Posts Tagged ‘Bed and Breakfast’

The real thing

April 30, 2019

Chose some unsuspecting Dutch guests as guinea pigs for our new Outlander breakfast the other day. It was a hit apparently!

Outlander breakfast
The ‘Nettle Rolls’ were in fact spinach rolls because it was too early in the season for the nettles. However, the nettles are now growing vigorously, so today I did some harvesting and made our first batch of THE REAL THING! So, here’s a pictorial guide as to how they were made…

Essential tools! (plus wellies!)

Essential ingredients – just the topmost leaves.

Blanch for 2-3 mins, drain, refresh, wring dry and chop.

Roll prepared dough into 12 inch square, brush with butter, cover with nettles, finely grated lemon rind and chopped mixed nuts. Roll into a sausage shape.

Cut the roll into 12 rounds. Place on parchment in tray, cover with cling film and allow to rise somewhere warm until doubled in size. Brush with melted butter then bake at 180 C for about 20 mins. 

Et voila!


We have some unsuspecting American guests for breakfast tomorrow, so who knows…

P.S. It’s a sweet dough, very similar to Chelsea buns


The Outlander effect

March 24, 2019

Many of our Bed and Breakfasts guests are fans of the Outlander series, quite a few of them visiting film location sites during their Scottish holiday. In fact, Diana Gabaldon, the author of the series, recently received a major award from the Scottish Tourist Board for her significant contribution to Scottish Tourism. So I thought it would be fun to add an Outlander breakfast option to our menu!




The recipe is taken from  the ‘Outlander Kitchen’, compiled by Theresa Carle-Sanders. This early in the year, there’s not a nettle to be found, so I substituted spinach but come the spring, (PLEASE come spring!), I shall be out there with my rubber gloves, harvesting the abundant nettle crop around Garybuie. They will certainly be a very locally produced breakfast ingredient!


It will be interesting to see if the new breakfast will be as successful as the series! If not then never mind, at least the egg coddlers make a pretty collection!


Shortening days

September 11, 2014

We’re heading towards the end of our B and B season, looking forward to out-of-season activities and heading south at some point to catch up with our family.


At the height of summer we have 22 hours of daylight but now, setting the breakfast tables pretty much coincides with sunrise. Yesterday it was at 6.45 a.m. and here was The View at that time.


At the end of the day, The View was bathed in the soft light of the sunset.


Good morning!

August 2, 2014

Three shots to illustrate part of the summer routine on a summer’s morning…

the view



Enjoy your day!

Hopefully a rescue

June 4, 2014

Well, try as we might, the musco-teer has abandoned her nest to become the third mother of the eight Muscovy ducklings.

extra mum

Of course this all had to happen just as guests were coming down for breakfast. Kevin goes out to work earlier on a Wednesday, so it was action stations with preparations for a rescue. Whilst I continued with breakfasts, Kevin brought out the trusty incubator and plugged it in. After breakfast, I collected the abandoned eggs and popped them in there. Will the rescue be successful? Fingers crossed.

Open for business

April 2, 2014


the view

We are now officially open for business and the weather at the moment is certainly very holiday-like! No guests yet though but our first booking is on Saturday. It’s unusual to get people just turning up on the doorstep at this time of year. But we’re ready if anyone does! I can’t wait to serve breakfast in the new conservatory…


I have to confess that I’ve developed a bit of an obsession with the windows! Everything is so shiny and new that I can’t abide a blemish! I’m not a lover of cleaning windows but last week I gave them all a good wash ‘n’ polish and then can you believe it, an over-night shower deposited Saharan sand all over them!!! Winds are coming from the south-east currently, picking up sand on their way. As long as the winds don’t become gale force as I certainly don’t want any accompanying camels! Anyway, they are all shiny once more, so clean rain only please Mother Nature!

Because the weather has been so lovely, we had our first we trip out on the bike this year on Sunday. I’m surprised that there’s actually anything left of the machine after all Kevin’s over-wintering polishing! Anyway, we travelled around the north end of the island, a lovely circular route. Although it was sunny, it was quite hazy. A day for nature’s muted palette. This is Duntulm at the northerly point of Skye…


We didn’t see any visitors but we did encounter an unusual pedestrian!


Other good weather news is that after recovering the polytunnel, I finally got around to getting it ship-shape for spring. No more Chicken-Spa, much to their annoyance!


Spuds are chitting, there are lettuce and brassica seedlings coming on nicely and some garlic on the go.


And yet more spring news: after assistance throughout her ‘confinement’ BB the Silkie is currently hatching her eggs! Hopefully, I shall have some cute pictures for you tomorrow! Also, it’s with a huge sigh of relief to report that Hamie is now much better. She’s not back to her tree-climbing self yet but she’s eating well and breathing easier. Fingers crossed.


End of another season

September 30, 2013

Last breakfast! After cooking over 300 breakfasts, Garybuie is now officially closed to visitors for this season.






