Saturday, November 10, 2012


Morning. Fussing in the kitchen. The compost pail needs to be emptied. I step outside. Wow! Where did this come from? What a glorious day! With promises of sunshine and bursts of warm wind. An exhilarating moment as I realize that there is no work, nothing that needs to be done today. Ed! Outside! Come look!

I'm thinking we ought to hike. He rifles through possible hikes, trail building, seed planting… But as we talk about the possibilities, I mention to him that on my walk to the compost heap, I sidestepped to the back of the farmette. For the fine morning view.

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fields to the north

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milkweed seed pods

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ever blooming pansies by the farmhouse

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and of course, the farmhouse

And I saw, to my dismay, that many of the invasive honeysuckle shrubs -- the ones we so meanly hacked away at last spring -- have sprouted once more. Despite the careful dabbing of Round-Up. We take a walk together toward the back and as we look around us, it becomes clear that we shouldn't put our efforts to prairies elsewhere: we have our own overgrown prairie to put in order.

But first there is breakfast...

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...and yoga with my yoga buddy. (It's so good to share yoga with a friend! You can do it alone, but going at it with a friend on the mat at the side is special.)

At home, Ed and I get to work.

We need to snip off those new honeysuckle branches. And there are a lot of them. If we keep at it, they will eventually disappear. So they say on the Internet.

But I'm not complaining.  Farmette work never felt so solid and rewarding! I shake off the sweatshirt and feel the sun on my bare arms again. In November!

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We pause for lunch. Over a peanut butter sandwich we confront yet another issue -- one that we've tabled for too long (only because there is no great and easy solution). We need to protect the orchard we planted last spring. Several of the small fruit trees are already irreparably damaged by deer. If we don't act now, we may ever to see an apple, cherry or pear. (To say nothing of our blueberry patch behind it.)

Ed has toyed with several possible solutions and we try to erect one, around just one tree.

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There's a lot of laughter (laughter is so much more pleasurable than frustrated groans and exclamations) as we dig the poles in and watch the tubes, wrapped in deer netting, sway with the wind. It may work, but I can tell that Ed's not satisfied. And so we let it rest for now. It's something to mull over. To revisist tomorrow, or another time.

We have one more task that we can do before the sun disappears for the day: we'll move the seemingly hundreds of stones that Farmer Lee has taken out of the field. We'll load them onto the Deere trailer. Clearing the space will allow for an extension of the farming field someday. At the very least it'll tidy up the back strip of farmette land.

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It's a Herculean effort to get all the stones onto the wagon, but we do it just as the last wisps of sunlight disappear behind the clouds at the horizon.

The barn stands in shadows now. The light fades.

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There isn't much to be said about dinner this evening. We have scattered leftover that Ed wants to pull together into a meal. My ambition runs only toward adding roasted brussels sprouts and scrambling eggs.

But what a day this has been! Of course, at the moment we're both rather stiff and I'm barely awake. Still, I listen to the terrific gusts of wind outside. I know they'll eventually usher back in winter air. Today was a gift. A brilliant gift.