The arrival of some gorgeous spring weather has coincided beautifully with our Easter holidays. It is so good to have some time at home to rest and re-charge, as I feel as though I've barely stopped since the beginning of the year. Windows have been opened wide and the whole house is flooded with fresh air and much needed sunlight - the fact that it shows up all the dust is not lost on me!
Without any plans for our time off, I've been slowly working through all those chores which get overlooked during the regular working week and making some progress with clearing out and spring cleaning. Even these small jobs are making me happy, however - a clean and tidy wardrobe, a mess free dining room (not for long) and an organised cutlery drawer. I feel ill at ease with clutter and being disorganised so, although this wouldn't be everyone's idea of fun, for me it's baby steps towards creating a more simplified way of living. So far, I've been cherry picking the simple jobs. Those achievable little tweaks which allow me to quickly see a difference, in the hope it will spur me on to more considerable tasks. I would love to be one of those people who can go all out with spring cleaning but, for me, a gradual approach is more befitting.
My tidying has extended into the garden. The grass has been cut several times now and I've seen off most of the weeds - there are always those one or two that get missed the first time around. I've trimmed back some of the plants, swept up and generally made it look a bit more presentable. Sadly, the shed is on it's last legs but I'm hopeful it might just see the year out. The weathered planter has been sanded down and given two fresh coats of wood stain. With the addition of a new lining I think it will last a while longer. This afternoon Lily helped me fill it with some violas - a pretty and inexpensive way to add a bit of colour to our little outdoor space.
Of course, the intention was never to be spending all our time at home and, when the weather is this good, we like to get out and have some fun. On Monday we packed up a picnic and took a trip out to a nature reserve by the sea. It was a beautiful sunny day and we enjoyed a walk around the coast, watching the seals playing in the shallows, while an abundance of gulls and oystercatchers gathered on the shoreline. The gorse is in full flower now and really stands out against the blue of the sky.
As usual, we've been walking through the woods. The, as yet, bare trees still allowing for the sunlight to stream through to reach the woodland floor. It is such a vibrant shade of green and is growing apace, I expect it won't be long until it is covered with bluebells. It makes a pleasant change not to be trudging through the mud now, as the ground appears to be drying out, at last.
Each morning this week, Lily has been going swimming. She loves it when we go swimming together but I thought it a good idea for her to try some proper lessons. She has been practising different strokes, swimming through hoops and, most importantly, having a lot of fun. She has taken to it so well and just this morning was given her 15m certificate. I'm so very proud of her.