Saturday, 29 June 2013

Catching Fireflies

During the last month or so we have been watching the amazing phenomenon of fireflies floating around our garden. During a barbecue with our 'Irish Bugnarese' friends on Thursday night the spectacular fireflies were out once again. Inspired by the book with the same title by Tony Rocca that Dougie has just finished reading all nine of us decided to go catching fireflies. I can't begin to describe the cries of excitement from the grown ups each time they managed a catch, suffice to say it is difficult to know who had most fun - the kids or the adults.

We transferred six of our catch into a large glass jar with holes in the lid and when all the festivities were over and we were snuggled into bed the fireflies were our nightlight for the night. Dougie and I sat in the dark fascinated watching them for ages . Released in the morning, I am pleased to report that all flew away happily and now we have the jar on standby for the next time!

The Guest Garden

So one of this year's bigger projects was to make a private garden for the apartment, something I have been wanting to do for about four years now. Those of you that are following us on facebook may well have already seen the photos. Now, here comes the story!

Should we, shouldn't we, should we, shouldn't we? We should-ed and shouldn't-ed for a while (we have taken to our new country's 'piano, piano' - slowly, slowly - approach quite well I feel) and then the true face of team Reid revealed itself. Seriously, work isn't worth doing unless you are under serious pressure!! So, with just ten days to spare before our first booking of the season we went to the builder's yard and made the decision to go for it. From then on in there was no turning back!
Poles are in!
Fence is going up.

 Creating the garden involved:
  • digging holes and concreting in 7 posts and 4 corner spars
  • wiring the posts
  • attaching the fence
  • putting up screening for privacy
  • knocking through the wall from the terrace
  • digging out and transplanting 7 rather (too) well established laurel bushes
  • building and paving a step
  • capping a wall and finishing to make the garden entrance
  • painting the wall
  • creating a culinary herb bed
What can I say? True to form we got the job done with 3 hours to spare! Yes, if it hadn't been for the fact that our lovely Dutch guests  (the De Bruine family) arrived late evening, we might have had to warn them to mind themselves because the paint was still wet. But as it was, they remained blissfully unaware of our frantic building, clearing and painting, interspersed with all our usual guest preparation duties.
Before the breakthrough.
The moment of no return...


Digging out the hedge
Even our neighbour helps!
And still the digging continues...
A work in progress
6 hours before arrival
3 hours before arrival

Now, there is a private little haven for all our guests to enjoy!

Friday, 28 June 2013

June is all about the cherries...

Yes, I know, it has been, well...a while! We have been crazy busy this month with guests in the apartment, the end of school and all the various activities that involves, Dougie's mum to stay and a trip to England to see our lovely friends, but in truth...June has really been all about the cherries for all of us!

We have made cherry jam, cherry liquor, cherry cheesecake, cherry pie, cherry milkshake and cherry smoothie and the cherries keep coming! We have frozen a few kilos to see us through the winter and today we have picked another 5kg. More jam on the horizon methinks!