Sunday, December 28, 2014

I would like to wish you all a belated merry Christmas and a happy new year. 

We have been rather busy and are now enjoying some much earned Christmas lazing around! 

I finished work on Friday 19th December and it all started then! With pork being boned and diced ready for making pigs in blankets. 

Saturday I spent the day hot smoking pork loins for our thank you presents for friends and family. Mum then gave them a marmalade glaze, they looked and tasted fantastic. 

Sunday we cold smoked our hams and cheese. Several friends also brought their produce over for smoking. We had the smoker running for 14 hours, so everything was really well smoked.

Mick also came and dressed the turkeys. We had a really good production line with them all boxed, with their giblets, rosemary and cooking instructions within two and a half hours. We had a real whopper of a bird weighing in at a massive 12.04kg, that is safely tucked up in the freezer for us later in the year. 

All in all a very productive day. No stopping us though! Monday morning we picked up the beef carcass just after 7am. Gareth just managed to hang it up himself in the fridge before a bacon sandwich and then Eddie the butcher arrived. 

Wow is all I can say that man is an excellent butcher, he boned and rolled most of the beef. It worked really well, he broke the carcass down and then passed anything for boning out for diced and minced to Gareth. 

Tractor Bumble arrived mid afternoon to stay with us, we had promised him Dexter Beef steak on his return journey and what perfect timing. So we cooked T-bone steak for Mum, Dad, Nanny, Grandad, Tractor Bumble and Chris. Despite so many people Gareth cooked it a treat and we all sat down at more or less the same time for steak with all the trimmings. God bless Red Boy. 

After a late night we didn't wake up until 8.30am a real treat normally we are up long before that. That was only prompted by a phone call that an old friend Kev was on his way to collect his turkey! 

So after being a little late finishing the animals we packed all of our orders and I delivered some and then Gareth set off to drop of a few to work friends. Another long day but so rewarding and proud to see what we had produced. 

Christmas Eve was far more laid back to start with, as one person collected their meat another arrived by 1pm all the turkeys apart from 1 had been collected. The fridge was looking bare! Gareth went to drop the meat off at his parents which left me at home with Mum, Dad and Chris finishing those last minute bits for Christmas, or noticing than the brand new range cooker had decided that one oven wouldn't work. GREAT with a turkey, pork and beef to cook on Christmas Day! But we decided we would just have to manage and that Grandma would cook the pork only for me to hear HELP, THE COOKERS ON FIRE! Mum was warming the wok for the stir fry we were having for dinner some how with the new massive worker burner the oil had caught fire and the top of the cooker was engulfed in flames. They managed to put it out and all was under control. What a Christmas Eve.

Christmas Day flew past, we were all spoilt. Gareth and I had a certain theme with our pressies BABY. Which is perfect we have many of those essential things for those first few months. After a request I made a changing Mat must have farm animals on it gareth found one with sheep and Mum and Dad had a wonderful canvas of photos done for me of the animals.  Thank you to everyone who spoilt me I am very lucky. 

The food was excellent and a real treat to have home grown pork, turkey and beef. As well parsnips and leeks from a friends vegetable garden. 

I must say since Christmas, being pregnant has caught up with me I have done nothing but sleep. I have been trying to write this post for days! The baby has started moving around and generally as we are going to bed the baby is awake at around 9.30pm it's great to feel! But today I have been a little more productive. 

The pigs are in the concrete stie now, much better for them. Although they are nearly ready to go. Good old Uncle Maurice and Grandad have cleaned the other side of the stie out where the turkeys have been. I am so lucky with all the help they give us. So already for two new pigs in January. 

I have weeded some of the garden, trimmed back plants and planted bulbs. My plan is to get it finished before I can't bend over as easily! 

Haylage is all moved thanks to Uncle Maurice and Gareth and I am just finishing this post with my feet up in front if the fire with a lovely lime and ginger cordial! 

I hope I've not bored you with such a long post, I hope you have all had a wonderful Christmas and I wish you a happy new year. Here is to 2015. 

Monday, December 8, 2014

I'm sorry it has been so long, life is just very busy at the moment getting ready for Christmas.

