Category Archives: Christmas

best blog of the day award

Blog Of The Day Awards Winner

thankyou whoever nominated me best blog of the day. best blog of the day and in the local paper in the same week, watch this space.

Recycling christmas trees

We ended up keeping the fake tree this year and will put it on freecycle in a few days or in December, then go back to having a real tree again. Normally I would recycle the tree and not like many people who just throw it in the bin or by the side of the road. I strikes me as strange how a thing that can be treated with such respect one day and then thoughtlessly discarded the next.

Anyway this is how I use mine, this is assuming that you have at least a garden or an allotment plot. If you have neither I would suggest taking it to your local household recycling centre. Most of the eight million trees bought each Christmas will be thrown away after December, generating over 12,000 tonnes of additional rubbish. That’s nearly six times the weight of the London Eye. If you know somebody who does not no how to get rid of it offer to take theirs for them I’m sure they will be pleased.

Firstly I take the tree outdoors, next take an axe or saw and remove all the branches, keep all but the very smallest, dump the rest on the compost. These branches will become protection for peas and beans. They also will last you for a few years, so you end up with a collection.

Then place all the branches on a piece of tarp or in an old compost bag. If you do use a bag keep it in a dry place. Over time all the needles will fall off and you are left with a good mulch that will keep the slugs at bay, well some of them.

The main trunk has many uses, if you have a woodburning stove then it’s fuel. I take off about 12 inches from the thick end to make a mallet, which is great for non- delicate tasks. The rest of the trunk I use for climbing plants.

In my opinion this is the best way to recycle your tree, rather than it just being put through a shredder to make simple mulch. If I can aquire a tree I’ll take photos of the process, although I don’t want to ask too many people or I’ll end up with forty trees by the back door.

resolutions for 2007

I never really make resolutions but I like to think about what phsyical things I want to achieve for the new year, so here goes

Finish work in house tile floor skirting etc

Finish the shed/workshop which will be used to store tools bikes and homebrew, it’s an ideal place as it faces north and is always in the shade. It is also a better place for a water butt as our garden is on a slope so having the butt at the top will mean I will be able to connect a hose pipe.

Build a rain water catchment system, collecting water from the roof into a storage tank to be used to flush the downstairs toilet and possibly the washing machine, if I can find a cheap filter. This would be our biggest step towards self-sufficiency.

Reapply to the council to try and purchase the garden behind mine.

Build a wall at the front of the house, as it was taken down when we had the extention build to allow skips and bricks etc to be delivered. At the moment it is just layed to gravel and a waste of space, I want it to be another part of our permaculture garden, growing veg and bigger herbs like bay. I want people to see from the street that a front garden can be just as productive as a back garden.

I think thats enough for now, there are many things that I want to do but actions are better than words so I’ll keep it simple for now and get these out of the way first, partly because they were the things that I said I would get done this year. This is the reason I don’t make resolutions as when I don’t stick to them I have guilt as well as the fact that I have failed. Not getting something finished can be bad enough without feeling guilty about it.

Anyway happy new year, and if you do make resolutions don’t feel bad when you don’t stick to them, you can always make them again next year.

Barter economy

My friends father shoots rabbits locally and will often bring me round a fresh one from time to time. There will be a knock at the door and a guy with a smile on his face holding up a plastic bag, it always makes me laugh, there needs to be no words. However due to the recent cider being bottled I was able to offer payment, one bottle one rabbit. He normally gives it to me for nothing but I wanted to offer something this time.

I just hope that it will work when the game keeper my wife knows brings us some pheasants, I think it will be harder to convince him.

Christmas eve

The house was full, family, friends, was I toasting the festive season no I was upstairs washing bottles in the bath and bottling up the cider, now thats commitment. Merry Christmas to you all.
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I ended up with 30 bottles but I’m sure I should have had more, thats why you should never leave a barrel unattended when drunk friends are round.