Saturday 24 March 2018

Meet the Grandchildren

That play poster. Rehearsals are coming along
really well. It promises to be a superb production.
If you are looking to go, buy your tickets soon .
Some of the days are selling out already.
Bit of a mixed bag today and the first post on the borrowed laptop where I'm not 100% yet on the very sensitive keyboard or some of the options. If this post looks a bit ropy compared to normal (or better!) then bear with me and I'll wear it in like a new pair of boots. Elizabeth will probably never want to use it again and already does a good line in laughing at my typing rhythm. I use only first fingers and the occasional thumb on the space bar. I'm reasonably quick but will obviously never get as fast as a proper, 8 fingers and 2 thumbs typist.

Last knockings of the Christmas leg of ham. It has been splendid
throughout and the skeleton is now being turned into the best
stock for pea+ham soup EVER. 
To slow me down even more, the 'caterers' have just passed me a superb plate of our own 'Parma' (style) ham and wee dice of galia melon. This has been a superb product throughout and only now, in mid March, am I nibbling the last few scraps off the bones with my fancy, long-bladed, special Spanish ham carving knife.

The tiny cradle that takes the '2032' lithium battery.
But back to the sudden need for a laptop. The PC has finally died and will no longer load Google Chrome. We had read on the Internet that these "imminent death" warnings are just an artefact of the tiny, euro-coin sized lithium battery in your Mother-Board going flat. Like us, you may not have known that such a battery existed but may I assure you it does.

Flowering currant just starting.
Do not rush to stock up on these 70 cent batteries, however, because I fitted my new one this morning and I can further assure you it made not 70 cents worth of difference. Ah well. Our 2nd 'fix-it' option is that Mrs C buys a tablet and I inherit the laptop. That's the next move.

Some early uncrossed buns. They were lovely!
A minor rant, then. We wish that the companies that made medicine for sheeps, would cater better for we small holders who only have half a dozen sheep to treat,

The turkeys and Guineas were starting to damage the Spring
bulbs. We rescued the pots to a strawberry cage.
I needed to buy a fluke-drench for my 4 and the smallest quantity I could buy was a 1 litre bottle. The dose per ewe is 5.25 millilitres, so I have 190 doses here and the product only has a 2 year shelf life. We smallholders end up trying to buy co-operatively between a number of us, or risk throwing 9/10 of the stuff away. The bottle was €29.99 which is not a killer, but I'd love to have been able to buy the  25 ml bottle at a tenner. How about it big-pharma?

'Shawn' the dog? Deefer, post clip
The dogs got their long overdue clip. They were all three very shaggy and Deefer, especially, tangles her hair into dirty 'rat's tails', so I chose the first warm day and had at them. Deefer got done slowly, using my 3mm clipper head sliding slowly under all that tangle. All three came out looking like new lambs. Their hair was as short as a Jack Russell and they were sparkling white. Also soft and felty to the touch rather than 'ropy' and reminiscent if dreadlocks.

Daisy 'Dook' looking as cool as....
On the Thursday night, I went along with Elizabeth to watch the latest rehearsal of the village play, "Anyone Can Rob a Bank" and to take some pics for the website. No spoilers obviously, but it is looking very promising for a real fun evening. The Lisacul Players have put together a superb production with some superb farce, belly-laugh action in it. It's going to be GREAT. Tickets are 4th, 6th and 7th of April and are selling fast, so if you are thinking of going, don't leave it too late.

Out walking the dogs, I have got talking o some 'new' people - well new friends to us, anyway. Hi Joe and Olivia. They were very interested in our pigs and we are very interested in the fact that they have Dexter cattle, so some reciprocal visits are in order. Today they dropped in on us and came to admire Bo, Luke and Daisy. They proclaimed them very clean and healthy looking, plus enormous for their 10 week age. I gave them the number for our breeder and they are off hunting down some Oxford Sandy and Blacks very soon.

The entire flock muster on the front lawn.
Meanwhile, the newest lambs came up to the 2-week age this weekend and it is more than warm enough for them to go outside 24/7. So Mum 'Rosie', her suckled ram lamb and our bottle fed ewe-lamb 'Bábóg' all got shunted out onto the front lawn this morning where they were joined by the rest of the gang (being Lily with Tigger, Polly with her twins and slowcoach Myfanwy who does not know whether to be pregnant or not yet). It occurred to me that we therefore have 3 generations out there - Lily is Mum to our newest breeding ewe, Rosie and she has twins. Meet the Grandchildren, Lily?

Did you sneak in there trying to nick the bait, hen?
Not at all - what made you think that?
Sadly, I am going to finish on a down beat. At some point while we were either showing the visitors round or moving sheep, another female duck vanished, presumably snatched by Brer Fox. We saw nothing of him this time, nor heard anything and neither did the Giineas, unusually. Ah well. These things happen, but why did it have to be a female. We only have one duck left laying eggs now. The fox trap has caught only chickens!

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