2016: the year of spaciousness

Because there's more to life than work


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Spring outing

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Confession time: I bunked off yesterday (technically I’m not sure I can bunk off as I’m my own boss. But you know what I mean) and headed to one of my favourite bits of the countryside (see our visit last spring here) to enjoy the fabulous spring weather. We ran and walked around Beetham and Silverdale on the Lancashire/Cumbria border, an enchanting part of the world full of ruined towers, beautiful little villages and woods that run right down to the sea.

IMG_2721Our route took us past stately homes…

IMG_2727panoramic views…

IMG_2734hundreds of spring flowers…

IMG_2728and a real live fairy door!

IMG_2729Isn’t this the cutest thing you ever saw? It was just to the side of the path by a viewpoint known as the ‘Fairy Steps’ – a very narrow path up a limestone cliff – legend has it that if you reach the top without touching the sides you’ll see a fairy/get a wish. We didn’t manage it, but we did get to see the door. I would have loved this when I was little, and to be honest it quite made my day yesterday too 🙂

IMG_2730After that we headed downhill at a brisk rate for soup and cake at the utterly phenomenal Wolfhouse Kitchen. This cafe is tucked away in a quiet corner between the woods and the sea and serves the most wonderful cakes. Indeed it was so good that we forgot to take any pics of them in our greed, went for a three mile walk afterwards to walk off lunch, went back again for more cakes and coffee and forgot for a second time to take a picture. I had a rhubarb and vanilla friand first, and then a plum, marzipan and vanilla cake. OH had a strawberry, lemon and almond bundt – twice.

No, we didn’t need to eat much when we got in yesterday evening.

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Woodlands and seaside

We decided a couple of days ago that with the weather forecast being nice and settled, we were going to go for a run in Silverdale on Easter Monday. Silverdale is just over an hour’s drive from where we live, but it’s one of the best places you can imagine for a run. It’s a tiny area just below the Lake District with little hamlets nestling between ancient woodlands with beautiful paths criss crossing them, so although we’ve been going there for years it’s rare we do the same route twice. Also, because it’s just below the honeypot of the Lakes, it tends to be nice and quiet on Bank Holidays, and today was no exception.

The scenery is also really varied – woods, glades, views to distant snow covered hills, sandy beaches, sea and ancient ruins. All in an area about 5 miles by 5 miles. We ran past Arnside Tower, a 500 year old ruin that was once part of a string of similar defence towers protecting the locals from marauders. Pretty quiet on the marauding front today though, which was a relief as I couldn’t have run much faster than I already was!

IMG_1100After getting lost (there are hundreds of paths that just don’t appear on the map), we ate our cheese butties overlooking Morecambe Bay and watching the patterns the sun was making on the sea.

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After this, the path turns into a fantastic cliff top route right along the estuary looking across to the Lakes. IMG_1109

Normally at this time of year it’s full of flowers, but it’s been so cold that there were only a couple of green shoots showing. I was a bit disappointed, as the area has some of the best displays of wild daffodils that we’ve ever seen and we were hoping to catch a glimpse today. However, after we had both just said that they definitely weren’t going to be out …

IMG_1110…we turned a corner and there they were! It’s so rare to see wild daffodils  – the bank where these are must catch the sun well, and lots of other people going past were saying how fantastic it was to see them. They’re a much paler yellow than garden ones – more like the colour of primroses – and a lot smaller.

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IMG_1113 The tide was out so it was great to be able to get onto the beach and run along the shore back to the village for coffee and cake.

IMG_1115I would have taken some pictures of the amazing cakes we had at Wolf House, but frankly there wasn’t time to get the camera out of my backpack before they were a shadow of their former selves. Well, we had just had a really long run – although possibly we should have run back home again to work those calories off!! A fantastic day in wonderful surroundings – hope your Easter Monday was just as good!