Monday 27 December 2010

Christmas Holiday dyeing

As we're not able to do a great deal outside at the moment I decided to dye some of my BFL sock yarn

Brown, Green and Yellow BFL sock wool - the colours are a bit lighter than shown here

Pinks and Greys - BFL Sock yarn

Rainbow coloured Merino sparkle, but don't know if the sparkle will show in this picture

Multi coloured Merino and bamboo

Yellow and Brown BFL wool

Pink & Purple BFL Wool

Grey, Pink & Yellow BFL Wool
Now just need to try and upload them to my Folksy shop and see what sells!

Friday 24 December 2010

Merry Christmas to you all

Just wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
The house is cleaned, animal hay racks full, water troughs unfrozen, wood box full of split wood, so we can now relax and enjoy a bottle of wine to start the celebrating Christmas.

Tuesday 21 December 2010

A couple of sucesses

On Monday the sheep we sent to the mart reach top price for the day, that will certainly help with the winter feed bill.
This morning I received in the post my certificate for the SAGE Level 2 Book Keeping exam I took back in October. I got a distinction!!! Which means I got a pass mark of between 85 - 95%. It's the first exam I've taken since I was a school, so I'm really pleased.

Sunday 19 December 2010

Ice skating in Wellies....

is fast loosing it's appeal! As we walked the dogs this morning, we delivered our Christmas cards and walking down the road to one of the farms I "measured my length" as they say around here when you slip your full length on the ice. No harm done to me, just felt a bit of an idiot with 2 dogs looking at me.
This week we've had a rapid thaw, followed by freezing winds and low temperatures which have turned the slush into ice. Now we have some more snow, which has covered the ice!
Unlike a lot of people we managed to get a delivery of oil, so we will have heat and able to cook over the festive period.
We managed to get the 2 cull ewes to the mart on Monday and we got the top price for our Scotties so we were very pleased. We're hoping to get 2 more sheep to the mart tomorrow, weather permitting of course.
I also started my new job on Tuesday. The people I'm working with seem really nice and the work is not too demanding, and as I'm just working 19 hours a week I can do my other work on the smallholding as well, so it's the best of both worlds.
As this is the final run up to Christmas and more importantly the shortest day on the 21st, all we seem to get done at the moment is feed the animals, check and fill up their water troughs, fill the wood boxes for the fires, come in for lunch and then out again around 2.30 to check waters again. But once Christmas is over and we're into the New Year the days seem somewhat longer and warmer, and then it's only 8 weeks to lambing........

Sunday 12 December 2010

A new form of greeting

At the moment whenever we meet up with our farming neighbours, the first question that is asked is "How many barn roofs have you lost?"
There is not a farm we know of that hasn't lost some sort of barn/shed roof, but thankfully no stock has been injured that we know of.

Two lots of good news

The first is that I've at last got a part time job, and as with all of these things, on Wednesday I was offered 2 jobs. Both same hours, same rates of pay and the same distance from home, all be it in opposite directions. I decided to take the one with Tees Components, as this was the one that I would have been most disappointed if I didn't get it. I start on Tuesday. Tim will now be able to catch up on his afternoon day time T.V viewing! I think not, those that know Tim will know how much he hates day time T.V.
The second is that there has been a massive thaw over the last couple of days. The only down side is that where the snow is compacted, it is now very dangerous to walk on and yesterday getting the truck out to go to Saltburn Farmer's Market, Tim very nearly hit the gatepost as the truck went slip, sliding towards the gate.
So today Tim and I have spent the day digging the track of snow and ice. We were able to use the tractor to pick up some of the snow, but where the ice was compacted we had to use a pick and spades, putting the snow/ice in the bucket of Gnasher to pile it all up in the yard.
Another reason for getting the snow off the track is that we are hoping to get 2 cull ewes off the mart tomorrow morning. The 2 ewes are 2 Scottish Black Faced ones that have been "covered" by Gus 3 times now, which can only mean one thing. They are not in lamb, so we do not to carry them through the rest of the winter. Unfortunately it will mean that we will only have 26 ewes to lamb next year, which is a pain, but can't be helped. Let's hope we get a good price for them as we did last Monday for the 4 fatties we took to the mart.
Last Monday's mart was supposed to be the big Christmas Fat Lamb Mart with over 1600 lambs booked in. Needless to say the snow put paid to that, with many farmers from out laying farms on the Moor well and truly snowed in. Now with the thaw, it will be interesting to see how many sheep and lambs get to the mart.

Wednesday 1 December 2010

Another roof bites the dust...

Tim was working in the barn this morning, sorting out the electrics, so that we could have some lights outside and more importantly, power to the garage for the freezers. When he heard a creak, then a whoosh, and the roof at the end on the main barn came down.

To be honest, we half suspected this bit of the roof could go as the roof perlins were not very meaty and had a bit of a bow in them yesterday. We checked the roof where Finn and his girls are, as their part of the barn is now on it's own. Some of the trusses have a bit of a bow in them and so I spent some of the day taking some of the snow off the roof, to take some of the weight off of the roof. I think it will be an on going job!
We got all of the hay into the lambing barn and both of us are quite tired. I'd forgotten how heavy the bales of hay were!
I wonder if Santa's sleigh will be big enough to bring us a new barn this Christmas?