I don’t know if everyone is feeling this way or if it’s just me, but I got winter in my bones. All of nature has died or crawled up inside itself, storing its life in seed, bulb, or root. I feel the same way but as the human world keeps spinning on around me; I am not allowed the full winter hibernation that I’m thinking I need.
The kids are feeling it too. Ever more are they attracted to screens like moths to a porch light. They orbit around me hoping that I’ll throw out some grand idea for entertainment. Every day is 15 degrees or lower and my once enthusiastic fervor for at least short daily walk abouts, no matter the temperature, are now finding me in some kind of elastic pants pretty much as soon as I get home from work. My boys usually need me to kick start their nature gusto this time of year and frankly, I’m not feeling it.
Luckily, just in the nick of time, planning my garden needs to be done. What do I want to harvest, what seeds do I need to start and when, when do they need to be transplanted outside, how much scrap lumber do I have for cold frames, where will I be getting straw to mulch, what part of the garden is going to be rested this year? All sorts of ideas for spring and summer projects start to pour from me as a small glimmer of spring birth starts burning.
Now all I need to do is get the kids going on planning their own projects. I’m very protective of MY garden, especially at the fragile beginning stages of plants. But I still want my boys to have a garden experience. So they get their own garden plots this year. No holds barred, they can do what they like in there. We get out paper, gel pens and crayons and they start sketching out their own garden plots. Where in garden will it go? What will you use to border it? What will you grow and where? Why do we do we need to mulch?
Their garden project has them setting goals, using their imagination and looking up information in books and the internet. They are invested in furthering their own education. In a world of instant gratification my hope is they will begin to appreciate the process of achievement.
If you and your family are getting a bit of cabin fever, start DREAMING of spring. Make lists and plans. Use screen time wisely, researching information or looking for ideas. Make a mess on the living room floor of blankets, books, drawing pencils, lists, laptops, tea cups, snacks, adored stuffed animals, cats, and the occasional dog walking across everything. It will surely make it easier to shake of winter’s icy crust.
Stay tuned this week for more spring planning ideas!
See You Out There!