There was an error in this gadget

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

One year on

And the dull weather continues, we have had wind (a rarity) snow, rain, ice and sun. It is set to brighten up so we are poised to leap (!) into action. Meanhile we have been busy doing little jobs to keep us occupied.

Poor Dave has been out in the cold trying to make sure the chickens have all got somewhere to go out of the weather and they seem quite happy. The scrawnies are not so scrawny now, but the way they are going they will soon be on a diet! I have never known a chicken to eat so much! This means all the chickens are on a straight layers diet with just the odd cabbage leaf thrown in. The others are not happy! They were restricted to 'healthy' treats anyway, but even those have gone.

Other chicken news, Solo, our first ever chick, has laid her first egg! It has been a long time coming for a breed which is supposed to be quick maturing as she is seven months old, but with the latest cold snap lasting a while we will forgive her. None of the other pullets are showing any sign, or the ones who went to a new home. However, the oldest cockerel has disgraced himself and has gone for his new owner. Luckily she is an experienced chicken keeper and is giving him the benefit of the doubt and we are hoping it is just because he is a teenager settling into a new home with just his two girls, rather than being in a flock of eighteen ruled by Sevi. I have to say that it is a surprise to us, none of the five have ever gone for us, even when grabbed.. I hope he behaves himself or he will end up in the pot! (Not our's I hasten to add)

The chicks are doing well, it seems there may be two girls and a boy so could be worse. They are already growing feathers, it always amazes me that they change so quickly. But they do look a bit lost in the big nursery shed, though not for long hopefully.

Last Saturday was International Ladies Day and the village laid in another do in the village hall. All the dos are in the afternoon, which suits us and you would never know as the dungeon hall is underground. We are assuming it is so that they can get home to see to their animals before dark. There were few Brits there this time, but lots of children which is nice. I know, anyone who knows me knows I dont do children, but they are usually polite and well behaved in the village and it is good to see a large crowd of residents of several generations. So many old villages have lost their younger population. Venka was there and showing the youngsters how to skip around the dance floor. We had the usual fare of two sausage and a burger, cold mash, cucumber and tomato with bread roll and plenty of fluorescent pop, with gateau for afters. We take our own wine if we want it. There was a draw and we managed to win twice. A roll of thread and a packet of citric acid (for cheese making) One slightly sour note was when they were calling numbers. A young girl was sent to keep an eye on the Brit tickets as there were no Bulgarian speakers, and someone kept asking the caller to speak English which is not really on. Would we call the numbers in all languages of the people there if we were in GB? Not in a village do I suspect.
Dave found some carnations locally for ladie's day.
 Venka skipping around like a youngster
 Our prizes

Dave has done yet another picture. This time the subject was a friend's chihuahua which turned out really well and delighted the owner of the dog. Another boost to next year's heating costs. Also, the couple who had the cards were so happy with them they have told another couple who want the same. A good excuse to sit by the fire and make more. We are going to their place for lunch on Sunday so I had better get cracking.

I am having trouble keeping away from the kitchen with being indoors all the time, which unfortunately means I keep baking...then we have to eat. It's nice to have plenty of eggs to bake with now though. Good girls.
Iced bun....mmmmmmmmmmm

 Eccles cakes for Dave, he was so disappointed one day when he thought I had made some and it was something else. Always happy to oblige.
 This is what happens if you allow a crust to form on your proving bread, the dough bursts out where it can, making very odd shapes.

On Saturday we are going to a bird fair in VT. There will be a few ex-pats from different areas and we are hoping the lady who had the naughty cockerel will be there, so could be fun. We had better not take too much money though, we have enough chickens on the way...................

I would like to once again thank all those who regularly read this blog, and welcome new readers too. We have recently passed the 20000 pageview mark, which I think is amazing in under a year. It is one year and three days since our offer on this house was accepted. What a year, and I am glad others have found our adventure interesting.


  1. The eccles cakes were well yummy thank you darling, but a bit worried about the loaf.

    1. Cheeky! I'm sure it will be lovely with home made soup and home made butter...if you can bear it.

  2. I am finding it very interesting, thank you.

  3. Really enjoying your story too. As a new life it sounds very tempting. Do you think a body could survive on £70 a week there?

    1. I'm sure you could on general basis. The cost comes with buying a house and setting up your holding. If you are prepared to grow and preserve your own food you would have a lot less going out after the first year. We are going to have a much stricter budget now that we have done all the major work. But unless you have rent to pay and are not shy of physical work It could be done. Bear in mind that you have to pay for healthcare though, but you could budget for that or get insurance, an appointment with a doctor costs pennies and hospital stays are cheap, though you don't get fed I believe!.

    2. Thank you for the advice. I'll work on building up my capital before I start. I'm worried if I leave it too long the price of houses will zoom up in Bulgaria as more people discover the country.

  4. Love your blog. Very interesting read.

    1. Thanks again Maggie. There is sometimes a lack of things to write pre-spring but hopefully that will pick up now.