A Day in Early Spring

Juicing is a great way to ensure one has the maximum of vitamins and minerals and this is something I do every day. It’s also a reason to keep greens growing all the year around, as even small bits can be added to the juicer and vital vitamins extracted. I’ve used some small bits of Kale that have escaped the frost and storms.   There is no waste in Permaculture, just compost and more vegetables growing! Compost is the food needed to grow food!   Slowly, slowly the Willow is cut and stacked…time is running out as the buds thicken!…

Midwinter Cottage

The air is still. The storm has passed.  Stillness and silence pervades the cottage. Jack is in his bed, and the boys continue to doss away the morning in the Lodge. A midwinter scene repeated all across the northern hemisphere. Someone remarked on the increasing silence they noticed in the world around them. Midwinter is a silent time, suffused with echoes and occasional sounds from strange places. Places that are more difficult to pinpoint on the landscape…it’s a trick played on us by Mother Nature as she paces the dormitories of sleep and hibernation. Candles illuminate the darkness, dispelling matt grey for moving…

The Heart of the Matter

Leitrim Animal Welfare Centre is a wonderful place for any unwanted dog or cat to end up…because 97% of these poor, abandoned animals are re-homed! Today I visited Christine Coulson, the lady whose dedicated commitment to the welfare of animals in this part of Ireland, made the sanctuary possible. Chistine opened this light of hope for the unwanted and stray cats and dogs, back in 1997 and has worked continuously, for the protection and welfare of abandoned animals. Back in September, I held an “Open Gardens” fundraiser for Leitrim Animal Welfare Centre and raised 610 euros…thanks to all the friends…

Fairy Lights

Winter sunlight turns bare branches, that drip with rain, into fascinating fairy lights. Silver prisms of fantasy, dangling precariously from thin Birch trees. The days of light and dark are confused with bright full moons, illuminating the bare landscape… This is a delightful time of year, as the sun makes its steady progress downwards, ever down… Light is delicate and unpredictable, sometimes overwhelming in its glow, at others, just a whisper of the day. Entire worlds are captured in water droplets. Fitting too, as water and sun give life. The coppicing continues and long branches are hauled up from the gardens…

Moving Forward…

There’s a touch of early autumn in the air. The air is cool and the sun is hidden behind low cloud and even a little mist. I must admit to loving this time of year! The morning is filled with activity as I clear space for my bigger and better workshop addition. This is all about living as sustainably as possible. The Lodge will now be that dedicated space that I have so long needed! As more and more visitors make their way to Bealtaine Cottage, for workshops on sustainable living and all aspects of permaculture, a space that would…

Cottage Garden Harvest

Red onions and seeds dry in the heat of the afternoon sun at Bealtaine Cottage. The Permaculture harvest is on it’s way. I am saving lots of seed from the biggest, healthiest and tastiest plants! The rain came and has left a little water…not much, but enough to fill the tank in the loft! Herbs and seeds are coming into their own! Potatoes are appearing where none were planted…these have grown from seed dropped last year and have not been earthed up! Blackcurrants are taking over the gardens! Apples are plumping out… Runner beans are seeking Heaven… Raspberries are being…

Cottage Industry

Gifts from Bealtaine Cottage… Lots of work going on here at the cottage making earrings…these are now in the Bealtaine Cottage Etsy Shop… Bead Earrings   Beautiful and very light-weight Bead drop Earrings with tiny bells on the end, that jingle softly as you move. I make each pair with attention to detail and colour…you can ask for a specific colour blend if you wish! These make exquisite gifts to post to that someone special…and can be posted direct from Bealtaine Cottage, set inside one of the Bealtaine Cottage Photo cards from this shop, to anywhere in the world! Just…

Framed, Raw and Rather Juicy!

I was given this beautiful old frame by a guy in a second-hand market in the local town. It is one of the most beautiful picture frames I have ever come across. Look closely at it, for it is a colourful mosaic of sea washed glass and shells. For several years now it has waited patiently in the shed for someone with a good idea…who just happened to come along this week. Cara was helping me to find a hammer in the outside shed on Monday, when she spied this frame and suggested it be used as a chalk board…

Bealtaine Cottage Fruit Growing and Winemaking Workshop

Growing food is important. Here at Bealtaine Cottage there is another bumper crop of Blackcurrants, Rhubarb, Apples, Pears and Plums growing. Preserving and using fruit is a challenge when the crops are this abundant! Making wine is one of the delights of summer, allowing fruit to be preserved in a unique and tasteful way…wine! There will be a day long wine making and fruit growing workshop at Bealtaine Cottage on Saturday, the 29th of June. A Vegetarian lunch will be provided, as will morning and afternoon tea/coffee and home made cakes. If you would like to book a place, please…