They say the winter weather brings depression to people, I would have to disagree with that. I love the winter weather...the snow,the dark gloomy days, the bitter cold that makes you want to cuddle up in front of the woodstove with a warm cup of coffee or tea and a good book. For me Winter is my slow down time, a time to focus more on harder subjects with the children and a time to dream about what plants I want to grow and a time to focus on family time which as most of us know can seem crazy to achieve during planting and harvesting seasons. Winter is the only time I really get to put my feet up, although this year has been a little harder to do so as I have been back and forth to doctors with gallbladder attacks and just when they where able to book a surgery date I found out I was pregnant, then we ended up taking my husbands grandson into our care through a kin program and the stress of everything got the best of me and two days before I was four months pregnant I miscarried, I know these things happen for a reason but it's a hard thing to see a healthy baby's heartbeat and then a week and a half later loose it all. But I'm a strong girl with a farm to run a family to raise and very little time to hurt.
With everything that has happened this winter, I made up my mind to put all my time into planning and expanding our garden. Feeding our children is a chore on it's own, I swear these children never get full. But I am lucky because they want apples and oranges and homemade bread and soup not candy or other junk foods. Trying to plan how much food I need to grow in order to feed a family of twelve is a lot of guess work, between canning and storing for the winter there also has to be every day eating during the summer months to take into consideration. My head hurts at points when I try to figure out how much of everything needs to be planted and then to double it in order to be able to produce enough for market. I am thankful we raise pigs though because any of our scrap vegetables never go to waste.
So far this February, I have started my own sweet potatoes for slips and have started some leeks and many different varieties of peppers. I tried some celery and plan on trying until I succeeded. In the next few days I have a bunch of onion seeds to plant, I have never started onions by seed before so this is one trial I am hoping goes well as onions are a big staple in our home. And herbs oh how I love herb but never have I ever managed to grow everything I require and so this year I have all the seed and the determination to grow it all so not to buy it.
Self-sufficiency is hard but exciting at the same time, it's like being a kid all over again and having a "Hey! I did that all by myself" moment. You just want to jump up and down with joy and show others that it is possible to do it and succeed. For me this year is all about succeeding and I refuse to let anything stop me, I have vegetables to plant, a garden to weed, children to raise and a home and farm to tend to and this year a little bit of me time will be worked in there somewhere or I'll never get to write this blog.
It's February and March is only around the corner, so happily a planting I will go because it's a thrilling thought that a bounty of food can be produced by one little seed.
Until next time ~Jenn