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Archive for October, 2011

Tuesday 18 October 2011

Next week Gordon and I are going to a wedding so yesterday I went with my sister to The Mall at Cribbs Causeway to look for a short black cardigan and black shoes.  We had a great time looking around but even with the huge selection of shops there we were unable to find anything suitable, or if we found it they didn’t have my size.  Before we got back on the motorway we decided to have a look around the very large Asda store there and lo-and-behold I was able to find exactly what I wanted.  How typical is that?

I logged on to look at my blog today as I do and imagine my surprise when I saw it was apparently visited 298 times yesterday!  My average number of visitors per day is around fifteen, which suits me fine.  Some of the search terms were once again a bit odd but the ‘tractor graveyard’ seems to get several searches a day.  Whoever searched for ‘big udders’ then all I can say to you is “Yuck – go do something far more interesting” and one of the searches was ‘what do elderberries smell like?” which I’m sure I’ve never mentioned although all those words may appear somewhere.

I shall be busy for the next few days preparing for our trip away so may not have a chance to update, but try not to miss me :D.  The journey involves a plane ride so there will be photos on my return.  In the meantime I shall let the blog counter click over to 30,000 visitors and to everyone who comes here looking for nice things instead of pervy things, please come back again soon.

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Today I Saw This

Tuesday 11 October 2011

All day yesterday and a little bit of this morning (before breakfast, no less) was spent cutting the maize.  We kept going yesterday until it was too dark to see anything including the hitches on the trailers.  I’d already set my mind on finishing today so hadn’t planned anything else.  Consequently I was bored and decided to go for a walk.  The added bonus was that it wasn’t raining of course.  The camera came too.

I saw lots of these:

Speckled Wood Butterfly

although this one looks a bit worse for wear.

along here:

I picked two pounds of these to make more sloe and apple jelly only this time I’m going to ‘big it up’ as the girls would say.  I’ve decided to label it ‘Wild Sloe and Cox’s Orange Pippin Jelly’.  It sounds so much more designer, don’t you think?

Sloes

I saw these two, hiding under the leaves:

and noticed that these have lost their red shine, slowly turning black

Haws on the hawthorn bush

I walked alongside the maize field.  These were among the missed – probably in the dark yesterday!

All that's left

I was watched by these ladies:

and noticed that this snail seems to have moved on.

Moved Out?

I put these here a few days ago when I was pulling out the dead plants.  I haven’t decided what to do with them yet, but I don’t have any more room to store chutney!

I also picked a pound of these and made a blackberry and apple crumble – from scratch can you believe?

A confused blackberry bush

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Wednesday 5 October 2011

Thanks to the unseasonal sunny weather we grabbed the opportunity to make a start with the harvest.  Gordon and Dan were doing well with the corn until the combine harvester gave up the ghost in a cloud of smoke at the end of last week, successfully putting itself out of action for the next couple of weeks.  Luckily they were two fields down with one to go and since there was no hope of saving the corn in the third field it was cut with the intention of baling the straw with the corn still attached.  The weather forecast was promising, offering warm, sunny weather until today, but unfortunately they were out in their calculations and it started to rain on Monday evening.  The straw is still on the ground and we’re hoping now it’ll stop raining long enough to dry it adequately so it can be baled.  If not, then we’ll have lost it, but as it is Gordon thinks we have enough corn already to see us through the winter.

On Sunday we discussed the merits of cutting the maize – slightly earlier than it needed to be, but at least with the week’s worth of sun on the ground it was dry enough to drive over.  Once the sun had burned off the dew on Monday morning we made a start and were doing pretty well with just the occasional hiccup (so what’s new?) thanks to the huge amount of weed that was growing underneath the maize.  Every-so-often the header would choke up with the stuff which seemed tougher than rope and twice the chains were pushed off by the build-up, but we carried on until too dark to see anything.  Despite the rain overnight we thought we’d make a start on Tuesday morning to see how we got on, but having driven out to the field and looked at the puddles all over it we turned round to come back again.  There’s really no point in even attempting to cut maize when our ground’s that wet.

Today we went to the Dairy Event at Shepton Mallet, an annual show held just for farmers.  It rained there too, but at least we were able to duck in and out of exhibitors’ stands to stay dry.

It now seems like October is back on track with the weather returning to proper autumnal stuff.  It’s a shame really because we were just getting used to being warm again.  I’ve treated myself to the jelly strainer I was hankering after and have made sloe and apple, rosehip and apple and blackberry and apple jelly.  Amazingly they all set, taste delicious and are beautiful colours.  It almost seems a shame to eat them as they’re so pretty.  It was very relaxing to wander around the fields gathering the wild harvest although I was able to pick 6lbs of blackberries and thought I might die of the heat!  I didn’t realise it was quite that warm when I went out so didn’t even think to take a bottle of water with me.

Last Friday Terri and I went to Fyne Court for a woodland walkabout and took some glorious photos.  I love walking in the woods, especially at this time of year, and especially when you can do it in a t-shirt!

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