Spring Awakening

I've been absent for a bit. Just enjoying the springlike weather and celebrating all the March birthdays we have in our family. Today I'll be baking a lemon cake to take to a gathering at the farm to celebrate my mother-in-law's 92nd St. Patrick's Day birthday!

The weather has been unreal. Normally we should be having highs in the mid-40's but all week it's been in the 60's and 70's, possibly near 80 tomorrow. It's a bit scary too. I'm hoping the trend won't continue into summer. I walked around the garden yesterday and noticed signs of life beginning to stir. Little red nubs of rhubarb are starting to poke through the soil, tulips are sprouting and buds swelling on a few of the shrubs. I think it's time to go hunting for pussy willow branches. They should be starting to appear with these warm temperatures.

Maple syrup is a big thing around here this time of year. It hasn't been a good year for maple syrup producers. Ideally they need cold nights and warm days to get the sap running good. The nights haven't been getting below freezing and the days have been too warm. Luckily, when I was cleaning my freezer a few weeks ago, I discovered a big jar of maple syrup left over from last year. One of my fondest memories of childhood was going to my great-aunt's sugar bush to watch them making syrup. It was basically an open sided shelter in the woods with big vat cookers. The sweet smelling steam would be rolling out as they spent all day cooking. For lunch we boiled eggs in the vats. There was usually snow on the ground yet and they had a sled pulled by a horse. On the sled was a big barrel to empty the sap buckets into. Anyway, there's nothing like the taste of the year's first fresh maple syrup!

Ever since last fall, when we had all our windows replaced, we've had the old window sashes sitting in our garage taking up space. That's thirty-six sashes in all! I decided to put them on craigslist a couple days ago, thinking someone might want a few for cold frames this time of year or want the wavy old glass. I was elated to make a deal with someone who wants ALL of them! Now I just need to find some takers for the 60 cast iron window weights, sash pulleys and locks. If we can get the garage cleaned out enough I might even entertain thoughts of a thrift sale this spring. I haven't had one of those in quite awhile and can certainly find plenty of things to make for a good sale.

Have a great weekend.

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