Dirt as therapy

I like it when science proves what I already know: Dirt is good for you. Today is a good therapy day. I slept in late. Drank coffee and unloaded the dishwasher. And have spent a couple hours outside in the garden. Lots of work left, but I’ve got the front beds cleared of leaves, debris, and a bunch of grass poking up. Everything is poking out of the dirt- even the stuff that is usually much later in the season. I suppose everything is thrilled with this 70 degree weather and just assumes it is time. Sigh of contentment. I LOVE SPRING!!

Today the first of my hyacinths are blooming and the forsythia is beginning to bloom. I LOVE IT! The crocuses have been blooming for a couple weeks now and continue. The tulips and daffodils are tall but not in bloom yet. All of the bushes have buds growing. I love spring! It makes me feel so alive!
On another note, the neighbors… the girl across the street (there are two little girls who used to just keep to themselves but now that Elijah is around, they spend a lot of time together and more time in the street than they used to). Anyway, the girl who looks to be around 8 asked if she could shoot hoops on my basketball hoop. Of course, no problem. Moments later Elijah was over as well. And then dad yelling to Elijah (across me basically since I was in my front flower bed) to see if he had asked to use it and to not hit my car. Eye roll. Then there was some altercation I was trying to ignore that resulted in a lot of yelling in the house- dad at Elijah. Then a kid from a few blocks over came by to ask if Elijah could go to the park-no. Then more yelling at Elijah. Sigh. People, your windows and doors are open, the whole neighborhood doesn’t need to hear it. And the lady on her hands and knees in the garden was really hoping for some peace and quiet while digging in the dirt!
Still waiting for me- the dreaded winter clean up of the backyard. Not my favorite task, but it must happen. And if I do that today, tomorrow I can plant lettuce and spinach (sabbath appropriate tasks– no matter how you slice it, I can’t justify dog clean up as not work).
Also, a previous coworker of mine stopped in yesterday to drop off some stuff. He has a dozen 4′ Rose of Sharon bushes that keep cropping up in his yard and I had mentioned that I want a hedge between my vegetable garden and my dear neighbors. So he offered to have me come pick them up in the next week or two! Imagine that! A nice 4′ hedge of Rose of Sharon bushes hiding my garden from the world and giving me at least some semblance of privacy for my therapy haven. I may also see if I can scavenge some forsythia shoots from people so I can intersperse them.
Last but not least, my brother Brendan gave me a chicken kit for Christmas — feeders, an egg holder, a gift card to buy the supplies and chicks, and the promise of a Saturday when he’d come over with Geno (and their tools) and we’d get my old craigslist coop into working order. I’m kind of excited and kind of wondering if I am insane for even considering a couple backyard chickens… it is probably insane… stay tuned. This may indeed be the year for Operation Chicken at the Nichols Homestead.
Happy St. Patrick’s day friends! And Happy Spring!

2 thoughts on “Dirt as therapy

  1. WOW! Very cool…so, the question I keep asking is, what do you do with the chickens in the winter? Do they stay outside and freeze, or do you kill them all in the fall and enjoy home-grown chicken in the winter?

  2. Chickens can survive the winter. You make sure their coop is insulated (i need to do this) and if it gets really cold, you can put a heat lamp out there for them. Although if it is anything like this winter, it won't be necessary 🙂 Basically their egg production slows down when they are cold (I can't imagine why – imagine laying an ice cube!) so if you want them to lay more, you have to give them a heat lamp.

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