Yes, look at the calendar...it is still February! But by the sounds of the creek rumblings, spring melt has begun. The snow on half our property has receeded to reveal the ground beneath, with all the promise of spring on its way....like the first snowdrops!
The boys managed to find an icy patch on our mountainside for a little outdoor fun on some newly inherited snowboards from their cousins. They were out before breakfast but came tromping back indoors rubbing their behinds...they need the sun to soften the ice a little and will try again after lunch.
Huckley can hardly wait to begin guitar lessons in the fall...he is diligently practicing walking his fingers like his big brother. Often, he bursts out with inspired and enthusiastic singing.
Do you remember this post in which Sunshine could be found mostly on her head? I walked past her bedroom the other day and saw her dollies were also learning headstands and it made me smile.
Sunshine is eating up any schooling she can get...and then wants more. We follow Waldorf indications of waiting until the child is 7 to begin formal lessons in letters and in numbers. For my two oldest children, this has proven to work exceedingly well, and they soak it up effortlessly, and then wish for more. Sunshine is currently learning place value with number gnomes after spending some time with Roman numerals and learning her little letters of the alphabet using the wonderful book The Wise Enchanter.
Forrest is working away on fractions and long division, surprising both of us that my artistic, imaginative boy is drawn to mathematics. Because he goes to a local school for two days a week (one day is outdoor acitivities all day), we are working on his math and reading the most lately. Sometimes we sink back into the Norse world of Viking stories, which is such a treat, but often we have a hard time carving out time for this busy, social ten year old. This weekend, Forrest chose to stay home and have some quiet time rather than go on the play dates that were offered...much to my delight!
There was a big build up to Valentine's Day in our home, thanks mostly to Sunshine. Every spare moment she was decorating and hanging hearts and cards and making gifts for all of us. It reminded me how much my children love festivals, even when I have lost some enthusiasm for such holidays. A sort of pulling up of my socks, if you will. On one of Forrest's Away Days, Sunshine and Huckley spent a good amount of time stitching hearts with me...and it reminded me of how much I enjoy just sitting with my children and creating, rather than fussing about in the kitchen or folding laundry. These fleeting moments are gifts to be treasured, indeed.
Huckley requested a photo of him wearing my barn jacket...
The spring melt is coming on full force right now, with the rhythmic sound of dripping just outside the windows from the eaves. It is just about time to plant some lettuce in the coldframe in the greenhouse as well as to start my onions and leeks. Loving the warm weather as much as we are, the sheep are bouncing around the pasture,despite their bellies full of lambies. If you have ever seen a 150lb ball of wool, heavy with babies leaping and twisting in the air, it is an amazing sight to behold. Sheep are very graceful, I find. And their joy is so apparent.
This pause before the spring fever sets in is just the right thing so we can sit with our plans for the gardens and farm and activities that lay ahead. With bare ground growing in patches all around, finding a moment to snuggle up to your faithful friend in the warming sunshine is just about exactly the best thing to do...soaking in the glorious (almost spring) sunshine.
Why I Wake Early
Hello, sun in my face.
Hello, you who made the morning
and spread it over the fields
and into the faces of the tulips
and the nodding morning glories,
and into the windows of, even, the
miserable and the crotchety –
best preacher that ever was,
dear star, that just happens
to be where you are in the universe
to keep us from ever-darkness,
to ease us with warm touching,
to hold us in the great hands of light –
good morning, good morning, good morning.
Watch, now, how I start the day
in happiness, in kindness.