Sunday, 28 August 2011

Oh...What a night !....

The boys back in the barn....and tasting the new hay !

The Nick Nacks.....

The girls...are slightly wetter the rain is coming in the doors!!

Outside.....its horrendous !!

The boys have had a horrendous night...out...shivering and soaked...but there in now !!

What a night we have had.....

The weather has turned for the worst and I think we are now getting the rain and winds that most of the rest of the country have experienced over the past week.

The poor boys have had a night of it......and were soaked right through.

Not only do we have horrendous weather, I have woken up with a cold !

So its a case of feeling completely under the weather......I have brought the boys in, the barn is proving very useful.....indeed.

The girls did have a nice clean, dry barn, last night ! This has been short the rain is battering off the gable end of the barn....and running down the wall, onto the big doors...and its running in the, unfortunately the nice dry barn now had a bit of a water feature running through.....most of the floor is soaked...and the girls, have found a dryer huddle into.....

I can feel another job on the list....I need to build a canopy....over the doors..for this kind of stop the rain bleaching in !

Apart from that.....once again the fires on and I'm feeling a bit sorry for myself....and I have

a..........runny nose !! ............and a dripping window !!

Saturday, 27 August 2011

No Rest for the Wicked !!

Nosey !!...

Zanubis ....

Another job...crossed off the list....

So much so for a day off.....

Today, I decided to crack on and muck the barn out. It has needed done for a little while.

Although I use the tractor...thankfully it does most of the heavy lifting. I still have to take down the divides....move one or two large gates....and move several pallets...which I use for partitions.....this usually takes a couple of the time I put all the muck tines on and open.....several gates....close several stop the horses escaping...and then....I have to clean the barn out.....and put it all back together...then bed them all up....

I started at 1pm and I have been on all afternoon, I have just finished at 5pm.....It takes ages to tie...and untie all the binder twine.....

So tonight I have a nice clean barn, I know the alpacas will appreciate it when they come in. The weather has been much cooler today, mind you we haven't had the torrential rain yet !

Now I have this job crossed off the list....I think I'm up to date, so I can have a bit of a rest.

Just keeping one eye on the come the forecasts...always get the cloud/rain right, but never seem to have the same accuracy with the sunshine !!

The nights are getting much much quicker.....which can only mean one thing.....the seasons are changing.....and it won't be long till my lovely little Swallow friends leave me once again, for warmer climes....!!

I have the fire on tonight, as it is cooler this evening......I'm off for a nice long hot shower......I think I deserve it !!

Friday, 26 August 2011

Done...and Dusted !

What a wonderful sight !!......(for me anyway)

The Nick Nacks....are growing up very nicely !!

My lovely two Wyandottes.....and Norris...

Some of the bales...waiting to be wrapped.... can you spot Slinky !!

Tonight the quest to get some haylage is....done for the time being.

Last night I had to help bring the remainder of the haylage up to the barn to get was dark by the time we got finished so I couldn't take a photo of the finished stack.

So this morning, when I let the alpacas out....I managed to take a photo for the blog.

I am really quite pleased with the end result, however I shall not know exactly what its like till I open them around 10 to 14 weeks time....then if it has been a success ...then I shall really know.

In the meantime....we are forecast some of the horrible weather that most of the UK has been getting......the high winds and the rain over the weekend.

Yesterday morning before I went out to move the hay...I managed to do a bit of spinning, this has been washed and dried...and it is now a little ball of wool...which will make its way down to the GWR Yarn Show........

I have also been keeping a close eye on Zakhura and Zirrianna...after their injections.....I think that Zakhura looks happier already.....and Zirrianna looks fine, but it was a case of having to treat both of them.

Both will have another injection 10 days after their first one.

I have relocated the muck spreader tonight, to make some extra space in preparation for mucking out the barn. I shall be doing this sometime I will have to tidy up the barn as I will have to make extra room for the next pending hay crop and the straw for the winter. back is aching....for a change !!

Whey.....Hay......lage !!

A bit to go.....and the baler was not working !!

Working fine.....

Just starting to row up....

Wednesday afternoon........before all the work !

It was all go yesterday...

In the morning I thought I'd have a look at the progress of the pending....haylage ! It was debatable if I needed to turn it again, or just get straight into rowing it up.....thankfully I decided it was ready to go...and I just had to row it I started at 1pm.....and I was busy all day what with one thing and another....I was still carting hay in at 10pm....last night...with very limited lights on the tractor.....I have one side that works..and the other side that doesn't !

