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Last updated: 31 December 2015

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Thursday 31st December 2015

End of another year - by Compostwoman on December 31, 2015 18:07


So, that was 2014. I was going to write a full colour, links and photos year end review but I feel too tired to do it. I am so glad we have got past the Shortest Day as I loath the dark days of winter. The short, sunless days make me feel gloomy and tired and fed up and yes, depressed. I am not depressed for any other reason that I know of but every year I feel dreadful - I believe it is SAD and as soon as the days begin to lengthen I feel better :) But at the moment even trying to be up beat and positive is an effort.

But I have had a think about this year and actually just focussing on the great things that have happened this year has made me feel better :) so I will just highlight a few things from 2014.

Strange to say the biggest and most positive thing to happen to me was getting bitten at the end of June by a Blandford Fly and getting Very Ill Indeed as a result. I know that sounds a bit odd, but being in Hospital for three days and bed ridden for another two weeks and really very ill indeed gave me lots of time to think and ponder about  my health. So I did something about it at last - I went on a new way of eating and have lost six stone since 28th June. I also found out along the way that I have a huge problem with wheat and if I eat any now I am very ill indeed, so I don't. This has meant some modification to our diets so I can avoid wheat and gluten but it has been worth it in terms of health and well being.

Also during the Summer we as a family took up Archery. We now shoot several times a week and have made new friends, have our own bows and kit and are beginning to see improvements in our aim! Great fun and very good for posture and core strength.

I have also welcomed new chickens to Compost Mansions both large and very tiny indeed! The Seramas are a hoot - they are so funny and entertain us all enormously with their silly antics and fun. The Big Girls watch them with bemusement (I think) but continue to provide eggs and turning-over-the-veg-patch duties for us.

The three cats continue to delight and entertain and give love - and lots of dead things as "gifts". Tabitha in particular is a very good ratter and can catch several per day. Good puss!


Despite illness in the Summer I have been out and about a fair bit this year - both as a Master Composter promoting home composting; as a Love Food Hate Waste cookery demonstrator promoting home cooking and real food and with various Arts and craft events and on trips away.

I have also engaged more my artistic and crafty side and have had a go at both needlefelting with Gretel Parker  and silver jewellery making with Hannah Willow. I have also been to many more book launches and gallery exhibitions and charity auctions than usual and have come away with some beautiful unique items. Featuring several times this year have been trips to see artist and author Jackie Morris and Karin of Celestine and the Hare, fibre artist and creator of magical mayhem. Also visits to talented  friend Tamsin Abbott to hear her speak and see her in action at her workshop.

I had a memorable solo trip round Wales at the end of August where I sat by the sea, re visited beaches and sacred sites from my childhood, saw family, watched Ospreys, walked through Slate mines and visited blogging friends. I must go again, soon.

I also met many people this year who I have never met in real life but know well via the internet - I finally met up with John "Compost" Cossham and Deb Millar at the Green Gathering and fellow Forest School Leader Jan came for a visit on her way home to Scotland - I also had a great time meeting up with friends from THD forum at the Conference and at the Christmas get together in Birmingham.

Other stuff has happened here - Compostman and Compostgirl are well; the wood grew, the veg garden flourished and the polytunnel produced loads of food although all was less tidy than normal due to my enforced absence due to illness during July and most of August. The new patio and the flower beds around it were a great success though and I had a wonderful supply of cut flowers from the cutting garden as well as loads of herbs from the new herbery - it all looked fab as well from inside the house.

We still have not started on the pond filling/ digging new one yet though! I have also had a rethink about the new pond in the garden area - because I don't want to attract Blandford Flies and because we use the grass area to shoot over and a pond would stop it being used for Archery.

But this year has been mainly about changes for me; new friendships and moving outside my comfort zone a little; going off on a solo holiday, dramatically changing the food I eat, getting a new car (had the old one for 12 years so this was a big change for me!) and of course always learning new crafts.

I hope I continue to learn and grow and change in 2015. I do hope to visit more sacred sites in 2015 than I managed this year; I want to go back to Avebury, see some long barrows, Silbury Hill again and hopefully re visit Stonehenge now it is less cluttered by a road!  And I must finish some of the WIPs in the quilting and crochet piles! I also have jewellry making kit to play with, now ;)

One thing is sure life is never dull here.

