Monday, September 12, 2011

Busy as a Bee

The summer heat finally arrived - we've had multiple days in the high-80s and low-90s in a row - and all the plants are growing like crazy. There are hordes of butterflies, honey bees and bumble bees buzzy through our backyard. I know hordes sound like a scary term, but I mean this in the most "action-packed, productive" use of the word.

My volunteer zucchini are growing into monsters. I've had to trail them out into the open area of the garden (where my future green house will be), and into the walking row. They were beginning to attach themselves to son's bike, so we needed to move that out of the way.

The head lettuce have grown fuller and rounder and I managed to harvest all five heads before all the slugs found them. And the potato plants are looking really good. The tomatoes plants (my only two of the season) are growing taller and taller. I'm finally now seeing the fruit grow and ripen. The day after taking this picture, the vines have bent over and are now growing horizontally along my make-shift support.

I need to figure out a better support system for the dozen+ tomato plants I'm planning for next spring's garden...these determinate variety just keep vining. I see some research in my future this fall.

Good tomato...
Unfortunately, the soil I have these plants in had a calcium deficiency (at least that's what all my books say), given the blossom rot several of the first fruits had.

I've been picking off the really bad ones and tossing them into the composter. I figured I didn't want the plant wasting energy ripening a fruit that is lost to the rot.

Bad tomato... =0(
Now I know what to prepare and look for, for next spring's garden. This is the part of gardening that I find so fascinating...that I am constantly learning and surprised by new discoveries.

With all the growth and all the plants blooming, the bushes are heavy and hanging down across the walkway and into the walking spaces. And as busy as everyone is in my backyard, I end up doing a funny little dance and I weave past various plants, trying hard not to knock into the fat bumble bees or interrupt the honey bees. Bob and weave...bob and weave...
Busy, busy bee.
One of several very thirsty butterflies.

I love these little "mini-carnations"
they smell like perfumed cloves.
I'm think that I may be spending too much time in my garden...I'm beginning to see faces in all my plants and produce! Here's one I pulled off our tomato plant. I swear, it looks like one of the characters in the Veggie Tales cartoons. When I went to cut it up for our dinner salads, none of the children would stay in the kitchen! They said it made them too uncomfortable to cut up something that looked like a cross between Bob the Tomato and Mr. Lunt the gourd! 

Off to other chores...planning on canning tomato sauce soon.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Happy Birthday Momma!

Today would have been my Momma's 70th birthday. Three and a half years ago she left her earthly bonds and slipped back home.

I know she watches over me and mine as we all go about our busy days...and rarely does a day go by that I don't have a conversation with her as if she's sitting next to me in the car (but I know the "damn seatbelt" isn't bothering her now). I think about her as I'm throwing in a load of laundry...I think about her as I'm moving around my kitchen pulling dinner together each night...I think about her as I'm tooling through my garden harvesting blueberries, herbs and pulling a few weeds. Some days I feel as though she's standing right next to me saying, "Don't miss that little weed hiding under your lettuce leaf there...."

Sometimes I can't believe this woman is no longer a physical, everyday presence in my life...I feel her with me so strong that I swear I see her out of the corner of my eye. I occasionally hear her movements in my home, which was as much her space as it was ours all those years she took care of my babies and lived in our home during the week. 

As I continue going through my day today, spending time in the office, planning dinner and heading out to the season's first official soccer practice for her youngest grandchild, I will think warm, loving thoughts of gratitude of how blessed I was to have had this woman be such a positive force in my life and the lives of our children. I am the wife, mother, sister and woman I am today because of what this beautiful, kind, funny woman taught me. She was my mom and my best friend. 

Happy Birthday Momma!
I love you.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Summertime - Bring It On!

I've been busy, busy, busy these past couple weeks. Last Saturday my dirt/soil arrived (yay!) and it was waiting for us in the driveway when we returned from a picnic. I donned on my garden clothes and started prepping for the physical work to begin and was so thankful and happy when both my boys came outside and started to help. They shoveled and hauled the wheel-barrel into the backyard where it was dumped and I moved it to where it needed to be. It took a couple hours, but it was great to have it all done, with the driveway clean and washed before the sun went down. 
The Boys shoveling Mom's dirt.
"Smile Boys!"
The weather has been increasingly warm. Unfortunately it's been all over the board as the temperature has risen, fluctuating between 82 degrees (F) one day, and 62 degrees the next. Not only does this reek havoc on what to wear when you're heading out the door in the morning, but it causing our plant starts to not. Start that is. Although I do have to say our blueberries appear to be doing fine, thanks to the pruning and love given them last fall. I believe our crop that we're just harvesting is the biggest and tastiest to date. Yum!

