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Another winter is exiting in a flurry of mud and fluxuating temperatures. It seems a very long time since my last post. Life on the farm always has its ups and downs. We lost a few pigs this winter and it’s always sad. And, today, we saw the fox that has been picking off our free ranging chickens. It’s one of the perils of free range: chickens are attractive prey to lots of wildlife. We are too soft hearted to catch and kill the fox so we may see about relocation possibilities. Meanwhile, we’re going to close the chicken gate to keep them in the hen yard during the day. They won’t be happy, but they will be protected. We are getting LOTS of eggs after having something of a drought last fall.
Bob got the wood-burning stove online in the den so we have been able to expand beyond the library. It’s lovely to have a “hang out” room and it’s right next to the kitchen, which makes it cozy as well.
We’ve also been enjoying the fruit of our bounty. The last blog post I wrote described all the preserving that was going on. Now, we are digging into those bags and jars to enjoy pear and apple sauce, green beans, tomato sauce, and more. We enjoyed eggplant parmesan yesterday and it was delicious enough that I will do it again: I cooked and froze the breaded slices of eggplant and yesterday made a big pot of homemade tomato sauce that included kale and basil from the freezer and a splash of home grown honey. I have to admit that I still get excited about using our own honey!
On the plus side, my hives seemed to have survived another winter. There was lots of bee activity at both hives yesterday. I fed them two ro three times this winter and may do a light syrup to get them through the next few weeks if they need it. But the peach trees are already blossoming and the daffodils are in bloom so they will be foraging soon. I need to swap out some hive boxes that are getting rotted so today’s job is putting together some new deep boxes I bought. A little glue, a few nails and then a coat of paint.
Bob’s seedlings are doing well and I am already imagining fresh greens in the next few weeks. The flower garden down front is on the list for a major overhaul so I’ll probably put a few things in pots today. We need to clean up the sight line for the driveway and just generally reorganize.
For your viewing pleasure, yesterday’s photos: