What we do Wednesday!

How to process firewood!! Well how we collect and process it!! 😂

You can find a short video here of what we do!!!

Someone LOVES the chainsaw helmet!!!

Especially the visor!!! 😂

And whilst the chain saw was out!! Himself chopped me up some logs to make a log circle in the littlie’s forest school area!

Busy weeks!!

So the past two weeks have been filled with visitors and LOTS of outside work….. not much time for crafting except in between visitors and knitting of an evening!!

We started with a few days with my sister and niece and nephew!!

Someone was very pleased with his visitors!! And we had wall building round the Polytunnel!!

Playdoh….. painting…… forest school trip!

Bird box building and painting….

Phew very busy!!

Then last week my parents came for a few days!

It turned colder…. but we have meshed the fruit cage….. planted and frost fleeced a few plants that had been delivered…. blueberries in pots in some good Ericaceous compost as our soil isn’t right for them but we need them as young sir would eat his body weight in blueberries!! Well fruit in general!!

Then we had lots more Polytunnel progress…. just a shame on the final day the wind picked up so we couldn’t get the plastic on….

We had a wood delivery too…. didn’t get as much in last year as this year has required!! It’s all a learning process and bear in mind this time last year we were only able to collect wood every other weekend!!!

Any way all this done plus toddler wrangling…. plus catering…. keeping the home fires burning…. and growing a baby….. phew

We have had a quieter weekend this weekend sans visitors!

Finishing some jobs in the fruit cage….

Using sawdust to make paths…. cable tying the mesh further and pegging it down….

Then today….

Chipping the brash piles we’ve had lying about from hedgerow sorting!! Finally seem to be making some progress in rejuvenating some of the hedgerows and hope we will be able to lay some of them in a couple of years to thicken them up and really sort them!

What a week!!

Well this week has been a whirlwind after our usual more sedate pace round here!!

Monday we were at the hospital for another growth scan and clinic….

Not a great photo but he is a larger baby than his brother and running out of space!!! (7 weeks till due date!)

Tuesday we caught up on some jobs here…. James collecting wood, helping a neighbour who is unwell, me sorting house cleaning/laundry etc!!

Wednesday James had some more wood collecting time and I had to race through a metric crap tonne of paperwork ready for a meeting with the FUW to help me fill in claims forms and field maintenance sheets…. AND for ANOTHER farm inspection…. We have had our SAF and maintenance payments for Glastir held up by the Welsh Government, both because we have been included in their audit…. where the inspectors get inspected!!! Yes total bad luck on our first year!!!!! Joy and because they had questions about some satellite imagery which again is a new thing this year…. well done us getting the double whammy!!!

So Thursday I trooped off to Carmarthen with folders worth of paperwork and completed a capital works claim, a field maintenance new online thing to alter my field boundaries now we have added the new hedgerows!! Plus take advice on becoming VAT registered etc etc!!

Raced home to grab some lunch…. then back out to the midwife!! (Now at the we want to see you every other week stage!) who bless her was running a smidge Kate and then I hotfooted it back to holding for the inspectors!!!

Well thankfully they were late and wanted to look at activity diaries first!! So I had time to get togged up for the field portion of their trip!! Thankfully everything was all good and to quote one of them “if only all inspections were this simple and straightforward!” Phew!!!

William and I then had Forest School on Friday which we both love!!

Then after lunch we collected my car from the garage all mot’d and driving like a dream again!!!

So we have had a week of interrupted naps….. short naps….. naps in the car…… and only one nap in his big boy bed!!

So no real crafty time *sob*

Managed a bit of spinning and a bit of sewing earlier in the week…

But it’s been scarily productive paperwork wise and farm wise…..

Now to spend today and tomorrow catching up with all the other jobs we need to get sorted!!!

A first try!!

So a different sort of weaving has been happening here…..

A hazel hurdle is in the making!!!

We have decided to have a go to make some prettier panels to make the gaps into what was the old slurry pit and will be our fruit and vegetable garden, safe!! Hopefully child safe!!!!

James and I selected an old beam which was big and heavy enough to form the jig…..

Then whittled the ends of some larger hazel rods to make the uprights….. lots of our hazel is very overgrown so we are working with some very bobbly bits of wood, but using what we have!!

This took ages to sort…. the beam was OLD and rather solid to drill the holes into!! And some of the uprights, in order to get the straighter bits were a tad large in diameter!!

I’ve even found a use for the ash mallet I made on my forest school leader course!!! Fantastic for bashing down the hazel whips!!!

We are at the stage of weaving in the thinner whippier bits of hazel now and over half way up the panel!!

And I’m surprised how pleased I am with it!!! We both predicted this first go would be a disaster but no….. totally a usable panel!!!

Collecting, processing and stacking

A big part of our new lives here this time of year is collecting processing and stacking wood for our Esse and logburner. The Esse allows us to cook, heat water and heat our home and the log burner tops us up on chilly nights and even sometimes allows us to cook tea on it (like baked spuds or a simple something in a saucepan) 

Luckily here on the smallholding we have 9 acres of woodland and lots of very overgrown hedges round the rougher pastures…. So this time of year if the weather is good we have to get out wood collecting every chance we get!! 

Yesterday we spent two hours out cutting and collecting wood!! And luckily a friend called past with his tractor to cut our hedgerows in the fields which entertained the small man for ages and allowed us a wee bit more time!! He adores vehicles!! 


Today however the weather has turned miserable so in between small bean wrangling and going to our nursury Ti a Fi session we have been processing and stacking what we brought up!!


Phew!! A few more days of wood burning NEXT year!! 

Fencing….. Fencing and more Fencing!!!

Last week our fencing started in a big way!!! We have been fortunate to get into Glastir which is government woodland and land management scheme, which allows us to manage the land in a way that is more geared to the local wildlife and promoting that!! 

Last Monday our top field looked like this….

 

We already have lots of woodland…..


…..and in addition to the new woodland planting we did at the start of this year covering a probably just over an acre…..


…we now have new fencing ready for new hedgerows…..


new gates….. 


Well gates of out yard piles and into fields where they need to be!! We are awaiting the arrival of three new hardwood timber gates!

So next job hedge planting and a few more gates then the paperwork!!!!