Thursday, 29 January 2009

Photographers, Eggs, Fancy Dress and Cow's Feet!

I am getting all over-excited now! My friend Brian Phipps, see last post, has promised to come up and visit. We've done a deal, if I show him some cool places he'll lend me a camera and teach me a few things! Who got the better deal I wonder?

Also Dee Doody has promised to take me out in March to look for the new Kite nesting sites in the woods near my house!! How bloody lucky am I to have amazing friends like these.

After a rocky start to the year I am at last getting a few things to look forward to.

I have also been invited to a fancy dress Valentine's do at my cousin's pub. It's meant to be a couple thing, you know, dressing up as famous couples. But Hubby will probably be in Scotland, so I was wracking my brain trying to think of who I could go as. I finally decided to go as Lorena Bobbit, 'cos I don't think her husband would accompany her anywhere after that!! I have ordered a plastic knife and, ahem.., a little something else from the internet, and await my unmarked package!! I haven't had a proper night out since before Christmas so am really looking forward to it.

I have had some interesting eggs this week. One of the youngsters who has finally come into lay is laying decidedly pointy shaped eggs! They are really long and thin! I guess when they fill out a bit they will be decent size eggs but for now they do look a little strange!

All I need now is some decent weather so I can get outside and start getting the garden ship shape and take some more photos.

I just thought of something that Trouble said the other day, that made me smile;

I had been talking to the girls about some of the things that go into our food that we don't expect. I asked my youngest if she knew that Marshmallows had cow's hooves in them. (Well gelatine anyway, which comes from cows' hooves, so close enough!) The reaction I got wasn't really what I expected!

'Don't be ridiculous mum, cows feet are crunchy!

Wednesday, 28 January 2009

ABC Wednesday - B Two!!!

Just thought I'd use the opportunity to reintroduce a friend off mine. So B is also for Brian Phipps. He's an old school friend and we go way back. Nowadays he's a wildlife photographer and a bloody good one at that. He's done a fair few magazine articles and the like and is becoming pretty well known. He specialises in British Wildlife and travels all over the UK for his shots.

Check out his website here, and take a look at his work. He sells prints and cards etc, so if you see anything you like you can treat yourself, or someone else to some of his pics.

So go check him out :)

Tuesday, 27 January 2009

ABC Wednesday - B

B is for back at last!! Haven't done this for a while, but pleased to be here again!

B is also for Bryntail Lead Mines. A beautiful place not far from where we live, what's left of the mines lay at the base of the Llyn Clywedog dam, near Llanidloes, Powys.

Bryntail Mine, a Guardianship Monument in the care of Cadw, was worked between the late 18th century up to the late 1860s, producing lead ore and barytes. Visible workings are largely of 19th century date and include 3 main shafts and a deep adit, well-preserved remains of an earthwork incline, tramway track beds, a leat which once carried water drawn from the Clywedog further upstream, substantial remains of buildings including structures which housed pumping and winding machinery, a barytes mill, mine office, smithy and store building, a circular explosives magazine, together with wheelpits for winding and crushing machinery, ore bins, roasting ovens and precipitation tanks, jigger placements, a washing and picking floor area, buddles, slime pits.
(Information from Clwyd-Powys Archaeological Trust)

The approach to the mines with Llyn Clywedog dam in background

Part of the mine ruins

An old stone wheel

Llyn Clywedog that lies above the mines

A woodland walk close by

Photos mine!

Updates and Adventures

Right, I'm going to try and get back to regular blogging! It's been a really mad start to this year and it feels like it should be about June already!!

Things have improved for Blue quite a lot, she is getting feed and attention at least every other day. Not quite perfect but a damn site better. Her owners aren't spring chickens anymore and I have to hand it to Mrs for going out in the weather we have been having to tend to her. Fingers crossed it will continue. As for the RSPCA they still haven't been back!

Jedi's idea of a good start to the year was to go into hospital on New Year's Eve down in Somerset, when she was staying with my parents and I was stuck up here in Wales suffering terribly from Flu with poor hubby. Just before Christmas she had had a pain in her tummy which went off quite quick and that we put down to trapped wind or something. Anyway it happened a couple of times after that and eventually wouldn't go away, so she was admitted with a suspected apendicitis. She showed all the classic signs and was really quite poorly but when they did blood work there was no evidence of infection. They also did an ultrasound scan and couldn't find anything wrong there either!! I rushed down there on New Years day, still dying myself, and spent a further two nights there with her. They eventually released her with no real explanation for the pain except that it may be a grumbling appendix which may well kick off again. It took quite some time for the pain to go but she is much improved.

Hubby is back in Dumfries, we are on our third week apart :( I'm not sure when he'll be back, he left saying 'see you in February or March!!' He did ask me the other night where in my menstrual cycle I was. I wondered why he was suddenly interested in women's things, turns out he's planning the best time to come home!!! Oh well, at least I know I'm good for one thing, oh and doing the washing he inevitably brings home with him!!!

I am finally getting eggs!!! Yay! My one youngster that had come into lay before winter has finally started laying again, along with two others. The ex-batts haven't bothered yet, but I don't mind that so much, the eggs are a bonus really. It's so nice to have proper eggs again. I really do hate buying them when I have chickens in the garden.

I promised the girls a picnic at the weekend, and you know what happens when you make promises like that, so last Saturday we wrapped up warm and packed some lunch. We headed off to Llyn Clywedog and Bryntail Lead Mines. It was cold but sunny and we had a lovely day. The resevoir is stunning and the kids loved the lead mine ruins. They found a tiny one room cottage and tried to imagine what it would have been like to live there back in the 1800s. They gathered sticks and made a pretend fire in the old fireplace, and swept the floors and scattered grain for the pretend chickens. All the while waiting for daddy to come back from the mines! It was a great day and the weather held off just long enough.

I'll leave you with some pictures.

Wednesday, 14 January 2009


Apologies for the delay in updating you all on poor Blue. Unfortunately my dear Jedi has been attention seeking again (not really!!) and spent New Year in hospital in Somerset! She's fine, problem not resolved yet, but that's a long story for another post!

Anyway, Blue. I had a phone call from an RSPCA inspector back on the 22nd December. Apparantly he had visited on the 19th. I had wondered, because all of a sudden Blue had started getting a little more attention. He told me that he had not been impressed with Blue's conditions and had layed down some requirements, including cleaning her shed and feeding her properly. (The phone call from the Lib Dem office obviously worked!) The inspector told me that he would return the first week of January to ensure that things had improved....... haven't seen or heard from him yet!

But things have improved for Blue, they aren't great, but she is being feed hay and hard feed (although I don't know what), her rug is being adjusted and water is being provided. At the moment this is happening about once every three to four days although one day she was seen to twice!!! Her shed still hasn't been cleaned out but fresh straw has been put down on top. Not acceptable but better. At least she made it through the terrible cold weather we have had. Before Christmas I never thought she would.

I do have doubts that this period of 'care' will last, I think the novelty will wear off quite quick, but we are faced with Blue every day so we won't be giving up. Another call to the RSPCA from the Lib Dem office may be soon needed too. The inspector promised me he would be back and I intend to ensure he fulfills his promise.