Counting our blessings.

22 Jan



January has brought us mostly very mild Winter weather. Some gorgeous red sky mornings. Hopefully we will slide easily into Spring without any dramatic weather occurences. Last year we had that east wind that went on for most of March. That really delayed the start of the gardening year.



There’s also been a fair bit of  so welcome Winter sunshine…


still low enough in the sky to light up the usually shady forest floor. We walk here in this forest behind the house every day with the pooches. They love it…darting about here and there with noses to the ground. Lots of evidence of Foxes and Badgers about so it’s doggie heaven I guess. Sometimes Lettie will roll in Fox or Badger poo. She thinks it’s Chanel No 5 but I’m afraid we disagree. This behaviour is always rewarded by a bath before she’s allowed indoors again. Then it’s dirty looks for the evening. Freddie never does this. Is it something that only female Dogs do? Do your Dogs do it…males or females?



Andy has been taking advantage of the good weather by keeping the wood shed full and crown lifting some of the trees. The one he is working on here is an Ash. Crown lifting lets in a lot more light beneath the trees allowing more planting beneath and circulation of air. Of course Ash can be burned green so limbs cut from these trees are cut into logs straight away for the stoves.



I have been mostly working indoors as I had a chest infection earlier in the month. With the help of a homoepathic remedy and some herbal medicine I am now feeling better. All the marmalade is now made…bedrooms are decorated. I am so looking forward to working on the garden this coming year. Last year we did some gardening but it was mainly renovating the house that took our energy. With the house now almost finished this will be…hopefully…a year of making this garden our own.



Of course all work and no play is no fun. Not good for the soul. We need to take time to stop and observe the beauty of the stark Winter landscape. Just as beautiful as the green of Summer to me.

This is the beautiful Fin Lough near Knockvicar where I stopped a few days ago on the way to visit friends. A beautiful still blue sky day. The sort of day that makes you feel so lucky to be alive…on this beautiful Planet. A day to breathe in the crisp air and count our blessings.


25 Responses to “Counting our blessings.”

  1. John Willmott January 22, 2014 at 10:48 pm #

    I love stopping at that Fin Lough spot sometimes myself. Still looks like colder winter weather will be with us for Brighid’s Day, Imbolc and a couple of weeks after, but snow forecast for that time seems to be lifted now. Lets hope its does not hang on. Veggie prep is in my mind this year as I let it slide last year. Every success to bumper harvest there.

    • bridget January 22, 2014 at 11:33 pm #

      Thanks John! We really want to get back to growing a lot of our food again this year. Good luck with your endeavours too.

  2. KerryCan January 22, 2014 at 10:58 pm #

    The lough looks beautiful! I, too, am looking forward to the garden . . . but it’ll be a long time here in upstate New York.

  3. Small House Under a Big Sky January 22, 2014 at 11:57 pm #

    I think rolling in stuff depends more on breeds than sex of animal. We’ve had several Labrador Retrievers, all females. Some rolled and some never did, just no interest. Just our experience.

    • bridget January 27, 2014 at 8:11 pm #

      I think it’s more a terrier thing…bigger dogs don’t seem to bother with that carry on.

  4. Dave January 23, 2014 at 12:29 am #


  5. Anne Wilson January 23, 2014 at 1:24 am #

    Robbie used to roll in anything smelly in his younger days, but all of our females have done it. Definitely their equivalent to Chanel.

  6. PlantPostings January 23, 2014 at 3:50 am #

    Ah, what beautiful sentiments! Lucky, indeed. I hope you’re able to get out there in the garden soon, too. And I hope we have an early spring after the tough winter we’re having. And I hope we both have time to stop and take in the beauty around us. Lovely post.

  7. elaine January 23, 2014 at 7:58 am #


  8. Anny January 23, 2014 at 10:26 am #

    Well our Greek rescue boy certainly enjoys rolling in fox poo – my old labrador/collie cross female wouldn’t roll in anything – but our friends with a chocolate labrador female have practically had to install a separate shower room for her, she’ll cover herself in anything revolting, the worst-to-date being rotting carp…

  9. Andrea Mynard January 23, 2014 at 10:28 am #

    Really enjoyed reading this post, so lovely to be reminded of the natural beauty around us even on the grimmest winter day. I love those days that start off a little grey and misty, when it’s tempting to huddle by the woodburner – but once you’re outside you realise how atmospheric it all is. Tempted to pull my wellies on…

    • bridget January 27, 2014 at 8:09 pm #

      Still too wet for any garden work here.

