"It was imprudent of us, in the first place, to become authors. We could have become something regular, but we managed not to.
We were lucky, but we were also determined." Roy Blount Jr

"I don’t change the facts to enhance the drama. I think of it the other way round, the drama has got to fit the facts,
and it’s your job as a writer to find the shape in real life."
Hilary Mantel

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Maple Sugaring--with Sheep!

I visited the farm with the sugar house that we've been going to for many years during sugaring season. The weather has been unseasonably cold and the maple syrup makers are hoping that it will run long, given that it's late. This past weekend was Maple Sugar Weekend when the sugar houses are open to the public with special events. I was otherwise occupied, so today I went up to the Ridge to see what I could see. And found a crowd of school children getting a lesson in syrup-making!

The sugar house.

The condenser.

Fuel for the condenser.

The product!

More products!

Truck with sap barrel.

The main reason I visit this farm instead of the multitude of others is, of course, the animals. Sugar season and lambing season coincide!

I love touching sheep. This ewe came right up and begged for a pat!

The cattle.

My favourite cow--black and white, of course. Like my dogs!

Sap collection at a different farm.

And collection system at yet another farm farther along the road.

When I say it's been "unseasonably cold," I mean it has been in the single digits or even below zero overnight, which is highly, highly unusual for late March. Daytime temperatures have bare broken freezing on most days. Fortunately a warm-up is on the forecast. And, in case I doubted that spring would ever come, I actually spotted a sign of summer--a daylily is starting to wake up from its long winter sleep!

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

March Forth! (My Birthday)

It might turn out to be the chilliest March Fourth on record in these parts, but thanks to the Chap it's springtime in the house. In addition to the lovely birthday flowers, I have other presents to delight me:

I'm also very happy to have the carpenter and a guy from the flooring company making some progress in the kitchen today. Based on their work schedule, I do believe the End of the renovations is approaching. We're at the stage where the dogs will have to go to the kennel, and we'll become even more reliant on restaurants than we have been up to now. But that means that we're in the final stages.

Though the daylight has lengthened and the sun rides higher in the sky, Spring doesn't seem particularly near. I think I'm going to need to travel to find some before it ever reaches New England!