We have been having some gorgeous spring weather over the past few days. There has been the odd shower too but I have still been very much cheered up by the sunshine.
I am spending a lot of time in the studio at the moment but I gave myself some time off over the weekend and on Saturday afternoon – despite the fact that I could see that rain would be moving in before too long – I couldn’t resist throwing a book and sketchbook into my satchel and heading out into the ponies’ field. I spread my blanket under a tree and spent a very happy hour reading and sketching. It was lovely.
Naturally I had been right about the rain and it did eventually turn up. Not that it drove me straight in. I could cope with the light rain but a downpour was just too much and I scurried back inside.
I have been seeing a great many posts about the death of Beverly Cleary last week which have made me want to revisit her Ramona Quimby books. I got the audiobooks of these from the library so often that I can still hear the narrator’s voice in my head. I would have loved to get hold of the audiobooks now but sadly they don’t seem to be available in the UK. I do however have two of the books on my shelf and I raced through those on Sunday.
It is amazing how the memory works. Some of the scenes in these two are so vivid – I especially remember Beezus drawing a horse with wings (although I think this scene is actually in Beezus and Ramona) but a lot of these books felt as if I was reading them for the first time (I definitely wasn’t!). I had a lovely, nostalgic wallow in them and would love to get my hands on more.
All in all, it was a pretty wonderful weekend.
I have never been able to decide which I prefer – sitting outside with my book in the summer or curling up with it by the fire in the winter. At the moment I can just about get away with doing both – it has been very warm today and lovely to sit outside but the evenings have been cool enough for a fire still.
Even though the evening fires may end soon I have the comfort of knowing that I am helping to build up our store of logs for next winter’s fires. Since I am obviously not at work at the moment I am spending my time helping my parents out with the work on our fields (which are at home so we can carry on without breaking any social isolation rules).
Specifically we have been doing a lot of work on the hedges – brambles have been pulled out and a few trees which had got out of hand have been felled. The log store – which had been getting rather empty – is starting to fill up once more. Of course, these logs won’t be burnable for a year or so but it is good to know that they will be there and ready when we want them.
The apple blossom is out in full force here and it is this time of year more than any other which makes me want to revisit the Betsy-Tacy books by Maud Hart Lovelace.
I read these for the first time only two years ago as part of a readalong on Instagram. I had never even heard of the books before but was told that they were perfect for fans of L M Montgomery and I am definitely one of those! The readalong only covered the later books in the series – those set in high school or after – although I did go back and read the earlier books afterwards.
I adored the books so much. For me they are the perfect blend of sweetness and sorrow and reading them sucks me into Betsy-Tacy’s world. There are ten books in the series which follows Betsy and Tacy from the age of five until they are married. Three more books are set in the same town and feature a great many of the same characters including Besty. I gobbled them up in no time (I wish there were more!) and they are definitely right up there with Anne of Green Gables for me.
These books are perfect for anyone who loves L M Montgomery or the Little House on the Prairie series and I would thoroughly recommend hunting them out. Now I just need to find something similar – recommendations are always welcome!
We have been having some simply glorious weather for the past few days. We have had some cold days too of course – it is only April after all – but definitely a good proportion of the time has been sunny.
Days like this make me want to escape outside as much as possible and whilst I was at Halsway Manor last week I took full advantage of the free time on offer to explore the grounds and neighbouring countryside. I found the loveliest disused tennis court complete with the most amazing view and a tumbledown pavillion. There was even a beautiful set of steps just right for sitting and reading.
I also went some way up the hill beind the house. My seat of choice up there was a tree in the hedgeline. I don’t think I’ll ever grow out of wanting to climb trees! I didn’t manage to get a picture of myself up the tree but I can show you the view which was magnificent.
It was the most wonderful place to while away a few hours.
Spring is springing!
We have had a glorious few days of the most beautiful sunshine and it has been marvellous. Things always look so much better when the sun shines.
For me, one of the best things is being able to read outside again. There is nothing quite like it and it makes me so happy that I’ve been able to do so this week.
I had to wrap up warm and my fingers went numb but it was still wonderful.
Of course, as I write this there is an absolute deluge of hail outside and I am curled up by the fire. That is lovely too!