19 April 2014

Spring is sprung, well sort of....

It's been an interesting winter and spring. We've had such a variety of varying conditions that I find it difficult to say what "normal" is anymore. It is probably the same in your part of the world too.  When I first arrived here in Val Chisone, our winters have been quite mild with never enough snow for me to feel like it was a proper winter. Then about 6 years ago we had a record amount of snow and consistently snowy winters that made me believe that we were back in a normal pattern. Well then we had a few late cold springs and on and on until this winter.  What do you know, we had a fair amount of snow, but pleasantly, it was a rather mild winter over all.  March however, came in like a semi liony lamb and departed pretty much the same as such. In between  we managed to have summery days and mild spring conditions that brought out the flowers and pushed the trees to bloom quite early.

Fabrizio working in the family garden
Wouldn't you know it, but here it is now getting on towards the last part of April and just to make sure you remember that Mother nature is still in charge, we have  enough snow coming down to be concerned for our garden's early coming forth. We were convinced that peas were about the only thing that was safe enough to put in early, but the raspberry, currant and blueberry plants were sadly fooled. We shall see how it shakes out in the end.
Our patio yesterday

Lulled by the seductive spring green and flowers and leaves popping out everywhere, you would think I would be immune to wintery surprises after all these years living in the mountains. 
But no, it always comes as a sobering surprise. 
Poor wild cherry trees

Our side yard this morning. It's already melting out now.
We are both good. This year has seen its various ups and downs with one family member getting well and coming back from a scary illness and another losing their battle with a disease, ALS, that no one should have to suffer through. So it goes in life, ups and downs and sometimes it is hard to find the chatter to carry on with. It has found me somewhat unable to just carry on with subjects of food and recipes, or what we have done that might be of interest to anyone. It's not that I don't have anything to say, but it does seem quite trivial at times when loved ones have such struggles, and losses. But as time passes and grief wanes I wonder back to let you know a little of what has gone on in our lives. Time flies and we carry on with our daily challenges and triumphs, enjoying the process and the subtle joys that lift the day and reminds us of the sweetness of life in all of its tiniest manifestations. On so my life goes. I am grateful for all that I have and all that is shared. You are part of the sharing and I thank you for stopping by and being interested. 
Fabrizio and I continue on with our various on-going myriad of projects, that for me, sometimes seems difficult to see progress on. Fabrizio with his ever growing piles of wood for our heating grow and impress, and his fresh coats of paint to the various parts of the building are noticeable and welcome. I however am tasked with making improvements to our web site in hope of attracting more guests that would love to find us if they only knew about us, and that my friends is is harder to see the progress on. I also keep the troops fed and experimented on with new dishes to add to my repertoire and keeps me absorbed with learning and amused to boot. 

Here's Tom and Fabrizio mugging it up just before Tom goes back home to the U.K. after his Workaway boot camp with Fabrizio.  Thanks for all the hard work blind up the winter wood heating  supply.
Bye Bye to Tom, our first volunteer helper of the season
So, I think it is now time for me to get back to my latest project and that oil be shortening the new curtains for our  little "baita" salon. We moved in downstairs last June, but still have much to do to make it have a more finished feel to it and ready for this coming  season. 

Bella Baita dining room in the original "Baita" (which means rustico in the mountains)
If you have never been to visit with us or haven't been since we moved into the downstairs "baita" part of the building, you need to put that on your "to do" list, pronto.  We, of course, still have much to do, but it keeps us out of trouble naturally and on our toes. We look forward to your visit, new or returning, sometime soon.  In the mean time, we hope you have a blessed Easter weekend with friends and family and a wonderful welcoming of spring with the return of the natures quickening life force and graces. With love from Bella Baita, we wish all of you peace. 

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