We have always been a little 'old fashioned' at Mantel Farm, and Christmas to us is all about spending time with family and friends. Now the boys have grown up there is less time spent making decorations for the tree, but we still try to make a few gifts as well as home-made mince pies and other festive food. The same decorations made when the boys were younger still get carefully unpacked and hung on the tree and paper chains hung from the ceiling. Our decorations would certainly not win an award for being stylish or co-ordinated, but they do hold special memories for a special time of year.
As a family we have always tried to avoid the cheap 'throw-away' presents, wrappings and food in the shops at this time of year, but a trip to town this week made us realise just how far we all have to go to end our plastic and throw-away society. We are trying hard in our own shop to cut down on the packaging and unnecessary waste wherever possible, we are reviewing all our suppliers to see where they make or source their products and how they package and distribute them, but we are finding we don't always have an ethical option - as a small business it is hard to insist on the immediate changes we would like. We will not give up though and continue to do what we can, we have already swapped our own packaging from plastic to paper wherever possible (thankfully cardboard boxes have always been the thing for our chickens - plastic shrink wrap just never worked!?!). Our big ask for you all is that you please work with us, don't be tempted by saving those pennies from shopping online, and with each purchase consider our planet as well as your local business.
We start the year with our popular country wine and honey mead courses in January - these workshops make a perfect present, a fun, hands-on morning or afternoon spent learning about these wines and mixing the ingredients to take home a demijohn of wine or mead in the making - simply watch it bubbling away until its ready to bottle and drink.
Our Christmas Offer:
We avoided the Black Friday and Cyber Monday madness! but during December we are giving away a £10 gift voucher for every course booked using code NLDEC
Join us for free Mince Pies, Coffee, Tea or Wine on our last Shop Friday of the year.
Both Jason and Josh will be in the shop to answer any beekeeping and chicken-keeping questions, and we are offering free Mince Pies and Drinks to wish you a Merry Christmas and say thank you for your custom curing 2019.
Join us on this fun, practical session making your own wine from a basic wine kit. This course is aimed at anyone new to home winemaking, showing how easy and economical it is to make your own wine from a fruit kit - no waiting months or years to try your produce, this wine is delicious and ready to drink in just a couple of weeks! You will get to take home a demijohn of wine and all the equipment needed to make it again. Don't forget code NLDEC to receive your £10 gift voucher
Sat 25th January 1.30 - 4.30pm
Find out about this traditional honey wine, what it is and sample the different types you can make. Join us for a fun, practical session making your own mead and take home a demijohn of mead to share with friends and family, you will also get to keep all the equipment needed to continue this hobby at home and don't forget code NLDEC to receive your £10 gift voucher
Checking your hives and monitoring for Parasitic Mite Syndrome
As I mentioned last month there is not much we can do with the bees this month either, apart from checking they have not been blown over and the entrances are clear, and making sure your equipment is all clean for next year. My bees are still flying when it is warm and dry....
Sustainable Logs, Kindling and Fuel blocks...
Don't forget to stock up on fuel for your fire during the Christmas period; we have available: flaming firewood, kiln dried logs, kindling, firelighters and Hot Max fuel blocks, all sustainably sourced from the UK.
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