A Walk In The Forest


A truer, hushed feeling

I never will know

Than to walk in the forest

Amid soft falling snow


It rests on the branches

And falls to the ground

An effort of partners

To muffle all sound


And though I intrude

on an old, sacred peace

I can’t stop myself

From seeking release


For all the world has been silenced

As far as I know

When I walk through the forest

Amid soft falling snow




Many Christmas traditions begin inadvertently, without ever a thought given to the meaning it will have in future years.
About 20 years ago, when Mike was very small, we were all baking cookies in the kitchen on a hectic, pre-Christmas day. We heard the first notes of the bells ringing on the random CD I had thrown in the player and something inside of us woke up. For the next two minutes and thirty-five seconds, we all danced around the kitchen with lively, exaggerated dance moves that would put Ralph Kramden and Ed Norton to shame.
All these years later and Lou, Mike, and I never quite feel the Christmas season has begun until the “Jing” CD, as we so lovingly call it, is taken from its case, placed in the player, and cranked to full volume.
Sometimes we surprise each other with “Jing” first thing in the morning, or after coming home from work, or sometimes, after a long, difficult day.
Never once, in all this time, has it failed to transport us back to that first joyful expression of holiday fun and togetherness.
We may be a little more winded after our exertions then we were then, but the way it touches our hearts will always remain unchanged.
Merry Christmas, friends!

All In A Day’s Work


Tom and Jerry were born on Valentine’s day to a less than enthusiastic mother. Since then they have been hand-raised and are being trained for use in educational classes for parties and school groups who visit the farm.

I have the distinct pleasure of being in charge of their leash training.

Of the many different jobs I do on the farm, I’m pretty sure walking baby goats on leashes is my favorite.


Boil That Water Down





P1080781  In a fit of delirium, after 12 hours in the sugaring shack, I wrote a poem set to music, or if you prefer the more popular term, a song.

The tune is loosely based on the old Bluegrass song “Boil That Cabbage Down”, but the lyrics are 100% about my family and me .
The chords are G, D, C, G, D, A, C, G repeated through both chorus and verses, just in case you ever feel like immortalizing us in a poem set to music.

G               D
Boil that water down
C                 G
Cook it till it's brown
G                  D
The only song that I can sing 
   A         C     G
Is boil that water down

Louis was a city boy
Who longed for country life
Got himself a piece o' land 
and brought along his wife

They worked sunup to sundown
To try to make it fine
With deer and Bear and Fox
And an occasional 'qupine


Their boy was big and strappin'
And helped them all he could
By puttin' in new windows
And stackin' fire wood

The Chickadog was happy
But sometimes tried to dine
On the deer and bear and fox
And that occasional 'qupine


One day they got an idea
To make 'em something sweet
They tapped themselves some maples
To make a tasty treat

They started in with four taps
But how the story goes
They tapped into six more trees
And watched the water flow


They boiled it in the pole barn
They boiled it in the yard
Boilin' sap's a good ol' time
The work ain't very hard

Now syrup's on their pancakes
And everything they eat
They looked for miles and miles around
Their syrup can't be beat 


So if you get an inklin'
To do just what they done
Get yourself a piece o' land
And have yourself some fun!


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Boil Them Cabbage Down - The Dillards



Break out the buckets

Go find the taps

Pull on your Wellies

It’s time to tap sap!

Freezing at night-time

And warm in the day

Drill a hole in the tree

And you’re well on your way

To water that’s flowing

Though snow’s in the air

Soon in the shack

You’ll be boiling with care

You’ll sit in the shanty

While big kettles roil

With family and friends

So it wont feel like toil

You’ll laugh and tell jokes

And play some guitar

And talk of the sweetness 

You’ll put in a jar


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  I would consider our foray into the world of sugaring at our new house on Three Bear’s Ridge to be a rousing success. We jarred about 4 gallons of delicious syrup, and had a great time doing it. If the weather holds, we may even be able to get a few more days in the shanty.




Toppled trees decorate the forest floor; fallen soldiers in the battle of the elements

Damp casualties disintegrate and molder

A fine, earthy aroma fills the air

Wild mushrooms, moss, and cozy burrows give life to the dead

A tiny sapling takes root in the peaty soil and turns its tender branches towards the light