This blog is mainly a rambling kind of diary of the transition from smallholderwannabe to smallholder.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

The new year has arrived and with it come some big challenges for us. This will probably be make or break year for us. We've been wanting to move to a smallholding for many years and actively paid off debt and mortgage for the last 10+ years and saved a deposit. What we get on selling our house will not pay for a house and field. If the new place is too far from work, then that would be a problem as regards work and income and getting a mortgage. However, the new government's changes in education could mean that my husband's income will plummet fairly shortly. This could bring more problems...

We started off thinking that we wanted to move to Wales but now that we have grandchildren, that move would mean that we would hardly ever see them. So we've been looking closer to hand but prices are higher and there is this big gap between what we want and what we can afford and there are not that many places on the market anyway.

We started along this route originally because my husband's asthma is so much better outside of the city and we wanted to produce our own food and be as self sufficient as is reasonably possible. And so the dream of a little smallholding was born. If we can't find somewhere this year while we are still working then we will be forced to give up on that dream.

My hens have appreciated the lack of snow and the numbers of eggs laid have reflected that. I felt sorry for them walking on frozen ground. We had put down lots of leaves that we'd collected but in the end they froze into a solid heap too. For each run my husband had constructed a frame and covered it with a double layer of plastic. This sits on top of the run area and lets some light through but was sturdy enough to keep the snow off the ground in the run. Made from scrap of course but it worked fine until the temperature dropped too far. Hopefully, this screen will help to keep the rain out too because our heavy clay soil quickly turns into a morass.


  • At 1:28 AM, Blogger Jane said…

    Jo, re this house move notion, email me at please.

  • At 1:49 AM, Blogger Frugal Queen said…

    "However, the new government's changes in education could mean that my husband's income will plummet fairly shortly. This could bring more problems..." Does this affect all of us? are we due a pay cut?

  • At 1:42 PM, Blogger Jo said…

    No - but some of his pay is enhancement for responsibilities that are about to vanish because the government has done away with them.

  • At 1:05 PM, Blogger Gina said…

    Best wishes on your hopes and dreams. Sounds like you are committed to do what you can to make them come true.


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