February 2013

How can we possibly be in March already? The heating has been rather challenging since I moved in and by process of elimination I have discovered that one reason it that I loose 90% of my heating up the open chimney. My neighbour kindly introduced me to http://www.chimneysheep.co.uk/ and I thought it only fair to share this discovery.  Sally Phillips has cleverly created an amazing thick blanket from excess wool from her local farmers in the Lake District.  The idea is that you push it up the fireplace and thereby prevent 90% of your heating being lost, genius!  It really has worked and I love it. Sally started up this business last October and I can’t recommend it enough, it’s an absolute joy to at least retain the heating now!  Just need to figure out why the kitchen resembles a freezer now!

It doesn’t seem like yesterday since that magical snowfall back in January, it must be down to the weather in fact I think winter has been freeze framed!  With the sun teasing us every so often, it gives us hope that spring is just around the corner.  It’s been a busy month or so at Hawthorn Cottage, ideas for the garden are developing and hope of a beautiful little potager are slowly coming together.  I marked out the plan on the grass and have begun to dig, weather permitting, I can bear the drizzle but it’s the cold that eventually makes me turn tail to busy myself in the house.

I attempted to spread the creativity and tried my hand at bread making, which is enormously fulfilling and indeed filling!  The smell that enveloped my kitchen during cooking was divine, though when it came out the oven I had to put my hat on and head outdoors, the temptation to break into my fresh hot loaf was all too much, it was a long 60 minutes! This led me to seek out one of the finest flour mills in England which is rather wonderfully on my doorstep. I’m now very excited to be in the planning stage of a photo shoot there in spring, the kitchen garden there is rather wonderful too, I’m inspired just thinking about it.

Various creatures have been disturbed during my digging, mostly those little white larvae, but I did come across a lovely beetle who could barely move, still in his hibernation mode I must have woken him from his winter slumber.  I returned him somewhere well away from my unforgiving spade.  I have what I think is a little cabbage white chrysalis on my shed door, no doubt I’ll miss her unfolding her wings, but I hope to see her flitting around in the summer in the potager (with any luck!). I have no doubt her children will munch their way through all my hard work this year!

The snowdrops are nearly over now and the daffodils have started to emerge with their bright hopeful heads nodding around the perimeter of the garden, it’s the tulips I can’t wait to see.

Chimney SheepChimney Sheep in situSetting Out Digging 1 of 4 ChrysalisBread IMG_6761Feb 16 2013


What will March bring I wonder?


7 thoughts on “February 2013

  1. Hi Britt , have just picked up your blog and the lovely photos. The whole place looks idyllic. I am longing to see how the garden goes for you when the weather sorts itself out. We have had another 24 hrs of rain here so once again have puddles in unexpected places. Our snowdrops are still going strong but then i am lucky enough to have lots of different ones so their season is extended. Have you any Hellebores? I have lots of seedlings that you might like to grow on.
    I too am a blog “maiden”. In fact this is the first one I have ever replied to. Am not sure if I am approaching this in the right way.No doubt someone will tell me!

    • Dearest Linda,

      lovely to hear from you! How very clever to work out how to comment, I’m impressed! I’m so excited about the garden, hedge whips going in at Easter & 3 pleached crab apples…. Just in the nick of time! I would LOVE some hellebores yes please! Hoping to really build the garden from cuttings of other people’s. Liz may have mentioned my interest in a cutting of your clematis integrefolia, hopefully…

      Aiming to update the blog each month so keep an eye out!

      Love to you & Mike x

  2. Fabulous blog Britt and wonderful to have photos too. The cottage looks picture perfect and I look forward to a stay when I’m next over!!! Keep digging. Lots of love xxx

  3. Britt! LOVE your blog. What an utterly idyllic home you have. It makes me long to live in the countryside again. We’ve just moved to a house with a bigger garden and I am a complete novice gardener so I will be following the progress of your garden avidly. The first hurdle we have to get over is trying to make our garden more private (something you don’t need to worry about from the looks of it!), so we’re investigating decorative fencing panels (how expensive?) fast growing evergreens before we can move to the more enjoyable purchase of bedding plants and flowers!! I’ll be after some advice once I start with that I’m sure!
    We’d love to visit your beautiful part of the world at some point and introduce you to Chloe. Much love and keep blogging!!! Xx

    • OMG Sarah, I have just seen your message, no idea why I didn’t see this before! Such lovely comments thank you! Did you manage to get your boundaries done before heading up to your M&D’s? I hope great progress is being made and you’ll be back soon. Enjoy the summer in the lakes, what a perfect place to be! Would LOVE to see you and Chole, lets get something in our diaries to look forward to.


  4. Britt, your house looks just gorgeous, and as ever, amazing images! I hope the commute to London is proving too arduous – I can’t wait to see you soon to catch up properly. Thanks for sharing and looking forward to the next instalment!

    Jen xx

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