Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Overdue maintenance



I should have trimmed those hoofs ages ago... but I did a nice job today.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010


Today we planted +/- 365 onions(+/- 500 gram), half of what we have programmed to plant. Last years onions lasted till the beginning of this month. So this year we need twice as much.

The awakening of the willows

Spring vegetables

This year I am much much later with the vegetable garden than last year. The first vegetables of the season are ; Lambs lettuce, Lettuce 'Frosty', Spinach and Rucola.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Gardening with babies

Garlic planted in December is enjoying Spring weather. Katinka isn't.

"Gardening with babies" wont be the name of a new and successfull TV series. Within 10 minutes after being parked in the buggy Katinka was bored out of her mind and the gardening with a baby experiment was stopped.
"I am so bored....."

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


We have added 16,600 square metres to our smallholding! We now own almost 10 hectares.
How many goats and christmass trees can you grow on this amount of land?

Monday, March 22, 2010

Digging & sowing

We are rather busy so gardening duties are done in the evening hours. However we managed to turn the soil over of a small part of our vegetable garden and sowing has started.Indoors sowing: peppers, tomatoes, celeriac and lettuce. Outdoors sowing: peas, mange-touts, broad beans, spinach, rucola and beets.
We have done +/- 100 square metres, 20% of our garden. It is much easier then last year when we had to plough through thick layers of weeds and our loamy soil contained lots of stones. We removed as much stones as we could and added tons of organic matter.

Monday, March 15, 2010


With roadworks interupted because of the cold weather, we park our car on the neighboars road. As long as it is cold and freezing we can reach our house but when the thaw sets in our fields will be too boggy to drive over. We don't like to be stuck in the mud, we prefer to walk 100 metres.

Something in there?

Sunday, March 14, 2010


One week to go and it will be spring.....

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Sunday, March 7, 2010


Life is not only about keeping goats and growing Christmas trees (not always a nice combination by the way).
We have worked many years in Africa in Development Aid, which since long has become a business and is often more about political interests and personal careers than about improving the living conditions of the poor. We ran away from it to live on our smallholding in the middle of nowhere… That’s freedom and we can do it because we have the guts but more important: the means and a Dutch passport.

So a political party named: Party for Freedom sounds nice isn’t it? It is a new party which came first in municipal elections in Almere and second in The Hague, the only two cities in which it participated in the recently held municipally elections in my homeland Holland. However this party is not about freedom for all but just for a small and selected group of people. It is a party that preaches hatred against immigrants; it nurtures on fear of the unknown and finds a rich breeding-ground in today’s economical situation. When have we seen this before? Don’t we learn from history?
It worries me and makes me very angry, even although I am living here on my own little paradise in the middle of nowhere. Because life is about much more than goats and trees…..

Thursday, March 4, 2010


"HALUSKY!!! You eat INSTANT HALUSKY???" Screamed our neighbour when she saw the package in our kitchen. Yes we do, It is our fast food for evenings we're not in the mood to cook. However it was taken as an insult to Slovak cooking. Today I made real halusky, quite easy actually...
I hope our neighbour will forgive us.

Monday, March 1, 2010


We do not have many neighbours. And this is the nearest hamlet to our house, it is called Duchenec II. It is not that far, I took this picture today while walking the dogs and enjoying the wonderful weather.
If you look well (click on the picture to enlarge) you can see the mountain Sitno (1,009 metres) on the background, it is the highest hill of the Štiavnica hills.