Season Of Mists & Mellow Fruitfulness – John Keats


The clocks have gone back, and the nights are drawing in. Time to embrace the glorious autumn colours, and cosy up in front of a fire.  Those of you who are well organised (we exclude ourselves from this group!) will no doubt be making  chutneys, and other preserves, and stocking up on ingredients  for ‘stir up’ Christmas pudding Sunday later in the month.

If cooking isn’t your thing then it’s time to turn your attention to home interiors. For those fortunate enough to have a fireplace to accommodate a fire or wood burner you won’t regret investing in one (making sure of course that your chimney has been swept first), there are plenty to choose from including some great designs from Jotul, Charnwood, and Chesneys, and if you’re looking for an alternative fuel that doesn’t require a chimney you could try Ecosmart Fire.  Of course not all of us can have a fire but there are other ways of keeping your feet toastie warm including the addition of a warm shaggy rug, Modern Rugs has some great designs to choose from, alternatively if you’re already doing some home renovations you may like to consider underfloor heating, it works with many different kinds of flooring including engineered wood and tiles, Tile Mountain offers a good choice of electric underfloor heating and tile options.

And when you’ve finished inside, don’t forget the wildlife outside. Birds, hedgehogs and other animals really appreciate food being left out for them as it gets colder, and if you’re not sure which is the right type for them then take a look at products from the The RSPB and The RSPCA, both organisations will benefit from any purchase you make.

Finally after a great walk on a Sunday afternoon return home to enjoy, a pot of tea, toasted crumpets and of course a favourite teatime cake!

Making The Most Of Longer Summer Days


June signifies the beginning of summer, longer days, more sunshine (hopefully), the opportunity to spend more time in the garden, and planning trips to all those places you have been promising to visit!

As a nation of dog lovers it’s a great month to be out and about with your canine companion, and to carry out some basic health checks on your pet.  With early summer comes the moulting of a dog’s undercoat, and the arrival of the dreaded ticks which can cause not only soreness and general discomfort to your pet, but as bloodsucking parasites they also carry disease.  Regular grooming (preferably outside) will help remove excess hair whilst a good shampoo and a quick check for ticks will help keep their coats healthy, you can even try giving them a massage with a specialist brush such as the Massage Slicker from Mikki Pet Products. Remember nutrition plays a major part in how good your dog feels and looks, so check you are feeding the correct level of oils such as Omega 3 and 6 which help keep the skin and coat moist, supple and healthy.

With the dog all sorted it’s time to get out and enjoy long walks and visits to the thousands of pet friendly places around the UK.  The National Trust has many beautiful properties which welcome dogs, and you can check out dog friendly beaches around the UK via the Good Beach Guide

Have a great summer and enjoy our fabulous countryside.

Spring Is In The Air

At last the sun appears and the temperature becomes a little kinder!  Carpets of snowdrops have given way to daffodils and primroses, and the garden birds are very busy collecting material for making their nests.  All this activity may inspire you to think about spring cleaning or something we find far more therapeutic – going through the wardrobe and discarding items we haven’t worn for ages, turning out books, and unwanted gifts, and sorting them into boxes to take to either the charity shop, recycling, or giving to a friend we know will make use of them.

This activity can extend to the kitchen and bathroom too; as most of us have accumulated vast amounts of food items, such as finding you have five varieties of sugar, various bottles of oils, half empty bags of flour, every variety of pasta known to man, an assortment of spices and various jars of pulses. When it come to the bathroom, unwanted gifts of soap, hand cream, bath oil, body powders, an assortment of face cloths, and towels that have past their best are usually on our list.


The upside of all this sorting out is that you will have room to add some new items to your home.  Venture into the garden and pick some spring flowers and budding twigs, putting them in a pretty vase or jug better still treat yourself to new vase or jug.  If fresh flowers are not available think about a fabulous dried flower arrangement from Pollyfields

Think about a new rug, or runner for the hall, and if the budget will stretch a larger or more extravagant rug for the sitting room or bedroom.  Look no further than Modern Rugs for inspiration, who literally have hundreds from which to choose across a vast range of price points.

If a major project is on your list for 2017 such as a kitchen take a look at Rational  who have a great range from which to choose.  And of course if you are renewing your kitchen you will probably want tiles.  Try looking at Tile Mountain whose vast range covers every tiling surface, walls, floors, work surfaces and so on.

Whatever your spring clear out extends to be sure to enjoy it and share the experience with friends over a well earned coffee or glass of wine.