  10. pianolearner January 23, 2014 at 5:43 pm #

    why do dogs always roll in fox and badger poo? weird isnt it…

  11. wellywoman January 23, 2014 at 6:01 pm #

    I can only echo pianolearner’s comment re the poo. 😉 Some lovely photos there. Glad to hear you’re on the mend. It can be so hard when you have something that drags on. I wish we were seeing a bit more of that sunshine looks like yet more rain is heading our way.

    • bridget January 27, 2014 at 8:13 pm #

      We’re in for a week of rain here. Land is soaking…no gardening just yet.

  12. silverbells2012 January 23, 2014 at 8:58 pm #

    Fingers crossed for a good spring but in the meantime I hope have many more beauriful days 🙂

  13. Mizz Winkens January 23, 2014 at 9:01 pm #

    My dog always rolled in the most offensive smelling fox/badger poo she could find and absolutely delighted in it. She was a Pattersdale terrier- bred for badger hunting. Apparently this practice is engrained in our canine friends’ genes. It harks back to olden times when wild dogs engaged in poo rolling to smell less doggie and more like their prey when hunting. But nowadays I think it’s less strategic and just great fun!

    • bridget January 27, 2014 at 8:08 pm #

      Fun for them but not for their owner’s!

  14. Jane January 23, 2014 at 11:31 pm #

    Thankfully cats don’t do that or we’d have the smelliest house ever!
    Can’t wait to get outside again.
    Jane x

  15. Caro in the Urban Veg Patch January 25, 2014 at 1:20 pm #

    A few years ago, I was looking after my sister’s springer spaniel while she gave birth in hospital. I took him for a walk on the common to amuse the children in the hour before their mum came home with new baby and, you’ve guessed already, he rolled in very squishy smelly horse poo. It was November so I’m not sure he appreciated being hosed down in the garden before being allowed inside!
    Super, evocative photos Bridget, a little bit of winter warmth makes all the difference and lifts the spirits. Looking forward to seeing how your garden progresses throughout the year ahead.

    • bridget January 27, 2014 at 8:06 pm #

      Looking forward to getting into making it our own. Lots of plants in pots waiting for fine days.

  16. Willowarchway January 26, 2014 at 6:24 pm #

    Hi Bridget, your place is looking good. Our male dog, Jingo would roll in his own poo given the chance, but the strangest thing is our female cat has rolled in something green ( she is pure white, can you imagine?) I didn’t know that cats rolled in poo ??!

    • bridget January 27, 2014 at 8:05 pm #

      Never heard of a dog rolling in their poo. Charming! Never heard of a cat rolling in poo either. I thought they were too proud of their looks.

  17. june January 27, 2014 at 4:39 pm #

    Your house and the surrounding grounds are looking wonderful, Bridget.

    Glad you’re feeling better – chest infections are harder to cope with in the winter time, as I’ve had the misfortune of experiencing them in both summer and winter). What better way to celebrate all the hard graft you and Andy have put into making such a warm, welcoming, cozy and comfy home than to take a few days off to a beautiful place like Fin Lough.

    Our cats don’t do the badger or fox poo thing (thank goodness for small mercies), but they do other ‘charming’ things like bringing us prezzies of poor little (dead) mice or baby birds that have somehow found their way into the house. I always feel so sad for the little creatures, but, similar to the hunting gene and instinct in dogs, many cats (most especially former strays or abandoned/rescued ones like we have) just instinctually do this…but to their minds, I think they think they’re bringing us the most wonderful gifts.

  18. Chloris January 27, 2014 at 11:08 pm #

    You live in a beautiful part of the world. How lovely to be able to walk in the forest with your dogs. My Jack Russell always rolls in fox and badger poo. He’s also very partial to goose poo.

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