There is still winter left, but I know how quickly time flies and all the work that comes with the first warm days of spring. But first, all the preparations need to be made...seeds bought, seedling flats readied, coming up with a garden plan, spring cleaning!! Last month it was time to sit with a cup of tea and go through seed catalogs. By now, cooler, less dreamy heads have hopefully prevailed and our seed orders were pared way back form the initial run amok visions and finally sent in. This month, with the more tangible evidence of light and rain, I am less a dreamer and more sensible about what will be possible this gardening year--but it still calls for many a cup of tea and a comfy chair to map out the garden and organize the seed packets as they arrive. But, we still have to be patient. As far as our gardens go the outcome of the bounty is going to depend on how the weather goes this month. It is said that "Thunder in February makes for a poor maple syrup year". No matter what the groundhog said, or how anxious we are, a good, cold February is best for us healthwise (in terms of having less likelihood of flu and prolonged respiratory illnesses) and best for our gardens in the long run to control pests, ward off early sprouting/blooms that may then be susceptable to late frosts...and give us one more full month of thinking, rather than doing.