Counting eggs (and sheep)

The Crofter has nearly been home a week and lo and behold, nothing in the ‘exciting/terrifying/‘no-one-will-believe-me’ category of crofting life has occurred. I don’t count the sudden pick up of the chicken’s egg laying as even remotely in the category. The Crofter has been manning the place with the Mini Crofter while I have been back at work this week. And judging how it’s going I’m wondering if I have an uncanny knack of causing whirlwinds (not personally but some people seem to have smoother rides than others, and those of us in nursing all know that if you’re on … Continue reading Counting eggs (and sheep)

Mountains and mole hills

We have a mole. Not a mole that steals your secrets and sells them on to foreign intelligence services (I can’t imagine MI5 needing to send a spook to our croft but you never know). But the true, furry types that make mole hills. And no, I’m not making mountains out of mole hills, I was out trying to flatten mole hills so we don’t end up with bumpy ground later on. Yes, the snow has mostly gone, the landscape looking very different to most of January. Very much greener, but now with mole hills, everywhere! The sun shines, well, on … Continue reading Mountains and mole hills

Ring feeder two-step

Working on a croft means your ‘office view’ is not stationary, nor boring. One regular view is from the tractor although the ability to see out was slightly hampered at the weekend. A friend was up visiting so I decided to make use of her (no, I did not send her out to do 15 hours of manual slog work, I’m not that cruel to guests). I took the opportunity and decided to give the cows their bales a day or two early. Much thought was pondered over this due to the snow level and the forecast of a thaw … Continue reading Ring feeder two-step

Barmy BBQs to battling blizzards.

I may never climb Mount Everest, scale across Antartica, or win a rally race but there are some days that you feel like you have done all of the above, in a short space of time and over little ground. But there is no medal, no sponsor donated equipment, no champagne bottle to celebrate. You just get to feel accomplished while on your own, with a wee ‘un in tow. And think, ‘Ooo, I get to do the same tomorrow’ or ‘I may need Noah’s Ark tomorrow if this thaw really does take place and then it’ll feel like I’ve … Continue reading Barmy BBQs to battling blizzards.

Give it some welly

My wish list is expanding. Snow shoes (for getting to the chickens and up to the ring feeder), nonleaking boots, nonleaking wellies, non leaking waterproofs, a snow blower, a snow plough for the buggy, skies for the buggy. After yesterday, snow blower is at the top. And the frustration of a fitness tracker also peaked. Shovelling snow is pretty hard going. Keeping paths cleared out of the house and to various sheds, gates, etc is very useful. It may not have to be done but if not, you (or really I) suffer the consequence of compacted snow that forms an … Continue reading Give it some welly

Tough as old boots.

A woman may never have enough shoes but having one pair of nonleaking boots would be good. And nonleaking wellies, and nonleaking waterproof trousers while I’m at it. Heels may be useful for reaching the top door of the byre but think I’d go for a tough-as-old-boot style, the type I can wear feeding the chickens, trudging up a hill, at the mart, with crampons and into town, all the while not looking like I’ve just arrived from the outback. My current boots have served me well, they have hung on a lot longer than their first prognosis but their … Continue reading Tough as old boots.

Blowin’ in the wind.

First, the weather turned and although the BBC was telling me it was ‘light’ wind, I disagreed and picking up bits of wood blown over fences would suggest otherwise. Then, the forecast stated gale force. I was suspicious. Would it really be more than the previous two days or were they thinking of just making it up for the low numbers? Everything by now was firmly tucked up so little required in preparation. On the day itself I will admit it was a tad bit blustery to say the least. The dilemma: Mini Crofter’s naps are outside and if you … Continue reading Blowin’ in the wind.

These boots were made for walking.

My boots, my relegated walking boots, may have been made for walking but they, and little else in footwear, do not do very well on ice. Frolicking in fields of ice has been fine underfoot but the unpaved road from our croft to the council road has more been up to the standard for an olympic bobsled team to practice on. It’s been up to this standard for all of this year (thankfully it is still January and let’s hope this doesn’t still stand for much more of the year). Wellies have been the footwear of choice on ice but … Continue reading These boots were made for walking.

One day I’ll fly away…

As the darkness slowly lifted I was slightly suspicious of something moving near to the byre. All was not well but as to what it was I didn’t know. As the sunrise continued I was confronted with one bewildered looking goose in the bottom field. Two problems: he should have been in the top field and he should have had his partner in crime with him. Partner in crime was nowhere to be seen. To get to the bottom field he would have had to fly and as they are domestic geese, they don’t. Why fly when you can waddle … Continue reading One day I’ll fly away…

Danny boy

Well Danny boy, your pipes may be calling you but mine are freezing! And not just any time and place freezing, occurring in the byre and while the Crofter is away. So, while giving the Mini Crofter a lesson in physics, our lab experiment involves trips down to the byre with a kettle. No, I do not serve our cows cups of tea while they have no running water. I merely lean into the byre via the locking barrier to empty said kettle over the metal join that is the last exposed point before water decants into the trough. And hence, … Continue reading Danny boy