Sunday, May 30, 2010

Busy Spring

Days, weeks and now months have flown by in sit com speed, though problems are certainly not resolved as quickly. And we have been busy, very busy.

My mother visited.

I even managed to finish her sweater on time.

And best of all, it fit. Note to self: Don't offer to make a sweater for someone based on a highly modified pattern, when that person lives far away.

My Mom's sweater started with the Minuette pattern and I changed the yarn and the sleeves. I love the way it turned out, but it provided hours of stress as I worried it wouldn't fit my tiny mother. I'm so glad it fits. More glad than I can possibly communicate.

My mother visited right after the Gulf Oil Spill. Praise God the oil hasn't reached us yet.

Several mornings during my Mom's visit, we awoke at dawn and hit the beach before the sun was strong enough to reduce me to a burnt pile of blisters.

We all had a blast.

We brought our breakfasts to the beach and the seagulls did their best to steal it, and often managed.

My Mom and I agreed the one legged seagull appeared to be running a scam. He made you feel so sorry for him that you could not help but share your food. Of course the kids couldn't wait to get into the water and so they happily dropped some of their food.

The kids loved the waves best of all.

Gregory rediscovered the pleasure of body surfing.

And Michael lost all fear of the water.

Gregory was absolutely fearless.

And enjoyed laying down and letting the waves carry him around.

The kids kept going out farther and farther.

And I had to keep calling them back.

Which really interfered with my knitting time.

Though I did manage to get a little sock knitting time in each morning we spent on the beach, which was very nice.

And then the kids would be right back out in the deeper water in no time.

I wouldn't mind so much but Michael can't swim.

And we saw yellow and red flags flying.

Michael also likes to chase seagulls.

And I let him chase them after one of the little terrors stole my breakfast muffin right out of my hand.

We've been processing our meat chickens over the last month. In fact, my mother had the opportunity to experience the origin of her chicken dinners twice during her visit.

We got her to pluck a couple feathers just to say she did it. We are raising turkeys too and they are growing fast.

The garden is all planted.

And the soil in our new house turns out to be not so fertile. I've been cleaning out the chicken coops as much as possible to work on that problem, but there is only so much that can be done in a first year. I'm hoping we can improve soil fertility quickly despite that we are attempting to garden on a slope.

I've had a few things, like the beets, garlic and onions, sort of fizzle, so I buried them under piles of chicken coop bedding.

We have been getting some snap beans and tiny squashes so far.

We've also had a few new potatoes. I'm harvesting them because there is a bad wilt or blight killing the plants. I suspect verticillium wilt and that is bad. Very bad. I'm not really sure what I can do, organically speaking, other than improve my soil as much as possible and raise as healthy plants as possible.

We have plenty of one thing in the garden though.

Why do we always have so many fire ants? I hate those things. We compete for the produce. We had a bit of a dry spell and the ants got right in and attacked the plants for their moisture.

The bees have been very good this year. We have pulled off probably a hundred pounds of honey.

The extractor still wobbles and we still need to find a better solution than Kurt flinging himself on it.

We are also harvesting wax and will need to figure out what to do with it.

I would like to grow some herbs and make some salves. I still need to build an herb garden.

We had the opportunity to attend the wedding of some friends back in Brewton. It was so nice to go back and see so many people very dear to us.

Gabrielle had a great time dressing up in the skirt I recently made for her and curling her hair. The wedding was a much anticipated event for us. We're a little sad it is over. We had fun looking forward to it.

We still don't have our goats. It seems every time he is off work and ready to build our fence, we get rain or bee issues.

I like all we do, but I wish we weren't so busy so we could do all the other things we want to add to what we do now.


The Gingerbread House said...

I'm glad to see that you have posted something on your blog..I knew you were's been a long time seeing a post!..Nice to have your Mom visit for a spell,and show her some of the talents you have acquired :o)..the fowl looks great..the kids looked like they were having the time of their life in the water ;o)
and they are growing up fast...Ginny

Joanne said...

The sweater for your mom looks wonderful! Great job.

Oh, how I miss the ocean and the beach. I love seeing those pictures.

Heather said...

Wow, what gorgeous pictures of the kids at the ocean. What a resource! My heart is so heavy about the oil spill. I hope it misses you guys all together. Congrats on the chicken harvest! I can't wait until you get your goats. And then your first kids. But truly, goats are something to take on when you're not too busy!

fleegle said...

Ohhh, the water looks glorious, sigh. It's 100 here, and I could use some cool waves...

Thanks for visting my blog!

fleegle said...

That made me cry.