The other night, after my husband and I had collapsed into bed exhausted from another busy day, I laughed as I asked him if he could imagine what it would be like to be bored- to have so much time on your hands that you actually wondered what you could do to occupy yourself.

Perhaps there was a time in our lives when we got bored. When we were teenagers, I guess.

Definitely not now.

Now, there aren’t enough hours in the day, nor enough hands to get the work done. There is always more to do. More planting. More harvesting. More weeding. More washing. More teaching. More cleaning. More building. More tending. The work is never ending.

It’s a wonderful thing to never be bored. I think it keeps us content.

As I sit here typing, my feet are smudged black with soil, my back is glowing from too much sun, and I’m sure I stink to high heaven. But I’ve gotten a lot done, and for that I’m pleased.

radishes
The garden continues to come along. I harvested the remainder of our radish crop a few days ago. They were getting big, and I didn’t want the flavor to be spoiled. After trimming the greens (which are edible, but I ended up throwing them to the chickens), I washed and quartered the radishes and tossed them with olive oil and sea salt. After roasting them at 375* for about 30 minutes, they were tender and delicious. I took them to a potluck with some friends, all of whom had never heard of roasted radishes, and all of whom enjoyed them.

grapevines
For the next few days I’ll be working on mulching around our fruit trees. I had a big truckload of leaf compost mixed with manure, sand, and saw dust brought in, which I’ve been spreading around our plants (and tilling into the soil). It really does make a huge difference in your plant’s health when you suppress the weeds and keep the ground moist around the roots. The grapevines especially needed it. I planted hyssop, which I grew from seed, underneath the grapes yesterday. It’s supposed to be a good companion plant. I think it’ll look nice also, once the plants are larger and the flowers are in bloom. If I can keep the kids from trampling them in the meantime.

pear tree
This Spring I’ve planted several new fruit trees and bushes. One plum, two pears, three Nanking Cherry bushes, a Hardy Almond, two Pawpaw trees, a Maypop vine, two Hardy Kiwi vines, a dozen blackberry bushes, one Goji berry bush, three Quinces, one Medlar tree, three Rosa Rugosa bushes (for rose hips)… and yesterday I ordered two Honeyberry bushes. So far most of them are doing well. I think the Kiwi vines and the Maypop were killed in our last frost, but I’m holding out hope for signs of life.

Besides gardening, I’ve been going through a major purge of stuff again. Hand washing clothes has taught me a couple of things, one of them being that we have WAY too many clothes! I’ve been thinning down our wardrobes, and even going through the clothing in storage and weeding out what we really don’t need. I’ve also deemed it unnecessary for anyone to be wearing socks now that the weather is warm. Sandals and flip flops have replaced tennis shoes in an effort to save me from having to wash a billion little socks every week.

Silly girl
Xia makes sure I never run out of dirty laundry, lol!
I’m also packing up the majority of the kids’ toys and putting them up in the storage building. I’m tired of toys being everywhere, and who needs them when it’s so beautiful outside anyways?! The kids have been enjoying catching frogs and crayfish in the creek, building forts in the woods, riding bikes, and just plain getting down and dirty. I doubt they’ll even miss their toys.

Mama Hen
We had six new baby chicks hatch out a few days ago. They’re so sweet. Their mother is very good natured, so we’ve been able to hold them a little. The kids are always thrilled when we have new babies. So much fun.

Outdoor Kitchen
Jerry has been hard at work building an outdoor kitchen porch for me. Every day when he gets home from work he gets a little more done. When he’s finished screwing up the wood, I’ll stain it all a dark, natural wood tone. I’ll post more on it when it’s completed, but we all love it already. The kids have found it to be a nice, shady place to play; I can’t wait to get my wood cook stove out there.

I’ve been running into a lot of snakes lately. Thankfully, they’ve all been black snakes. I found two in the storage building as I was going through the kids’ clothing. And Jada found one in the woods the other day, stuck in some netting. I got a hold of it behind its head, and used scissors to cut it free, but unfortunately it died a little while later. We all felt really bad about that. I don’t mind the snakes, as long as they aren’t in the chicken coop.

Elias 5-5-14
We celebrated Elias’ 3rd birthday on the 9th. It never ceases to amaze me how quickly time flies. This photo of him in his John Deer PJs and his farmer’s tan cracks me up. He’s such a sweet and silly little fella.

I guess that’s a sufficient update for now. I love these busy days. Boy do we sleep well at night!

What have you been up to in your neck of the woods?