You'll have read in earlier posts that we are currently entertaining the Silverwoods on a week's 'holiday'. Just Mrs S and the children this time, as Mr S has to work. They arrived Sunday afternoon and are here for this week till Mr S comes back this weekend to collect them all up again. Not much time, then, to post on here; the usual run of farm based entertainments and front lawn games.
We have been getting to know animals and poultry, training sheep to eat from buckets and to come up to the gate for food at meal times, helping Broody Betty to scratch up worms for the ducklings and giving the baby bunnies a good amount of handling practise. We have played tennis, badminton, soccer and GAA football. We have lost shuttlecocks and balls all over the shop. We have built wooden toy sailing boats and bird houses. The sailing boat is exhausted from many voyages on the pond.
The highlight of the week (for me at least) so far was a session we arranged with Charlotte the mini-horse owner to come down and let the kids have a go at driving the gig pulled by Romeo or just riding in it and, for the two smaller ones, a bit of bare back riding on Bob. The older children and adults also went for a spin down the lane, dicing with the local traffic.
The horses were due to arrive at midday, by which time it was raining quite hard, so we retreated indoors for tea and to let it stop. The rain obliged by about ten past and we got a lovely hour or so of sunshine to do our stuff and to get some lovely pictures.
The kids, Mrs S and I all took a spin round the front lawn on the gig being shown the reins and the very soft-mouth, gentle action steering of Romeo. Charlotte, of course, drove him in some of the shows where they won all the awards, so she can make him reverse, turn tight round, go slow and fast, but we were just beginners so we were on the very basics.
Mrs S and I both had a go and took pictures of each other but the camera chose that 5 minutes of the day to mis-fire, so we have dozens of lovely pics of the children but none of the grown ups.
We had a whale of a time and everybody loved it. We all thank Charlotte so, so much for doing this for us. She was quite enjoying being able to do some actual training on 'sensible' horses. Round here, she tells me, all the riding schools are for specialist work like show jumping using highly strung, competitive thoroughbred horses which are 'away with the fairies' and not really for inexperienced children. Hence, she says, none of the children are ever into horses.
For its first six years, this blog was "written" by my Westie Pup, Deefer but now on reaching its 30,000th page-view she has passed the keyboard to me. It remains a light hearted look at the lives of our family, human and animals first in Faversham, Kent, then through our recent 'up sticks' move to County Roscommon, Republic of Ireland where we have gutted and rebuilt a farmhouse and are now starting a small holding.