Tuesday, March 20, 2012

First Day of Spring

It is the first day of spring. Out side of the window the chickens are still rooting around in the grass.
Sylvan is asleep in my arms. He has been curled up there for the last five minutes, and those are the first continuous minutes of sleep he has had all day. He fell asleep on my hip while I was cooking dinner but refuses to be put down at all. A mysterious fever has been plaguing him, into which even the Dr. had no insight.

Ivory is puttering around in the dining room, setting up a picnic in front of the furnace for her droves of imaginary children and class mates. The toys are steadily spreading out from their shelf on the living room through the dining room and stop at the kitchen door.
I am sitting in the corner of the living room curled up in our blue arm chair – waiting.
We are all waiting for Adam to come home from work. The longer days, often mean longer and often unpredictable hours. He came home late from work yesterday too, dinner and bed time baths were done and bed time stories well on their way before he walked into the door. Tonight my phone rang as I was putting the finishing touches on dinner, and I was told that they had just loaded the tractor on the trailer and then they were heading home. I have no idea what his arrival time will be, but tonight we are waiting.
Ivory has something she wants to show him.
In between school and the afternoon doctor's visit we dirtied every pot we own, filling one with eggs and the others with water, spices, spinach, grape juice, and beet syrup from last falls pickled beets.

(Instructions can be found at Two Men and A Little Farm - thank you, Ellen, for sharing this with me!)
Ivory carefully dropped the hard boiled white store bought eggs into the mason jars filled with brightly colored steaming liquids.

First the yellow ocher of turmeric water, then the strained spinach water, the grape juice with a few squished blueberries, the beet juice and the deep red of chili powder.
I gave up on the strained spinach water, not seeing results as fast or dramatic as I would have liked... and feeling a little silly for trying to dye eggs green when our chickens lay the most beautiful blue and green eggs I could possibly desire.
The turmeric water turned the eggs a brilliant yellow almost instantly.
The grape juice yielded a beautiful lilac gray.
Ivory's favorite were the bright pink eggs that came out of the beet syrup that I poured off of a jar of beets I pickled last fall.

Even Sylvan was a little excited as he shoved slice after slice of pickled beet into his mouth.

The eggs in the chili pepper water we left to soak while I cleaned the kitchen and we all loaded in the car for a quick visit to the doctors office. On our return, Ivory rushed into our house, pulling the eggs out of the chili water and the earthy orange that resulted is beautiful, (but also awfully similar to the color of brown some of our little ladies lay).

Now, there are a dozen colored eggs sitting in the fridge, waiting for a proud three year old to parade them across the kitchen and show them to her daddy on this blustery first day of spring.


  1. Pretty eggs! We're going to try the spice coloring too. :)

  2. Fun project! Very pretty eggs!!! And--waiting.... Reminds me of growing up on the farm and my dad's long and unpredictable hours. And living with a husband who went to work early, stayed late, worked again after a late dinner.... Ah, retirement with a man who is also retired:)Grandma