Courgette and Mosquito living their best winter life – they are no longer barn cats but breezeway cats – since Caesar’s departure, they have moved into the breezeway.

Life is slow this time of year – and the past couple of days of snow have made the wood stove and all of the food that we have ‘put by’ seem extremely luxurious. There’s status luxury and then there’s the luxury of well seasoned hard wood, heirloom canned tomatoes, your own dried beans and some homemade nocino. There are seeds to order (done), garden and greenhouse timeline to plan (in the works). I love crunching the numbers and calculating the season gone by and am always a little chuffed by how much we got done. The summer always seems a little inconceivable in the winter – these days I make food, do the dishes and tidy up a bit…and it’s like 7 hours later. How in the world do I do all those things AND manage the garden and greenhouse? Right now it’s mildly amusing but every year without fail I have a minor meltdown about it in April. I was complaining about it to a farmer friend last year and she was said – Look – the days are longer, your house will be a little dirtier and your meals will be more simple. You’ve done it before, it will be fine. And she was right. It’s just a different aspect of the seasons.

Sipping soup (using up the last of the squash, with rich chicken broth), garden planning.