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Everything posted by Valkyrie

  1. Marmite - I really don't like, but feel compelled to suck it off the outside of Twiglets - and then have another handful!
  2. Indoor pets for OH! So cute!
  3. Ooh hark at you racing around with one cane already! Super progress and glad everything is going on so well. Not surprised the first couple of days were awful - it's a big operation, amazing you did all that after a few hours!
  4. Ditto - checking up on you that you haven't run off with the physiotherapist - or the doctor!
  5. And now we have thunder and lightening to the north of us! Sheesh! Shortly after we had and still having a whoosh of wind with it.!
  6. Band of thunder and lightening spreading across from the west now.
  7. It must have eased off last night because I didn't hear the wind and no rain when I let the birds out. Wind is a little gusty now, but the rain is heavier and steadier. The flood outside has reappeared as it eventually managed to cope last night and drained away. Since the rain has started the flood is reappearing for the 7th time - the runoff from the fields is too much for it to cope with. The drain on the other side of the road (Somerset) is next to useless as it is on a higher part of the road - go figure! Like what water will go down that anyway! Any water that does seep down there is directed to the Devon drain because there is a huge channel carved out of the bedrock running down the road underneath the driveway. It then reaches a culvert that goes under the road and down the lane - this is the county boundary, which follows the lane down to a stream. The stream is then the county boundary. That culvert also takes the rain water from the hill the other side of us. Further along the other side of the hill in front of us, the water goes to another stream which adds to the river Lowman and that in turn joins the river Exe!
  8. Good question. All were submitted at the same time, but were told the barn comes under agricultural dept and should be applied for separately. So they did. Now it's come back as wrong and should have been submitted with the normal planning - with the kitchen extension and the replacement of the workshop (but adding an extra half floor) so I think the house is still being worked on - as yet heard nothing on that front. I'm thinking Exeter CC.
  9. Barn planning update. After lengthy chats with the surveyor he rang the council to query one of the questions which basically refers to livestock as commercial businesses and the containment and disposal of slurry. He was unable to speak to the guy advising him, but spoke to someone else who promptly told him the form was wrong and he should be filling in form xyz - his response was that was the very form we completed first and was rejected! So he emailed the person to clarify what the heck was going on and that we need to be informed better rather than go around in costly circles! Well it is funny, but frustrating at the same time!
  10. Agree DM. Wind is bad, but not as bad as last week. 50+mph rather than almost 70! But the rain is so much worse this time. OH went to unblock the drain for the 6th time and discovered it wasn't blocked at all - it was sheer volume of water flooding the road again! I gather a lot of roads are closed not only for flooding but also fallen trees. Somewhere near Bovey Tracey has been cut off entirely. Over 2000 homes I gather are without power! Meanwhile the chickens are all hunkered down in the Eglu run - because they don't like the slapping tarps. The ducks are in 7th heaven. Their dibble holes from before are little pools, while the run-off from the shelter where their food is, has a sloping roof and allllllllll the rain has made the ground soft and dibbley and splatterly paddley. It is now a swamp!
  11. Hiya Hopalong Soapycassidy! Half marathon in a couple of months eh!
  12. Still hail here - but it isn't melting. Piffle! You can actually feel the sudden chill when the sun disappears for a short while. I thought I'd be away wedding dressing this weekend but nope, it's the following weekend instead. I wasn't going to the Bantam show because of our anniversary - but that's the weekend I'm away. Bad Koojiebear! On the brighter side I'll be able to get a card while I'm away! Brighter still (maybe not for OH) is I'll be coming home on that day. Who'd have thought 35 years ago we had deep snow that had slowly been thawing when we got married on a particularly hot February day. The guests all had winter clothes, the bridesmaids wore jeans underneath and had shawls - and I had a gypsy off the shoulder (not in church - elasticated and pulled onto the shoulders - very versatile!) dress and even sweltered without thermals or a shawl! DD has my dress, but I was taller than she is!
