Tuesday, 31 March 2015
Monday, 30 March 2015
Preparing the ground for the seed potatoes is a lengthy business. We only grow a few acres but the land used is on a strict rotation so that it is some years before the ground is returned to. This helps to prevent disease. The ground is spread with manure from the farm and mushroom compost from a local mushroom farm. It is then ploughed and rotivated to break up the soil. This is what is happening in the pictures.
Sunday, 29 March 2015
Like most farmers Brian is very keen on his Sunday roast. When he is unable to have it on a Sunday he hopes to get it the day before! He is pretty traditional in his tastes but I do try and inch in a bit of a twist. This Sunday we had a joint of roast pork. We don't produce our own so we have just bought in some pork from a neighbouring farmer. There is nothing quite like a fresh joint with some good crackling.
We do of course have our own potatoes to roast (More on the potato planting to come another day).
Traditionally we normally have sage and onion stuffing with pork but today I decided on a variation. When I was watching the television the other day The Hairy Bikers were cooking roast pork. They were cooking a sage and caramlised onion Yorkshire pudding as a side. I didn't have a recipe but thought I would give it a try.
Saturday, 28 March 2015
Lambing has started properly now so the ewes have been brought into the barn.
Friday, 27 March 2015
For our walk this month we did a walk at East Harptree that I had done on New Year's Day. You can see that walk here. We were lucky to have sunny weather. We walked up to the Smithan Chimney that I previously blogged.
Thursday, 26 March 2015
Yesterday Emma and I took a train trip to Cardiff to the university open day. This is the forth she has looked at and the one she has liked most up till now. Cardiff was bathed in sunshine which always helps. I would love to have had my camera with me but that is not what the day was about. Nevertheless I did manage to sneak a few on my phone without too much huffing and puffing from her ladyship!
I managed to capture a taster of the modern architecture.
Wednesday, 25 March 2015
My subject for Helena's Pairs is not what I had originally intended. I was swayed by a post that my sister-in-law put on facebook this morning.
Today is Lady Day (Feast of the Annunciation).This was traditionally the day that landowners started and ended tenancy agreements and "the time of entry" of farmers to vacant farms. It is 90 years today since my husband's family came to our farm. This picture must have been taken a little after that because the little chap on his mother's knee is Brian's dad. He was born here soon after they arrived. The family have subsequently gone on to purchase the farm and increase its size.
I have chosen in contrast a modern day picture of the ground being prepared for planting potatoes taken this week. I wonder what that generation would make of the many changes over those years? Tractors have not only come into use but have changed dramatically as has all machinery. The size of the fields are much greater. This particular field used to be several smaller ones until the hedges were removed many years ago.
Domestic life must also have changed. Brian's granny rarely left the farm. Her groceries were delivered and I suspect her life was one of continuous chores. Sadly nobody in this picture is now here to tell their tales. The last of the brothers died a few years ago.
Tuesday, 24 March 2015
I have already mentioned in previous blogs that part of our farm is a disused quarry/mine. The details of which can be found here. It is now an area of conservation and signs of spring are becoming evident. There are primroses emerging.
They have cut down wire in order to obtain access so must have known they were trespassing. It will heal but causes us some frustration.
Monday, 23 March 2015
It is at this time of year that the conservatory is used to its maximum. I don't have a greenhouse so bring on all my summer plants in it. Firstly however I have to budge Bella out the way.
Can it really be comfortable to sleep like? Surely the cat bed must be more cosy? Meanwhile things are set up to repot plants, take cuttings and to start sowing seeds.
The seeds are at the ready.
Some of the cuttings I took last year are coming on well. This is a type of lavender that is not totally hardy.
What I would like to know is where my good trowel has gone so I am left with the dog chewed one.....sigh...
Sunday, 22 March 2015
I always think it is nice when making recipies to remember the person who gave you the recipe. When I was working as a children's nurse it was not unusual for someone to bring in a cake or biscuits that they had made for the coffee and tea break. One of the auxiliary nurses who I worked with for many years often brought in malt loaf. It was a great favourite. Believe me it tastes nothing like those rubbery bought ones (or "boughten" as people round here would say). It is simple to make and freezes well.
You don't have to be a good cook to make this.
1 mug of "All Bran"
1 mug of mixed dried fruit
3/4 mug of sugar
1 mug of milk.
Put the above ingredients into a bowl. Mix well and leave for an hour.
1 mug SR flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp mixed spice
Mix together and put into a greased loaf tin.
Bake for 1 to 1 and 1/4 hours at 180 C.
Saturday, 21 March 2015
Today is the last day of The Winter Photographic Scavenger Hunt that I have been joining in with over the last few months hosted by Eileen and Joy. I have had great fun with this and made some more blogger friends. I have posted all photos in my blog but today I have picked out my favourite for each category.
1. Reflection in Water
2. Someone Wearing a Funny Hat
3. Ornate Door Knocker
5. Something that is over 100 Years Old
6. Winter Weather
7. Someone Dressed for the Season
8. A Fish
9. Festive Lights
10. A Letter Shape in Nature or in an Object.
11. Polka Dots
13. Stained Glass Window
14. Partly Built New Building
16. A Collection (of autographs this one done by my Grandma)
19. Street Musicians
20. Nativity Scene
There were 2 alternatives that I have added today.
A. New Life A farm is all about new life. This week we have had a lamb born. It is a little early and rather small. It is needing a little help with feeding.
B. A Decorated Tree. The tree I can see from my kitchen is doubly decorated with bird feeders and lots of birds feeding!
Many thanks again to Eileen and Joy for the inspiration. Now we can look forward to Rinda's summer hunt.