Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Summer days

The roses around the yard are flourishing - these photos were taken this morning in hot sunshine. Sadly, the grass and weeds are also growing at high speed. Time for a quick tidy up before our next guests - the first of many back to back summer bookings - arrive. The gardener (Bill!) has been somewhat preoccupied with the new kitchen building but has been told he'll be on duty next week to ensure everything's looking its best!

Our goslings are still thriving!

Growing fast and could do with more space - trouble is, we let them out the other day for some supervised exploration, and within minutes the pair of buzzards we're normally so pleased to see, were hovering with intent. The goslings were shepherded back into the nursery and will have to grow a bit bigger before we risk them being out in the open with the other hens!

Other news: the farmhouse garden, building site for so long, has today been graded with the digger and the first stages of preparation for turfing begun. Our girls will be ecstatic to have a garden to play in again in time for the summer holidays! Inside, the new kitchen is decorated now and glazing goes in on Friday. The floor's been sealed and waxed and looks as though it's been in situ since the house was built in the 15thC! Best of all, our prized dresser is now in place and it's wonderful to see it at full height again (having been cut down long ago, we've never before had the ceiling height to reinstate it). Photos will follow as the hated temporary kitchen is transferred to the new space over the next week or so. Grand plans are being hatched for a suitably celebratory kitchen-warming party!

We're looking forward to welcoming some diverse groups this summer, from extended family breaks to hen parties and walking holidays. Anyone thinking of an autumn holiday, now's the time to book - more choice of dates, and more time to look forward to it! Check back soon for more updates and photos on summer at Luggs.

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Twin babies - and Luggs lamb

Our little gosling now has a sibling! Both are gorgeous, thriving and cheeping constantly! They seem to be enjoying their nursery with Mum but despite their tiny feet it's amazing the mess they're making of the little patch of grass, we keep having to move their house. The third egg was thrown out of the house by Mum this morning - never a good sign to see she'd given up on it - and when we cracked it open (with some apprehension as to what we'd find) we discovered that it hadn't been fertile, it was just a normal egg. Clearly she knew to concentrate on the two babies and it's lovely that they have each other for company.

We had the very first roast this evening of Luggs lamb and it exceeded our admittedly high expectations! Made some mint sauce with fresh mint from the garden and it was the best meal of the month. Absolutely beautiful lamb, clearly the pasture and lifestyle here are as good for livestock as they are for people!

We do plan to send a couple more lambs away in the next few weeks and it will be available from Kittow Cattle in their award winning meat boxes, so if you're a fan of lamb make sure you get in touch well in advance!

We're off to the Salvo Fair at Knebworth this weekend to browse the numerous architectural salvage stands - so visitors this summer should look out for a few more quirky additions to the grounds. Check back soon to see what we find, and for more news on life here at Luggs.

Thursday, 16 June 2011

Life cycle

The first of (hopefully) 3 goslings has just hatched! Went out to collect the eggs for a cake earlier this evening and there was a little bundle of yellow fluff being fiercely guarded by its Mum.

One of the other hens tried to help by sitting on the remaining two eggs as this one was getting upset at having to choose - really sweet! Mum and baby will have a nice new and ultra safe little home in the morning - this one's a few days early so the nursery wasn't quite ready!

Other news: our first two lambs have come back from the butcher with excellent grades - we knew the Luggs pasture produced the finest meat! Great news and already almost all the cuts are spoken for - we'll keep some back for a big family get together this summer though, hopefully to celebrate finishing the new kitchen extension on the main farmhouse.

Check back for further updates on our first baby's progress - and any suggestions for names will be considered! Not sure yet whether this one is a boy or girl - if the former, Christmas Dinner springs to mind...