It's been a hard week emotionally here! Tuesday morning saw the departure of another three lambs to the abbatoir.  Followed by Red the Dexter leaving us on Friday. I don't struggle with the lambs as much as Mum, I like it that they always go in a group. But the cattle are different we only raise one at a time and of course they are friendly. Which I don't think is a bad thing, I think it shows they have been raised with love. But it's very hard, he was a true gent to the end, he loaded well, travelled well and walked of the trailer into the barn at the other end. I was very proud of him. 

I did worn the lads at the abattoir,  I am pregnant and my hormones may get the better of me so please have the Kleenex ready! But I was strong and kept myself composed. The day flew past as I was out for the afternoon with customers from work. However when I got home to find the offal and his hide, the days events really tugged at my heart strings. 

Because Red was such a beautiful colour we have made enquiries to have his hide tanned into a rug, it's going to cost about £200, but it will be great that he will live on and we have utilised him as much as possible. Currently it's laying in the trailer on a table with 12kg of salt smothered across it. It's much wetter than a sheep skin and we have had to jack the trailer up with the jockey wheel to enable the liquid to run off. Fingers crossed it will be suitable to be tanned and we will have a rug. 

The carcass is being hung at the abbatoir   until the 22nd when it will be delivered home and butchered for our Christmas Orders. 

I also have the three lamb skins back and I am salting them ready for tanning into rugs.

We have been out twice in the past few weeks with the preserves. First to the local secondary school, which was ok, far fewer people that the previous year but we sold 15 jars. On Saturday we attended the Wilderness a Foundations Fun Festive Fayre. It was a rather chilly morning with a hard frost, but the sun was shinning. We sold an amazing 47 jars and met some wonderful people including a couple who live in Crete, who were telling us tales of their small scale farming. There was also a visiting farm from Bedfordshire, they had a donkey, a tiny dexter cow, a goat, sheep, ducks, chickens, geese and two Labradors all in one pen. I did loose mother to them a few a few times. I think she dreams of retiring and taking her sheep off to visit local schools. 

I also had my twenty week scan last week, all is well and the sonographer was excellent she explained everything she was measuring. Although when it came to the baby having a photo taken for us it didn't wish to pose it was fed up. So Claudia the vet who works with mum said I could lay on the operating table and she would get me a better photo at the vets for me!

The fridge is nearly finished, a good clean out this Saturday and the refurbished sink plumbed in and we are ready.  The drink frame has all been powder coated it looks fantastic!

Saturday is the day, Mick the turkey man arrives at 7am and the years raising of turkeys will come to an end. We have two birds left to find a Christmas Table for, if anyone is looking for a bird. 

Anyway off to bed now I am finding i need a little more sleep each night now. 

Sunday, November 16, 2014

This week has flown by, I was 29 on Monday and goodness me wasn't I spoilt. Gareth brought me a new pair of Le Chamaeu Wellies, they are wonderful. Mum and Dad gave me money and brought us our first baby things, some baby grows, dummies and a rather lovely baby on board sign. 

One of my customers brought me a lovely Victoria sponge from his daughters tea shop. 

Dad has been away working all week, we have really missed him, but Gareth and I have been busy finishing bits in the fridge ready for dad's return each night. Today Dad, Maurice and Gareth has been bust putting up the wall sheets in the front of the fridge, it's really taking shape and we are on track to be finished for Christmas.

Mum and I have made over 50 jars of chutney, marrow and beetroot and mint. The shop we are supplying have sold their first ten jars so Nanny has delivered more this week.  It's been nice having a break from preserve making, but we still have produce to turn into preserves. So it was great to cross two off the list. I have labelled the marrow so just the beetroot left. We have red onion marmalade, pumpkin chutney and rosemary jelly still to make. It would seem the 4 oz jars are the most popular. We are hoping to order Mum a new cooker this week, we really have killed the current one. We had a lovely rather large joint of pork for dinner and it wasn't cooked all the way through so we have put it back in the oven, six hours later and it's still not cooked! Poor cooker she has been a faithful cooker but she is now exhausted and ready for the scrap heap. 

Mum and Dad were out at my grandparents for dinner last night so we enjoyed wonderful rump steak from Dennis, god bless him! 

