Yesterday morning, after I had dropped my little boy at playgroup, I decided to pop down the road to the beach. The weather was bitterly cold with a nippy wind, but that sunshine was too good to resist. On this particular day there was a fair amount of mud and even though this path runs alongside farm land and is nearly always muddy, my spur of the moment decision meant that I was completely unprepared in the footwear department! Luckily on my way towards the beach the mud was completely frozen, so I managed to negotiate it pretty easily, however the journey back wasn’t quite as easy as it had started to melt by this point. I ended up walking so slowly to avoid slipping over, I’m sure I looked hilarious!
This is a route I have walked lots of times before as it is very close to where my husband grew up and indeed where his mum still lives. I have memories of us as teenagers walking these paths together, oh how time flies! This particular field is mainly covered in grass at the moment, but during the growing season it’s usually filled with crops.
As I made my way through the mud I started to notice that as the ice was melting it was making these beautiful shapes. What do you see in the picture above (apart from a whole lot of mud of course)? I noticed that one of the pieces looked a bit like a feather… or maybe a leaf?
I have lived near the coast for nearly all of my life and must have had hundreds of trips to the coast, but I still get a jolt of excitement when I get that first glimpse of the sea in the distance. It’s almost an instant thing that as soon as I’m there I feel all the tension and stress of everyday life leave my body, I’ll never get bored of that feeling!
I spent a lovely hour wandering along this beach, soaking in the sun and watching the wildlife (there are usually some interesting birds around here, but I didn’t manage to get any good photos of them). I am trying to make a conscious effort to have more mindful moments like this in my day, where I just take some time out to reset. We could all do with remembering to do this sometimes, I think.
Oh how I have been enjoying these sweet little flowers of late. January was a tricky month for me this year, over and above it being grey and damp and rainy and generally January-ish, this year came with some extra struggles. I have been on a long and very tricky mental health journey for the past 10 years of my life and over the last year I decided to concentrate on getting better – no distractions and no more avoidance of how I have been feeling. It was a difficult decision to make and came with some sacrifices for sure, but I know it was right to focus on taking everything apart piece by piece in the hope that I can be rebuilt in a better way by the end of the process. It’s all been pretty hard, but January was the hardest, I hit some places that I haven’t been in a while. But oh my goodness, February already feels like it’s going to be so much better… it’s still winter I know, but there’s a subtle hint that spring is around the corner…
It goes without saying of course, that craft has been a huge part of this process, for giving me a much needed colour injection, for switching off my brain and for generally allowing me some time to be myself. It always amazes me how many people I have met both online and in person who use craft of all kinds to help them deal with both mental and physical illness. The above picture is my rainbow granny blanket which I have recently decided to work on again, the repetitive motion of the granny square never fails to soothe the soul.
I have also been doing a bit of knitting which I have to say I have really enjoyed. I used to be pretty good with two sticks (although I have never been able to conquer socks!), but it’s been a while since I’ve worked with them so I thought a simple garter stitch shawl was just what I needed. Rather excitingly I am using my own hand dyed yarn here, a green and purple mix which ended up having some blue and grey hues too. It’s so soft and squishy (It’s a DK weight yarn) and is working up really well into a nice wide triangle scarf. I’m planning to add a crochet border to it too for a pretty finish and because my knitting skills are not up to the challenge!
I also had the idea for this snuggly purple and green chunky poncho pop into my head during January. I had bought this lovely Hobbycraft yarn a while ago and it has just sat on the shelf waiting for the perfect project to come along ever since. I’m really pleased with how it has turned out, it’s exactly how I had imagined it and it’s super warm and comfortable to wear.
Thanks for reading my little crafty catch up, I’ll be back soon xx