Friday, January 20, 2012

This and That

Stuff is happening here on the Farm, and it's a mix of "this and that".  It's that beautiful season when "life slows" because that is the natural cycle of things.  It is the "rest time".  These days, I am not writing as much, and will be taking some time off.  Here are some updates:
  • Our new camera arrived yesterday (and now we get to read the instructions).  I am eager to develop a special and familiar relationship with the camera, but for now, we are each one staying in our corners just looking at each other.  The battery is juicing up.  I really liked the old camera, but it "quit".  Considering the reviews on the new camera, I think it will be a good fit.
  • We have entered a cold spell.  Winter has finally arrived.  It looks like it could snow, which we would love. We're spending time by the fire in the wood stove.  We put the buffalo robe down and the sheepskins on one of the chairs.  It's time to snuggle up and read.
  • Melanie read to us last night from the book:  How to Be Your Dog's Best Friend:  A Training Manual for Dog Owners. It's by the Monks of New Skete whose monastery is in New York State.  The Monks are well known for their thoughtful and effective methods of training.  The book was loaned to us by Sarah who lives on a farm "down south" from us.  We are in no hurry to get another dog, but that will be coming up soon.  We are reading this to make sure the 3 of us are on the "same page" with training for that new little one who will become part of our family.  Laddie (who passed 3 weeks ago) would like that. Maybe he will even nudge us in the direction of the new companion who is best to join us.
  • We are getting a quarter of Beef from a farmer who lives about an hour from here.  We have been so well satisfied with the Beef and the treatment of the animals of our friends.  But that means we need to make space in the Freezer.  And an organizational program for the Freezer would be nice. Yikes.  Since this came up on the radar, we have been canning chicken and should have enough for into the fall.  We will be canning venison in the next few days.  We have really missed having "canned red meat".  Plus, we took 1 day to clean and do inventory of the big freezer.  Now that was fun.  But it looks and feels so much better now.  And we know exactly what we have, in the big freezer, at least.
  • Richard and Melanie have gotten some "old music" at auction.  I went through the 1st box and found some real treasures.  I could hardly help myself.  I headed straight to the piano to try them out, including "Over the Rainbow", "More", "Swing Low Sweet Chariot", "Sunrise, Sunset", "Ma (He's Making Eyes at Me)", "Oklahoma"...
  • I did some writing on a piece about the Croatian Ladies who were contemporaries of my Grandma Dora.  My intention is that it will be a short piece on the Croatian immigrants who settled in Kirksville.  This is going to take some time and will involve inputs from others.  Soon, I will be sharing some of that on the blog, but it is not ready yet.
  • Since it is colder and since we are in hibernation, we are spending time doing some things that we have not really taken time for before.  Some are so precious to us that we need to figure out how to keep them integrated throughout the year.  They keep us grounded, rested, more peaceful and more settled. We are picking up books to read.  Again, Richard has picked up some old books at auction.  We are reading them and savoring the pieces.  He recently picked up a poetry book by Ethel Jacobson.  It is wonderful.  When we find a treasure, we share it with the family.  I am reading "Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm". I am enjoying time at the piano each day.  I still pause a bit finding the keys, but it is smoother.  In case you missed this, I retired from piano when I was 12 and did not pick it up again until about 18 months ago.  I am surprised at how much I remember but it is awkward and the fingers don't work quite like they used to.  But it is fun and it is indeed peaceful.  And I love those times when I can sing too.  This week we started taking time for meditation, which is so grounding and settling in "stirred up" times.  I am walking, even though it is cold.  Melanie is enjoying her growing relationship with "fibers".  We could write a lot about this one.  Often, the spinning wheel is whirling which makes a lovely background sound.
  • Leah the chicken doesn't have the best crop of feathers.  They are not coming in right after her molt.  Is it a genetic abnomality?  We don't know.  So Melanie made her a sweater.  No, it doesn't have sleeves, and it is not a cardigan.  No, it does not look like Mr. Rogers.  The "sweater" rides on her back much like the chicken capes that Melanie made earlier.  We are not sure if this is going to work out.
  • We are still waiting for the last of the seed catalogs, this one is from Baker Creek.  It should arrive next week and when it does, we will be placing the seed orders.
  • I got the calendar from Stella Natura, which helps us garden "biodynamically".  In the next couple of weeks, I may even be planting some Leek Seeds.  Is this for real?
  • We are continuing to "tidy up" and "settle in". I am really excited that we are getting more pictures hung.  Plus, I am going through boxes and finding spaces in our everyday world for some dear friends (including books). And, I am pleased to report, we are "culling stock".
  • I am finding this is an "inward time" and that feels really good.  So I may not be writing as much and that feels really good.  I hope you are finding some rest space too, dear Reader.  Rest is indeed in the natural cycle of things.

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