weekly photo challenge: local (produce)

We've had very mixed fortunes in the garden this year. Some things, like the courgettes and squash, have done really well, producing far more than we could reasonably eat. Meanwhile, the potatoes were a bit of a disaster, and we've had no late fruiting raspberries at all. Today was a beautiful sunny autumn afternoon, and … Continue reading weekly photo challenge: local (produce)

auvergne landscapes: first autumn walk

I have been out walking since the beginning of September, but today was the first time that it felt properly autumnal. A little too autumnal, actually. I could have done with a slightly less of the mist, and more of the mellow fruitfulness and maturing sun. The wonderful colours made up for the weather though. The … Continue reading auvergne landscapes: first autumn walk

news from the workshop: the moon and more

I've been busy over the past week or so, finishing off some of the designs that I had started, then set aside to work on a commission. The first is this full moon necklace. I really wanted to capture the rough, cratered appearance of the surface of the moon, so I started by adding some … Continue reading news from the workshop: the moon and more

monday verse: blackberrying

Nobody in the lane, and nothing, nothing but blackberries, Blackberries on either side, though on the right mainly, A blackberry alley, going down in hooks, and a sea Somewhere at the end of it, heaving. Blackberries Big as the ball of my thumb, and dumb as eyes Ebon in the hedges, fat With blue-red juices. … Continue reading monday verse: blackberrying

elderberry cordial, from bush to mug

We have a large elderberry bush in the garden, and we've been watching it closely for the past couple of weeks. The berries have been formed for a while now, and it's a fine balance between them being ripe enough to pick, and birds stripping the bush. Yesterday we decided it was time to harvest. … Continue reading elderberry cordial, from bush to mug

monday verse: blackberry-picking

Late August, given heavy rain and sun For a full week, the blackberries would ripen. At first, just one, a glossy purple clot Among others, red, green, hard as a knot. You ate that first one and its flesh was sweet Like thickened wine: summer's blood was in it Leaving stains upon the tongue and … Continue reading monday verse: blackberry-picking

weekly photo challenge: reward

I'm certainly not casting any clouts just yet, but we have had some dry sunny days over the past couple of weeks, so we've taken the opportunity to start work in the garden. There's a lot to do at this time of year, some of which should probably have been done last autumn, but never … Continue reading weekly photo challenge: reward

weekly photo challenge: gone, but not forgotten

The brambles are still very much in evidence, their leaves turning through gold and ruby red to a less spectacular brown. The blackberries, though, are just a distant memory now, the ripe fruit either gathered by people, eaten by birds and animals, or withered and dry on the stem. Gone, but for us not forgotten. We … Continue reading weekly photo challenge: gone, but not forgotten

weekly photo challenge: dreamy

I always feel as though this house is dreaming of its own past. It's in a tiny hamlet a couple of km from us, and as it's on one of our favourite walking routes, we pass it regularly. It was part of a larger hamlet, but it is now the only building left standing. We've … Continue reading weekly photo challenge: dreamy


Most of the blackberries seem to be over now, but there are still plenty of ripe sloes hanging in the hedgerows. We must get around to picking some soon, so that the sloe brandy we make from them will be ready for tasting at Christmas. As well as tasting great when combined with alcohol and … Continue reading sloes