Tuesday, 30 October 2018

A Definite Chill

Sunday afternoon I smelt an old familiar smell
The smell of cold
Almost of Christmas
Well I associate the cold with Winter and as such Christmas
It came to me as the roast was in the Aga
The cottage was beautifully warm
And I went outside to put some recycling in the bin
Today I have just come in with some damp washing
Retrieved from the line
And I was transported back to my parents' kitchen
The smell of washing drying around the Rayburn
The light fading fast
And a nip on my fingers and nose
Smells can set a scene in your mind
Equally well as a thousand words
I love these smell induced memories
Which transport me back to my childhood
And a feeling of being safe
Though all was dark and cold outside
Inside there was food, warmth, and love
Tonight I hope my family feel that feeling as they step through the door
Of feeling like they've come home
To a very special place
Even though our boiler is not working
And a shower is out of the question
We will manage
Though working form home today I have turned up the Aga
Lit the woodburner
And had my feet on a hot water bottle
It has been rather a cold day
With the promise of another chilly night to come
I wonder what the coming Winter will have in store for us
And will we be prepared?
Blessings J. x

Thursday, 18 October 2018


Ah the beauty of the changing seasons
The catching of colds, and flu
And laryngitis
Yep and it's mighty hurty indeed
Last night I came downstairs 
In search of some pain relief
I was conscious of whimpering
Wishing I had a "Mummy"
To look after me as my own once had
Many many moons ago
Now although I cancelled my learners today
And have cancelled tomorrows meetings
I have still had to do a certain amount of chores
And keep roofers well fed and watered
For today was the day our front roof was removed
They worked well
Me not so
And sadly I didn't brave the ladder
Feeling decidedly wobbly 
Before the felt enclosed the roof once more
So chance gone
I did venture out on a short dog walk this afternoon
Just a little trek down the road
But not as far as the woodland
I had done so yesterday
And really struggled to catch my breath coming back up the hill
Hopefully tonight will bring a better nights sleep
For my addled brain
And creaking complaining body
I have just lit the fire
A gentle beast tonight as it's not terribly cold
Just a comfort for the evening ahead
A focal point
Ever changing dancing flames
Memories and memories even before us
In this little cottage
I love the sounds of a comforting fire
I love gazing into the depths 
Of glowing embers
I love the smell of woodsmoke
Of fingers tainted after tending the fire
It calms me and soothes troubles
It is company if I am alone
It provides warmth and light
I sit here and await my husband
Who has gone to our youngest's house
To spray the roof timbers with woodwormer
Youngest's caveman who is helping a friend take out a kitchen
And youngest who is working until a little later on
I can't think they would want to spend much time
Listening to me coughing, spluttering and moaning
Perhaps that is why they are all occupied?
I care not
It is what it is
However I wouldn't wish this virus on anyone
Strangely, though wooly headed I don't feel overly tired
Then I could sleep it off
Maybe I shall do so anyway
I think I have worked out
Why I have taken to writing as I do
With not a care for punctuation
In my work, though not assessing functional skills
I must correct every spelling and grammar mistake
In some cases this is demoralising for the student
They are not after all studying for an English degree
So OFSTED, this is a pulling a funny face
In your direction
And finally

A little something that was growing on a tree
Down in the woods a short while ago
Blessings J. x

Tuesday, 16 October 2018

Keep Calm and Clean Up

It's official
I have a man-child
He likes to help people
Other people
Nothing is too much trouble
In fact his mind is a whirl
Bits of this, bits of that
So sometimes
Just sometimes
He can forget important little details
That affect us quite dramatically
Take Friday evening as the example
Actually it was just about Saturday morning
I drove us home from our regular evening out at the local
It is rather a tight turn and I didn't want to hit his van
So I asked him to check that I would miss it
He looked and said yes it's ok
Then I was unsure how close to the porch my side I was
He said he'd get out and see me in
Job done
Fast forward through a very inclement night
Wind and rain dominated proceedings
He came home to breakfast just as I was leaving 
To go to the vet and do some shopping
I got in my car
Very wet...as in flooded
Water everywhere
Wet seats
Sopping wet floor 
Wet in the cup holders
Down the passenger door
Now I couldn't understand where it had come from
I banged on our front door and urged him to come quick
He took his time
Oh yeah...I undid my window last night
And you didn't do it up!
Obviously he had noticed when leaving earlier that morning
Closed said window
And hoped I wouldn't notice???
I was rather wanting to kill him dismayed at the mess
That I apparently was to blame for
And obviously I was to clean up
Luckily for him I had to leave right away to catch the vet
My revenge
I purchased seeded bread
I love it
He hates it
Thankfully he didn't pass one comment on said bread
He lives still
I calmed down when young Henry came to visit later in the afternoon
Actually they all came to lunch
But I calmed down later
With cuddles
And ooohhhs
And the cute little bleating noises he makes in his sleep
Yes Grandma is smitten

Blessings J. x

Wednesday, 10 October 2018

The Power of a List

I have been struggling of late
With the little delight oft known as housework
Being away from the cottage for chunks of the week
I arrive home and basically want to do nothing
Especially not the housework
And so things have been left undone
Standards have slipped
I momentarily considered employing a cleaner
Though I don't actually mind cleaning myself
So lists have been made
A daily task list
A weekly task list
A fortnightly list
A monthly list
Just got to love a list!
Anyway so far it appears to be working
The psychology of being able to tick things off
Has mystical powers
Of persuasion and reward
The persuasion being the nudge to get a move on
The reward being able to strike the magical tick
Especially when this morning
I exerted a lot of effort scrubbing the kitchen floor
On hands and knees
Elbow grease resulted in a momentarily clean floor
So after an afternoon spent with my eldest daughter
And grandson
Whilst son in law helped hubby outside
We had a treat for tea of Chinese
To celebrate her first birthday as a mother
To this little chap

