Life at La Balme

In March 2017 we decided to write a diary about our life here at “La Balme en Peyrilles”. The plan is to write a short blog post once or twice a week : work and pleasure. Hope you enjoy the reading our articles. Ian and May Dempster

Bienvenue : Welcome : Welkom : Bienvenida

On our way home after having coffee with our neighbour, coming across the field there is the perfect photo of the entrance to La Balme. Glorious autumn day, lots of berries on the shrubs, we might even sit outside for lunch, the sun is so warm.


Autumn has arrived, cool evenings and mornings, by afternoon, shorts and t-shirts back on. Wonderful time of year. We had some rain last weekend, so the grass is green, trees not going into full autumn colours yet. We are very lucky to be surrounded by oak, so the shades of […]


For once there is a peaceful feeding time, normally they are chasing each other up and down the trees, or across the grass bouncing off the trees. Wonderful to be able to watch these beautiful creatures. Whilst I was trying to get a photo of three, another one walked across […]


Unfortunately, one of our Apple trees has died, it was so full of apples, I tried thinning them out, but one large branch was on the ground, then one morning, broken away from the tree.  Two days later, Ian heard a crack, walked around the piggery to see the tree […]

Apple Tree

Was hoping that you would be able to see all the bees and 🦋butterflies on the lavender, at the house. So disappointed with the photo. The lavender on the drive is amazing, as well, so many beautiful insects enjoying the flowers. Ian has been swimming for over a week now, […]

Lavender, Butterflies and Bees 🐝

walking back from admiring more orchids growing at the walnut trees with a friend. We stopped to take photos of lizard orchids, continued walking towards the drive. Looked at the Grange and thought it was a nice photo, so here you are. Friends visited for coffee this morning, we sat […]


New liner in the big pool. It is now full of water, just need a few hot days and nights to warm it up. Today is a good start, lovely sunshine at last.  

New Pool Liner

Out walking between the heavy showers, what a wet spring, never known it be like this in our 15 years of living at La Balme. Here are a few of the Orchids and Wild Flowers you can see, there are more I am sure, that I miss. Sorry about the […]

Orchids and Wild Flowers

Looked to the right when I walked out of the house and saw this beautiful orchid. The bird song this evening is also incredible, we love living here. I am sure that we heard a nightingale during the night. There was certainly an owl, not in one of the oak […]


Four Apple trees in blossom now, they are so beautiful. Very hot day, with a glorious wind, good day for getting my linen dry. Pity it has to be ironed. Forecast is for this to last into next week, it is certainly very welcome. I am looking forward to an […]

Apple Blossom

When walking this afternoon I found a lot of early spotted orchids, some not damaged by the lawnmower, they are so beautiful. The temperature is rising, although there is still a little breeze which can be cold when you are out of the sun. The wild flowers and blossom make […]

Walking at La Balme

Common European Cookoo
managed à walk around La Balme, cuckoo calling all the way. I now remember getting tired of hearing them every year, but good to know that spring has definitely arrived,  Achieved my target steps, so a happy person. Saw a few early spotted orchids, someone (we all know who) has […]