Spring Blossom, A Mini-Break and Outlander Again – Little Loves

It seems like a while since I last wrote a Little Loves update (which of course it is, as in April I was enjoying the benefits of a digital detox). We’ve had a lovely start to Spring here, with some beautiful weather, a campervan trip to Beauly, and all the usual May offerings like cherry blossom and long evenings in the sun. I’ve found myself wishing more than once that there were twelve Mays on the calendar – all that new life bursting out into the world really is quite awe-inspiring, isn’t it?

Apple blossom against blue sky

Beauly, near Inverness
A snap from our trip to Beauly in April
Photo of feet in sea
Enjoying a paddle in the sunshine
Cows looking over fence

But June, July and the rest all have their own delights to offer us, don’t they? And speaking of delightful things, grab a cuppa and settle in for my favourite Little Loves of Spring!


The digital hiatus I took in April meant that I did a lot more reading than normal – I’ll be updating on that shortly. For the moment, I’ll just mention the book I’m reading at the moment – Voyager by Diana Gabaldon, the third outing in the Outlander series (if you follow me regularly, you’ll be in no doubt that I’m a fan). I had put off reading this book for a while, because to be honest, it wasn’t my favourite of the TV series (Confusingly, I am a season ahead with the TV show). I have to admit that every time the main characters leave the Scottish coastline (as they do again in this book), my interest tends to wane a tiny bit. I did, however, thoroughly enjoy season four of the show, which isn’t set in Scotland (despite being filmed here), so I am obviously fickle and prone to contradicting myself. And I’m actually enjoying the book a lot more than I thought I would – all 1059 pages of it (which actually makes me feel a lot more hopeful about my plans to read War and Peace this year over the long summer break.)

Voyager (Outlander 3) book on grass with coffee cupWATCHED

We haven’t been watching too much TV lately, preferring to make the most of the longer evenings before they leave us. But my husband and I did watch Dirty John last month (crikey!), and really enjoyed Afterlife, a drama about life after loss with Ricky Gervais. I found it funny, dark, and genuinely heart-warming (the humour is about as close to the bone as you can get, though, and it’s definitely not one for watching with children). Speaking of the smalls though, we’ve been enjoying making our way through all four seasons of A Series of Unfortunate Events with them, and joining our eldest in watching every behind-the-scenes/special feature programme he can find on the Harry Potter series (he’s finished all seven books now and is still seeking out every last bit of trivia he can get!)


Again, I haven’t heard too many podcasts lately – I’m going through another stage of trying to keep my dog-walking time free of headphones and general information overwhelm. But I do check in on my favourites, and loved listening to Dr Chatterjee’s interview with Matt Haig on his Feel Better, Live More show the other week. Matt always speaks so eloquently on issues surrounding mental health and his personal struggles with anxiety, depression and panic disorder. I found it a really inspiring conversation to listen to (I can also recommend Dr Chatterjees’ latest book, The Stress Solution – but more on that in a future reading post).


Recently, I’ve been enjoying going out for runs with our dog Brody and making the most of our new running lead, which I wear secured to a belt around my waist (it also has pockets for a phone, dog bags etc., which is really handy). It means I can run hands-free and Brody can get the benefit of some extra exercise – often dragging me along at speeds I’d rather not be going, mind you – but a good work out for us both in any case.

Dog on running lead at beach

Which is probably just as well, because at the weekend, I made the decision to fire off an eleventh-hour entry to a local running event (the UK’s most northerly 10K, at the Castle of Mey here in Caithness). So I’ll be needing some of that extra exercise. I’m finding running fantastic for my mental health (I touched on that in this blog post for Mental Health Awareness Week last week ). Maybe not so much right now though – I have to admit I’m feeling slightly daunted at the prospect of taking part in an ‘official’ running event. Not so much the actual running bit, but all the stuff that goes around it, like registration and car parking (ridiculous, I know!) This year I’ve been trying to push my comfort zones a bit in situations where I think it might benefit me, despite my anxieties. Fingers crossed when the big day arrives I can put my worries to one side and just enjoy what promises to be a very scenic run!


We’re heading for a busy spell here over the next month or so with sports days, end of term events and my eldest son’s final weeks at primary school (cue lots of sobbing from yours truly). In the background to all this, I’m busy writing for a local magazine and trying to get the second draft of my book finished before the summer holidays arrive. At this stage, I’d normally be counting down to the end of term, but this year I want to hold on to every last lingering moment.

Kids running at Holbrn Head, CaithnessLife, eh? Forever changing and evolving.

See you again in June for another round up of the month in the shape of Little Loves.


Joining up with Sincerely Anna and the Little Loves linky.

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