Sunday, 3 September 2017

My Green Summer

I pretty much took a break from blogging this summer - partly I was too busy and something had to give and partly my internet connection was playing silly whatsits and was often so slow (or even dead) that it made working online almost impossible.  I am keeping everything crossed that will behave itself from now on.

So I though I would take this opportunity to share with you some of my green moments from the summer of 2017.  I'd love to hear what you have been up to too.

Family Time

The boys and Simon went camping in the UK for a while and when they were here we had some great times playing games such as Settlers of Catan and Molkky (Finnish skittles made from wood), visiting local landmarks including our favourite castle at Falaise (birthplace of William the Conqueror) and taking some lovely walks around the Normandy countryside.

Playing Molkky

Falaise Castle with its medicinal garden
Walking in Normandy

Harvest Home

The veg patch kept me super busy this summer.  The weather has been unusually dry all year so this meant a lot of watering ... but when it did rain the weeds grew like triffids.  The courgettes, as ever, did well and I am still drowning under a mountain of them - if you are too, this post with 10 courgette recipe ideas may be just what you need.

Vegetable harvest at Eco-Gites of Lenault

I have also been foraging and the elderberries have been superb this year.  The blackberries have been ripe for a while but it will be a few more weeks before the sloes are ready.  Together with windfall or crabapples those are the main ingredients of a hedgerow jelly I make.

Elderberries ripe for picking

Light bulb moment

Isn't it great when you have one of these?  I did when I realised that I could buy the larger tins of tomato purée so I had less packaging (the 3 small cans I otherwise buy are held together with plastic film) and rather than waste what I didn't use I could pop it in ice cube trays and freeze it.  All I then need to do is to add the frozen cubes into whatever stew or soup etc I am cooking.  How simple and non-wasteful is that?!

Freezing excess tomato purée in ice cube trays

Eco-Gites of Lenault

Finally we have had a busy summer with guests in our eco-gite.  And this month we are featured in Complete France online magazine and you can read all about us here in "Living the good life in Normandy."  The gite sleeps 5 and we would love to welcome you here one day.  Mention the code GRH when booking a holiday of one week or more and we'll give you a hamper of local Normandy foods worth around 25€.  Offer subject to T&Cs which are available on request.

Eco-Gites of Lenault
Polytunnel and potager at Eco-Gites of Lenault

Free Hamper worth 25€ when you book a week or more at Eco-Gites of Lenault with the code GRH

I hope you too had a lovely summer.  I am linking this post up to my #GoingGreen Linky so do head over if you have a green themed post you would like to add ... or if you'd simply like some inspiration for ways to make your life a bit more environmentally friendly.

Lou Messugo


  1. It looks lovely where you live!
    I use my ice cube trays to freeze stock that I make from leftover meat and veg scraps. It works really well. Didn't think about using it for tomato puree. Great idea #GoingGreenLinky

  2. Hi Rosie,
    Thanks for sharing these beautiful pictures. I love the old stone house and the vegetables look so fresh and healthy. Never thought about freezing tomato puree but I also really don't use a lot of puree or tomatoes. I have an allergy to tomatoes but my husband does it them. Right now he is eating a lot of fresh sliced tomatoes that we buy from a local produce stand that we visit every week. Tweeting and pinning. Have a healthy happy & blessed day. Visiting from #GoingGreenLinky!

  3. Your vegetables look amazing, I'm jealous, mine were pretty good, but nothing compared to the ones in your photos #goinggreen@_karendennis

  4. Hi Rosie,
    your summer sounds pretty great! I love your idea of freezing tomato purree in ice cube trays. I will try that. I just recently started freezing coffee that I didn't manage to drink like that - free iced coffee! Also, your eco-gite looks beautiful, I would love to stay with you guys at some point. Maybe once I move back to europe :)

    Thanks for hosting the #GoingGreenLinky!
    x, Juliet

  5. Lovely to see your allotment produce. We had an explosion of rocket and so we made a huge batch of rocket pesto. Portioned it up and popped it in the freezer. Fresh rocket pesto when ever we need it.
    Congratulations on being featured in a magazine, I hope you get lots of bookings it looks stunning.

  6. Sounds like a great summer, especially no blogging! ;-) Will be pinning the courgettes recipe post, although we ended up with one on the balcony and no cucumbers - lots of hungry slugs and snails! We have done well for tomatoes and peppers though, which is good. Love the tomato puree idea, freezing in small portions to just chuck in when cooking is so handy. off to read your magazine feature now. Lx

  7. Would love to come and visit some day, you have exactly the same ethics as we do with gardening. It has been a strange summer, one minute we are watering like mad here and the next it is raining, not at all normal for the Charente Maritime! xx

  8. A summer without blogging! Just like me! And it felt good. Genius moment with the tomato puree, it seems so obvious but I've never thought of that before. I'll be doing that from now on for sure! Thanks for linking up to #AllAboutFrance

  9. I use ice cube trays for freezing left-over stock or wine and then popping it into a stew or soup. I'd never thought about it for tomato puree. Your home-grown produce looks awesome. I am too lazy to have a veg patch...#AllAboutFrance

  10. Sounds like you had a good summer and I will take a look at those courgette recipes! #AllAboutFrance