Oh my goodness! It has been almost 18 months since my last post. I have allowed life to get in the way and my writing has suffered. We have been having a pretty hard time of it for the last 5 years or so. It all started with my dad being diagnosed with dementia. This meant I spent extended periods away from home to help my mum out. As my dad progressed and was coming to the end of his battle, Kevs dad was diagnosed too. This meant we were both travelling back to the uk to support family. I am sorry to say that Kevs dad passed this April too, but we had already had diagnosis number 3 in January of this year, my mum. So this is where we are. Third time with a parent suffering from dementia, only this time mum is living with us and so we are the carers. We are strong as a couple and have the same family values so no question about the caring side, it is our job to make mum as comfortable as we can in her remaining years. 

I have wanted to get back to writing for a while but life can sometimes be so overwhelming that things just have to be put to one side for sanities sake. Now we are in a place where Kev is the one travelling to the uk to see his mum and family, hopefully about 4 times a year (a lot less than before) so we feel more settled and ready to work once again. If you have read other posts here, I thank you for sticking with us, if you are new welcome and I hope this blog may show you a snippet of our way of life. I am hoping that this blog will be a mixture of gardening, animals, caring and food preservation.

So, where are we up to with our garden? We have decided that plants can help us to remember our missing loved ones. For my dad we bought an apple tree. He had a massive apple tree in his garden and so we thought this a fitting tribute to a man who loved apple and blackberry pies. Luckily for us we can forage blackberries and store them in the freezer.

For my Uncle Ian, who passed 3 weeks after my dads funeral, I bought a red grape vine. We always shared a bottle or two of red wine when ever we saw each other. 

Kevs dad loved strawberries. We have had a real problem growing them here. We plant them and within a year they are dead. This April however, we planted strawberries behind an apple tree hoping that the shade from the tree would help the plants. As of now we have lots of babies rooting so next year we should have lots of strawberries to eat.

This year our fruit trees have produced well for saying they are all young trees. We have 4 plum trees that all produce at different times of the year. The first are a deep purple, they are sweet flesh with a tart skin, these were ripe beginning of June. Mid June we have the little yellow plums that are really sweet, we still have some in the fridge, they keep well. This month we have big green plums and a different variety of purple.  

The cherry tree that we planted in memory of our old dog George, produced a good amount of cherries. They were ripening in June and we are just finishing off the last of the fruits now.  We still have our flat peaches, apples and pears to go yet. Alongside all this tree fruit we have been picking raspberries too. We have eaten them and stored a big bag in the freezer for winter use. We have been eating a lots of fruit salads, all the lovely vitamins and minerals and no sprays, will do mum the power of good, with ice cream of course, well it is hot!

In my last post 18 months ago, we were sorting out the garden on the land. This year we planted 100 tomato plants, 200 onions, lots of butternut squash for storage,  yellow zucchini, beans and mange tu. 
In the garden we have courgettes, ball squash, Italian peppers, aubergines, chard, kale, broccoli, cherry tomatoes and corn growing. Oh and lots of edible weeds too. My favourite is purslane, I add it to salads.

This is where we are. I am hoping that our new life will enable many more posts to be written, which will mean lots of work to be done. We still have lots of projects on hold so watch this space.