This is what was left after my #2 and #3 realized they were ready. My #3 did help, holding the colander and picking some herself.

Almost a full large colander is pretty good off of two bushes. About half the berries are still ripening. I'm looking forward to when we have all seven bushes are producing at this level. That will allow us to enjoy blueberries for several more weeks.
I moved the sign to the main side of the just
seemed more appropriate given  my new garden beds.
You can see in the below picture that I planted three new Chandler Blueberry bushes along the garden area in between our home and Yia-Yia's home. It gets a lot of sun and just enough of a breeze. I expect excellent harvests in the summers to come. They're small, but they have plenty of space to grow...although the angle of this picture makes them look like they're all crammed towards the fence.
There's 3 bushes total. Small now, but they
should grown fast in this spot.
Almost all planted now.
Walking into the back, you can see that I now have more veggies planted in the beds. For fall, I've planted carrots (not visible yet), potatoes (low green leafy plants on the back left of the front bed), head lettuce (same bed and finally growing some bulk), fennel (second bed), along with beets, bok choy (not visible in the picture), and bush green beans (just beginning to get some height on them (under the metal frame in back left bed). I am always amazed at how warm the earth feels as I stick my hands in. I opened a pack of carrot seeds, and smiled as I poured them into the palm of my hand. The weight was slight, but the warmth they held was a surprise. These tiny little seeds felt perceivably heavier since they were warmed. Like the warmth and energy of the sun had added to their mass, just a little bit. Needless to say, I'm excited, and a little apprehensive to see how everything grows as it will impact what I do next spring.


The front of the house looks pretty with my pots all filled out and blooming. The heliotrope is WONDERFUL and fills the air with the most wonderful vanilla scent. Sometimes it borders on smelling like black licorice. Not being a huge fan of licorice, I just move to the next basket. =0)
Our wedding plaque under the one hanging basket.
I love seeing the seasons come into their own, and experiencing all the bounty it has to offer. Odd as it may seem, it gets me excited for the next season! Fall is my favorite time of year...but until then, I'll enjoy the summer days and spend time putzing out in the yard. There's plenty of time yet to ready for the changing seasons. 

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Got Dirt?

I thought this would be an appropriate title for today's post since I've dug, shoveled and hauled about 52 cubic feet of soil over the past few days. And I've only filled two of my beds - sheesh! But today, my raised beds are officially a I planted by basil in the first bed. YAY! (Now it's a real garden, right?)

Maiden plants - Basil!
It's a little sad looking...all by it's lonesome...but hey, you gotta start somewhere, right? This weekend will be busy with hauling more dirt and starting my fall crop. I haven't determined exactly what my final crops will be, but garlic will definitely be on the list!

My #3 came out to check on my (I think to mostly make sure I hadn't passed out somewhere on the side of the house), and she was just in time to see the frog I found hiding in my empty starter pots. He was a good sized frog with BEAUTIFUL markings. If fact, I KNOW I've heard him outside our living room window - CROAK! CROAK! CROAK!

Our backyard resident
We admired his beauty and then let him "escape" to the cooler, moister underbrush by the lavender. It was fun knowing that we had a sweet little frog in our yard. He's the second one I've seen this season.

Summer in Oregon is still playing games...switching between gorgeous sunshine and rain...oh well, it's the price we pay for green! I'm looking forward to this weekend. Time to spend with family, putzing around the house and yard. Soccer season will be upon us soon, so I'm enjoying our "free" weekends while they last.

Blessed be! And I hope your days are filled with sunshine, health and activities that bring you joy!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

A Hard Day of Work Ends In Happiness

This morning started at a leisurely pace around 10:00 a.m. I was excited about what the day held. I headed out to the backyard and began to get ready for the delivery of my NEW RAISED GARDEN BEDS (yay me)! I still needed to clean out and move the Rubbermaid shed...the last piece of the corner "stuff" that needed to be cleaned up. I haven't been through the stuff we've been storing in there for a few years. Okay...maybe several years...and I knew there was probably going to be a couple of crawly I moved very carefully and gingerly. And boy I wasn't disappointed!

