Friday 23 January 2015




Still inside the house at night in her basket by the woodburner but outside during the day ( if it is warm enough)  and finally feeding herself from the ground. Also enjoying a cwtch with me as many times a day as she can manage :)

Thursday 22 January 2015


Up early today and got cracking with chores, then went into Hereford  with a very long shopping list. I need a new wind and waterproof coat as my old one leaks and is now hanging off me. So I had a look around the various outdoor clothing shops and found one I liked, which was in the Sales with a substantial discount on it, so I bought it. 


 I had a wander around the Cathedral for a bit, I love Hereford Cathedral


And I also had a wander around the streets surrounding the Cathedral - this is the High Street looking away from the Cathedral precinct.

I then got on with more shopping, all things I needed but I did look at a few "wants" while I was there :)

Home, to do a bit outside while there was still light and then do the normal evening chores. Bed early as I was very tired after my long day out :)

Wednesday 21 January 2015


Now the porch is nice and clean and has dried out I can get started filling it up with seeds and plants and stuff :)


I am going to re pot all these geraniums as they are looking a bit sad. A bit of worm compost in the bottom of the pot and they will feel much better :)


It is too cold today to pot things up in the polytunnel so I have moved into the porch to work. Here is a christmas basket with two cyclamen waiting to be potted  into seperate pots and given some tlc.

I also washed more gravel trays and seed modules in the futility* room - normally I do this work in the polytunnel but it is just too cold out there for me to work without my fingers seizing up. So I have come inside to do this job. Thank goodness we have a futility* room with a sink in!

It feels so good to be doing some gardening again :) 

(It's a utility room, really. But I prefer to call it this as trying to keep it tidy is a futile task ;)  )

For my last birthday, I had at least one card with a teapot on the front and even a present wrapped up in teacup wrapping paper. I didn’t even know you could get teacup wrapping paper (it was rather wonderful)! … Continue reading →

Tuesday 20 January 2015


I don't often use bleach ( not very environmentally friendly and not good in our septic tank in large quantities) so when I do have to make up a solution of it I tend to use it for as many different jobs as I possibly can.

Today I had some fabric for a craft project which needed lightening, so I made up a washing up bowl full of bleach and water. I left the cloths to soak for a bit until they were the shade I wanted.


I then used the bleach water to soak some tea discoloured tea towels, wash cloths and flannels before putting them in the wash.



As you may recall I use our double glazed porch as a greenhouse to start off plants for the polytunnel. I start sowing seeds on 2nd Feb ( Imbolc, or Candlemas if you are Christian) so I need to make sure the porch is nice and clean before I start.  This is my seed sowing area for early stuff and I need it to be absolutely spotless with no lingering mould spores, before I set up the heated propagators in there and get cracking on 2015 tomato, pepper, cucumber etc seed sowings.

So I then used the bowl of bleachy water to wash down the windows, window sills and walls in the porch. I then wiped the walls and windows clean with a cloth and clean water (important, otherwise the bleach dries and turns to salt on the walls, which will then provide a focus for damp to be absorbed - not good for walls!)



Compostman is going to re paint the removable bench, which lives in the porch during seed propagating season, so it is nice and clean looking and has a sealed surface. That way it won't get spoiled by water drips.

The porch looks a bit of a mess at the moment but at least it is nice and clean now :)


I then used the bleachy water to give all four of the heated propagators (bases and lids) a good clean and I also gave outer ceramic pots (used to hold house plants) and the old plant labels a good soak to make sure they, too are clean before use.

After that the water no longer smelt of bleach :) So I used it to clean the downstairs toilet then flushed it away

I also scrubbed a number of water holding trays clean with hot soapy water and lavender essential oil. That helped to hide the smell of bleach in the house a little!

Tomorrow I will have to put the porch back together again but for now it is drying and I feel pleased :)

“Life is the flower for which love is the honey.“* *Victor Hugo Well, for creatures so small, they still love our attention even when they are huddled together in the hive throughout the coldest months. Usually, a honey bee colony is at its smallest this time of year, with enough bees to care for the […]

Monday 19 January 2015


Today is cold and damp and miserable so I decided to do some housework and some mending, before going out shopping.


