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Pork, Family, Welsh Cakes, Friends and a Hamper

Up early Friday morning to drive to the farmer's market at Lampeter, we had been warned by our friend Neil that 'market' was probably stretching it a bit and he was right - a total of three stalls on the high street! Fortunately we only had one interest and that was a stall run by a couple (Stuart and Angela Mason) who raise, butcher and sell meat from their herd of woolly pigs (Mangalitza's). We had been following the couple's page on Facebook for months and were tantalised by pictures of scrummy bacon, sausages, loins and chops. We had a great long chat with them - Stuart was a chef in a previous life and Angela had spent many years in the 'rat race', commuting into London every day. Their original plan was to raise poultry but then discovered the fabulous woollies which suit their small holding (on the side of a mountain) very well. They do have some rare breed goats and had some hilarious and cautionary tales to tell - build those fences high! Infected by their enthusiasm we departed very happy customers with a bag full of sausages, bacon, a ham hock, stuffed pork loin, bacon jam and treats for the dogs.

Next stop was Neil and Danni's smallholding for a tip top lunch, a quick lesson in fencing and came away with yet more plant gifts! You guys spoil us - hopefully you'll see the fruits of your tuition when you're back in Wales!

Friday's dinner was fab - a fry up of mangalitza bacon and sausages, topped off with eggs from Neil's chickens, accompanied by Dave's home baked baps.. I opened a can of beans :)

The Bank Holiday brought more visitors to Fronrhydd - first arrival was our lovely Bex who arrived armed with 'farm clothes'. As Bex has no fear of heights we quickly put her to work - up the ladder to help her Dad revamp the poly tunnel. Dave and I are not good with heights.. something I think we are going to have to get over!

Sunday morning brought rain (boo) so Dave and Bex set about making Welsh cakes - this required method testing through batches in order to achieve the required standard (which is pretty high with these two). Once the method had been approved a further batch for me was produced (I hate 'dead flies' so plain ones for me).

And so we were ready for the next visitors - friends (well, family really) Nick and Donna. By strange and happy coincidence Nick's Mum has recently moved to Narbeth which is only a 30 minute drive from us - hurrah! A tour of the house and land (frequently punctuated with "Is that yours?", "Yes Donna") and then back to the cosy kitchen for Welsh cakes and a good old catch up. Tallie and Dex adore these two - Tallie spent a very happy weekend ensconced on their sofa when we were house hunting and Donna has the same mad mentality as Dex so they are very much partners in crime.

More gifts - this time a hamper of 'luxury' emergency goodies - it was duly raided on Monday after a productive day on the veg plot - the bath soak did wonders for my aching back - cheers guys!

And so back to 'work' - Tuesday has dawned bright and, more importantly, sans wind.. we shall attempt to put the poly on the tunnel!

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