Monthly Archives: March 2009

Weekend seed sowing

The forecast wasn’t really the best for seed sowing as frosts were due, and there was one, so I didn’t really sow as much as I’d planned.

I did start of early carrots, red spring onions, to go with the white spring onions I sowed last weekend, rocket and kale for trying as salad leaves but if we don’t like them then we can just let the plants grow to full size and eat them that way.

No sign of potato shoots yet, they have had a whole week to come through.

I washed some black sheep wool and bottled a load of pickled quail eggs and some mustard that I’ve tried making with red wine vinegar to see how it turns out too.

Time to sow seeds

Moon planting isn’t going so well, I have been trying to stick to it and have got some things right. Last Sundays potato and spring onions seeds went in on the right day but basicly I’m just not organisated enough for it at the moment and trying to plant things on the right day is just meaning I’m not getting seeds sown.

Take last night as an example: I got home from work at about 6.30pm, Mon – Weds I work two jobs each day so by Weds I’m normally pretty tired. By the time I come in say hello to people and catch up on the days news with a cup of tea it is at least 7pm, then there are jobs to be done, feeding everyone, etc. then I have to get ready for work the next morning and MAKE myself be in bed by 10pm or I just can’t get up the next morning.

Last night I should have been sowing cauliflower and broccoli but I hadn’t managed to be organisated enought to have enought paper pots ready, or any compost, so it just didn’t happen. Tonight I should be leaf plants but I haven’t even had a look in my box to see what I could/should be planting so I doubts that that will happen either.

Given all this I think it’s going to be best if I just abandion moon planting for this year, and maybe just keep a note of what went in on what moon phase.  I have three days off this weekend and know I can get loads sown if I’m not restricting myself.

I went past the field that will have our allotments on on the way home and they have been ploughed and the plots started to be marked out, another reason I just want to get on with it now, there is so much I want to grow this year.

In season week #29


broccoli | cauliflower | jersey royal new potatoes | purple sprouting broccoli | radishes | rhubarb | rocket | sorrel | spinach | spring onions | watercress


bananas | kiwi fruit


wood pigeon

A fresh start… work wise

I have had my meeting; my last day will be the 30th of April. It is going to be very sad but it is also a relief, after all me going now doesn’t mean I can’t go back when it is a nicer place to work. And I’m going to make dam sure that I’m still around, I can’t be got rid of that easily.

Monday morning I got a phone call; it was from the director of Play Gloucestershire the company that runs Play Rangers. She has offered me a year’s contract and I start in May. I’m over the moon about it! It is my dream job.

It really has been very humbling all the offers of help and support I have had, and I’m so grateful that there are so many people in the local area who are willing to go out of their way to make sure that I’m ok and can make a living.

An Award!

I have my first award! I had been saving it to post when my blog was a year old, on the 25th of February, but I think the Internet wasn’t working so I couldn’t. Any way here it is:


I’m not really sure what it’s for but it is my first so I am pleased, Thank you goes to Kat for giving it to me (all that time ago now…)

Now I have to pass it on to some other people…

Colour it Green, Daughter of the Soil, LittleFfarm, MyZeroWaste, The Smallest Smallholding, A Slice of Life and Verona Strauss

In like a lamb

This weekend has been trying, but pleasant. It’s amazing how much more energy and how less tired I feel now I finally know what is happening at work. I woke up on Saturday and couldn’t wait to get out of bed and started on my weekend, I haven’t woke up and not felt tired for I didn’t know how long. It happened again on Sunday, even though I’d been out until after midnight at one of Rhys gigs. It was a completely different story when I woke up this morning and thought about going to work, I couldn’t think of anything better than to be able to stay in bed for a few more hours.

The most trying part of the weekend has been the broken vehicles, first my mothers van broke down on Wednesday night and then my van on Saturday morning so now we are all relaying on my brother to drive us round in his ‘pride-and-joy’ of a car and fit in fixing both our vans at the same time. And what’s wrong with them isn’t small, so I gather, but I don’t pretend for a moment to understand what is wrong with either of them; I have a brother who is very good at understanding these things for me after all.

