“Burn down your cities and leave our farms, and your cities will spring up again as if by magic; but destroy our farms and the grass will grow in the streets of every city in the country.” William Jennings Bryan

Sunday, April 17, 2016

April 17, 2016

There hasn’t been much new to post lately. Things have been blandly and happily routine here. Sometimes nothing new is something new. I take some comfort that it’s been quiet, and we are not battling with anything. Hopefully, the peace will stay.


One thing that I have always known, but still have had a hard time doing, is to let go of the things that take all too much effort to hang onto. Some of these things are dreams, some are people, and some are times. I am learning that I can’t carry these heavy things with me day after day and I need to put them down to move on and be happier. It’s sometimes better to enjoy the passing light of a sunset, trusting that the stars will come out to lead me to the next sunrise. A better day is one that will not weigh me down. 


I took out the apple trees along the driveway which I planted our first year here. I had always wanted apple trees, but unfortunately it didn’t work out. I gave them ten years. I had bought ones that were resistance to blight and other diseases, but they were not tolerant to rust. I don’t know of any apple tree that is. I took my chances but with so many cedar trees – the host plant for rust – they were overwhelmed every summer and always in a weakened state so that they never were healthy and never produced an edible apple. The only way to fight rust is to soak the trees regularly with fungicides and that was never part of my plan. It just didn’t work out.

Now without the apple trees I can open up the area for the goats to graze and I can eliminate a lot of mowing, weed pulling, and trimming. It will be a lot less work for us and the area will be productive again. When one door closes another opens.


In a few weeks I will be getting two honey bee “nucs”, which are each five frames of bees with a laying queen. I will transfer the nucs into their own hives and if all goes well – the weather, having enough pollen/ nectar, staying healthy, etc – they will grow into full colonies.
For the first time in years I have no bees. Last October my last surviving colony absconded – left the hive for unknown reasons to find another home. I have no idea if their flight was successful or not. Maybe they found a hollow in a tree and made it through the winter. I hope so. Yesterday there were honey bees on the dandelions in the side yard which means there is a least a colony somewhere in the area, and that colony could be feral or from another beekeeper’s yard. I do wonder if they were once mine.


Six weeks ago we bought 7 one day old chicks – six black sex-links and one white anuranca. The first few weeks they lived under a heat lamp in a brooder box in my daughter’s room (her choice). As they got bigger we moved them into a larger “box” and put them in the downstairs bathroom. We planned to take them to the baby chicken pen outside, but the weather turned too cold. Instead, we made a “playpen” in the family room so that they had more room. The weather has finally warmed, so yesterday we moved them outside. In a few weeks they will be big enough to start free ranging, and in maybe a month, they will be able to fend for themselves and be allowed to blend into our main flock. It won’t be too long then that they will be laying eggs.


Overall, it’s a good spring! All’s wel!

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