Lilac is still a House Hen. She is hanging on, no better, no worse. I just wish she would eat a bit more. She wisely stays close to the woodburner  for warmth :)


I did some tidying up and then sorted out some bits and bobs of stuff I had saved.


These are hanging loops from clothes which I use as ribbons on home made decorations.


This waistcoat is lovely but I don't like the metal buttons. So I changed them.

After lunch I went to Ledbury and bought lovely vegetables from Handley Organics, as well as various other items from local shops. I came home and then had a 45 minute wait on the 'phone to the Tax office but I did get to talk to someone eventually which cleared up a problem.

Anyone else doing their tax return now, or are you all super organised and have done it already?

Sunday 18 January 2015





I have given up alcohol for January as part of Dry January 2015. I have been doing this since Jan 1st 2015  and I am fundraising for Cancer Research UK :)So far I have found not drinking is making me feel bright eyed and bushy tailed in the morning, I sleep better, my skin looks lovely and I have lost some weight as an added bonus. :) I am also still following The Harcombe Diet and as Phase 1 of THD excludes alcohol it has been even easier to stick to my eating plan without the temptation to drink alcohol :)

I am getting through a lot of fizzy water in the evening though, and herb and fruit teas at night :)

If you fancy sponsoring me, why not donate £5 (the price of a bottle of wine or a couple of pints) or more if you are feeling very very generous?  I intend to donate at the end of the month a substantial proportion of the money I would have spent on drink :) I suspect that will be quite a lot of money :)

You can send your donation  by texting SBDJ99 £5 to 70070. And don’t forget to claim Gift Aid to increase your donation by 25%, at no extra cost to you. Thank you!

Sarah-Blenkinsop-dryathlete2015Thank you !

  … Lulworth Cove… ‘Let’s have breakfast on the beach…’ was the cry last Sunday. So we packed up our toast and marmite, grabbed a flask of tea and off we went… all joyful and excited by the thought of a … Continue reading →

Saturday 17 January 2015

Up and busy around the house and garden this morning - very cold but lovely and sunny :) I put Lilac hen outside with the other girls to enjoy the sunshine and she pottered around with them in the garden. She is very thin  and very slow, though ...

The other big girls are laying well so I collected 4 eggs from them and one of the Serama pullets is also laying an egg nearly every day so thank you Mandy ( I think)

Later, after lunch I brought Lilac inside the house and then Compostgirl and I went to Hereford for a shopping trip, collecting a friend of Compostgirl's on the way. They went off and had a look around and I did clothes returning and then book buying, using up loads of money saved up on my loyalty card. Two "free" Robin Hobb books to get stuck into later this week AFTER I have done my tax return I think! We met up for hot chocolate and cake ( them) and coffee for me.

Home (via friend's house to drop her off) to a beef casserole cooked by Compostman while we were out and a sit by the fire to watch TV. Compostgirl and I enjoyed "The Voice" and then we all watched a "Father Brown" we had recorded earlier in the week.

I need to get on with crochet and sewing as I have realised that in another few weeks it will be time to start the seed sowing/chitting/plant propagation etc etc and then I will not have time! Eeek where has the winter gone? 

Friday 16 January 2015

Ha! Thought that would get your attention! Copying John Grey's tactics with lurid titles :)

The hen in question is of course Lilac. Her crop seems back to normal and she is in general good health BUT she won't eat much while inside so, although she is alarmingly thin I put her outside in the pale sunshine to wander around the garden with the other hens. She perked up as soon as she saw them and, after a bit of pecking order antics from Sweetiepie to remind Lilac that she is STILL bottom hen, they all ambled off to sunbathe and dig up the veg patch.

Lilac had a mucky bum because she is inside in a cat carrier and she can't perch so is sitting in her (copious) night time droppings, which is why her bottom fluff is getting caked with poo. When it dries it cannot be very comfortable so at the end of the day I gathered her up and washed her poo clogged feathers. I then cut off the offending feathers. Hopefully this will make Lilac more comfortable until she is strong enough to perch in the hen house at night.

