Good grief, this winter won't end! It's like some stalker ex-boyfriend sending flowers when you just told him exactly where he could go. Nope, instead of vacating, it's stuck around, deciding a little more attention with snow and extreme wind chills was all I would need to be persuaded. Nope, not this girl. I'm done with this winter. Snowshoeing has been great. Sledding not so much cause it's so rotten cold out. Skating at the old-time, real ice rink has been a challenge too. Like I was saying, time to take a hike, Old Man Winter.
But while the snow stays, I'm getting excited for sugar bush season here. Last year was our first go at tapping Manitoba maples on our place. The sun was warm, the breeze from the south, which combined, made for a great few weeks of daily tap checking. I'd load up the kids and pails in the calf sleigh and snowshoe down to the creek. The dogs would run ahead scouting for squirrels. Looking back it has that warm, golden magic that memories can sometimes hold. Good thing because these frosty days can quash any inkling of warmth.
So, what does this mean for PipCreek Farm + Studio? Why, we're working on new soaps! And I'm so excited about it! Wildcrafted maple sap, birch infusions and our own honey, courtesy of our dear 50,000 girls, will debut in a rich soap redolent with vanilla and spices. All of these will be complemented by oil infusions of Cornelia Bean's own Manitoba Organic Rooibos tea which is a lovely combination of Manitoba blueberries, seabuckthorn, currants, roses, lavender and labrador tea. But we need to wait for the sap to start running, which (Oh! I'm so impatient!!!!!!) looks as though it may be awhile.
Regardless, we have something to help us bide our time. Snow and spruce have the perfect pick-me-up! Snow??? Really?? My thoughts are this, "If you're planning to hang around, well you then best be prepared to make yourself useful!." And so, snow goes into the soaping pot. Take that! Who knows, maybe this will help the snow decide to move along? We can all cross our fingers, right? And along with snow, there will be fresh hints of clary sage, lemongrass, litsea cubeba and a touch of coriander for warmth. The perfect end of season pick-me-up!
The snow may keep our toes cold but there is no shortage of preparing for spring. Our little house is busy with formulas, grand scheming for new ingredients and lines, and of course pouring soaps into their moulds. All because we do believe this long cold winter will pass, leaving a beautiful spring in its wake! So, keep your eyes peeled for a post on the making of snow soap in all of its springtime glory, or so we hope!