January 16, 2012

It's been like this


Suprised by green. (Helleborus Foetidus)

Bowled over by the scent of Christmas Box.

Beside myself with pleasure when these pop up every winter, but so early this year. They are simply hope made botanical, no?

But winter cold suddenly returned at the weekend, -6 degrees C this morning, even the river froze over.

The river reeds and grasses look dessicated now, but there is still such ineffible beauty in their demise I think.


Every year I get slightly exasperated by January and February, partly perhaps because the 'hygge' (Danish for 'winter cosy') has slightly lost its novelty and partly because I am just plain longing for the colour and warmth of Spring, and that can be a couple of months away yet.

This year though, I am finding a quiet rhythm in this slow, dark month. I am making time for extra sleep and reading, planning and baking, things that need a gentler pace, less rush. Like the dark, bare trees along the field margins, I am taking my time, absorbing nutrition of one sort or another, knowing all the time that busier weeks lie around the corner.

The best description I have found of this restful quality of January is here - and for the first time, I really understand what she is so eloqently describing. I hope you find it as inspiring as I did.


small stones 14,15,16

hope made botanical.

The river is iced, solidified, 
halted by nothing more than air.

It is not the tea itself I really love, 
or the frothy coffee, or hot chocolate milk, 
it is the warm cup in my hands, the heat seeping into my curled fingers, 
the radius of comfort for me alone.


  1. Lovely post Belinda, I am in unison with you.I once read a self-help book that talked about the seasons and winter is the time for renewal and regeneration, for nourishing ourselves, taking care of ourselves, ready for the spring.

    Last year I remember everyone blogging about spring coming, and I did it too, but it seemed to go on interminably. This year I am not doing that, I am embracing winter, for however long it takes! Much love to you, Linda x

  2. Isn't the weather just stunning at the moment. Your photos are lovely.

    My eye injury has forced me to stay home and rest (I haven't driven my car since my last day in the office before Christmas!). It has changed my attitude to January - I usually really dislike this long (cash-poor!) month but resigning yourself to being stuck indoors forces you to make the most of it. I'm taking every winter slowly from now on.

    Gorge photos. Andrew's picking a new lens up for me tomorrow, I'm very excited as I'm loving the new camera. Do let me know if you find a decent day course for the photography - would love to come along if I can.

    Nicki xx

  3. I love winter, I love the slow dark days of January and the often deeper gloom of February, I think because I embrace it's pace. I've never really tried to articulate it though. Perhaps I should.

    I think small stones 14 and 16 are my favourites so far.

  4. I lost a good hour out of my life following your link. Then again maybe the visit will help me enjoy the next few hours even more:)

    Oh and I love your hair. My hairdresser laughs at how awful mine is and how hard it is to make it look halfway human.

    So he'll be thrilled by your comment.

    xo jane

  5. "Hope made botanical." I love that! I'm impersonating a slug myself while waiting for spring.

  6. I usually struggle with January, but this year has been different. The sunny days have helped. And I loved Alicia's post - and yours.

  7. There is a real stark beauty in the photos.

    And as for the hot drinks, I hope someone buys you a hug-mug. Ideal.

  8. I love the seedhead photo and I'm totally with you on small stone 16!

    What exactly are the small stones, I've seen a few on your recent posts but am not familiar with the concept!