I wish I were a hedgehog!

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As I get out of bed, look out of the window and see another dark, cold and wet morning, I feel like going back under the warm duvet and curl up for more sleep. But the hens are calling to be let out of their coop and my day on the smallholding must begin… there are chores to be done, log baskets to be filled, kindling to be fetched and woodburners to light for a start. A hundred and one other things too, or so it seems when my motivation and energy levels are as low and weak as the ...

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Nature's own fireworks

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Aren't the Autumn colours beautiful? Such a fiery riot of reds, yellows, russets and oranges.

Like quiet fireworks, they illuminate our woodland-rich landscape during the daytime, just as fireworks and bonfires illuminate the night skies at this time of year. The rolling hills of Mid-Wales are a real kaleidoscope of colour as the trees continue to hang on to their burnished and rusty leaves.

In our garden, the display of autumnal colours is just as dazzling with the copper beech, the rowan and the ornamental cherries being the stars of this blazing spectacle! Their rich ruby tones have been ...

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Colchicum Autumnale

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How can it be 1st October already??! Before time runs away from me even more and the moment passes, here is something that we did in September.

We have Colchicum Autumnale, also known as Autumn Crocus, Meadow Saffron or even Naked Ladies, in one of our fields and we continue the work of the previous owners in counting the flowers each Autumn and passing on the numbers to the county recorder for the Botanical Society for Great Britain and Ireland.

These pretty wild flowers are rare nowadays but ours survive and thrive because the field has not been ploughed for ...

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September is here and change is in the air

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Is anyone else feeling that Autumn has been in a bit of a hurry this year? The end of the Summer seems to have occurred rather abruptly with cooler temperatures and unsettled weather pushing their way through August with much haste and determination. I have so enjoyed the long, hot days of Summer, a “proper Summer” of eating breakfast, lunch and dinner out on the patio for weeks, with glorious sunshine to help us feel well from the increased amounts of vitamin D being absorbed through our skin, where our water butts ran dry a couple of times (even in ...

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Heady days of Summer

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Our little spot in the hills of Mid-Wales is alive and in full growth. The bird population is at its peak as the young have now fledged and some are coming to the feeders with the adults. The grasses in the fields have turned to seed and have now reached well above my knees! Our tiny flock of sheep cannot graze the grass fast enough at this time of year and our Shetland ewe lamb easily disappears from sight in there! To my delight, I have spotted a few wild orchids in the meadow. The honeysuckle in the lane is ...

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Mourning the loss of a pet

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One month ago today, very suddenly and unexpectedly, we had to say goodbye to our beloved Lola. She got hit by a car and sadly, she did not recover from the internal injuries she sustained. It feels a part of us has gone with her and we are grieving.

At the end of a very difficult day, our neighbour had called round to help us with a newborn lamb in trouble (but that is another story!) and both cats had been playing under his car. I suspect Lola took it a little further and climbed either on the wheel or ...

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The chicks are here!

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I am almost three weeks behind sharing this news on here! The fertile eggs I put under broody Betty hatched on 30 May, at least some of them, and we have been enjoying seeing chicks grow and learn with her.

Out of the six eggs, two hatched and we have two live chicks. We were down to five eggs anyway as we had broken one egg when we lifted Betty out of the coop once to encourage her to go for a poo, a bite to eat and a bit of drink. We were concerned she would lose condition sitting ...

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Our privacy policy

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Not the usual blog post about our life in the Welsh Hills... but a quick message to let all our subscribers know that we take data collection and storage seriously.

You have no doubt received hundreds of emails about General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) already and whilst we do not want to add to these (we have at least included a pretty picture of our Welsh Poppies so this message is not sent in vain!), as we run a blog with subscribers, we need to comply with the new regulation that has come into force this week. Our Privacy Policy ...

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A broody hen

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Last week, I noticed that our mother hen, Betty, was behaving oddly. She spent a lot of time preening herself and was scratching in places where there was nothing to scratch... she was also spending an increasing amount of time in the coop when she laid her egg each day. She appeared distracted, a bit giddy and "on edge". Then, one morning, I found her in the coop, all spread out on what looked like a nest and in a sort of trance! I knew then that she was broody. I read up all sorts of information about it and ...

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Goodbye, little Chalkie

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My last blog entry two weeks ago ended with the joys of new lambs bringing playful energy onto the smallholding. Sadly, this post is about the sudden death of one of them.

Twin brothers Charlie and Chalkie, as we settled to call them, were coming up to three weeks old, playing in the field happily and with bounds of energy. Both seemed to be growing well and loved to jump on the hay bale we had put in the field for them. They were becoming increasingly inquisitive, always together and learning to nibble on grass whilst spending more and more ...

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