Garybuie now sits quietly in the glen surrounded by nothing but birdsong and gossiping ducks and hens. No more breakfast chatter, no more early morning laughter. Time to reflect on the past six months, remembering conversations, funny incidents and the never-ending laundry! Time to think of new ideas for next season and time to enjoy the sunset undisturbed.
There’s time to tend to the birds at a more leisurely pace, having longer chats with some of the youngsters.



All in all, it’s been a great season, albeit a hard one with so many one-night stays. But once again we’ve met some lovely people, shared family tales and general grumbles! Many of our guests have enjoyed meeting the residents of Garybuie, some of them newly arrived in the world. But now we’re looking forward to recharging our batteries, heading south soon to visit our lovely grandchildren and for me, spending more time painting animals.

Wash-day blues – and purples!

August 2, 2013

Ours isn’t a flowery garden. It consists mainly of trees, shrubs and vegetables, although we do have an abundance of spring bulbs. One particular flower which I love is a rich, purple clematis which climbs up the pole of my washing line.

Clematis 1

For over a month now, our bed and breakfast bookings have been mainly one night stays, many guests catching the ferry to the Outer Hebrides the following morning and many more seemingly on a whistle-stop tour of the Highlands. Whatever the reason for this unusual turn of events, it amounts to a lot of laundry I can tell you! So thankfully I have my cheerful purple blooms to chase away that Groundhog Day  feeling when I’m hanging out sheets, towels and tablecloths – again!

clematis 2


clematis 3

Summertime schedule

June 26, 2012

Any followers of Garybuie’s blog know that most posts involve our daily routine which revolves around the residents on our little patch of Skye. Some of those residents are permanent, some temporary. Some even reside in the ground itself; vegetables. Of course in the summertime, there’s an  explosion in the number of temporary residents; chickens, ducks, vegetables and equally important – and just as enjoyable – is the arrival of visitors to our bed and breakfast.

A few weeks ago, when I was giving my usual summertime excuses for not posting regularly, one frequent visitor to Garybuie’s blog, Cecilia, a whirling dervish of a lady out there on her farm in Illinois, left a comment which included the following: “…and i am fascinated by your B and B. Maybe you could blog for us how that works!…” Well, here goes!

The day begins between 6.15 and 6.30 a.m., hopefully making myself look presentable enough for guests rather than hens. The first task is to feed the cats. We serve breakfast in the conservatory so tables need to be set…

…followed by a retreat into the kitchen for food preparation as well as grabbing some breakfast myself. At the moment we have four chicken coops containing birds of varying ages, one brooder housing our two-week-old chicks and three duck houses. Kevin’s first job is to let all the birds out to enjoy the new day (We lock them all away at night as foxes are prevalent in the glen) Meanwhile, it’s usually time to wish our guests good morning, take orders and start cooking!

After breakfast, it’s the fun part of the morning; chatting with our guests, offering ‘Tourist Information’ if they need it, perhaps checking the weather forecast or making a ferry reservation and very often answering questions about why we chose this life! If anyone is interested, we introduce them to the Garybuie residents or show them around the garden.

When our guests have departed, the behind-the-scenes work begins with washing the dishes. For most days of the week though, I do have a very eco-friendly dish-washer at my disposal. He’s called Kevin!



Then there’s the cleaning of the rooms…

…and the laundry…


Depending on what time our visitors leave, the behind-the-scenes stuff can take until almost lunch time. Time for lunch then – and the chance to read a couple of my favourite blogs! Slotted between the BTS work and up until 4 p.m., a selection from the following are undertaken: conventional work (Kevin only), regular housework, house maintenance, cleaning out any bird-houses which need it, tending the veg plots, planting new veg, shopping, grass and hedge cutting, accounts.

4p.m. is the time when things tend to go pear-shaped! New guests can arrive from this time onwards. It’s animal feeding/watering time and there, waiting in the wings is the ironing! Out of season, this is my usual blog-time, so you can see my problem!


After cooking our evening meal, we manage to eat at around 8p.m. and the last job of the day is to lock all the birds away, which is at around 10.30p.m. at the moment because it’s still broad daylight at that time and although the hens take themselves off to bed in a civilized manner, the ducks loiter, like teenagers on a street corner, no one wanting to look un-cool by going in to bed early! But still, daylight or not, we certainly need our bed so off they jolly well go!

So overall, I think that we’re almost as dervish-ish as Cecilia! Summertime is definitely a time of hard work and long days but we wouldn’t have it any other way. Our efforts on the animal and vegetable front are rewarded by delicious, natural and untainted food. And our efforts with the Bed and Breakfast mean that we have the pleasure of meeting people from all over the world. Some people return to us and feel almost like part of the family. Two such guests stayed with us last week; father and daughter, Joachim and Amelie, from Germany who came here three years ago and were enchanted enough by the Isle of Skye – and Garybuie presumably! – to make them wish to return for a longer stay. (Although Amelie was VERY fond of haggis, so maybe that was the attraction!) Of course should any of our guests stay for several nights, there’s considerably less work and the possibility of taking one of our three-hour-holidays in an afternoon!


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