Welcome to our 1864 farmhouse…life is good!

Tuesday, February 26

a spring tease...

This winter has been one to remember. While the weekend began clear and brilliant, soon a cutting wind swept across the open cornfields and began to rattle the windows. The local broadcast called for gusts up to 50 mph and so before nightfall, we had double-checked that our animals were safely tucked in and then we tightened down anything that could blow away. 

Candles and flashlights were ready if we lost power, the kerosene heater was handy, and firewood stacked by the kitchen door. We all slept a little uneasy that night...the tall pines surrounding the old farmhouse creaked and the wind whistled through any opening it could find. On nights like that, it feels as if the entire house will set sail. Of course it never does...it holds tight to the land and ignores such weather as it's done for 155 years.

In the morning, we woke to find everything was fine...a few more limbs in the yard and couple of tarps blown away, but nothing serious. However; the farm at the end of the road lost an enormous pine tree, narrowly missing their barn; while a few miles away friends were without power for about 10 hours.

Yes, definitely a winter we'll remember, and tomorrow "they" say it will be 50 degrees...we'll see.

And so today I thought I'd share a few summertime snapshots...believe it or not, it'll be here soon enough!

Wednesday, February 13

oh-so easy Valentine's Day treats!

Today I'll take a break from talking about the weather...

I won't tell you about the 1.21" of rain we received yesterday, closing roads and making everything muddy. The kind of mud that boots sink down into and make me wonder if they're actually going to be pulled off my feet with each step.

I won't tell you that today it's a blizzard...blinding snow paired with non-stop westerly winds (winds which once again remind us that plaster walls from 1864 can only do so much.)

What I will tell you is that in no time at all you can easily whip up lots of treats for tomorrow's big day! Inspired by some sweets I saw at a local store, why buy when it's a snap to make them at home?

Step one...

gather your favorite goodies; for us that's a collection of strawberries, cookies, pretzel rods, rice squares, and crisply cooked bacon. (YES, BACON!)

Step two...

place candy melts in a double boiler (for me, candy melts work better than melting chocolate chips - they seem smoother and hold their shape better after dipping.)

Step three...

dip goodies; top with sprinkles or drizzle with extra chocolate and set aside to cool and harden.

I hear a local pizza shop is baking heart-shaped pizzas...dinner's taken care of!

Tomorrow is special day for letting those we love know just how much we care...create some chocolaty treats, make a phone call, invite girlfriends over for afternoon tea, make heart-shaped pizzas with the kids, or leave a surprise on a friend's doorstep.

Let your heart be light!

Friday, February 8

snapshots of winter

Friday photos of winter in the heartland...and what a winter it's been!

Ice everywhere...

a snow-covered dinner bell...

in July this tree will be covered with mulberries!

and soon sheets will be drying in the summer breeze

somewhere under all the snow are cold frames that will be filled with lettuce, spinach, and cilantro

and this vintage sink will be full of garden veggies just waiting to be rinsed

and so it goes...

Now don't get me wrong, I LOVE winter...it's a much needed break from planting, tilling, trimming, weeding, mowing, mulching, mucking and all the other summertime chores. Chores that seem to come on the hottest, most humid of days. 

Now is the time for our bodies and spirits to unwind and relax...and that's just fine with me. Flannel sheets, thick socks, chocolaty cocoa, snow ice cream, old movies, good books, and warm fires. And did I mention the kids had 5 days in a row off from school thanks to Mother Nature?

Even with the sub-zero temperatures, frozen washer pipes, and the day both trucks had batteries that failed, I have to say, yep, life is still good.

Wherever you are, I hope you're warm & cozy!

01 09 10