Friday, April 29, 2016

kitchen firsts

The first of the season's asparagus! I go out early every morning to see if some are ready, and so far we're only getting a small handful at a time. I cook them briefly in a little butter, salt, and pepper, and we eat them with breakfast. The kids gobble them up - the spears are so sweet - I wonder if the cooler weather (more snow in store for us this weekend) is sweetening them?

Star bread! This one is a garlic bread, using butter, fresh garlic (grated), and fresh-picked oregano, sage, and terragon from the garden.  

Lemon bars, which satisfied my need to use up a good amount of eggs and my desire for lemon meringue pie, which never seems to turn out quite right.

A burnt and lopsided brioche loaf (this is its good side), which most certainly didn't turn out right. How do you not burn a bread that is over half its weight in butter? The texture on the inside was terrific, though, like a crescent roll!

What's going on in your kitchen these days?

Monday, April 25, 2016


This is Ted. He's a sweet old bunny who was adopted by one of our nieces awhile back. She can't care for him anymore, so she asked if we could take him in. He'll live the rest of his days here with us, nibbling sweet grass and being doted upon by adoring children. I've come to realize that, when we can, saying yes to such opportunities when they arise makes for a very rich and blessed life. Say yes, friends, as much as you're able. 

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

a girl and her chicks

We're having a glorious couple of days here before another round of snow, and all the little ones are enjoying lots of outdoor time. I have a big metal dog crate set up under a blossoming tree just outside our house, where the chicks spend a couple of hours soaking up the sun and pecking at the grass before returning to their brooder. That tree was humming with bees this morning, and our hive did very well this winter. That hive has recently been split!

This girl of mine has always loved babies (of all kinds, in fact!) and the new chickies are no exception. She could sit here tending to them all day, sweet girl.

Friday, April 8, 2016

happy little spring things

The kids and I brought our rocking chairs out to the porch, and we've been spending some time there after breakfast, just watching all the birds and enjoying the earth's waking up. The kids don't sit for long, but I could happily spend hours out there with my knitting! Among all the bids, our geese have returned! We're all looking forward to the baby water fowl we see each year - the ducklings, and hopefully some goslings again.

The garden is waking up, too. I thought I lost the rhubarb to the flooding, but here it is, hardy as ever.

Little spinach is sprouting, along with all the other cold-hardy seeds we planted a few weeks ago.  Oh how we're looking forward to fresh homegrown greens again.

All the other babies here are growing fast, too.  

It's such a joy to watch all this beauty, and sometimes I still can't believe how fortunate I am to be part of it every day. I hope you're surrounded by happy things wherever you are, too. 

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

child time

Oh, these babies - they have their own cycle, perfectly in tune with the natural ways, transcending our self-imposed timelines and deadlines. We grown-ups really have lost touch with that magic, just out of our grasp, always pulled back to our own realities and worries.

It's even so when they're in the womb. And so many amazing things are happening, to the tune of gestational time; an invisible clock that can't be rushed and events that, although going on right inside yourself, you have absolutely no control over. Yet they are completely at one with the natural cycle.

I've been thinking of these things a lot lately, how we order our days, our time here. Perhaps because my oldest will be of "school age" this year. I often waffle between the desire to have no structure whatsoever and then back again to my seemingly innate need for orderliness. I worry about giving my kids just enough structure to help them feel secure without sacrificing too much of their freedom to just be kids. I was such a reserved, serious, mature child that I wonder if I allowed myself to have too much fun, to really experience unbridled joy. How fortunate I feel to see that joy in my own kids, and have a chance at embracing it, if only I could attune myself to their present moment, to their child-time.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Easter, Et cetera

We had a quiet, low-key Easter day this year, dyeing eggs with turmeric and crushed red grapes, and enjoying Easter treats and each other. The weather has been keeping us indoors quite a bit, but luckily we have much to do here; a puppy (look how big she's getting!) to entertain us and chicks in the brooder to care for.

I finished a tea party top for my littlest in a yellow lightweight yarn, for those warmer, but still cool-ish days that are surely coming our way.

This weekend I'm hoping to get the onions and potatoes all planted out. Before the storms, we seeded carrots, radishes, spinach, lettuce, peas, and mustard greens in the garden beds, and today I spied some seedlings popping up! How wonderful, the promise of spring.     
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