Tuesday 1 July, 2014
Well, Day 3 (Monday) was quite interesting.
I milked Annie for the first time. The delay (her calf is a month old) was because I couldn't get my head round the logistics, but thanks to a prod from Sally in't North, I got my bum in gear. Annie was very good, I reckon. Her two front quarters are much easier to milk, being larger and more accessible, than the back ones so I might leave them for Rosie (the calf). The other problem is that I'm not the most dextrous peson in the world - and my left had is really just for decoration :-( Still, I'm sure if I persevere, I'll get better.
Wednesday 2 July, 2014
Yay! Day 5 of the July Project and it's only the 2nd! Needless to say, "the plan" is undergoing some adjustment :-)
The new guttering for the barn extension is coming on Friday (our neighbour has a roofing company so he's getting it for us at a good price) so putting it up is now Friday's job. Dan's sorted out sleepers for the IBCs to sit on BUT plumbing them in will have to wait until the contactor has been here to concrete the floor. Phone call for me to make in a minute :-)
Friday 4 July, 2014
Day 6 (Thursday) was about bringing our forty sheep home from rented grazing. OMG, how did it get to be forty? We've got a sheep course here on Sunday and it would be poor if we had no sheep here.
Took us three trips, but it all went smoothly. Before we brought the last group home, we moved Storm, George and Charlie into a fresh paddock where they are up to their bellies in grass. It's only six weeks until we bring Storm back to run with the cows. Tempus fugit :-)
Other than the sheep transporting, Dan did some general tidying up, cut the grass and so on before taking time for some well deserved relaxation, with Tess, Felix and Blossom.
Tuesday 8 July, 2014
Been a few days since a diary entry - it's now Tuesday and the previous one was Thursday. I can't remember what we did on Friday - some general tidying and preparation for the weekend's courses, I guess. We had an Introduction to Smallholding on Saturday and a Sheepkeeping for Beginners on Sunday. We enjoy doing courses - we've met a lot of lovely folk and many of them keep in touch through TAS or by coming and saying "hello" at the Festival and other events.
We have lodgers! Max and Dudley, my chum's two Labradors, are here for two weeks while she's on holiday. They're lovely dogs - well mannered and friendly - but those tails! And they're just at Meg's head height, poor wee soul. They wouldn't bat Tess with their tails - well, maybe once.
Friday 11 July, 2014
OK, I've now lost track of the days :-)
Wednesday, we split off the seven gimmers, Crovected them and took them up to the bloke we buy our hay and straw from. He's fenced off a nice wee paddock for them and his youngest laddie's going to keep an eye on them for us. It's a bit long, so he's going to top it as well. It's a good sheltered paddock so I might winter some sheep up there too.
No idea what we did the rest of the day, but we were busy. I milked Annie; she's very good but I could get zilch yesterday. She was much better today and I'm going to try making some soft cheese tomorrow.
Wednesday 16 July, 2014
Well, the daily posts have certainly fallen by the wayside and I have no idea what's happened to the weekend, Monday and Tuesday.
Well, actually, yesterday was easy. It was my birthday, so we had the day off and went for lunch at Pig Halle in Perth. If you get a chance to go, do. The food is very good - but best to book to avoid disappointment. I had lambs kidneys in a mustard sauce to start, followed by braised pork belly, pakchoi and rice, then a blueberry, vanilla and raspberry mousse affair. Dan had pig's trotter in filo pastry with hazlenuts, followed by the chef's wee selection of desserts and coffee. Then we popped round to the attached deli for some walnut bread and some macaroons. Yum.
Friday 18 July, 2014
Tomorrow is Kirriemuir Show, which is our local agricultural show. At the moment, the weather forecast isn't too promising but hopefully it will improve in the next 24 hours :-) The show was cancelled three years ago and it cost them a huge amount of money - hard to recover from that but they have.
We're taking Annie and Rosie; they're entered in the "Other Native Breed" section of the cattle show. Last year, the "Other Native Breeds" were combined with the Aberdeen Angus, which didn't go down very well but to be fair to the organisers, the previous year, there was only us.
Monday 21 July, 2014
Well, Saturday turned out to be a wee bit damp for the show, but at least there was no danger of the livestock overheating :-)
We packed the car with most stuff the night before and we were up early but somehow, we were still rushing to get away at just before 8am. How does that happen?
Thankfully, Annie and Rosie loaded like a dream - even though Rosie hadn't been on the trailer before.
The "Other Native Breed" section had a small entry - actually, just us. It's a real shame. The organisers work so hard - since we started the Festival, I have so much sympathy for, and empathy with, them.
Tuesday 22 July, 2014
Our bull, Storm, had a run in with some wire a few weeks ago. All was well - healing cleanly and he wasn't lame but the scab's come off and the flies were on it so we took the trailer up today to contain him so we could get some antibiotic spray on it.
I planned to put him out with the cows 12th August, aiming for the same calving dates as this year (23-25th May) but I decided if we were getting him in the trailer anyway, we'd bring him home a bit earlier.
The calves are just over eight weeks old and, if he serves all four cows today, our calving will be 1st May, which is fine.It means Bonnie's a wee bit younger than I would have liked but she's quite well grown.