Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Whilst I realise I have been rubbish at not keeping up the blog I can just about justify it with the reasoning that our lives have been put on hold trying to get the Stables finally finished.    After such a flying start in April with Gary the Brick and his team getting the brick work done, we then hit a massive wall with disasterous carpenters and roofers and then delays with windows, problems with plumbing, ecetera, ecetera….. but finally….. WE ARE IN!!

I cannot tell you how lovely it is to be so warm.   To wake up warm, to relax warm, it’s just lovely.    We unfortunately, were not in before the cold snap hit but it almost makes it more enjoyable now we had that week when the shower head would take an hour and a half to thaw in the mornings and having to put a blow heater in the washing machine so we could take out the washing that had frozen in the machine.   You don’t realise just how much energy and stress being cold takes up.    Life was tough.    However, it is now plain sailing.    As I sit in our lovely big armchair with the woodburner aglow and a nice cup of tea by my side, I listen to my husband gently snoring upstairs as he has the first Sunday lie in that he’s had for at least a year, if not two.    I can see a squirrel clambering up a tree, a cock pheasant with his hareem of seven,… no hold on,…. Eight hens pecking at the fallen apples in the front orchard.   There is a moorhen there too and the sound track to all of this are my ducks and geese frolicking in the stream to the side of the cottage.    It’s just idyllic.    Although it would mean us moving back to the house, I cannot wait to start letting this out as a holiday let.    It’s going to be such a gorgeous place to stay.

Lovely, warm, clean, kitchen!!   And no tiles falling from the walls!

Lovely, warm, clean sitting room - Morgan thinks I'm taking a photo of him!

The pigs are doing well, although they really are so much more naughty than our last lot.    Olly and I went away last week for a night at my parents to celebrate my Dad’s 70th birthday.    My lovely friend Dee was left in charge of all of our animals, including the pigs.    We arrived home to find that the back orchard where the pigs are kept looked like the trenches in World War I!   The pigs were barrackaded in with sticks of hazel and willow, garden furniture, bamboo canes, the lot!    Poor old Dee had come up one evening to check on them and the little blighters had got through the electric fencing.    The worst part was that they had started to root up the lawn and make a right mess.    Dee did a brilliant job of getting them back in and with the help of another friend of ours, Jayne, managed to restore calm once more.     It was only the next day when I realised that the connector had fallen off the electric wire hence rendering it nothing more than a piece of orange string keeping the pigs in – or not!

Our gorgeous, naughty pigs eating beetroot!

So, life can resume again.    I’ve got to try and get as many bookings for the Stables as possible for 2011, landscape and prune both orchards so they look fantastic by Spring, market the pork for the pigs and source a really good butcher to make delicious cuts of meat and mouthwatering sausages.   Olly is arranging a festival on the farm in May so there is much to be done for that as well as coppicing all of the willows on the farm (there are many!) and, most importantly, starting work on the main house.     As my dear old Grandmother used to say, ‘Crack on!!’.

Coppicing the big willow tree in the Mill Pond at the weekend

Job well done, and lots of wood to season!

And finally.....   I love the Stables!!

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