From fruitful colour to baron beauty….

Autumn has truly kicked off, marking a time of preparation. The garden in need of taming, frost prevention and bird feeders filled with good fats, mealworms & tasty seeds. Ready for the birds to plump up before the inevitable snow and to keep them going throughout.

This time of year may mark the decline of greenery and blooming flowers, but the auburn shades are atmospheric and delightful. Subtle changes from oranges to browns tower overhead and crinkle underfoot, a simple sensory moment, perfect for painting a smile on your face. And cooler temperatures only make the heart warming food that little more delightful!

Enjoying every element of my surroundings of late, is helping me no end. Watching leaves fall, listening to birds chirp and that special something in the air, just might make this time of year my favourite.

Here’s to savouring the simple things. Seeing the beauty in the things we can’t control. Smiling at a colour, a sound, a smell. Wonderful simplicity….


Jibber-jabber at dawn #5….

With a semi successful sleep behind me, I stir from my slumber with a minor headache but a smile on my face. Today shall be a productive one.

The garden still with plenty to do, is always a task to look forward to. Shrubs need trimming, borders need tidying and a dismantled shed needs breaking down into usable and unusable. I’ve lost a little momentum with the garden but I’m hoping to build a swing seat out of the decent wood from the shed. I can see it now – birds tweeting, bees and butterflies aplenty, pots and trellises in bloom, and a swing chair to enjoy it all. T’will be amazing…

Today is also a gym day. Forty minutes on the bike has become something I look forward to, a necessary evil turned unexpected joy. And it’s leg day, my favourite! Some may ponder whether I’m being sarcastic here, but as with cardio, I’m loving leg day!

A new found vigour courses through me of late, a want to get things done! I’m giving more 100% at the gym and I’m hoping I can find the same intensity for my gardening again! Building this chair and seeing the success of tidy borders and shrubs will no doubt spur me on no end.

Never giving up and always searching for little victories and enjoyment in life is something I firmly believe everyone should work towards. Yes, you may lose a little momentum or even have completely shite days but there is always something to look forward to. Whether that be a major life change or a minor victory, find what makes you happy and hold on to it….

Jibber-jabber at dawn #3….

Birds are tweeting outside my window, many different chirps from an array of species. It’s an amazing sound. Makes me think of my grandad. He loved his garden and all the birds in it. A finch here, a wagtail there and the resident woodpecker.

After putting up bird feeders in the garden, the flocks have once again returned. I could sit and watch for hours.

This being said, there’s gardening to do…..well the dismantling of a shed anyway. This should be fun, especially as I have no idea what I’m doing. I think that’s the best part though, learning as you go. Many mistakes teach many lessons….or so I hope.

Learning as I go seems to be a regular path within this latest chapter of my life. Building a table from spare wood we had lying around. Measuring and sawing, to using a planer and a sander. Then to the paint, one coat, then two. With perfection an aim I hold dear, I had to accept I wouldn’t get it, however I knew I’d learn and feel a sense of achievement. And I did.

After building a bird feeder from chicken wire and off cuts, then a plant pot feeder and fixing some broken tools, my next job is to dismantle. This isn’t just because I’m a destructive so-and-so, more a need for more wood to build and make new things! Plus the shed ain’t plum. Tis a leaning, warped giant spider web encased in perfectly reusable materials.

Positivity is a rainbow above my head today. Let’s crack on and bring down these walls! ‘Shed…you WILL be conquered!’

Daily drivel #3….

After yesterday’s gym session I’m feeling a little worse for wear. With this being said I don’t want it to ruin my day today!

After a couple of morning stretches, a play fight with the pooch and a delicious eggy breakfast, I’m raring to go again. Yes my muscles still ache and I’m fighting for physical energy, but my mind is in a state of ‘let’s do this!’.

Another day in the garden looming, I’m always excited to check over the fruit trees and flowers. Then it’s on to the grind, the bits that need work and that usually brings with it the chance to dig, chop, saw or build!

With all this being said, in the back of my mind I’m always pondering how much will be too much. As much as this is physical work, when will enough be enough for my head? Sometimes I can go all day, fixing, trimming and planting. But other days, the noise and the repetitive motion can be detrimental to my mental state.

For me this is really frustrating as I’ve always been a physical worker. Why do the two overlap? It’s a pain.

Pushing those thoughts aside, let’s get on with the day and deal with any issues if they arise. Forget what could happen and get on with what makes me feel good now! With a smile on my face and a coffee at hand, what else do I need?!

Keep smiling people. Smilesmilesmile!

Daily drivel #2….

With the gardening rained off, I’m at a loose end. I’m thinking I should shut myself in the garage and build….. something…..

How about a bird table? Or a nice big planter? How’s about both?

I find myself doing this regularly of late. Granted in recent weeks I’ve been escaping the heat. So why not escape the rain. With lengths of wood just scattered between shed and garage, I’ve already built a garden table, and absolutely loved doing so.

I’m not sure if it’s the labour or the precision of measuring that has me hooked. But either way with busy days means a busy yet uncluttered head. The action at hand doing it’s very best to own the thinking portion of my brain.

So today I’ll build. Build something physical and build on the last few positive days. With a poor attempt at a gym session yesterday my only blip, I’ll build on the positivity and not let the rain wash it away 😊

The rough with the smooth….


With a shitty week almost behind me, these past few days have been bliss. After recuperating at the mother’s, the garden has once again brought peace to an otherwise turbulent storm of a brain.

Floods of tears and panic plagued my days for a reason I could not put my finger on. Thoughts and fears I couldn’t fathom.

Grabbing the dog while he slept I jumped in the car and did my best to compose myself before starting the engine. Brief calm, even a second wouldn’t arise.

Pooch with feet on my shoulder, chewing my ear, he knew I wasn’t happy. I sat in the car for neigh on an hour before I felt safe to drive. With the journey to my mother’s that of country lanes and beautiful scenery I seemed to put hell on pause….

With my mum in sight the tears fell once again. I didn’t want to go back. So set on moving forward, I believe a regular ‘bad day’ was dialled up to eleven. Uncontrollable thinking set the scene once again, me versus me versus me.

That was the rough, like sandpaper with mountainous peaks & cavernous troughs. Yet somehow all uphill. The smooth came after. With gradual levelling out, almost sedentary at points, the fresh air started to clear the stink that was betwixt my ears. A safe place at the family home, amazing surroundings and the garden to potter around in. Just like my grandad….

With fruit trees to plant, brambles to tackle and shrubs to trim, I seemed to drift through the next few days with a semi vacant view. It was only when I woke one morning to the sun beaming in, fruit trees still upright (always a bonus) and that vacancy, that I found a smile and a reason to get out of bed without an ever present numbness. Excited for what the day would bring I woke the pup, put my phone on aeroplane mode (camera only day) and cooked my breakfast…….I cooked! It was amazing!

Paprika scrambled eggs, avocado and ham. Granted I only scrambled eggs but that my friends was an achievement. When I cook it means I’m feeling ‘not too bad’ which is freakin’ brilliant!

With all this rambling I’ve forgotten the point of why I wanted to post today….I guess it’s to say, patience even through panic, trepidation and distress is vital. Granted in the moment, the last thought you have is to let the rough breeze by and wait for the smooth. But sometimes waiting is all you can do. This isn’t a bad thing. One day I hope I’ll have the answers. How to avoid the rough and tough times all together. Or how to delete them as they force their twisted pens to paper. One day……tis all I need to keep searching.

You’re not alone. The smooth will always follow the rough. And when life gives you lemons….go eat a brownie!

Here’s to mental health awareness, the great outdoors and overcoming those little demons!

Much love
Smiley 😊