Alpaca & Muscovy

Monthly Archives: December 2014

Happy New Year 2015 to all our family, friends, clients and everyone

Happy New Year 2015 – Give someone you don’t know a kiss tonight!


So at last it is the eve of the New Year.

And a busy day it has been too. Breaking ice in the morning, followed by toenail trimming and ADE followed by hay rack filling. Sounds like a good recipe for a new type of cocktail?

The Walking boys have been busy this week with events booked for Christmas Pressies and the New Year is getting pretty interesting with Alpaca Walk bookings already.

We do love sharing our passion for Alpaca with our visitors.

 So onwards to those dreaded New Year resolutions

I decided that as no one else kept to the “going to stop drinking wine for New Year” resolution, I was not going to even make it one of mine!

I decided that my extra fat keeps me warm and helps the carrying of 20kg twice a day – so I was not going to even attempt the “I will go to the gym and lose weight for New Year” resolution either. Not that this was ever likely to happen!

I decided that this year my Resolution was to work harder – simples.

Whilst all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy (or Jill a dull girl) if I was not going to be starving myself dieting or resisting the vino – then play would happen naturally so “to work harder” that was the only possible Resolution left to make!

Enjoy the humour behind that one gals!

Right then, the renowned look back on 2014 – enjoy…












help for heroes newbury stand










have a good one everybody!

Frozen, Mr Blue Sky and cold as ice!

I am showing my age with those sentences I know but here are some shots taken recently:



mr Blue sky…

mr blue sky

tucking in on a frosty day…



tucking in

cold as ice…

spirit in the river


the inevitable New Year Resolutions to follow shortly…

amazing cria fleeces and alpaca cria weaning pending and the biggest mug!

Been having a rummage amongst some fleeces whilst doing ADE jabs today and really wished I had been a showing person and entered that BAS National Show next year…

dec cria fleece

My hubby likes a big cuppa as we all do here. His usual mug takes a pint of tea but in Dobbies this year my Mum and I found one even bigger…

biggest mug

with flower and garden written on it we were actually not quite sure but if not a mug then why the handle?

and meantime onwards and upwards in the frost for poovering…


Cria weaning is next on the agenda then halter training and our first cria is due VERY early this year.

2014 Boxing Day surprise revelation

Well did you have a fab time? We met loads of new faces yesterday and crazy busy. For the first time I did Christmas lunch at lunchtime instead of dinner time. Farming does not allow time out so once organised, back out I went. Everyone else totally satiated and replete, had the afternoon off. hubby much better thanks but alas unable to assist until better. three sons did well though and all hay out.

With heavy rains due here today, much Field Shelter work was required and extra water out. Amazing how you can have solid frost and frozen pipes at 6 am and running water and rain a few hours later.

So did you guess what the nuclear warhead is? no?

Can you see it now?



A fire pit

pictured here complete with its maker!

This gives heat and cooks. Our BBQ after 15 good years gave up earlier this summer so what a great idea.

hubby loved it.  Now we can burn all that spare wood and get free heat and toasted marshmallows for our visitors!!

handmade from ANDREW FINDLAY of the Grainstore in Gloucestershire.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year 2015 to all our friends, clients and country!

well, it is Christmas Eve and we are finally ready. Bit of a hectic week as usual and hubby having operation today made life unusually hectic too.

Now, before we wish all our friends, clients and everyone the very best  – can you guess what I bought hubby for Christmas?

nuclear warhead

no – not a nuclear warhead… but all will be revealed soonest


Merry Christmas and Happy New Year 2015


Nguni boots – all I want for Christmas -thank you Dad

Nguni boots? well there is a tale to be told there. Regular readers will recall that we had a stand this year at Newbury Show for two days selling our Alpaca garments and launching the new Alpaca products.

Well, opposite us diagonally was a fab stand selling Nguni boots. I did not manage to have time to visit to buy some and to be frank, it slipped my mind thereafter.

Imagine my surprise when in the Gun Shop in Cirencester a short while later, I met up with Sarah and Simon the owners of the Company!

They loved their visit to Kensmyth Stud and my Dad bought me a pair of Nguni boots for Christmas – thanks Dad!

Really warm and whacky too. see for yourself…

nguni boots 2


nguni boots 1

nguni boots 3

nguni web

Alpaca husbandry in the wet

Time and Tide wait for no man… and I have not bought a stitch of food for the big day yet – that’s farming for you!

Busy busy and with the fields so wet, the entire herd has had several nights in already (in separate groups) to give their feet a chance to harden. Wet wet consistently and wet on the back is not a good recipe when temperatures fall or the wind gets up. We hit some gusts of 70 miles per hour a few days ago and I could barely walk up the hill with buckets of feed it was that blowy. Great for drying out my hair and the fleeces though!

ADE vitamin jabs to the entire herd is our policy and it is very time consuming. Each Alpaca is thoroughly checked, body scored then weighed before injecting. Toenails are also checked or trimmed at this point too. Why do I bodyscore and then weight too? I like to know I am correct in my assessments when bodyscoring without weighing … by checking my assessment against a weighing machine I know how accurate I am. After 7 years of breeding Alpaca, the odd cria or nursing mother who is a little aged can still keep you on your toes you know!

Weaning is now top of the list for some as the cria have grown on so well.

Cirencester Corn Hall Exchange Marketing Alpaca

Well, Christmas is galloping my way and I am not sure I am going to catch it! Too many wet early mornings and very late check rounds and I succumbed to the dreaded cough lurgy cold for a while. Once clear – no need to share everything – I was off selling again at the Corn Hall Exchange in the Historic Town of Cirencester. Very pretty rooms and packing late at night on Friday for a 7 am unload makes it a long day. How exciting though – it only takes me an hour to set up the stall now. Far less to take down as I sold so much but more on that later… meantime the “set up”

another room, another hall…

cornhall setting up one

and where do we start…

cornhall setting up two

and then we are on our way to making a stand look nice…

cornhall setting up three

and folk are setting up round me too as it starts to take shape…

cornhall setting up four

and it is all coming together on two tables

cornhall setting up five

and the “front interest” takes shape…

cornhall setting up sixa


and finally a little bit of Christmas sparkle and we have a Kensmyth Alpaca stand!

cornhall setting up six

Christmas tree at Kensmyth

Christmas is sort of happening ahead of me this year and I am just about keeping up!

I managed to get the tree outside and it looks fab – well I think so.

christmas tree


and a fantastic day at Cirencester Corn Hall today – back soonest