Thursday, 29 May 2014

The Chicks Have Flown

The little Chaffinch Chicks gave me a small window of opportunity for a photo shoot before they flew the nest.

I cannot be sure when they left but the nest is definitely empty.

I'm sorry that we didn't get to see them fledge but I suppose it was never going to happen while we were pottering about.

We are still seeing Mum and Dad about so I'm guessing they have taken their young to a more densely leafed tree to continue their upbringing.

I read that Chaffinches will nest twice in a year and we wondered if they would return to this nest. However, either Mum or another Chaffinch has been visiting the nest and appears to be dismantling it? Or maybe Mum left something behind that she needed?

Meanwhile, the House Martins have been casing our joint over the past few days. They nested under our eaves last year but they don't seem to have made up their mind yet. We have new fascias and soffits so maybe that is putting them off?

Saturday, 24 May 2014

Messing With/Up My Blog

Well, I did some fiddling last night and it appears that all my current photo's have disappeared!

I hope to sort it our soon - more fiddling is required!

However, contrary to the rain forecast for today, it is dry and sunny, if a bit blustery so garden chores must come first.

Thursday, 22 May 2014

A Room With A View

One of the reasons we wanted to move was that at our previous house all we could see around us was other houses.

My family had not sold off their long garden but the properties either side had and, like most of the land in what was once a small farming village, had been built on.

All of the rooms in our new house have a view; the bungalow sits in the middle of the garden.

Our most imposing view is of Murton Pike which stands at 1,949ft.

I have to confess that we have not climbed it yet but we plan to soon. I want a photograph from the top looking back at our house.

We do see hang gliders launching themselves off it with varying degrees of success.

I had a plan to take this photograph on the first day of each month with the idea of creating a calendar. The plan fell by the wayside and, really why do we need a calendar showing something that we can see every day?

About Us

Most smallholding journeys begin with growing your own food, progress to keeping a few chickens for eggs and then take the big leap into keeping larger livestock.

Our story is no different and we began this blog in 2010 when we took that big leap and decided to raise Rare Breed pigs for our own consumption.

The Pig and Chicken pages tell most of our story.
My previous post explains that I have deleted all the posts made since 2010.

In 2013 we realised a dream and moved from Yorkshire to Cumbria.
From a three bedroom house that had been in my family since my Great Grandparents time, to a "tiny house by a tiny stream" or, more specifically, a three bedroom bungalow.

The land we have now is slightly more than we had before and the plan is to continue where we left off.

To this end, our chickens moved with us and we already have this years pigs housed safely in their pen.
The garden is taking longer to transform than we anticipated, so we have a limited amount of produce in the ground. Still, compared to last year when we grew nothing, we are doing well!

Having deleted our history, some things will need to be re-introduced. Apologies to old friends and followers but I am hoping some new friends will come along.

The family at present consists:
Me and Steve
Jilly - our old Black Labrador
Amber & Molly - two young Labradors coming up to their 2nd birthday
Six Chickens
Two British Saddlebacks.

I have stories about them all and photo's will be in abundance.

Monday, 19 May 2014

All Change

After much consideration about doing some Spring Cleaning I have decided to remove all our old posts.

I have also removed any awards that came from those posts.

The story is not over but I felt that the Blog as it stood had served its purpose and was getting stale.

I have left the pages for now as they chart our past history to a large extent.

I have not edited my blog list but I shall be looking at it over the days (probably weeks) to come, hopefully renewing contacts and getting back into the stride of things.

Thank you to everyone who came along on our journey as it was recorded here. I hope our new adventures in Cumbria will interest you too.

Tuesday, 6 May 2014


One morning in mid-April we watched a chaffinch nest being built in a tree close to our house. We thought that Mr & Mrs Chaffinch were building but it turns out that only the female builds the nest.

It's very impressive.
If you didn't know it was there you wouldn't see it.
You may need to click on the photograph to confirm that it is actually there, just in the right hand fork of the tree.

We have kept peeking at the nest and just yesterday noticed that Mrs.
Chaffinch is indeed sitting on the nest. Again, you may need to click on the photo to see her peeking out.
Beneath her, hopefully, will be a clutch of 4 or 5 eggs which will take 11 - 13 days to incubate.

I hesitated in posting this news because the last time I shared a nest things didn't turn out very well and the nest was abandoned.
Fingers crossed for Mr & Mrs Chaffinch.