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Posted: Monday 10 February, 2020

by Rosemary at 2:01pm in Smallholding Comments closed

Monday 27th January

Glorious sunny day, but cold. Blizzard still lame so got the vet out again; the antibiotic given last week is long-acting, so she’s had a second dose of Metacam to keep her comfy while the AB works. Typically, she actually looked a bit better by the time the vet arrived.

Ewe No14 is also lame, so we washed her foot, stood her in Milton and sprayed with Alamycin spray.

Finally, there’s some positive progress with the septic tank. The field looks like a set from “1917” but it will heal.

TankBig boys' toys.

tankTank nearly in.

Spent a few hours arranging workshops here and drafting content for the website and a newsletter.

It was a novelty tonight to have all hens contained in the pens they should be in. Congratulations, Dan. Good job!

Tuesday 28th January

Colder, much colder, but some sun and no snow. As I was dressing this morning, the leg fell off my glasses. This is bad news as I’m blind as a bat but have no sonar. After a quick repair with tape, I took the lawnmower, hedge trimmer and brush cutter for their annual service – hopefully in plenty time this year, rather than when the grass is eight inches tall (if only), then some shopping, dropped some stuff at the Cat Protection charity shop and then off to the optician. Nice lady there popped out the lenses (I did not know you could do that) and put them in other frames – mine can be repaired. Love shopping local! Sadly, broken glasses meant no riding today.

Working on needle felting, yoga and knitting workshops. All good.

Picked up a load of hay; came back to find that the septic tank is in and connected up!!!! Yay!!! Landscaping still to be done and some bits and pieces to be completed but what a relief.

tankTank in! Yay!.

Wednesday 29th January

Dreich, but clearing up. Ewe No14 is still a wee bit lame, although much improved since Monday, so gave her foot another clean and spray.

Decided to bring Ace down from the field shelter, where he’s been in splendid isolation, to his herd in the barn. I put his rope on so that I could easily catch and tether him in the barn; he stood on it half way down the field and was instantly paralysed. Dan shouted on him, he moved his feet a bit and, thus freed, he hopped, skipped and jumped his way down to the barn and his feed bucket. Tied up, fed then released to reacquaint himself with his girls. All happy. Tomorrow, I’ll have to muck out the field shelter. What fun.

tankTidying up underway.

tankStill tidying.

tankMud, not-so-glorious mud.

Thursday 30th January

Mild and damp early, blustery rain later. Not bad for January - I hope we don’t pay for this later though. The tractor oil arrived so after our break, getting the tractor serviced and ready for the new season will be a priority. It would be good to get the rushes topped hard before the grass comes and the ground nesting birds start nesting.

No14 now completely sound; Blizzard not, but improving. I think. Managed to get out for a wee hack with Tara.

Friday 31st January

Feeling a bit overwhelmed; the prospect of a week away and trying to get ready to go, the septic tank plus Brexit and Scottish Indy just got too much, leading to tears and snotters. Maybe Dan’s tactic of leaving social media and never looking at news websites is a sound one. Thankfully, Dan is a great leveller and I sorted myself out. Went for two loads of hay; two bales for here and a bale of hay and one of straw for East Pitkerro, which Dan put in in the dark. Zephyr is the boss now.

Scott, Septic Tank Man No2, was here to pick up his big machine; Dave’s guys came yesterday for their equipment. Scott brought his mini digger and tidied up around the tank and scraped the track and Triangle for us, so it looks a bit tidier. I think Dan will want to get the fencing sorted round there pretty quick.

tankThis fence will be replaced.

tankA chance to remodel the area!

tankThank goodness for sand!.

tankGetting better!

I know that we'll look at these photos in late summer and be amazed at the difference.

Dan and I had a chat about future holidays and we agreed that, since we don’t fly any more, that three / four night breaks would be better for us. It’s easier to get cover and arrange putting in big bales and the like.

Saturday 1st February

Today is the Festival of Imbolc, Brigid’s Day, the first day of Spring. We decided we’d have the eight pagan Festivals as days off and this is the first. Dan was meeting Andrew Whitley from Scotland the Bread (he does their website) at Bowhouse, so I tagged along, drank tea, ate flapjack and read my book while they did what they had to do, then we came back to Dundee and went for lunch.

Linda came over for keys for when we're away. You know that snowball effect? Looked for house keys - found lots of keys. Some we didn't know what they were for - so a project was born. Key cabinet ordered and key tags - something for the rainy days. We also only have one tractor key, so that needs to be rectified.

keysKeys. For what though?

Housework and rugby (Oh, Scotland :-( )

We changed to cats' wet food to Morrisons (from Tesco) and they love it. It's very unusual to see all four together like this.

catsCats (l to r Thomas, Penfold, Diesel and Bertie).

Sunday 2nd February

Frosty start, turning to cloudy, damp and cold. A few heavy showers too. Not nice.

Fluked the female sheep, split the in lamb ewes off and put them in with the tup lambs, who can do no harm. They’ll start getting a wee bit hard feed now.

ewesOur six in lamb Ryelands, all carrying twins.

Dan spread some gravel on the paths, pruned the gooseberries and tidied up the fruit garden. I think we’ll put raspberries in the empty section later in the year. I sowed some seeds – peas and beans, sweet peas and Achillea, then some salad, carrots and beetroot in the polytunnel. It might come to nothing, but then it might not.

Andy chopped and split wood.

woodGetting ready for winter 2021

Did my usual Monday paperwork while Dan went shopping.

Monday 3rd to Sunday 9th February

Had a really nice relaxing week at Centreparcs. Dan came down on Thursday with the dogs and my nephew, his wife and younger son came up for a couple of nights. It was good to catch up – we don’t see much of each other for the rest of the year, sadly.

dogsPuppers on holiday. And Dan.

Came back Sunday, through Storm Ciara. It wasn’t as bad as we feared – strong winds and some heavy showers but the roads were fine. A lot of water elsewhere though. There was heavy rain at Dalmore on Saturday so standing water in Home, Laing’s Field and on the track.

All stock is fine. Back to normal tomorrow.

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