La Belle Vie en France

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

Woman walking her dogs in the snow

2020 has been and gone, and we are into a new year, 2021. Now that 2021 is upon us, we all ask the same questions……Will it be any better than the last year?  Who knows; besides COVID-19, it will be what we all make it to be? Many will be thankful that 2020 is over, and I think we speak for everyone, that we all hope 2021 sees an improvement of the pandemic around the world and a reduction in the lockdown/restrictions being seen everywhere.

Back in 1992, the Queen made a historic speech which described the year as “annus horribilis”, I think that she may have got it wrong and it was actually last year!

The week running up to Christmas was slow, quiet and calm. No rushing around preparing Christmas food for guests, as it was just the two of us.  We had the full Turkey Christmas Dinner, but no Christmas pudding (Yuck!!).  Animals had the raw version of Christmas dinner, turkey, vegetables and a fresh raw egg on top (Christmas Dinner Tartar).

Between Christmas and New Year, we saw no-one, we hunkered down with the fire on everyday….well who wouldn’t when the outside temperatures is between -1℃ and 4℃ , and that’s during the day.  Night time temperatures have been between -2℃ and -5℃. Brrrr!!!

On New Year’s Day our friends Peter and Colin came around for Turkey curry and watched Troy on Netflix.

On 2 January we went for a walk with the dogs around the 5km (3mile) loop. We took in numerous hamlets in the local area, and remembered to take photos this time.

  • Local barn on top of the hill
  • Woman in a field
  • Farmer Field
  • Dogs playing in the field
  • Two Dogs in a Field
  • Stone house in La Roche
  • Brook running through farmers field
  • Brook running through the farmers field
  • Street sign of La Roche
  • Woman walking her dogs
  • Stone Gite
  • Stone with place name painted on
  • Bird of prey sat on a fence post in a farmers field
  • Straight Road
  • Road Sign
  • Woman walking her dogs
  • Husband and Wife smiling for the camera
  • woman pointing at a sign

This morning, 3 January was a complete surprise to us, we woke to pure whiteness outside.  Two weather stations were checked, and rechecked, nope nothing is mentioned about having snow, but yes, surprise, surprise, it snowed last night and for a lot of today.  What more could a cocker spaniel want………snow………snorkelling in snow……………running and slipping in snow………. Yippee. The temperature didn’t get much above 0℃.  We took lots of photos for this blog. As the day wore on, the snow stayed, the sky turned from pinkie white to brilliant blue and the sun showed its face too.  A wonderful end to the day.

  • Snow on the road
  • Snow on the road under the motorway
  • Snow on the road
  • Snow on the road
  • View of the house from the side
  • Snowy House in the woods
  • House in the Snow
  • Woman walking her dogs
  • Farmyard
  • Cows feeding in the snow
  • Wood with snow
  • Woman walking her dogs in the snow
  • Woman in a field
  • snowy dogs
  • Snow on the road
  • Barn in the snow
  • Barn in the snow
  • Dogs playing in the field
  • Woman walking her dogs in the snow
  • Woman walking her dogs
  • Snow on the road
  • Snow on the road
  • Snow on the road

Mandy is busy crocheting away still and I’m now finished our blog until another day.

As is customary in our bloc, for now it’s time to hang up the keyboard, sit back, relax and have another bottle of my favourite beer.

We can also be found on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. So, if you like what you read and see, gives us a like, follow or tweet!!

Thank you and Happy New Year!!

Well, time certainly seems to fly especially as we are retired. Some days we literally do not know where the day has gone and what we have done. But you know that’s life and we shall just keep pottering on.

Since our last post, the weather has taken a turn for the worst and has become cold and damp. We have even managed a small yet short flurry of snow. Given all of the rain we have had in December I am surprised that any lay on the ground.

Mandy has opened up a small crafting business and I have spent much of the time learning how to create web pages and run them. In fact, that’s where the time has gone. The business can be found here; www.artisantcorrezienne.fr and is called Correzienne Crafts. She is still in the very early days of the business and is currently sat next to me crocheting a snood so they can go on the online store. So why not go and check it out and also my guest blogging on the history of crochet and macrame!! I never knew I had it in me to blog about such things. We also are on Facebook and Instagram; links can be found on the home page of our site.

On the Covid front, France has now moved into a curfew stage to try and reduce infections. So, the dreaded form has now gone and we can go about our business as normal but must be home and tucked up in bed by 8pm every night! Over the festive period only Christmas eve has the curfew been lifted. New Year will be slightly different than normal, but for us older folk it will be situation normal.

