Happy New Year!

Happy New Year from our humble homestead to yours!  As 2012 made its grande entrance today , we took it easy–JGL is in the midst of a not so fun cold, and with only one more day before we both return to work we thought an easy Sunday would be a good thing.  I whipped up a batch of turkey soup, planted some more lettuce in the cold frame (more on that soon!), cleaned up the front flower bed up some more, and mowed the front lawn.

You know what Mom says, whatever you do New Year’s Day you do all year-long, so easy Sunday’s can still be productive Sunday’s, right?

As I pulled some leaves that had gathered in the front bed into the yard so I could chop them up with the lawn mower, I was shocked to find the above purple beauty just hanging out.  More surprisingly, there are more tight cluster of flower buds waiting to open up soon as well.  Poor little guy thinks it’s late March, not January 1st.  And frankly, as I started to break a decent sweat this afternoon mowing, if I closed my eyes and let my mind wander I almost could believe that spring was almost here myself.  But by next Tuesday we’re suppose to have highs in the mid-thirties, and winter will be visiting us once again–one of the many things I’ll never fully get used to living down here in Virginia.

Yet, it’s that glorious early spring that lets us get cracking on the new harvest, which I’m just itching to plot and plan.  Thoughts for 2012 include starting our tomato seedlings in the next week or so (EEP!), a concentrated effort on container gardening and creating variety in these raised containers, adding raspberries and blackberries to the homestead, preserving, preserving, preserving, and potentially Can Jamming with friends.  We’re also considering the benefits of joining our local CSA to help supplement what we grow (thoughts and your CSA experiences are MORE than welcomed!), and I have a vague idea/budget plan about patronizing our local butcher more often.  It’s going to be a great year, and I’m grateful for those of you who are along for this journey with us.

May your 2012 bring you and yours lots of happy times, beautiful memories, and a bountiful year!

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Mulch-y goodness

I know gardening, for some people, provides a zen-like experience.  For me, I kind of feel like a kamikaze gardener–I get something in my brain that I’m going to do and I do it.  Like the time I made JGL help me rip out all the rhododendron bushes in the front yard.  Or when I thought we should expand the veggie garden.  Or this week, when I had it in my mind that I was going to mulch the front beds.

JGL’s on a golf day today, which is good because I mulch alone.  Not that I don’t enjoy his company, but for whatever reason, I really enjoy the act of mulching, and I really enjoy it when I have the opportunity to do it by myself (weird, I know).  And when I’m feeling like I need to do something meaningful and tangible, mulching does it for me.  So JGL bartered with the neighbor for the use of his truck, and we’re both happy campers about how we spent our Saturdays.

I won’t be able to walk tomorrow, but I am feeling a whole heck of a lot better about myself 🙂

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