The haymaking was not without its usual trials...for some reason...the baler was not working was wrapping sometimes...and not took quite some time to get it sorted.......after a bit of a carry was sorted and off we went !

At a guess....I think that it was about 7 acres...that was cut, I have managed to get 70 bales of what is supposed to be haylage. It is a bit of a trial run this year, so I won't really know till I open the bales in the winter. Last night I managed to cart about 48 bales of hay and bring them up to near where they were to be stacked. I had ran out of space, so today I had about 28 bales to collect off the field this afternoon......I had brought them to the top of the field, just in case I had room to get them all stacked in the place I had hoped for.....and tonight all the bales are wrapped and stacked nice and neatly, ready for the winter.

Most of this will be for the horses, mainly for one who has a dust allergy.....but if its good..I shall try the alpacas with it....but I still have another 8 do, so I'm sure I will have plenty, depending on the weather, it will either be.....hay or haylage.

Then I still have the boys field to get cut.....this will be made straight into silage...for the cows !

I am just pleased that one filed is done and dusted. Just waiting for a nice break in the weather....for the next episode.

I am hoping to get a photo of the nice neat stack.....of haylage as it was dark..when we got finished.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

I have Trailed.....and Tribulated !!..Already !!

Just starting out...on the make some.....haylage this year !

Zakhura..has got a skin problem....which came as a bit of a shock ! we are treating it !

I have 'Blinged Up' ..the Hayturner !

The boys the other day.....waiting at the gate !

As usual the trials and tribulations...have been experienced already with the haymaking experience !

Sunday was a bit of a slow cut a very long story short, after three attempts with the tines bending.....I decided to call in the experts to see what was going wrong...I had three attempts at turning the hay...and I got one row done...then the tines were bending...I just couldn't work out why ! The first of my bolts which secure the hay turner onto the tractor fell out...and the turner was not running this bent the tines !

Anyway.....I rang the contractors for some advice ....and thankfully he was at the yard...and came over to have a look !

There was nothing seriously wrong..with things...but after I had taken off all the tines on one side....I was definitely ....confused...about the arrangement....and I was sure some were on wrong ! but I had myself in a bit of a muddle....there was one or two wrong but the most of them were ok.

It is difficult to see how its running ...whilst driving the it was good that James could stand and see it working.....a little bit of final adjustment...and it was right.

So after starting at 12.30pm and expecting to be done in a couple of hours.....I hadn't even got started till 4pm.....I battled on and thankfully all ran well....I eventually got finished at about 6pm.

Now when I parked that tractor up for the evening....I decided to mark the tines and direction....after all I didn't want to get in a muddle again....if I was to find myself in the same I have 'blinged' up the hay turner !!.....I have a Blue side and an Orange side !..with directional arrows...just for good measure !!

Its very nothing else...and I don't care....what anyone else long as I the thing works !

On a different note.....last night I noticed that my black girl Zakhura.....had several baldy sores on her back....which surprised me to say the I bring the girls in every night and spend hours..with them...I was very surprised that I had missed this ! Im was checking her only a couple of weeks ago...and strangely enough, I thought she looked a bit poor ..!! I had thought that it was maybe due to the fact that Zirrianna might have been pulling her down...however after discovering her skin problems...this also obviously has had an effect on her condition.

She has been sprayed....with Terramycin, and she has also had an injection of I think this is a mange problem.....I have discussed this with Rob & Les at Wellground, and it might be a thought that she could have caught this from the local she was fine a couple of weeks I guess its a possibility, and I know for sure that we have not caught any thing from any other we are a closed herd !

So I shall be keeping an extra special close eye on her and Zirrianna, over the next few weeks....she will get a repeat injection in 10 days if it is mange....this should do the trick....

Just goes to matter, how careful you are...there is always something to catch you out....!!

Friday, 19 August 2011

Hay...... we go Again !!

The boys today....enjoying the sun..

Just starting....about 8pm this evening....

The big tractor....makes my little tractor look dinky !

My preparation team....this afternoon.....we are ready...I think !!

Well its that time of year again....the quest to win the hay, haylage & silage has started !!

After checking the weather forecast for the next week......apart from one shower threatening....on Tuesday...its according to the Met Office...looking good...

So, today I rang the contractors...who are obviously working flat ask if they could fit me in for getting the fields cut. I was hoping for today sometime, or maybe tomorrow.

