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Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Picture This! - A Wet And Windy Afternoon in January

On The Farm - Maria A Smith


Looking at these images its hard to believe I took them earlier today, between showers of rain and blustery gusts of wind! I can assure you I did though.

Both images were grab shots, with my phone camera as I walked through the farmyard to the shop, to purchase some greek yogurt and a lemon. Over the last year I've totally changed my diet, since being diagnosed with adult onset asthma, which is triggered by the preservatives in food and drink. Its been a gruelling journey, weeding out what makes me wheeze, I'm sensitive to sulphites, to my complete surprise. Things that I used to eat, and drink freely, now make me feel very ill indeed.

Magnificent  - Maria A Smith


I scrutinise every food packet, every can, and every bottle, and its worth the hassle, because I'm mostly in good health these days, unless I get caught out by hidden ingredients, with disguised names.

Changing over to organic is an ongoing journey I'm really quite enjoying. It can be extra work though, as the vegetables are straight from the field, and aren't clean and orderly as you find them in most supermarkets. Yes, its more expensive too, but I buy less, and plates aren't piled high anymore, portions are better controlled, and the upside is, I'm discovering lots of farm shops, and delicatessens in my area. I'm exploring...

I'm going to have a go at growing some of my own vegetables this year too, so if you've any tips on quick easy growing vegetables, do leave me a comment. Or if you've recently gone organic I'd love to hear your take on it?

27 comments:

  1. They are some fine looking bantams.

    I grow lots of my own veg. I suggest planting potatoes to start with, especially if you're using ground that hasn't been dug recently. Even if you make a mistake or two with potatoes you're likely to get a crop of some kind and cultivating them helps get the soil in good condition for more demaning crops.

    Most young veg plants are a waste of money, but tomatoes are worthwhile. They can be grown in growbags or pots as long as you water them quite often.

    One big advantage of growing your own is that you can try lots of varieties which aren't usually available in the shops.

    btw I have a gardening blog. http://patsysplot.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Potatoes are on my list then! I'll start popping over to your blog to see what you're up to over there. Thank you.

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  2. Lovely photos. Since my holiday in Turkey I love chickens,never had anything to do with them before.It must be hard work changing all your diet but if it makes you feel healthier then it's worth it. Happy new year.

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    1. Hi Anne, I think when you are told you have to do it, you just get on with it! I'm also warming to chickens, although I'm not ready to keep any myself...

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  3. Funny how that can kick in, suddenly, isn't it? I'm allergic to something too. The doctors and I are trying to figure out what the hell it is, but so far no good. :( Shame because I regularly feel awwwwwwful! I've even been transferred to Immunology (again) so they can do more tests. -_- I hate hospitals.

    Ho hum.

    Glad you've pinpointed your issue; it must be nice to know what to avoid to feel good. ^_^

    Speak soon and have a good week! x

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    1. Argh! I feel for you, its very difficult when you don't know whats making you feel so ill. It did take a while to pinpoint the problems I have, and I sympathise with you having to visit the hospital.

      Hope you find the cause, and the cure soon!

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  4. Good idea. I help on an allotment and growing veg for first time. Just grow what you like to eat. Green beans, broad beans, eternal spinach, salad leaves onions (from sets) have proved easier than I thought. I have also gleaned loads of information and advice from Sue Garrett's blog Green Lane Allotments.

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    1. Hello, I fancy growing salad leaves, and green beans, as well as some form of spinach, and courgettes would be good too. I'll take a look at that blog too. Thank you.

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  5. I'm sure that a lot of these processed foods are really bad for all of us. I try not to eat too many processed items but fail miserably when I'm tired or busy. Good luck with your vegetable plot. We've had great success with runner and French beans but things like broccoli and cabbage get munched by bugs because we don't spray.

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    1. Hi Ros,
      I shan't be spraying either, and I am a little concerned about the slugs and snails in my garden. Not sure if I'll manage to win the battle, but I'll maybe grow a few things in pots as well.