I found her...all 3" of her.
I found quite a large hobo spider under and around some of the things we had stored inside. I say under and around, because she moved pretty quickly once she was exposed doing this start-n-stop-crawl-over-everything-creepy-move thing. I say she because I assume that the larger ones are the females...just makes sense to me somehow. 

So what did I do? I, of course, ran and grabbed a canning jar and captured her. I thought it would be a great chance to share this amazing creepy crawly with the kids. I was doing great until I came across four additional specimens. These spiders, I will admit, died a very quick death. It was pure primal reaction on my part--it's amazing how quickly you can stomp your foot when you're startled! There really is no explaining or controlling your reaction to something at that level of "gut reaction!"

You can see the Hobo Hotel in
the picture on the left.
So the beds arrived - thank you Ben from the Chicken Gardner - and went up under an hour. And wow did they smell awesome! Each board is at least 2" thick of beautiful cedar. 

After Ben finished, I leveled out the ground a bit more and began filling the beds with dirt from my other raised beds. Lots of shoveling and hauling, and I filled ONE..even though it was the smallest of the five beds. Oh well...

My beautiful beds!
There's always tomorrow! Not to mention extra Ibuprofen. But now I'm that much closer to having my garden!
I'm a happy mom. =0) 

Saturday, June 25, 2011

"I'm not sleeping...I'm just taking a little break."

Today was an absolutely GORGEOUS day in Oregon. The kind that make people from all over the world fall in love with our beautiful state. I spent the day nesting around the house...airing out bedrooms, striping beds, doing laundry, running errands. All very relaxed and randomly while enjoying the summer breeze gently move through our home...listening to the birds sings and call back-n-forth...our children play and laugh.

On one of my many trips outside to the garbage can and our outside recycling center, I stopped and pulled a few weeds, filled bird feeders and basically milled through my gardens. As I was walking past some volunteer foxgloves, I noticed there was a little someone in one of the flowers.

My winged little Rip Van Winkle
Now these volunteer foxgloves stand over six feet tall (YES, seriously, they're over 6 FEET tall), so I didn't have any trouble finding this little pint-sized Rip Van Winkle. I thought it was quite a good spot he selected...if fact if I was tiny like he, I would probably hide away myself of sunny lazy afternoons and catch a few winks too! I don't blame him (her?) wanting to take a siesta...I have a lot of flowers in my yard and there's a lot of nectar and pollen to be gathered, carried and dusted along the way.

All 3 different kinds each have a wonderful fragrance!
Another fabulous reason I love my gardens are the different rose bushes I've added over the years. These are various rose bushes that I've purchased, not because I was looking for any particular type, but just because they spoke to me. I am thoroughly enjoying the heady sent of these beauties!

I have a lovely bouquet sitting on our dinner table, and have taken a couple into work for my desk. While I love their fragrance, for tonight's dinner, I will move them from the table as I suspect their perfume won't go well with pasta a fagioli!

Monday, June 13, 2011

They're Here...They're Here...They're Finally Here!

I've been waiting with great enthusiasm for my package to arrive. Everyday I've been checking the front porch and the mailbox... waiting... waiting... waiting! (Who would have thought 7-10 working days would take so FLIPPIN' Long!?) And today was FINALLY the day! I was so excited when I walked in the door and Husband asked, "who got all this bulk mail?"

I love opening up packages, don't you? Especially when you know that something you've ordered is IN THE PACKAGE! I found myself so anticipating opening up the packages, that when My #3 asked if she could open one, I automatically said "no, these are mine" without even thinking. Does this make me a "less-than-ideal" mommy? Well if it does, I guess I'll have to learn to live with the guilt.

My newest additions to my gardening library.
I just LOVE used books!
So I opened them up and laid all my new treasures out on the table...

Oh, there is nothing like the smell of a book... the potential of what is to be discovered... the anticipation of what knowledge is just laying in wait, waiting to be claimed, learned and shared.
I'm so excited about the new information I'm going to learn. =0)

Gotta go now... dinner's done, dishes can wait until tomorrow morning (I promise I'll get up early and do them before heading out for school drop-off and work). Besides, there's a cup of tea calling my name!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

I See the Light at the End of the Tunnel!

