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March started out as a very sad month for me because two of my chickens died.

Just for a while, I was very confused as they had been young, healthy birds, but then I noticed that my stag turkey, a very large bird, (the chickens and turkeys share the orchard) was paying the chickens rather too much attention - naughty boy!

Thankfully, the problem was quickly sorted out with a bit of additional fencing to separate the birds. The stag wasn't too happy about it, but it stopped those shennigans in a heartbeat!

Great excitement here a few weeks back when one of my hen turkeys laid her very first egg. Well, to be truthful, I may have been a tad more excited than Frank as, unlike me, he wasn't dancing around the kitchen, singing at the top of his voice. It is such a good thing we do not have any neighbours!

The turkey, along with her sisters, has laid a few more eggs since then, and following advice from more knowledgeable people, I removed the eggs and took them to my chum Luke, Click Here and these are now tucked away in his incubators. The eggs which have been laid since then have been collected, and as it looks as if my Buff Orpington is broody, I am hopeful that she will hatch them. I will let you know how things progress. Frank asked me what I am going to do with the turkey poults if all the eggs hatch, but I do not have an answer to that question........ yet!

I dragged Frank off to the St. Austell poultry auction at the end of last month. Now, I thought I was remarkably restrained as I only bought a couple of birds, but Frank just shook his head in despair! Wouldn't you think that he would be used to me after all these years?

Dee, from English Parish Registers, Click Here emailed to let me know that she is getting a coop and a couple of chickens. Isn't that great? Dee, you will adore the chickens and the eggs will be wonderful. Chickens are such busy creatures. I have never figured out what they do all day, but they are very busy doing it!

We are slowly turning into a collection of chicken keepers here as Alex Bielecki emailed to let me know he keeps chickens too. When you get the time, watching chickens go about their daily tasks is very therapeutic, isn't it, Alex?

Angela and Sue, I am so delighted you like my newsletters. As I am rather gabby and unable to chat to you personally, the newsletter is the next best thing, don't you agree? Frank says watching me write the newsletter is really odd as I sit here having a one sided conversation with the computer. Yes, I confess that I do chat away to the computer as I write, and although some people may find this rather strange, it seems perfectly normal to me!

Were you busy making pancakes on Shrove Tuesday? I was and I confess that my diet went 'out of the window' because I adore them drenched with lemon juice and just a light sprinkling of sugar. So fattening, but decadently delicious and so totally irresistible.

Wasn't the weather glorious in March? We spent quite a few days removing rubbish from the old barn and either recycling or burning it. Isn't it amazing how much clutter you can gather over the years? The old barn has been flattened and the rubble dumped in a new soakaway. The manufacture and erection of the new timber barn is well under way, but I still have a job believing that after all the months of waiting, it is finally going to happen. I have already warned Frank that as soon as the barn has been completed, as I missed having orphan lambs this year, I shall be off to Truro Cattle Market to try and buy a couple of calves.

Almost every weekend, when I can spare the time in between other chores, I am in the field margins, waging a losing battle against brambles, ivy and stinging nettles. No matter how many of these darned weeds I dig up and destroy, there are always plenty more ready to sprout. It really can be quite soul destroying. Yes, I do use some of the nettles for fertilizer, but we have so many here, that I could start producing the stuff commercially and still not clear all of the nettles.

It is strange to hear the differing viewpoints of town and countryfolk. Battling with the brambles which seem to grow at an alarming rate, my arms, despite wearing a jacket, are covered in scratches. A friend of mine who lives in Falmouth, on seeing all the scratches was quite worried and asked what I had been up to. A farmer friend took one look, nodded sagely and said, "clearing field margins?"

Right! We have quite a lot of new products and suppliers to get through this month, so get yourself a cuppa, a bite to eat (no nibbles for me as I ate too many pancakes!) and come join me as we take a look at this fantastic list of items.

 
 
 

New Products & Suppliers

Countryside Books have another title available, 'The English Village Explained.'

Malcolm, from the Gwent Family History Society, must have been 'cracking the whip' over the volunteers to produce this pile of CDs.

Linda, from Yorkshire Parish Registers, has a new transcription ready for you. Gosh, these transcribers work hard, don't they?

Mike, from the Powys Family History Society, sent me details of three new CDs.

Mary, from the Glamorgan Family History Society, told me that the society has now released Maesteg Cemetery Burial Records on CD.

Four more transcriptions from Jen, of Leicestershire Parish Registers. Jeepers! That lass works really hard on her transcriptions.

Another new book from the Chardstock Historical Record Group.

Six more CDs from Helen, of Scottish Monumental Inscriptions.

Back in February, at the WDYTYA event, I was chatting to Louise, of the National Institute for Genealogical Studies. I was so impressed by the courses she offers, that I invited Louise to take a stand at the Parish Chest.

Yvonne, from Docklands Ancestors, has a great new compilation CD on offer. Do take a peek.

This month, Graham, of JiGraH Resources, has two map CDs for you.

Central Scotland Family History Society has just released 'Stirling Burgesses from 1600-1902' on CD.

Alan, from the Dorset Family History Society, sent me details of new items they have available.

The Worcestershire Parish Records Society has come up with a cracking idea. To save money, before buying the actual CD, for just one pound, you can purchase a Parish Register Surname Summary to make sure your ancestor is listed. Isn't that a great idea?

Another superb selection of CDs, including some parish registers, from Angela and Guy of Anguline Research Archives.

 
 
 
   
 
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