It has been one of those weeks this week, just throw in a visit from a journalist, a wake and funeral (neighbour) and a visit to a hospital to visit a friend and it seems to turn the week into turmoil, well, not quite but certainly busy!
Yours truly will be on CountryWide on Radio One tomorrow morning at 8:10, I was interviewed by Suzanne Campbell for a programme about rural businesses so she chatted to me while I fed calves and kept an eye on a calving cow – we chatted about agriculture, 2015, the visit from the Chinese vice President, Garrendenny Lane, Write on Track, whether farmers should blog and more.
I’m hoping I’ll come across as reasonably competent and articulate! Our feeding of calves will probably be seen as somewhat archaic as most farmers will use the teat system (we use it in one shed with 12 calves) or even more modern systems. ?With us, it is a case of getting a daily workout carrying the milk across into individual buckets for the calves!
Our windmill was installed last week but hasn’t been fully connected yet. It is quite a small one at 15 metres high and will supply about 40% of our farm and home electricity (our electricity bills are about ?600 a month). We have been vaguely looking into wind energy for the last few years but had neither the finance or time to do anything about it. ?Larger windmills require planning permission but when the 2011 budget allowed for the reclaim of the VAT and free connection to the national grid if connected by 29th Feb 2012, we decided to go for it with one we could just about afford and perhaps upscale in a few years.
What else happened this week? Well, we’ve over 80 calves now so we’re two thirds of the way through the calving, 9 cows were sold in the mart, I collected our goat meat today (2 large roasts, loads of chops, some mince and diced goat meat) and swopped a goat carcase with some pork from the lovely Oldfarm. So, we’re having rashers and sausages tomorrow with some goat chops on Sunday. Lamb chops are one of my favourite meals so I’ll let you know how they compare 🙂
Update: If you would like to hear my Countrywide interview, you can listen to it here.
All things nice...
You have been busy! 80 calves that’s alot. We had 5 this week. I have started to help with the milking too and feeding the calves on the farm. I’d say your glad it’s the weekend now, hope you get some time to relax. Very good, the windmill is great, our neighbour has one! They really need to change the fed in tariff to the grid though.
All things nice…
There is no way I could eat goat chops or any part of the goat. Well to be truthful I do not eat lamb either. I was born and reared on a farm with mixed stock,now married to a farmer with stock and cereal crops. I adored all animals to look at in the fields and sheds so no i cannot eat them. Good luck with your calves—-80 calves–you must never get a break
We’re not huge meat eaters Helen, apart from my daughter who is such a carnivore! But this goat does look nice and I do like lamb. I didn’t want to know which of the goats I was eating though so I don’t have to think of its face while I’m cooking dinner. 🙂
I’m exhausted this evening! but part of that is due to it being a busy week and being at a kiddie’s party today (niece), home now, lit the fire, and once the calves are fed, I am not moving from the armchair by the fire! We had a very successful first service to AI with ten calves being born in 24 hours one day but there will be a lull now for 10 days or so.
I agree re the tariff to the grid, it is way below the UK which is what delayed us doing anything. We’ll see how this goes and may get a bigger one in a few years. We have a high site which is great for wind 🙂
Lorna apart from being outdoor with the animals do you have any time for other interests like baking cakes, homemade bread, jammaking sewing or knitting? It’s amazing how some people regard these interests as “rural” while they can be carried out in any setting .
I know, Helen, they do seem to be seen as ‘country pursuits’ but yes, I do crochet a bit and have started making some patchwork for a cushion cover, I tend to do baking in spurts (my 7 year old daughter loves baking) and amke brown bread frequently. I’m not so keen on the jam making but yes to everything else 🙂
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