Weeding; Baking; Knitting; CattleRSS feed

Posted: Monday 14 November, 2016

by Rosemary at 5:05pm in Smallholding Comments closed

Monday 7th November

Finally got started weeding the veg garden. Did the perennial bed – it’s the easiest because some of the area is taken up by strawberries and comfrey. Pulled out the pea supports and I’m determined to make a start on that bed tomorrow.

Checked the cattle at Astwood and they are all fine. Blizzard is bawling a wee bit. I let her out this morning but she was happy enough to come back into the barn this afternoon.

One Sasso still unable to find her way to bed – her days are numbered (at five, in fact) if she doesn’t get her act together.

Dan has removed the bacon from the smoker after 12 hours and has sliced it. Naturally, we’ve had a sample and it’s lovely.

Spoke to our butcher this morning and he said he’d tried our Shetland rump steak and that it was the best beef he’d tasted in many years. Always good to get the thumbs up from a man in the know.

Tuesday 8th November

Had to take the car to the garage this morning as it was making a funny noise. Sorted now but no obvious cause.

Pulled out the sweetcorn and weeded that bit of the bed.

Wednesday 9th November

Bit dreich today so no weeding.

Baked an AllBran loaf, some mincemeat cookies and some almond biscuits. First time for the almond biscuits but really nice, so will make them again. I think it’s quite an adaptable recipe.

Mincemeat cookies and almond biscuitsMincemeat cookies and almond biscuits.

Winnie Calf has worked out what a bucket is and that the stuff in it is really nice (a mix of soaked sugar beet and calf coarse mix).

Winnie and her bucketWorking on Winnie's addiction to sugar beet.

She’ll stand to let me give her a scratch now so will start with the halter in the next few days.

Arranged to pick up the bull on 11th December, after he’s been tested for IBR and Lepto. I’m sure he will be OK, but better safe than sorry.

Thursday 10th November

It’s been pretty grey here all day, but dry. Cleaned out all three hen houses.

Arranged to pick up the beef on Monday morning – Dan’s going to go and take the trailer. I’ve emailed all the folk that have bought boxes, asking them to pick up on Monday afternoon / evening. Really hoping we’ll be able to avoid buying another freezer.

Have emailed Gleneagles to see if there’s a possibility of them taking Shetland as a guest beef. Nae cheek, nae chance.

Started preparing for the Forfar Farmers’ Market on Saturday. John and Linda put the bands on all balls of yarn, ready for Saturday. We have a lovely pattern for mittens, designed by Julia Billings at Woollen Flower, so we’ve put together a gift pack of pattern and two balls of wool at a special price.

The Sheepfold Mittens pattern's on the Rosedean Ryelands website too, but the postage is wrong!

Dan showed me how to work our new card reader, so that I can take card payments.

Our friend Debra posted a photo on FB of her newly completed Rosedean Ryeland sweater. Looks fab.

Friday 11th November

Spent a good bit of the day, on and off, getting ready for the farmers’ market tomorrow in Forfar.

Did a wee bit on the conference – really hoping to get this done by the end of the month so I can get some Festival tasks done before Christmas.

Sasso No 7 has finally worked out how to use the ladder. Yay!

Not so “yay” are the mice in the feed store; I could smell them the other day and I could see droppings today. After putting down a litter tray, food and water, I shut our Mouser-in-Chief, Bertie, in for the night.

Saturday 12th November

Turns out it was Diesel I’d shut in the feed store. Sometimes it’s really hard to tell them apart.

Had a lovely morning at Forfar Farmers’ market. John and Linda came along, so that I could get a cuppa and then the necessary break. Lots of nice folk, sold a good bit of yarn and caught up with a few folk that I know from Festival and various other things.

Stand at Angus Farmers' MarketOur stand at Angus Farmers' Market.

Three really nice things happened, though.

Two ladies came back to show me what they had knitted with our yarn; one lady had knitted two lovely hats with the 2016 Light yarn and another lady had knitted mittens with the 2016 Dark, with a 2016 Light double cuff.

Rosedean Ryelands customer projectsRosedean Ryelands customer projects.

Now, while we were admiring the second lady’s mittens, a third lady came over to look at the yarn and asked if the mittens were warm. We all said they were – especially with the double cuff. Lady No3 explained that she suffered from Raynaud’s so really felt the cold, but that she couldn’t knit. I suggested that she might be able to get a friend to knit some for her and that was that.

About 15 minutes later, Mitten Lady and Lady No3 came back to buy yarn; Mitten Lady had gone after Lady No 3 and offered to knit mittens for her, so they came back, bought yarn, swapped addresses, hugged each other and headed off. Wasn’t that just so lovely?

Picked up a tonne of corn for the hens but put off unloading it until I get the feed store tidied up. Bertie, definitely Bertie, is in there for the night

Dan’s been fencing.

Sunday 13th November

So before I unloaded the tonne of mixed corn I picked up yesterday, I turned out the feed store, swept the floor and put everything back neatly. Unloaded the corn. Couldn’t find a cat at bedtime. Will probably put down bait this week, although I’d rather the cats took care of it. It was good to see the feed store tidy – we do keep it reasonably tidy all the time but with use, standards do inevitably slip.

After the feed store, it was on to the barn. Dan and our friend, Andy, were cutting and splitting wood. Andy tidied up “their” end and I did the other. I also made a sheep hurdle pen, so that I can bring Bug in.

With Blizz and Winnie in, the main part of the barn is unavailable – although Bug would probably co-habit quite happily.

We’ve sold some yarn to a shop in Edinbugh “Ginger Twist” in London Road www.gingertwiststudio.com - very pleased and thanks to Louise Scollay at www.knitbritish.net for suggesting us to Jess.  

Kind of wondering if I should just move to a fleece flock. Will be doing some sums. Although I think I would miss lambing.

Spent some time preparing for the beef. We might need a further freezer.

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