Mrs Ps birthday!

I hope you are in fine fettle and not allowing your self to become too disheartened or indeed totally confused by what we are and are not allowed to do, with how many people, in what order, under cover or alfresco, with one trouser leg rolled up and ones left index finger in your right ear whilst facing East! If anyone does work it out before I split the atom later today I would be most grateful to know! Madness to one side its been a big week in our household as all four of the loons returned to school which three days in appears to have been a huge success although Charlie did feel the need to inform me as I left this morning that it might be rather a “long weekend” as “we already have 4 VERY tired Children”. That has clearly prompted me to ensure that I am now smoking 400 chicken breasts on Saturday so sadly won’t be there to don my riot gear and prevent the inevitable blood shed until at least half of them are in bed on Saturday evening! Before you think it, yes I am indeed a coward and this missive is exactly how Mrs P will discover that she is flying solo on Saturday!

My view throughout the last 6 months and will be going forward is that all we can do is take a deep breath and smile and do our best to help others to follow suit. My pathetic way of doing this is rather unsurprisingly food! So, if you would like anything from a September Box or a hot smoked side of salmon to a selection of pates and some goats cheese to give yourself a gastronomic lift or to send to a chum that maybe feeling a little glum then just go to or call me in the office on 01458 250875 and we will get whatever you fancy delivered to any door of your choosing. You have up until midday tomorrow to ensure things arrive in time for the weekend.

We are living in uncertain times and it would appear that the water is about to get a bit choppy again but feel safe in the knowledge that everything will feel like a mill pond compared to the rolling seas I am about to find myself adrift in once Mrs P reads this and realises that I intend to spend at least half of the weekend in a different postcode to four exhausted children a mad dog and a soon to be physically violent wife!

My very best regards to you,


Losing track of time, fantastic smoked salmon & weekly ramble

We have the most glorious morning here in Somerset the air is almost crisp, the sky is blue as blue and the view from my desk here at the smokery is quite simply good for the soul.

It has been a brilliantly busy week here with so many folk placing lovely orders for this long weekend.  I have to confess to feeling more than a tad weary recently which is rather embarrassing as my amazing crew here have definitely been putting in longer shifts than me.

There are two major concerns that my weariness causes.  The first is that I yawn a lot and Amber whose throne is two meters away from mine literally looks murderously in my direction as she claims that I have the longest and noisiest yawns in the world and they appear to have the same effect on her as nails scraping down a blackboard have on so many others!  The other issue is a new one which has only presented itself in the last couple of mornings.  As is our way at home on a weekend morning I make tea and hot chocs and the loons congregate in our room.  The conversations that take place are never very normal as you can probably imagine but yesterday as I phased in and out Stan gave my face a little slap and said “Daddy we are waiting!” when I enquired “what for?” there was a collective sigh from all five of them and Stan said, completely seriously, “we want to know which of the Teletubbies would you like to throw off the Empire State Building and what you think would happen to them when they landed”.  I’m putting this most bizarre of questions down to my exhaustion as if I don’t then I fear I must follow the path of my own childhood and have them all psychologically tested!

One of the products that has been so popular this week is the whole side of sliced smoked salmon we have on offer for £35 delivered.  Due to its popularity we have had to step up production a bit and hence I have been unloading and reloading the kilns this morning.  I very nearly dropped a whole rack just now and as I turned to slide a rack out of the smoker daughter number 1 – Nancy was suddenly there brandishing her phone.  To say I jumped would be a slight understatement but the product of her labour is here for you to see.  I apologise for anyone who is offended by my Harlequin rugby jersey but it would be quite nice if they could beat Northampton today.  The photo does also capture the amazing colour of the salmon as a finished product quite nicely too I thought.  They remain on offer until close of play tomorrow as does the August Box.  It is also the last day and a half to get free delivery on any orders you place.  The offer finishes at midnight tomorrow so whatever you would like to order for whenever you would like it delivered, be it a birthday present in October or a dinner party in January if you place the order by tomorrow the delivery will be free.

Finally, I thought I ought to share something that happened this week that not only made me feel old as it was a clear example of the passage of time but also has made me fear for my future quite significantly.  On Thursday evening having decided we would have ‘Fajita Friday’ a day early (please don’t ask) I gained permission to pop to the local and meet a mate of mine called Ben for a quick catch up and a pint.  All was fine and as I left the house I suggested I would be back by 7pm at the latest.  One of the many issues that these mad times has caused is that one-way systems and queuing times in order to get ones libations have significantly added to the time it takes to have a pint (that is my story and I’m sticking to it).   So, having had to do this twice, and have a significant chat with Ben about the price of rugby international tickets at Twickenham in 1989 (it was £3 by the way) it was just after 7.15pm and fast approaching 7.30pm by the time I returned.  Now, I am not a complete fool so possibly expected a slight scolding and a moderately stern glare from Mrs P.  What I was not prepared for was that Mrs P was fine and the tirade that appeared to be bouncing off the kitchen walls was in fact pouring out of my 14-year-old daughter Nancy.  When I heard the phrase “7 o’clock should mean 7 o’clock and not 7.30!”  I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry.  Supper was not quite ready and feeling a bit peckish I got myself a bag of crisps which before I could open were ripped from my hand by the same child with the words “you will spoil your supper if you eat those now”.  I knew then it was indeed time to cry as on the basis that she is only 14 and Edith who was cheering from the side-lines is 11, I am in really deep trouble for the next eight years at least!

I hope you manage to enjoy the elongated weekend and remember teaching children to tell the time can have serious consequences on ones social life in the future!

My very, very best regards,