Sunday, 9 November 2014

This Weekend

On Friday morning I awoke to a gorgeous sunrise, full of dramatic dark blue clouds and pearlescent pink skies. It was glorious, but I knew from the old rhyme* that this meant that bad weather was on the way.

Sure enough, it was wet, windy and cold for most of Friday and Saturday morning. However, the rain cleared up in the afternoon, and as J was home from university for the weekend we went for a little shopping trip to Bristol. We often shop there, but there are still little pockets that we don't know so well. This time we needed to go a shop on the Christmas Steps, a place we've often walked past.

It's a historic street consisting of four steep flights of steps which has interesting independent shops along it. Here it is from halfway down.

The steps were first built in 1669 and are full of medieval features like this statue on a shop-front. Most of the buildings in the street are listed.

Here's a photo from the bottom of the steps looking up.

Next to the steps are Foster's Almshouses, with their own little medieval chapel, quirkily called The Chapel of the Three Kings of Cologne.

The finials on top of the little turrets and gables of the almshouses were highly ornate and detailed.

We have lived in this part of the West Country for over two decades and are still finding undiscovered gems close to home. Afterwards we went for a bit of a wander and came across some gorgeous shops and galleries, as well as a lovely little second-hand bookshop where we each treated ourselves to a book. P was in heaven, as bookshops are his favourite thing. I chose this poetry anthology - a bargain, as I'd been thinking of buying it full-price a while ago.

Back at home in the evening, I finished a seasonal crochet project, more of which next week, and made Sweet Potato and Ginger Soup from the recipe in the November issue of Country Living (my favourite magazine). Yum!

I've also fitted in a bit of baking; another gingery recipe, some Parkin, a traditional recipe from the north of England which seems to go with Halloween and Bonfire Night. I used this recipe and it's true that it does taste better after a couple of days in an air-tight container, rich, spicy and sticky.

Today is Sunday, and the sun has shone all day -  it was wonderful to have it back! The chrysanthemums which I bought a week and a half ago are still going strong, and I am really enjoying them and their distinctively autumnal fragrance.

Their petals are striped, a mix of pale and deep pink.

I spent the morning working in the garden: tidying, sweeping, cutting back dead vegetation and generally filling our wheely-bin with leaves. And in the afternoon we went out to our favourite farm shop for a cup of tea and a cheese scone together before J caught his train back to university. It's been such an unexpectedly lovely weekend: wonderful to have J home and to spend such a happy time exploring a new place with my family, as well as being able to crochet, bake and garden. Life doesn't get much better than that, I think!

* Red sky at night, shepherd's delight.
Red sky in the morning, shepherd's warning.


  1. We used to live down in Devon some years ago and although we visited Bristol for special shopping sprees (Christmas or birthdays) we never came across your discovery - looks amazing :) I have admit to loving your sky photos the best x

    1. It certainly was a dramatic sky, and I suspect that there are still interesting bits of Bristol that we haven't yet come across x

  2. I like very puch your sky photos !! they're amazing !! and thanks for the visit of Bristol !! nice from you ! Have a happy week !

  3. Oooo I can smell the Parkin from here! Looks so yummy :)

    1. It was good, but sadly there's none left - think I'l have to make some more x

  4. Hello Cathy

    The sky photos are beautiful. I live on the coast and love to either watch or be down on the sand at this time of day - just as the sun is rising.

    I like your pictures of Bristol, the steps look a bit precarious especially from the top.

    It's funny how you can live somewhere but still find little gems of interest.


    1. Skies are even better at the coast, aren't they? So much bigger and more expansive. Yes, it's fun to discover new places close to home x


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