The last week in May is what I’ve come to think of as my Spring Sanity Week. Up until that point, I’m usually trying to balance the craziness of spring on the farm with all of the other things I’ve got going on in life (like, you know, my actual job.) But I almost always take at least a few days off around Memorial Day because 1.) it’s my birthday, and 2.) it’s usually right when I’m about to lose my mind from balancing all the things, so I take some time off to focus my attention solely on farm and house projects.
Some years I take the whole week off, and sometimes only a few days… this year was a little bit of both, trying to work half-days to keep things moving at the office while still dedicating a lot of time to my farm projects.
Here was my big list for last week:
I didn’t get to everything on this list (when do I ever?) but the good news is that I got to a lot of the most important things, like #1: Move new chicks out to brooder, and #11: Eat cake.
I’m going to post a lot more detail on these projects later this week, but here is some of the progress from my time off…
First, meet the new additions to Black Feather Farm:
Six new chicks arrived last week, and despite the solemn vow I made to myself about No More Birds in the House, these little’uns spent a week living in the tool room before I got the brooder set up out in the chicken coop.
They’re coming up on two weeks old and already the most tame and curious chicks I’ve had on the farm. Over the weekend they even got a little time out in the chicken run to explore the big wide world (supervised by my Mom, of course.)
Then there were the new additions of a different sort…
The grapevines I ordered a few weeks ago to replace the ones that didn’t make it through the winter showed up. And then I went out to the vineyard and realized five of the vines I thought were dead were actually totally alive and showing new growth. (Except you wouldn’t know anything was alive out here except grass because I was so behind on mowing and vineyard maintenance.)
So, I spent some time mowing, weeding and planting the vines I had room for.
But due to a broken auger on my tractor and limited time I didn’t get to finishing the existing trellises, which not includes creating a third row for these extra vines I have.
I also did a hell of a lot of planting and mulching around the house (with the help of my mom and grandma who showed up ready to work the day before my birthday, and brought wine and cake with them.)
Cake is good fuel for shoveling, guys.
But one of biggest projects of the week was creating two new, full-sun garden beds and the front of the vegetable garden..
For a couple of years the entry to the vegetable garden looked like this:
So I’m pretty excited to have a finished arbor over the entry and a bunch of flowers planted which are both pretty to look at and good for the bees!
And, my birthday present to myself was finally clearing out the downstairs tool room once-and-for-all…
Adding a little paint and rubber flooring…
And converting it into a home gym.
It’s not done yet because I’m waiting for more flooring and some equipment to arrive, but I’m so ready to do hundreds of burpees in this room. (As much as anyone gets excited about hundreds of burpees, that is.)
Overall I got a good start on a lot of things, and finished a few of the most pressing items on my Spring list. Now it’s back to the grind, but finishing the grape trellis and getting the foundation of the greenhouse in are up next on my project list.