Silloway Maple Home Farm

Our Home Farm

See that barnyard fence? As a teenager, I dug the post holes with my Dad. Seems like we were putting in old railroad ties, I’ll have to ask David. The holes were stony, and deep. We had a long, long bar – so heavy, and a long-handled scoop shovel. The sweat ran off Dad’s brow,…

pile of wood shorts

Shorts

Here’s a pile of “shorts,” odd ends and pieces of wood that are not the regular, cut to length, easy to stack firewood pieces sold to customers. Are they pitched over the bank, because they certainly don’t stack at all, sometimes have to be wrested into the stove, and aren’t pretty? No, family use. Same…

September in Vermont

September Mornings

September mornings, always glad for the days before cold sets in and the cows stay in for the winter. How cold my bare feet used to be, on almost frosty mornings when I set out up the hill in total darkness and heavy fog, 5:00 am, knowing the cows were there…somewhere. Stopping to listen, I…

Selling Out

I walked down our dirt road in the cool of the morning, breathing in the heavy summer fragrance of ferns and blackberries. And…cows. Suddenly I smelled cows. Not the strong manury barn smell, but that distinct cow breath smell. And there they were, crowded up into the shade of a big maple tree. Cows…my first…

Silloway Maple Sugarhouse with Barn

Looking Back

I walked crosslots, feeling giddy and free after weeks of recovery from a traumatic injury, that damaged not just my hand, but my sense of independence. Took some time to get past that fragile state, where sudden bouts of crying and startled jumpiness prevailed. Alone I went down across the field, held my shoes high…

boys on a pond

The Farm Pond

“Look at this big crack!”, I said to the boys. It extended clear across the pond. “Never come down here without a big person,” I admonished, many times. We scribed out a Fox and Geese pattern while David plowed off a hockey rink. In our attic is a pile of skates, size small, double runner, on…

Crosslots-itis

Crosslots-itis. A day in the sugarwoods, and I’ve got a case of it. One of the woods stands on a nearly vertical plane, with one main line running up the center, and others coming off it to the sides, horizontally across the mountain. The smaller lines that I was working on go up, from tree to…

February 13, 2014

Welcome to my world…Paul started tapping this morning at 6:00, with his headlamp, and headed home tonight at 6:00 p.m. That’s a day and a half, in the steepest neck of the woods, and snow coming down relentlessly. Mare and I worked together. The silence was punctuated with laughter when each time I slipped and…