  13. Guess what! Dennis the Menace is due to arrive this weekend - imagine my utter, utter, utter joy!
  14. Well I've seen a kestrel hovering over the veg patch! Also next door's cat has caught one during the summer - he trotted along with me! Sadly he doesn't appear when the weather is bad and sometimes he's not around when I do go down the end. The buzzard likes perching on the power line post so has a good view of any rodents - bunnies preferably but for opportunist moments it's an ideal perch. It sounds like you are set to romp away now. A five year plan is good. But the heat isn't an issue for us! I don't do very well when it's hot, so anything outside gets done either early in the morning or in the evening. Or chill out under the shade in the orchard with the chickens - and now the ducks! The ducks are now exploring their new estate and have been right down the far end of the field before coming back again. Nice to see them waddling along. I'm in the process of writing pointers of what I feel we should have done when we first moved in, and if anything needs changing. Mainly I'm happy with the way it is, but I would have stopped the farmer with his sheep coming because that set us back quite a lot. I'd also have planted hedging and still someone is sticking their head in the sand and avoiding all progress in that quarter. I'm getting the paddocks fenced while he's away - or will attempt to! At the same time I'll get them to reinforce all the fences around - don't want alpacas disappearing over the bank! I'll also have temporary fencing set back for hedging and trees, plus wildlife plants. We need to reinforce the bank too as the bunnies have made a tunnel and we can see through to the other side! One of the cons was rubbish internet. It's still rubbish and I have no mobile phone signal at all. But a short while ago we lost phone and internet - so did the rest of the village. It seemed another village was affected too. Some fellow was happily trundling along in his tractor trimming the hedges. He also trimmed the phone lines! OH had been away and it happened the day he returned, so trying to report the fault was a pain too. He did manage to get his father via his mobile so he could report it for us. But as he got a bit confused, OH managed to call BT while hanging out of the window upstairs! So we waited a couple of days and nothing. Went down the pub and discovered everyone was out, although the landlord complained to BT that he had 3 lines and needed it repaired for business, so he was sorted the following day. Except he didn't have all the lines. BT insisted all were fixed. So he rang his own number and got a lady in the next village - she phone her number and got someone else! So all the lines were crossed! We eventually got ours back some 11 days later! It was actually quite pleasant - I really got stuck into sorting the sewing room! Our landlady had a hip replacement just after Christmas and before New Year, so no food down the pub for at least 2 months - I gather she's getting fidgety as she loves cooking! So the pub is the source of all sorts of gossip and wonderful food, although each plate is piled high enough to feed an army - and the starters are the same!
  15. Says "undisclosed location" which sounds daft! Unless it might be a small farm? No restriction zones in place either and it sounds like it was discovered a few days ago.
  16. Well I doubt building work will start this year so if you come this year, you can stroke it as much as you like - er if we haven't worn patches from practicing dance moves! He's doing a Backstreet Boys number and 5,6,7,8 and I've been doing Saturday Night Fever (Brooklyn Shuffle) with the Time Warp (again and again and again . . . ) but I have plenty of anti-bac soap and gel afterwards - goodness knows what's in that carpet even if the old Dyson tried to suck the whole thing up from the floorboards!
  17. Dartmoor has snow - we have sleet! Lots and lots of it! Like fluffy lumpy hail! I think I'll get my thermal long-johns on again! But bright in between, so I'll allow it just this once.
  18. Thank you Blackie and Patricia. You'll be welcome DM and MM - just ignore the pub carpets! Actually it is really good quality Brussels weave - it still looks like a pub carpet! Can't see the dirt though - has it's bonuses! I'll need a while to spring clean before you come - tis a bit messy! Not quite sure how, but there are muddy fingerprints on the wall - can only think that was me with my gloves! Well, it has been christened for sure! Our friends across the way are lambing in April - DD has bagged the weekend! I think number one son might like to have a go - I'm hoping she'll take the place on one day. She has the veggie growing bug and always wanted a menagerie! I think she'd do fine. Number one son prefers the wildlife. Today we had our first duck egg! Prime suspect is Daisy who has been nest hunting for some time - although I did put boxes in with lots of straw which turned out to be nasty scary things and none of them wanted to go to bed until I took them out! Egg found in the doorway! I do feel sorry for the ducks, they were raised with all sorts of animals and when they want to say hello and be friends with the chickens, the chickens yell and run away. Same for next door's cat! On a plus side the chickens are going about in one big flock, which is super for me - I don't worry as much.