Whisper had twins on Saturday morning, all by herself and without any help but she hasn’t bounded brilliantly with them and doesn’t have enough milk either so they are having bottles and hopefully her milk will come. Luckily we had some cholosterum saved from the goats in the freezer. Ewnice had a single Sunday evening, again all on her own without a problem, I found her when we went to bring in the ewes and lambs that had been let out to enjoy the sun, she wasn’t best happy that she had to come in with everyone and certainly wasn’t going to share the shelter in the polytunnel with  anyone other than Whisper who was already there, we learnt the hard way the year before last about shutting ewes and lambing into the polytunnel when they just ate or walked their way out of the new skin, so now they are just left with a pen for shelter in there or they can come out and sleep in the garden. This morning we had a lovely badger-face girl born, and Mophead’s sister very sadly had a massive (and I mean massive, and I’m use to big lambs) stillborn lamb but only after about an hour of me and mother trying to pull it out while the vet was on another call and then at least half an hour of the vet trying after she arrived. I think this is our first ever stillborn lamb, which is sad but considering we have over twenty ewes and have kept sheep for over five years now isn’t at all bad but still a very sad milestone to reach. Needless to say she is very sore and up set but has had antibiotics so touch wood should be fine. She knows what has happened and didn’t even look round to see the lamb when it was born and only called when we bought her in for the other sheep until she managed to let herself back out with them which is where we’ve left her as that is were she seems ‘happy.’ Flatlamb lambed this afternoon while I was at work, one of each. A black boy and a white girl, one was born with one of its front legs back but that was all the help she needed.

Other than that I have spent time in the garden this weekend, me and Rhys have planted all the Mimi potato and I sowed some spring onions and generally pottered. We hopefully have two allotments which will be ready in a couple of weeks so I wasn’t really sure what I should be doing in the garden at home. So long as we get the allotments, and I don’t want to put all my eggs in that basket until the field has been ploughed and we have our plots pegged out, it will be best to grow things like salad, etc at home and everything else on the allotment but I don’t want to fill all the space just incase…

I have finally named my kid; he is Hakim which means wise. I picked out a few other names but as he is already beautiful and strong then this one seemed to fit best, he’s already proven on more than one occasion that he isn’t the brightest ever (but very male) so his new name should help him. At the moment he is on a course of antibiotics and hasn’t been able to walk very well because of probable ‘joint-ill’ which is something lambs and goat kids get through their ‘cord’ before it is treated, which is why it’s very important to get it done as soon after they’re born as possible. I’m sure it doesn’t help that when he has a wee he then lays down in it to have a sleep (he’s still in the kitchen by the Rayburn) so often has a wet tummy from it (idiot.) He is recovering nicely and up and about well now. He’s still very greedy and is getting noticeable heaver very quickly.    

I started making some more mustard, I thought I’d try making some with some red wine vinegar instead of white wine to see what it turns out like. So far all is going well but it is still too soon to tell if it is any good.

My Silver Dorking hen is laying an egg everyday now, and my middle-sisters call ducks have started laying. I’ve bought a new incubator, not that I need a new incubator it was one of these things that I couldn’t believe how cheap it was going to be on ebay and talked myself into needing it, we’re both looking forward to it coming and hatching some eggs in it.

A weekend of promise

It is 9am, I’ve already been up and out for over an hour. 

We have a new set of twin lambs. The moring is still a crisp morning but the sun is already building up heat.

I have a whole weekend with nonthing much that has to be done and a whole list of things i want to do stretching out a head of me…


An ending

I was given notice of my redundancy today. There are still things that need to be sort but it feels like a weight has been lifted but I’m still just left ‘hanging’, I don’t know when I’ll be finishing or what I’m going to be doing for work but I’m so close to being able to start sorting things out and starting afresh.


Seeing tonight’s Sunday Roast in the oven reminded me that I still hadn’t posted about the mutton we had back last Friday. We’ve had our own mutton before but this mutton was special as it was the first time it was butchered at home.


I bought mother a ‘how to butcher’ book and DVD for Christmas, and it had been hung for two weeks instead of one (not completely sure why, but I get the impression that this is a good thing) and one weighted 28.8KG and the other 29.6KG which doesn’t sound bad and it looked like a lot of meat.


In season this week #28


cauliflower | leeks | purple sprouting broccoli | rhubarb | spring onions


bananas | blood oranges | kiwi fruit | lemons | oranges | passion fruit | pineapple | pomegranate