February recap and looking forward

Another month of Lockdown and it seems there is a little more light appearing every day (both physically and metaphorically). Here in my corner of the world it has been a month of loss as well as recovery. Emotions have been high and yet again books, amongst other things, have been a welcome distraction for my mind. There is peace to be found if we seek it.

Walking

My walks this month have been plentiful. We are unable to travel outside of our local area and so I have stayed close to home and firmly on foot rather than exploring further afield.

I am lucky that within just a few minutes walk I can escape to an area of woodland. It allows me to feel that I am living somewhere a little more rural (a dream of mine) and takes me away from the concrete streets that surround us. The weather has been something of a mixed bag. We had snow for about a week. A small amount by many standards but enough to cover the ground and for a while it was cold enough to add a layer of ice over the lake. I am always amazed by the difference snow and frost bring to the landscape. Heavy, snow-filled clouds diffuse the light, making it softer somehow. The snow brings a silence to the air that I find incredibly calming, especially when a step then brings such a satisfying crunch.

Nature

Being home so much means I am able to see the many birds that visit our garden. We have a variety of feeders in the garden and my neighbour also has some out the front of the house. During the snow our ‘take out’ stations were very busy. It is an especially important time to leave out food and so I delved a little deeper to see what our visitors might enjoy.

We mainly have house sparrows, blackbirds, robins, blue tits, great tits, wrens and chaffinchs coming to the garden. The house sparrows love the hanging feeders filled with seed and fat balls. I did discover that blackbirds and robins prefer to feed from the ground as they are unable to hang on to the feeders. Of course frozen and snow covered ground is not the best place to find a good juicy worm and so a little assistance is most welcome. I scattered some seed on the ground, along with uncooked oats and apples cut in half. The apples especially were very much appreciated and I, on many occasions enjoyed watching the wary visitors tucking in. (I say wary as we have a cat – thankfully she doesn’t seem to enjoy the cold and wet but does enjoy watching them from the sitting room window).

A picture paints a thousand words

I have been watching episodes of Sky Arts Landscape Painter of the year. I find being able to travel (via the tv) to the stunning locations good for the soul and I also love watching the artists work. The many different styles and techniques are inspiring and again it has encouraged me to pick up my brushes.

There is a particular tree across the road from our house that has caught my attention. I see it when I look out of my kitchen window. I find the shape interesting and it feels like there is a history there. In these winter months it looks particularly architectural. The shape of the branches with nothing to hide behind. I was drawn to capture it and for me, there is a sinister edge to it that particularly suits the light at this time of year.

My amateur effort. I’m still working on it but it’s nearly done.

and here’s the actual tree capture by camera (and with snow)

A stitch in time

I am still sewing away. This month I have been mostly working on a cross stitch kit of Van Gogh’s Starry Night. It is a large project but I am pleased with my progress. I love watching the image begin to appear as I add stitch after stitch. I have also started work on a new pattern taken from Love Embroidery magazine. It is a gorgeous image of an allotment scene designed by Georgie Emery.

Books and more

I have been enjoying stories greatly this month, reading, writing, listening and watching.

Audiobooks are a wonderful accompaniment to a solitary walk, an embroidery session or even whilst trying to still a restless mind at bedtime.

I am currently enjoying three

The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman – curtsy of BBC sounds.

Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantle – read by Dan Stevens, I purchased the entire trilogy from Audible. This will provide me with over 27 (check) hours of listening time!

Growing Season by Seni Gleister – an audiobook I received from HQ Stories ahead of a blog tour I am taking part in next month. I absolutely loved reading the book last year and so it’s a joy to return to it again in this format. (The paperback edition will be published in March.)

I have also been reading some wonderful books too. Here is a wee snapshot.

Currently Reading
Still on my reading list…

And looking towards March…

Another busy reading month awaits.

Thank you for visiting at the end of another fantastic month for books and stories. I have even shared a little flash fiction of my own. Why not take a peek before you go. Click the link to read Propeller by Shelley Fallows

Stay safe and I hope you have a fabulous March.

Come back and visit again soon.

Shelley x

PS.If you’ve enjoyed your visit and would like to buy me a cuppa (or help with my running costs) then please click the ‘Support This Blog’ button in the right hand column. Every little helps me to keep this blog ad free. No annoying pop ups! :).



Categories: Catch Up

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