So we think it is fair to say summer seems to be here, it is lovely and warm, the sun is shining and the nights are lovely and long.
One of the reasons why we love living in the UK (apart from all the boring stuff that we all take for granted) is the seasons. Four very unique times, each one with its own beauty, challenges and seasonal foods!
Now as our little blog started in November we have treated you all to a variety of wholesome winter foodstuffs, some spring freshness and we are rolling full-steam towards refreshing summer dinners! There is something lovely about sitting down to enjoy a nice light dinner and salad with the sun glaring, a nice refreshing drink, all before taking a nice evening stroll in the countryside.
Now doesn’t that sound lovely? Just one slight problem at TPHQ, summer also seems to bring with it a catalogue of additional jobs that need doing…………..
A bright beam of sunlight points out that the windows need a good clean.
Weeds and grass grow at an immeasurable rate, and being the thrifty minded chap he is Ian insists on collecting up and storing grass and hay cuttings to keep the chickens in bedding throughout the colder months.
The warm light evenings mean wanting to extricate the table and chairs from the shed (another shed-clearing success story from the weekend), which then inevitably need to be re-stained (which means somehow stopping 3 curious cats jumping on them for 24 hours whilst they dry).
Oh yes, the cats. We love our 3 little cats very much, however their tendency to roll in soil, dust, coal and bark in the summer can become a little frustrating, as can the constant collection of small rodents and birds brought in for us as presents. We know that they are only doing what cats do and we do not resent them for it, it would be just nice if they sometimes showed the sofa and kitchen floor as much attention when it comes to cleanliness as they do their fur!
Do we moan too much? We don’t mean too, we really love the summer; home grown produce growing by the minute, dry and happy chickens (meaning lots of eggs), great local produce, more local fairs/markets, fantastic sunsets, being able to sit out for dinner on your newly stained (or not) table and chairs.
The summer also means 1 other thing, Becksie and Ian’s favourite fruits, gooseberries and raspberries!
Both are fantastically tasty and in season for the summer. Ian’s parents have grown raspberries for as long as he can remember, Grandpa Pugh has even constructed a bird/rodent proof walk in cage with which to protect his crop, and in Ian’s opinion there is nothing more refreshing in the summer than fresh raspberries. Becksie is also a big raspberry fan, however her one true fruit love has always been the tangy taste of gooseberries, Grandad Gray has come across a small supply of gooseberries which we intend to make best use of!
And so today Becksie has been shopping – more of that soon – and we have some delightful food with which to start whipping up some summer treats which we can share with you, now we just need to wait a few more weeks until the gooseberries and raspberries are fully in season and we can tell you (and probably go on and on about) all of our favourite things to do with them and just how much we love them!