180 days ago
As you may have gathered, I have become a bit of a bore on the subject of nature warning us of cold weather ahead and in that vein, I am bracing myself for frost and worse next week. I was working outside for most of the day in preparation for this and while the sky was a clear blue there was a real nip in the air.
216 days ago
Joshua and I are now almost at the end of On the Shores of Silver Lake the fourth of the books by the great libertarian author Laura Ingalls Wilder. My old babysitter, DD, is also re-reading the series, just for her own pleasure, and is now a book ahead of us in The Long Winter. She says I must store up well at the Welsh Hovel as tough and cold times lie ahead. However, on that front, today saw a gut-wrenching setback.
255 days ago
So far I have done the easy bit, the hard yards come in about ten days time. But this is a big harvest. For cultural reasons – the Mrs being of Indian descent – we use quite a bit of garlic and onion in the cooking here and if I have got this right we will not be heading to the shops for supplies all winter.
270 days ago
I try to encourage Joshua to get involved with bringing vegetables and fruit in from the garden and storing them up for the winter with tales of how I used to do the same with my father and mother at Butterwell Farm when I was his age. It is a battle to get him involved and ton drag him away from moronic cartoons on the goggle box. Today, so far, I have won. He assisted with the weeding of the part of the vegetable garden where winters and Christmas vegetables are being planted today and where strawberry plants will be transferred shortly. Yesterday he was less help as I brought in an enormous spinach plant which has started sprouting and must have been three foot tall.
2140 days ago
As I mentioned at some stage last week my step mother is keen that fruit from the garden in Shipston does not go to waste. And so I returned home for an all too brief weekend in Bristol with a punnet of gooseberries that I had picked. Oakley's friend Tara was buried beneath the rhubarb earlier this year and, I apologise if you regard this as tasteless but it had come up amazingly.