Woodland wandering

Woodland light

Sacred light in the woodland

“I sit beside the fire and think
Of all that I have seen
Of meadow flowers and butterflies
In summers that have been

Of yellow leaves and gossamer
In autumns that there were
With morning mist and silver sun
And wind upon my hair…

– J.R.R. Tolkien

Last Sunday was a glorious day. Mum, Rich and I took ourselves out for an amble amongst the crisp autumn leaves, exploring our local Wildlife Trust site. The ancient woodland area is like a little secret, tucked away on a sandy ridge with unexpected heather heaths and dense gorse mixed with birch, beech and chestnut trees. It feels like taking a step back in time when we visit, like stepping into an alternative world that sits quietly next to our busy, modern and noisy one.

Woodland in autumn

It was lunchtime when we took our walk and the sun was already sinking in the sky. But the effect was startling and beautiful, as the ‘sacred light’ shone through the tangled boughs and rusty autumn leaves. Squirrels were still burying acorns below the rows of lime trees, which looked stoic and majestic in all their autumn glory.

Lime trees in autumn

These kinds of days are amongst my favourite sorts of days, along with the first truly warm days of spring. I just love experiencing the different seasons that we’re so fortunate to have here in England. Soon we’ll be enveloped in winter, when the garden goes to sleep and hours of daylight are even more precious.

For me, a wander in nature, when it’s at its most magnificent, is just the best kind of food for the soul.

A carpet of autumn leaves

We started the #mugappreciationsociety

My friend Maria – also known as Feisty Tapas  – and I have been working together for over one and a half years on the same project, and over that time have discovered a mutual love of food (despite the fact that I’m vegan and Maria is Spanish and is obsessed with chorizo), social media, blogging and… mugs! So after chatting over our respective morning cuppas at the creative agency where we both work (I had hot orange, Maria is a coffee fiend) we had a fun little brainstorm about sharing our love for mugs on Instagram.

Maria has been encouraging me to Instagram more and more, as there are huge communities out there dedicated to all the things I love – growing your own, veganism, good food, CAKE (lots of cake) and wildlife friendly gardening. And mugs. Mugs are great and I use them for pretty much all tipples… hot chocolate (with hazelnut milk), orange squash, herbal tea, wine, G&T, and I imagine I’ll be enjoying my forthcoming batch of sloe gin in a mug too. I’ll even eat homemade soup out of a large mug. I have no shame. I just prefer drinking out of mugs, and there are so many designs that reflect my general ethos on life. If it’s got any kind of wildlife on it, I’m all over it. Flowers? Yes please. Cats? Everybody needs at least one cat mug in their life! And the bigger the mug, the better.

But let’s rewind. On spying my very floral Waitrose mug on my desk at work, Maria encouraged (read: told) me to Instagram it. We had a little think about whether we should encourage others to do the same. I flippantly suggested that we tag the pictures the #mugappreciationsociety although at first Maria wasn’t too convinced. “Isn’t it a bit long?” she asked before doing some cursory research and declaring that perhaps it was the hashtag we should go for. So we did.

Where it all began - image ©Feisty Tapas

Where it all began – image ©Feisty Tapas

Maria has a substantial following on Instagram and tagged a few people to join in with our #mugappreciationsociety. And then it exploded. We’ve gone international and there is a LOT of love out there for mugs. So feel free to join in with us. Whether it’s a one-off prized possession, charity shop find, retro, a little chipped and battered or a pristine tea cup and saucer (cups are welcome too!), then just tag #mugappreciationsociety and you’ll be welcomed into the fold 🙂 Find Maria at @feistytapas and me right here: @lunalucy


Thanks, Richard Briers :)

Rest in Peace, Richard Briers. The Good Life was a show that helped kick-start a revolution that we’re still feeling the positive effects of today, and he will certainly be missed from our screens in this household. So thanks for the Good Life and everything else before, after and in between!