Sunday, January 30, 2011

pause and consider

this morning the trees were glazed in white, coated as they were with freshly fallen snow. winter sometimes brings a stillness you can't find in other seasons. it's a refuge, this silence, a time of pause and consideration.

there's been a lot here at my semi-farm lately of the pause and consideration variety. this weekend, we've paused and considered not only what seeds to order so we can start them soon (hopeful for an early spring), but also the chicken coop. we've narrowed down the seed varieties to a healthy mix of all we love to eat, including several varieties of heirloom tomatoes, a few assorted peppers, both hot and sweet, cucumbers, carrots, blue potatoes, some broccoli, cauliflower and beans for the garden. the herbs will be planted in a bed near the house and the lettuces in containers on the patio, where we can move them out of the heat, remember to water them regularly and easily harvest them several times a day without walking far into the yard. it's going to be a technicolor garden for sure, but one that is fun, vibrant and packed full of nutrients. we're also planning on an herb garden in beds near the house and an experiment with quinoa, which we can use to make some damn good (and healthy) tabbouleh. mmm. yummy.

the chicken coop i'm not sure we are going to be building, due to time constraints. we'll still have chickens, but we have limited tools and i'm not sure we can coordinate the building process with my dad around three separate full time jobs, two part time ones, childcare and his home improvement projects. it is a lot to juggle since my schedule varies quite a bit. i've reached out to a few companies to see if they would sponsor us, but if i can;t find any takers (and i'm doubtful i will), we will most likely order this model:

the entire back comes off, so it should be a lot less cumbersome to clean than other chicken tractors or small coops you can't walk inside. the warehouse for this place is only roughly an hour and a half from here so i could potentially pick it up and not have to pay shipping. if anyone who has chickens would share their thoughts, i'd be appreciative of it for sure.
there is so much to do that i'm finished with pausing and am considering getting started~ just a few more weeks until seed starting (according to the farmer's almanac around march 8th). cabin fever is setting in and i am ready to get on with this business of making food.
it's tough not to wish away the remaining days of silent winter with dreams of spring. if only there was sunlight. then it might be easier to bear the last few weeks.

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