Slowly but surely the days are getting longer. Yay! I eagerly wait for the days to get longer but somehow, the shorter days always manage to sneak up on me. One day I'm outside riding or working in the garden and it's 9 p.m. and still light...the next week it's 4:30 p.m. and dark outside.
Even just a few more seconds of light every day put me in a better mood. I get home from work and there is still some light...I can at least mess with the ponies a bit before the sun sets. Not enough time to ride, yet, but enough time to at least groom and hang out with them and love on 'em. My soul feels lighter when I can spend time with my beasties.
Kayleigh and I rode Calypso and Chief this weekend and I drove Gabe up and down the driveway again. He was EXCELLENT, turning better, stopping MUCH better. He's developing a nasty habit of wanting to stop to graze instead of paying attention. I really wanted to ride him but the paddock where I ride is a sheet of ice and a battleground of frozen hoofprints, not exactly the safest surface to ride on! One thing after another...sigh. I so cannot wait for warmer, dryer weather!
I'm already planning my spring garden and getting LOTS of input from the girls and Robert. I want to try carrots this year. I've never grown carrots before and I found a really neat mix that includes the traditional orange carrot, a purple variety, a white hybrid and a yellow hybrid. I don't know how well they will do in our clay-ey soil, but I'm going to try anyway. So far we are planning: tomatoes (a couple different varieties), sweet peppers, sugar snap peas, sweet corn, broccoli, spinach, a mesclun salad mix, cucumbers, green beans, beets, watermelon, canteloupe, eggplant, carrots, sweet potatoes and strawberries. Eventually I'd like to have asparagus, too.
We are going to plant two apple trees, two peach trees and a couple of grape vines. I just have to decide what variety to get, there are SO many! The goats finished off my last pathetic grape vine this fall, so the new ones will be fenced so those little buggers can't get to 'em.
The strawberries will be planted in a raised bed that was built last year. My herb garden will be chock full again this year but this time around I MUST remember to freeze the basil! The rest can be dried successfully, but the basil should be frozen.