The long grey winter months may finally be over!

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Is it me or does anyone else think the winter months have really dragged this year?    Yes we have had more snowy periods than the previous year, but its still been reasonable temperatures! I don’t think its been overly cold, just grey and wet.

I was fortunate as I went to South Africa in November but apart from that I don’t think  I have seen the sun since about September last year.   With the long dark nights, apart from walking my dogs, I really don’t have the enthusiasm to do anything.  The garden is neglected, the car needs a wash and those planned walks in the countryside just a pipe dream.  The food I’m cooking is warm and hearty, but I’m longing for the steak cooked on open coals, sitting on my bench with a nice cold glass of Slimline wine.  It seems such a long time since I did that!

You go outside, your neighbours are all tucked up indoors, people and more grumpy and hurrying to get back in the warm and dry!  Such a depressing time.

Then yesterday something magical happened!  The sun came out!  17 degrees was recorded on my car temperature gauge! Its like a switch has been pressed.   You wake up eager to get out of bed.  You want to walk the dogs a little further!  The garden suddenly looks so inviting.   You head for the garage and dust off all those tools that have been in the corner all winter.  You head out with excitement!   And there under the dead leaves, as you clear them away you see the new shoots of spring!  Bulbs coming into flower!  Plants that have died off starting to push their way back through the soil. You go out the front to weed the borders and you have neighbours coming out of hibernation too!  You all wave to each other and suddenly we all have time to stop and talk.  Its like time had stopped still for 6 months and you want to go out and celebrate this new found freedom!

How many of you also felt like this yesterday?  It is amazing how just a little bit of sunshine can make you feel so much better.    My husband and I like so many other people were so invigorated yesterday.  We were up early, took the dogs for a walk without wearing a coat.  It was just so exciting.  Our lawn mover had died last year and we hadn’t bothered getting a new one, but now it seemed really important that we hit the DIY shop and get one.  We had our usual cooked breakfast – for my hubby that is bacon, eggs and sausages, for me an omelette made with spinach and tomatoes with vegetarian sausages, all free.  We were then set up for the day.  Off we went to Homebase.

We walked in and immediately saw the lawn mower we wanted and put it straight into the trolley.  We should have just left, but the sun is out and we are feeling good so pop out to the garden centre section.  We start looking at all the plants and decide we must get another Acer to replace the one Lola ate the previous year.  Sadly they didn’t have any but we are so inspired to do some gardening, we buy some other plants!

We get back in the car and decide that we should maybe try another garden centre, so off we go to Charlecote Garden Centre.  We have a look around but still can’t find the Acer we are looking for, so the sun is still shining, it would be a waste not to go to another garden centre!   I mean – 3 in one day just for 1 plant!  Its like the sun has drugged you!  The 3rd one though does have what we want.  We are again just wandering around and start looking at things to attract birds into the garden.   We don’t see anything specifically but we do eye a big bag of bulbs to attract the bees.  Well it would be rude to not give the bees a reason to come into the garden.

Isn’t it funny how a week ago, we wouldn’t have dreamt that we would have a day out shopping for the garden.  It would be more clothes, shoes etc!

We decide that time is getting on and perhaps we should go home and start on the garden.

With a heavy heart I have to leave my husband to start the garden without me, as the house also needs cleaning!  I’m jealous that he gets to be outside while i’m inside!  I’ve got my shorts on though and at least it gives me a reason to get the housework done quickly!

After 2 hours of housework, I’m so excited to get outside and join him.

Last year I bought myself a little greenhouse.  It was only a cheap little thing as we weren’t sure if anything would grow in there.  It was a great success so this year I decided to plant more things.  This year I’m doing lettuce again – this was a great go to product last year, tomatoes, peppers, courgettes, peppers, beans and 3 different garden plants to bring a bit of colour to the borders!

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I bought myself 3 miniature fruit trees this year.  2 apple, 1 pear.  Its going to be a challenge keeping Lola way from them until they grow big enough!

Then I potter around in the borders.  I  had planted some bulbs when we first did the garden a couple of years ago,  along with some shrubs.  Looking around I find quite a few that were now overshadowed by shrubs, so I rescued them and moved them to other parts of the garden so they could grow and flower.

Then its checking out the damage Lola has done!  Our beautiful fuschia plant isn’t doing much.  It looks quite big until I realise that Lola has chewed most of the branches off lower down!  Thankfully she didn’t get to all the branches, so it has a chance!

I sit on my little bench soaking in the sun looking around at my garden.  I feel so happy today!  I’ve been working away all day without a care in the world.  I haven’t even felt like I’ve been exercising, but I have!  I’ve burnt off calories without even thinking about it.

I’m thinking about the week ahead which promises to be even warmer – up to 23 degrees!  Maybe that braai (BBQ) will be out this week.  Steaks, prawns, salmon are now the key ingredients for my meals.  I’m thinking of recipes that will go with them which are Slimming World friendly and tasty!    I’m no longer thinking of carbs and casseroles!  Its braai braai braai!

Welcome finally to spring and I’m so looking forward to summer!   Now to get my summer body ready, but I’m more motivated to get out and exercise.  Why because the sun is out!

 

 

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