All week we have been waking up to brilliant sunshine. The mornings have been chilly, but by 11am it has been lovely and warm. This morning was different...it was cloudy and not so cold. That is called Murphys law as I needed to do washing this morning and not sure that it would get dry today!
Another busy week here has passed. Now we are starting to panic about Christmas as we haven't even started preparing. We have a friend visiting so really we need to get a shiftt on and get ourselves organised.
Back to last week.
Monday Kev went out with our friend the shepherd collecting wood. He has a trailer and between the two of them the collect enough to fill the trailer and deliver it, one week to Modesto's house and the next here. I spent Monday and Tuesday cleaning the kitchen down ready for the pig delivery. After spending the previous week cooking for the fayre it is really important to make sure the kitchen is spotless, to then go on and sort out raw meat! 
The pig arrived Wednesday afternoon and a bonus was we were given the intestines with it, already cleaned and sorted!!!!! This means I won't have to order any from the internet for a few months and I can make loads of sausages, black pudding and chorizo. Wednesday afternoon Kev managed to get the pig cut up into sections and a few joints boned and rolled.
Thursday he finished off removing the bones and rolling the joints. We stuffed some of the belly joints before he rolled them, so they will be roasted in the oven with home made sage and onion stuffing. One part of the belly was cut up into 200g slices and put into bags. This will be used when I make the pork pies. The rest of the belly was salted, along with the hocks and also a couple of sections of the back. I used salt, brown sugar and rosemary for the cure.

This will be our bacon for the next few months. It takes about 2 weeks (depending on the weather) to cure the bacon, but we should have enough to last us a while.

Our bacon hanging on the terrace...we use pillow cases to keep the bugs off!
 I also managed to make the plain pork sausages and sausage meat and about 5 kg of Lincolnshire sausages. 
Friday Kev was out all day and I set about using the offal and head! (Sounds disgusting but actually there is a lot of meat on the head!) The head was placed in a large pan, with salt, pepper and mixed herbs, lots of water and boiled for about 4 hours. This ensures all the meat falls off of the bones. Next we strip the meat and place it in a bowl and cover with the liquid that it was cooked in. Place in the fridge to cool and the next morning it has all set and your left with brawn.
I used the liver and heart to make a haclet meatloaf . I made 6, 5 to go in the freezer and one for our dinner Friday night. It is a mixture of offal and pork meat with lots of herbs and seasoning. We love it and if you have any left over it is just as good cold in sandwiches. 
A friend had asked me to have a go at making pork, apple and oat sausages. I made about 2 1/2 kg and sent some round for them to try. I am waiting to hear feedback on them but when we tried them we thought they were lovely.

Friday evening we saw Cranberry and her little poults roosting for the first time outside of the turkey run. I took a short video just to show you what we see.  http://youtu.be/Q6M8yeHchjU 
Saturday we made chorizo. We made some to hang and cure and some to go in the freezer for cooking with. Whilst being covered in chorizo mixture I heard all the animals going mad. This normally means there is something new around that scares them. I looked outside and saw 2 people walking along the track towards the house. I went outside and they introduced themselves. They live in one of the houses nearby...about 1.5 km away...and had seen our page on facebook, so they thought they would come and see what we were up to. I spent a good 45 minutes showing them around and explaining what we had done and our plans for the future.  They seemed very impressed.

Chorizo hanging on the terrace...it will be moved into the battery cupboard when it has stopped dripping.
Saturday afternoon we moved our chicks into the big run. We have had to move their little run into the big run so that all the chickens can get used to each other without the fighting. When we let the bigger chickens out onto the land we then let the little ones out into the run. The first day they wouldn't come out at all, but now they are out as soon as you take the top off the run.

There they are basking in the sunshine and you can see the little run at the back.
After moving the chickens we needed to collect some sticks as our baskets were getting low. We took 4 baskets with us and within 20 mins were carrying them back full. We use the sticks for starting the fires and would be struggling without them but luckily for us they are every where, so we just go and collect them.

After feeding the animals and watering the plants, we set about making the black pudding. This is a really messy job...and by the time we had made a couple of kilos, both of us and the kitchen were covered in blood. By the time we had finished it was about 9pm and we were both very tired.
Sunday I minced up the rest of the shoulder and put it into 1kg bags to go in the freezer. This will be used for stuffings, scotch eggs, sausage rolls and what every else we fancy to eat! Kev used Sunday afternoon to cut up some wood to stack in the wood stores. It seems like we have a lot but it gets used very quickly now that the nights are getting colder.

One of our wood stores filling up!

We like this time of year as even though we are very busy during the day, most nights we get to sit and relax in front of the roaring fire with a glass or 2 of vino. We sit and chat about the day and what we will do the next. This time allows us to think about what happens next and to plan new jobs. By the time February comes our to do list will have trebled in size and we will be ready to start all the new projects with gusto!