The cattle have spent all week being hungry, but Red gave us a lay in this morning 7.45 before he was mooing for breakfast. They are really enjoying bananas as one of their five a day. They would do anything for a banana.  

We are off with some fellow smallholders tomorrow to give a talk to South East Essex Organic Gardeners, so I am creating a PowerPoint presentation of photos, so I shall wish you all a good week and carry on uploading photos. 

Sunday, November 9, 2014

It's been a lovely weekend, I love it when you feel such a lot has been achieved!

We have been busy preparing for the sheep and cows to come home for winter this weekend.

Saturday saw mother and I moving All the electric netting for the sheep, about 300 meters of it. There is nothing that annoys poor mum more, it gets twisted, she stands on it and I even recall her falling over wrapped up in it once! But we have a good system now, I move it and lay it out flat and Mum pegs it into the ground. A few hours later job done! 

A nice warm up and poached egg for breakfast meant we were ready to prepare the barns for their winter guests. 

Dude and Fred the ram are in their winter quarters in the horses barn. Barricaded in as well as possible. Fred is rather revered up the moment, he should be working by now but as we aren't having lambs he will have to stay in the barn away from the ewes. 

The lambs are now in the barn next to the cows, with a few ewes who will be moved later this week. They will be finished on our haylage and then sold as freezer boxes of lamb. Apart from Peaches who will be joining the flock. 

We collected the cattle Sunday lunch time, thanks to Simon and Sally they were ready and waiting in the horses yard. All we did was drop the ramp and move the gate and and they walked on. They are now snuggled up in their straw bed. 

I can't believe how much Tulip has grown she is a real young lady now. Sadly Red will be departing on the first of December but he has had a lovely summer.

We have filled the Christmas Turkey Pen with bark, it was starting to get a little muddy.

Mum made me and early birthday cake, which was lovely for tea at three! I can't believe I'm 29 tomorrow. I remember leaving school like it was  yesterday!

Two excellent meals this weekend. Jamaican curry made with some mutton from our friend Nigel on Saturday. It was rather warming,  the peppers from the poly tunnel were a little hotter than I thought. But a really delicious way to use mutton. 

Tonight we enjoyed a pot roast Dexter beef joint. Delicious!!!

Anyway I wish you all a good week. 


Friday, November 7, 2014

I thought I had posted this a few days ago needless to say I posted it on the East Essex Smallholders Blog! So second time lucky here goes!

Goodness me what a long time it has been. I have so much to tell you all!

I think our first news should be that Gareth and I are pleased to tell you a new addition is coming to Furzedown in April. No it's not a lamb, piglet or calf but a baby! 

I hope that this place will be a wonderful home for child and we can't wait.

I do think that our smallholding plans will have to slow just a little next year to accommodate our change in life. One of the main things being Mum isn't going to have lambs it's just a little close to me having the baby and as I won't be able to help I think it's a sensible idea. There is no reason why we can't buy some weaned lambs for fattening so we can have some lamb. 

It seems so long ago, nearly a month when we sent lambs off. We had a lovely weekend butchering. Thanks to you tube Dad and Gareth had a go at boning the shoulders. Such a huge task but once rolled and tied looked fantastic.  

I also spent ten days tending and  salting the sheep skins. I did four of ours and five of Nigels. His skins were Jacobs and some cross breed brown skins. I think they will look amazing if the make it through the process.  Finally after two hours packaging them all up they left on TNT.  I look forward to them returning in January. 

Maurice has used his Trusty Tractor to lift some of the potatoes. That machine is a beast she makes him sweat, but what a good job it does. There are still some to come up but we will defiantly be doing it again next year. I have planted some onions and garlic in there now. 

We also hosted the second East Essex Smallholders Group Apple Day . Several families attended and we pressed a huge amount of apples into juice and cider. 

Dad has been working on the fridge in preparation for the Christmas meat to be prepared. It's looking really good.

Mum and I are booked to attend a couple of events to sell our preserves at. Not to mention they are now stocked at  Maldon's Tourist Information Centre.  

Busy weekend this weekend, the cows are coming home for the winter. The lambs are going into the barn for winter. And if time allows the ewes are coming home. 

We are busy taking orders for Christmas. We have a couple of turkeys left as well as Dexter Steak, mince and diced beef. 

