Well, the sun is shining this morning and it's 2 below 0 -- more in keeping with the season than the temperature has been these last few days. More snow is expected by this afternoon. Tom bought in some more wood yesterday so we are ready for it.
Today is baking day for the holiday dinner tomorrow. I like to cook a day ahead because the flavors of the food cooked have time to mellow. Tom is baking bread rolls in his bread machine, and later I will make a pineapple upside down cake in Great-Grandma's cast iron skillet and black-eyed peas, of course, for good luck. Since everyone is supposed to be on some sort of diet restriction, our meal will be much simpler than in the past. We will have ham, mashed potatoes and gravy, green bean casserole, cranberry sauce, bread rolls, and the upside down cake for dessert. My dad is coming over to eat with us and I am sure we will have a nice day. The only person missing will be our soldier girl in Afghanistan.
After tomorrow, it's back to work in earnest. I will get back to cutting wood posts and getting the poultry housing in order. Yesterday Eddy and I started shifting stuff around in the basement so I can put together the brooder. And last night I ordered more seeds from Baker Creek and blueberries, hops, sweet potatoes, and grapes from Miller Nurseries. I still have my Fedco and St. Lawrence Nursery orders to send. Mostly herb seed from Fedco this year, and from St. Lawrence I think I will get some sumac to plant on the berm out next to the front driveway, two more Golden Spice pear trees and two apple trees -- one Northwest Greening and one Honeygold -- for the expanding orchard area in the field. I hope I am more successful this year in starting the herb seeds! I am really looking forward to creating a nicely filled medicine wheel herb garden. The hops section should take off this year, too.
On one of my Yahoo lists there is a thread running where people are listing their top 5 projects to complete for the coming year. Easier said than done when it comes to projects! You just never know what will happen. With that in mind I would like to: 1) tighten up the fence and finally build a good gate for the field; 2) get the well put in the field (haven't managed to get that done yet but I am still positive imaging it); 3) succeed with the free-range poultry and egg production trial; 4) improve succession planting and increase general veggie production; and 5) finally build a garden storage shed so we can park the van in the garage again.
New veggies for this year include Turkish Orange, Pandora Striped Rose and Malaysian Dark Red eggplants; garden huckleberry; wonderberry; Senposai greens; Golden Self-Blanching Celery; Golden Giant Amaranth; Philadelphia and White Ice Box radishes; Navet Des Vertus Marteau turnip; ground cherry husk tomato; Rouge D'Hiver, Rouge Grenobloise, Dark Lollo Rossa, and Paris Cos lettuces; Giant Musselburgh leek; Snowball cauliflower; for tomatoes there will be Vintage Wine, Italian Tree, Brandywine Red, Large Red, Lemmony, Green Gage and Indian Moon. And, of course, I will have my usual veggies. I think this will be a great year! (And if Tom doesn't plant his garden area over by Dad, I'll fill that up, too! ;)
May everyone have a safe and happy holiday, and may 2009 be a better year for us all!