Day tripping!!

We originally made a pledge to go out and learn something new about our local area or visit somewhere each month…. well we missed a few, time got away from us, jobs came up, regular chores took over…. and oh yes we had a beautiful new baby!!

So we have made up for it recently with a few trips!! All disguised as plant or poultry sales!!!

A day trip to Aberaeron for the plant and craft show!!! Maybe I’ll be a stall holder next year!!

We came away with some lovely plants!! An acer, some heathers, and a few more bee friendly plants!!

An afternoon out to the smallholders boot sale and poultry sale just past Llandysul!! Where I tried to persuade James we need bunnies and ducks as pets for the boys!!! Starting him small!!! Maybe then I’ll move onto pestering for horses of our own!!!

Finally I took the boys to the Welsh Wildlife centre in Cilgerran to explore a little, have a picnic and Oo yes another plant sale!! So as I had gone solo…. no we have another fab collection of wildlife and bee friendly plants to add to the beds and banks!!

Three marvellous outings, lots of new plants meaning lots more work for us prior to getting them in!! And a few more ideas for what I want to get done around the place….

Willow maze anyone?!

All around the holding….

So….. deep breath and here goes…..

Back at the end of April…. the Polytunnel finally had its skin put on!!

We almost immediately started planting and moving some of the seed across that we had started in the house off into the tunnel….

Spring finally arrived after the seemingly relentless winter!!

The small boy found more vehicles to sit on and press all the buttons….

The fruit cage planting was finished and now it’s just a case of weeding, watering, mowing and mulching at regular intervals…

The chicks, born on the first of March, got new digs and moved in!!

With the advent of spring the endless grass and weed management begins!! We are fortunate in that we have been gifted a field and brush mower in previous years and that mower chimps through long grass, brambles, weeds etc like they are butter!! And then to get the lawn effect in certain areas I am using the little old electric mower from the old town house!! (I am going to start saving for a normal Petrol lawnmower just so I don’t have to run an extension lead out each time!

Look at the little faces!!! Grandad bought the boys a new toy!!! Look!!!! It’s a fabulous tractor!!!!

There is a plethora of blossom in our orchard!! So we are hoping for plenty of apples this year!!!

The one and only flower bed needs a darn good weeding and I need to start making more flower beds and tackling the weeds on the banks cutting them right back and digging out where I can so I can start designing and planting garden areas!! I harbour a small dream that one day our garden will become one of the yellow book gardens that open for the national gardens scheme!!

I have planted some more willow whips and have more rooting!! I am making a willow tunnel, a willow teepee and I plan to maybe try a few more willow structures around the place! I am using a combination of osier willow and basketry willow so eventually as well as winter colour the structures and other willows will become another saleable crop in both cut willow and baskets or willow creations!!

Can you spot them?! Clue- they are yellow basketry ones here!!

The Polytunnel has started to green up slowly!! We have a multitude of different vegetables starting to grow!!!

And James has been out practising using a topper attached to his tractor to cut the grass!! We have now also been out to see a topper for sale nearby and James’ offer was accepted… we have trailer to borrow and now are awaiting a collection date!!! Exciting!!!

Finally James has had opportunity to start the raised bed walls!! So we will have even more growing space for our vegetables!! (Lucky as we have loads in seed trays starting to need to be planted out!! And we have more seeds to sow for more autumnal and winter crops!!)

Phew!! Lots of work!! Lots of plans and always loads more to do!!!

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!!!

Starting to look like we are winning

Over the weekend we were back at the farm and I went hell for leather with the hedge cutters (although I am paying for it now with a poorly bad hand and wrist) The orchard field is basically now cleared other than some brambles which Mum is coming to help pick clean next weekend!! I shall probably follow her with the hedge cutters to complete the hack down once all the juicy goodness is bagged and tagged!!!

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We are starting to get some tantalising peeks into this section of woodland which we have not seen yet and we have found fencing!!! Yes fencing along the edge of the woods before they expanded over the fence!! James spent most of the weekend taking down the shambolic fencing at the top by the slurry pit bank and we have now cleared the back of the bank which means of course we have found more dumped metal work in the form of a gate and something else!! We shall see what that is when we pull it out!!

Our lovely farmer who rents our fields popped by to give us some advice on the slurry pit mess and see if he could help!! We now definitely need a digger to come to the farm to dig a channel through the bank to allow the pit to drain…. Spreading the muck on the fields is not advisable due to the amount of seeds and what not contained within!! So draining and spraying and digging out the weeds is going to be the name of the game!! But we have plenty of work for a digger to do with levelling the rest of the pit and excavating the rocks (basically lobbing them over the wall of the pit to create a complete bank all the way around!) muck heaps to be moved and everything!!

The slurry pit!

Whilst the borehole was being dug, the owner of the company brought up his mini digger to do some trenching for the pipework….. He decided to take the mini digger into the slurry pit to see what state the bog of eternal stench end was in……

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BAD news …. It is much deeper than we thought although there is a ramp by the little wall end….. And….. It is stinking gelatinous goo….. Which whilst vile in itself is also dangerous…… I.e. Could suck small people in should they walk on it…… So we have been investigating one man and his digger options and are also going to ask the farmer who rents our fields and barns if he fancies reducing his bill by spreading the goo onto orchard field for us!!!! Fingers crossed it comes off soon so we can get cracking with the slurry pit vegetable garden in earnest!!!

Looking about the farm we have a number of small jobs that a large digger would make mincemeat out of like clearing the path to orchard field, moving the compost piles to the slurry pit once excavated…. So may as well get a load done at once!!!

We don’t want anyone to be eaten by this!!!

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