Hello!! How are you? Happy springtime!
Long time no blog hey. Possibly the longest time since this blog began, possibly too long for me to even remember where we've been and what we've been doing. But that's OK, I'm here now with twenty minutes before I have to go and pick up the girls from school, and that's all that matter's right.
So a little while ago the clouds finally parted, the sun came out and we've been busy bees in the garden, in the kitchen, on the farm, at school and everywhere else in between - ever since. I've barely opened my computer in weeks. But I have been taking photos here and there and so I thought I'd just catch you up quickly on some of the highlights.
We've been picking daffodils. Always one of the very first signs of spring around here.
One sunny day Miss Pepper woke up very early and wrote a list of everything she wanted to do that day. It looked like comic strip with a drawing of her doing the thing and a description underneath. Pick a basketful of daffodils was the very first thing on that list. So we did. And now we have jars full of yellow happy flowers throughout the house.
I'm so excited that spring is finally here. Last night it occurred to me that I've now survived 14 Daylesford winters. That is a lot of very cold, dark months and I am so relieved to see the back of this past one. Phew!
I'm reading another Miss Mogantosh book suggestion.
It's interesting to read a book that is so similar to the one I always thought I might write. Leaving the city for a life of organic farming, the steepest learning curves, the never-ending jobs lists, the dirt and mud, the cost of things, the joys of farming, the taste of food grown with love, the interesting characters along the way, the live-stock and dead-stock, the love of a farmer boy...it's all there. But in this case it's in America with the added bonuses of real deep snow, encounters with the Amish, maple syrup and draught horses.
Our stories are so similar and yet vastly different. I'm really enjoying Kirstin's tale and bookmarking so many bits to chat with my own farmer boy about when I get the chance.
I'm still loving my wool craft classes at the girls' school.
I've been thinking a lot about holding some workshops here on our farm over the warmer months, teaching, making and sharing. I love the thought of passing on the knowledge and skills that we have to people who don't necessarily live the same sort of life as we do.
We've been making our coffee on a little burner out in the paddock in the sunshine, eating snacks of dried nuts and fruit and knitting a few rows here and there. Ahhhhhh there's nothing quite like the feeling of breaking after a hard morning's work, sitting with the sun warm on our backs, counting how many different bird songs we can hear, while sipping sweet cardamon coffee.
I worked out that every Saturday for the past few Saturdays, I've cast off a sock and cast on another sock. Last Saturday I finally finished Miss Indi's fairy bread socks and she loves them! She actually took them off me and wore them straight away!! It has been a long time since my teenager has worn anything I have handmade for her and seeing her love those socks as much as I loved knitting them for her was the biggest buzz ever. Hooray!!
Socks ravelled here.
That same Saturday I cast on a pair of socks for my farmer boy.
A few weeks ago he was on a boy's only trip to Melbourne when he popped into a wool shop, asked for a ball of sock yarn that would be knitted on size two needles with graduating colour and chose this. Amazing right?!
I could hardly wait to cast them on.
I should probably mention that when our local craft shop didn't stock the one meter long, size two circular needle I'd need for knitting two socks at the same time, I was forced to shop online and by accident lost my web-shopping virginity on these beauties.
I bought them from Tangled Yarns who had the best customer service and I can highly recommend.
I always thought that I needed to actually squish the yarn myself before buying, but I've been proven wrong. There is something so exciting about getting a parcel of delicious wool in the mail, it's almost like a present. I'm pretty sure I'll be online buying again before too long.
Of course we've been taking advantage of the warm, windless days by spending time in the kitchen garden, the market gardens and the orchards weeding, forking, tidying, planting and getting ready for the growing season.
And we've been planting bucket-loads of this gorgeous looking mix of Burrum Biodynamics green manure seeds. Giving back to the soil that gives so much to us.
And that brings us up to now, to this week when the weather has closed in and is cold and wintry again. At other times this might have made me miserable but instead I'm feeling glad for the opportunity to slow down for a bit, to catch up on some inside jobs and for the rain that is watering in the seeds and hopefully filling up the dams and water tanks before summer. It feels like a big, deep breath.
So tell me, if you feel like it, what you've been busy with. What you're making and baking and growing and reading. I'd love to know.
Be well my friends, I hope your shoulders feel strong enough to take on your load.