Today’s guest picture comes from Venetia, my Somerset correspondent. She had a hint of solstice sunshine in Glastonbury this morning.
We didn’t even have a hint of sunshine here, as it was sub zero and grey when we got up, and it took until midday for the temperature to climb up to 0°C.
A welcome visit from Margaret for coffee and a ginger biscuit was the only thing that disturbed a quiet morning in. Oddly enough, there was not even a suspicion of icy roads outside, and after coffee both Mrs Tootlepedal and I cycled off on various shipping tasks.
From time to time, I watched the birds. I was happy to see the feeder being quite well used. The jackdaws are back pecking at the lawn again. I spotted this one doing a little strutting between pecks.
It was so gloomy that it was sometimes hard to tell what sort of bird was on the feeder . . .
. . . but enough arrived to make me refill it after coffee, and subsequently a robin arrived and brightened up the day.
A coal tit was less obliging about posing for the camera.
It wasn’t really a day for spending too much time trying to get good bird shots, but I was happy to see chaffinches, siskins and goldfinches tucking in.
I dug up a couple of leeks and made leek and potato soup for lunch.
It was a calm day, so in spite of the chilly temperature, I decided to go for a walk after lunch. This decision was rescinded almost as soon as it was made, because as I was putting my thick socks on, I could hear rain pattering on the Velux windows. If there had been enough light to take some interesting pictures, I might still have gone out, but poor light, steady rain and low temperatures did not make an enticing prospect. I laid aside my thick socks and did a puzzle in the newspaper instead.
We brought the spruce tree which we had cut on the moor yesterday into the house, and it magically transformed from an unwanted environmental interloper into a lovely Christmas tree.
I am hoping that it might get a little added ornamentation as time goes on.
I did rouse myself enough to spend an hour on the bike to nowhere in the garage, buoyed up by a nonnette de Dijon which had just arrived in a hamper of French goodies sent to us by our younger son.
As our older son has sent us a hamper too, we will not be short of interesting things to eat over the festive season.
Mrs Tootlepedal has finished arranging her birthday flowers, so to add a little colour to an otherwise grey post, I took pictures of the three vases. One of them has flowers which have lasted from last month.
A Zoom with my siblings rounded off the active part of the day. A look at the weather forecast suggests that tomorrow might be even gloomier than today, a thing which I did not think was possible. Still, there are several more nonnettes in the packet, so I may find a way to pass the time indoors.
A chaffinch hovered at the feeder for just long enough for me to get an almost passable flying bird of the day.