Isn't it often the case that you are so busy looking after your family, running a home, working full time, trying to keep 27 million (approximately)(!) balls in the air at once, that you sometimes forget to look after yourself? I think everyone needs a little 'me' time now and then. A time to 'simply be', if you like. No washing of pots. No cooking, cleaning, supervising, playing referee in teenage spats or nurse-maiding middle aged bosses who should know better.
This is not a wholly selfish act, merely one where you take time out to look after yourself, to replenish your energy reserves and to ensure that in being kind to yourself you are better equipped to be kind to those around you.
I had such a bad night's sleep last night. Not only was it hot and stuffy despite the windows being thrown wide open, it was one of those typical insomniac nights fuelled by tiny inconsquential niggles manifesting into huge great issues before my (unclosed) eyes, which left me exasperated and strung out. Just when I thought I was sinking into slumber, it escaped from my clutches as if I was trying to hold on to mist. This morning I woke after approximately 20 minutes sleep just before my alarm clanged into action, tearful, anxious and completely exhausted. So I awarded myself a duvet day.
My 'duvet' days are rarely spent snoozing under the covers. More often than not I surround myself in the comfort of the things which make me happy. Like visiting the allotment or perhaps walking in the field. Today I did both. The allotment was both hot and weedy but aided by lots of cool water and doing things gently, I was able to harvest the first of our potatoes. Remember THIS POST? Well the picture belows shows the yield from pulling just three plants. Harvesting potatoes is one of my favourite allotmenteering jobs. It's like digging for buried treasure. The yield was pretty good so far with some sizeable tatties as well as some smaller salad potatoes. As these were all sown from sprouting potatoes I would otherwise have thrown away then in effect they haven't cost me much at all.
One of the allotment holders has unfortunately had to give up his plot due to ill health. It was promised to new people but they have failed as yet to show up to begin clearing the weeds, so I put on my metaphorical foragers hat and harvested some beautiful raspberries which were there for the taking. Together with some tiny strawberries from our plot, layered up with some vanilla yoghurt and topped with a smashed digestive biscuit mixed with some oaty breakfast cereal, they made for a gorgeously sinful tasting but low fat dessert this evening.
I also pulled some red 'salad bowl' salad leaves and was also given some baby broad beans. As I'm the only person in the house who likes broad beans, it's my intention to eat them a la Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall - see here for the recipe!
Garden jobs this weekend have included thinning out the carrot seedlings which are now growing on in the raised bed. I've companion planted spring onions with them which will hopefully confuse any lurking carrot flies! The spring onions desperately needed to be thinned out and replanted from their seedling trough. It's always a bit of a wobbly time when you transplant seedlings. They look so sorry for themselves; all floppy and lying pale and wan on the damp soil. I'm hoping that they'll all pick up very shortly and maintain the vigorous growth they were showing before transplanting.
Another bit of recycling too - the old reed screen fencing we took down early last month has been utilised as screening over the top of the chicken run. It fits perfectly and will hopefully afford the chooks some shade at the hottest times of the day, as well as some shelter from light showers too. They look as though they've got their own little beach hut now!
Dinner this evening has been a 'Be Kind to Yourself' meal too! Stir fried savoy cabbage with bacon, onions and a little chorizo, together with crispy crushed potatoes and a couple of sausages, followed with the afore mentioned fruity dessert. Tasty, cheap and filling - and comforting to boot.
Well that's it from me. Hopefully an early night will prevail and I'll be able to shake off this feeling of utter mental exhaustion. I'm glad I took time out today to "smell the roses". Sometimes you need time to regroup and readdress; not as a couple or as a family - but as an individual.
Wishing you all good spaces and kindnesses, whether self-administered or otherwise.