Gareth is working nights this week and Mum has been to my Grandparents for Dad and I have enjoyed a lovely roast chicken of ours. I am really enjoying our delicious meat birds.  A definite for next year. 

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Such a lot happens in a few weeks. We have mainly been preserving, Mum and I have made over 300 jars of jams, jellies and chutneys since the first if August. 

It has been such a huge never ending job, trying to keep up with using the produce as it is ready to harvest. Not to mention the labelling all jams and jellies have to have the sugar content recorded using a refractometer. 

We still have pumpkins and marrows to use and now grapes. We have also been asked to supply Maldon Tourist Information Centre with our preserves. So we are thrilled! 

The gates sales aren't doing so well, a lovely passerby stole six jars, I was so disappointed that for  all our hard work someone stole £20 of jars. I do wonder sometimes about the people who live in our community sometimes.

My faith in man kind returned today. We attended the Michalmus Market for Totham Church, what a lovely afternoon. We met so many lovely people. We sold our preserves and a large box of squashes. A great afternoon with fellow EESG members Sue with her soap and Garteths Dad with his turned woodwork and Uncle Norman with his bird boxes. 

We also had lots of interest in our Christmas meats. The order book is now open.

Sad times this week ahead, we have lambs going to the abatoir. Their carcases are sold as freezer boxes to friends and family and their skins will be salted and sent for tanning. 

All the animals are well, enjoying the extended summer and the great weather we are having. 

Anyway I hope you all have a good week and I will endeavour to try and pop in for an update next week.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

So much can change in a week

I can't believe what has happened in the last few days!

Mum has been following a chap on Facebook, called Tractor Bumble. A man called Peter Matheson is driving a vintage massey ferguson tractor called Annie from John o Groats to Lands Ends and then off to Scandinavia to see the Northern Lights and if thats not enough, back again!

On Monday he was heading towards Maldon enroute to catch the ferry from Harwich. He was in need of a place to stay. So an excited mother offered Furzedown to him. I forgot to say he is towing a caravan called Michelle and his dog Amber is travelling on the Tractor with him.

So at around 3pm he phoned to take us up on the offer, so Mother set off to meet him on the outskirts of Maldon (normally an area she doesn't drive to, for those that no Mother she hates driving!) Peter travels at 13MPH!

I arrived home at about 5.30pm to find Nanny and Grandad having tea with Peter and putting the world to rights like they had known each other for years. It turns out he used to be a police man and in 1993 was the officer on duty when a drunk driver rolled their car into my Grandparents Garden! He had also brought Michelle the Caravan from Althorne ( A village about 5 miles down the road).

Peter had requested after a rough previous night he needed Beer and Steak. So i set about orangising an evening out which i must say is most out of the blue for us, we are normally in bed by 9.30pm!

We headed to the Blue Boar Hotel, Mum, Dad, Gareth, Nanny, Grandad and Peter. I must say it was fabulous food and such great company, i laughed so much my cheek bones hurt. I can't beleive what a wonderful evening we had with someone we had only met a few hours before.

We were able to offer Peter a second night at Furzedown whilst he caught up with some of his friends. Mother managed to wash all of his clothes and bed linen in preparation for the next stage of his journey and i managed to get him a bit of publicity, this morning i was pleased to pick up the Essex Chronicle and see Peter front page!

So for everyone reading this take a moment to look at Peters Website and Facebook Page.
What a fantastic cause he is doing this for and such an immense journey. So please offer your support and sponsor him!

  We hope to see Peter on his return Journey. We have promised him Dexter Steak.

We also have more news. I have been contacted by Maldon Tourist Information Centre asking if they can stock out Preserves. So we hope that in the coming weeks Furzedown Produce will be in the High Street in Maldon.

The gate sales have been fantastic today, we have sold 6 jars. The favourites seem to be Sticky Fig Chutney, Marrow Chutney and Damson Jam.

We have pigs going next week, so if anyone would like pork please email me. We also have a new flavour of sausages available. Chilli and Mango. Alongside our ever popular Cumberland, Breakfast, Furzedown Fiery Dragons and Pork and Ale.

I hope all of our readers are well and hope to catch up again soon.


