It is always lovely to look back and reflect on what you have done over the previous weeks or months, taking stock, observing changes and celebrating achievements. Even better if you can join together and see what others have been doing too in their part of the world, blogging is a wonderful way of making the world a smaller place. Christine over a Slow Living Essentials started this wonderful reflection and has now passed the baton onto Linda at Greenhaven for the monthly linkup here are mine for October...
...nourish with the weather cooling, although in some parts of the UK you would be forgiven for thinking that Autumn has passed them by, we have been eating a lot of soup. It is a welcome warm addition to our picnic lunch we eat at Forest School each week. I have also spent a large amount of time making food to take on an expedition/holiday we had at the end of the month. I am unable to eat food with preservatives in so any food we eat on holiday I usually precook and reheat or take the ingredients to cook whilst away. On an expedition it is so much quicker to precook all the meals but this does mean that I spend the week before cooking, cooking, cooking!
...prepare aside from the masses of food I prepared for the expedition I have also been doing a bit more preserving. This month I made Pickled Onions and Cucumbers (not together!) and with some apples that I ended up buying from the Famers Market, usually I go to a local orchard to pick my supply, I made Apple Butter and Chutney. I have now a good stocked pantry ready for the Winter, although the rosehip syrup I made last month has nearly gone now.
...reduce my husband is always saving things from being thrown in skips, he often comes home from work with items that 'might have a use one day'. For a good while we have been storing two cable drum ends, a further one has been put to good use under our large rainwater tank, but the other two were waiting for their future to be revealed. We attend a forest school each week and we were in need of a surface to work on, one that we could leave in the woods. I knew the cable drum would be perfect for the job. It has so far been used to plants tree seeds, water filtering and preparing apple cordial.
...green I made some more toothpaste at the beginning of the month, I am still using it daily (not whilst we were away tho' its a bit messy for that). I visited the Dentist for my six month check this month and he commented on the improvement in my teeth so it seems that although it is not the most pleasant taste/texture it is worth persevering with.
Last month I mentioned that I had started to trial a new method for washing my hair after swimming. I have continued to use this method though out October and it is great my hair is much improved. One week I tried not using the bicarb/vinegar wash post the Vitamin C rinse but my hair was very greasy by the end of the following week (I only wash my hair once a week) so it does need to washed and conditioned when I get home.
...grow I sowed some winter lettuce and salad greens this month. Some from seed and some from seedlings which I got for free from a local Apple Day. I am hoping that I will have some lovely salad to munch on throughout the winter. That said we are having such a mild autumn that the lettuces I sowed in the late summer are still thriving outdoors! I have also sown many tulip bulbs which I hope will flower in the Spring, provided the mice don't eat the bulbs first......
...create I have been knitting much more this month, in the evenings with the fire lit it is a great way to wind down. I have been adding rows to a scarf and cardigan which are still on the needles. I knitted up a hat for myself in the hope I could take it away with me, but I need to rip some of the rows and add to it as it is a bit short, I wanted it to cover my ears and it doesn't quite reach. I also sewed up another fabric bucket for my youngest to store her soft toys in and a handkerchief bag for storing our hankies in so that they are accessible downstairs rather than tucked away in a basket in my wardrobe.
...discover I have been reading a wonderful book about one of greatest loves, trees. I have enhanced my knowledge and I am still entranced by these marvellous plants.
...enhance I had been due to assess a group on an expedition in Scotland this month, it was the reason that we were going away ourselves. I had to make the heart rendering decision to pull the plug, made even worse as it was at the eleventh hour. The timing coincided with a vicious storm that swept through North West Scotland, a whole month of rain falling over a two day period (300mm) the streams were swollen and many roads were flooded. The month had been spend in organising this expedition and checking that the group were ready to go out into the hills. It will have to wait for another time.
...enjoy despite having to cancel the expedition we still had a memorable few days in Scotland. We camped the first night but it was so wet and windy we bailed out and stayed in a wee chalet for a few days hoping that the weather forecast was correct and there would be a small window of good weather later in the week. There was and we had the most amazing two nights on the shores of Loch Arkaig. The rain earlier in the week had filled the loch to overflowing (a good two or three feet over the wall you can see in the middle picture at the bottom left side of the page on the last link) the road was underwater so we offloaded our canoes and equipment, parked the car on safe high ground and canoed down the road to the loch! It was a memorable trip for so many reasons.