On Monday morning I woke up feeling just a smidgeon brighter that I have done in quite a while. So after the school drop off I decided to try and manage a short walk, just a gentle stroll up the high street, past the castle.......
....and on past the small sheep field. All of a sudden the sun broke through the clouds and I was so happy to see those shafts of soft light making their way to me through the trees, oh so welcome on this rather cold, gloomy February morning. I carried on walking, slowly, slowly, only a gentle hill but my body doesn't really allow me to do hills at the moment. Shuffle, shuffle, not too much further.....
I love visiting this little patch every Winter, it's a small wild area where the very edge of the woods meets the road into the top of town.
Snowdrops are such unusual little flowers when you stop to look closely at them, and the effect of them carpeting the leafy ground in the depths of winter is stunning.
Truthfully, I would loved to have picked a few little sweet flowers to bring home with me. I could picture them all dainty in a teeny tiny little glass jar, nodding their sweet white heads and bringing me oodles of pleasure. But I know these are naughty thoughts and so I made myself content with capturing them on my camera.
I loitered around the wild patch at the side of the road, at the edge of the woods for quite a while, walking this way and that, pointing my camera, trying to capture the beauty of snowdrops-in-the-sunshine. I leaned over the fence, crouched down and stuck my arms through the fence. And then I straightened up and stood very still for a while, working out how my body was feeling, trying to decide what to do. Turn around and head back down into town? Or walk onwards and follow the pathway into the woodland?
I turned my back on the pavement and chose the muddy pathway, following this gloriously mossy stone wall which forms the top boundary of the woodland.
I am completely, crushingly in love with moss, and when I see it growing so joyfully over every standing-still brown thing, my heart honestly feels like it might implode with gladness. These vibrant green mounds take the edge off the pervading brown-ness of the winter woodland, they are just so full of life! I love it when moss shoots up these ultra-cute little things (what are they? Moss flowers? Moss seedheads? I want to know all about mossy goings on!), well I love those little shooty-up things most of all.
Ahh, here is the waterfall in the middle of the woodland - please note that I appear to be up above it rather than down beside it on the path there like I normally am. That would be because I managed to get myself completely lost following the mossy path, neglecting to turn at the point where I should have turned. I walked on and on and on, and it was raining, and my beloved red boots became caked in mud. I do not possess any sense of direction, the place in my brain where there should be a logical compass is just an empty space. I think I walked around the edge of the soggy woodland for about an hour until eventually, I ended up at a point that I recognised. It was waaaaay off the pathway that I should have been on, but at least it was familiar and I was able to descend down the steep bank and pretend that I was never, ever lost at all. Just taking the scenic route.
I was very, very tired by this point, my legs had decided to mimic the tree trunks and turn themselves into lumps of wood.
But it had been such a lovely little unplanned walk, and the memories of the snowdrop carpet and mossy walls and tumbling water stayed with me as I made my way slowly home.
The homeward route from the woods conveniently goes right past the local Bakery which has a brass door handle in he shape of a croissant. I decided that the only treatment for Wooden Leg Syndrome is a soft iced bun popped into a paper bag, and carried carefully home so that it can accompany a mug of steaming hot coffee. It worked a treat. Whilst I was sipping my coffee and scoffing my bun, I thought about the snowdrops all over again, and it reminded me about the calendar that hangs next to my desk....
....this lovely calendar was a free gift last year with one of my favourite magazines - Country Home and Interiors. I've been a subscriber to this magazine for almost a decade, and I can tell you that in recent years it has consistently provided me with a huge amount of inspirational, seasonal visual pleasure. The free annual calendar has also given me a lot of pleasure over the years - those of you who've been visiting me here for a while may remember my years of "Calendar Posts" where each month I would share seasonal images from my various calendars? The Country Homes calendar was always known as the Bossy Calendar, as each image was usually accompanied by a command to do something or other. It did used to make me laugh.
This year, the theme is country flowers, and I thoroughly approve of charting the months in this way. How lovely! The photos are beautiful, and the text for each month is as charmingly bossy as ever.
So here we have January, which features the humble snowdrop and the following command >
"At the start of the year, bring bunches of velvety white snowdrops inside from the garden to display alongside glowing candlelight."
Oh, ok then! Excepting that I don't have bunches of snowdrops growing in my garden. I don't have a garden which grows bunches of anything really. And I couldn't bring myself to steal even one single stem of a snowdrop from the wild patch at the edge of the woods. I shall just have to make do with pictures instead.....
....these beautiful pages are from last months Country Living magazine (Feb).
Oh just look at those delightful mossy pots! I really wish I had some mossy posts and pretty snowdrops of my own.
These sweet little flowers fill me with delight, and even though the colours on these pages are very pale and muted, they are just so right for this time of year. I do love a spot of seasonal colour.
I was inspired to have a little play with my yarn pegs and channel some inner winter snowdrop vibes. Mmmm...very restful and calming, wouldn't you say? A pretty Winter palette for January.
Mind you, seeing as we are now into February, I'll have to think up something floral and Februaryish to share with you now. You never know, I might even obey the Bossy Calendar this month, there is an instruction to go and look for paperwhite narcissus.......