Sunday, September 7, 2014

Well what a weekend, we have a new toy at Furzedown a log splitter for the tractor! What an amazing bit of kit. Combined with Maurice dropping off some more tree trunks Furzedown will be a warm house this winter.

This weekend is the first weekend we haven't been making preserves for weeks. Its been quite nice i have achieved loads.

All jars are labelled and packed away. The hams are smoked and i have done so much in the vegetable garden. 

After a busy morning of Gareth and I harvesting We have a huge glut of squashes im hoping to try and sell some to a shop in Maldon.

Father in law Terry finished fitting the railings on the decking. I forgot how lovely it is sitting our there with a pot of tea in the afternoon sun!

The weekend was finished with a home grown dinner. Chicken, beans, potatoes and chard.

I love our life! 

Sunday, August 31, 2014

You have probably noticed we have been a bit quite the last few weeks. We have been busy preserving as we are booked in to sell at three events before Christmas.

We have made:
Cherry Plum Jam
Damson Jam
Damson and port Jelly
Victoria Plum Jam
Victoria Plum and Vanilla Jam
Marrow Chutney
Sticky Fig Chutney
Green tomato Chutney
Plum, ginger and chilli chutney
Crab Apple Jelly
Crab Apple Jelly with Chilli 

We have made over 100 jars and most of it is all labelled. 

The animals are all well, Tulip has grown so much and seems to be very hairy.

The lambs have been weaned and are now being looked after by Auntie Disney. Hopefully a month of lush grass and some of them can go. We have a few orders for our sheepskin rugs.

The horses are coming in at night now as the grass has run out. 

The last five weeks has been fantastic every Sunday a fully home grown dinner. Tonight was shoulder of pork with spuds, beans, kale, chard and parsnips from the garden. I don't think life gets much better! 

Dad and Maurice have returned from the Great Dorset Steam Fair with lots of goodies including a Milking Machine so hopefully next time Tilly has a calf we can have milk.

Why are weekends over so quick? Back to work tomorrow!

Monday, August 18, 2014

I would like to thank all of our pork customers. All apart from a small joint which made excellent pulled pork and six chops was all that was left. 

I have been busy making jam to sell at the gate. Damson jam as well as a damson and port jelly. Mum has been busy making chutney, our old favourite marrow and stickyfig chutney with figs from my father in laws trees.

So watch the gate space all preserves will be being sold out there in the coming weeks.

Tulip the calf has brown so much, she is turning into a right young lady. 

This year we have been working on the drains at home and replacing our rotten decking. It has been a huge task involving all the family but its finally taking shape.

I have also had my first Turks Turban squash. Im not sure i can eat it yet, just look at it!

Our friends are visiting from Austraila and its great we are trying to fit in asmuch  Furzedown Food as possible. Sunday saw roast home grown turkey, potatoes, beans, chard and kale.

Anyway last day at work today and then a whole week off, i cant wait.

Monday, August 4, 2014


Its 5am and i thought i would squeeze a quick blog post in before heading off to the abattoir. Yes it pork time again, we will be making sausages including a new Beer and Ale, made with a beer called Dark Horse from our local Micro Brewery.

The wave of sadness is currently right in front of me, however i am very proud of the latest two boys, they have loaded well and i hope to give them a good short journey. Some people might laugh, but I think its the last thing I can do for them, to ensure they have a nice comfortable ride to Burnham on Crouch.

We have had lots of joint orders this time, and so many old fashioned comments about can we have chops with the kidney on. Currently we have Half a pig sold and just over another half with chops and joints.

I have spruced our chalk board at the road up, buy giving it a lick of paint and treating myself to some new chalk! Its looks really good.

 Mum had to work on Saturday so i set myself the task of making my first ever jam With Cherry Plums from where the sheep go and stay during the summer. They were a bit of a nightmare due to their size and pips. But after some expert phone advice from our friend Toni who is an old hand at preserving its all in jars and ready for labelling. Its such a nice jam, because its tart but sweet. We had the chance to try it in a lovely Victoria Sponge that Mum made on Sunday.

Maurice has a new Rotavator, he didn't tell me and was waiting for me to notice, However my eyes don't miss a thing and i noticed it that night. Its smaller than the others and good for getting in those tight corners.

