I have a busy day planned, food wise. I’m heading to my local, organic farmer friend’s today and paying up-front for a year’s worth of raw milk and 20 free-range chickens. My good friend, Sara, is having me over this afternoon to plan out my herb garden and I’m doing an on-line search for a giant, hand crank bread kneader. I know I’ve seen one but I can’t find a distributer under any goggle heading that makes sense to me. If any of know what I’m talking about and how I can order one, I would sure appreciate a shout out. I realize that we go through 1-2 loaves of bread a day, depending on how much company we have. Making a batch a day is a terrible waste of propane. I makes more sense to get it all done in one baking day but my arm is not up to all of that kneading. In the coming months, when Ben and Maggie return home, the bread making will have to step up even more. The big bread maker will be a huge help.

More and more, I’m looking at my local food shed. I still need to find a source for wheat and oats but, other than those two things, I can manage pretty much around here. Well, those and salt and sugar and coffee and citrus and Girl Scout Thin Mint cookies. Oh, and olive oil, chocolate and mangoes. The list goes on but you get my drift.

I just put in bulk orders for walnuts, cranberries, and more sprouting seeds. One of my jobs this week is to tidy up the food storage room. It gets cluttered pretty quickly if you don’t keep up on it.

I don’t go to the market very often so it’s not easy for me to keep track of food prices. If any of you notice big changes, could you post it here? While it matters less for those of us with big gardens and a few chickens, it certainly matters for poor people. Bruce works at the food pantry and he says usage is way up. a lot of the clients are the elderly. It gets tough when you have to chose between food, heat and medicine. This may be the year we see community gardens as a growth industry.

Speaking of chickens. My girls a laying like crazy. Apparently, they see signs of spring under 2 feet of iced in snow banks. It was 3 degrees when I got up this morning. Yuck and double yuck! At least the sun is shinning and the forecast looks like the sap will be running next week. We aren’t boiling this year so we’ll make a trip up the street to get a gallon of syrup from my neighbor. I’m going to spend a bit extra and get it in smaller jugs so it’s easier to manage. I sure wish I could get him to sell it to me in Mason Jars. Maybe if I sweeten the deal (alright-a really bad pun) with a jar aof honey, he’ll consider it.