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Festival / Blizzard / SheepRSS feed

Posted: Monday 28 October, 2019

by Rosemary at 12:40pm in Smallholding No comments Add your own

Monday 21st October

Frosty start followed by sunshine. I slept poorly – too many things in my head.

What a fright this morning. Went out to feed the cattle – Annie and Rosie at the fence as usual, Ace in the field, calves bawling and no sign of Blizzard. Walked over to Laing’s Field and she’s flat out up by the fence, so I’m running and phoning Dan to say she’s down. I thought she was dead. As I got closer, I could see her moving her legs – she was cast.

There’s a ridge at the edge of the field – she must have been lying on the end and rolled on to her side and been unable, due to the ridge to get back up. I don’t know how long she’d been down, but there was quite a pile of shit at her back end. Can I just point out that I wasn't wasting time here taking a photo of her stuck - I was waiting fro Dan to bring his muscles. If it helps, she got me a great kick right on my left kneecap.

castPoor Blizzard.

Anyway, we managed to roll her right over on to her chest and after a few minutes, she got up. She was a bit trembly but she had a big burp and  walked off to join Ace. Phoned the vet who said to keep an eye on her; he suggested Metacam, but I decided to wait and see how she was later.

chestOn her chest.

steamingAnd on her feet.

At 6pm, she had a wee feed of sugar beet and seemed much better – I’d watched her grazing during the day. Hopefully, she won’t be too sore. Poor girl. And she’d supposed to be going to the Festival on Saturday. Bitworried that she might slip her calf, if she's pregnant.

teatimeFeeling better.

The farrier came to do Smokey’s feet, which are fine. Butcher phoned to say they’d “found” some crates of our beef – mince, stew and brisket. Dan thought we were short, right enough. He’s going to freeze it down for us.

Got the ewes in and gave them their autumn makeovers – faces, feet, fluke and bums. The ewe lambs also got a dose of wormer. Urquhart also got his feet done and his fluke dose. The other boys will have to wait until next week. Doing the ewes, turned round and Urquhart is on his back. Jeez. There’s an area thick with tree roots next to the gate – that’s where he lies so he can see the ewes. Obviously dangerous, so he’d now in the paddock right next to them. The flirting has started.

flirtingShameless hussy.

Sadly, when we were checking the ewes, No2 has had mastitis and her udder is done, so she won’t be breeding this year. She didn’t show any signs of being unwell. Shame, because she’s Niamh’s daughter – and looks so like Niamh.

Wormed the ponies and took Smokey for a 10 plus 10 walk in hand.

Tuesday 22nd October

Dan pressed another apple variety – Lord Lambourne. I don’t think we’ve ever pressed this one before.

Mary, one of the other Smallhlding Scotland trustees, and I did a wee interview for BBC Radio Scotland’s “Out of Doors” programme. Sadly, it won’t be broadcast before the Festival.

Diesel should have gone to the vet but, again, he absconded. Have made a third appointment for morning next week.

Had a couple of local business representatives here today as part of a Business Angus initiative.

Wednesday 23rd October

Lovely day but confined to the office doing Festival stuff, but had time to take a photo of this year's calves

calvesl to r Zephyr, Zenith and Archie.

Thursday 24th October

Another glorious day – spent most of it in the kitchen baking for our stall on Saturday.

Friday 25th October

Cool and windy. Festival set up today so finished baking at lunchtime, loaded car and trailer with stuff for our stand, the Smallholding Scotland stand, Blizzard’s pen and a pile of other Festival boxes. Got back about 8pm with fish suppers, then iced the cakes for morning.

I had intended to bring Blizz and the calf in overnight but just ran out of time.

Tired and tense.

Saturday 26th October

Up at 6am; inveigled Blizz and Zenith into the barn while distracting the others with food. They loaded fine but how can one cow and one calf produce so much shit in two half hour journeys?

We had a great day at the Festival – the Dalmore Croft stall sold out of cakes; we sold a lot of bottled juice and hot mulled juice, comb honey – and lots of interest in what we’re doing here.

From an organisers point of view, there were no disasters, which is always a good starting point. We had a great turnout and lots of happy folk. There were some things that we’ll want to change for next year so we need to get our review meeting in the diary.

We came home about 6pm with Blizz and the calf; unloaded them, unloaded the car and unhitched it, then I went back to Forfar to pick up more stuff.

Tired but happy tonight.

Sunday 27th October

Glorious day again but quite windy. After the morning routine, first job was to clean out the trailer from yesterday, then off to pick up a bale of hay and a bale of straw for East PItkerro. That’s the shed ready for the steers, apart from a water trough. If the weather continues like this, I’ll leave them out a bit longer but at least we’re ready just to open the gate and run them in if the weather breaks. I need to think about weaning Archie and picking up the bought in steer.

Then it was back for two bales of hay for here – still on the trailer as I want to rearrange the hay storage area for the winter.

Toyed with the idea of putting the ewes in with the tup but I want to check dates and access to lambs for bottle feeding first. They’ll go in Friday at the latest. The cattle will also com in then.

We met Jeni at the Festival – she acme here on a course, fell in love with Urquhart and has arranged for Teddy and him to retire to a sanctuary in South Lanarkshire. However, he has to lose his working tackle first. Good news and bad news, I guess.

So it was emptying boxes, throwing out rubbish and sorting stuff for next year – yep, preparation starts now. I did have the afternoon off and took our daughter swimming, which was fun.

Busy week ahead – early night and, hopefully, a good night’s sleep

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