12 August 2019

Family Time

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Family portraits with the dogs used to be a staple of this blog. There would be one every few months or so, but you would have to look back to August 2017 for the last family photo, and even then it was an unconventional one for me. It had been too long since I had taken a family photo, so out I went at sunset to get a photo of all the beautiful dogs I have now.

Before I had even began there was a possible setback - Jess doesn't like Fly or Sue, to the point of growling at them if they get too close. I always have to leave it up to Jess to decide if she feels up to coming on adventures with us. To my delight, this time she wanted to come with us.

And so here they are, my girls; Fly, Sue and Jess. Hard to believe Sue is the baby of the family - she's huge!



Sue, Fly and Mister Teddy.





Fly and Teddy, I am convinced, are related somehow. They don't look exactly alike, but their mannerisms are too close to be a coincidence.



Sue with silly ears in the back.



These three get along so well. Fly and Teddy have welcomed Susan into the family with open paws.



This one is too funny! Teddy in the back, looking at something that must be more interesting than me, Fly posing like an angel, and giant puppy Sue with a bonus tongue blep!





Aww!



As I mentioned, their personalities are so similar, they make a great team.



Jess hiding from the other dogs.





Teddy and a blurry Jess.



And here it is - my new family photo. I love these dogs so much.

10 August 2019

Gang Aft Agley

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What I had planned for this beautiful summer evening was going to be beautiful. Tilly, Esther and I would walk to a field of long grass and I'd take pictures of them as the sun set and the grass seeds glowed purple.

Alas, it was not to be. Esther and Tilly have become unlikely friends and they both trotted after me to the field in question. I let them off their halters once we had reached the grass. Esther stood, looking at the long grass, while Tilly took a few steps and nibbled on a few stems. Esther then came forward and nibbled some too, only to then turn tail and prance out of the field, up the lane, and into the yard, Tilly hot on her heels.

That long grass in the yard was much more to Esther's tastes.







After their refuelling, the pair of them took off! The skipped and jumped and ran and had a wonderful time. I was laughing just looking at them!























Of course, after all of that jumping and running around, it was time to refuel again.



Perhaps not the photoshoot I had planned, but still lots of fun!

8 August 2019

#Farm24

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Hosted by Farmers Guardian and sponsored by Morrisons, #Farm24 is a huge online event that encourages farmers to share the realities of farming over 24 hours. The first job is checking on the sheep and making sure they are alive and well and have enough water.

Every morning the quad comes out of the shed and it usually has a few dogs on it! This morning it was eight-year-old Teddy and ten-month-old Susan, the oldest and youngest members of the pack.



The first sheep I see every morning are my pets. Their usual field is beside the lane so I can see them from my kitchen and living room windows. That is, I can usually see them, but their field has really gotten away from them so they're hard to spot in the long grass. I'm hoping to take them off this field so we can get a cut of silage off of it.



The younger pet lambs got nuts until they were getting too big to fit into the feeder and they were all trying to squeeze in at once and someone was going to get hurt. They did lose some condition after I stopped giving them nuts but now that there's plenty of grass they're thriving without that extra food.



Bridget may be a big girl now but she still hides behind her mum.



After the pets are checked on, it's the main flock's turn. When we arrive at the gate, things are quiet.



I drive around and make sure that no one is stuck in a fence or anything else silly. If there's a sick ewe or lamb we'll try to treat it, rounding up the whole flock if necessary.





We had a later lambing this year, from mid March, so we have let the lambs stay with their mums for a bit longer. We're hoping to separate them in the next week or two.



Teddy has enough experience to stay on the quad, but Sue is still too young not to be secured on somehow. She'd soon jump off a moving quad if she saw something interesting!











Teddy loves to stare at the sheep.





Brownie, one of Cilla's twin ewe lambs.



And not too far away, there's Cilla herself.



I call this ewe the Eye Patch Ewe because she has a big spot next to her eye. She has a gorgeous Texel ewe lamb this year.



By the time we're leaving the field, the ewes and lambs are looking to come too.



After our escape, we went to check on the boys who are enjoying their summer break from the ewes. They weren't in a photogenic mood today but the landscape on the way to their field sure was.





I'm so grateful to have grown up and worked here.

Usually at this point I would be dashing off in a tractor to help with the silage, but as I have family visiting this afternoon, this is all the farming I'm getting up to today. Enjoy #Farm24.