Well i'm back from dropping the pigs off a little earlier than normal so i have planted two rows of leeks in the garden. Not bad! I think i will try this 4.30am every morning.

I forgot to say home grown dinner on sunday, including chicken, potatoes, leeks, chard, and yorkie puds made with our eggs!

Anyway time to get changed and get on my way to work.


Tuesday, July 29, 2014

I keep laughing and joking at the moment that my head needs booking in irvan upgrade. Work is so busy at present my head cant take anymore, things seem to go in one ear and out the other. Tonight proved this! I was just about to come up for a shower, i filled my evening drink up to think the water pressure is low, which sparked the thought did i turn the hose off from watering the pumpkins and marrows, NO!!!!!! Very well watered plants! I was amazed whilst being outside at dusk the huge amount of bats, i do love seeing them.

I am collecting three more pigs on Saturday! That will be our lot for the year a total of 15. Not bad. 

We are planning the weekend after to make sausages so the order book is open for joints, chops, hams, bacon and sausages. 

I helped mum worm the sheep on saturday, first time i have seen them for a while. Lotties lamb, Peaches is a stunner, every young lamb would love nice long curvacious legs and hair like her! A definate addition to the Furzedown Flock.
Well time for bed, sorry for the lack of photos i must clear my photo memory on my phone.

P.s i forgot the last  lot of this years meat  chixks have arrived.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

I'm sitting at the kitchen table tying this post after a incredibly hot and humid week. The rain is pouring, and we have thunder lightening. I'm not a huge fan of storms but one we really need the pasture is so dry and in need of this rain.

We had to bring the sheep home from the kennels last night as they have eaten all of the grass and been push on next doors fence.  So hopefully this down pour will give it a new life and they can go back.

Pork sales have been absolutely amazing this last few weeks. Thank you to everyone who has purchased from us, we hope you are enjoying it as much as we do. 

We have had about eight new customers all enjoying sausages and pork joints. I even had a Mr Pigg buy pork from us! 

I was meant to have had yesterday off work, however that didn't
 Go to plan my phone started at 8am and I think the last call was 3.30pm. Every time I started something I ended up back in the house on my laptop. In between calls I spent the day yesterday smoking bacon and a ham. I look forward to a bacon sandwich on Saturday morning. 

We are off to the Southminster Show tomorrow, we are taking the goats. Dyes the kids are allowed out. I really hope they behave, I am planning on sitting next to their pen with with my spinning wheel in a perfect world. However I could end up sitting in the pen with them on halters!

Mum is taking Teresa the Oxford Down with her lamb Minie Minie. Dad is smoking and making sausages. Other members will be selling their produce, making bread and bringing chooks.

I love the Southminster show it's a great day.

I have planted lots of kale in our patch in the wood, I wrapped it up yesterday to protect them from the cabbage whites. Everything is looking really good. 

Last Sunday was a great dinner, we had home grown chicken, spuds freshly dug from the wood and lettuce from the poly tunnel. 

Anyway I'm off for a swim now before a few hours of work. 

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

The three pig carcasses were delivered home today. My sadness went as we opened the fridge doors and saw three excellent carcasses. The fat content was good. The last  lot of pigs were very fatty, but we tried to slow the feeding of these and are very pleased with the end carcass. 

I have been slacking with pork sales, we have sold 3/4 of a pig however i have lots   Left if any of our followers on here would like to purchase some this weekend. 

We have chops and joints as well as taking orders for bacon and hams. Not forgetting sausages as well! We have a new flavour this time a pork and sage sausage. We are also going to bd experimenting  with a pork and ale sausage. With ale from our local
Micro brewery Farmers Ales. We are going to use Gareths favourite beer from them Dark Horse which brews out at over  7%. 

Our hay was bailed this evening, luck would have it our days of hay carting are over with the marvels of modern technology. It will be loaded on the trailer for us and then we will fork it off when we bring it home.

Anyway i am off to bed early start in the
Morning Gareth is leaving home at 5.45.

P.s i have a  crook neck squash growing.

Friday, June 27, 2014

The cows have gone on holiday for the summer to our friend Sallys house. They have grass up to their backs and its hard work being a cow, you have to eat and sleep all day. 

