Monday 31 March 2014

goodbye march

March was a good month.  The weather has been changeable but there have been some beautiful skies and welcome sunshine. Spring may well have sprung.

Our garden is wakening up, beginning to unfurl in the warming temperatures.  We are planning our vegetable plot for the year ahead.  Growing things we will definitely eat seems to be the emerging strategy.  We had a bumper crop of Red Mustard last summer.  And absolutely no idea what to do with.  It did produce a lovely yellow flower though.  I am more enlightened now and tempted to grow a small amount this year.  Have you grown it before?

Today was especially mild and the sun shone.  I wandered around the garden after lunch enjoying the warmth.  Green buds are everywhere.  I am looking forward to perfect new green leaves covering the trees and shrubs.  A leaf covered tree. There is real beauty in nature.

Joining in with Annie's 'how does your garden grow?'

Monday 24 March 2014

simple pleasures

My simple pleasures.  The little things that have made me happy recently.

::   Blue skies.  Not many, but they were beautiful.
::   A day by the sea.  The first of many this year, I hope.
::   A brilliant yellow dandelion.  One of my favourite colours.
::   Echeveria.  The pink tips and how it lifts its leaves to the light.
::   Kitchenella.  From the library.  A good read.

So what's making you smile?

Monday 17 March 2014

beach combing

St Patrick's Day, our way. A trip to the beach with a picnic. Many happy hours spent running on the beach, an endless playground. Our eldest, his daddy's shadow. Everywhere his father goes, E is sure to follow.  

Kicking and splashing through low tide. Exploring rock pools, investigating under the carpet of seaweed discovering countless cockles, mussels, sea snails and barnacle covered rocks.  

Eventually grey clouds rolled in and with them, rain so we raced back to the car and devoured our picnic. We drove on to Killybegs, Ireland's largest fishing port. The boys loved seeing the huge fishing trawlers up close. We watched the local St Patrick's Day parade before heading for home.  

The little ones are all tucked up fast asleep and I'm exhausted. Must be all the lovely sea air.

Wednesday 12 March 2014

the enormous beetroot

The sun came out to play today.  After hanging the washing on the line, I wandered around the garden.  It felt really lovely, if a little alien to feel the warmth of the sun on my skin.  

The sunlight, bright and stark illuminated the garden.  Spring is definitely in the air and signs of new growth are appearing all around.  The ivy weaving its way up the ash tree has sprouted delicate new leaves, small but perfectly formed.  The viburnum continues to bud and flower and the thyme has beautiful coloured new growth, like tiny red flowers.  

The last picture is of an enormous beetroot.  It reminded me of the story of The Enormous Turnip.  I hope this beetroot doesn't need to be pulled and pulled and pulled like the enormous turnip.  

So are you enjoying the new season and the welcome sunshine?

Joining in with Annie's 'how does your garden grow?'

Friday 7 March 2014

the years in books: march

Oh how I love #theyearinbooks. Laura's project has motivated me to get on with reading again. The pleasure gained from allowing myself to become lost in a book is a delight. 

For my February read I had chosen Someone at a Distance by Dorothy Whipple. I wasn't disappointed. Persephone books are beautiful. And I loved this title. I hadn't read any other books by Dorothy Whipple so had no preconceptions about the story or writing style.

Dorothy Whipple is a very accomplished author. Someone at a Distance is an exceptionally well written tale of the disintegration of a family in the 1950s. The characters are well drawn and I found myself becoming rather attached to them. The author uses sharp observations of men and women of the time and while the novel begins slowly, it quickly becomes so gripping I found it difficult to put down. 

Someone at a Distance is a beautifully written and absorbing novel about adultery, love and sacrifice and how hope shines through in the end. I look forward to reading more books by this wonderful author.

I also started a second book, The Night Rainbow in February which I will finish very soon. I have chosen The Book Thief for my March read. It seems to be everywhere at the moment with the recent release of the film version. I hope its a good one.

As an aside, I'm not sure I am providing you with very useful reviews. I am conscious of not giving away too much of the story, so maybe I am not supplying enough information. This is a result of personal preference. I really dislike knowing too much about a book before beginning reading and so apologies if I seem to be holding back on the details.

Joining in with Laura.
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