It’s been a long slog, lots of money, mainly time and effort, and most importantly, a shared dream on what we wanted to accomplish. After taking a break from my blog, it is now time to review and have a look at what we have achieved with our country home.
(Sorry, a bit picture heavy this post!)
For those of you that read my blog back then, you will remember we bought this old cottage in the center of this tiny Slovak village, and wondered what to do with it !. There were three reasons to buy this place. The structure was sand. We knew we could develop it without having to demolish the whole thing and start again (might have been cheaper to do that to be honest!). It was in the center of a quiet, country village, no through traffic, idealic. The final reason was the size of the land.
The size of the land comes with its own problems, mainly the upkeep. For the first 2 years we let the local farmer use the land, and he planted sunflowers and corn. This kept the land in use, looking ok, and cultivated. In the meantime, we built the house and started to landscape the “lawn” area of the place. This has now been done, and I a very happy with the “Englishman’s Lawn” I have. Not quite Wimbledon, but looking good all the same.
With our future plans in the USA, we knew we had to secure the land, get a lockable gate and fence around the property, to keep people out, and to keep Meg inside. This has escalated, and we now have the lovely “White Picket Fence”, and a wonderful, hand crafted , iron gate, straight from the local blacksmith. We are very happy to have this finally in place.
We have now started work on the rest of the land. M has planted a herb garden, that will grow quite wild and free, with some management etc. his also has attracted large thistles and weeds that are slowly being removed. behind there we have planted 20 fruit trees. All very young, and in time will give us plenty of Apples, Peaches, Cherry, Pears and Apricots. Tucked in behind the old ban, we are going to develop the roof to give us shelter for tools and bits, and to construct three of four animal enclosures. Firstly, on our return, for Chickens, then for some small sheep, and maybe a goat … we will see.
We sowed grass seed 2 months ago, and it has grown well, along with huge weeds as well. For the last two weeks we have done all we can to get them out, and last night I finally cut the grass. After 2 hrs work, we were delighted to see real grass in abundance under the weeds, and with careful management and grass cutting, I can see a lovely orchard with lush grass all around. The vision is becoming real !
so, with all that in place, we have the “middle” area to think about. We will plough and flatten this before we go away, and then it will be left until we get back. Weeds will be sprayed out, and then we have plans for a large, natural pond, and outside seating area and back room for preserving the fruit, and hopefully, if funds allow, a wine cellar underneath, we will see.
We have the main plan of more development on the house. We love it, but, it is not big enough, currently it is only 2 bedrooms, so when people come to stay, we have to sleep on a mattress in the living room. We have ideas to redevelop the left end of the house, to include another full bathroom, a bedroom downstairs, and to put our Master Bedroom upstairs into the roof.
People say we are crazy, and should relax and enjoy life, but, if you don’t make plans, then how do you get your dream ?….anyway, the journey to get somewhere is most of the fun .. right ?