The Great March Forward

We're well into spring now, certain that it won't be taken back from us, that no freeze will come to ruin the plants we started so early and so optimistically. It's on. The plum trees have already blossomed, the daffodils are in full bloom, first of my greens and radishes are poking out of the ground like so many weeds. 

Suddenly, it's crunch time. Everything calls us to action. Gotta plant those potatoes, gotta start those seeds, gotta collect those nettles! Spring is all about forward movement. Even the cards know it. 

Only…I can't quite do it. I mean, I'm planting the potatoes and doing new moon Equinox magics and making birthday cards, and cooking dinners and lunches and all that, but I'm not able to really move quickly, be efficient, or even particularly chipper. I'm not quite well. I sleep ten hours a night. It's been going on since January, this time, but if you've read this blog for long enough, you'll know I've been struggling with my health for a while now. 

Luckily, with all this onwards motion, it seems like we're finally getting to the bottom of what that means. 

In the meantime, I've trying to take it easy, stay calm, and watch the world go by. The world is namely turkeys at this point.

Almost all of last summer's late batch of babies seem to have made it through the winter (that's one advantage of an unseasonably mild winter) and are now eight strong, with the addition of some slightly older toms at times. They come by and cleanup after my bourgeoisie chickens, who don't bother to eat all of their scratch. I'm trying hard to resist outright feeding them, but I am throwing out more scratch than necessary. 

The turkeys, not exactly wild, but wilding, struggle with the island's robust human population, our roads, fences, yards with dogs. Their numbers are held back yearly, by the efforts of folks who'd rather kill their thanksgiving turkey in the wild than raise one (insert eye roll here). Originally, they were the offspring of domesticated turkeys, but those turkeys themselves, of course were wild, not that many generations ago. They are the forest fowl of this continent, after all. Perhaps not native to the land (aren't turkeys more of East of the Rockies thing, with scattered populations in the West?), but certainly capable of being so. Frankly, I'd rather have any wildlife trying to make it here, provided it didn't devastate native populations, because wildlife is wild life, the opposite of the domestic, tame life of people.

Their population is small, but clearly they might make it, and certainly they continue to try. I guess I feel like my extra scratch is just about evening the score a little. 

Personally, I'd rather catch the tails of turkeys. Powerful medicine of the woods, especially if you harvest them responsibly. And they really are worthy of their name, looking exactly like the fanned feather crowns of the toms when they're trying to make themselves big.

With nettles in your cup as well, you have everything you need for a spring brew. I know those of you who're long time readers, may have been wondering if there was ever gonna be nettles here again?!?!? The answer is yes, always yes. 

Hopefully I can muster a few more picking trips and to share some recipes with you guys, but in the meantime, remember: if you see nettles anywhere around you that haven't flowered yet, pick* a few. Heck, pick a bunch**. They are food and medicine and the essence of spring all in one. My favorite. My love. Helper, ally and magical, green friend all at once. 

Do not try this at home if you're scared of getting stung...

Do not try this at home if you're scared of getting stung...

I'll never get sick of them. 

While I've been requiring mad naps, and have a rather hectic work schedule right now, we have managed some fun outings with friends. To our favorite beach right before dusk, when the sun is still up and the sand is still warm.

Out to the fragrant woods, which in the Pacific Northwest this time of year, smell inexplicably sweet, pungent like old life decaying and new life leafing out. A little like wild currants and a lot like dirt...

I have also been, at least, reading a book each week, and organized my closet by color. I've embroidered like mad and not written as much as I'd have liked to. My thoughts don't seem to flow quite as fluently these days. All I manage some days are my journals, two tiny notebooks with entries the length of sentences only. I have, however, gotten well-versed in diagnosing certain medical conditions and their natural and allopathic treatments. Books of herbs and energy lines are strewn around my nightstand. 

Right now, I haven't the faintest when I'll be here again. Could be tomorrow, could be next week. Hopefully by then, I'll have a better handle on my energy levels. If not, we'll manage. After all, there's always turkeys.

Take care, eat wild foods, be merry, friends! <3

*disclaimer: Don't poison yourself. Look up all wild foods and medicines in field guides and the internet. That way I can't be held responsible for any mishaps that might happen. Remember, you're a grown-up! Wheee!

**disclaimer: wildcraft responsibly! Pick only what you think the population can stand, provided that you're not the only one enjoying the abundance. Don't pick endangered, or rare species, ever. Remember animals use and need wild edibles as well. And remember: you're a grown-up, wheeeee!