Simple pleasures for May

1 Take a walk outside.

public bridleway Slamseys Farm, Great Notley
In May, the English countryside is at its best. Everywhere is lush and verdant so that looking across the fields it seems that every shade of green is featured. Cow parsley fills the verges, the birds are singing and some days the sun shines too.

2 Smell the blossom.

apple blossom
The crab apple tree is so smothered in blossom that it looks like a bride on her wedding day but my favourite blossom in the garden is this pink blossom on the apple tree.

3 Visit the seaside.

Slamseys Rose Gin
The seaside out of season is a very different place to the seaside in the middle of summer being less crowded and quieter. And colder. This week, we dragged an Australian teenager to the Essex seaside at Mersea Island and I fear she was less than impressed. The tide was out so the view from the beach hut was of grassy sand, an expanse of mud leading to the water and a decommissioned power station and a wind farm across the estuary. Not quite Forty Baskets Beach. But we still dug holes and made sand castles on the beach, ate fish & chips and took home a pint of the tastiest prawns for supper.
Please excuse the product placement. We took the opportunity to take some photos of Beth’s gin and seem to have taken none of the sea.

4 Make

washing line bowl
Photograph courtesy of Elizabeth at

Make a basket like Elizabeth’s beautiful washing line baskets. At last I’ve found a way of using up all those pesky scraps of fabric that are stuffed into bags. I hoped that one day I’d find a use for the little fabric cords I made last year and finally I’ve found it by using Elizabeth’s technique to make a miniature basket.
miniature basket made with fabric cords
Naturally, the tiny basket is of little more use than the bare cords but I tell myself, it’s all about the process, rather than the finished object. Next on the list is a full sized version using washing line.

5 Spend time with family and friends.

Because, honestly, isn’t that the best pleasure in life?