It really has been awhile. I can’t believe that I have been absent for so long from the blog! The end of 2017 came and went, and it feels as though the winter is picking up speed and galloping toward the finish line, faster and faster. Or maybe that is just wishful thinking!
The more daylight we find ourselves with, the happier I am, though. I don’t get seasonal affective disorder or anything, but it’s just cheery to look up and realize it’s 5 PM and the sky isn’t as black as night. I know what comes next in the weather department can be the worst of the winter, but it won’t be long. Spring will show up one of these days!
Our winter program for the goats has been going along fairly well, although we have had some trouble with the electrical supply to keep the water buckets from freezing. Hopefully we can upgrade that once the weather gets warmer so that we don’t have these issues next year. The brutal cold spell that we had earlier on in the winter is mercifully just a memory now, and we all have our fingers crossed for more middle of the road winter weather for the rest of the season.
We are, of course, beginning the countdown to goat babies. Pippi and Saffron have the earliest dates, round about March 23. Our only real wild card is Edna… she must have been in stealth breeding mode, as I never caught her in heat or even with the buck. But she looks like she has a very nice baby bump coming along, so we just have to watch her. Everyone is looking very healthy, thankfully. Peanut and Twig are as sweet as ever, providing a lot of cuddle opportunities every day.
And so it goes. I am just about up and around after a good 10 days of the Type A flu. Being asthmatic, I try to be especially careful, but this really caught me off-guard. It was a particularly bad one. Wishing everyone a very belated Happy New Year!
Well, the Bombogenesis is here. We on the coast have been having torrential rain and strengthening winds for hours now, and the lights are flickering every few minutes. I would say that we are probably going to lose power shortly to the wind and crazy fluctuations in the atmosphere.
I don’t know how many of you out there are Susan Cooper fans (she is an awesome British author of some of my favorite books – she is also a poet). I have been a big fan of her fiction for many years. Her Dark is Rising Sequence series being one of my faves.
Every year around Solstice and Christmas I try to either read The Dark is Rising, or watch it’s movie equivalent, The Seeker: Dark is Rising. Having to rely on Netflix DVD delivery meant that today was the day I received it, and so we had a wild viewing of it while the lights flickered and the wind howled outside. Quite the most dramatic rendition I can remember! It was extremely atmospheric and it made me quite jumpy, what with the wild wind and the relentless rain on our metal roof. I was very glad when Ian McShane and his friends prevailed over the Dark. Phew!
Another year. Again, a wonderful story. Darkness and Light, the eternal struggle. One in which most of us are fixated upon as we watch the light gain strength, even as the winter deepens. It’s a funny thing, winter growing as the light returns. It’s just one of those things that we can celebrate or fight. Tonight I am feeling a little bit of hope.
It’s really here! Another year has come and gone. I am not one to go all New Year resolutions in January as I prefer to celebrate the “new year” in the autumn, at Rosh Hashanah. But thinking about a new beginning, as the year reaches its darkest point, has some merits as well. I relish the opportunity to hunker down in the house, (hopefully with a wood stove soon!), and get some serious knitting, spinning and reading done. To slow down and enjoy each day’s garnering of a few minutes more light.
I have not been able to find which of my favorite bloggers quoted Charles Spurgeon last year with his “Begin as you mean to go on, and go on as you began…” line. But it’s how I would like to go into 2015, my 61st year (oh my!), and take as much time with friends and family as I can, as well as trying to get enough rest. And the topper would be making sure that I build enough time into my mornings to really whip my spinal arthritis and bursitis hips into movable shape! That takes more doing these days, and with all the chores and getting ready to get out the door by 6:15, I don’t always take the time. Hopefully I will be more mindful of that, so my days are more productive and full of the things I want and need to accomplish.
I think I need to take a leaf out of a good friend’s book: mindful focus. (Kris writes a wonderful blog, Losing Sleep, Counting Sheep . Take a look, it’s a great read). I think that mindful focus really sums things up quite nicely.
The first day of the calendar year 2012 was a beautiful and warm one, sunny and in the 40s. It gave me the opportunity to get some things picked up and cleaned up that we haven’t had a chance to get to. Whenever we *think* we need to keep a backlog of things like feed bags (because you know, they do come in handy for all kinds of things!) they frequently pile up to the point of being in the way instead of being helpful. We have had a pile in one corner of the hay greenhouse that I have been itching to get cleaned up, but snakes give me the creeps, and I knew there were snakes hiding in there during the warm weather over the summer. (I knew because I had seen them, and also there were sloughed-off skins in the pile). The snakes are excellent rodent control, but I dislike dealing with them in a confined space!
It was lovely to be outside today in the sunlight and warmth, so I went to work. Of course I was very gung-ho and got everything cleaned out and then, as an afterthought, asked my husband if he had a burn permit, because wouldn’t it be so much easier to just burn the darn things instead of shoving them into plastic garbage bags? Poor man didn’t have a chance, so he ran down to the fire chief’s house and got a permit and we merrily set the pile alight. Everything burned very efficiently, and we even got rid of some brush while we were at it. It was indeed a pleasure! I love a clean greenhouse :*) Happy New Year to us!
Coopworth Fiber, LaMancha Dairy Goats and Cheese on the Coast of Maine!