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  6. Can't help with gardening tips - my last year's home grown crop was the grand sum of 2 tomatoes, but I wish you well in your organic quest. British farms are really producing some top quality food so I hope these will sustain you. The more we buy from these sources, the better the prices! Hope your health improves rapidly. Love the pictures.

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    1. Thank you Lindsay, The chickens looked so splendid and happy wandering around the yard.

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  7. They are lovely pictures. Those hens look so content and well looked after x

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    1. I agree! The farmer and his wife work like trojans, yet they are always happy and smiling. They have an on site bakery, and a butchery, and last year they opened an organic tea room too! They have also recently acquired a fabulous peacock, I'm hoping to get a good shot of him some day soon...

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  8. Hello Maria
    Thank you for dropping in at my blog. You have a lovely blog with interesting pictures. I always loved chickens and live in a small town where we can have 3 chickens in our yard. I toy with the idea of getting a couple but our winters can be so harsh and they would have to have a warm house.

    It seem like the longer we live, the more annoying physical ailments catch us with us. It all seems to stem from the wrong eating habits. I've eaten organic for over half my life and I know what you mean by the cost. I try to grow vegetables too but I just moved last summer so my gardening was simply flowers. I do have a small green house where I can start my seeds in the early spring. From your photos, it looks like your weather is a lot milder than ours. You will love gardening.

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  9. Sounds great. We are also turning over to more natural foods and less processed garbage. I wish you luck on planting your garden. It will be a very rewarding process.

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    1. Hello, yes I am hoping so...I will give it a shot this year and see how things pan out. I am sure there will be a few hiccups along the way, but it will be fun!

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  10. Not sure any of my home grown veg would be much of a success, but we were given a welcome gift voucher this Christmas for our lovely farm shop. Rx

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    1. Yum! What a fabulous idea...hope you get to try some good food!

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  11. Great pic, I wish I had a local farm shop to walk too :)

    Shame about the asthma, not nice to have to watch what you eat all the time :( if it keeps you feeling better though it's worth it.

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    1. It's too far to walk, about six miles...and six back! I tend to go on the way to somewhere else. :-)

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  12. I tried growing tomatoes a few years back but failed miserably - didn't nip off the bits I was supposed to nip off or something! LOL! I do better with herbs as I find them very low maintenance!

    Good luck with your new very strict diet. Sulphites are found in wine, right?! :-( But nevermind - you get to meet these gorgeous happy lovely chickens! Yay!

    Wishing you a most fabulous New Year! Take care
    x

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    1. Yes, I may need advice with the tomatoes. :-)

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  13. Great pics again Maria. I've grown organic tomatoes for a long time and also had an allotment, so can help. No pesticides or rubbish. If you know what's gone into the food and soil, its so much easier. The smell and taste of freshly picked produce is a special experience. Sometimes its a battle against nature, but that's all part of the game.

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  14. Hi Keith, well I'll definitely be coming to you then regarding the tomatoes as I am not sure about which bits I'll need to nip out...I did once try growing some, and I think they failed due to me not actually getting to grips with that procedure. I also agree the smell of fresh vegetables is quite unique! As is the taste of eating something that you have grown yourself...

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  15. Hi Maria - glad to have found your blog! Very interesting about sulphites - I have a problem with white wine (prefer red) and white fish, both of which I believe can contain this (affects my sinuses) . I'm sure there must be other foods to blame too!

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    1. Yes, white wine is full of sulphites, and when I drink it, my nose becomes stuffy, I get a bright red rash over my face and chest, then I get a tingling feeling in my fingers, and lips, after that, I struggle with my breathing. Its frightening!

      However, I have recently found a company that sells sulphite free wines, they are amazing, taste delicious, and offer a next day delivery. But the best thing of all is that you feel no bad after effects the next day like you do with wines that are full of additives!

      If you want the details, let me know. :-)

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