I decided to have quite an early finish tonight, I was all done by 7.45pm....then you guessed it, I could hear a tractor......and I thought to myself...I bet its the contractors coming up the track !

So as I type, they are cutting the 10 acre field, well actually more like 7 or 8 acres, as I have decided to graze the cows on a section for the summer....then after that is done, he's going to cut the hill...this is about 8 acres he's going to be on till midnight I guess....

The lights are on the tractor and its all go, so guess what I'll be doing over the next few days....yep....trying to get the hay made, the haylage prepared and at some point when the contractors are not so busy...I will be getting some silage done on the 6 acre field that the boys graze.

So wish me luck....and keep your fingers crossed for a nice dry spell....and no disasters !

This afternoon...I have managed to move a stack of pallets, which were in the way of the hay turner, I have moved just about every bit of machinery in order to get the hay turner out. I have spent most of the it a bit of a service, everything is oiled, greased and checked....for the start of the hay making quest.....

Just got to hitch it up...and off we go !

I wonder how we are going to get on this year !

I'm hopeful and lets hope it stays that way !!!!

I shall keep you to the trials and store !

Thursday, 18 August 2011

High Spirits....and Ladies that Lunch !

YIPEE !!.........eeeee Zoretah in mid air along with Zirrianna, Zirrius and Zimushka today !!

Guess Who !! .........

Anna with Minstrel ......

Irma, Kim and ........little me !! with Zeuss in the background.....

Kim......their behind YOU !!

Yesterday was the final day for Irma and Kim on their holidays.....but before they left we obviously had to try and have a normal sort of day !....

We decided to go out for lunch ...... now some of those who know me....will know that I don't get out the thought of a ladies that lunch afternoon...was quite exciting...!!

It would give me a chance to take the overall off...and the smelly wellies....and try to dress....for the wellies required !

Irma, Kim, Anna and myself went to a lovely little restaurant...where they do a very nice paninni !......and the Knickerbocker Glory...was a must !!, it was very nice indeed.

After the little lunch treat it was time to don the old togs and do what comes natural...of course...spend some quality Alpaca time....

I managed to capture some nice photos of Kim and the babies......who are very keen to come and spend a bit of time in your company.

Yesterday, we said our 'Goodbyes' and as far as I know...Irma will be somewhere at sea...between England and Holland.....tonight.

I decided to also have some quality alpaca time today.....I managed to capture the babies in really high spirits....having a fantastic time....chasing each other round the one point running flat out.....its really quite worrying when they're at full pelt !

So now we are back to reality....and normal, if you can call it that. I have a bit of a spinning mission to conquer........not to mention the big Haymaking........some time soon, weather pending.

Sunday, 14 August 2011

A Sort of a Normal Day ....nearly !!

View across.....Cullen beach......and a lovely sunny day....!!

The horses...having a quick brush.....with Kim & Irma today !

One of the lovely fisherman's Cullen

A nice walk along the footpath to the beach....

Obviously some are starting to wonder, if I ever have a sort of normal day, as asked by Barbara at Beckbrow !........ well actually the short answer is No !!

At the moment my friend Irma is staying with me with her daughter Kim, having a little holiday, the day started quite normal...which was nice.

I left Irma and Kim brushing the horses, whilst I decided to cut the its been so wet, I haven't been able to get it cut.

Then later in the afternoon we decided to go to Cullen for an ice you do ! The queue was out of the door onto the pavement, when we arrived........however we were swiftly served.....once again they had run out of strawberry flavour....I had to resort to second choice lime !!

We had a lovely walk round Cullen, through the little fisherman's cottages.....they weather was lovely and the scenery is just gorgeous....I was just enjoying having a bit of a day off....or so I thought !...little did I know what was in store..!!

We returned back home after doing a bit of shopping.....a quick trip to the 'Spotty Bag' shop for some dog chews....and it was time to drive back home ....

As it was such a lovely day, I decided to open my driver's, its been playing up making a funny noise for years......but little did I expect it to drop inside the door panel and get stuck..!! I had to drive all the way home....with a stuck open window....just in time for the odd spot of rain the threaten....!! guess what I was doing after I got home, yep dismantling the full door try and fix it !

After a little while I had a nice amount of various screws, nuts, the odd speaker, door panel, and various bits and pieces.......after about half an hour.....we managed to find a new bolt...and find the broken piece...well the bit that had dropped off, well I have never dismantled a car door before........but I quickly managed to see how it worked......we had a bit of an ordeal trying to get the glass..inside both of the guides either side of the glass....but thankfully we managed, little did Irma know that she would be doing a quick course in car door fixing.

