Finding beauty in January

It’s easy to feel a little low energy on these gray January days despite the increasing 1-2 minutes of light each day.  I needed to bring in a little positive vibe and motivation so I took my camera around the property on a little discovery tour. January can be beautiful too.

I started in the garden. Kale trees in the rear. Chard debating whether to start growing again. Red cabbage planted out in July,  I’m hoping it will overwinter and grow cabbages in spring.

I’m hoping the broccoli, also planted in July, will put off early spring shoots.

This little broccoli head stopped growing a couple months ago but is still strong and green. Any chance it would still form a head? (Not a rhetorical question!)

Overall view of muddy, wet garden just for winter reference.

Moving to the pasture…Irene is tired of the mud I’m sure.

Else loves pumpkins and doesn’t appear to even notice the mud.

Sometimes they share…sort of.

On to the barn…This barn we are loving was built by Drew Reed on Orcas. It’s high and dry. One day I’ll post the project in full. We started in a very wet March 2017 and finished Sept 17.. tbc

down below the barn the goats eating leftover veggie bits from Star Route Kitchen.

On up and around to the backside of the property to the pond.

The pond overflows this time of the year…

And creates these beautiful forces of water.

I met with friends this week and took away ideas, support, motivation and some good laughs. One thing in particular we talked about, around planning, was scheduling in time to just think and daydream- like Socrates and the Greek philosophers did. They weren’t just sitting around doing nothing. They were only creating the basics of our modern philosophy. I know I need this time as well and it’s hard to prioritize it because you aren’t “doing” –  you’re not even meditating. I think it’s something missing for many, as even the short free moments, in the elevator, filling up the gas tank, or waiting in lines, we are plugged in. I’m going to sit and stare out the window- at least a few times a week and channel some greek philosophers.

Any suggestions or thoughts on how you like to daydream? And keep it nice!

Want to hear a fantastic podcast?  Tom Hanks on Beautiful Writer’s Mind.

Winter! Do your work- for the money and the soul (maybe you’re fortunate enough that it’s the same thing), your tasks, your yoga, your meditation, your care giving, your workouts… and remember to make time to just daydream. You’ll like it:)

 

Lighter shades of gray for just a little longer  each day now.  Weather Underground

  • SUNRISE: 7:50 AM    SUNSET: 4:59 PM
  • Length of Visible Light: 10 h 17 m
  • Length of Day: 9 h 08 m
  • Tomorrow will be 2 minutes 42 seconds longer

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goat kids on the move!

It’s a sweet time on the farm when the kids are due. Anticipation, nervousness, excitement join to form a feeling that sort of keeps you on edge, and a little bit holding your breath and not realizing it. I actually start looking at photos of baby goats from the previous year. I’m constantly in the barn monitoring (but not sleeping there like some with many, many goats) I check the kidding kit and track down missing parts or say pull the same snot sucker, (baby nasal aspirator) thing from the bathroom drawer that I had used for my kids 20 years ago. This is still only our third year and I’ve not needed it previously but maybe this time. Our does have mostly done it all themselves with only a little assistance for a couple and they’ve all been born healthy.

Especially with social media, I see I’m not alone in this just post empty nest time. I love being a mom and in some little way I get to help “mother” the kids:) They can’t help but fill your heart. Their trust, vulnerability and curiosity are powerful. And it’s just plain fun and so amusing. Holding a baby goat brings you very much into the present and just gives you a moment to step outside of a sometimes crazy world.  I’m grateful we have the opportunity to experience this process and share it with others. We’ve so enjoyed all the visitors the last two weeks.  We are grateful for another successful kidding season with 11 out of 11 strong, healthy kids. And we will be looking for new homes in the near future!

So let’s get to it…There’s a lot of goat kid cuteness all over the web- here is what we have to add.

First to give birth on April 3rd was Dinah our Lagerian (they don’t have their own wikipedia link). She’s a cross between a La Mancha who have the elf or gopher ear trait(we call them all nubby ears) and a Nigerian Dwarf. You hope for the butterfat of the Nigerian with a little larger size/milk capacity of the La Mancha who also have very sweet personalities.  She kidded, cleaned them and they were nursing by the time we saw them. She’s like that.

With her buckling Duffy.

goat kids

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farm update- kids are coming (goats that is)

We are on our second day of sun. Well, dry and partly sun at least. It has been a very long rainy season- like for reals not just “seems like the wettest year EVER!” We have all been sloshing through mud and we are over it. #Mudzen.

Here’s a glimpse of most of the farm fam… Click here to see where this began.

#starrouteorcas

Add some chickens in there and our land mates’ Blue Healer, Jasper.

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zucchini pasta, kalamatas, sun dried tomatoes,basil and more

Here’s another summer dish that’s fitting for dinner and a great one to take to a potluck… How many of you go to potlucks? It’s a regular thing here on Orcas Island. We don’t have a lot of entertainment.I think this zucchini pasta loaded with kalamatas, sun dried tomatoes, artichoke hearts, and red onion should peak the interest of the paleo and plant based eaters alike! And anyone in-between for that matter.

wendyellenthomas.comI got this handy dandy spiralizer that I’m sure I mentioned last summer. or did I?

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got GOATS!

Hi campers! How was your spring? We are busy little monkeys around here. I took an unspoken blogging “break”… lots of real time action for us has meant putting my photos and writing on the back burner.

We had a couple of kids last month! Basically from November 20th when our Nubian doe, Shirley had her “encounter” with Jimmy Mac until about 2 weeks before Shirley gave birth- I wasn’t 100% sure the deed was done. After all, the moment consisted of little foreplay and lasted about as long as the time it took Ollie to unscrew his coffee cup to check how hot it was. We had anticipated a little kickback time and literally it was done as he screwed the cap back on. But then Rocky and Jane happened April 22nd…

goats 5-15-2

goats 5-15-4

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Happy New Year

Finally. Your new year probably started a couple weeks ago. But our first week felt like a hiatus between the lines of time. Now we are looking ahead at travel plans to NYC for the Gift fair. Excited to get back on track with yoga and exercise… you know that momentum of righteous resolution. After days of barely having any appetite my buds re-calibrated post holiday to not needing so much sweet and I already dropped my holiday mid waist luggage.

We nursed a gnarly flu with the following arsenal… This is how we do it.

herb pharm herb blend Herb pharm echinacea goldenseal blend. I’ll take this 2-3x day

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Raw Energy bars

Hello again…

Summer is winding up and we are flush with garden vegetables and fruits yet, I still love to make these raw nut and seed bars. They are a nice fit after yoga or to help fill in the hunger gaps creeping into my afternoons. I’m one of those people that rarely awaits the pang of hunger. Now and again I like to feel it… but rarely.

Print: {organic raw nut and seed bar}
raw bars - wendyellenthomas.comI use a base of almonds, cashews and dates and sometimes hazelnuts get thrown in depending what’s on hand. I find the cashews help a little more with binding and it’s important for it not to be too dry or they really crumble apart.  I’ve tried my new vitamix (which I LOVE) but really this recipe is working better in the cuisinart.

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