Tuesday 13 September, 2016
Monday 5th September
Paperwork day and it’s no very warm. Too early for the central heating but definitely considering lighting the stove.
Tuesday 6th September
Yesterday I was thinking about lighting the stove; today it’s sweltering. All the animals are pechin’; poor Smokey’s sides are heaving. It’s looked really stormy but it’s come to nothing.
More Festival stuff today – all P&W and livestock entries in the spreadsheets ready to go in the catalogue.
Wednesday 7 September, 2016
Monday 29th August
There was a slightly autumnal feel this morning but my, did it brighten up into a glorious day.
Moved the sheep and cattle to fresh paddocks and put a mineral lick in for the sheep.
There’s another Sasso with a bad leg so he’s isolated, as he was being bullied. We’ll have to cull him in the next 48 hours though.
Dan pruned the espalier pears in the vegetable garden. They've got a bit of fireblight damage but should be strong enough to overcome it with judicious pruning. A good crop in prospect this year.
Monday 29 August, 2016
Monday 22nd August
Grey and drizzling this morning but the sun came out at lunchtime and warmed the place up nicely. The sweetcorn must have grown two feet in the last week. Not sure if summer will last long enough for it to ripen cobs though – some of the trees are turning already.
Mak is courting Annie, which is good.
Tuesday 23rd August
Grey and mizzley all day; mild though. Been sorting out the paperwork for the twelve ewes and gimmers I’ve sold. They are going to their new owner tomorrow. I will be sad but onwards and upwards.
Tuesday 23 August, 2016
Monday 15th August
Cool first thing but shaping up to be hot. I let the sheep into a field with better shade – I think their agitation yesterday was due to the heat rather than flies.
Finally managed to submit my Scottish Beef Calf Scheme application for 2016. Payment isn’t made until about April next year; farmers have to claim for any eligible calf born in 2016 by the end of the calendar year, then the pot of available funding is divided up on a per head. I think we got about £150 per calf this April – for fours calves, but every little helps.
Tuesday 16 August, 2016
Monday 8th August
Still windy but calmer than yesterday and last night; bright sunshine and warm though. Turned into a nice afternoon and evening but I didn’t see much of it because Monday is paperwork day. Sometimes I try to get ahead by doing it on a Sunday night, but not this week.
I tried to submit my application for the beef calf payment – it’s had a variety of names – but the system was down. Still. It was down last Monday too. And the week before that.
Tuesday 9 August, 2016
Monday 1st August
Nice day today; mainly sunny but with a bit of a breeze. Monday is usually paperwork day so spent most of it catching up with emails and other bits and pieces. Tried to submit my application for the beef calf premium but there was a fault with the system. Also caught up with some phone calls. Swept out the loosebox, ready for Brian the joiner tomorrow.
Dan was in the orchard after dinner sorting out the windbreaks. I had a look at the trees in the vegetable garden – the Victoria plum is laden with fruit so I’ll have to thin that down. One of the gages has a bit of a crop but the other three are disappointing. One got broken and we tried to bind it together but I think it’s had it, and another had fire blight and Dan had to prune it really hard.
Tuesday 2 August, 2016
So we’ve been on our summer holiday – to Wales. As one might expect, the weather was a bit variable but it was good to learn that Welsh midges are less ferocious than Scottish ones.
We spent three nights at Dot and Tim Tyne’s smallholding, glamping in their bell tent.
Monday 25 July, 2016
Monday 18th July
Summer’s here – for today and tomorrow according to the forecast. It was 22°C on the car thermometer when I went to check the cattle. It’s windy though.
Made raspberry jam and more blackcurrant cordial – bad day for it as the kitchen was like a sauna.
The Caerphilly came out of the cheese press today and looks really good. Can't eat it for 3 weeks though. :-(
Monday 18 July, 2016
Monday 11th July
Today’s cheese making lesson is don’t leave the drying cheese where a dog can get to it. The first cheddar is gone. Not a crumb left. Bentley is No1 suspect by virtue of being a Labrador and having previous food stealing form. Hey ho. A second cheddar is through the press and drying – where the dogs can’t reach.
We have a new-to-us lawnmower – it’s a John Deere and it’s fab. Almost looking forward to cutting the grass.
Tuesday 12 July, 2016
Wallace has finished his course of Pen&Strep and is a right as rain. He was sound after 24 hours but we completed the course of ABs as recommended by the vet.
Dan strained and jarred our honey – twelve jars looking lovely.
He moved the new colony of bees into a full sized hive – they’re looking good – and he gave the newly moved ones and the weak hive a feed of syrup.