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Quote of the Day: Sparrow

April 12th, 2015

The earth is designed with four seasons – at least in the higher latitudes – one of birth, one of florescence, one of harvest, one of contemplation. Despite war, and acts of ruthlessness, nature preserves her subtle intent.

Poet Sparrow – in the Sun December 2001

snowdrops 2
It is the season of birth here in Maine, finally, it is here. The maple trees have pretty much stopped producing sap, the snowdrops are coming up, the apple buds are swelling. Spring has arrived!

What’s your favorite season?

Friday Favorite: Meeting Farmers

April 10th, 2015

The best part about sourcing your food locally is meeting the farmers who grow it. The community of people who love animals and love to garden is a great one to infuse yourself into. Yesterday I met Joss at Over the Moon farm to pick up a tom turkey for my poor lonely turkey hen.
farm 3
farm 1
She gave me a tour of her small farm. One of her goats had just kidded an hour before I arrived, the cow and many other goats were due any day now. There was a beautiful blind cow named Candy that she told me all about. She’s the companion cow for her dairy cow. She had wonderful stories to tell of how the sighted cow calls for the blind cow when she gets too far away and doesn’t know her surroundings.
farm 2
farm 4
There were muscovy ducks, guinea fowl, turkeys, geese, chickens, sheep, goats, cows, and a horse on her farm. Along with dogs and cats of course. We chatted for over and hour about all kinds of things.

Are you familiar with any farmers in your area?

The Incredible Egg

April 9th, 2015

Most mornings I have eggs for breakfast. I eat them poached, fried, scrambled, baked into frittatas, and pretty much any other way I can think to fix them. Now that all the ducks are laying I often eat an egg from each type of bird. Muscovy eggs are really big, more like goose eggs than ducks. You can see how big the yolk is on the top egg.
eggs
On the right you can see a chicken egg and on the bottom there’s an Ancona duck egg. They’re all delicious, but I will eat choose duck eggs over chicken eggs if you have them. I still haven’t eaten the turkey egg from Sunday, perhaps I’ll crack that open later this morning. I find that the different types of eggs can taste a little different and sometimes you can tell the difference between eggs from different birds.

Have you ever eaten duck/goose/turkey eggs?

Finally

April 8th, 2015

I mentioned a few months ago that we purchased new living room furniture. Our old pieces are old, and falling apart. After searching and waiting for a sale, we ordered furniture back at the beginning of January. We waited, and waited, and they finally called to schedule a delivery.
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Unfortunately the snowbanks were so high there was no way a big truck was going to make it up our driveway, let alone be able to turn around at the top. So I delayed the delivery for a month hoping the snow would be gone and mud season would be over.
new furniture (1)
The snow melted just in time, but the driveway was super muddy. Thankfully, the truck made it up without much trouble and our furniture was delivered. The cats are already camped out on it, so I guess it’s cat approved.

Anything exciting happening in your household this week?

Soil Blocking

April 7th, 2015

Now that I have more rugged seed trays I started making soil blocks to see how they compare to the other seed starting trays/methods I’ve tried. I’m always excited to try new things, sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t. I’ve tried soil block a few years in the past without much success. This year I finally go the hang of it. I’ve never had my potting soil wet enough.
soilbocks 1
soilbocks 2
The next batch of seed I start I will also seed a plastic tray at the same time with the same variety so I can monitor them throughout the season. Soil block are supposed to produce seedlings that don’t get as much of a shock when transplanted because of the air pruning of the roots. The only way to know for sure is to try both methods at once. I’ll keep you posted on my findings.

Are you doing any fun gardening experiments this year?

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but just recently moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine.

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