Winter is a strange season as it bridges the gap between the year’s polar opposites. While spring, summer and autumn all have a unique flavour that is usually predictable from beginning to end, winter embraces many emotions and characters. It is the only season where the mood and mindset change dramatically in the middle. At the beginning, the warmth, hope and joy of Christmas are all-consuming and they wrap up the year, offering time to reflect on the highs and lows of the past 12 months. But the season’s end welcomes in a New Year which, although cold and often marked by post-Christmas blues, is also ripe with possibility. For me, January often ends up as a strange month without any discernable purpose, so if you’re like me, here are some ways to stay in the moment through the whole of this coming winter.
Food & Drink: Toffee nut latte with chocolate hazelnut loaf
Bake:Snickerdoodles & Pflaumenkuchen
Places to visit: Germany
Play in the snow (if we get any!)
Do some Christmas crafts – most of mine involve Cinnamon sticks!
Watch lots of movies: The Holiday, Miracle on 34th Street, Muppet’s Christmas Carol, It’s a Wonderful Life, Love Actually
Experience a Christmas market – Köln Weihnachtsmarkt is just perfect
Buy a calendar for the New Year
Start on some New Year goals – make plans for the year, book tickets to shows and search out new restaurants
Go to a museum – it’s low season in January so much quieter and you can take your time
Go to coffee shops and watch the world go by
Have a long hot bath with candles and a good book
Prepare for spring – get ahead of the game with a pre-spring clearout
Make the most of the slower pace of life by sipping wine (or, my preference, G&T) late into the night with friends, dreaming about what the year ahead might bring
Winter may be the odd season out, but it can still bring joy if you live it in the moment!
My favourite season of all is fast approaching. For me, Autumn (September to November) is the perfect temperature, the perfect speed of life and the anniversary of me meeting my hubby. For me, Autumn is synonymous with joy. If you’ve lived life in the moment in spring and summer, here are a few ways to make sure the delight of this new season doesn’t pass you by.
Splash in puddles (who says this has to be confined to spring?)
Wake up early and go for a sunrise walk
Drink Baileys hot chocolate while watching November 5th fireworks
Gather acorns and pine cones ready for Christmas decorations
Take a photo surrounded by Autumn leaves – or throw them in the air!
Probably because a school calendar is hardwired in my brain, Autumn for me is still a time for new beginnings, a hopeful fresh start as the temperature too becomes fresher. We’ll see if any new challenges or opportunities arise for this favoured season.
The air is changing again, this time to a hopefully warmer climate with long days of sunshine and seemingly endless hours to relax and soak up some much needed Vitamin D. Just like spring, there are ways to enjoy this season (which I consider as June to August) that are unique to the characteristics it brings on its breeze, so even if you’re not off on a summer holiday, here are some ways you can make the most of this summer.
Food & Drink:Pimms, cider, salads and BBQs of course!
Bake:Grasshopper pie for Wimbledon or an avocado chocolate cake
Places to visit: Colorado
Go for a long walk at dusk
Make Sprite floats… or Coca-Cola floats if you prefer
I adore the seasons, all of them, even if my favourite is Autumn. I love that just as one season is coming to an end, I’m perfectly ready for the new one to arrive. The change is good for me; I am refreshed by the shift in the air, the temperature, the mood and all that they represent.
I always try to make the most of what makes each season unique, so as spring approaches (and to me, spring is March-May), here are a few ways to make sure spring and all that it brings, is enjoyed in the moment.
Food & Drink: Elderflower cordial on a picnic
Bake: Mini-egg cupcakes & creme egg brownies
Places to visit: Northern Ireland, New York and Paris
Decorate the house with tulips and daffodils
Go to see some lambs
Visit a garden centre and plant something new in a windowsill box
Take a photo under a cherry blossom tree
Empty your handbag and restock only with what you need, not what you’ve accumulated!
When we got married three years ago, a lot of people asked us: “So, how is married life? Is it just wonderful? Are you excited?” To which, more often than not, I responded, “It’s great. It’s… normal.”
I didn’t mean that it wasn’t wonderful and exciting, but that it was something even better than that, it was perfectly natural. We had seamlessly transitioned into our new lives with each other and it felt wonderful to be so completely comfortable and at home with the man I married. Normal was good. It, in itself, was exciting, in a way that was so far beyond the ‘jump up and down’ sort of excitement.
Yesterday another big change came on my horizon and when friends asked how I felt, I responded that I was still processing (I’m an introvert, of course I was processing) but that it was exciting and normal. I wasn’t anxious or nervous about the transition time but I wasn’t jumping up and down either. It’s strange how excitement can look different depending on the situation.
Whilst I’m sure that the more conventional form of excitement will appear at some point and although there are certain to be some nerves, I am thankful that for now, my excitement is calm so that I can figure out and absorb this change.
I am so looking forward to this new chapter and so grateful that this goal has been reached so early on in the year!