Sunday, 26 August 2012

A busy week means a full barn!

David reckons that he's managed to lose a couple of stone in weight doing haymaking.  Who needs a gym membership?!  Hard work in very hot weather and loads of stress - that's the recipe for weight loss!

And the result of his efforts can be seen around the farm - a nice full barn and a few stray piles waiting to be loaded in:

Lovely lovely hay and straw.  Just a small amount of oat straw to bale and bring in and that's it!  Hopefully we should have enough this year to get us through to next harvest.  It's a great relief, I can tell you.

As I sit at my laptop writing this blog, I can smell a rather unsavoury odour.  Smells suspiciously like a small dead rodent ... courtesy of Marmite cat.  I haven't been able to pin the smell down yet to anything particular but years of experience tell me that there is something small, furry and deceased lurking in this room. 

Anyway - it was a hard and very busy week but as it came to an end we were thrilled to welcome our friends Andrew and Jennifer and their boys Robert and Scott for a flying visit.  On their way back home to Huddersfield from a brief holiday in France, they arrived on Friday night and stayed over until this morning.  Andrew and the boys are always keen to help with the goats and it was good to have some help in the parlour after a week of coping single-handed with all those stroppy milkers!

Jennifer dragged herself out of bed early on Saturday and came to Wimbledon market to give me a hand.  It was great to have an extra pair of hands and she seemed to enjoy her day out - here she is taking a well-earned rest!

The girls had the much better deal on Saturday as David had a rather more mucky job lined up for the boys who stayed behind  .... After some brief tuition, the three of them spent a happy day muckspreading!  Andrew was in charge of loading with the JCB:

Whilst Robert did the tractor driving and spreading:

Scott lent a hand with both and all of them managed to get absolutely plastered in goat poo.  Fortunately, they had a wash before we all retired to the old grain store for a barbeque as the rain moved in.  Those large plastic-wrapped stacks are huge bales of lucerne for the goaties.

And what of the goaties this week?  Well, it was just them and me for most of the evening milking sessions and although they were reasonably well behaved, there was the usual naughtiness.  Don't be fooled by all those innocent little faces as they relax in the sunshine waiting to come in for milking:

As soon as I start rattling about in the parlour, they are up on their feet and waiting at the gate, ready and eager to come in:

And once the gate is open, there's a mad dash to be first in.  Let battle commence!

Once in the parlour, they are fairly well behaved though:
It's only when they have finished their food that the bad behaviour starts!

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