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Author Topic: Where is everyone?  (Read 14381 times)

pigsatlesrues

  • Joined Oct 2008
  • Normandy, France
Where is everyone?
« on: November 15, 2007, 07:09:10 pm »
Having been flat out here in Normandy over the last few weeks, with litters of piglets being born, castrating piglets, repairing fencing and generally tidying up the farm, I finally had some time to myself today, with everyone out of my hair.

So with the fire blazing and a hot cuppa in hand, I have been browsing the forum and writing some recipies which I thought might be nice for Christmas.

I notice that no one is around at the moment and haven't been for a few days, so just wondered what you are all doing?

I am being quite nosy I know, but since the members on the forum are so widely spread through several different countries, I think it would be quite interesting to know how you all fill your days.

The constant in my day, no matter what I am doing is the usual pig nose all up my legs. They are a nosy lot here and worse, they do insist on helping me with my washing - pig nose always pig nose, the little dears!!

SO DO TELL - WHAT HAVE YOU BEEN DOING!!  ::)
Bonjour et avoir un bon jour !

Pebbles

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Central Scotland
    • Ardunan Farm
    • Facebook
Re: Where is everyone?
« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2007, 11:38:25 pm »
Your days sound like absolute bliss  :)

How do we spend our days? Well, MB is a Company Director (mostly signing cheques and playing solitaire :D) and I am a business manager with L'Oreal. With Christmas approaching and the company preparing to do 50% of it's business during these few short weeks I am kept very, very busy working longer than normal hours. I am at work from 9am - 8ish these days with an hour and a quarter commute each way.

Our second passion (second to our farm venture) is flying. We both have private pilots licenses and have a couple of small aircraft based at Perth. The Scottish weather means we only fly in summer (July!)  :(

Today, I headed off to MB's office after finishing a long days work and we started to build our 'monster' pig ark! The piggies are arriving in a day or two so it's all go! Must buy troughs, food, straw +++

In between all of this I tend to use my minutes of spare time I have, emptying the dishwasher, filling the washing machine, solving problems for family and friends, trying and failing to keep my 'blog' up to date and taking care of Emma our baby/ border collie who is totally wasted and useless with our sheep! We eat out a LOT as I can't cook and although MB is a fantastic cook, it's often too late to start when we get home.

Sigh! Like I said, your day sounds like bliss  :)

Hopefully we will be 'living our dream' very soon.

Bet you wish you hadn't asked!  ;)

Pebbles
Trying to be self-sufficient and raise happy, healthy animals on our smallholding at www.ardunanfarm.com

Championing local food producers around the UK at The Great British Food Hub www.thegreatbritishfoodhub.com get in touch if you want to be the person who creates a Food Hub in your community

carl

  • Joined Oct 2007
Re: Where is everyone?
« Reply #2 on: November 16, 2007, 09:14:50 am »
my other life is that of  company director also. which keeps me busy during working hours( except when i stop to have a drink and peruse AS and its forum). also as my wife has a very busy schedule as a high flying proffessional, i have the duty of caring for our young lad alex. he needs running round to school etc. though is learning to be helpful with all the chores at home. over the last week i have added 2 new gos weaners to the herd, and have had fencing duties. also tidying up the veg plot. i have also given 6 young pol hens to a friend starting out in a bit of downsizing. we are also having a new multifuel stove fitted in the next few days. busy , busy ,busy. but would not have it any other way. used to play a bit of golf, but no time now so i try and get a bit of tennis in down in the village as it only takes an hour or so. loads of projects on the boil. re housing, waterproofing, hedging, setting up water troughs, planting, digging over plots. plus making the house perfect for the arrival of 7 in laws for xmas. ( geese & turkeys to process!).
ah the good life.
i look forward to proccessing our first lot of porkers early next year so i am pleased to see lots of interest in other posters.
best wishes to you all.
carl :)

stephen

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Kent
Re: Where is everyone?
« Reply #3 on: November 16, 2007, 09:55:11 am »
I spend monday to friday working for a distance learning school within the finance sector. 7-7 most days as the commute isnt very plesent! my other half works in health care and is studying to become a qualified nurse so his days are normally 7-7 as well if not later! we only have some old english game at the moment and looking after them is quite easy! food and water check every day when i get home and top it up or replace it as necessary along with the guinnea pigs that share their run! we also breed cats and that is in itself a full time job! we have a pair of scottish wildcats in a specially designed and built enclosure in the back garden, they havent been with us that long and were quite under weight when we got them so we have been feeding them up and keeping a close eye on the weight gains they are making (easier said than done!) they are very important as there are only around 400 pure bred pairs left and are predicted to become extinct in the next decade! so we are involved in a breeding conservation programme! we have only 2 kittens at the moment (thank god!) one choc point siamese and one choc tortie oriental, we have a litter due from one of our bengal girls middle of december (she is the size of a house already!) and get our f5 bengal stud boy and our f1 bengal rescue cats home in a weeks time!! (am very excited!!) we have a tortie oriental due to pop next month as well and she normally has a minimum of 8! as well as her daughter who may be having her first litter early jan but were not so sure! so most of my past weekends have been spent redesigning one of our rooms into a kitten friendly / pregnant cat room! building cupbords, kitten pens, birthing pens and boxes, making sure we have a full stock of food / milk supplement / nutrient supplement etc and i also decided to redecorate our hall and lounge!! i either seem to be at work or at home.... normally playing with the kittens or stood with a saw / drill in one hand and a confused expression on my face! (diy is not my fortay but im learning!) i also maintain and built our website i have loads of other pages to add that are partially built but not finnished! do all the washing, cleaning, litter trays, food / water hoppers, ironing etc etc the list is endless with thigs still to do but we will get there in the end and hopefully one day (if all goes to plan) resign from our jobs and go live the 'good life' in the country!  ;D