Today, just like last weekend, I worked outside attempting to reclaim our yard from the overgrowth of weeds and other invasive growing things (read "nasty blackberry vines!"). Last year was such a wet and cool summer that I completely ignored our side yard. We were so busy with sports and work, that I pretty much ignored the rest of our yard too. Had it not been for Hubby mowing the lawns, and the children pulling just-enough-weeds, I think the weeds would have swallowed the house!

Oh where, oh where are
my raised flower beds?
The last part that I needed to reclaim was our side garden area. Our children have always referred to this area as the "Secret Garden" and has been home to some wonderful, imagine-filled times outside as they played together. So I pulled all my garden tools and gloves and got to work. Some of these weeds were over 5' tall...must be all that Oregon rain!

When I finally got out to this side of the yard, it was already 76 degrees outside - which is sweltering when you consider we haven't yet hit over 70 degrees and it's already June!

But it was beautiful...the sky was a gorgeous blue, there was a nice breeze and I had my hands in the dirt. One benefit I did find in ignoring your side garden for two years is that all the extra plant material and potting soil I'd thrown (read "added") to the raised beds, composted really nicely. 

Nature's health meter!
I was completely tickled every time I pulled up some weeds to find these beautiful wigglers everywhere. And some of them were quite large!

It confirmed that my adamant stance on NOT using herbicides (or pesticides against the spiders) has paid off. The quality of the soil in my beds is far better than anything I could purchase. 

It also explains why this seems to be a banner year for nests. All of a sudden our yard is "the" place to raise a family. It's quite entertaining to see how the different finch, hummingbirds, robins and the other birds carve out which tree is theirs and where they go digging for bugs and worms.

Who says you need a
trampoline to have fun?
So after working for 5 hours, I realized I'd filled not just our yard debris but our neighbors too (thank you Yia-Yia!)! But alas, I found a tool to get the last of our weeds into the bins. This is what I call the "#3-blond-smasher!"

With 60 lbs of jumping energy, my #3 managed to compact the debris enough for me to get the remaining piles in - YEAH! 

So now my yards back under control, and I can begin to focus on building raised beds, getting my greenhouse and organizing my vegetable garden. If I persevere I may still make this growing season (read "if my back and legs hold out").

Volunteer Lavender - the visiting
bees LOVE it!
I do have to admit, there is something about physically working hard, feeling tired at the end of the day, and stepping back and seeing what you've accom-plished. Here's hoping my back holds out! 

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Sweet Smell of Spring!

Common traffic vehicles
Each day as I head out to work I have the joy of driving through the rural part of my community to the next connecting city. It's a drive that I thoroughly enjoy and purposely drive just at or slightly under the speed limit. There are no stoplights or stop signs on this main thorough-fair through the valley. As I drive I take in the surroundings and watch through the seasons as the landscape changes from the browns and dark greens of winter (usually through a curtain of rain) to bright pinks, yellow, greens and blues as spring and summer push their way through.

Cover crop near home...there are LOTS!
The last several weeks I've patiently
awaited the first of the cover crops to bloom...CLOVER! Today I stopped by one of the fields anticipating the picture that I might capture. As I opened my door the scent of the clover was intoxicating. The air was warm and the breeze was gentle and the fragrance of these amazing flowers was simply wonderful! I fully understand why the bees are so busy this time of year.

After taking my pictures and climbing back into the car, dreaming about how good honey tastes, my thoughts wandered to the bee house I needed to replace (darn those curious raccoons!). This bee house isn't for our honey-producers, but for a gentle, solitary pollinator the Orchard Mason Bee (Osmia Lignaria) - check out Knox Cellars for houses and instructions. There's a lot of concern over hive collapse throughout North America and in parts of Western Europe. Regardless of whether its the honey bee or mason bee, hive collapse is an important issue.

Honey is used as a natural alternative to people allergic to cane sugar (the key here is "natural"). Yes, there is always agave (which is one of our family's favorites) but sometimes you simply hanker for some honey.

And our little sting-free pollinators are key to our food production (although I'm sure Monsanto is working on a self-pollinating frankenseed if it doesn't already exist). If nature's little pollinators are missing, that's a major loss in the food-chain, and EVERYONE will feel that one. There are two items that are ensured to increase in value as the scarcity increases - FOOD and WATER. If we don't have pollinators, our food chain will collapse.

