Thursday 30 November 2023

November 2023

 Just a few photos this month. We went back to England for our annual autumn 'birthday' visit and enjoyed a family lunch all together. Siena then went down with chickenpox and Rafael was sure to follow, so I went back again a week later to give Dan and Jess a hand.

We are back home now for a few weeks before driving back to England for Christmas

Here are our photos for November

Tuesday 31 October 2023

October 2023

 We have had a busy few weeks in the garden cutting back and tidying up for winter. We have finally had some rain - but not as much as the UK! The weather has been perfect for mountain many of our photos are of that!
Lesley's photos
Dave's photos

Tuesday 3 October 2023

September 2023

 We returned to England for a visit at the beginning of September - Clive and Sue were over from Australia so we were able to have a family get-together which was fun.

Friend Paul and his nephew Gabriel then came to visit for a few days, and we also had a get-together with English friends while Lisa and Neil were back here for a couple of days.

Now Dave is in England puppy sitting Nala while Lucy and Andy are away on holiday. I am holding the fort here - the Indian summer continues with temperatures over 30 degrees for the beginning of October! The guys (Satori) had a concert date in the remote Ariege (😆) on Saturday so I went to join them and to stay over at Veroniques Mothers house  - a lovely spot with fantastic views of the Pyrenees

Monday 4 September 2023

August 2023

 The photo above is the view from the bottom of the garden - the little umbrella pine on the left has grown quickly and gives La Maire a touch of the Mediterranean!

The sunflowers are past their best now and are looking a little sorry for themselves!

We had a mini heat-wave in August, providing some lovely hot weather for Dan and Jess's visit with the children. It meant the pool was lovely and warm for them, but other outdoor activities were restricted.
Luckily they left before the thermometer hit 40 degrees for 2 days, but then plummeted in 48 hours to a high of 14 degrees!

We have enjoyed a few bike rides and a couple of mountain walks as well. Dave's knee is gradually improving again

Here are our photos for August
Lesley's album
Dave's album

Wednesday 2 August 2023

July 2023

 A busy month with bike rides, a mountain walk, dinner with friends, a concert, the village fete, guests, garden etc......and our Ruby wedding anniversary.
Will let our photos tell the story
Lesley's Album
Dave's album

Sunday 2 July 2023

June 2023


June has been very busy with the garden (as usual) and guests in the suite. The holiday season has started!
I also returned to England for a week to see the family while Dave held fort here at home. England was enjoying a mini heatwave which was nice, while La Maire was battered by some evening storms and heavy rain on and off. 

The farmers here are now busy harvesting the wheat and the sunflowers are coming into bloom - photos next month! It is lovely to be surrounded by fields of sunflowers again as the farmers have preferred planting maize the last few years. Maybe the shortage of sunflower oil has prompted them to bring them back

Our photos

Friday 2 June 2023

May 2023

 Its wild orchid time here and they are particularly abundant this year. 
The weather has been very up and down with quite a cool and wet week (for Dad and my aunt's visit!), then some warm sunshine but with storms building most evenings. Dave has planted the tomatoes so hoping we wont get any hail!

Thursday 4 May 2023

April 2023 and our holiday to Nice and Tuscany

 April has been a month for travel. We first enjoyed a day trip to Andorra, mostly to buy petrol for the mowers as the strikes here were creating a fuel shortage and purchase of fuel in containers was banned for a couple of weeks. We had a nice day out though as well, including a walk up the lovely valley d'Incles. It was sunny and what snow they had this winter was rapidly disappearing.

We then enjoyed a couple of weeks holiday, firstly in Nice with good friends June and Jim from England, then on to a villa on a vineyard near Lucca in Tuscany with our French friends. We were lucky with the weather and had a great time exploring both the areas and the food and drink in both places.

We have returned to a wilderness of a garden! Plentiful rain and sun during our absence has caused everything to grow crazily! We are very busy this week cutting back, weeding and cutting grass. 

Dave will sort out his photos as soon as he has time! In the meantime, here are a few of mine


Sunday 2 April 2023

March 2023

 We had a good week in England with all the family at the beginning of the month. It even snowed!!
Back home the temperatures have shot up and we have enjoyed some spring sunshine. Everything green is growing very quickly but it is difficult to get petrol for the mower at the moment as the on-going strikes have created some shortages. Hopefully things will sort be sorted out!!

Lesley's album

Dave's album

Tuesday 28 February 2023

February 2023

 Lucy, Andy and Nala came to see us this month! 😃 They wanted to get in a few days skiing so booked a hotel in El Tarter for 3 nights. I joined them for 2 of the days. The first day brought a bit of fresh snow which was very welcome. The skiing was good but it was very cold - seats indoors for lunch were very hard to find! The following days were bright and sunny so they were able to make the most of the skiing.

I also enjoyed a short walk one day in the snow in the mountains with Jean Paul - it was really warm in the sun. 
Temperatures also reached 17 degrees at home for a few days so we could eat outside at lunchtime and make some progress with jobs in the garden. It has now turned very cold again  - we even had a dusting of snow here yesterday morning.

After struggling with his new knee since last June due to a cyst, Dave is now back on his e-bike so we have enjoyed a few local rides when the weather has been less cold. He has also seen an osteopath who has given him some exercises to help with the flexibility as he is still finding walking up and down slopes in particular very difficult. Hopefully he will soon by good for some more mountain walking!

Here are our photos for this month

Friday 10 February 2023

January 2023


A rather late blog entry this month! January was a month of 2 halves - very mild, then very cold!
We have continued to tidy the garden and have enjoyed a few bike rides when it hasn't been too cold for our hands, and have also enjoyed a music day with our friends and a weekend staying with Richard and Yvett.

Here are a few photos for January

Monday 2 January 2023

December 2022

 Happy New Year 
from the Ariege