The weather not unreasonably for December, has dipped to below freezing. The garden looks amazing, the unweeded bits, the trees we should have pruned in the Autumn, even the scruffy piles of seeds that the birds throw down from their feeders look magical when covered in a chilly coating of frost. Further afield, the most unromantic of spots, the Park and Ride outside Perth is transformed. Narnia with a Megabus.
Today's chill has kept me by the cooker making Granola and lentil stew in quantities big enough to feed a hungry household. Abundant amounts of food make me happy. I like to feel that there is enough to go round and heaven knows, that feeling is in short supply right now. Like most people our household is keeping a canny eye on our spending and bargain of the week yesterday was a big packet of chillies, marked down to fifteen pence. My final job in the kitchen was to chop them into little bits and to avoid getting chilli juice in my eyes. They must be strong little fellows. I've washed my hands more often than Lady Macbeth but still they hurt like blazes. The chillies are spread out on greaseproof paper in the freezer waiting to be put into a plastic pot in order to pep up my cooking for many weeks to come. That's enough to forgive the tingle in my fingers.
Chillies. Little did I know the pain in store.
Granola. Far more soothing.
In other news - Deb Robson is coming to the UK. I can't wait. Deb is one of the reasons I have a collection of fleeces in varying states of preparation, such is the power of her knowledge and enthusiasm. See her blog here for more details and if anyone has any ideas/inspirations/offers of help please get in touch with Deb, we're very lucky to have her.