Friday, 23 November 2007

Not enough hours in the day

Sometimes I wonder where the days go?
Since the clocks went back it has been none stop.
We both work full time and run the croft as well.
So other things have to take a back seat in the Winter months because there are not enough daylight hours to do the jobs you want to do in the evening.
So for us most weekends are used as catch up days.
Unfortunately for us this has been impossible too as we have for the past three weekends been at our work.
My husband is a full time Fencing Contractor and at the moment he is busy until way after Christmas in the local vicinity thank heavens, this would cause even more work if he was away from home at the moment.
I on the other hand work in Fort William which is a good 35 miles from home, my stores department is going through a refit so I am having to work weekends to get it into shape.

The cattle are all in through the night they started coming in about a fortnight ago.
My husbands father used to have an old saying "better a dry back than a full belly", which I think is so true, they thrive a lot better indoors when the weather is like this.
We have been getting up at 5:30 in the morning to feed the cattle and clean them out, my husband lets them out before he goes to work, he is back home before me in the evening and feeds them in their stalls when they come back in, by the time we have fed the cows, sheep & dogs it is between 8:30 & 9:00pm before we sit down to feed ourselves.

For the past few weeks we have seen nothing but rain and wind, this week has been really kind of mild for the year.
Last week our burns and fields flooded because the water could not get away quick enough, we had Geese and Ducks floating around in what was supposed to be our fields.
But last night it was really cold, my fingers where stinging they felt like frozen sausages.

Well the cows are loving it indoors on a night the calves think they are on holiday.
We have a young calf we called rump ramp romp, he is always last in and last out, he will not go out until he gets his bucket of nuts on a morning, he spends most of the day on his own, although I have noticed that he has started to play about with a much younger calf of late.
Friendship at last from one of his own kind.
His mother does not seem to bother with him, that is until her udder is full, but she can call as much as she likes, he makes her come to him, after all she does not bother with him the rest of the time, it's probably his way of getting revenge on her for ignoring him the rest of the time.

The lambs are getting used to us being around them, the tup craigy is so demanding, when you go in the byre he starts butting the gate and clambering up on the rails to get a scratch on the chin, Poppit one of the Ewe lambs has started taking food from my hand, she stamps her feet on the ground to let you know she is waiting for you to give her a titbit.
The other two lambs are still a bit nervous, but they will come around, they always do.

We are waiting for two calves to be born, one was due on the 20th the other 22nd but as usual they will come when you are really busy or least expect it.
The old crofters used to say the cows usually go with the full moon, if that is the case we should have action stations tonight, I will keep you posted.
I have just purchased a new camera that does movies, if I can manage to figure it out and it is not to dark I am going to try and film the birth and post it for those of you who have not seen a calf being born. fingers crossed.
Anyway must crack on there is not enough hours in the day to sit playing on this all day.