As I sit here in the office with a nice cup of tea gently steaming beside me I hoped to describe the bucolic scene outside the window. Unfortunately I can hardly see out of the window due to it been covered in thick rain drops as we are experiencing some rather stormy weather this morning, albeit calming slightly compared to how Mother Nature was feeling in the early hours as the wind blew and the rain lashed down, someone was a little angry. Messrs Lishman had quite a challenging morning retrieving mobile objects blowing around and securing other wayward items. I have never been a lover of the wind as it makes me quite agitated, I have similar issues with the Full Moon, but that is another story!!

However, back to the new beginnings, I shall not digress as that is my thought for today. Thankfully the evenings are just starting to draw out a little more, just that little extra day light makes all the difference. Every day something new pops up in the garden and the Snowdrops, brave little soldiers they are make a lovely show. I do think nature is amazing, everything has a purpose and there is a purpose for everything. Last year for example we had an incredible crop of cooking apples. However despite giving loads away the orchard was still carpeted in them. A few weeks ago I intended to rake them up as the regular birds that visit my garden seemed to have lost interest. This job did not get done and during a very cold snap with snow a couple of weeks ago the Fieldfares popped by and dined for days on this harvest, there must have been well over a hundred of these rather plump winter thrushes at anyone time, a lovely sight and all the apples are now gone!

On the farm the Boys are still in the throws of the winter routine but thoughts have turned to spring as new fencing has been done and to compliment this Ian actually went and purchased five new gates, all looking very smart and they swing, a miracle!! Hopefully the fodder will see them through until the ‘Ladies’ go out to graze in mid March to April depending on the weather. Ian and Richard were very lucky and mangaged despite the challenging growing conditions last year to get a reasonable crop, some were less fortunate and are having to buy in food at very high prices.

My husband thinks I have an issue with food and the amount of freezers we have with supplies in them. Well my answer to this Mr Lishman is I like to always have some in reserve and yes I do like to look after anyone who sits at our table well. I did perhaps go a little over the top prior to Christmas and bought a 56lb bag of potatoes which was fine and most useful during the period of festive enteraining but we are still ploughing through and will be for sometime. I believe this habit came from my Mother who in the winter months always made sure there were a few basic staples in stock in case it snowed and we did live down a long lane and we could be blocked in for days at a time, back in the day! I perhaps do make work for myself but quite simply I enjoy cooking and providing.

My latest exploit is making yoghurt and I have to say so far so good, albeit ably assisted by a yoghurt making machine, yet another gadget on the kitchen work surface along side the new food processor which I have to say has produced some rather good cakes recently.

A lot of people I speak to at the moment are craving something calorific as the weather is cold and a plate of salad leaves just doesn’t appeal at all. Our bodies need good heart warming sustenance to see us through the winter months and then by all means bring out the salad, Quinoa etc but for now, no thank you.

My ramblings must stop here as believe it or not it is lunch time!!!!!!!!!!

Take care x