(Picture: Sun coming up in the morning)
We're just briefly back up north - and in computer land - for a day for so. We've been down on site for the week and it's great to be back with the cats - I do miss them when we're away (but we'll have them down with us by the end of the month if all goes well).
When I'm down on site what I REALLY MISS having web access. I can check emails in the library - but can't upload .. so the pictures of the shell going up may be delayed. (I've tried to sign up for mobile broadband but they won't accept my northern Ireland address .. they need utility bills from southern Ireland .. and I can't get them until the house is up - catch 22. Mind you - I have a cunning plan, fingers crossed).
Anyway, it was a quiet week on site (with no house going up). Even the groundworks crew never made it to dig ditches and sort the sewage. We had a very cold start to the week down there and it was a great relief when it turned milder midweek.
I still love it down there and the stream is as magical as ever.
We also have frogs and spawn in the 'pond' ( the test pit they dug before we bought the land).
As there was little to 'do' on site (can't fence yet until our other boundary goes back on Monday) we thought we'd go out and have some fun. So, we went to see some breeders of ornamnetal ducks - as I fancy a few ducks - they're great for slug control, lay nice big eggs, are friendly and look sweet pottering about.
Our favourites were the Cayuga - a black duck which shine with green irridescence in the sunlight. They lay well, are fairly quiet and docile.
The most common 'layer' seems to be the khaki Campbell ( see below)- they didn't have any of those for us to see .. as they keep mainly ornamentals. I've just read that the Campbell integrates very well with chickens (they just need shallow water), so who knows which sort we'll choose in the end. Time now to make some pens and hen houses methinks.
I'd love to get the ducks soon - to prepare the polytunnel area. Mind you I may be moving the tunnel - as the area I'd planned for it has been levelled with clay and so now is a quagmire fit for the finest Glastonburyesque festival antics. Wellies to the ready!
I think I might re-plan and site it on some untouched ground further down the site (rather than risk it blowing away in the first wind or losing stability in the clay). Funny what you don't think of earlier!
We also managed to get out and about in the evenings (making the most of our time before we are up to our necks in plasterboards and stud walls). Thanks to all who made us welcome at the sessions in Drumshanbo.
Back here, I'll admit that I did sow some aquadulce broad beans a week ago and although there are no sprouts up I did see some roots popping out of the bottom of the rootratiners already. I'll refrain from further sowing until our overiszed cold frame (i.e. the house shell) is up next week.
I'm trying not to go into countdown mode or get too excited about the shell coming, just in case there are anymore delays, but fingers crossed we'll be all systems go next Tuesday morning. Pictures will be taken and posted as soon as I can upload them.