Now as those that have been following me in my attempts at moving ever closer to partial self sufficiency, which is to grow fruit and vegetables to accompany the free range meat I already produce, will already know that Dave the Lamb lost the plot last year and thwarted my attempts good and proper.
For those that don't, Dave the Lamb was one of last year's lambs that I hand reared in the house after his mother died after giving birth to him and his twin Poppy who sadly I didn't manage to save. Dave was one of the porliest lambs I have ever dealt with and I fully expected to lose him too. Dave, however, had other ideas and is alive and well on Nunnery Farm. In fact Dave has become somewhat of a local celebrity as he always comes with me on the dog walks around the valley and has been known from time to time to accompany me in the Landrover! Dave's problem is he has no idea he is a lamb!
Dave would go out in the garden as he was slowly getting better and would always be with me during the day outside developing the veg patch and all was well. I imagined chutneys and fruit wines. Dave however had other plans which included eating everything in site and if he didn't like the taste of something he would make his bed in it. Dave the Lamb went berserk. It was so late on in the year when he did this (just as everything was getting ready to be eaten by ME!) that I actually thought I would have very little to show for my efforts at the end of the year. I am happy to say I was totally wrong!
The plants grew back in no time, my strawberries and raspberries grew in abundance, I couldn't move for blackberries, the hens laid plenty of eggs, in fact we got so much out of the veg patch that I couldn't have been more pleased.
This year I have already started outside and will tell you about that again but I intend to leave out the things I didn't make much use of and replace them with more of what I did. When the year ended I had made so much fruit vodka I thought it would last me a lifetime and I was certain that Christmas would be a very merry one indeed.
The meat I produced on the farm last year meant that I did not buy a single piece of lamb, pork or beef. The sausages were split into 3 flavours pork/leek, pork and spicy pork which unfortunately other people have now discovered and my stocks have depleted!!
I made lots of chutney and I still have lots left so at last I have a little home produce larder and have a small pile just aging nicely.. Unfortunately I didn't manage to save any of the vodka and considering the amount I produced is a little bit of a concern - I will simply have to make more this year!
Dave the Lamb was forgiven and still spends his days playing with the dogs and joins in chasing the cats and he still gets into bother. The dogs are ok, the cats are still going and Kyle who is 2 now is having the time of his life and becoming quite the farmer!