We’ve barely been up in Redwood for 3 weeks now but a lot has been happenin’! When we first arrived, it was winter wonderland…
But after a number of nights huddled by the local bar’s wood stove or under flannel sheets and 2 comforters, a Nor’eastah walloped our peeps back in the city and somehow sent the North Country straight into Spring! First order of business was to help out some folks with their maple sugaring:
Longtime Redwood resident Dale showed me, Nicole, Butch and Chris the ropes at his “hobby” sugar shack. It’s amazing how the whole process works! I was too busy smelling the delicious fumes and taste testing the syrup to pay attention to the details but let’s just say it looked impressive:
When it comes to the collection process, apparently you can now just position a large tank at the bottom of a hill and essentially “mainline” the sap directly from the trees.
Luckily, Dale still had some trees tapped the old fashioned way so we got to run around in the 60 degree weather emptying buckets into his sugaring-equipped ATV (driven by mountain man Craig):
See more photos of our outing at the Better Farm blog.
Besides sugaring, we’ve muscled our way into the Redwood Neighborhood Association (and are somehow on the committee to revitalize the downtown area), had a pro photographer (Erin Covey) come by to take glamour shots of the Farm’s residents and visitors, finalized our amazing Summer workshop schedule, continued in our mission to renovate the place – complete with renting an enormous dumpster for demolition and me spending hours weeding the flower beds – and even managed to rock out to the “house band” at the Dancing Dog.
Hanging around the old homestead doing nothing ain’t half bad either. I can’t describe how nice it is to not hear sirens all day long…to be able to actually hear (and see) nature. And since we restocked all the bird feeders with seed and rehung any bird houses that had fallen, the bird songs are in the air!
On that note, Wednesday, March 17th was the one year anniversary of Uncle Steve’s death. I accompanied Nicole as she spread some of his ashes at one of his favorite bird watching spots up the road.
Everything is different – I am back in nature, involved in the wonderfulness that is Better Farm, have an interview at a local plant nursery tomorrow (fingers crossed!) and am overall just at peace with the world. Hope everything is good with you, wherever you are.