In other news I have definitely found I am also intolerant to milk and cheese, as well as wheat. So that will make life a bit more interesting on the food front! On the plus side my weight loss is even more dramatic now I have cut out milk and cheese! I seem ok with butter and natural live yogurt though - apparently that is not unusual.

Thursday 15 January 2015

Another one found lurking in the "Scheduled" box, but not published!

So, after Compostgirl spent Christmas afternoon absorbed in a small jigsaw, Compostman and I spent a lot of Boxing Day absorbed in a larger one!


 Fiendishly hard. Really really really hard.


 But SO satisfying when we slotted the final piece in to place :)

Wednesday 14 January 2015

Realised this never got posted so in my illness inflicted absence have a belated post!

Tee shirts from Celestine and the Hare for all the family. We intend to Live Norty in 2015!


Compostgirl doing a Jackie Morris jigsaw puzzle



Compostwoman, Compostgirl and Compostman wearing their motto for 2015 (with weaselly and other creature interruptions)

Inspecting the new member of the felted gang.

Compostman's new friend Hector Weasel has found the Tunnock teacakes. Compostgirl's Harriet Bear looks on with a worried frown. Oh dear. Oh deary dear.


Hector the Weaselly Weasel shows what he thinks we all ought to do :) I think he has a good point!

Happy Christmas :)

… some incredible tree-fruits for you to enjoy … An almost wordless Wednesday… just to say that things have been a little bit hectic here on the Finca over the last few days.  I have a lovely post in mind (which … Continue reading →

Tuesday 13 January 2015

Feel dreadful. Been in pj's all day. Looked after Lilac House chicken ( who is much improved and actually ate today :) ) did two loads of washing and then sat in bed and sorted out paperwork, tax return stuff etc. Not really with it though.

Recording part two of the diet Horizon to watch as we found it intetresting - although I really wanted to take the people and offer them copies of Zoe Harcombe's THD book - I *know* it would work for them!

Monday 12 January 2015


Have some kind of virus thingy and have felt poorly since yesterday with dreadful headache and body aches and shivers. Have looked after Lilac Hen but Compostman did the other chickens for me and I have spent most of the day huddled under blankets in front of the woodburner. I don't seem able to get warm at all :(

Compostgirl made a chicken curry from scratch at school today so she and Compostman ate that for dinner while I had some scrambled eggs and a bit of bacon. I did not fancy anything else today except hot tea and water.

Early night for me, after we watch Horizon and then Broadchurch. If I can stay awake long enough!

Lilac Hen is drinking and looks bright but seems not to want to eat the food I give her. Hopefully tomorrow will be a better day for both of us!

“If we don’t change, we don’t grow. If we don’t grow, we aren’t really living.” Here at Hen Corner, we believe that living life to the full is a gift and a privilege, and over recent weeks, we’ve embraced some changes that will hopefully facilitate growth in our projects and see many other people join […]

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The story I’m about to tell may make you think differently about me. It started this past spring. To fill out my coop I ordered six chicks from My Pet Chicken—two Appenzeller Spitzhaubens and four Polish chicks. If you’ve never ordered chicks before, you may be surprised to learn that you can order a wide […]

The post The Story of Little Man or Don’t Push Robin Too Far appeared first on Bumblebee Blog.

Sunday 11 January 2015

Lilac Hen is still inside and on water only - I massaged her crop today and only a very small amount of water came out, far less than she has drunk in the last 18 hours so I am hoping she has absorbed some of the water and is recovering. She is looking brighter, if a little weak and had a wander round the house today to see what I was up to.



Hopefully I can get her to eat some live yogurt and mealworms today.

  … The view from the top of Okeford Hill … This photo opportunity happened completely by accident. It was the dreariest of days and the clouds hung thickly, looking as if they weren’t going to shift even a tiny bit. … Continue reading →

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