Winter morning chores

Tinkerbell is about to have her calf! Just got back from morning chores- winter morning chores, snowy, quiet, chickadees singing- and still no baby yet, but she is close. She is in the barn with some of this year's lambs, as well as a few renegade chickens and our barn cats, River, Fuzzy, Raindrop and Bone. Most of the chickens are in the greenhouse, their winter quarters, where they can keep scratching in the dirt even when there is snow outside. The chickens' egg production follows the light, and so in December we were down to one egg a day, and then no egg on the solstice, but this morning we are back to one...and that's from forty hens! More daylight, more eggs, so it will only go up from here, but in the meantime we have been getting eggs for breakfast from neighbors who have lights in their hen house.

I walk by our clay oven on the way to the greenhouse, all tucked under a snowy roof, so quiet compared to the fire and bustle of summer pizza nights. These quieter winter days are fueled by the abundance of summer, in the hay we feed to the cow and sheep, the berries we have on our pancakes for breakfast this morning, the memories we carry tucked in our pockets.