It isn't all about trips abroad and fancy treats and meals in restaurants here.
No, most of the time it's the simple stuff that brings a smile or two.
Like a pile of books from the library. Yep, I joined. Or, to be absolutely correct, re-joined after a very long gap. The same library that I was a member of as a young girl when only two books, one fiction, one non fiction, could be borrowed. Now I can choose twenty. The same library in which my best friend at school had a Saturday job and later worked in as a proper librarian. It seems so much smaller these days. Or maybe it's that I'm so much bigger. Or because the tall, dark wood bookshelves have been replaced with low level white units. On the day I visited there was just me and a couple of older men, one with a hacking cough, the other wondering loudly when the tea and biscuits would be brought round. It was a bitterly cold and windy day and I suspect, from their total disinterest in the books, papers and computers, that they were simply seeking warmth and a comfy-ish chair each. And that they were shortly to be disappointed on the refreshments front.
Like a long walk locally on a sunny day after a couple of hours of yoga stretching. It was bright and sunny, cold and muddy and we all needed hosing down once back at home but it was so good to just be out there, tramping the waterlogged paths, breathing deeply.
Like a cracking series on the telly. I loved the BBC's Dickensian, which concluded last night when the ghost of Jacob Marley came a-knocking, though I'm aware it's had a mixed reception. So many familiar characters, from the raft of Dicken's novels with their familiar endings, all criss-crossing and jostling each other as they go about their daily business. There's smog, gaslight, hunger, murder, pies, gin, deceit and much more as the back stories are cleverly woven into one big whodunnit. Highly recommended.
Like a batch of croissants or Singing Hinnies for a late, post dog walking breakfast. Hinnies (recipe at the end of the post) are a simple traditional griddle scone, a lot like a Welsh cake, from a bit further north than here. Enjoyed with a slick of butter (and vegan alternative for yours truly) and an untraditional sprinkling of sugar whilst still warm.
Like a picture of a little someone apparently channelling his inner David Brent.
Singing Hinnies (Makes 6-7 hinnies)
4 ozs plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
2 ozs soft butter (or dairy-free spread for vegan version)
Generous 1 oz currants
Milk to mix
1. Add the baking powder and salt to the flour in a bowl and stir well.
2. Rub in the butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
3. Add the currants and mix in enough milk (about 4 tbsp, added a little at a time) to form a soft but not sticky dough.
4. Roll the dough out on a lightly floured board to a depth of a £1 coin.
5. Cut into 2'' rounds.
6. Heat a very lightly greased frying pan and cook the hinnies on both sides until golden brown (about 4 minutes per side).
7. Serve (sprinkled with sugar if desired) whilst still warm with butter, jam or whatever takes your fancy.