The turkey poults have arrived ready for christmas. We have 25 this year, so if any of our readers would like a turkey please reserve  yours now to avoid disappointnent. We had such huge demand last year we could have sold twice the amount. 

We have also got another six meat chicks  to help stock the freezer up, hopefully by the end of the year we will have raised 18 for the freezer.

The garden is coming on well, the flower bed in the back garden has been im bloom since february. We have a huge array of perenials which are increasing year on year. Most the lavender is in flower and the dahilas are stunning. Mum was given a really pretty french lavender plant with white ears for her birthday, its so pretty. 

We also have the most magnifiscent arum lillies. I must take a photo and post tomorrow. 

Most if the potatoes are in flower so i hope soon we will be earing Furzedown Spuds.

The pumpkins/marrows/squashes are doing well i keep watering them and fingers crossed soon we can enjoy
Picking and  eating our crop.

The sheep are all well, mum is busy checking them at three other locations. She had a scare with Fred earlier in the week, he didnt come when he was called  and the grass is so long Mum
Couldnt see him. She is also really scared of Fred and his mate David the jacob, they always see Mum as a butting post. 

So she had to drive home to collect my brother to only find out Fred was in a really deep sleep enjoying the sun. Silly boy!

The horses are living out at the moment they are having a lovely time and are as fat as butter. 

We are making sausages next weekend, so an early start on Tuesday delivering pigs to the abbatoir. 

Im off to bed now i will share the lilly photo tomorrow. 

Over and out 


Wednesday, June 11, 2014

I can't believe I haven't posted for a month, I am sorry to all of our followers. Summer is such a busy time of year. Time is very short at the moment, for me everyone seems to be building, and I am clocking up the hours at work. I am working on bathrooms at the moment about 48 of them for a prestige development in Hertfordshire. Hard work but very rewarding! Poor Gareth is working in Dover and a Dad is in Ramsgate so both are having to use the dreaded Dartford Crossing everyday. Mum is busy at work and also training for the race for life! She is marching around the Prom is Maldon as I type. If anyone would like to show their support to this good cause and Mums enthusiasm by sponsoring her please email her

Well all is well on the animal front, Esme didn't have a kid so her time with stinky didn't pay off. We do have a new steer Red. He is wonderful, he kisses me, I don't no how we are going to eat him! He might have to stay. He has settled in really well with Tilly and Tulip who has grown so much.

Most of the sheep have gone on their summer holidays now so it's quiet at home. The pigs are growing well, we have 7 left, and will be making sausages again at the end of this month. 

The vegetable garden is going well, mum has been busy! Although she is so disheartened at how the slugs are eating everything and the pigeons stripped her broccoli in a day. We now have a brassica cage and hopefully that will help. SLUGS the Bain of our life! Any tips please do tell us.

Our extended veggie garden in the wood is looking good the potatoes are flowering, we have leeks and sweet corn planted as well as a huge array of pumpkins, squashes and marrows on the muck heap. We are just staring to eat our raspberries this week. 

Elderflower cordial is made and will be for sale at the gate this weekend. 

Anyway off to work so I will endeavour to catch up soon.


Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Busy day shearing! All the sheep are now ready for summer!

The shearers sister Nancy has told me all about Halifax mill
 And how they will process small quantities of fleeces. So i am going to arrange to send a few of ours! I want it washed and carded into batts so i can spin it.

When we put Esme in the field, she insists of eating the trees on the way. She really is a big goat!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Its been a lovely weekend the weather has been good and we have done so much gardening.

Mum has all the gowing under way and a fair amount has been planted out. 
Maurice has been sieving muck with me with it so well rotted its like compost. 

We have so many different beans, broad beans, french beans, patio beans, climbing beans and runner beans.

The potatoes are doing really well, Gareth keeps telling me off for watering them! Most of the onions and shallots are planted and seem to be doing well.

Dad and Maurice have finished the drains for the cutting room and Maurice has restored the ground level by rotevating and Gareth harrowing with the quad.

Busy day tomorrow the shearer is coming! We have our sheep and Nigels to have their hair done. What Am i going to do with all those lovely fleeces? Make time use my wheel and spin, spin, Spin!

A photo to finish, Tilly and her baby!