So do yourself a favor, buy a bee house. Don't use pesticides in your yard. Plant flowers that have bright, variegated blooms. Then pour yourself a nice glass of wine, sit back and enjoy the symphony of sounds as pollinators and honey gathers flit throughout your yard. I know that's what I'll be doing!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Kindred Spirit Found!

I came across a new-to-me blogger last week and felt like I found a kindred spirit! She is a lot like me...married mother of three (although her bambinos are a bit younger than my brood) trying to figure out how to best feed her clan the healthiest, most nutritional and tastiest food. And she's not perfect and admits it - a character trait I truly appreciate as I try to successfully juggle activities, commitments, obligations and events of my three chicks. 

So if you're interested in a real, down-to-earth, recipe-testing resource, check out her blog: Learning to Live Organically. I also love the fact that she posts information about our food chain. It's important to know where your food comes from, and if possible who's growing it or involved in the harvesting/packaging of it.   

Some of my favorites...
About 18 months ago I made a conscious change in how I shopped and what I eat, and what I fed my family. Yeah, it was difficult at first...changing habits is never easy. And it's been a progressive effort...increasing my knowledge and sharing with others. I'm very excited by the increase in availability in organic options...and that the prices are beginning to (slowly) come down. I'm most excited by the behavioral change in my children. They've always been good eaters (loving their fruits and veggies), but I've noticed their preferences are leaning even more towards the healthier options.
...also some of my favorites!

About 5 weeks ago I joined Weight Watchers. Man, it amazing how working a stressful job and juggling family really aided in packing those extra pounds on! Who would have thought?! (Okay, I'm sure moving down the chronological trail of life is also helping...) Well, I'm officially 11.4 pounds down and feeling amazingly better already. I felt so much better when I changed our food sources, and I feel even better after dropping those first 10+ pounds. I can't wait to see how I feel when I reach 15 and 20 pounds! 

Monday, May 16, 2011

The Passing of an Era

Ahhh...t'was not too long ago when our little bambinos ran around the yard, climbing on the play structure...swinging...sliding...climbing some more. We have officially closed a chapter in our family's history book...and started a new one.

The Play Structure & were it has sat for almost 10 years!
The play structure was sold, broken down (with some help from the ever-patient husband and the two youngest) and toted away today. A wonderful young family with a little almost-2-year-old little cutie pie is now the proud new owner of the former Roe Clan Play Structure.

The GOOD thing is now Momma has the start of her new garden area. Ahhhh...what to do...and how to do it... I think with a sigh. I'm giddy with anticipation of what I can do and how I'm going to set everything up! (Yeah me!)
All broken down and partially loaded into the truck.

First, I want to figure out how to incorporate a little greenhouse. Not a big one, but one large enough to start my seeds in and grow some veggies into the fall and maybe even into winter. I could do a few shelves...have a grow light or two...out will goes the "heavenly" bamboo...we'll reorganize the plastic, corner shed and figure out just how to set up the raised beds and where to put a little greenhouse. And of course, I'll be incorporating a rain barrel...along with my little compost bin...or maybe I'll just get a little worm compost bin and let the worms do all the work. This will help in my overall organic approach to gardening, PLUS reduce the amount of water I'll need.

Sigh...I'm one step closer to my farm life...even if it is in the 'burbs. =0)

Saturday, March 12, 2011

You Are What You Eat!

How long have we heard this little ditty about what we put into our mouth? 
I recall reading it the first time (late teens) as I was chompin' down on a bag of regular flavor Doritos dipped in cream cheese. (Yes you read correctly...and YES this basically went straight to my butt. It would have been faster to just spread it there directly, but definitely NOT as much FUN than eating it!)

As I became a mom and survived my 30s, I realized that what I was eating—and even more importantly what I was feeding my growing family—really would affect us in ways we never imagined. So, as I’ve blogged about in the past, I’ve been moving us to more organic, locally grown, all-natural foods. I’ve been reading a lot of labels and researching what the h*%# those 15-letter words are and whether they really need to be in the food we’re consuming.

