The longstanding rules for March are relatively simple:
1. The crocus and daffodils will make their presence known just about the time you want to start crying into your snow shovel.
2. The magnolias will bloom one gorgeous morning quickly followed by a windstorm that will rip them to shreds faster than you can grab your camera. (As I type, winds are howling to 40 mph and will make it to 50 later.)
3. Said winds and milder temperatures will make you want to go out and fly a kite, at which point they will either stop for the rest of the month, or will pick up to speeds that will drag you and your kite into the next county. (Although, that's not a big trick for us.)
4. In like a lion and out like a lamb..OR..Vicey Versey
5. Little girls will be out and about in their frilly Easter dresses and new white shoes and tights and it will be snowy or muddy on Easter. You could move Easter to the end of July and this will still apply.
6. There will be three measurable snowfalls after the forsythia bloom.
See? Those are fairly simple.
So last week I was cutting through the yard after pruning the apple and maple trees, trimming the deadfall off of last summer's perennials, and I spied them. There were only two, but they were there. That was Thursday. On Saturday, the day of the Spring Scouting Camping trip, the boys were greeted with snow showers. Not an all day event. Not even a wide spread event. No, it was one of those days were you could watch individual snow and graupel showers pass by over a neighbor's field, but not your own.
On Sunday, we decided to change our scenery a bit and head out and visit a long advertised Consignment Sale. Every year Lodge 389 of the ZCBJ holds an enormous sale, with the benefits going towards the lodge. If you cannot find it there, it doesn't exist! 8 rows of stuff 1/3 to half mile long each! The walk from the car matches and exceeds that, but it is so worth it if for no other reason than to people watch and experience the bidding action.
One particular GIANT combine was fun to watch. The thing was pristine even though it was 20 years old. I HAD to watch to see how much it went for. The bidding started at $25,000, but had no bidders. It was lowered to $15,000 and went up from there. Two older gentlemen, no strangers to country auctions, nodded their heads almost imperceptibly to raise the bid. I swear I didn't even blink for 10 minutes. Doc said he had an itch on his nose, but didn't DARE to move to scratch it. To our, and everyone else's amazement, the combine sold for only $18,500!!!! UNBELIEVEABLE!
There were ducks, rabbits, chickens, peacocks, miniature horses, goats, implements, junk, cars,
We walked miles and miles. We didn't buy anything but lunch, which was amazing! Hot dogs, hamburgers (from Franks Smokehouse in Wilbur), pork sandwiches, soda, chips, and KOLACHES! If you've never had a kolaches, think of it as a flattened brioche bun with a dimple of deliciousness in the center. The filling can be poppy seed, coconut, blueberry, cherry, cream cheese, pineapple, apple, you name it. It's the Czechoslovakian version of a little Danish roll. I love them. The women of the lodge start baking them weeks before the sale and wrap and freeze them. I missed out on my coconut one, but was perfectly happy with my cream cheese, and Doc with his blueberry.
I highly recommend visiting the sale if you are in the area this time next year.
She has just finished sitting for her 8th day. She hasn't kicked any eggs out of the nest yet. She gets up a couple of times of day to eat and poo. A few of those times, Meriwether will go and sit on the eggs, but quickly gets off when grumpy Daisy returns. Olive tried to babysit today, but refused to get off. We had to move her to let Daisy back on. Broody begets more broodys. But I HOPE not in this case.
I am going to try to candle eggs the next time she gets off this weekend.
She's doing great. Even when our temperatures dropped into the low 20s two nights in a row. She just loaded up on food and hunkered down. I made sure to feed her lots of mealworms as a good girl treat.
I ordered 10 cu yards of fabulous composted earth from the local county composting site. I got some last year with some incredible results. This year I needed to repair some horrible landscaping errors by that landscaper we hired last year. I also needed to fill in some problem areas in the yard due to years of neglect and erosion. I used the tractor to move giant piles of dirt to the approximate locations, but the final spreading and feathering had to be done by hand. After 5 hours of that, I could feel no part of my body, but everything hurt at the same time. We are expecting rain, which should settle it all down some for me to rough it up a tad and throw some clover seed down.
I also purchased a drag harrow for the back of the small lawn tractor, or the large one, to drag compacted places in the hayfield to break up the sod a bit so that I can throw some forage seed down to continue to soften the soil and add nutrients as well.
I get all my seed from stock seed farm,which I cannot recommend highly enough!
I also purchased four large red bud trees for somewhere in the pasture, and a pussy willow, whose home I have yet to figure out.
The barn and garage have both had a thorough spring cleaning. The yard ornaments are back in their fair weather locations. The patio furniture is all out. See rule #2,#3, and #6. Yes, snow and a windstorm are coming. Sigh.