As the snow slowly recedes and the mud rises to the surface, there is that jolt one gets as the reality of what needs done sinks in. Spring Shock. As I view the panorama of sludge, weeds and plowed earth (where it ain't supposed to be plowed), I usually feel my brain seize up. Just when I should be ratcheting up the outdoor activity, I scuttle inside and decide to read all those books I had on my winter to-do list. Coward that I am. Luckily, it doesn't take long before the old stiff-upper-everything me pulls up her BGPs and grabs a rake. And a shovel. And an Aleve.
The malady that struck me low, has subsided and I am feeling almost one hundred percent. That is a relief, let me tell you. The Pepperoni still struggles with the aftermath of his spinal injury, but there is no keeping that boy down - which is why he will be in perpetual House Arrest. If I could just break him of his most annoying habit - peeing as control. I have gotten pretty wily myself - closing the gates on the deck so that I don't have to (wo)man handle him to the back door. As soon as I open his crate (he will not, stubborn bugger that he is, come out on his own) and put my hands on him, it's like a little peeing fire hose. I now motivate him by tossing a treat in the general direction of the door, then hot-foot it to the crate and slam the door shut so he can't go back in. He can manage the short step down and I don't care if he pees on the deck. The trick is to hold him firmly, while giving back support and pointing his pee-er away from me. So far, he's got me well-trained.
There is so much clean up needed that I stood outside with a rake in my hand and went around in a circle - trying to decide where to start. I am zeroing in on the soon-to-be flower bed, as it's the smallest space. No sense jumping into the deep end, right?
Some things have been put at the top of the list due to necessity - cleaning out the small coop in preparation for the inside chicks. Clearing out half the shed and putting together my meat chick brooder. Shoveling llama beans onto my rhubarb. After realizing that my focus is not getting sharper with age, I am going to go out with a notebook and write down everything that needs to be replaced or repaired. That way I will have a record of it and will tackle each entry as I have time/money for it. One of the things that need to be dealt with this year is the vast amount of dead tree cutting that needs to be done. Prior owners of the property, in their dubious wisdom, planted tons of pine trees. About a foot apart. Many of these trees and those in our area, like so much of the Northeast, has been hit hard with a fatal disease. I am going to lose most of my windbreak, by the time they are all taken down. I had been thinking of planting arborvitae in their place, but I am not entirely sold on it. I think I would prefer something that spread out more than up. More research is needed.
Pretty soon I will be making an appointment with the shearer. I am most positive this year that Norman will not be thin. Quite the opposite. Watching that boy from behind makes one thing of African rivers full of hippos. Or a very large sack of fighting cats. Juno is looking a bit puny. She was the first lamb born on the LLF, so that would make her around 7. Linden continues with his gimpy hoof - another reason I am looking forward to the shearer's visit - he's much better (read: ruthless) with trimming. Apria needs a bunch of work, but it is difficult, as she is very spooky and her eyesight is extremely limited. I think I may need an expert. Or a dart gun.
All plans of seed starting have not reached further than the fuzzy edges of my brain. I need to make lists but don't know that my constitution is up to it. Instead, I am hiding away inside under the pretense of getting my Memorial Day yard sale together. That's a whole nuther ball of wax.