Nothing but time

Apple tree waking up

Pure silliness. Egged on by the promise of a plan-free weekend with clear weather, we started a mental to-do list on Saturday morning, once again blind to the difference between the time it takes to say a task and the time it takes to do it.

No matter. It’s a spring weekend. We’re beguiled by opening day at the Farmers Market, warm sunlight, a chance to drive with the car windows down, chorusing morning birds, extra minutes of daylight, and nothing pressing on our calendar. We can do what we want!

So we did. After morning chores, we sped off to the Farmers Market, bustling and busy even this early in the season. We met a six-day old Boer goat, we bought apple turnovers, we bought and ate the most wonderful pierogi I’ve ever had, then we went back and bought and ate some more.

Then off to the co-op for supplies for the various cooking projects we had in mind (tamales, slow-smoked ribs, mini quiche), then a quick stop at a consignment clothing sale in the next town over.

Home again, put the groceries and market treats away.

Visited the bees! This time we were looking for evidence of eggs and we found them. In the black frame cells, you can see small white lines, like grains of rice. Those are eggs. In other cells, there are curled larvae, the next stage. Other cells are waxed over: capped brood. This is where the fed larvae grow, until they emerge as fully-formed bees in a couple of weeks.

This is exciting. Seeing all this evidence of soon-to-be bees means the queen is healthy and doing her work. We haven’t seen the queen yet (since we put her into the hive in her cage), but we know she’s there and we’re hoping to spot her when we next open the hive.

M also noticed at least one worker with full pollen sacs (see the bee with bright yellow “saddle bags” in the middle of that second bee photo?). This means they’re starting to forage out in the world and will become less dependent on our sugar water and will be bringing back wild pollen and nectar. Bee happiness.

On a roll now, we decide to open the goat-milk cheddar that’s been aging in the cool basement since early January and we deem it quite acceptable.

The weekend rolls on and into Sunday. The cooking projects invade the kitchen and the Egg on the porch. We’ve got tamales and ribs in the works, yes. And a new batch of cheddar culturing. And a small pot of rhubarb jam bubbling down to sticky sweetness on the stove. And M saw some beautiful bluefish at the co-op so, after a day of drying in its rub on Saturday, that’s now smoking on the Egg. Meanwhile we’ve promised to make several dozen mini goat cheese quiches for H’s elementary school’s annual Medieval Festival (if you live around here and have kids, you really need to go. It’s a blast and we’re fairly sure that it won’t snow this year…)

At some point, late afternoon, H is at rehearsal for her school’s spring musical and M and I are whirling around the kitchen, busy as bees, laughing at the ridiculousness of how much we’ve taken on, the sink piled high with dishes, every pot used, the oven cranking away.

It’s crazy, exhaustingly wonderful.

By dinnertime, we’re running out of steam. We’ve made all the food to eat (plus a tamale pie, plus other things I can’t even remember) and have just enough energy to pile the plates, open a bottle of prosecco, and fall onto the couch, where we watch Audrey Hepburn in “Wait Until Dark” while the evening drapes darkness around the house.

There are still dishes to do, books we were going to read, blueberry bushes we were going to buy and plant, photographs to take, things to write, things to plan, more lists to make.

Ah well. Maybe next weekend.

FarmersMarket

Starting the smoker

Eggs! Larvae! Capped brood!

Full pollen sacs

Clothbound goat milk cheddar

Clothbound goat milk cheddar - disrobed

Clothbound goat milk cheddar - paste

5 thoughts on “Nothing but time

  1. Rebecca, I love to read your life like this. Thank you for more wonders. And all that good cooking and eating.

    • I really need to write a post that talks about the other reality (whining dog, sleepless night, dirty floor, microwaved leftovers for dinner….)

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