Well, it's been an interesting week or so. I figure that I've run through of all the bad stuff early, so that I can look with my rosy-pink-Pollyanna-glasses at the rest of the year.
I am chomping at the bit to get out in my garden. Unfortunately, I still can't see it. But the volume of snow has gone down noticeably and I am thankful that the weather hasn't taken a sharp turn towards warming. As much as I long to run my toes through the grass (or mud, for that matter), I don't want to face a flooding problem. I am starting to see the tops of buckets and patches of ground around trees, so things are headed in the right direction.
I've also started a list of spring repairs. Be still my quavering heart! I'm up to three pages and I am not finished!! Gates came apart, fences need mending, there's a hole in the hoop house cover, ice dams wreaked havoc on my chicken yard fence/gate. A lot of the back deck needs replacing. The front of the coop needs a major overhaul. I HAVE to finish the run-in shed. Etc. I'm not sure how to best attack the lot of it, but I think I will use the same strategy that I use in approaching my make-up each morning (minimal at best, but I do have to shore up a bit for the office crowd). One eye at a time. Or, in this case, one section at a time. I know that there is a precious little period where the ground is too soggy to start on the garden. That is when I will pounce! (snort) First up are the gates and fences. Then it's poop patrol (for all hooved and pawed residents). Then coop-cleaning. That's as far as I've gotten. Of course, given that I have one day a week to do most of it, that may be as far as I get. I also want to start more of my own plants this year - on time. Last year I was a little over-eager and started them too soon. Too many were so leggy they didn't do well or make it at all. It's not easy being patient.
Every year I celebrate St. Patrick's Day the Sunday before the actual day. I avoid the day itself, as it is too often a day marred by idiots+drinking+driving. As is usually the case, I have my parents and their besties (my neighbors) over for dinner. This year I also had my neighbor who makes my life so much easier (as he does for most of his neighbors). In the past, I would have gotten an expensive cut of brisket, organic taters and carrots and cabbage, whipped up three soda breads - making sure that everything was cooked as traditionally as possible. Well, let's just say that this year was different. I had gotten a cheap cut of brisket before my non-shopping at the store vow and had it in the freezer. I did manage to snag an organic cabbage and carrots at a winter farmers market. I had potatoes in storage. I resorted to the crockpot (never to look back, I may add). I made two GF soda breads that I thought I had ruined due to multi-tasking, but they were fine. I vacuumed the house to within an inch of it's life, put Pepper in lock down (he injured his back - see 'run of bad stuff' referenced above), did twelve loads of laundry and draped it all over the house on Saturday. Somewhere around 10A Sunday, I started to hyperventilate. This happens all the time. Instead of a go-with-the-flow attitude, I get a OMG-what-if! attitude. It's not helpful. Desperate to get myself on a more even keel, I put a meditation cd on the stereo. By jiminy, it worked! While it will take years of practice to whip my frantic brain into a single focus, hearing the calm voice settled me down, as I flitted about with my dust mop, going "ooooom" and "aaaaaah". The dogs were skeptical.
My parents arrived, Pepper was assigned to my dad's lap (they both loved it), their besties arrived shortly afterward and then it was like hearing birds chattering. I got to putter around in the kitchen, set the table, heat the plates, serve the food. It was fun. After everyone had gone and the dishes were cleaned up, the dogs were all in an exhausted, happy heap. Pepper was snug in his little bed with a heated rice bag on his back. Lovey was snoring away, all three marrow bones held close to her chest. Scrappy was snoring loudly, wrapped in his blankie on the favorite end of the couch. I was tucked in a chair with the New Yorker magazine and a nice cup of tea. All was right with my world.