The first day of September today, and our Summer holidays are officially at an end :: back to school tomorrow for the Little People. The past few days have been really lovely here, both the weather and the little things that we've done as a family to round up the holidays. The change of season is very noticeable now, the shortening length of the days, the slight chill in the air, the incredible light. I took the above photo this morning, gazing out of the attic window into the sunrise at 6.43am, it really honestly took my breath away for a moment. And do you know what?? I just had a quick trip back into my September archives from last year and had a little chuckle to myself at the total sameyness of my life year on year....look at my attic view on 1st September 2009, and note the time, teehee!!
We've been making the most of being out in the countryside these past few days as we are being blessed with the most glorious late summer weather here in my patch. Yesterday we decided on a last minute jolly to Bolton Abbey for a late picnic lunch. The landscape is looking glorious, the distant hills turning purple with the heather already.
The early afternoon sunlight was magical, and the air was warm as we walked.
This river beach was our picnic destination, and the Little People were very excited at the prospect of river paddling and tree climbing to accompany their lunch.
Isn't the beach amazing? It's proper sand, just as you would find at a seaside beach, only instead of the sea, we have the river and the view of the old Abbey. Oh, and a lovely grassy bank to sit on beneath the shade of a big tree. It was blissful.
This morning we had the toe curling business of buying new school shoes, so we weren't organised enough to go anywhere for lunch. But as the weather seemed almost too good to be true, we decided to head out mid afternoon with a picnic dinner instead. We drove right up into the Dales to a favourite picnic spot of ours :: beside the river in Hubberholme (you can read more about this place here)
It was glorious. We spread out a blanket on that warm flat rock up above there and lazed about for a while, enjoying the heat of the sun on our faces and the sound of the babbling water. Well that's to say that J and I did, oh and Little B too, we three are very good at lazing. The LP, as you well know, do not sit or laze about. Good heavens, how silly to think that they might! No, they run, leap, paddle, throw stones, build dams, construct twiggy sailing rafts, chase ducks.
All that riverside activity made us hungry and we ended up eating quite early. We generally picnic very simply :: fresh crusty bread, goats cheese, cherry tomatoes, apples. A punnet of sweet strawberries and some left over birthday cake (Little Man turned 8 on Monday), washed down with apple juice/tea. It was absolutely wonderful.
The above photo was taken today at 5pm as I was drinking a mug of tea and nibbling cake. Oh, and indulging in a little bit of riverside hooky....
...yes, I did manage to make four little flowers, gosh how industrious!
Travelling back down the dale on our way home, J suddenly swung the car into a lay-by and declared that he wished to go fishing. We were at a little spot by the river that he remembered from his own childhood where he knew for a fact that it was exceptionally good to catch bullheads. And as we happened to have the fishing nets in the car, that was it :: he and the Little People leapt out and went forth to trap fish. Little B and I stayed in the car to do a little bit of dribbling/chewing/babbling and some crochet, which I was more than happy with. We had the car doors open, and I sat looking at this wall for ages...such beauty and craftmanship and history in these old dry stone walls, I had to take a picture to show you. Love love love them I do!
Hanging above the dry stone wall were these tree branches laden with berries...I do believe that Autumn is peeking around the corner isn't it?
And talking of Autumn, it's the season for my absolute most favouritist flowers from the market ....yaaayyyy it's DAHLIA time!!!!!!!!!!
I bought myself two bunches from the market at the weekend, I was hugely excited to see them looking all exuberant and showy in their pavement buckets just the same as last year. Oh my heart was going bump-bumpety-bump carrying these beauties home!
The dahlias are sold as very long tall stems tied up with brown string, but really I prefer to have them much shorter when I get them home. I like to chop a lot of the leafy stem off and bunch the flowers altogether in a jug of some sorts.
Dahlias just have to be put into a jug, there's no other way.
They are simply not vase flowers in my humble opinion.
It has to be a jug.
Something pretty and bold.
Something like this perhaps???
Yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes, The Button Jug!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I finally got the delightful Button Jug that I have been lusting over for months on end (remember me mentioning it in this post back in April?), I am so happy! I spotted it in the shop window of Fuego in Lyme Regis last week and that was it, I just knew it had to come home with me. I simply could not walk past and leave it behind. Wonderful, super-duper, heart-skippy stuff for sure.
A few dahlia blooms made it upstairs to my bathroom windowsill too, they make me smile every time I nip in there.
Something else in my bathroom too look............
....there on top of my bathroom cabinet........
......thats my new Cath Kidston washbag that I bought in York the other week, plus two beeeautiful soaps that came home from Dorset along with the button jug. I can't tell you how wonderful the soaps smell, in particular the rosy one. I keep yanking them down and inhaling them, but can't yet bring myself to open them cos the packaging is so damn pretty.
Both the jug and the soaps are made by the same Irish company Avoca, which I am quite in love with.
Just one more thing to show you, well two things actually, that were part of my little itsy-bit of Retail Therapy...two pretty little melamine spoons. For stirring my morning coffee in a very pretty way.
Ahhh spoons and jugs and soaps, such Deliverers of Pleasure! I do love my new purchases very much indeed.
And on that happy note, I shall say night-night, it's all gone dark and I am nearly ready for the rosy pillows.
Will be back again soon with a quirky little TRP Ta-dah. Hope you hadn't forgotten about them, the Toilet Roll People?? They are waiting patiently for their moment.