Archive | May, 2013

Spring break in Barcelona

29 May

We’ve just returned from a four day break in Barcelona. What a lovely city. I’ll let the photos show you what we mean.




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Many hands make light work

24 May

Come lunchtime, everyone pitches in to prepare the meal. This is our kitchen; full of volunteers!


The hen house is built and in the garden

24 May

The mistake our volunteer, Elisa, made was to build the hen house in the ground floor of the factory without realising it wouldn’t be easy to move it into the garden!

She had made a lovely job, using entirely recycled wood and an old plastic tarpaulin. She’d followed the instructions in a book about owning chickens that Trish had lent her.

When the hen house was finished, I decided to see how we could get it into the garden. So today Franck, Sasha, Elisa and I lifted it onto our trailer and moved it out of the ground floor of the factory, down the main drive and then down the small drive leading to the garden. We then tilted it over onto the wall where it rested, 20 feet above the garden level whilst we attached ropes to it.

20130524-163507.jpg We then carefully lowered it over the side!


20130524-163624.jpg Finally we lifted it into position!

20130524-163655.jpg All of this was achieved with great team spirit! Franck is French and speaks some English; Sasha is French and speaks English and German; Elisa is German and speaks English and some French. We managed to communicate quite well despite this!

We’ve ordered the new wash basin for our bathroom

11 May

We’ve just ordered the washbasin for our toilet from the DIY shed in Carcassonne called Weldom. It was on special offer – washbasin, cupboard and mirror all for €109. It’s such a good bargain that they’ve run out of stock.

20130511-140227.jpg. The taps and sink plug are extra and we will chose those when we go to collect the unit.

Then we will call Phil our plumber to fit it and the new toilet which he’s purchased for us.

Phil was here on Tuesday to sort out the showers in our apartment. The drains had been smelling a bit! He found that neither shower had U-bends. The French system is to fit a water trap in the outlet pipe, accessible from the shower (so it can be cleaned). One shower had none and the other had a hole in it! No wonder they whiffed!

20130511-152640.jpg Everything smells sweet now!

The hard work in the veg garden is beginning to pay off

5 May

Trish has worked very hard to establish the veg garden from what was a bit of a wilderness. With help from Sylvain, Alexa, Richard and Louise, she’s now got potatoes, Jerusalem artichokes and tomatoes planted.


In the greenhouse are carrots, parsnips, onions, beet root and turnips; these are waiting to be planted out. Also growing in the greenhouse are squash, lettuce, parsley and marjoram.

We also have mint and garlic growing wild!


We have also established a composting area.