Stuck duck, hatching ducks and baby ducks (warning cuteness alert) 

Monday: Into April we go and a lovely start it is today, if all mornings could be like this it would feel like utopia 😀 Got the feeding done then put on a couple of loads of washing as it promises to be a good drying day. Took some early morning photos and gave the dogs a brush as they are beginning to moult and look ‘fluffy’, all before 9am. Moved a few barrows of manure onto the fruit cage.
Went out to Fairytale Farm with Sam and Mia and decided I would like some guinea pigs lol Watch this space! 

Tuesday: Bad mood warning ⚠️ not sure why but everything was annoying me this morning, slow hose filling the duck pen, chooks getting under my feet, must be hormones 😝
Anyhow plodding on is the answer so this morning I have moved the quail to the outside house, they are been off heat for a few days now so should be fine besides the ducklings are due to hatch, cleaned out the brooder cage ready for when they do, fingers crossed. There are five female quail for definite, one definite male and the other four I think are male but as one is a lovely lavender colour I’m not sure about it yet. Watered the poly tunnel and checked the seedlings in the greenhouse which didn’t need any today, hope the sun comes out later to help them along a bit. Had Mia and when she is asleep I peruse Pinterest for ideas, looking at rhubarb, asparagus and slow cooker recipes today. 

I bid on some vintage trouser hangers on eBay which arrived today, they are the perfect thing for drying herbs, or anything you need to hang really, I might have a go at juzzing them up 

Wednesday: The quail survived the night in the outdoor run so it’s all good 😀 Had a busy morning cutting rhubarb, asparagus, leeks and herbs for sale in the little shed, love it when I can start putting fresh produce out. I also cut some big bunches of lovage, sage and mint to hang and dry for use during the winter months or using in syrups, sugars etc. 

We have a rat stealing eggs in the pen with the new chickens who have started laying already, I saw two eaten eggs and fresh rat poo, evidence enough! I need to sort that out quickly with some bait. 
Made some bread, real fruit jelly and a cake with fresh strawberries from the freezer and I had a go a some quick cream cheese, which is Greek yoghurt mixed with salt, drained in muslin overnight, why bother I hear you ask, well for one, because I can and two I’m hoping it tastes much better, you can add herbs or flavourings to it and it’s handy to know how just in case you ever need some 😀 The cured eggs got a BIG thumbs up from trial tasters, taking a meal right up to a ’10’ apparently so that’s an exciting thing, though I have not tried it yet lol. 

Thursday: Lovely sunny morning, not cold, just right. Got the animals fed then did some sorting out of the muck pile which is colossal at the minute, needs some rain dare I say, to bed it down a bit. Cleaned out the ducks and noticed one of them was stuck in the pond, well usually it’s a pond, it’s fed by the guttering from the stable block, but as it hasn’t rained for ages it’s now a muddy sludge puddle. Looking at the situation I knew this was not going to end well for one of us! I took a step towards the duck hoping it would move, nope, it appeared quite stuck in the mud, so I took another step, nope, by the time I had got close enough it decided to move, wings flapping, feet going and that caused a splattering of thick stinky mud to be flung backwards straight at me 😝 now I wouldn’t have minded quite so much except that I had put on clean clothes this morning 😩anyhow, said duck is now free and more than a little bit dirty, it will take it a while to clean itself up, as for me, thank goodness for washing machines 😜
Ducklings in the hatcher have started pipping.

Friday: Lovely morning if a little cold, I feel crap this morning after a night of feeling unwell, swollen nasal passage and throat, temperature, hurts to swallow, pants I was looking forward to a productive day and now I feel like I can just about drag myself round, good dose of paracetamol might help a bit. 
The first duckling is out 😀 and it’s dark, not yellow as I was expecting. He was on his own for around 24 hours so we called him Billy and gave him a teddy to cuddle up to. 

We are going away overnight tomorrow so I will be leaving Shelley in charge of overseeing the hatch.

Saturday: I was a bit worried about the timing of the hatch and leaving someone else in charge but I needn’t have been, we had a successful hatch of eight ducklings in total all brown in colour so plenty of Khaki Campbell in them I think. Shelley enjoyed looking after them and watching them hatch, even nurturing one that was looking a bit lethargic until it was up on its feet. 
Sunday: Returned home, delighted to see the ducklings doing so well, fabulous day, after a spot of lunch in the garden we took Josh down to the ford for a paddle, water was very cold (apparently lol) 


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