☀ Humid, hazy weather here right now, with low slung cloud and the constant threat of rain in the air. It feels warm and muggy, and I find myself lacking in energy and slowing down to a lazy dawdle. I fantasize about loafing around on a well padded garden lounger sipping chilled wine and taking afternoon naps, but that really isn't happening at all, in any way, shape or form. Well, possibly the chilled wine might be happening a little later on.
☀ Drinking a mug of fresh coffee out in the back yard in the mornings, listening to the rooftop jackdaws calling to each other and the neighbourhood gently going about it's business. We bought our Nespresso coffee machine almost five years ago now and I love it more than ever. The ritual of making and drinking my morning coffee is something I enjoy very, very much. I add quite a bit of lightly frothed up hot milk to my lungo coffee shot, then finish with a liberal dusting of chocolate powder. Deeeeelish.
☀ Stripping off my bed and pegging out the freshly washed bedding on the line, keeping fingers and toes crossed for the rain to stay away long enough for it all to dry. I absolutely adore these Cath Kidston pillow cases, for some reason it really pleases me that each side has a different design. Gosh, there is honestly nothing nicer in the summer months than climbing into a bed made up with freshly laundered, sun-dried bedding, it's one of life's pleasures for sure.
☀ Tilly kitty, curled up on my Moorland blanket enjoying the quiet warmth of a sunny spot. I don't think she appreciates the constant noise and movement which comes from the Little People being at home during the holidays, but in the times when all is quiet downstairs she definitely makes the most of it.
☀ This was a bit of a bitter sweet Summer moment as I drank the last of the homemade elderflower cordial this week. Oh, the cordial tasted soooo good this year, the perfect combination of fresh/sweet/zesty and I am missing it now that it's no longer around. Commercial elderflower just isn't the same.
☀ We walked through the park to the farm shop one afternoon last week, partly to buy some fruit and salad which we needed, but mainly just for something to do when the sun suddenly came out to play. It's about a 20 minute walk each way, and we always stop in the park on the way back. I loved this view from the picnic bench, the sunshine and shadows along the tree lined pathway reminded me a little of a Van Gogh olive tree painting.
☀ Part of the trip to the farm shop generally includes a small treat for the Little People, which always goes down well. There is an amazing bakery at the shop and these cookies are a real favourite. These short local jaunts with a pit-stop-picnic are so simple and summery, but I love how much the Little Peeps seem to enjoy them.
☀ Ahhh, let me introduce you to my latest salad crush - fresh pea shoots. Actual pea shoots!! Who would have thought you could really buy a bag of these tasty little morsels from the shops, they are so yummy and I could honestly eat a whole massive handful straight from the bag. They taste so good that I'm quite happy to devour them in the nude (the shoots that is, not myself), but I'm thinking this Asian inspired salad dressing sounds amazing. Or perhaps a simple lemon vinaigrette would be good.
☀ A little fruit haul from the *eh-hem* untamed section of our allotment plot. Much like the elderflowers, the blackberries seem to be especially good this year, maybe due to a very dry spring followed by a shockingly wet summer? Whatever the weather whys and wherefores, the brambles are producing some mighty fine fruit right now, and we are loving it. We tend to eat them as nature intended as they don't last long enough for me to contemplate turning them into cooked up food stuff.
☀ A morning walk around the reservoir on a day when it was warm, grey and moody-looking. The low light levels and pervading shades of grey weren't particularly inspiring, but it always feels good to get out a bit with the Little People and remind them of the natural gorgeousness we are so blessed to have on our doorstep. Plus, the summer grasses swaying in the breeze made me happy!
☀ This is such a beautiful old tree tucked next to a dry stone wall that runs alongside the reservoir, its trunk is huge. I always feel like I want to wrap my arms around it and give it a hug when we visit, although I'm sure J would have a fit if I became a tree-hugger. The colours of the bark are so soft and lovely, and I find myself beginning to think of a tree-inspired colour palette (the new Lincoln green is right there!)
☀ A second outing for Little B's pocket kite, this time up on the windy tops of Barden Moor near to where we live. We took a short walk up there last weekend so that we could see the heather at it's peek - oh, it did not disappoint. In fact, I think this year is the best display of moorland purpleyness that I've ever seen, it is absolutely breathtaking. As you would expect, I took a mahoosive amount of photographs......and I took my Moorland blanket up there for the first time too, for a little bit of a photo shoot. Oh yeah! I realised a short while ago that I never wrote up an official Ta-dah for the Moorland Blanket after I finished it, so I really think I need to put that right pretty soon. It's the right time of year to do it, for sure!