Next week holds the first day of spring.
I am sooooooo excited, not that we really have a reason to be seeing as our winter has barely lived up to its name and reputation.
But still I am excited.
This time of year brings out the best and the worst in me.
I have a knack for getting really, really excited about something — like couponing, for example — and then obsessing for a while until I fizzle out, crash and burn and barely even remember the reason I began something in the first place.
See, I love to plan. I love lists. I love lists for my lists. And this time of year makes me crack open the hatchery catalogues, research different chicken breeds, lay out miles and miles of gardens (in my head and on paper) and create work lists for whipping this farm into shape.
But then reality hits.
Chicks are A LOT of work.
A garden is A LOT of work.
And after all that work, accomplishing those projects I couldn’t wait to complete don’t even motivate me to create a new, more toned-down list of to-dos.
So with all this in mind, I am trying VERY hard not to be the maniac I typically am this pre-spring time of year.
Yes, my notepad is filling up with dreams of new breeds of pullets and the plans to make them more money efficient, etc., and I have compiled a HUGE list of gardening projects, but I am tempering it with the cold reality my now five years of farm experience have rendered me.
We aren’t going to buy any meat birds this year, but I can’t hardly WAIT to try out a few different laying breeds I have been reading about. As of right now (my chicken order has changed nearly every hour for the last week), I want to try Austra Whites (a mix of White Leghorns and Black Australopes), Black Sex Links and Cinnamon Queen. All of these are touted to be MASTER egg producers. Can’t wait!!!!!
In the garden this year, we are going to try to save money by raising nearly everything from seeds, possibly heirloom seeds (still researching this). I also want to try pole beans rather than my usual bush beans because the prospect of harvesting standing up rather than hunched over makes all the downfalls of the varieties seem worth it.
Other things on my never-ending new-to-the-garden list include: popcorn, pinto beans, pumpkins, medicinal herbs and okra — see, I am crazy!
Along with the chickens and vegetation, another priority is training our dogs NOT to chase and then chew on and ultimately murder our chickens. This will probably be the largest undertaking and will almost certainly constitute a column of its own.
So, until my pre-spring dreams come to fruition (or demise) and my dogs have stopped “playing with” the poultry, I will keep up with my tempered and toned-down, non-psychotic lists.
What’s on your lists for spring? E-mail your plans or tips to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.