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Posted: Tuesday 18 August, 2020

by Rosemary at 11:12am in Smallholding No comments Add your own

Monday 10th August

Cloudy and warm. Determined to get through all the office jobs this morning. I’ve been invited by a local breeder of Irish Moiled cattle to see their breed society’s system of cattle assessment and classification. Very pleased.

That was good – three hours with an assessor looking at Beef Shorthorn and Irish Moiled cattle. I now have a better understanding of how the system works.

Just as I was getting ready to retire for the night, Dan having gone to shut the hens in, he phoned to say one of the calves was behind the electric fence. It was Afton. “Great,” I thought, “this’ll be a pantomime”. But no, as soon as the wires were lowered, she trotted across then flew back to Albie – then had a great play with him. She’s a real bonny calf.

We have some lovely harebells in the fields just now. Love ‘em.

harebellsHarebells in Laing's Field.

Tuesday 11th August

Sunny spells and warm. Dead hen in the brown house this morning – nothing obvious, just age.

Mandy-next-door was pulling some spent brassicas – nice treat for the sheep.

sheepSheep enjoying brassicas.

Nik, the cattle foot trimmer came early afternoon to trim Ace, Rosie and Annie. Rosie and Annie needed pushed, shoved, coaxed into the crush; Ace just wandered in. He’s such a good boy.

The joiner was here tonight to have a look at the byre and we think we have a stone mason interested in the uprights in the byre, which would be good.

Wednesday 12th August

Jim the Roofer came in today – or Jim the Mystery Man, as I’m calling him now because I didn’t recognise him – he’ll give us a price for removing the four skylights on the West Range and reslating, and giving the roof a once-over. And Graham the Joiner was here to measure up the byre. All go here.

I’m trying to pick more flowers for the house. They’re so lovely and give such a lovely splash of colour.

flowersDahlias and cornflowers.

Thursday 13th August

Today was the big photo shoot! The two Shetland cattle breed associations are holding an on-line show, so the girls and Ace got a bit of a wash and brush up then Dan took their photos. OMG, they’re fat. I need to find a way of getting some weight off them, safely, over the winter.

Rebecca, Tara and I hacked out this evening along the railway – lovely. Cooler and no flies. Sadly, a cyclist nearly ran up Smokey’s bum, which spooked him. That upset the other two horses. Cyclist didn’t even apologies. Then another group of cyclists nearly ran into Ave, who was at the front – they were coming fast round a twisty but of track and obviously didn’t expect to meet anyone – certainly not horses. They were very apologetic – as were we.

Friday 14th August

Since we were supposed to be on holiday this week, Dan and I had a day off today. He knitted, I did Shetland cattle stuff.

First Grenadier apples ready!

applesFirst Grenadier.

Saturday 15th August

Decent day. Started by cleaning out two hen houses then brought the cattle in and gave the two calves their second dose of Bravoxin 10. Then it was into the vegetable garden, weeding and planting out some cabbages that I forgot I had ordered. The variety is Rigoletto.

One of our egg customers, who has a restaurant, was at the wholesalers and saw these egg boxes going a begging, so he brought them for us. Thought that was awful nice of him.

boxesFree egg boxes.

Dan strimmed forever. Mark and Mo, Dan’s brother and his wife, called in for a socially distanced visit – just as well the weather’s been good over this pandemic period. So far, at least.

Rebecca and I went for a wee hack – not the best. Smokey needed a pee and, despite me giving him ample opportunity to go, he didn’t. I could tell he was uncomfortable and it’s not like him. Of course, we went as soon as we got back to the farm.

Sunday 16th August

Started the day by cleaning out the hens’ caravan then had the rest of the day off  – at a birthday party for an old riding chum. Good to catch up. Where do the years go? She, another chum and I rode together at a riding stables then had a holiday in Wyoming TWENTY YEARS AGO. Still one of the best experiences of my life.

Dan put the desks up in the office. We've been working on a table but it's not the right space and we've both got sore wrists and elbows. He sadi he'd forgotten how heavy they were.

desksDesks assembled but not quite in place yet.

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