Snow place like Home…

I’ve been reading lots of books lately that are winter themed and they’re making me rather nostalgic.

fur-girl

There’s something magical about winter for me. Part of it is seeing all the many lovely pictures that people post on social media of the snow falling, and the white out that those in cooler climates seem to experience. Part of it is remembering how good it feels to come out of the cold and into a warm house to grab a mug of hot chocolate to help warm up your freezing nose and stinging ears. However I have to live vicariously through others these days, as Florida doesn’t have the experience of real winter let alone snow.

snowflake7

 

As a child growing up in the North-East of England, snow was a given almost every year. I still remember walking to school as a tiny child aged around five, and tramping through the snow in my thick tights and wellington boots (read mud boots if you’re American) gripping tightly to my mother’s hand. I felt then that I was going to sink into the snow and disappear forever, so I held on for dear life. I loved to hear the crunch; I loved the sound of the crackling under my feet as the snow compacted. I loved the almost sacred silence that the snow brought as it muffled the voice of the world around it.

snowflake3

A few years later we had a giant snowfall one day. I don’t remember anything like it in recent years. After school my friends and I spent the afternoon gathering up armfuls  of glistening white powder, pushing it together and watching it change into a huge ball. As we traced our steps up the long garden, glimpsing behind us, we could see a long empty path, almost as though we had rolled up a carpet. We made a giant snowman. My mom got out the video camera and we waved and smiled, imagining ourselves in the future, playing it back as grown-ups. Sadly we never got to see it. The video was lost during one of several house moves. But my memory of that epic day will stay with me forever.

blue-winter-flower1

Sadly we never got another snow like that again. And now I’m living in Florida, I know I’ll need to hang on even tighter to that memory.

 

So, this year I decided that I was going to embrace my inner child and figure out a way to experience that magic again. Armed with my ‘Law of Attraction’ books and journals, one of my positive entries for this year is to book a vacation somewhere that has deep snow. I have no idea how I’m going to pay for it, but I’ll figure those details out as the year goes on.

snowflake-1

I figure If I save hard, we can take a trip to Lapland! There are trips where you can stay in Ice Hotels and watch the Northern Lights, and experience a real authentic winter. That’s my plan ‘A’. If finances are tighter, then my plan ‘B’ is to take a trip to Colorado and hopefully learn to Ski. Either way, it will help me come to terms with the fact that we’ll never have snow here. Ever. Also I’ll be putting my Law of Attraction experiment in action.

bluesleigh.png

Part of me wonders whether I’m viewing winter through rose tinted glasses. My family back in Britain are quick to remind me how unpleasant it is to have to drag yourself out of bed on freezing morning and defrost your car before facing a freezing walk from the car park to work. Or how it feels to know that you have to go out in a blizzard when you would much rather stay home by the cozy fire and stay warm.

wintergirl1

Maybe they’re right. Things always seem to look better the further they are in the rear view mirror.

 

I’ll have to let you know. In December, when I’m in Lapland!

 

Love Sally x

f3

Autumn Vibes

Autumn….     fall-harvest-glitter-rose

 

I love autumn.

I love the cool sharp bite of the air, the colors of the changing leaves, the silky damp chill in the breeze, that you feel flitting across your face as you leave the house and the door clunks closed heavily behind you. I love the scent of fall too. There is a special scent that fills the air that is different to any other season; somewhat spicy and fruity- due perhaps to the fallen apples after they have tumbled to the ground, spilling their scents and adding their own fragrance into the atmosphere.

 

fall-girl-brolly

I love watching little children walking with their parents, while kicking up the fallen leaves, so they can watch them swirl and dance about them. Who doesn’t love to see the pinch of pink in our cheeks after a brisk walk when the autumn air has been nipping at them? Autumn air seems so cleansing.

 

fall-leaves-1

I love the transition from summer clothes to fall layers. Shades of brown, cream, green and teal, and deep brick red. I feel warmer just looking at these colors, never mind being wrapped up in them. I ‘m always excited to see the changing storefront displays, noting how the artists can manage to create a swirling forest of magical colors. No wonder I feel the urge to treat myself to new fall make-up collections, and clothes, despite a closet that is already pretty full. These people can work magic.

fall-ornament-2

 

Yes magic is in the air, and I’m under its spell.

Which leads me to the excitement of Halloween coming up. It’s such a wonderful season! For children everywhere, the importance of ‘what to wear’ on that special night is tantamount to happiness, if only for twenty-four hours.

 

frou-fou-lilac-witch-display

 

For the rest of us, we must remember to buy in huge supplies of candy, because as much as we have better things to do with our money (such as buy books) we don’t want to be that house. And finally after jumping up a thousand times to answer the doorbell, when the candy tub is empty and the last little witch has gone home, we get to switch the porch light back off and collapse on the sofa with a mug of hot chocolate (made Italian style please) and a giant bar of Toblerone that we hid earlier.

 

frou-fall-coffee-display

Now is the time to curl up in front of a good movie, usually a vintage rom,com, set in the fall. Try ‘Stepmom’ if you want to have a good cry too. This follows the wheel of the year along with its story – but have your tissues ready. What about ‘You’ve got Mail’? Oh how I love the vintage set design for Cathy’s apartment. Swoon.

 

Or maybe you would prefer a good old horror? ‘Poltergeist’ for example, either the vintage version or the newer one, both are so good. I love to marathon my DVD’s of the ‘American Horror Story’ series. ‘Dream House’ is another great favorite of mine. And today I just watched ‘The Conjuring 2’ It was SO good, and based on a true story. Rent yours from Redbox, and if you like it, buy it later.

frou-frou-pumpkin

Now is the time to bake all your pumpkin spice cookies. You don’t need to bake from scratch; you can buy the Pillsbury version to save time. Either way you will fill your home with a fabulous aroma of fall that cannot help but make you want to curl up in a corner with your next favorite read.

 

Here are some books I’d recommend for the season.

 

img_6092The first two are by my all-time favorite author: Alice Hoffman. Most of you will have heard of ‘Practical Magic’ the Disney movie which this book inspired, but have you ever read the actual book? It is much different. You can see where the movie was inspired by it, but there are many more adult themes in the book. I have read all of Alice Hoffman’s books and my personal favorite is: ‘The Probable Future’. I’m actually rereading it right now. It was one of those books that I held to my heart right after reading the last word on the last page.Do you ever do this?

I also wholly recommend that you read ‘Garden Spells’ by Sarah Addison Allen too. Her writing style is very much like Alice Hoffman’s, inasmuch as she uses much more description than dialogue in her stories. I was so thrilled to discover Sarah’s books. I’m sure I did a little happy dance after reading the first page.

 

fall-brown-seed-head

Next I recommend you cook up some delicious fall recipes from Sophie Dahl’s cookbook: ‘Miss Dahl’s Voluptuous Delights’ This girl loves autumn so much she started her seasonal cookbook with it. I personally loved her recipe for ‘Poached eggs on portobello mushrooms with goats cheese’ although I broiled/ grilled the mushrooms for ten minutes and not the five that she suggested. I prefer them more wilted than raw.

img_6090I could really wax lyrical about autumn for hours on end. I guess I miss it so much. Living in Florida is lovely but I do miss my seasons.

If you have any great fall reads that you want to recommend, I’d love to hear from you.

Until next time, with love, Sally xx

f3