Monday, 30 March 2015

busy planning

Very modern neon Easter
image from pinterest
Now that we have a little time thanks to school holidays, added to the fact that it's raining (again) I've been thinking of things to do that'll keep little hands (and big hands) busy. I'm planning on making a Spring tree to hang with decorations ~ there is some willow in bud up the lane that I think will look very pretty in branches on the dining room table. There's also:

delicious primrose decorated easter cake from Circle of Pine Trees

really cute easter decorations from Seeds and Stitches

oh my goodness, this gorgeous bird's nest from 5ftinf

this popcorn recipe from Green Kitchen Stories ~ I think the boys would love it!

eggs benedict from Manger

Saturday, 28 March 2015

rain stops play II

And so the Easter holidays begin! The day started with rain loud enough to wake us from sleep and although the morning and the early part of the afternoon were rain free, it started again not long after lunch and so they came in from the garden and settled in front of the stove and played Monopoly. Thank goodness for board games....although I hope the weather will be kind enough over the holidays that we won't need them too much.

Wednesday, 25 March 2015


It's a slow but steady dance, waiting for Spring. Two steps forward, three steps back. Daylight is stretching, the mornings have been amazing ~ all blue skies and high clouds and the longer evenings are fantastic for the boys playing outdoors. But sometimes it all goes dark and there'll be a massive hail shower or rainfall and it'll feel like November again. We are on the cusp of Easter holidays. Mide is especially keen to be off school and this morning he did a little dance, singing that there were only two and a half days til holidays. We will have two lovely weeks of slow mornings (no lunchboxes!), catching up with family, Easter egg hunting and hopefully going to the seaside for some blustery walks. So yes, I'm with Mide on this one... only two and a half days til holidays...yippeee!!

Sunday, 22 March 2015

quick dip

Walking at this time of year has its own pleasure. The air is slightly warmer, everything has a fresher feel and the dogs are prepared to brave the water. We go to the lake and take in a different view than normal, climbing down stone steps into the field from which we go to the waterside. There are gorse bushes and lichen covered rocks and the deep imprint of cattle hooves in the mud. We swim here in the summer time but I have to admit the dogs are welcome to it at the moment! 

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

come into the garden

Oh the happiness of a warm spring day! The boys are home from school and playing outside. I am also outdoors having a cup of tea and making the most of the warmth on my face. A little rabbit bunting is in order. I use an old wartime cookbook* and turn to the chapter on salads, a perfect fit for bunnies. I cut the old thin paper carefully and then thread it with jaunty string. All the while the crows are calling from the yet leafless trees. I do wonder about them. I can't tell if they're happy we're outdoors or not. They do a lot of chatting and I fancy they don't mind us invading their space for a while. Anyway I finish the bunting. It is an Easter gift for a dear friend. The boys trail inside ~ they smell of fresh air and have grassy muddy knees. Soon it will be time to eat and it will still be bright.

 * It is Constance Spry's Come into the Garden, Cook and to be honest I am so cross with myself for having used it for bunting making over the years. It's a lovely book and beautifully illustrated ~ oh, the guilt...

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

erin go bragh

St Patrick's day
image from flickr
Happy St. Patrick's Day to you! We have just been to our local parade (the boys' school always take part) and now we're getting ready for some friends coming over this evening. St. Patrick's day is often wet and cold, so today we're glad it's just cold! A little nip of whiskey might be in order...

Thursday, 12 March 2015

half light

'towards the light'
'harbour series'
'home series'
Oh I do like the paintings of Maeve McCarthy. That murky half light, the starry skies and atmospheric gloomth that comes with encroaching darkness or that pre-dawn time, early morning, when a street light or lamp light, however hazy, is most welcome. Her work reminds me of those quiet night hours spent sleepily feeding the baby when you would honestly think not another soul was awake and then a car would drive slowly past, its headlights casting light and shadow momentarily and you would find comfort knowing that someone else was there in the world, sharing that same mysterious time.

See more of Maeve's work here

Monday, 9 March 2015

it's okay

I'm learning this 
image from pinterest
This weekend we had a lovely time. We did nothing. Well, we did very little. Friday was spent making homemade pizza for dinner and watching The Irish R.M. On Saturday the weather was kind enough to allow a bit of gardening to be done- muck spreading, planting and general tidying up. On Sunday we went to our friends Will and Becky for lunch. After we ate, the boys went outside to play and we spread ourselves on the sofa. Becky and I chatted and cooed at her beautiful baby Nancy. I told Becky about the five year diary I'd started in January. I said that looking back over the last couple of months I couldn't believe how much of my life was spent cooking and baking and being at home with the boys. It's all gingerbread and chicken pies, books read, walks taken, weather watching, following foxes footprints in the snow. She looked at me as Nancy lay in her arms and then she said that's the perfect life. I had been seeing it as quiet, dull, uneventful, boring even. But no, viewed from a slightly different perspective it is the perfect life.

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

spring reading

The calendar tells me it's early March, the beginning of Spring. I happen to know otherwise. It's still very cold and wintry here and with snow showers and blustery wind it's hard to believe Spring has come. These days I am never very far away from a pot of tea. I warm my hands around a favourite cup and there's gingerbread too. Of course a new month means a new book as part of Laura's The Year in Books. This time it's The Light Years by Elizabeth Jane Howard. The first in a series it follows the Cazalet family just as the world stands on the cusp of war. I'm looking forward to starting it and if the weather continues its wintry ways I think some fireside reading will be time well spent.