Posts Tagged ‘christmas’

Having fun at Christmas

Happy yuletide and all that!

Did you have a good day? Did Santa bring you your heart’s desire? Or were you too naughty…?!

I bet you didn’t have as much fun as my lot:

Snipe - 25 December 2008

Snipe - 25 December 2008

Snipe, Mac and Midge - 25 December 2008

Snipe, Mac and Midge - 25 December 2008

I received lots of lovely presents which shall have their own post tomorrow when things return back to normal (well, as normal as they ever can when you live in Cardiff but keep pigs…)

Enjoy the rest of the holiday!

The little things that aren’t worth blogging about on their own

  • I have moved the chickens to a new patch of grass. They’re not happy as they can’t hang out under the old apple tree any longer.
  • Some bastard has swapped all the frost for mud. This exchange sucks.
  • Tia and Scrumpy dug up an old saw in their enclosure. I’ve told them to find something very old and then all our money problems will be over!
  • The weaners have settled in well and I think mum’s enjoying having pigs back again.
  • Don’t say anything in case she finds out, but Midge is currently eating a bowl of Tesco Value dog biscuits instead of her usual branded ones. Is this the breakthrough I’ve been hoping for? Probably not…
  • There’s a few (non-Christmas) things that I’ve forgotten to buy but I don’t know if I can be bothered to brave the shops this side of Christmas. It’s bad enough that I work in one…
  • Having not watched a single second of the X Factor, I’m amazed at how good the winner’s voice is (no idea what her name is). I wish Terry Wogan and Aled Jones had done better though. Still, that’s one hell of a lot of money raised for Children in Need 🙂
  • Cookie and Squeak have settled in well and their new owners (and their kids) sound completely enchanted by the pair. Hurrah!
  • We have a Christmas tree!
Oh Christmas tree, oh Christmas tree...

Oh Christmas tree, oh Christmas tree...

Too quiet

It was very quiet up at the farm when I arrived yesterday morning. Tia and Scrumpy greeted me with their usual grunts and calls for breakfast, as did Bailey and Brini but the silence from the weaners’ enclosure was eerie.

On Thursday, I delivered Cookie and Squeak to their new home where they’re going to end up as the most loved and pampered pet pigs in Wales and took the rest up to Mum’s, where they will spend the rest of the winter. She thinks she’s got a buyer for a pair of gilts and the rest will go into the freezer, having grown quite nicely in the 5 acre field that they’ll have all to themselves. Apart from Fergie, who will return to us when the weather warms up in the spring as she now belongs to B!

She was meant to be The Big Surprise on Christmas Day but I inadvertently sent a text to B which was intended for Jennie, which revealed the grand plan and was too direct to leave any wriggle room.

Modern technology has a lot to answer for!

B was thrilled and can’t wait to get her back in the spring – and it’s not as though I was going to wrap her up and put her under the tree, but I can’t believe I did that!!

But the field is still too quiet and it is going to take a while to get used to it 😦

Piggie Christmas cards!

Jennie and her brood hand-made some truly fantastic Christmas cards for B and I and you can see the photos she took of them over at her blog.

Cheeky decorated a card with pig silhouettes and a Christmas tree, made from wrapping paper, Handsome stitched the outline of a pig, and Jennie printed out a photo of Bailey and Brini and then made mini Santa hats and stuck them on her heads!

Truly brilliant 😀

If I get the chance, I’ll take some photos myself and post them here.

“How could you take a man’s life to save $20 on a TV?”

The darker side of Christmas has been illustrated by the tragic news that on Black Friday, traditionally the first day of the American Christmas shopping season, a man was trampled to death by shoppers looking for a good deal.

A worker at the Long Island branch of Wal-Mart was trampled to death on Black Friday when the doors opened at 5am to let shoppers in. They burst through the doors, sending employees and other members of the public flying, paying no heed as they trampled over them in their desperate rush to get their hands on the weekend-only deals.

When the madness ended, 34-year-old Jdimytai Damour was dead and four shoppers, including a woman eight months pregnant, were injured.

“He was bum-rushed by 200 people,” said Wal-Mart worker Jimmy Overby, 43.

“They took the doors off the hinges. He was trampled and killed in front of me.

“They took me down, too … I didn’t know if I was going to live through it. I literally had to fight people off my back,” Overby said.

But did they stop, did humanity seep back into their consciousness?


Individual members of the public stopped to help the injured but the mob carried on regardless.

Witness Kimberly Cribbs said shoppers acted like “savages.”

“When they were saying they had to leave, that an employee got killed, people were yelling, ‘I’ve been on line since Friday morning!'” Cribbs said. “They kept shopping.”

Doesn’t it make you sick?

Thanks to Cathy at Maternal Gardens for alerting me to this story. As she says,

Why? Was it really worth the 20, 30, 40% off? That man, who was trampled to death by greedy, gluttonous, ignorant, rude, pathetic holiday shoppers looking for a “deal”, will not get to celebrate the holiday with his family and I pray he didn’t have children.

The holidays are coming, the holidays are coming…

Read more about Black Friday here.

The wish list

It’s nearly that time of year again – though I work in retail so it’s been “that time” for many weeks now and I’m getting The Question: “what do you want for Christmas this year?”. Helpfully*, it’s my birthday just three weeks after Christmas, so this list will do for both.

B has asked me to put a list together but keeps rolling her eyes whenever I say I want practical presents, ones I can put to good use. This includes:

  • home-made Christmas goodies of the edible variety (yes, that’s a hint!)
  • the updated version of John Seymour’s Complete Book of Self-Sufficiency
  • Andy Case’s book, Starting with Pigs: A Beginners Guide
  • any other smallholder books that look interesting
  • pig food
  • bales of straw or hay
  • a new pair of wellies (UK size 6, black or green, no decorations)
  • a new pair of waterproof trousers (small, dark colour, not the ones that rustle every time you breathe)
  • a new waterproof winter farm coat (so I can, from time to time, put one of them in the washing machine! – any dark colour, must be robust enough to survive the brambles and other thorny plants, pockets are good, lots of pockets are better but it needs to have diagonal pockets that you can put your hands in, not the straight ones, if you see what I mean)
  • a waterproof winter non-farm coat (I’ve got one suitable for spring/autumn but there’s no point wearing it in winter – needs to be black, the same issue with the pockets!)
  • a new hat (black, small, little or no decoration, definitely no bobbles etc, maybe one with the flappy ear things for very cold days?)
  • a small, robust and energy efficient radio for the shipping container where I keep the animal food and straw (not one that runs off the mains as the mains ain’t connected!)
  • rubber skips for feeding the pigs
  • buckets with lids for storing stuff like excess corn in
  • I am utterly convinced that such a thing does not exist, but I’d love a wind-up kettle for energy free hot water for coffee (if it doesn’t exist, I hereby declare the idea to be my own and wait for someone to build it so we can share the profits…)

As I said, anything practical.

And yes, having read back through the list, I can see why my nearest and dearest dread buying stuff for me.

Love you all 😀

* Yes, I’m being sarcastic.

A PC Christmas-cancelling Christian-hating leftist loony Labour Scrooge

Only a couple of days ago, I was reading something really interesting (blog post? news article?) about the myths and facts of councils who have “banned” Christmas but typically forgot to bookmark it. A shame, as it would have tied in nicely with Antonia’s blog post about how Oxford City Council have joined the club:

Contrary to popular belief, Oxford city council has *not* cancelled Christmas, even if shoddy Oxford Mail reporting (swiftly copied by the rest of the media) implies that it has.

Oh dear, oh dear. You killjoys!