Wednesday, 24 January 2007

Daily chores.

It's snowing quite hard here at the moment which reminds me of some of the inconveniences of being a Sheep farmer. Every day there are a certain number of jobs that have to be done, and thats every day, rain snow or shine , 7 days a week, 52 weeks of the year.

In the Winter I get up at 8am, there's no point in getting up any earlier because it's dark outside until after 8.30. The first thing I do is put the kettle on as I don't function to well before my first cup of tea. The second job is to light the kitchen fire, we have an open log fire which we use all Winter [I bring the kindling in the night before so it's ready]. Then I check the wood burner that runs our central heating, if it's stayed in then I put in some more logs and turn it up, if it's gone out then I relight it. Next job is to take the OH a cup of tea in bed [alright for some I hear you say] then I take the dogs for their morning walk.

Next job is to feed the horses about half a bale of hay between them. Then let the chickens out and check for eggs. Finally feed the three cats, they don't live in the house but in one of the outbuildings and get fed there.

Then it's back indoors for another cup of tea provided by the OH this time. When we were lambing the next job would be feeding the ewes this is a two man/woman job. The photo shows what it was like at this time last year. And if it keeps snowing today then we will have to put hay out for the ewes as they cannot get to the grass. The rest of the day always includes bringing in logs to keep the fire and woodburner going [about two wheelbarrow loads when it's cold!!] and at the end of the day feed the horses again, put the chickens in their house,feed the ewes again, feed the cats, feed the dogs. In between these two times we have a wide variety of jobs to do which I will talk about in later posts. Two days are very seldom the same and although we try and plan what jobs we intend to do unexpected events often take over, again more of this later.
We have reduced considerably the number and variety of animals that we are keeping so life is a lot easier now than last year, which is why I am able to find the time for this blog and the novel I am writing. But looking after 65 ewes still takes time, they still need a commitment on our part, their well-being is important to us.
In our 15 years here we have had sheep, pigs, heifers, goats, horses, turkeys, ducks, chickens, rabbits and quite often all at once!!!!!!!! So I am really looking forward to sharing some of my experiences, the good and the sad, the triumphs and the disasters, warts and all.


Caroline said...

I was becoming worried that OH was going to stay in bed whilst you did all of the work!
How long do you work for each day? Is it an all day job?


gentlemanoracle said...

Came acroos from carolines blog hope you don't mind. Lovely post i felt very rustic. As if i were really there and i don't mind admitting feeling a little romantically jealous.