Don’t care what they say, cider will always be part of my 5 a day!

Recent news reports suggest that fruit juice is not as healthy as previously believed and that some fizzy drinks may be better for you. Well personally I think if we all stick to “natural” ingredients and simple sugars in moderation, this has to be healthier than artificial sweeteners and flavourings. A bit like real cider, made from 100% apples, has to be much better for you than ciders with 35% apples with 65% sweeteners, water, colours, flavourings etc.. (not that we’re biased!). Keep it simple, keep it healthy.

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Jim enjoys his “5 a day”

Had a bTB test reading here on Friday and although we all suffered a high degree of stress, we got the all clear. After breathing a sigh of relief, we sat down to a nice cup of tea (with real sugar) only to find that the postman had delivered some tracer test requests (bought in calves to be tested due to their previous farm going down with bTB), so still more testing to do later this year.

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Some of our cattle

We’ve finished our courses here for 2014, with cider making being our booziest yet and we begin our lambing courses again in February 2015. Well done to all who attended them we have met some fantastic people and made new friends, its amazing how many people com back on more and more courses. I always think we might be enjoying this diversification a bit too much! Not sure what the animals think…. I’m heading to London again this month to talk at the Farm Innovation Show, please take pity if you see me wandering lost in the big city.

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Wonder what she’s thinking…..

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Raddling the tups

Our tups have been working hard and the raddles (marks on the ewe’s bums from paint on tup’s chest) indicate that we are in for a busy lambing season from February until April. Why not join us? Additional March dates will be on the website this week.

On a final note, sometimes its good to not fit in with the crowd. So hold your head up high and be proud as you walk on by…..

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Hold your head up high and walk on by.

Take care,

Kate x

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Our first blog! March 2012

Welcome to our first blog. Kate’s Country School is based here, on our family run, 300 acre, traditional mixed farm in beautiful Monmouthshire, South Wales. A farmstead has been here since the 12th century and we have many lovely, historic, listed buildings.

We have just finished our lambing courses of 2012. Lambing began for us in January and is now coming to an end having had over 1000 lambs born here this year. Sleepless nights but we wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s not a job, it really is a very special way of life. Our next courses are on sheep husbandry and a basic introduction to livestock in May.

We have also had calves born and due to the lovely mild weather they are outside frolicking in the fields with their Mums. We house our cattle over the winter months but all are now enjoying the green grass again. I did however hear a whisper of the possibility of snow over Easter?

Noisy fieldfares gathering, Red Kites circling above, otters in the brook and meadow saffron in our wildflower meadows. we are blessed with wildlife here. Bees have been extremely busy in this sunny weather. We have our own hives but also numerous wild bees on the farm. Solitary bees love our stone walls! Although we have been enjoying the glorious weather, we (and the wildlife) really could do with a spot of rain. Having no mains and relying on spring water.

Being completely new to this, I will keep this first blog short. I will however endeavor to learn more and continue with our blogs. Will be back soon.

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