October Review: Mostly Puddles
Here’s my review of the my favourite month of the year…
October things: huge house spiders, the heaviest rain, diamond rain drops on spider webs, very muddy puddles, apples, lichen, toadstools, soggy moss, orange leaves.
I tend to feel good in the autumn. More grounded. Moored, somehow. I feel that especially this year. Since Trix joined the family I’ve felt more at home in myself. Content. I’ve been reading a lot of Rosamund Pilcher (not sure why, really. I started and now I can’t stop). I don’t really identify with anyone in a Rosamund Pilcher novel (all her female characters are imposingly glamorous, fill their houses with cut flowers and drink whisky during the day then drive) but this quote from September chimed with me:
“She preferred to stay right here, where her roots were deep, surrounded by a countryside she had known since she was child. As for the weather, she disregarded it, caring not if it froze or snowed or blew or rained or scorched, provided she could be out of doors and part of it all.”
The best thing about October (and there’s always lots of good things about October) was half-term. This was my first experience of enforced school-term holidays. We stayed at home, Ross took most of the week off, and had the most marvellous time gallivanting round the Borders. Lots of outdoor cuppas (why does tea taste so much better outside? Especially if you have a wee bit of chocolate). There was so much delightful Octoberriness out there: apples, pumpkins, conkers, fungi, waterfalls, leaves. And almost everything was free. It felt like we collected every single conker in the Borders. We left none for the other kids (and now Piglet is dealing with end-of-conker-season disappointment. Autumn is bittersweet!). It was just good to blow off some steam and congratulate ourselves for surviving term one of school nursery. A little time to take a deep breath, clear the nostrils of the endless nursery colds, and get ready for another term.
Was it a really wet October? I seem to have spent most of the month 1. Getting rained on 2. Trying to persuade Piglet not to splash in puddles with his good shoes on (a waste of breath) 3. washing wet socks and drying shoes on the radiator 4. wrestling him into puddle suits 5. watching him jump in puddles for hours. The boy loves to puddle!
The clocks went back last night. It is 9.30am and I’ve already eaten half a pack of biscuits and drunk two cans of Diet Coke. I didn’t approve of the whole clock-change-idea before I had kids (you can’t just change time! The fabric of the universe will crumble into chaos!) but post-kids it seems even more daft. Piglet asked at 6am if it is morning yet. I had no answer for him: it is morning if you are a rabbit, morning if no one told you about the clock change, but not morning for those of us obeying the strange constructs of our society.
I’m absolutely flabbergasted that it is nearly November. Who stole October? I am not a small-business-owner that is ready for the Christmas season. I’m fairly sure it is still August really. I’m trying to be gentle with myself about my business achievements this year. I’m celebrating the little wins (i.e. ticking over, surviving) and trying not to think too hard about the other bits (like not having told my brick-and-mortar stockists about my Christmas things yet). I’m burying my head in the sand about Royal Mail Strikes and the cost of living crisis and what happens when my measely maternity pay finishes in November. The baby needs me. She’s not a baby who naps solo. That’s ok, she’s just a baby, I need her too. I’ve got plenty of my life left to do really efficient work. But please, someone pause November for a fortnight to let me catch up.
Scroll down for this month’s sketchbook pages plus some crafty projects with Piglet.