Sunday, April 23, 2017

Of Spring I Sing!


 Spring has sprung like crazy. So many things I need to write about to catch up on the past month (new intern and gardener, loss of our beloved bovine LaFonda, ReBlossom Festival, broken rib, Rog's beautiful new barn deck, to mention only a few things in the past couple weeks.)  But for now, I will just post  a few pics from my walk around the farm this evening after everyone packed up  and returned home from the ReBlossom festival. What a glorious weekend and evening. We ate our first few spears of asparagus of the year for supper; it grows adjacent to these pretty daffodils.
When I headed out for my walk tonight,  Jitter was standing atop the tall compost pile, staring longingly at the green grass on the other side of the fence, so I decided to let her in for a bit. (It has been so wet and muddy, I had been worried she would destroy the pasture with her hooves, so I made her stay in the sacrifice pasture until now.) She did a happy jig and a few leaps and  pirouettes, and then settled down to noisy, blissful munching.
The Willys looks like it has a load of magnolia blooms in the bed. About every sixth person attending ReBlossom asked me what this glorious, fragrant  little tree was, and then expressed astonishment  that any magnolias grow in Minnesota.
 Happy Moji. I was wearing this same silly grin all weekend.
The honeyberries we planted last year are covered in blossoms.  A few berries coming this year, I hope?

 Lilacs are almost ready to  burst into bloom.
The little pond is encircled by daffodils and has a healthy population of  amorous, melodious toads and frogs.

I cannot  begin to describe how absolutely overjoyed I am by spring. :) My favorite time of year.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

The Farm in the Fog

It's been a while since I have had time or motivation to go out and take photos for the blog--it has been so dreary and muddy.  Not that I really have time today, but it was such a beautiful, foggy morning I couldn't resist. Chickens breaking fast.
The garden awaits! Still too wet to do anything in there, but it is supposed to get to 60 degrees today, so it won't be long! Rhubarb, garlic and allium are up a couple inches.
The edges of the little pond have melted. Yesterday the ducks were happily swimming circles around the big iceberg in the center of the pond. This morning when I walked  down to take this photo I scared up a pair of wild mallards swimming. After today's predicted warmth, I bet the ice will be totally gone by tonight.
Daffodils are coming up all around the perimeter of the pond. I don't know how they survive in that heavy clay but  this is their third year and  they keep expanding.
The big rock--I have intentions of  planting so many more wild flowers here this spring.
From the hill of the septic mound. This is the view the big bison sculpture will have when he gets moved here.
A couple more images of the farm buildings in the fog.



Now, off to work!!

Monday, February 20, 2017

Weirdly Warm Winter Weekend

This was a crazy warm weekend, with temps 40 degrees above normal. There's just one thing to do to when it gets that warm...clean the chicken coop! Well, not JUST one thing -- we also  took down the rest of the holiday lights, cut up and hauled wood, cleaned up dog poops, and power washed the patio. 
The sap started running, so we hung some buckets and  boiled down a bit of maple syrup.
 The guineas raced gleefully around the farm.
The chickens played king of the compost pile and scratched around in the  mud.
Jitterbug lounged in the sun atop the  compost pile.
 Oops,  LaFonda wanted to star in that photo.
Luna also soaked up the sun, sprawled across the top step.
Today felt just as warm as yesterday, but it rained all day. By chore time this evening, most of the snow had disappeared and the pasture looked like it  was actually starting to green up!
The farmyard was mostly mud, but the ducks were enjoying it.
The guineas and chickens were  soggy and bedraggled, but  nevertheless chose to be out in the rain all day.
Fog began forming in the prairie and it became quiet and mystical.
We are forecast to have a couple more days of this balmy weather, and then wonter will return Thursday with cold  temps and  possibly a foot of snow.
I think all of us who do not have the luxury of escaping to a warm, sunny getaway are appreciating this respite from winter this year!


Thursday, February 2, 2017

Disco, Inferno


Disco Ball delivery
"The Winter of Our Disco Tent"

A cold mid-January night - the perfect time to hold a disco party in the greenhouse!
First, we had to find a disco ball. I ended up ordering one on line (complete with motor for spinning and lights.) It arrived a couple days later and when opened the box, it threw sparkles everywhere!

We created dozens of ice luminaries in balloons (balloominaries!) to line the driveway and path to the greenhouse.

Our farm assistant, Ruth, found us some color-changing stage lighting that enhanced the discotheque experience. Our friends, Laurel, Darin and Pat co-hosted the party, so they took over the food and music. Darin created an awesome dance track! We also had an open stage set, including a parody "Stayin Alive in Minnesota" song and Darin's  soliloquy from Shakespeare's Richard III reading, "Now is the winter of our discontent"
We invited guests to contribute their spent trees for a Burning of the Christmas Trees.
What a beautiful night--and so much fun! 
My camera was not working that night, so a huge thanks to Ruth for supplying most of these photos and the video clips.

video
video
video

Stayin' Alive in Minnesota (lyrics by R. Nelson)


Well you can tell by the way I blow this snow
It's a great big drift and it's got to go.
Hands are cold, and my woman's warm. We get to together
In a big snowstorm.
And if our pipes start to freeze
We will burn our Christmas trees.
We will try to understand
The windchill factor's effect on man
 
Maybe you’re a skater and you have a radiator
You're stayin' alive, stayin' alive
When the ice is breakin' and everybody shakin'
And we're stayin' alive, stayin' alive
Ah, ha, ha, ha, stayin' alive, stayin' alive
Ah, ha, ha, ha, stayin' alive.
 
Well now the temp is low and the moon is high
If I wear my parka I might get by.
Cleats of steel on my sorrel boots
I'm a dancin' man and I just can't lose.
You know it's all right. It's OK.
But I'd rather be in San Jose.
We will try to understand
The windchill factor's effect on man
 
Maybe you’re a skater and you have a radiator
You're stayin' alive, stayin' alive
When the ice is breakin' and everybody shakin'
And we're stayin' alive, stayin' alive
Ah, ha, ha, ha, stayin' alive, stayin' alive
Ah, ha, ha, ha, stayin' alive.
 
I built this snowman. Somebody help me
Somebody help me with the head
I built this snowman, somebody help me with the head
Stayin' alive.
 
Well you can tell by the way I blow this snow
It's a great big drift and it's got to go.
Hands are cold, and my woman's warm. We get to together
In a big snowstorm.
And if our pipes start to freeze
We will burn our Christmas trees.
We will try to understand
The windchill factor's effect on man