This is exciting news – March is coming! For so many reason I am excited on this bright, very cold January day. I sit in my office at home and realize that my thinking is slowing turning from the dark of winter to what spring brings. Just like I said last week – I know it is many weeks away but there are steps to be taken to be ready for that burst into March. Now is the time to start those steps.
First off March is the front edge of the gardening season in this north land of Minnesota. No, we are not outside in the dirt that is another month or two months away but the seeds for some of our long growing plants will be started. The grow lights will be on full blast and towards the end of the month we might see a bit of ground appear beneath the white layer of snow. So now in the deep cold I need to spread the seed catalogs out and
- review the garden journal from last growing season
- decide what plants I will grow this year,
- what plants I will start from seed and
- what seeds I will need to purchase
- then order them so I am ready
Second, March brings longer days and warmer weather. This means my outdoor walking can begin in full. The long walks, the watching for buds on trees and birds that return begin as this month of March moves along. It means that I can’t just sit here and drink my tea all day. I need to be moving and grooving to keep the muscles in shape otherwise those first long walks end up in very sore legs. I also know that “old” peoples muscle strength seems to disappear more quickly over the winter months and that means spring gardening can be troublesome if we are not in condition. The tasks here are simple
- yoga daily – stretch and strengthen
- walk inside if the temperatures are below zero (which means almost every day since Mid-December – this indoor walking is getting old quickly but I keep doing it)
- get those hand weights out and keep lifting – every other day (this one is easy for me to let slide and then I am so surprised in spring when all my garden lifting activities seems to be so much heavier than I remember!)
The third and very exciting March event is the Slice of Life Challenge – a whole month of writing daily! I love and fear this March event every year and would not miss it for anything! The fear only comes because I worry I will not have things to say, I worry that I will sound stupid or will be repeating myself. I worry about finding time each and every day to complete a post. These worries and fears are often eased by doing just a few things before March arrives. I have found if I get organize before handed I can relax and just write a little every day and by gosh it gets done. So here are my to do writing tasks before March comes:
- remind myself of what works – post it by my computer
- I don’t have to write huge posts – a short post is sometimes as good as a long rambling story with no center
- remind myself that I need to read other Slicers posts for ideas – yes, I always read other posts to comment and encourage but these posts also offer ideas and little nuggets that help me think about my own writing.
- turn to books or quotes as a writing prompt to kick start my thinking – Last year I used bits and pieces from all the books I have about writing. I learned a lot by turning to authors to push my own writing
- Begin my writing ideas list – just like the Picture book idea challenge that is going on right now – I begin a list of possible blog posts ideas. I put each new idea in a draft post with a title (if I have one) and at least one sentence to be a kick starter for the idea. Last year I had 4 ideas I never got to write about so many other thoughts got in the way. So, they are still there waiting to be used. Yeah!!! My list is started.
- I go back and review what I wrote the last few years during March. It is interesting to see what direction I took. I also find ideas or topics I could write more about or topics that I have changed my thinking on. It is always interesting to go back to your own writing and see what you were thinking.
So, on this cold day as I sit with my tea and watch the snow sparkle in the sun I realize that January and February are not slow months. There is much to do and think about. I need to get busy!
Hope to see you in March – writing and enjoying the first thoughts of spring!