Thursday, 20 July 2017

Chomping Around the Bit

I bought a nylon bridle for Blue Belle last autumn.


She's had it on a few times, only for a short while to get her used to it. Usually she tries to eat some grass as we walk along and she can't quite work out how to eat it - but this time she finally worked it out and she was back to consumption of grass at her usual rate.





Blue Belle was very happy to help clean up the yard.


I think she looks really smart in her bridle, even if it fits her and no more. She's that awkward size between a Mini and Standard which makes buying for her difficult.


(Maybe I could teach one of the lambs to sit on her back? Nah, I don't think either party would appreciate that.)

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

While the Rain Falls

Dad had cut this field for silage the night before and so I made us packed lunches and we set off early to get the field baled before the weather turned.




Jess was my helper for the morning.


Around and around the field my dad drove, while I drew the bales up the hill and put them in a neat row for easy wrapping later.


We knew there was to be a chance of showers, but shortly after 11 o'clock the heavens opened and we were forced to stop. I had planned to eat my sandwich (a ploughman's, naturally) outside, sitting on the top of the hill while Jess ran around tried to steal it. Instead we were stuck in the tractor cab, but I made a point of driving up the hill anyway, even if the view was a bit damp.




The rain disappeared as quickly as it had come and we were back to work. Jess did some posing...


...and found a massive stick to carry around!


Dad finishing the field off.


Dad went home to swap tractors, and I went home to swap dogs because Jess had been in the tractor for a few hours and needed a break. Pip came with me to finish the job.


Dad arrived with the wrapper shortly after.


The weather had dried up but now the sky was hazy.



Pip was cool as a cucumber with the tractor approaching behind her.




I tipped the bales up once they were wrapped.


And we returned to this old gate because I had only just noticed on that day how it could make a good location.


Hopefully next time we'll be making hay while the sun shines!

Sunday, 16 July 2017

The Castlewellan Show 2017

Yesterday was the day of the Castlewellan Show. There had been very heavy rain the night before, and the sky was grey, but that didn't stop a huge crowd from turning out. We saw the cattle first.












Someone was going home with a lot of rosettes!






We caught a glimpse of a pig class being judged.


Teddy was with us, wearing his blue bandana.


Donkeys and carts were being judged.




Leaving the Donkeys, we went into the Home Industries tent to see how my photos got on in the competition. To my delight, Audrey's photo came second in the Portrait - Colour category!


This photo of Prudence came third in the Up With The Larks category.


In the Golden Moment category, this precious photo of our much missed friends Nobby and Ben came highly commended.


In the Portrait - Black & White category, however, my luck ran out and Pip's photo wasn't placed.


I really loved this winning cake - isn't it genius?


People had the chance to help name this adorable puppy. All this attention is tiring.


Over to the sheep next (my favourite part, no surprises there). These ones had some impressive horns.



Teddy had a relax next to them.


The Charollais sheep were being judged.


As always there were sheep of all shapes and sizes.







Teddy making friends.


One Zwartbles ewe in particular was very friendly.





We said goodbye to Teddy's new friend and went to look at even more sheep.







Teddy had more admirers.


Some nice Kerry Hills.



A nice Charollais.


And a massive Hampshire Down tip.


We caught a glimpse of some showjumping.


I was very excited to meet the absolutely adorable Cora!


And a fun Sprollie called Milo!


Where the horse trailers are parked affords them a great view of the showground. This horse was enjoying it.


A Hackney pony warming up for their class.


Haylage customer Rosie, her family and her gorgeous horse.



Young horses were being judged too.





At 3 o'clock the dogs were gathering outside the ring.



Toni gave Teddy some pre-competition cuddles.


Teddy in the ring, being a good boy.


The dogs strutted their stuff in several classes.



The winner of Smallest Dog wanted to eat its prize!


Teddy left the ring unplaced in Most Appealing Pet, but with a second place rosette for Best Behaved Dog - so proud!


After all that excitement Toni and I ordered something to eat. What would you like, Teddy?


It was a fantastic day, but there was one more surprise in store - Teddy was on the cover of the programme book!


It was a marvellous day, if a bit tiring! I wonder what next year will have in store...