Once again it was a very windy day. Looking out of the kitchen window, I saw a flash of something bluey-green in one of the trees near the pond. Initially I thought it was one of the numbered cards which the chap in charge of the local hunt attaches to marker posts. These posts are carefully-spaced to maximize the chances of the hunters shooting each other. But it wasn’t a piece of card. No, it was our resident kingfisher. No luck for him today; the pond is still frozen over!

Following the LSS-blowing-a-gasket-with-the-aged-FIL yesterday, she has decided to plug in the unused freezer at the other house. Up until now, she has been going to the aged FIL’s house every other day, taking fresh food. However, the aged FIL’s attitude has been having such an adverse affect on her health, and causing such stress, that from now on she will only visit the other house once a week. Sundays will be the day she sorts out his sundry medicines for the week ahead, and stocks the freezer with ready-meals type food. There is a microwave oven in the house – we gave it to the in-laws as a present several years ago. This new-fangled invention was treated with deep mistrust; and it has only been used since the carers started feeding the aged FIL.

The blackberry wine has been bottled (24 bottles). All these brews are being stored upstairs in the barn. As I insulated the roof last year, it’s the best spot we have for keeping wine etc. We can’t have a wine cellar here due to the high water table.

Whilst I was putting the wine upstairs, the hens forced their way through a small gap in the end of the portable fencing, and were scratching away happily underneath the chestnut tree near the well. I managed to chivvy them back into their pen without too much fuss. I think they’re trying to make a point. “Look, we’ve eaten everything in sight. We want more stuff to eat. And the grass is greener on the other side.”

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