Sunday, 10 January 2021

January

 


This wasn't the start to the New Year that I'd hoped for but even though I've found the last week rather challenging, I woke this morning determined to shake myself out from my feelings of melancholy. I can't help but think that it's going to take a whole lot longer than expected before we see a change to the current situation and I need to become more accepting of this.

The snow all but disappeared overnight and today the fells were hidden from view by a dense fog. The temperature had risen above freezing for the first time in a week, and for once my morning routine did not include tentatively treading across the frosty garden to check the bird seed and replenish the water. From the kitchen window I could still see two thick discs of ice, which had been previously emptied from the water tray, laying stubbornly at the edge of the grass but even they had thawed by midday.


We're back to home learning once again and, after an intermittent start, we've got the hang of the new system. Already it seems to be working much better than the platform we used last time. Instead of completing all the work during the morning, I've been breaking it down into several short twenty minute sections slotted throughout the day, as I've discovered this more relaxed approach works better for us.
I'm still working every day, and this gives me a sense of routine and normality. 


We are getting out walking most afternoons, although keeping our routes close to home for the time being. The winter sun has been beautiful in the woods and it's lovely to see the snowdrops are almost in flower. Wearing lots of warm layers has been essential in the freezing temperatures but more often than not Lily will still insist on removing her jacket. Children just don't seem to feel the cold do they.


Christmas already feels like a long time ago and although most of our decorations were taken down last week, I've left the wooden snowflakes, a star and Lily's snow globe on display. Also, to keep a cosy glow in the kitchen I've kept my little tree in the corner, complete with lights. I'm happy to see it has some fresh green shoots on some of it's branches. 

I went for a short run this morning and as I passed by the fields which, in a few weeks, will be full of lambs, I  reminded myself spring is just around the corner. 

J. X





51 comments:

  1. Being positive! Three of my daughters are now home schooling yet again. We have to get through this to be able to once again see our families. Well done.

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    1. I hope it won't be too much longer before we can. X

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  2. The cold, gloomy weather of late is enough to make anyone feel low. Unlike the previous lockdowns the weather was much better. I think it's going to be a tad warmer this week.

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    1. The darker days can be a bit depressing. We try to get out each day for some fresh air and exercise. X

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  3. You're not alone Jules. I'm trying to take each day as it comes but I can't help feeling fed up when I read things may not change before the end of March and even then I suspect it will just be back into lower tiers with their restrictions. Your photos are a real tonic though, especially the ones of Lily enjoying herself. You honestly wouldn't think there was anything wrong in the world. xx

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    1. On the surface Lily appears to be quite content but there are moments when I can tell she's feeling unsettled by it all. X

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  4. You have the right attitude, Jules. We do have to be more accepting. I still have quite a lot of the Christmas decorations still up, although I plan to have all of it taken down by the end of next week! Beautiful photos and I am currently looking at an almost identical sunset from my living room window! I hope you have a lovely week ahead of you.

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    1. I am discovering so much about myself just now and I realise acceptance does not come easy to me, but I am trying my best :) X

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  5. Hello!
    Yes, changing and adjusting schooling is what we do too.
    We have our tree up too, for the same reason.
    We love the cozy lights during the dark evenings.
    I always enjoy your posts, my friend.
    Have a cozy day!

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    1. Thank you, Billie Jo. Our 'big' Christmas tree is now outside in the garden but the little kitchen tree is still giving us a cosy glow. X

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  6. Your photos are just beautiful. Working in twenty minute segments sounds wise. I left up my favorite snowman decoration by the front door, too. It's wooden and has a deer. This whole situation is going to take some time and a lot of patience, I'm afraid.

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    1. Thank you, Stephenie. Twelve months ago I don't think anyone would have guessed we would be in this situation. X

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  7. Learning in twenty minute segments is a great idea, I wish I could have done that when I was at school. Your photos are lovely, I love the last one. Lily looks like she's enjoying herself on the remaining ice and the snowdrops are a sign that spring isn't too far away :)

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    1. Thankfully, schools now understand the need to get children moving on a regular basis throughout the day. Much like her mother, Lily does not enjoy sitting still for very long :D
      Yes, roll on spring. X

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  8. Spring is around the corner and we must remain positive in these dreadful times.
    Good to hear you are getting to grips with the home schooling, it must be quite challenging for families x

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    1. The school is using a great new learning platform this time round. It's making it easier to break down the learning and receive regular feedback throughout the day. X

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  9. I think we coped with the first lockdown so much better than this latest one as we were able to get outdoors in the sunshine. The weather just lately has been so cold, it's been frosty and icy, but it started to warm up a bit yesterday and the forecast doesn't look too bad for this coming week. I'm glad you've found a homeschooling schedule which works for you.

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    1. The weather can make such a difference, as I don't like the feeling of being stuck indoors. X

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  10. Spring really isn't too far away. Already the days are noticeably longer.
    My snowdrops are nowhere near as far on as yours. In fact there don't seem to be many at all really. Maybe I need to plant some more.
    Lovely photos as always.
    xx

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    1. These are the first snowdrops I have seen to be almost in flower but there are lots of green shoots appearing in the woods now. X

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  11. Lovely photos, yes we just have to stay as positive as we can be, follow the rules and hope for the best don't we. Stressing about anything will only make things seems so much harder.

    Take care. xx

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    1. Thank you, Sue. I hope we begin to see a positive difference with the rolling out of the vaccine. X

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  12. Isn't it great to see the signs of spring. Just seeing those snowdrops makes me happy!

