FARMING MATTERS: Happy New Year to you all

Farmer feeding his cattle at Christmas
Farmer feeding his cattle at Christmas

Christmas and New Year on the farm usually means lots of lovely family gatherings and lots of naughty food.

Even our farm cats celebrate Christmas as we take their little Christmas stocking over to the dairy and present them with treats. Most years our black and white cat, who is the friendliest cat on earth, pops in to see us on Christmas Eve and we invite her into the house to admire the tree and tinsel.

She stays for quite a while and one year watched a bit of James Bond on the television before deciding she’d had enough and went to the back door to be let out.

This year we had lots of family and friends either staying or popping in over the festive season.

Our guests always vary in their reaction to being on a farm around Christmas, or at any time of year. Some people enjoy the chance to wander around the buildings and check out the animals, and bring their wellies and extra layers of clothing with them especially for the purpose. Others prefer to stay in the warmth of the house and sit by the log fire, or help me wash up all the dirty dishes!

Of course the animals have to be fed every day, whether it’s Chrsitmas or New Year, Easter or a birthday. But my husband tries to prepare ahead for special times, to ensure he spends as much time as possible with us as a family.

And so he does extra millings ahead of time and makes sure the feeding can be done as quickly as possible.

May I take this opportunity to wish all readers a very healthy and Happy New Year, and to thank everyone who has taken the time to write to me over the past year. I appreciate your emails and letters very much.