ALLOTMENT- the start of a new year

It was such a joy to get stuck back into the allotment today. Stupidly I forgot to take before photos but imagine a slightly less wilderness version of last year.

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WALK – Back on the canal

Hello old friend,

It’s good to be back. I’ve missed you.

This evening I took a stroll along the Leeds Liverpool canal. My first such stroll in the last few years. I’d forgotten how restorative and peaceful it is.

City sounds have never really bothered me. Traffic, mobiles, trains and planes – I’ve perfected that filter that reduces them to a background hum.

Perhaps because of that, I really hear the quiet. Though that’s not quite the right word – the canal is still and calming but it’s never truly quiet.

Just a moments walk away from the city and it’s birdsong and splashing and bicycle bells that fill the air.

Today is the first day that really feels like winter is rolling back and becoming spring. Everything looks so vivid and ready. And the light is just magical.

I feel like I’m home…walk wise.

WALK – St Stephens Day at Ardsley Reservoir

With our tummies still full from yesterday’s feast; Danielle, lil B and myself decided that a gentle walk was in order.

We headed to East Ardsley Reservoir as it was beautifully local (and traffic was wild due to today’s match – Go Leeds!).

It’s a roughly 2km route, very easy, accessible and with parking. Huzzah!

Wonderfully watery weather

Auntie Niamh doesn’t fancy a walk in the mud, actually

We were delighted to hear all the variants of bird song and even caught sight of a red-breast robin, several ducks and geese and an ominous gathering of crows (a *murder* of crows!).

Most importantly, we were out in the world.

A lovely afternoon

MUSICAL MUSINGS – The ‘Becoming Neevil’ Years

{This post was found unpublished in the archives. Not sure why I didn’t post it – presumably I had more to add. But as that appears unlikely – here you go}

First song I remember my dad singing to me:

Fair Rosa – an Irish sleeping beauty fairy tale.

This is not my dad. This is a lady from youtube.

First song that made me cry:

Puff the magic dragon

(Mind you, I was by no means the only person that has an unexpected emotional response to this song. When I was about 12 years old; some family friends popped over for dinner and a natter. They brought with them their beautiful little girl. When I stuck my loyal and trusty tape into the player; her father – a BFG of a man – burst into tears. He hadn’t heard the song in years and and ended up having his own formative years flashback. Naturally, he ended up leaving with the cassette! )

First album I learned by heart: 

The Simpsons – Sing the Blues

First Album I bought for myself:

The Lion King Soundtrack (AND IT’S STILL PERFECT!!!)

First Album Crush:

The drama of Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours just captured my imagination and my heart. Stevie Nicks remains a constant fascination to this day.

ALLOTMENT – Cinnabar Moth Caterpillar

Last week we were very excited to spot quite of few of these little guys on (what we later identified as) ragwort plants.

Look at how similar our little buddy is to the example picture!!

To visit the page, click HERE

Last year, the allotment was a wonderful escape, but hard work.

This year, it’s bringing so much joy (and even the work seems more…I don’t quite know the right word…purposeful?). Every time I visit, there’s a new delight!

ALLOTMENT – Berry Good

July brought berries!

Loganberries, raspberries, strawberries (wild ones too!) and blackberries!

HOME TOURIST – Flowers in Fewston

I’ve treated myself to a day off work and headed out for a walk around Fewston Reservoir.

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HOME TOURIST – Walking in Emley – Part 2

Well, it’s been a little while since I’ve updated the blog. It’s also been far too long since I’ve been out and about, exploring the places I find myself and sharing beautiful spots.

Sometimes, when a hobby has been allowed to fall fallow; it ends up being easier/better to leave it be. In this case though, I have hugely missed my wanderings and indeed my little write ups and conversations with you all via the blog.

So when Jess (@BookElfLeeds) suggested a mini-mission – to try to source out a few walks that could potentially be used by her Brownie group as a field trip – I jumped at the chance!

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POETRY – The Invitation by Oriah Mountain Dreamer



It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.

It doesn’t interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dream, for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon. I want to know if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow, if you have been opened by life’s betrayals or have become shrivelled and closed from fear of further pain.

I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide it, or fade it, or fix it.

I want to know if you can be with joy, mine or your own; if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful, be realistic, remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself. If you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul. If you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty even when it is not pretty every day. And if you can source your own life from its presence.

I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine, and still stand at the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, ‘Yes.’

It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after the night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone and do what needs to be done to feed the children.

It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the centre of the fire with me and not shrink back.

It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you from the inside when all else falls away.

I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.

How Society Destroys Your Creativity, In An Award-Winning Pixar-Like Short Film | Bored Panda

Just beautiful.