This blog is mainly a rambling kind of diary of the transition from smallholderwannabe to smallholder.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Who says there is no such thing as a free lunch?

Covent Garden are offering £1 vouchers off their soup at the moment and right now this soup is on offer in Asda for £1.  Offer is limited to one coupon per person.

Free New Covent Garden Soup

I think that Covent Garden soup may be on our lunch menu next week : )

I've fallen behind with my task of losing 1000 items out of our house this year. With the allotment and being away for a week and filling the freezer and jamming, I've lost the momentum of getting on with sorting through stuff. I need to find where I put that particular mojo!

621 items gone


Thursday, September 24, 2015

Jam time again

I've been busy making jam again.  So far I've made:

blackberry and apple
blackberry and plum
blackberry medley
four fruit marmalade
apple and sloe jelly
autumn jelly

No pickles yet.  Our little tree has excelled itself and I have processed about 50lbs of damson plums.  I have 16 bags of stewed fruit in the freezer and many lbs of jam.  We have a bramble in te garden that I would not let my husband get rid of until I had picked the fruit.  So far I've had about 4lbs of fruit from it as well as picking blackberries from any other place that I find them.  I've managed to scrounge apples from a couple of people to add to the jams and have four (so far!) bags of stewed apple with sultanas in the freezer for winter puddings.  I love stewed fruit with yoghurt for pudding. Yum! I've also bottled 12 small jars of apple sauce.

We lost our big freezer and also our little one in the last year. We've replaced the big one but not bought a little one.  I was trying to do without it but I answered a Freecycle ad last week and have now got a new (to me) small freezer again. Yay!  The theory goes that the small one gets used to house the harvest and gets turned off when empty.  My last little one never got to be empty because I would fill it with yellow stickered bargains.  I was so upset when that one died because we didn't notice until there was a funny smell and so we couldn't rescue anything.  Right now, having extra freezer space, I feel like a squirrel putting away a good food store for the wintertime : )

Talking of jam - has anybody else spotted that Lidl have their sugar on sale at 39p?  It is only just a year ago that sugar was nearly £1 a bag!  I shall have a few packs in store for Christmas baking and further marmalade making. I suspect Aldi will have their sugar at a similar price too.

This post has been edited to keep my list of preserves up-to-date so that I know what I have made.

617 items gone


Thursday, September 10, 2015

A week away

This last week we went to stay at the farm in Wales where we have been before.  Our eldest granddaughter wanted us to take her and it was booked about six months ago before any cat issues arose.  If I hadn't gone, then my husband would not have gone and then my granddaughter would not have been able to go either.  So I bullied my son into agreeing to see to the hens and the rabbit and calling in three times a day to see to my poor old cat.

The week away was absolutely lovely.  Yes we had a bit of rain but we did choose to go to Wales : ) We also had a lot of dry weather in between the wet bits so we were still able to go out and about.  We like to go on to the moors with our boots and have a nice walk, chat to the sheep and then go back to the car for a cuppa and a read with lots of looking at hills.  My granddaughter was helping on the farm each afternoon so we were free after lunch to go out on our own.

Since we had gone to a rural area, I went to lots of shops and feed merchants looking for a new pair of wellies.  I want a pair of slightly shorter ones but couldn't find anything apart from Dunlop green up-to-the-knee ones and Hunters at £70.  Looks like I'll have to put up with my really old ones for a bit yet.

The rabbit and the hens survived us being away and so did my cat but she has faded so much this week that I took her to the vet this morning and she is now buried in the garden beside her friend, my other cat.  Both of them developed cancer of the mouth which is a dreadful way to go. The poor thing was just skin and bone as she could no longer eat very well.  I cooked a chicken breast for her breakfast and chopped it almost into powder so she could lick it up. The vet was so nice and understanding.  I took him back the tablets that we had not got through as he uses them for any strays that are ill and brought in to him.  It is better than just putting them in the bin.  My house is so empty this afternoon. 

615 items gone

Labels: ,