Getting Down and Dirty

This past week Chris and I were busy stepping up 1600 small lavender plants into four-inch pots that will be sold at the spring herb festivals and the farmers market.
It’s dirty work and while potting the first half of the plants we managed to stay snug and warm inside the greenhouse, which is your average 10×30 ft hoop style.  Before long there was no more room inside for our special mix dirt-pile (a mix of organic potting soil, wood ash, and sand) as the plants would require nearly every inch of space.  We moved the whole operation outside and finished up working off the tail end of our flatbed trailer. 
The greenhouse is now full and we’ve entered that pre-spring phase that includes constant monitoring the greenhouse temps throughout the day, opening vents in the plastic when it gets warm from the sun or firing up the propane heater when the temperature drops in the evening. 
There is a certain yearning that begins to creep into me when greenhouse season begins.  I think it has to do with the smell of the soil and also to do with the shaking off of the dark season of winter, deep in my spirit. The rest and quiet time I’ve enjoyed the past few months will help fuel the energy that the coming spring requires. While the calendar we in civilized society generally adhere to tells us that the new year began in January, it feels so much more to me that this is the beginning.

While we sat on the end of the trailer working my eyes rested often on the old raised beds that we moved from behind the farmhouse last year.  This year I’m beginning a new herb garden in the old beds somewhere near our new house. (Is it still a new house if it’s nearly a year old?) Last year I missed not having fresh herbs other than what was in the field and a few scattered containers.  I’ve got must-haves on my list, many culinary, but I want to venture out into the unusual herbs as I did years ago. 

Whether you’re a farmer or a gardener or just have a few pots in the window sill, the smell of the soil – the earth itself – can be most bewitching.  I’m ready to get down and dirty again. 

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Contest Winner!

 You know it’s tough sometimes to chose a winner, and that’s why it’s soooo easy just to let the Random Generator do it for me.  Our winner Tweeted about the contest and I liked that even though I don’t Tweet I was able to see her posting about the contest via the link she provided.  Who knows, one of these days I may become less of a luddite and learn how to text, plurk, twitter, or just use my cell phone to do something other than make a simple call. 

the Random Generator over at chose you to win some Porter Peaches yarn!  

Contact me with your snail mail address to receive your prize.

Everyone else, congratulate Polinium and stay tuned – there will be more random giveaways.  

Martha – seven feet from the side door

Devotion or waiting for scraps?

We’re busy working in the greenhouse and will have some photos to share later in the week.  
Tonight we’re attending a Tulsa city council meeting which will discuss the farmers market. I hope we’ll see familiar faces in support of the city closing Cherry Street and allowing the CSFM to move onto the street on saturday mornings. The move will allow more vendors and more room for customers to browse and shop.

The contest is below – scroll down one post.

Porter Peaches – a pre-spring giveaway! – contest over!

With warm weather around the corner and preparations being made to begin another season at the farmers market, I’m jonesing for fresh fruit and veggies. I’m tired of grocery store produce that was picked who-knows-when.  I’m ready for the good stuff.  Corn from Bixby, tomatoes and peppers from Oaks, asparagus, watermelon, blue berries…and Porter Peaches. 
Each July during the heat of Oklahoma people flock to the small town of Porter to pick peaches and celebrate another harvest at the Porter Peach Festival.  It’s hard to think about peaches without imagining peaches with ice cream, peaches with a sprinkling of brown sugar, or warm peach cobbler.
I’ve got a nice fingering weight merino yarn named in honor of the great Porter Peaches grown in our neighboring county. Since it’s too soon to enjoy the fruit, I’m giving away one skein of Porter Peaches colorway.  560yds/115grams
To enter the drawing, COMMENT below with your favorite way to eat or cook peaches and INCLUDE A LINK to somewhere you’ve shared about the contest whether it’s your blog, facebook, or ravelry.  That’s it! 
Porter Peaches
Contest runs through Friday February 26th, 2010, 5pm Lost City time.  
Winner will be chosen by the Random Generator.  US entries only this time.  

The contest is over and a winner will be announced later tonight – right now I need pizza!  

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A new yarn – Portland, 2004

On a trip to Portland, Oregon in 2004, I picked up one of the hundreds of chestnuts that had fallen on the street near our hotel. I’ve kept it in my coat pocket ever since, and am reminded of that trip each fall when I retrieve that coat.
This silk colorway, in turn, reminds me of that chestnut, and like the treasure in my pocket, is smooth to the touch and rich in color.

Lost City Silk
colorway: Portland, 2004

The first online order of this yarn will also receive a copy of 
Piecework magazine’s 4th Annual Historical Knitting Issue.  

Portland, 2004

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A few thoughts on aging

When a handsome man looking across the breakfast table says –
“You’re aging well”
you know it’s going to be a good day.  
Acknowledging your age is part of accepting and embracing the changes.  Whether those changes are gray hair, decreased stamina, wrinkles or rouge chin hairs they are simply part of the process.  I’ve long held certain older women in high esteem.  Women who are aware of their age and have enthusiasm for life, are not afraid of taking on new challenges, and do not hide or deny their age or stage of life.  
There are women I know who in their thirties that despair at their advancing years and speak of being “old”.  Their life is not behind them – only their youth.  And I wonder if I said such things, I cannot recall.  But in short time, I will turn fifty-one.  Embracing the changes of life takes everyday effort to be aware of them, closer inspection of body, mind and spirit.  
Yes, my skin is not as taut as it once was.  Age spots are peppering my hands.  Silver glistens in my brown hair.  I use the rearview mirror for plucking.  Reading glasses are essential.  Wrinkles give me character lines.  I love this decade of my life.

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Blog GIveaway!

 No – neither I nor anyone is giving away their blog but Lazy Kate is celebrating her 100th blog post by having a giveaway – an incredible giveaway!  She’s offering up three skeins of her handspun yarn!  How cool is that?  Knitters, whether they are spinners or not, all know the time, skill and creativity that goes into handspun yarn and we revere all who have the talent to create in this way. 
Interested in entering or learning more about Kate go to her blog!

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Happy 100 posts Kate!
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