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Archive for February, 2011


It’s a joy to see the end of February. Not that anything bad happened in February, just that it brings us that much closer to March and April and May…to longer days and shorter nights. Hopefully to sun breaks and warm breezes. The sun and warmth are not always guaranteed around these parts. Some years it feels like they don’t occur at all until about the second week of August. But most years we have a few good weeks scattered about in which we can sit in the sun in the late afternoon and smell the scents of the flowers blooming, while the birds flit about serenading. I cannot wait for those days to be here. My anticipation feels urgent and anxious this year, like a 5 year old awaiting Santa. And so the tumble into March on Tuesday is a happy and welcome circumstance. As is — a couple of weeks later — the switch to Daylight Savings time. (Personally I think the day we change to Daylight Savings time should be declared a national holiday. Some people think we should do away with it. Those people should be sent to live outer Siberia.)

February has passed in much the same way January did, only with the addition of a lot of cooking (and a lot of late season snow). I’ve been holding kitchen marathons on Sundays — roasting chickens, baking crustless quiches, frying bacon, simmering meatballs, braising ribs. Then I pack it all into the refrigerator for a week’s worth of lunches and dinners. It consumes my weekends, but makes the weeknights so much easier. It’d be nice if Stephen took care of some of the shopping and cooking, since he’s home all day, but those days appear to be long gone. So I’m developing a routine around caring for him — making sure he’s eating well — and caring for myself and all the critters as well. We’re eating a low-carb, no grains diet with very little sugar. You could read that as lots of meats and veggies and salads. Easy on the fruits.

On March first the new dishwasher arrives. Then we have a few weeks to prepare before the arrival of ten day-old baby chicks at the end of the month. Taxes will need to be completed somewhere in there. Stephen’s re-building the decrepit cold-frame that came with the property, and we’ll get some plants growing in the early spring weather. We planted some Leyland Cypress early in the month, as well as lilacs. We have 8 blueberry bushes ready to go into the ground. That is, assuming the snow ever goes away.

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January was exceptionally quiet here at 3 Crows Whidbey. The year started with snow that kept me working from home for a couple of days — never a bad outcome, that. Right along with that snow came the cold. It seemed colder than usual, but 20 degree weather always does, and yet we seem to have a few days of it every year. There were a lot of wood fires in the stove and we went through a lot of wood. The stuff we bought back in October is too green and made it a pain in the neck to start and keep the fires going, we’ll need to do better with wood purchases next year. In addition to the costs of wood, it seems to cost a good deal of money to purchase both propane and electricity for this house. It’s a pretty big space and we combined two households, so I can’t complain too much, but it would be nice to find a way to bring those costs down a bit. I think a multi-day timer on the living room thermostat is project number one.

Really, I think the only things accomplished around here in January were a lot of book reading, movie watching, and sleeping (outside of my going to work, of course). Oh! And we ordered 10 baby chicks (due date ~3/29) and a new dishwasher (due date 3/1).

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