Regeneration: The Rescue of a Wild Land by Andrew Painting

Regeneration is my brother’s book about his time working as an ecologist in the Cairngorms in Scotland. Regeneration is my brother’s book. Which makes writing about it that bit more complicated. But, fortunately, it’s a really good book. A lot of people have already written about it, using words like “ground-breaking” and “remarkable”, so we’ve…

Happy World Poetry Day!

“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” This famous quote from Mary Oliver’s poem, The Summer Day, is something I think about a lot these days. It’s a poem – a very beautiful one – about paying attention to the small things in the world. Read…

Slow

Have you ever held a smooth pebble in your pocket? I often find one or two in mine, souvenirs from beach or river walks with the children. I love holding them and turning them over in the palm of my hand, these small, smooth tokens that have travelled years and distances until time and water…

Small Things

Every now and then, either in my journal or here on my blog, I write a list of Small Things. These are the little moments filling me with joy at the time.  It’s become a habit now, but it all started several years ago, when I was going through the heartache of infertility. Around the same…

Fruit

Right now, there are so many voices online, telling us what should matter or not matter to us, how we can achieve x, y and z in our careers, how we should parent, even how we should practise self care. And while some of these voices are helpful and encouraging and good, we can end…

This Week

Like everyone else, I had all sorts of plans for this week. High hopes, in fact. As in previous years, the first week of January was to bring new levels of calm, health and organisation and it was going to be great! I looked ahead to the few child free hours I had planned in…

Seasons

I came home from work the other evening to a glowing fire, snuggly children, twinkling lights and a bowl of warm, spicy pasta. Earlier in the evening, still at work, I’d soaked in the cool air, the dark silhouettes of trees, the sound of fast-running water from the nearby stream. It’s the season for all…

Heads, shoulders, knees, toes…

We’ve got a lot of heads working hard right now, researching, thinking, analysing, planning. Asking questions about big things like economy and death rates and poverty. A lot of heads that are clever and working hard, and some that are less so. Heads belonging to leaders or politicians or scientists and to the rest of…

On Finding Your ‘Thing’

I’m a firm believer that we are all made unique for a reason. We are made to do our ‘thing’, as part of a community of others doing theirs. It may take a lifetime to find that thing; or maybe we have different roles to play in different seasons of our lives. Maybe sometimes we…

Life Lately

There are times in life when things that you barely knew were beginning suddenly come together. The past month or so has been like that for me, as I have tentatively launched a little business alongside my work as a teacher. Now that I have made that first step of having a play with my…

On Contentment

This picture is my way of trying to capture something profound that I’ve been re-learning lately. As I write, I’m sat quiet in our kitchen with our two children on either side of me, both pairs of eyes glued to screens. It’s not a perfect moment, yet somehow I find myself perfectly content. I’ve been…