Saturday, March 18, 2017

Snow Days in March.

Snow days in March really are not unusual.  It was the 60+ degree weather in February that was concerning.  All of the flowers and trees began waking up prematurely, so when the temperatures dropped back down to normal march temps all the plants that had woken up were affected.  

These are the peach tree flower buds covered in ice. The blueberries look very similar.  i do not yet know if we'll be getting any fruit this year.  My daffodils froze solid. We had lows of 12 degrees, maybe colder and then freezing rain on top of it.  

Although ever year i get a picture of snow on my daffodils, this year they did not recover. The flowers got too cold and froze.  My daylily plants also froze and turned into piles of soft dead foliage, so i'm not sure whether they will recover or not. i've never had a year without daylilies. 

i brought all my seed trays that were in the greenhouse inside, as i knew they would not survive if i left them out.  

This was the scene inside. We all stayed warm around the fire, and enjoyed the quiet of winter that we seemed to have missed during January and February when the temps were so mild.  Thought i've never been a winter person, i still need a week or two of hibernating and slowing down and embracing the season.  i feel like i missed that this year.

i usually spend the winter cooking and baking, but this year i spent more time in the glass shop than i did in the kitchen. The glass shop is not heated though, and with the temperatures as cold as they have been it was just too cold for me to work. So i took the time to use up an extra gallon of milk we had.  i made a batch of mozzarella, fresh butter and buttermilk, used the whey to make ricotta and had a full cup of fresh cream left over which i used to make creamy feta and roasted red pepper fettuccine.

The buttermilk was turned into pancakes, i used the ricotta and about half of the mozzarella to make stuffed shell and then used the rest to make home made pizza and quiche. i've been making a lot of quiche these days, as my hens are really starting to lay. 

i'm getting some really gorgeous egg colors too. Despite my attempts at breeding for colors (which failed) nature did an excellent job all on her own. These colors are the result of barnyard mix, and  not any intended breeding. The pink comes from a heavy 'bloom' over a brown egg.  

My new chicks are growing fast. They are 3 week old now and are getting lots of feathers. We moved them into a larger pen, and added a roost and they really seem to love it.  

So far our march has been rather uneventful. We are all eagerly awaiting spring, and hoping that the weird weather settles down and hasn't already caused irreversible damage to all the fruit blossoms that were just beginning to open.  i have seedling started in the greenhouse and am trying to get sweet potatoes to grow their starts. Trying not to get ahead of myself, and embrace the cold days the best that i can. 

I am grateful for the silence of winter mornings, for the beauty and wonder of the glint of sunlight in frost melting to dew, for the early-riser's peaceful solitude that sets a mood of thankfulness, hope, and calm for the dawning day. ~Terri Guillemets


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