pigsatlesrues

  • Joined Oct 2008
  • Normandy, France
Re: Where is everyone?
« Reply #4 on: November 16, 2007, 10:46:54 am »
Oh my god I feel guilty now!!

We are on call 24/7 and do work 7 days a week, but with no stress, at least not the same stress that we used to have.

We gave up the suit and briefcase clan to come to Normandy and our farming life has really evolved over the past 3 years. We started with 3 male goats rehomed from Chichester to bring with us and we bought in 6 chooks. We have become a bit of a goat sanctuary actually and have a lot of unwanted males who are totally useless really but I adour them. We have a few females so have the pleasure of kids each year which we sell on as pets.

Our life moved forward with our farm bizarrly with the birth of our first male chicks. We soon found that you cannot keep too many cockerals, it becomes a bit of a blood bath, so decided to take the plunge and eat them, and with the help of our French nieghbours who showed us what to do, well did it for us in the first instance, we sat and ate our first home grown meat. The first mouthful was really hard, but then a feeling of satisfaction crept in knowing that our chook had been happy and free range, and that became the ethos of our life. We waste nothing and even the carcuss was used for stock/soup. From there we got ducks, then geese, then got brave and bought our first two pigs who were pregnant. 

We now have some 80 plus pigs, which are rare breed pigs so grow slowely, and have now reached the numbers that enable us to process and sell our product in it's varous forms. We cross breed the various types in order to vary the meat, and have regular customers who come back for cross weaners, or pure bred weaners, so we have to facilitate that demand.

We are buying in the Rare Mangalitza's so will be breeding the Reds, Blonds and Swallowbellies by the end of 2008 which is exciting for us since their numbers are low, and apart from our friends in Britanny who have the original Swallowbellys, we don't think there are any more in France so we will be doing our part in the conservation of the breed.

We are just about to move to a larger property so we are moving into sheep in a small way. I have Ouessant ram, Norman, and am desparately searching for his Dee (Norman - Dee!! - sorry about that!!). I know I can get some females next May but would like to get Norm a mate earlier if possible.

I have been researching the Ryeland breed, having read Rosemarys thread re the breed, and since I don't believe there are any in France, we are very keen on the idea of importing some, so watch this space and fingers crossed we can achieve that.

Our days are really busy, but in a nice way. Nothing nicer than sitting with your pig giving it a belly rub or tickling its ear. The mud is awful when it rains, but when you look into those beautiful little faces as you dish our their dinner, the mud becomes insignificant.

If there is anything we have learned it is that any life is precious. Every chick that is born is a mirical, every piglet born is a joy, and we respect every animal here on the basis of the joy that it gives us and the food it provides us. As we sit down to our dinner, we know that that piece of meat was a living breathing animal that we brought into this world, and we appreciate it and try to waste nothing. It is not anonomous and packaged, it is a friend.

Good luck to any of you wanting this life, I really hope you achieve it. One tip though - make sure you invest in really good quality wellies otherwise it is murder on your feet!

Kate


Bonjour et avoir un bon jour !

carl

  • Joined Oct 2007
Re: Where is everyone?
« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2007, 11:00:23 am »
you can't beat tickling a pig into comatose submission. if i tickle the little boar porker it rolls belly up, and it's sisters pile on for some scratchy tickle action. happy as pigs in muck. ;)

jan

  • Joined Oct 2007
Re: Where is everyone?
« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2007, 04:29:52 pm »
WELL..... my oh my, after reading all through your posts I seem to have a very easy life.  I work from home running my own dog Behaviour/Training business whilst doing on going study in Canine Aggression, have finished courses on Canine Psychology and am doing a degree in Canine Management and Behaviour next year, do ongoing agility training with my three JRT's, have one old black cat that adopted us years ago, and my pride and joy are my six girls 1ex batt, 3 legbars, and 2 Calder Rangers.  I work full time for Doglost Uk, have a 5year old grandson who lives with us, hubby always away in the forces, and we are looking forward in about 7 years time of moving back up to Scotland and having a (very small) smallholding!! ;D  I do not drive so I go everywhere on my bike (live in a small market town) with Cameron in the back in the buggy...and a wicker basket on the front... ;D

So I'm afraid thats what has been keeping me busy, oh nearly forgot, the washing, ironing, cleaning, blah blah blah...... ;D

Hilarysmum

  • Joined Oct 2007
Re: Where is everyone?
« Reply #7 on: November 17, 2007, 09:29:36 am »
I just keep pigs, and try very hard although not very successfully to learn French.