  19. Well we have been here almost 18 months. In that time we had our veggie patch fenced off, grew veggies - most were great. Some didn't do anything and the winds and rain were a constant thorn in our side. The apples had a rest year and so did the plums, so hoping for a good year if Mother Nature gets her act together and plays nicely instead of throwing a strop. While the walnut tree wasn't as laden, there was still a nice crop and the squirrels were absent until we'd collected enough, then OH decided it was OK to share from then on. We added Muscovy ducks in September and have fingers crossed for eggs soon and we were told February for that. The immense amount of potatoes grown were stored in the garage, but the mice have chomped their way through - which is probably helpful seeing as OH was diagnosed as being borderline diabetic so not eating carbs now. A lot were given to the children and I have the occasional spud, but mostly am trying to follow OH's new regime. Which altogether isn't a bad thing - we have substituted celeriac which I had grown too many of. Maybe it was a premonition! We have field voles. The little monkeys have been eating the celeariac from the outside down leaving little goblets around the edges. Still plenty left though! Planning was submitted but we need to have an eco survey to make sure we aren't disturbing roosting bats. The garage and workshop leaks so much that any bat attempting to roost will likely have constant colonic irrigation. Or blown to smithereens as the roof isn't particularly nailed down that well! The surveyor first plonked a new barn (to go in the field) right on top of the trees in the corner. Nope! Next we had it plonked on the orchard! ARGHHHH! So we went and measured ourselves and are filling in the agricultural application at the moment - with our own measurements. A tad frustrating as we need the barn to house the junk/treasured items!!! from the garage while the building work is done on the house! I see no longarm machine in the near future! Will be lucky if I get one next year! On the plus side OH and I went to a smallholding tour at Jack Smellie's place - never realised she wrote for the magazine I read until later. I'm not the most observant person! We really liked her set-up with the animals all happily living together. That's where we acquired the Musvovies - OH loves his duckies! After that OH is now happy to have alpacas, more so since we lost Goldie to the fox - and a couple of sheep! I'm considering the longwools - I do like the Dartmoor Greyface and the Devon and Cornwall longwools - seeing as they were bred for this environment! I have a fair few wild chickens too - pheasant hens that come up and beg for food - they cheep and I'm powerless to resist! DS came in early September and mowed paths in the field - he was told to be creative! We can now see his paths on the new updated Google satellite pictures! DD got engaged in late September and is getting married in November. Apart from the bad weather - we still love it here, the pros outweigh the cons and we know we haven't made a mistake by coming here. I'm now brainwashing OH for a cat/kitten/puppy (both) but he said no to a rough collie. We'll see about that! I think he wants feral cats while I want a lappy catty! Something to keep me company when he goes off galivanting around the world. He's already organising a holiday with his cousin in Cape Town! Oh puppypuppypuppy . . . . guard dog! So the dreaming never stops!
  20. Super pics - for a minute I thought you found the Quatermass experiment! I gather it is a lobster
  21. We did have a few bits of sleet at one time yesterday but it was a fleety sleety session - for a second or two! During the night there was hail on the windows. OH oblivious! It did sound like we lived on top of a busy motorway as the wind was steady with the gusts getting lesser during the night. Still breezy this morning but only the motorway sound when we have the bigger gust. That oak branch is still on the tree but not bending like it was yesterday! Sun is up too, but clouding a little now. I gather we are due sessions of rainy patches - I can live with that if there is sun in between! No visible damage since the solar panel, but they were creaking on the roof during the night. Ducks are fine, chickens are fine and the structures remained OK. Duke is randy, chickens still whingey - situation normal!
  22. We seem to have lost a bit off our solar panels, like scaffolding connection. OH can't see where it's from - maybe that was the harmonica player. The ducks temporary shelter collapsed. Not that they were bothered - happy as Larry dibbling in the mud and splooshing around in their paddling pools. I don't know why I worry about them. At the moment a little robin is peeping outside! It's still horribly windy. The wet has got into the chicken run, but nothing like before and still mostly dry under the new tarp - so rather pleased as this is out of the ordinary - or is it? Just a tad stronger than we have been getting lately! I have heard a few bangs but not going out to check.

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