Lifting the Spirits 004

Midwinter is over.

For many the celebration of Christmas has begun.

Last minute frenetic shopping today and tomorrow…

The days here at Bealtaine are beginning to lengthen.

Not tangible as yet, but optimism for more daylight has taken hold and sometimes that is enough…simply knowing that the darkness has passed.

The cottage remains in a post-midwinter party state, with chairs pushed back and floor-space revealed.

It may be a day or two before this is sorted, for I want to escape outdoors, despite the stormy weather! 001

The lush greenery on the mantelpiece will stay in place for as long as it retains life.

Replacing the candles daily is a small task and keeps the soft light there to lift the spirits. 002

A small sadness pervades the air, now that family and friends have gone.

We all enjoyed the coming together of our midwinter feast, with music and bonfire and soft candlelight…a magical time that lifted the spirit. 005

Rich food and drink will now give way to simple soups and tea…a sort of cleansing of the palette and system, together with late winter walks, to appease the feasting of recent days. 013

Venturing out this morning, into the wind-driven rain, fresh in from the Atlantic, amid the sounds of birds fighting over food…time to scatter the scraps from the feast around the gravel by the cottage for my hungry and cold feathered friends. 006

Parsley, Kale and Chard all continue to grow abundantly in the Potager beds…no sign of prolonged frost to diminish these green gifts. 007

The Chard is particularly beneficial to the body at this time of year, as it contains generous amounts of both Vitamin C and Iron…the Vitamin C is necessary for the body to absorb the Iron. 008

I use the Kale in the juicer each day…a great supplement to my diet, as it charges my energy! 009

Do you recall the ground I mulched with cardboard and shreddings?

Well, here it is this morning and as you can see it has now transformed itself into a bed ready to be planted out in the Spring…how easy was that?

There are several hundred blogs on this website about mulching and preparing ground for planting using the easiest methods that I have tried and tested.

To access them simply type key words into the Search Bar at the top of this page!


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  1. lovely post Colette, sums up exactly how I am feeling today….I too am continuing lighting candles and thinking of family who have left… such a joyful time was had but ending too soon as everyone goes there separate ways – but I am so grateful for such wonderful family and count my blessings daily. may I wish you a joyous peaceful year and thank you deeply for your inspiring posts – all the best xx

  2. Continued blessings to you in this new year! I will be mulching today, in fact, as I’ve still not managed to clear the driveway of the last of 6 truckloads of wood mulch and leaves. We need the space for the extra cars of family visiting later this week. Your seeds arrived last week. I shall be thinking of them and the beautiful plants they’ll grow as I haul miles of mulch before I sleep. Well, not quite that much … but it’s all about preparing the ground for those lovely seeds! Thanks for sharing so much beauty and inspiration with this world … and for posting a timely “mulch” post to get me off the computer and outside. 🙂

  3. Colette,
    Thank you so such and inspiring blog, the parsley looks so good. You have made such a difference in so many lives, I hope that the New Year brings you all you desire. Blessings to you

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