Hello and welcome to The Compost Bin. I'm Compostwoman and I live in Herefordshire with Compostman and teenage daughter Compostgirl. We have just under 4 acres of land which contains a woodland, polytunnel, small orchard, garden and veg plot. We grow our own organic produce and make lots of cider, wine, jam and chutney. We also make a lot of compost. We share our lives with Chickens, Cats, Guinea Pigs and assorted wildlife. We try our best to live a more self reliant lifestyle, growing and making and fixing and mending and re-using and re-cycling stuff, if we can.
I used to be a Research Scientist, but that was many years ago. I now work as a freelance environmental educator/writer/lecturer/Forest School practitioner and community artist; I also spend a lot of time volunteering as a Master Composter, Master Gardener, Love Food Hate Waste cookery demonstrator and hens@home mentor. Doing all this allows me the privilege of helping people have fun outdoors and live more enjoyable and sustainable lives.
This blog is a record of what I have been up to from day to day. I might write about something I have done in the garden, an article I have written for a magazine, the latest batch of chutney I have made, a training course I have attended or "just" my daily routine of cats, chickens, compost and mud.
I hope you find something to interest you in The Compost Bin, remember there are lots of "How to" guides about all sorts of stuff and remember to click on the photos to make them full size!
Tuesday, 6 November 2012
Slowly getting back into our routine
I also got a 15 mm crochet hook, as I am in the process of turning a lot of old cotton T shirts into yarn to crochet a rug and needed a larger hook to do so. I have spent the last four weeks doing a lot more knitting, crochet and other fabric related crafts and have enjoyed this, although I didn't like the fact that I had *no choice* but to practice them. I have improved a lot, though!
We had an £8 off £80 spend voucher for the Co-Op, which expired today so after a bit of discussion we decided we would spend some extra money to save some. I had done our normal household shop last week in the Co Op - and got 10 % off that time - so really did not need much everyday household stuff - but we decided to spend on stockpile items to get the maximum discount this time. We bought extra stuff - packs of tins of cat meat ( to be stockpiled in the garage) - some alcohol (to be stored away for Yule and for gifts) and reduced free range pork joints (which when cut up to make lovely chops which went straight into the freezer). This plus some normal household sundries came to £82, so I was pleased to get 10% discount on stuff we would have bought at some point soon.
With the colder weather coming up I like to have at least four weeks worth of food, loo rolls, etc for us, the cats, the guinea pigs and the hens. We have previously been frozen in here for nearly 2 weeks so I am not taking any chances! And oh how useful it has been recently ( with us being virtually housebound) to have a good stockpile of provisions!
We then went for a treat - an early (noon) lunch at a local pub in Much Marcle - they do very good lunches sourced from local ingredients and they do a lunchtime deal which is really good value. We have not been out together for a very long time so we really enjoyed our treat.
We came home and as it was warm and sunny we decided to do some work outside on various gentle tasks - both of us found we were as weak as kittens after less than an hour of very light work - it is amazing how rapidly one can lose fitness from an illness or injury!
But at least we got some wood moved into the log store and some compost moved into a raised bed and I managed to clean out a whole hen house by myself ( for the first time in 5 weeks!)
When Compostgirl came home on the bus from school at 4 pm that was the signal to retire to make tea, light the woodburner, sit down and have a chat and a rest.
Compostgirl and I enjoyed watching "Wizzards vs Aliens" on CBBC - a Dr Who ish programme from Russell T Davies and co. And after food and homework for her we watched "The Simpsons" on C4 plus 1 (as usual) - something our family have enjoyed together for several years.
Compostman and I later ate some homemade soup and bread for supper (as we had eaten a main meal at lunchtime) and watched "Only Connect" on BBC 4 - a quiz show we love and which I would like to appear on.
Slowly we seem to be getting back into our normal routine of work in the day and family life in the evening. Which feels good. Fingers crossed we can keep up the progress!