Wow we're really motoring, kicking ass in the garden department. Husband's petrol chainsaw is cooking on gas, if you'll pardon my mixed metaphor. Trees are being felled, parts of the garden revealed for the first time in 10 years. Dizzy Disco is thoroughly enjoying being a part of the gardening team as we attach a tow rope to him, driving off to pull out deep shrub roots.
The stables are really quite busy now, creating a nice steady- if little, income. All welcome. We have three very social parent/child combinations and a lovely man with a hunter and an unbroken Shetland. It's wonderful seeing the stables buzz and my two sproglets are included in mucking out, feeding and grooming. Occasionally, out of the kindness of someone's heart they are put on a horse and walked down to the menage. It's idyllic but I HAVE ABSOLUTELY NO INTENTION OF GETTING A HORSE. The plan may be to re-start riding lessons next year continuing on from where we left off in Oxford before I was thrown off and needed ankle surgery! So ABSOLUTELY NO horses for the next few years. (Just so we're clear ok?)
The kids are outside most of the time now as the bottom of the bath will testify! The 7yo, a very creative girl, has invented a new game a derivative of paintball - she rolls wet clay, the colour of diarrhea, into a neat golf-sized ball and throws it at her brother. If it hits the 5yo and leaves a mark she scores a point. Generally he thinks this is pretty funny - weirdo! I, being the gardener just use the clay and molehills for planting! Boring I know but that's just me!
The pond is an interesting spot and so far only Daddy has managed to fall in! There are pairs of common newt and millions (I do not exaggerate!) of tadpoles who have escaped the egg sack and are now being predated on by all sorts of creatures that I suspect to be aliens from another planet.
The next door neighbour took his 2 pigs for slaughter. This morning we ate sausages made from the pigs we sporadically helped feed. I'm sure they tasted so nice thanks to that huge apple crumble we gave them in October! My children are beginning to understand the concept of raising meat to eat and with this in mind we are considering raising two little lambs who are mummyless. They are currently residing in a tree farm (no they are not living in the trees silly but rather in one of their barns, raised by two young brothers.) As soon as the lambs are comfortable on the bottle we may be considered for adoption. I had THE conversation with my offspring...
'Now, you understand that we will send these lambs to market when they're older?'
The 7yo nods enthusiastically licking her lips but the 5yo sort of looks at me side-on! I continued:
'You can have one lamb and you can have the other,' I said pointing to each child.
'When we sell your lambs you can use the money we make from the meat to buy something. What would you like to buy?'
The 5yo seemed to immediately approve of this concept.
'I'm getting Star Wars Lego.'
'Good idea. What about you?'
'I'm buying a Shetland Pony and D and L (girls with horses at our stables) are going to break it for me.'
O shit, that SO backfired.