oh spring….really

i was having bad thoughts. really bad thoughts. strong words like hate came forth from my mouthwhat was i thinking of, you ask, that elicited such awfulness?

spring. yes spring.

this is the season that farmers are supposed to love. one would suppose the greening hopeful life giving time of year would inspire me to say something positive. spring is about renewal and rebirth and energy and here i am caught saying things such as “i hate spring”

i mean really.



just as i had caught myself again muttering under my breath i get this email from a friend trying to make contact in the emerging busyness that is engulfing me and my family. guess what? check out what she wrote:

Last year during this time, you were saying you hate spring – which cracked me up – not many folks brave that statement

OK, phew, puts this in perspective, it is an annual event. time to write about it. let’s sort out these feelings and maybe help some other farmer or farmwife out there feel a bit better about cursing march.


spring is a tough time. we are motivated to get a jump on the big busy season that creeps closer. the days lengthen and warming trends draw the family out of doors. spring is also chilly. our short winters haven’t allowed me to finish all i set out to do in the”off season” .i can still linger quite comfortably near the fire. of course, spring is wet, so wet. really wet. it is a tough time to really do anything. some years we are lucky enough to get a dry spell and get plants out there then comes a down pour and drowns them out. get a head start on tender crops and get wiped out with a late last hard frost (and yes, despite the balmy 60 degrees we saw today, many more frosts are in our future, for sure)

i suppose my point is, spring is a daily, ongoing battle between what you want to do and what is realistic to do. spring is a dance between the increasing energy to engage in outdoor physical work and the lingering desire to stay close to the woodstove. spring is a transition. despite all of the hope for the season ahead, even with the promise of greener pastures and the taste for the salads to come, transitions are painful.


today was all the glory spring can be. the perfect day to write about this. i hung the laundry out on the line instead of on the rack by the wood stove. the children frolicked happily in the mud which is not nearly as nasty when the sun shines. it was a great moment in the up and down, high and low, stop and go season that is spring. if nothing else, despite my personal seasonal mood swings, the ducks are consistently, extremely happy!





Winter’s tight grip is loosening.  Bitter cold is making way for warm sun.  The thick ice is turning into mud.  Fun, delicious, mud.mud

The winter was so intense, it laid low a lot of plants that usual remain standing.  Now that the days are growing longer and warmer, we’re looking more closely to see what has held on.  There is life.  Small, but strong.chamomile

All this action has stirred our urge to plant.  It’s just a start, but two trays of onions sit warming to sprout in a south-facing window.onion

Birds of all shapes and sizes are busy, moving and making homes.  The chickens are laying more eggs.  Cranes fly north now.  Turkeys strut and gobble.

The sandbags that we used to hold down the row covering had been frozen to the ground.  This week, the wind ripped the remay out from under them and uncovered what’s left of our kale and collards.kale

There is just enough Rainbow Lacinato kale to make a quiche.  For this, we are thankful.

right now: around the house

If you like to be outdoors in the springtime, you probably know about mud.  If you have children who like to be outdoors in the springtime, you DEFINITELY know about mud.


Muddy clothes make me understand the beauty of a washboard for doing laundry.  But I don’t have one.  I also don’t have time this week to go down to the creek and do pre-wash the old fashioned way.

I have a small washing machine that must last for a looooong time.  It would be unwise to put it through this much mud.

Instead, I have the jet setting of a garden hose.  And I recommend it highly.


The jet setting sends mud back where it belongs – the ground.


All ready to wash.


Good as new.  Or close enough.