Once again time has run away...
The above was typed up on Saturday
I have been having major issues with trying to blog
Blogger doesn't like my iPad at all
And our little internet connection speed we have
Doesn't often allow me to use this ancient laptop
Apparently born in 2012 it is a dinosaur!
I am unable to even comment on your lovely blogs at the moment
On my iPad anyway
So my apologies if I am quiet
I am reading and nodding in agreement
Or oohing at lovely photos
This little gem was growing in the woods
So I considered it would have been rude not to take a photo
And then mess with it just for fun

Lots has been happening here
I have managed to get another job
One that doesn't involve travelling for miles and miles
However for now I shall be keeping my other job also
We have a roof to pay for you know!
But I will be slowing down after that 
Especially come next autumn
When I will probably be looking after his nibs
For one day a week

Hope you can all still blog and comment
As your fancy takes you
Perhaps you are all using sensible computers
With super fast connection speeds!

Blessings J. x

Friday, 5 October 2018


Well I have been playing 
With photos in Snapseed 
Now a woman of my age
Probably ought to know better
Never one to turn down a challenge
Within reason
And so below... as on this iPad
I daren’t decide to try and
Intersperse photos 
Is my basket
I now carry this with me
On my almost daily woodland walk with Heidi 
And collect lightings for our hearth
Ash twigs
They make delicious snapping sounds
And keep me occupied 
Whilst Heidi sniffs her way through 
The woodland floor
My plan let me down slightly 
For the key to the cottage 
Lay at the bottom of the basket!
Anyway I hope you approve of said photo
The vintage look with a blur to the edge!
Not unlike myself 😉
Blessings J. x

Wednesday, 3 October 2018

A Minutes Peace

Just for the minute
Peace reigns at Little Winter
Heidi is asleep on the kitchen floor
Youngest who also has a day off
Has gone to check on their builders
They managed to leave on the outside tap yesterday
And completely drained the tanks
And water supply from the bore hole
They were not popular late yesterday evening
And in part are to blame for the inclement mood
of my youngest child

I have succeeded in making rather a lovely looking
Apple, cinnamon and sultana strudel 
I say it looks lovely
I cannot yet vouch for the taste
But what I can say is I regret very much
Sliding the tray in on an angle
After turning the strudel around
I now have a really burnt sugar and butter smell
Emanating into the room
And a very big sticky mess in the oven
Thank goodness it will burn off
Well I have half heartedly scraped away the worst
And am consoling myself with a cup of tea 
Which was here on the page but a mere moment ago
Blogger really doesn't seem to like my iPad

Cup of tea come back!

Alas upsizing this cup of tea seems impossible 
Never mind
Blessings J. x

Monday, 1 October 2018

A Long Week Past

How I have just chuckled to myself
I have been meaning to sit and blog for some days now
But how time flies when you're having fun working!
It isn't the actual work that leaves me so drained
Rather the endless miles I have to travel
Ah well the bills get paid
And that is rather important

Young Henry has been visited
Accommodated (with his parents)
He has been given many cuddles
If only I could hold him in my arms forever
Telling him of all the fun we will have
And all the capers he is likely to get up to
Over at Grandma and Grumps' house!

He is growing already and I feel a little sad
That one day too soon he won't be content 
To lie in his Grandmas' arms
But for now he is and I am relishing this magical time

Now you'll have to excuse me I'm afraid
For upon making this blog
Blogsy became no longer available to me
And I am having to learn over on Blogger
Getting photos to where they are available to upload
Is not proving an easy task at the moment
Sometimes it seems as though they appear as if by magic
But mostly they refuse to waft through the air
And stay resolutely where they originated
I know our broadband is all but useless at the moment
Which is rather frustrating to say the least
And so my meagre offerings to you today 
A young Ashmead's Kernel apple tree harvest

And some rather scrumptious apple and cinnamon cakes
Warm from the Aga oven

I hope you will all forgive me
But these past few days I have been relaxing
By reading a blog from the beginning
A most enjoyable time I have had too...
Tales From Parsonage Cottage...
I am nearly caught up now
And feel I could quite happily pop in for a cup of tea
In their delightful home 
So all the blogs I usually delve into on a regular basis
Will be eagerly caught up with shortly!

Feisty cat is not happy
He is confined to the cottage
As the other day he nearly got run over by a speeding car
Why he felt the need to go out the front
And across the main road I cannot understand
We have a large rear garden
Which backs onto farmland
Plenty of hunting opportunity
And much much safer
Silly Feisty cat!

I have begun lighting the woodturner
To ward off the evenings' chill
It has the effect of making me sleepy
And that feeling of utter contentment
The lights are dimmed
Shoes off

I fear I have missed the blackberry harvest
The local berries seemed to come in waves this year
The first flush being dry due to lack of moisture
Then nothing
Followed by fruits which when trying to pick them
Squished between fingers
But refused to part with the bramble
Not a pleasant feeling
There will not be copious amounts of 
Hedgerow cordial made this year

I have begun collecting rose hips
I adore the syrup which is such a chore to make
But worth it
Served with chilled lemonade
A real Winter treat
But again I need to forage for many more hips
To make a batch worthwhile of the effort

I have just popped the kettle on
A final cup of tea
Before a lengthy drive to the edge of the County
I have a couple of people to see
Before winding my way back home again
A place to feel Happy
To be at One with Oneself
To feel Motherly in that you want to take care of it and the people who visit
And Evermore
You'd be content to live there for Evermore
Yes...that's my definition of HOME!

How lucky I am
I hope it will not be too long before time and enthusiasm coincide 
And I am able to write in this space again

Blessings J. x