Diary

October 2008RSS feed

Busy hens and a dead chick

Thursday 16 October, 2008

by Rosemary at 8:36pm in Poultry 2 comments Add your own

I'm on holiday this week so I've been taking advantage of the good weather today to do some weeding. We had a border made along the pig pen fence this year - I love the pigs but I don't necessarily want to look at them ALL the time. We're going to plant a hedge of Scotch roses; the plants should be with us early November. I picked them because a) they are the right height, b) they have scented flowers and c) they have black hips; the latter two should make them quite wildlife friendly. They are also quite prickly, which (hopefully) will deter the pigs from messing with the hedge (it's on our side of the fence not theirs). I'm hoping that it will be well established before the next batch of pigs arrives in Spring.

Wool

Thursday 16 October, 2008

by Rosemary at 9:02pm in Sheep 0 comments Add your own

We got our wool back from Diane yesterday. It really is lovely; it's so soft and not at all scratchy. I'm really looking forward to getting it knitted up. I think there will be enough for a jumper for Dan and a gilet for me.

Ryeland Wool

I think I'm going to try making a rug with the other two fleeces using a peg loom. There's no market for the fleece, and while I've just treated shearing as a welfare issue rather than "for profit" (break even would be nice), it would be good to do something useful with the fleeces, especially as they are such lovely colours. And it will keep me busy throught the long dark nights!

Linford

Monday 20 October, 2008

by Rosemary at 8:09pm in Dogs 0 comments Add your own

I'm feeling quite sad. Our neighbours' dog, Linford, died last weekend. He was 12; a Weimaraner whose bark was definitely worse than his bite. I don't think he HAD a bite - he was even on good terms with the local bunnies. He was, however, a great watchdog, spending most of his time, and certainly all daylight hours, on guard, alerting us to any comings and goings along the road. He lived here before us; when I came home, he would rush out barking, then follow my car along to our house for a biscuit. It's really strange to drive along the road and no Linford. His owners found him dead in the garden, after he had asked to be let out last Monday night. He seems to have had a stroke. Their daughters have known Linford for more than half their lives; the whole family are very sad, but comforted, I think, by the nature of his passing. The road just won't seem the same anymore.

Chip

Monday 20 October, 2008

by Rosemary at 8:32pm in Poultry 2 comments Add your own

I don't think Chip is very well. He seems a bit lethargic, so I've kept him in today (in the broody coop / sick bay) and put him back in the little ark and run tonight with five of the Cream Legbar hens. I'll keep them all in tomorrow and worm them, just in case, and see how he goes. I hope he's OK.

I don't think he's being bullied by Hector - Hector seems to ignore Chip completely. Maybe he's upset at having a wimpy name - when we named Hector, I wanted to change Chip's name to Lysander, but Dan wouldn't let me.

Meg's accident

Monday 20 October, 2008

by Rosemary at 8:37pm in Dogs 0 comments Add your own

On Saturday, Dan and I took both dogs for a walk. Meg loves to play with a stick or ball, and Dan's got into the habit of playing "baseball" with her i.e. he hits the ball with a stick to make it go further (sometimes!). As we walked up the field, he swung at the ball just as Meg jumped for it. The noise she made chilled my blood - I truly thought he had brained her. She dropped like a stone and put her paws over her nose. Dan was distraught. After a few minutes, the noise stopped and Dan looked at her muzzle - he thought he had broken her jaw. In fact, her gum was bleeding a bit. A few minutes later, she bounced up, grabbed her ball and threw it at Dan's feet. And that was her! We've checked her teeth and all are sound; she ate her dinner on Saturday night and seems none the worse for her accident. The "bat" is now firewood, though.

Sheep worm count

Monday 20 October, 2008

by Rosemary at 8:43pm in Sheep 0 comments Add your own

I'm trying to use a few chemicals as possible with all animals. We don't have a huge amount of land so clean grazing is difficult. I started off using Verm- X herbal wormer for the sheep, then decided to have a regular worm egg count done instead.

The first one I had done in July showed no eggs at all. When I sent one off last week, I was a bit concerned as the sheep from next door come round and they look a bit wormy - at least they have really dirty bums, which I think is a sign of worms. However, I'm glad to say that the count has come back with no eggs visible.

Pork fillet

Monday 20 October, 2008

by Rosemary at 8:49pm in Recipes 1 comment Comments closed

When we got our pig back from the butcher, there was a lovely piece of pork fillet included. We had it the other night, with roast potatoes, runner beans and peas - all our own produce. Most satisfying!

Dan stuffed it with a mixture of white bread crumbs, sage, thyme, onion, butter, lemon and egg, wrapped it in streaky bacon, glazed it with honey and mustard before roasting it. It was really delicious.

Stuffed pork fillet

Kidney

Tuesday 21 October, 2008

by Rosemary at 8:50pm in Recipes 2 comments Add your own

I like kidney. I also like liver. I've never tried any other offal. Dan doesn't like either. His family must have been posh. Given the above, I eat kidney and liver when Dan's away on business.

Now, I'm not a great cook. I like baking but cooking kind of stresses me. I can follow a recipe, and I love eating good food but I'm not what you would call a "natural cook". Dan's the cook in our house. I also hate wasting food - good Scottish Presbyterian upbringing, you see. Thrifty.

Tonight I had a bit of a challenge. I took lambs' kidney out of the freezer yesterday; I had to cook it tonight and I couldn't find a recipe that didn't need things I didn't have. So I made one up!

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