February always feels like the month where you need the most patience. The shortest day of the year may well be weeks behind us now, but February days can feel as short, dark and cold as it is possible to be and although we all know that Spring is on the way, concrete evidence of that is hard to find. The grey days coupled with lingering sniffles have us feeling a little blue here, even the mood-enhancing effects of cake seemed more short-lived last week and we've all needed a little extra comfort and cosiness.
Unsurprisingly I've been finding mine in knitting and I'd like to show you what I've been working on but I'm not quite ready to reveal, so that will be for another day. I have finished the Snawpaws mittens though and as today had the brightest start that we've seen in weeks I grabbed them and my camera and set off for an early walk (leaving the others to a half-term break lie-in).
We're lucky to have such a good choice of places to walk and today I chose the New River canal and Amwell nature reserve. Though the trees are still bare I've come home reassured that Spring really is just around the corner: there were plenty of catkins and buds; frilly anemone leaves underfoot in the woods and a feeling of renewed intimacy between the resident swans. The male swan spent a good deal of time thrashing the water with his huge wings and putting on quite a display for his mate and it's nice to think that there will be a new clutch of fluffy grey signets hatching out in a few months. A little robin was trilling away in the hedge and flew down to greet me, perching on a fence post just beyond arms reach. He was most amenable to being photographed and offered me several poses to choose from, such a bold and entertaining little chap as he was. It was a lovely morning to be out and I'm glad I made the effort and resisted that tempting lie-in.
I'm hoping to get out later in the week for a snowdrop walk because once they've emerged there's no denying that Spring has begun. 'Til then I'll be keeping Toby entertained and busy and hopefully squeezing in a few rows of knitting here and there. Hope the week ahead is good to you, see you soon.