Time to breathe (see my last post - or, more specifically, some of the very welcome - and wise - comments).
Time to escape into the woods. To notice those little (to quote an Instagram hashtag) Flashes of Delight.
My work obligations have been met following a mad scramble on Thursday afternoon. Things can now slow down. Well, sort of. We've been painting the new house and despite my initial ideas of taking a Scandinavian approach (all white, to maximise light) we decided to be brave. We've gone for colour. Pictures will follow.
Back to some October delights though. We've been out walking, Joe and I. Collecting the few conkers we can find. Looking for funghi. Paddling in streams. Wandering along, sticks in hand, kicking through the leaves.
Munching on chocolate (him) and yet more treacle toffee (me). To keep the cold out.
Dropping sycamore keys from a height and watching them spin down to the ground.
We've been eating good, hearty food - the kind that can be left to bubble away in the oven for a couple of hours or longer. Food that welcomes you back into a warm, delicious-smelling kitchen.
There's an almost constant aroma of woodsmoke in the air. I can't get enough of it - one of my favourite things about autumn.
We've been watching the Sky Arts Landscape Artist of the Year. Yes, there are bits of pretentiousness here and there. But there's something very relaxing about observing people painting National Trust properties.
I've recently discovered a few new delights of the alcoholic variety. Firstly (after an evening here): Fitzpatrick's cordials with gin and a splash of lemonade. The Rhubarb and Rosehip was sublime. And at home, alcoholic ginger beer. Yes I drink things that taste like pop. No I'm not sophisticated enough to like wine. Apart from mulled wine - and I'm trying to save that for another few weeks or so yet. Maybe bonfire night.
There are chestnuts and black peas for sale at the Saturday morning market. And pomegranates and English apples.
The hedgerow jelly I made a few weeks ago makes lovely jam tarts. Just imagine that the pastry's a bit thinner and that the edges are suitably fluted...
Now the art work's slowed down again I'm putting in the hours at the new house next week. Friends and family have volunteered to either take Joe or to come and help with the painting. The kitchen's going in, the bathroom the week after. And the new windows have made a huge difference already. The dwindling budget means I'll have to get creative with furnishings but I like the challenge.
On Friday night we have a Halloween party at the cricket club. Just like last year, Joe has no costume yet. Looks like I'll need to get creative with that too.
Lastly: thank you again for your kind words and sage advice regarding the Worry Cure. I hope the comments are useful to others too. Blog Land may be a virtual one but it does offer some real empathy and advice through the people who write and visit blogs.
I hope you have a good week as we hurtle towards the end of October.