La Belle Vie en France

Our journey into purchasing and rennovating our fermette in the South West of France

The weather here in the Correze is a bit hit and miss at the moment. There have been spells of dry and sunny hours, then like Jekyll and Hyde, sudden downpours of constant rain, which makes working outside a bit of a hit and miss affair. Luckily for us, after the busy end to last week with all the tree felling, the first half of this week was ok to work outside.

On a bright and dry Monday morning Mandy and I set off to the back garden to tackle the felled trees, making them more manageable and moveable. We spent all day cutting down the trees to smaller stumps and delimbing the branches. After organising into various piles, firewood pile for burning, and smaller branches for chipping and placing on our allotment. By the end of the day and a few aching muscles later, we managed to clear two large oak trees into separate piles for processing later.

Tuesday was a repeat of Monday and we ended up clearing the massive Pine tree and half of the Chestnut tree. The whole process was a big learning curve for us both in terms of how the dissect trees when they’re on the ground. Learning how to chainsaw correctly so as not to get the chainsaw stuck in the trunk when it sinks on cutting and closing the cutting gap.  To correctly dissect a tree, one should start at the top of the tree and work their way to the base of the trunk, this way, the branches support the trunk keeping it in place as one works to the end of the tree.

Wednesday was one of those days when the drizzle just didn’t stop all day. For a change, we decided that we would clear all the branches that were piled up in the designated allotment area and put through the chipper, building three rather large piles of wood chipping.

As the upcoming replacement fosse is due very soon, we were asked to move a huge pile of firewood and breeze blocks, so that a drainage area could be dug when Mr. Fosse gentleman arrives.  It didn’t take long and once that was complete, we moved onto moving 60 breeze blocks.  The last things we still need to relocate are the compost bins.  One is full of horse manure and the other two have rotten veg and grass in them, which are nearly composted down fully.

Whilst Mandy was moving the wood pile, I started cutting more wood from the exact same pile, obviously lessoning the amount of wood she had to move.  We finally used all the wood the farmer gave us and the remainder of the left-over wood from 2019. Not bad since our fire has been none stop since 1 December last year. We are now into the 24 stere of wood that we purchased at the end of September last year.

By the end of the day, lots of work had been achieved to include moving all the newly cut wood in to the house, which seems to be burning rather nicely and keeping us very warm indeed.

The remainder of the week has been somewhat slower than the first half. The weather took a turn for the worse and generally has been pretty much constantly raining until Saturday. We decided that we would relax a little after a busy couple of days and just unwind. Other than going shopping, buying the fencing for the front of the allotment, (a whooping 60 meters), crocheting, purchasing replacement parts for the chainsaws, fuel, oil, tree wedges and keeping the house warm, we haven’t done much else. Whilst we probably should have pushed through the rain, and an earlier version of us probably would have, but we have retired and decided that it can wait until another day, when we won’t get cold, wet, achy and miserable.

The most important thing that happened this week was that Mandy got her first sale through her Etsy store!! Well done Mandy and keep up the good work! More sales will come.

As is customary in our blog, for now it’s time to hang up the keyboard, sit back, relax and have another cup of tea, as it is January and both of us have gone “Dry January”.

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3 thoughts on “A Week of Two Halves

  1. Lisa Galeozzie says:

    Love the weekly update!!

    Btw, before you celebrate Harley’s second birthday this week I need to correct you on his birth date, it’s the 4th Feb not the 2nd x


    1. Thank you for letting us know. We had a conversation about it but was not overly sure. xx


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