I also hope I meet up with more of you in 2015, I love meeting up with blogging buddies so please if you are in my area do get in touch and let's try to meet up :) If you "do" Facebook and want to friend me personally (as opposed to the Compost Bin Fb page)  - send me an email with your real name so I recognise you when the friend request comes in, otherwise I won't know who you are :)

Wishing you all a very Happy New Year and a wonderful 2015. xxx

A Look Back | 2014 Favourites - by Dorset Finca on December 31, 2015 07:40

This has been a truly great year and I can’t believe we’re on the cusp of a new one. Don’t get me wrong, the last twelve months have had their fair share of ups, downs and mega downs, but looking back … Continue reading →

Wednesday 30th December 2015

2014 in review - by PurpleTree on December 30, 2015 11:54

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog. Here’s an excerpt: A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 2,800 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 47 trips to carry that many people. Click here to see the […]

Sunday 14th June 2015

I hope you’re having a relaxing Sunday morning. Perhaps a cup of tea, croissants and a read of the Sunday paper. Maybe a catch-up of your favourite weekly blog reads or getting ready to see family. This morning is definitely a relaxing one here at the Finca.  We’ve had a busy few weeks and it’s time […]

The post A Lazy Breakfast And The Big Blog Meeting appeared first on The Dorset Finca.

Thursday 11th June 2015

Sweet Summer Strawberries… - by Hen Corner on June 12, 2015 01:12

‘Summer afternoon, summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.’* *Henry James Like children gazing out of the window into the dark night of Christmas Eve, we wait as patiently as we can for the arrival of summer. Is it here yet? I think so; the […]

Wednesday 10th June 2015

Half a dozen... - by Martin Blyth on June 10, 2015 14:42

Since my last post, Clarabelle has been in prolific form. She started laying last Friday and then has continued to bless us with eggs for 6 consecutive days. We had some with gammon the other night and it is lovely to be eating fresh eggs once again. The taste is beyond description and it's lovely to see yolks as bright as the sun once more.


Her first few eggs were laid in the middle of the run, but since then we have treated the girls to an Eglu cube. Unlike with the nest box in their original Eglu, she is nesting in the larger Eglu Cube nest box.
One of the best things about eglus is that they hold a significant proportion of their value. We sold our 8 year old pink Eglu for £257! Which pays for 3/5 of the cube we bought second hand from Cotswold Chickens near Stratford Upon Avon. We have a spare green Eglu aswell which we will sell and hopefully that will pay off the outlay we made on the cube. After our honeymoon we will probably add another 4 or so hens to our flock, we were going to add them sooner but a few things popped up and I didn't want to introduce new hens and then leave them under the supervision of an inexperienced owner whilst we enjoy the Parisian sunshine!

Thanks for reading, enjoy the summer weather before the storms set in tomorrow.

Martin

How To Save Your Roses From Aphids - by Dorset Finca on June 10, 2015 07:40

Judging by the number of buds on my plants, this year looks like it will be terrific for roses.  I know I write about the aphid situation almost yearly, but as I have already had lots of people asking me about this topic, I thought that it was worthwhile posting again. This tried and tested […]

The post How To Save Your Roses From Aphids appeared first on The Dorset Finca.

Sunday 7th June 2015

Brinks is ready to go out on the town. Fanfare please…. !! To celebrate this momentous occasion, I have been busily researching collars and leads in time for our debut into the big, wide world. Up until now, we have been practising with a very lightweight puppy collar and lead. They have both stood up to […]

The post Beautiful Handmade Accessories For Your Dog appeared first on The Dorset Finca.

Friday 5th June 2015

We have been waiting for what seems like eternity for this moment.
I was just about to start making our dinner, a Friday treat of Sausage, chips and beans but beforehand I thought I would go and give the chooks their evening corn.
There it was bang in the middle of the run... our first egg at Paddingon House, laid courtesy of Clarabelle.


It's a fantastic example of a speckled egg isn't it, with those lovely dark brown spots covering it all over. Looks like we will be having sausage, EGG, chips and beans now!
Have a lovely weekend everyone, we'll be doing the egg dance through til Monday!
Martin 

Wednesday 3rd June 2015

I never thought that I would be a Kindle lover. Our bookshelves, stuffed with old favourites, are pretty much my favourite thing in the entire house. I couldn’t imagine moving away from a physical book with its distinctive smell and turned down page corners, reminding me of the places I paused the last time I read it. […]

The post Colour Your Kindle With A Crochet Cover appeared first on The Dorset Finca.

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