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    1. It's always reassuring to see those signs of spring. I've noticed they are already selling bunches of daffodils in the supermarket. X

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  13. Beautiful photo on the ice and how Lily has shot up! We must all knuckle down to get through this. I heard yesterday that it will be a race to get the vaccine out before this new strain mutates into something worse and far more serious which may then mean the vaccine will not work and then we will have wasted millions of vaccines and basically would have to start again. So much more is both open and allowable this time round - I think the government may have to rethink their strategy if they want to contain this.
    Good that you have found a balance to your days - we have little Freddie again tomorrow for 3 days - so I am rushing around to get jobs done before then.Have a good week. x

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    1. Thank you, Vivien. Lily is growing so fast, it's frightening :)
      The roll out of the vaccine appears to be going well. I really hope we begin to see a positive change soon.
      Looking after Freddie will be a happy distraction for you. X

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  14. Glad you have found a pattern of teaching that suits you both, it is a struggle for so many. As always beautiful photos Jules. I had a case of the doldrums, I think you are so right it is going to take longer than anticipated. Take care.

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    1. My approach to home learning might also include a bit of nagging and bribery ;)

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  15. I know how you feel it seems like this situation is never ending but it will end, thinking positive is the only way to go. I'm lucky in that I don't have small children it must be so hard to keep them occupied and focused on their learning. How lovely to see the snowdrops nearly in bloom, there's no sign of mine yet, I'll have to venture into the woods to see if there's any there, I hate going out when it's so cold. Have a great week.

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    1. Home learning certainly comes with it's own challenges :)
      I don't mind the cold weather. I'm happier outdoors when it's not raining.

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  16. Acceptance seems to be the key to inner peace in this current situation and that, frankly, can be very difficult so I can well understand why you may feel melancholy. However something tells me that isn't your real nature (certainly your whole blog persona seems much more positive and strong) and that you have considerable inner strength which will get you both through. As the Kiwis say Kia kaha, kia maia, kia manawanui.

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  17. PS I forgot to say how much the snowdrops happified me and, as you will know by now, trees with the sun coming through them is a special love of mine.

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    1. I'm glad it's not just me who struggles with acceptance :)
      January can be a difficult month anyway, and trying to remain positive isn't easy for anyone just now, so I like to focus on the basics of eating well, getting enough sleep and, of course, getting outdoors in the fresh air.
      I need to go and look up that saying now. X

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  18. Hello Jules. I am excited that spring is just around the corner, but definitely not trying to rush it. I really do love the cold and stillness that winter offers. Our spring, and especially summer season is so long here which likely has something to do with it. We are homeschooling, as well, and have been doing so since September. I am very hopeful my daughter will be back in a classroom setting for sixth grade next year! Take care, my friend.

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    1. Just being able to see signs of spring feels hopeful just now. Summers here are short and winters are often gloomy and damp. X

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  19. Lovely photos, as always!
    The twenty minute of lesson sessions sound an excellent idea, I remember being told when I was revising for my A Levels, back in the last century, that the brain could only absorb information in 20 minute chunks and to always take a break.
    Take heart, Spring is on her way, look at how much longer it's staying lighter now! xxx

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    1. Thank you, Vix. Yes, I'd just begun to notice it was staying lighter for longer in an evening. X

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  20. We have had beautiful sunny mornings here too, I feel so much better when there's sunshine, even though I am also finding it hard to come to terms with the current situation. I think your twenty minutes of learning is a fine idea, my niece's lessons are ninety minutes long which is ridiculous, I think. And I'm sure you know this, but "education" isn't just about school-type learning, and Lily will be learning all the time on her afternoon walks. Take care, Jules. x

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    1. Ninety minutes is a long time, I hope your niece is managing okay. I'm also concerned about the amount of screen time the children are having just now, which is more reason to try and get outdoors regularly. X

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  21. Jules, so sorry I have missed commenting on your recent lovely posts. I must go and see if I have any snowdrops yet, I confess I've not been in the garden much.

    Acceptance is a word that has been at the forefront of my mind since the start of 2021, and you are absolutely right, we will be in lockdown for much longer than originally anticipated (but isn't that the way it went before?)

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    1. Look closely and you might see some small green shoots. It's not really been the weather for gardening recently :)
      I think this lockdown will prove to be much more challenging than the last. People are growing weary and the dark days do little in the way of lifting our spirits. X

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  22. Eldest is getting frustrated at the prospect of doing interventions whith children online shortly. Hopefully we can knock this virus out of the limelight and come out the other side with renewed understanding and thankfulness. x

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    1. I hope we reach that other side much sooner than we had hoped. X

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  23. Is that snowdrops I see! I was happy to find snowdrop shoots in my flower beds after I had got round to tidying them recently. A little burst of Spring..and optimism. X
    X

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  24. Melancholic describes my feelings too. I think we all just want our lives back. I miss my family very much. But Spring is not too far away and I'm so looking forward to seeing the tulip bulbs planted last year....and my snowdrops which must surely be very nearly here. Hang in there Jules. X

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    1. The arrival of spring will have much more meaning this year, Eloise. I do hope we will begin to see a change very soon. X

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  25. I had to smile at your comment "Children just don't seem to feel the cold do they" and agree! The grandchildren never seem to feel the cold, but then they are on the go so much aren't they! One of the grandchildren has just taken up jogging and goes out every day with his Dad, for which I am pleased ... in these lockdown days we all need to have some fresh air and exercise.
    I have been out for walks this week but the days are quite grey, I'm really hoping for a few frosty, blue skies and sunshine days soon!

    Take care, my good wishes.

    All the best Jan

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    1. I'm not sure I can remember a time when Lily didn't remove her coat for at least part of a walk, but she is never still, even when we're eating our packed lunch. X

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  26. A lovely post Jules, and a little reminder to me to be a bit more positive:)

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    1. Thank you, Ann. It's just not always easy is it. Xx

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