Saturday, 21 November 2015

Loaves and logs

The 25-tonne log pile
The time has come at last to tackle the mountain of logs from the Forestry Commission. For this job, Christmas came early and Jim's got himself a nice Swedish chainsaw. Much as we love hand tools, this one did require power!

All tooled up
Already the woodshed is full (always a reassuring thing) and next we're going to fill up the area next to the garage with stacks and stacks of wood. Next year, we'll hopefully get around to roofing this bit over to create proper wood storage. The little shed really only holds enough for six to eight weeks.

The weather has gone a bit unpleasant at times. We've had plenty of rain and a little bit of hail:

Hail stoned patio
It's been a good time for indoor jobs, baking, cooking and eating. 

Cosy dinner
Friends of ours have kindly given us a sourdough so at last we can bake the kind of loaves we really like. The bread baking is Jim's domain and he's made some fine loaves so far: Borodinskys (a Russian rye with coriander seeds), wholemeal sourdough rolls with linseed and even sourdough tea cakes. Our bread consumption has almost reached French levels!

Borodinksy and sourdough rolls
The winter veg are doing well in the veg garden, but it's just not looking its best at this time of year. I've sown the overwintering broadbeans (and peas and sweet peas in the greenhouse), weeded the overwintering onions and spread the Egyptian onions around a bit, but other than that there's not much doing gardening-wise.

Leeks, cabbage, swede, parsnip and celeriac

The muddy-looking broadbean area with the garlic bed in the foreground
Spring cabbage coming along
Looks like there'll be sprouts for Christmas
The conservatory's had a major autumn clean, and the greenhouse is awaiting the same treatment.

Cleared-out conservatory, just the overwintering plants left
I'm afraid it was time to say good-bye to old Russell this month, before he and his son would start fighting. He made a couple of very tasty soups and a casserole. He served us well in death, as in life.

Russ was not a friendly animal, but did a great job keeping the flock together and safe. He loved a good fight with us and our visitors and is survived by his five children, Soruss, Magnolia, Brown, Charcoal and Ash. We'll always remember him. The cock is dead. Long live the cock!

Russell RIP


  1. Glorious colour Russ had - you could have made fine dry flies from his neck feathers (hope you did or do...)