winter days

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Winter days on Baldy Hill can be cold and bleak, for sure. The sky has been predominately gray since we started the new year, and we’ve awoken to snow and ice and frigid temperatures most mornings. But we’ve done our best to keep warm, the wood stove our endearing friend, and make the most of these quiet, reflective days.

Our Ameraucanas (and occasionally an Orpington) are still producing enough eggs to keep us happy, so I’ve regularly been making vegetable tarts — this one was made with garlic scapes, broccoli, red pepper and the last of the NYE’s goat cheese. A steady stream of birds have been visiting our feeders as well. Among the usual visitors — chickadees, cardinals, downy woodpeckers, tufted titmice, sparrows, bluejays, starlings, nuthatches, a Carolina wren — a stunning pair of red-bellied woodpeckers stop by several times a day. I’ve heard that they can often dominate feeders, but this pair shows none of that behavior, patiently waiting their turn at the suet.

Although we’ve yet to reach winter’s midpoint, the light has begun to shift toward spring. We note the difference where the sun rays hit the dining table in the morning. My trip to bring in the chickens in the evening is fifteen minutes later than a couple weeks ago. Winter break from school ends next week and the spring semester begins. The seed catalogs pile up and garden planning begins.

But I don’t rush the days toward the next season. In fact, during this holiday, I have consciously slowed down, limited distractions, and focused on one task at a time. I’m not stressing about what doesn’t get done today, as I’m learning to be more realistic about what I can do in a single set of waking hours. I know I’m not alone in coming to the realization that doing, doing, doing all the time is no good, not to mention that doing less often miraculously results in producing more — more fulfilling, happier days. 🙂

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