Meet Gwenna / Wood store / Apiary / Bertie's tailRSS feed

Posted: Wednesday 30 August, 2017

by Rosemary at 9:49am in Smallholding 6 comments Add your own

Monday 21st August

Dry today. Paul collected the timber for the wood store and is cracking on with that.

Wood store siteWood store site ready for construction.

Limpy Pig is less limpy but not yet sound.

Popped to Forfar to pick up some feed – I’m having a few days “off” after we pick up the puppy on Friday, so need to be sure that there are sufficient stores in.

Good milking, the cattle love playing on their way out, they are definitely settled in their routine now.

Cattle playing after milkingCattle playing after milking.

The area where they play is really wet and muddy so we're hoping to get it dug out in the next month and covered with type 1 before the winter.

Getting excited about Gwenna.

Tuesday 22nd August

Dry but overcast in the morning but the haar rolled in this afternoon. I was awake at 1.30am so made a cheesecake base; didn’t think Dan would appreciate the mixer going at 2.30am so waited until 8am to make the filling. I’m planning to do a pop-up tearoom sometime soon.

Found some nice recipes in Delia’s Cookery Course book, as I was drinking tea and browsing pre-dawn. I’ve had it for years and use it regularly for basic recipes like Yorkshire pudding, mayonnaise and all-in-one sponge but rarely for “proper” recipes.

Found a nice one for an apple cream tart that I think might work for individual tarts too.

Wednesday 23rd August

Another night of broken sleep – Festival anxiety dreams mainly.

Vaccinated the three calves with Bravoxin and took tail hair samples from the two heifer calves for A2 gene testing. Applied Spot-On to all twelve cattle. This should be the last time this year, hopefully.

Ace had pulled out an ear tag “fighting” with Bug’s haynet, so I replaced that (while he was eating sugar beet).

Woodstore construction continues apace, Paul does a fantastic job with wood.

Wood store in progressWood store in progress.

And to wrap up the day, I cleaned out two henhouses.

Thursday 24th August

Braw day. I cleaned the third henhouse and there was some evidence of red mite, so I gave it a good douse in diatomaceous earth.

I’ll check it again when we get back from Wales – off to pick up our new puppy today, so very excited!

Friday 25th August

It’s all about Gwenna. She’s our new Cardigan Welsh Corgi; she’s eight weeks old, sable and white and a full sister to our fabulous Bryn.

I wish we had discovered this terrific breed twenty years ago.

Gwenna and CardiLast chance for a play with mum, Cardi.

We picked her up this morning and drove seven hours back from Wales and she was a wee star.

Rosemary and GwennaRosemary and Gwenna.

She slept most of the way, except for two periods of looking out the window and two stops for comfort breaks.

Pointing the way home from TebayPointing the way home from Tebay.

We forgot it was a Bank Holiday weekend until we got to the first service station – which was heaving. Fortunately for us, most folk seemed to turn off the M6 for the Lake District.

Saturday 26th August

I have no idea what these cats have killed in the boot room. The chair is covered in blood.

Bryn’s decided he likes his wee sister and she certainly likes him. He’s not quite ready to let her share a bed with him yet though.

She’s been great – seems to have settled in fine; eating well, clean, playing and sleeping.

Gwenna spots a catGwenna and Bryn cat-spotting.

We’re feeling very popular, as loads of folk have come to visit – but we know the truth!

Dan baked bread, definitely getting better, and started making a sourdough starter.

BreadBread's improving!

Cropped Victoria plums from the veg garden, and some Discovery from the apple orchard. Also had some Arthur Turner and Grenadier windfalls to cook.

Sunday 27th August

It’s been a lovely day today. Great time of year to get a puppy – why anyone wants to get one at Christmas is beyond me.

Bryn, Gwenna and I were out for our first turn around the garden at 5.30am – me in jammies and Crocs (not a good look really).

Gwenna, Cardigan Welsh CorgiGwenna, Cardigan Welsh Corgi.

Nae chance of that in December. Gwenna can get out the cat flap.

Pooped puppyPooped puppy.

Work on the wood store is proceding apace.

Wood store two-thirdsWood store in progress - it will have three bays eventually.

It will soon be ready to have this season’s wood cut and stacked in it.

The apiary is also progressing thanks to a pile of work from Gemma and Paul.

The plan is to plant a native hedge around the perimeter in the autumn, to include hazel, blackthorn, dog rose, hawthorn, native privet, wayfaring tree, scots elm, hornbeam, spindle, plus some honeysuckle. Ground cover will initially be a woodland wild flower mix.

The hives will be located close enough to the hedge force the bees up on a trajectory that will keep them away from stock and pedestrians. In the meantime Gemma is building a dead hedge to do the same job while the live hedge is growing.

We had gammon from last year’s OSB pigs for dinner. It was delicious. Dan also made leek puddings. I think these may become a regular feature on winter menus.

I made the apple cream tart recipe that I found in Delia’s book during the week. It was rather nice so I’m going to try it as individual tarts.

And a week doesn’t go by without a visit to or by the vet. We found the source of the blood on the chair (see Saturday). At this time of year, we don’t see much of Bertie Cat. He’s out doing cat things and comes home to eat if the hunting is poor.

He came in tonight about 9.30pm, had some dry food but looked a bit miserable. His right ear was down, so we had a look and there was a cut; as we applied some Savlon, we noticed a huge wound running almost the length of his tail. It was obviously very painful.

Call to the emergency vet and Dan took him into Dundee. He’s been kept in to have antibiotics and painkillers and to have the wound cleaned and examined. Poor boy.

Monday 28th update on Bertie

Bertie has had his tail amputated this morning. He was anaesthetized to have the wound cleaned; because it was old, once the dead skin and flesh was removed, there was nothing left to stitch.

The alternative was to subject him to several days of repeated bandaging to try to grow enough new tissue that could be stitched, but the vet wasn’t hopeful that it would work. So we decided that an amputation was the lesser of two evils.

Dan looked on a few forums for amputee cats and the general view was that they recovered quickly and adapted to having no tail very well.

Poor Bertie – he had a beautiful tail too.



Wednesday 30 August, 2017 at 1:00pm

Gwenna is gorgeous


Wednesday 30 August, 2017 at 1:02pm

Interested that you describe her as sable and white. I think of sable as dark brown to black. Will she darken as she ages, or do they name the colours differently in Cardis?


Wednesday 30 August, 2017 at 4:08pm

Hi Sally. Sable is what's on her KC papers. I know the breeder (its only her second litter) took advice from the breed association on the different colours when she was registering them. I thought Bryn was red and white but I think he's registered as sable too.


Wednesday 30 August, 2017 at 7:28pm

Gwenna is adorable.

Sorry to hear about Bertie's tail. Had a cat who lived for 11 years minus one tail and one hind leg. She was absolutely fine, but it's odd to see the stump move (not sure if they leave anything nowadays. Insights about that have progressed since 30 uears ago). Anyway, just wanted to give you a heads up on that.


Sunday 3 September, 2017 at 11:13am

Does Paul have plans for the woodstore that he would pass on......?

It's looking really good Rosemary



Sunday 3 September, 2017 at 3:04pm

Hi Colin. I think they are in his head :-) I will ask though.

Leave a comment

Please use the form below to leave a comment. All fields are required unless otherwise indicated, and your email address will not be displayed or shared.

Some HTML allowed: <strong>, <em>, <blockquote>. URLs will be converted to links automatically.

© The Accidental Smallholder Ltd 2003-2022. All rights reserved.

Design by Furness Internet

Site developed by Champion IS