I have oiled the bits that move.......given it a quick try and tonight, I have a nice smooth window.......and its working...better than it has for years.....

So in answer to Barbara's I ever have a normal sort of day.....well.......Im still see...who knows...what tomorrow has in store !!

Saturday, 13 August 2011

What a week !!!!

Zoretah & Zirrius.......

The 5 Zanzibah babies......Zirrius, Zadi~Blanca, Zimushka, Zirrianna, Zoretah !

No next year !

Carl & Rosemary.....and whats left of their car !!

The boys sheltering in the new barn, soaked.....

Where do I start..what a week indeed.......the time has just flown by !

On Monday evening I was enjoying a nice shower...around 7pm my phone started I never get many phone calls...and I thought they would ring back....this they did, actually about 4 now I was wondering who on earth was that....I was in the middle of washing my I couldn't nip out and answer it !

Anyway....I eventually got out of the check my phone, then the house phone rang, it was Rob from Wellground...asking if I was ok......yes I replied, then the next thing was ...he thought that I may be required...!! briefly Carl & Rosemary from Westhill Alpacas in Dorset, were up in Scotland, they had a car accident and to cut a very long story short, were stranded at Keith about 25 miles from me.....bedraggled outside Tesco's !!

I got ready quickly and made my way over to collect them, we had been battered by torrential rain over the past couple of days, all the roads and fields were flooded, the river Isla had burst its bank and swelled to triple its size........needless to say both Carl & Rosemary were soaked and shaken with their ordeal, they had spent a couple of hours in the local hospital, making sure they were ok....we then went to Huntly to collect belongings from their car, what a right off.....actually guys, you were very lucky come off with minor injuries.
We called for fish n chips at the chippie, then made our way back to my place. Next day, problem to get back to Dorset, well once again, cutting a very long story short, we managed to find a little fiesta to get them home, my friend Anna had a little run-about, she was actually going to sell it nothing else for it, Rosemary & Carl, acquired another vehicle........and its done them proud, getting them all the way back to Dorset, apparently the heater was on constantly, and they ended up.....sweating all the way there !

As I had mentioned the weather, which has been horrendous, the boys were brought into the emergency shelter ! the barn.......just as well we got it nearly finished, they have spent various nights, in and out .......its great.....I'm even thinking of extending the other time my parents come up in September !

I had one more mating to do....I had thought that Duke might like a lady friend........however he let the side down......!! He was squealing as I caught him, all through getting his halter on....then.....he took a little look at Tremona...who quickly put him in his place.....ears back and hint of an orgle....and there was definitely no romance on the menu !!

Maybe next year...he might be more grown up !.......(I'm begining to think....he might never grow up !!)

So it was back to plan B..... Tremona has been romanced by Zorba.......he has produced me 4 girls, out of 4 I wonder what we get next year......he is a lovely boy, with huge amounts of fleece, he actually yields the most fleece of all. He is also very nice I shall be watching to see.....what we get next year...he is the father of Zadi~Blanca, Zienna and Zakhura......sadly the other girl was a still birth.

So basically that is a capsule of last weeks events......

My friend is coming to visit me today, from Holland, with her children, they are staying for a couple of that should be a nice break for all of us.......

I'm keeping a close eye on the weather......I can smell a dry spell.....coming !

Thursday, 4 August 2011

Growing up Nicely !

Zadi Blanca and Zimushka.....





We have been taking things easy over the past week.

I had been keeping an eye on the weather in anticipation for haymaking, however the forecast keeps changing and I think that it will be postponed for the here and the now, until we get a nice dry spell !

The weather is very unsettled at the moment so I think we will wait a little longer.

I have been out with the camera to get some recent pictures of this years cria, we currently have five babies, and one unknown !....I was hoping there was one more to come, however as time goes by.....I think not !

The girls and babies are back in their field, I did have the Nick Nacks in there for all of a day, until Stravinsky decided to take a little too much interest in Tremona.....and I decided to separate them back into the little paddock.

All that is left now is for me to decide on the romantic liasions for the future....but one thing for sure..... Im definitely going to repeat the union of Dusty and Zelqui !...This has produced me two beautiful greys.......Zeto and Zimushka. I am also going to repeat the same mating with Zakhura and Zanubis.....this has given me Zirrianna.... just got to sort out the others.....

So looks like Im going to be a bit busy over the weekend......