March 5, 2012:  This feels like more of a January day today.  Very cold, lots of snow, but sunny.  The days are so long now, you just have the feeling that spring is indeed right around the corner.   Maureen has been busy planting seeds into the trays these last 2 weeks and with these longer days and with the heat on in our first greenhouse, many of her seeds have sprouted and are already up.  

The Bok Choy, Basil, Leeks, Romaine Lettuce, and Cilantro are all up now, some more than others with the Bok Choy leading the way.  Most seeds have to be in soils of at least 10 C for them to sprout, so we have to try and keep the night time temperature in the greenhouse close to that if we want even germination.  We are planning to build another greenhouse this spring, we actually were hoping to have the base started by now because of the lack of snow but lately we have been hit hard with snow so the greenhouse will have to wait.  Good news to report:  Amy who has been working every summer for us for the past 4 years will be with us again this summer.  Amy is a true outside girl, and there is no job that is too big or nasty for her to work at.  Welcome back Amy!!   CSA applications continue to come in the mail daily, some new folks and many veteran families who have been on the program since the beginning.   Each season we try to modify our CSA applications somewhat to make them more easily adapted to both the farm and to the families.  Wednesdays and Saturdays have always been the pickup days for our CSA families with Thursday being the delivery day.   By far, Wednesdays are the busiest as most people like to save their Saturdays for other things like cottages, vacations, weddings, baseball and soccer tournaments, etc.   This year we are giving them the Friday evening option also for their veggie pickup.  Anytime after 4pm.  This day on March 5, 1916 written by my great grandmother:  "Dad took a can of cream to Stayner, Gordon chored and took some grain to New Lowell to get ground.   The Assessor was here and also two recruiting officers, Harry helped the McKinnons draw wood, Elwood put the gravel box on the sleigh to start drawing from the Knupp place".   Fraser helped ma today."   By the way the "recruiting officers" she referred to in the journal meant that they wanted some of the boys - my great uncles, to enlist in the war.  With conscription they had no choice unless they pleaded their case at the military office in Stayner and signed a "plea of expemption" form along with several well known witnesses.   They had selected Uncle Gordon and Elwood for conscription but both signed the plea and were exempted for 1916.  Both were conscripted again in 1917 but Uncle Gordon did have to join, he went to war with only 2 weeks of any military training, and was lucky enough to make it back home again after the war.

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Close By Barrie & Collingwood:

2904 Rainbow Valley Road
Minesing, Ontario
(close to Barrie and Collingwood)

Thank you for the wonderful stay in your guesthouse.  We had a great time.  You have a beautiful farm and we really enjoyed the animals, especially the kittens.  We will make sure we tell all our friends about your great B&B!

Jack and Barb, Waterdown, ON