedlings are waiting to be transplanted into the garden. I'm not in a hurry - I know there still might be frost.

I'm spreading compost (thank you, goat manure!), digging raised beds, and Steve set up our moveable greenhouse.

The critters on the homestead are happy. The ducks are so tame, they eat out of my hand, and the puppy... well, the puppy keeps and eye on them. I don't know if it is because she wants to eat them or their food.

Excess puppy energy gets dispersed by playing with the neighbors' dog, which involves biting ears, tails and noses and chasing each other til they collapse. A tired puppy is a good puppy.

What is blooming and thriving in your neck of the woods?

PS: I got featured on the Women Who Farm website, which is a huge honor. Check it out here on Facebook.


  1. As they say in my old hometown: You clean up real nice! I miss the goat poop but the little make up and earrings are a nice touch! Congrats on the FB recognition. It's about time after, what, a hundred years of back breaking work and dogged persistence!

  2. Nice!!
    And I sit here.... still waiting for spring to show up. Apart from some pockets of ice, the land's pretty much snow and ice free as is the top 5cm of soil.
    Rhubarb is budding and I saw the first tips of garlic I planted last year.... Crocuses are about to flower. Weather's been grey for a while now and we are all desperate for some sun and warmth! We know it is out there somewhere. We had some.....
    But we started building topbar hives today, so there is some progress.

    1. All we've got here is a robust crop of weeds. But I'm taking your advice and using these weeds to amend the soil (well, I'm going to be. We really just moved in and the garage is still full of boxes. I look at Marty and say "where are we going to put all this stuff?") My mom was always full of sayings. For example "Spring has sprung. The grass is riz. I wonder where the flowers is?"

    2. Ron, I'm glad spring is inching its way towards your neck of the woods! Don't lose hope! And about the top bar hives... do they work well for you? After our bee disaster last year, I'm nervous about starting over again...

    3. We are only building them. Bees will move in during june... I hope.
      And I'll make sure the Warré hives I built will be ready to act as swarmtraps.

  3. I love your write-up for Women Who Farm! You're such a wonderful role model for women, not only in the things you do, but the intentions you set. Thank you for the inspiration!

  4. You can feel the excitement in that puppy's posture as he's dying to chase those ducks! How cute!


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