I’ve just been looking and it’s been about two months since the last blog, so hi to everyone. The absolute last post I did also seems to have disappeared off the blog for some reason, but never mind, it doesn’t really matter. I’ve had a bit of a writer’s block again, so as the title says, I’m writing til I write.
So, since the last smallholding type jobbo – the ducks have been outside for ages now, they’re massive and all grown up looking, there’s one drake now and 3 girls, which will be fine for now. One of the girls got eaten by a predator so I’ve moved the rest to a more secure run now.
The growing has been going really well in general. The tomato plants are massive but are actually really late in producing tomatoes, they’ve come now, but aren’t red yet. There’s nothing wrong with them and they’re growing well, they’re just late. I can only put it down to the fact that it was really quite cold here right up to July time. Same with the cucumbers, they’re starting to grow, but only just starting. The gherkins are nearly ready for pickling.
We’ve had tons of celery, we had a good amount of new potatoes which have since been eaten and also put into celery soup which I’ve portioned and frozen. We’ve now got green beans, swedes, spring onions and lettuce growing in that bed. The maincrop potatoes should be ready soon and the sprouts and leeks will be ready in the winter/spring I would think. I’ve also got some purple sprouting broccoli to plant out and some more cabbage.
The runner beans are growing well in the greenhouse, I think I’m going to leave them on the plants and let them dry so I can use them as kidney beans. I do cook chilli quite a bit. The peas have not done brilliantly inside, if we do them next year, they’ll be outside. The kids have loved what we have produced though. I’ve also got haricot beans growing, which again I think I’m going to let them grow and dry. Could maybe make baked beans and add them to stews and all that in the future. I’m trying to store quite a bit for use over the winter. Not sure how effective it will be, but it will be more than we’ve previously managed! So that is good. Oh yeah, I cut the broad bean plants down to ground level because that’s apparently what you do (they put nitrogen into the soil as they rot off) and three have grown again and are flowering! Bonus!
Since the last post, we’ve also had visitors for a week. Chris’s parents came to see us. They stayed elsewhere but visited every day. It was great, It had been three years since we’d seen them in person. Three years is quite a while, especially when you have young children, they grow and change so fast. That’s one of the main things that bothers me about moving here. But strangely, it also didn’t feel as though it had been three years too, so that was good. I am hoping to nip across to see my family at some point, for a weekend or something, but I don’t know when yet.
Travelling is slightly more awkward than it used to be. We only have one car now and a motorbike (plus a normal bike with an engine). So if it is raining hard or if Chris needs the car for some reason, we don’t have it. So we won’t quite have the ease we used to with travelling. It doesn’t make it impossible though. We’ll probably fly in instead of going by boat and have to be collected or get the coach or something. Family, I will let you know I promise (not just turn up haha). I did actually have it really easy a couple of years ago, I just drove back. Home ed makes it really easy as well, we can come whenever we like and J’s passport was sorted very quickly, so that’s no longer a problem. Officially, when you read the rules, you’re not supposed to need a passport to travel between England and Ireland because of the common travel area, but you’re always asked for them at the airport. I suppose it’s probably the most reliable form of ID.
It’s been so hot over the last week, it’s been gorgeous. Thankyou God! It’s meant to be breaking tonight with torrential rain and a storm. Haven’t seen any sign yet, but it’s meant to be on it’s way. Then lower temps and more rain this week. It’s been lovely walking about in my crocs rather than wellies. It hasn’t been as hot as England though, I’m quite grateful for that. There’s been a stream of people driving past our house over the past week with trailer loads of cut turf for the winter fires. That’s something that’s very different about Ireland. We’ve been splitting wood whilst it’s been hot too and Chris is very busy making a log store out of steel. Pictures to come soon.
Anyway, I think that’s more than enough for now. I have plans to write more soon.