After a little searching and plucking up the courage to have a difficult conversation in French to get registered with a doctor, we have succeeded! That means Mandy is now registered and has got her prescriptions initiated in France and is now in the French health care system! Which given our limited French was no small achievement. It also helped that the doctor spoke English. A massive relief there!

Christmas at Chez Adams was a quiet affair this year and we stayed home and have not visited any one this time. Mandy and Lynda visited the local Christmas market in Uzerche and had a lovely time, especially as Lynda was not due to be home at Christmas due to work commitments.

So I suppose for now that is us caught up and as the communications director of Mandy’s enterprise (unpaid) and this blog writer I must get my finger out and keep you all up dated as to our progress.

As is customary in our blog, for now it’s time to hang up the keyboard, sit back, relax and have another bottle of my favourite beer.

We can also be found on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. So, if you like what you read and see, gives us a follow, tweet or like!!

Thank you!

This week has been much slower than normal here in the sunny Correze. The weather has been glorious considering that it’s the end of November and beautiful clear skies plus nice and warm (15-18℃). But looking at the weather forecast it looks like this may be coming to an end as we enter December! I am sure there will be some more glorious winter dates to come……this is the Correze after all.

It’s been a busier week in the workshop than normal after installing the cat flaps and making signs informing the locals that there are kittens about and to drive slowly. The garden got a new bench and makes a great addition especially when tea breaks come. We also have been making bird boxes for the local wildlife. Mandy’s new roses also arrived which meant four new planters had to be made. The wood for our shutters has finally been milled to the right thickness, however work on them might start in the new year. Our friend Steve who owns a campsite with his wife Sharron (which we stayed at before) kindly agreed to mill them for us. Check out their website if you are thinking of visiting this part of the world, you won’t be disappointed we weren’t! For those who like workshops, you should check out Steve’s! Workshop envy.

The cat flaps are in and it has taken the cats a while to pluck up the courage to wonder out, today they ventured into the pig style (Man Cave) and the barn and had great fun running across the roof (attic) of the house. This was somewhat confusing for the dogs who could hear footsteps above them but couldn’t understand what was making the noise.

The three dogs and cats are getting along very well together and are often found snuggled up on the sofa or in front of the fire. They have really taken with each other. The animals are all over our Facebook page so why not go and check them out.

As is customary in our bloc, for now it’s time to hang up the keyboard, sit back, relax and have another bottle of my favourite beer. 

We can also be found on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. So, if you like what you read and see, gives us a like, follow or tweet!!

Thank you

The woodchopping has reached a milestone since the last post. We have finally managed to cut 50% of our wood purchase and only another 12 stere to go. Thankfully we have enough ground to store it but sometimes when you look at it you do wonder……. Do I? So far, apart from a lot of petrol used it has cost some free time and two chains for the chainsaw, which has been performing exceptionally well considering the amount of firewood and trees it’s cut in the last 8 weeks. However, that did not stop me from having an impulse buy last week. Yes, I went and bought a new Sthil chainsaw, chain and file sharpening set! Much to the joy of Mandy who know is excited about gaining the old smaller chainsaw we were originally using. Best she gets kitted out with the correct PPE!

The weather continues to be glorious and mild during the day with beautiful sunshine, whilst starting to get a bit chilly in the evening and we have even had a couple of frosty mornings. Fingers crossed the weather continues as the clear blue skies and warm sun certainly lift the spirits during “Confinement”.

The man cave has welcomed several new arrivals in the last month and are certainly a helpful addition to the ever-increasing list of items we wish to make. The second-hand bandsaw was a bargain, but will be a restoration project for now before it gets back into full service as it needs a clean, service and new saw blade.

The kittens are as mischievous as ever and itching to get out and explore the big wide world, but all-in good time, as we have just finished installing some cat flaps at the rear of the house so they are directed away from the road in front of the house. Whilst we know it won’t stop them from crossing the road, we can try to keep them from it as much as possible. The plan is for them to be released in the next few days, after Mandy has put up some “drive carefully” signs, and I am sure they will have lots of fun. 

The three dogs are just being their normal selves and have really taken to the cats. They are enjoying their country walks and sleeping in front of the wood stove. The animals are all over our Facebook page so why not go and check them out.

As is customary in our bloc, for now it’s time to hang up the keyboard, sit back, relax and have another bottle of my favourite beer. 

We can also be found on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. So, if you like what you read and see, gives us a like, follow or tweet!!

Thank you!

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