Monday, March 5, 2012

Augh! Computers!

   This is obviously NOT a good computer day here at the farm! I've had to restart mine three times, been kicked off, restart again, it stole my homepage and I had to reset that, and it won't let me go where I need to!! So...if all of a sudden I disappear - you know why!
   I'll try to keep it short and sweet...or salty...depending on the pics.

Here's the smoke house that we smoked the hams in...

They turned out a little salty - okay the bacon is WAY salty for me. But, Marty assured me he can fix that. I haven't had any strips of bacon with my eggs yet tho. Not sure about the ham yet. The smoking went really well tho. The guys smoked them for two days and the smell and flavor of it is great.

Ducks are loving the spring weather...

Chickens are roaming far and wide into the fields to get the worms. Suzy the Sussex and Della the Delaware are really out there far. Then, of course, they convince Top Top to go out too. She is the goofy looking one with the white top hat hair do that can't see anything. I worry about her getting scarfed up by the hawks. So far she's still with us.

Syrup season is closing down. We boiled all the sap we had left yesterday. Today, since it is warmer again, we'll check the buckets one last time and try to get another two gallons before shutting down completely. Our year was really patchy - cold, hot, cold, hot - so we got less syrup this year. We are at 30 gallons right now on the chart. Last year we had 53. Each year is different and we never know what to expect. But, that is farming!

After we boil the rest down we will go thru the clean up process, washing buckets and lids and taps, cleaning up the evaporator (no small feat), washing the floors, and putting everything away for the next season so the mice don't get into it.

In the growing room in the basement - wow! Stuff is really tall and gangly this year. We are trying to figure out why. The peppers are looking good. We will start seedlings of tomatoes, eggplant, and other fruiting plants next week (14th) which is an ideal day on the calendar for it.

This next couple of warm days I'll be cleaning out the "south greenhouse" and repairing the plastic...

then I will move the colder loving plants from the basement into it on the shelves across the back wall. These will include the kale, brussel sprouts, and bok choi. When the bok choi are big enough I'll plant them in the ground in that same greenhouse (actually it's a hoophouse as it has no heat added to it). We lost our bok choi that were planted into the big hoophouses, not sure what happened but might've been that cold snap last week.

Spring work is also starting. We planted onions last Wednesday in the field - 500 feet. Will has been checking the wheat field, waiting for a dry stretch so he can till. We are fixing tractors in anticipation of using them soon. And, building work is beginning now that the weather is getting warmer (I love that job!).

We have heard the news about bad tornadoes in southern IL, IN, KY, TN, AL. Wow. Our hearts go out to all of those who have lost so much.

Oh well for short and sweet...


  1. So glad that you're having some spring weather up the picture of the ducks wading in the puddle. Know there's always lots and lots to do in the springtime. Looks like your winter hibernation (what?) is over.

  2. Too much salty bacon, too little syrup, gangly basement growth, and a spat of unseasonable tornados. This season has been chock-full of anomalies, it seems.

    Maybe you can integrate all those elements together to create a new Spence Farm dish to commemorate it by: blend some syrup in with the bacon to neutralize the saltiness, throw in some gangly growth from the basement for extra flavour, and whip it all together in tornadic fashion...wa lah!...a springtime dish to remember!

    By the way, are the hawks year-'round residents, or are they more seasonal by migrating in and out of the area?

  3. Good dish idea! It will go with the cracked eggs I'm making.
    The hawks are here all the time, but we aren't seeing them much right now as they are catching little songbirds and mice. That is probly easier than hauling away a heavy chicken.
    And this week is 70 degree weather and beautiful!! Definitely spring time feeling.