I came across an article on Mitch Lipka’s site Consumer Ally and thought, “this is too important NOT to share!” So here is a listing of the “Dirty Dozen” which according to the Environmental Working Group are the 12 worst unconventionally grown fruits and vegetables in our stores. This list is determined after extensive produce tests.

(NOTE: The public relations and marketing “spin doctors” (can you hear the irritation and disgust in my voice?) like to refer to foods grown with genetic modification and pesticides as “conventionally grown.” Whereas food grown naturally as Mother Nature intended needs to be labeled as “organic.” I've coined this logic as "political-logic" because only a politician and lobbyists can justify and see the logic in this one. And, I feel completely compelled to call these idiots out and label them as “spin doctors” as I am a PR/marketing person by profession…and have ZERO tolerance to those in my profession who like to spin the words to confuse consumers. It’s similar to my girlfriend the attorney who likes to call out others in her profession who should have stayed under their rocks and not taken the bar exam.)

Okay, I’ve stepped back down off my soapbox for the moment…so for those of you trying to prioritize your food dollars (and who isn’t?), here’s the list of foods you should try to buy organic if you want to reduce the amount of pesticides you consume each day. And just remember, if you cannot **yet** afford organic, hold on. As more consumers demand organic, the “big guys” will get onboard and start offering it, competition will heat up and prices will go down. 

Buy these foods organically (aka the “Dirty Dozen”) if at all possible to reduce the amounts of pesticides you consume, sadly, scrubbing them will not remove the pesticides.
1.    Celery
2.    Peaches
3.    Strawberries
4.    Apples
5.    Blueberries
6.    Nectarines
7.    Bell peppers
8.    Spinach
9.    Cherries
10. Kale/collard greens
11. Potatoes
12. Grapes (imported)

If your budget allows for more, add these to your organic-only list:
1.    Lettuce
2.    Blueberries (imported)
3.    Carrots
4.    Green beans (domestic)
5.    Pears
6.    Plums (imported)
7.    Summer squash
8.    Cucumbers (imported)

If you want a pocket guide to download onto your iPhone or to print out (for those of us who have yet to drink the Apple®-flavored koolaid), click here for a more extended guide.

So while nutritionists and the government still agree that each unconventionally grown fruits and veggies is still better than high-fructose corn syrup (another ingredients the “spin doctors” are rebranding as “corn sugar”…you can’t fool me I tell you!) or my fav high-school snack of Doritos and cream cheese, this is the type of information we as consumers need to arm ourselves with.

‘Cause remember…we ultimately hold the power…it’s that money in our hand every time we go shopping. No matter how small your income is, you have a vote and it’s up to you to determine how to vote.  If you don’t vote, it’ll be determined for you and then you’re NOT allowed to b%@#ch when the outcome is not what you wanted.

I’m just saying…

Note: I give credit to the Environmental Working Group and Consumer Ally for some of the content I’ve shared on my blog.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

How Blessed is the New Year!

Oh crazy days! I cannot believe we're already halfway through the first month of 2011! Up coming events:

  • Business trip to The February no less! I guess I'll get some snow in my winter season yet. 
  • Birthday for the youngest of the Roe Clan. 
  • Sewing Expo! YEAH! (If there was an organic farming expo, I'd probably go to that also!)
  • Spring break in Disneyland -- is there any better way than spending time with your children in the land of make believe? I think not!
  • Prepping for spring planting. I'm already thinking "how quickly can I pass on our play structure so I can expand the garden and maybe even add a greenhouse?"
As we move into the beginning weeks of 2011, I look at my family and listen to the household activity and think " this really MY family? What did I do in my past life to deserve such a wonderful family? How lucky and blessed am I?"

I continue to dream about being an organic blueberry farmer...with an organic garden large enough to sustain my family's vegetable needs. Maybe with a few farm animals like chickens (LOVE fresh organic eggs) and a goat. I've always wanted to learn how to make cheese...
Maybe this is something I'll drag one of my sisters to learn with me...or maybe my teenage daughter? Hmmmmm.....

I believe that I am meant to be (back) on a might only be in my dreams and imagination, but that's where you'll to find me...moving through the garden, picking produce and pruning plants, followed by a few of my feathered "girls"...sitting on the porch, watching the birds at the feeders...going through the hen house gathering up eggs for tomorrow's breakfast or getting them ready to sell at the farmer's market.
(*sigh*) Such a sweet dream...  =0)