Dan

  • The Accidental Smallholder
  • Administrator
  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Carnoustie, Angus
    • The Accidental Smallholder
    • Facebook
Re: Where is everyone?
« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2007, 07:39:49 pm »
Well, apart from neglecting the AS diary I spend my days building up my web business. I left my job in March this year to concentrate full-time on it and it's gone really well so far. More travelling involved than I'd like to sustain long-term (been going to London a lot, sometimes for the day, sometimes for the week, and off to South Africa for the day next week) as it leaves Rosemary with everything to look after here and a full-time job to do and a daughter to care for.

Most of my day is spent in front of the computer although I do take a break most afternoons to take the dogs for a walk (dog, singular at the moment since Tess is lame). Tomorrow my new regime starts, to make time for a trip to the gym at least twice a week to get me away from the screen and keep me fit.  :)

Any spare time is spent crossing things off the to-do list Rosemary maintains for me, but don't tell her I said that.  :-X

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: Where is everyone?
« Reply #9 on: November 18, 2007, 08:11:42 pm »
Apart from writing Dan's to do list and very occasionally crossing something off it, I pick poo. I'm really missing the daylight this year. I've tried picking poo in the dark, but it's very difficult. Someone suggested feeding the horses something luminous! Am I becoming obsessive?

Although I work full-time in local government, the office is exactly one mile from our door, so commuting isn't an issue. My boss also lets me work fairly flexibly, so I've been starting later, say 9.30 or 10, and working later at night - since it's dark, I might as well be in the office! Although my job has its stresses, at least I don't have to work all the hours God sends or drive miles to do it.

Dan has suggested that I learn to spin, since we'll have fleeces next year, so I've added that to MY "to do" list, along with cheese and butter making! I also need to get organised for the first meeting of what I hope will become the Forth Valley and West Fife Smallholders Association.

I never make enough time for my horse - he's my sort of guilty pleasure so I keep him till last, and sometimes run out of time. The state of my relationship with Smokey impacts on everything. This may sound bizarre to anyone except a horse lover, who will understand exactly. When Smokey and I are in tune, all is well with the world. When we're not, oh boy! Dan has learned to live with it, if not fully understand it.

I don't do any "organised" exercise - the gym bores me rigid and although I enjoy swimming, I'm kind of funny about swimming pools. A former colleague of mine once said that "it wouldn't be so bad if you knew the hair on the floor was head hair." Enough said! So walking round the field and playing with Smokey has to do me for exercise.

But now I'm going to walk round the supermarket, so that Dan has time to go to the gym tomorrow.

Oh, I also do "martyrdom".

jan

  • Joined Oct 2007
Re: Where is everyone?
« Reply #10 on: November 19, 2007, 07:15:16 pm »
Probably not putting this in the right place, but Dan do you have a website i could visit as I shall be trying to smarten the tiny one i have in the New Year.  I shall be needing extra pages etc, and have no idea where to start.  Many thanks Jan.

p.s. Rosemary so glad to hear that someone (apart from myself) does 'martyrdom'!!! ;D hahaha

Ari-elf

  • Joined Dec 2007
Re: Where is everyone?
« Reply #11 on: December 10, 2007, 11:26:15 pm »
Been totally flat out at work, even though it's the slow season. Also settling in to enjoy our first Christmas in Scotland...And honestly, it's too cold to venture out from underneath the blankets ;)

Fluffywelshsheep

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Near Stirling, Central Scotland
Re: Where is everyone?
« Reply #12 on: December 11, 2007, 10:31:50 am »
Probably not putting this in the right place, but Dan do you have a website i could visit as I shall be trying to smarten the tiny one i have in the New Year.  I shall be needing extra pages etc, and have no idea where to start.  Many thanks Jan.

p.s. Rosemary so glad to hear that someone (apart from myself) does 'martyrdom'!!! ;D hahaha

what do you want to do ?
linz

jan

  • Joined Oct 2007
Re: Where is everyone?
« Reply #13 on: December 17, 2007, 02:43:26 pm »
Hi Linz, basically need more pages and some ideas on format, how to lay things out the best way, need to put in training advice, food advice etc, so need someone with some know how of where to go how to go and what to do.  The website I have at the moment is just one page (small), I also need to put up some pics and some testimonials from clients. I dont need a huge thing as I am a one man band and dont do training classes, but more 1-2-1 behaviourals in the clients homes with their dogs.  Thanks for asking Janx ;D

Fluffywelshsheep

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Near Stirling, Central Scotland
Re: Where is everyone?
« Reply #14 on: December 17, 2007, 08:54:08 pm »
how did you do the 1st lot html? or just used a prog which created the pages.
I uses a wizwig progman called dreamweaver which means you can either uses it in the design setting or in the code setting you also have the ability to uses it in the split so i can see the design and the code :). The program is an expensive one but you can get free wizwig prog.
Linz

 

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