I’ve been thinking a lot in the past few days about seasonality, especially the cyclical nature of the world around us.

Thanks to their, what I imagine to be, hefty social media advertising budget, you may well have heard of Ffern, the artisan perfumery based in south west England who create small batch, organic, seasonal fragrances which they release four times a year to members of their ledger at each solstice and equinox. I was absolutely enchanted by their idea, creativity, and ethos, and was lucky enough to be accepted onto their ledger just in time for their Autumn 2020 fragrance, which was divine.

Anyway – this year, they’re collaborating with a writer called Lia Leendertz to produce a monthly podcast focusing on what to look out for in nature, and what’s happening in the natural world around us. Whether that’s what to plant in your garden, the tides, weather or meteorological phenomena, it really is an absolute delight. You can find out more about it and give it a listen on their website:

Meanwhile, Jack and I have turned to Nigel Slater for some healthy, seasonal, vegetarian recipes with his magnificent two-parter ‘Greenfeast’, a couple of recipe books each tackling a different part of the year (Spring/Summer and Autumn/Winter). Now we’ve starting using some of the recipes, my mind has wandered back into a goal I sort of set myself last summer, which was to be that bit more in tune with nature, cook with seasonal ingredients, see and experience more of the world around us. Listening to the Ffern podcast has really helped revitalise that wish in me, too.

Especially as Jack and I consider moving home to be our second biggest goal of the year (getting married at number one), it makes me wonder if we really do try and move somewhere more rural. The more I think about it (and the older I get!) the more I feel that I’m rarely happier than trudging through the countryside in wellies on a long walk… moreover, especially where other people are few and far between..!

I know the country cottage is a pipe dream, but, a vegetable plot in the garden would be nice?

For now though, it’s time to boot up and head out with the dog, on a walk that I’m hoping will grant me further insight into the delights of January.

— Thomas

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