Do you know that old song "January" by Pilot? I have it stuck in my head on a permanent loop. Mainly thanks to the fact Mr. M walks around the house singing it: "January, sick and tired you've been hanging on me". And that pretty much sums up January, it hangs on you, like a grey coat you can't wait to shake off. As far as the allotment goes, January is a grim month.
I'm not going to lie, we're mainly fair-weather visitors to our plot. Some hardy souls have dug over and fully prepared their plots by now. We're not in that league. This January has been mainly damp and mild, so we haven't had those crisp, sunny but cold days to get out and about. Yep, January, you've been hanging on me that's for sure.
We took a walk down the allotment last week on a grey Sunday afternoon. Sometimes you just have to get out whatever the weather is doing. The allotment is in a sorry state. The battered old shed is leaning more that the Tower of Pisa, the grass has crept in and taken hold again, our purple sprouting broccoli looks moth-eaten and it's all a bit dank to be honest.
But in the spirit of optimism and looking forward, I've tried to think of some positives:
1) January is nearly over. Spring is getting closer.
2) It's 8 weeks until the clocks go forward and we get lighter evenings again. That means some precious after-school time on the plot with Magoo.
3) February means digging and preparing the plot. It's pretty cathartic, sloughing off the Winter drabness and turning over fresh soil ready for Spring seedlings.
4) This is a good time to give the plot an overhaul. Mr. M wants to make some raised beds out of recycled wood and we probably need to pull the sorry-looking shed down.
5) Magoo found a pretty, empty snail shell. Which is exactly how I like my snail shells - vacant. Slimy things.
6) Pleasantly surprised the leeks are still growing. They looked liked chives when we put them in, so didn't really expect them to cling on.
7) It's soon time to start planting some seeds. One of my favourite gardening activities.
8) We always try to grow something new each year. So we'll have to think about the crop we'd like to try in 2016.
9) My Mum has started to chit some potatoes already. Eating new potatoes that have only been out of the ground a short while is one of Summer's best foodie treats.
10) Did I mention Spring is nearly here?
If you've got an allotment, you might want to see some of the jobs The National Allotment Society suggest you do in January. It doesn't mention sitting on the sofa, eating chocolate and looking at seed catalogues...but it should do.
And if you've never heard the Pilot song, here it is. Think of it as my gift to you!
I am linking up with the beautiful "How Does Your Garden Grow" #HDYGG over on mammasaurus.co.uk
youbabymemummy.com and www.mrandmrstplusthree.com
"Country Kids" over on www.coombemill.com
"Happy Days Linky" over on www.whatkatysaid.com and www.quitefranklyshesaid.com
"The Mad Midweek Blog Hop" over on superbusymum.net
"Share With Me" over on www.letstalkmommy.com
"Whatever the Weather" over on monkeyandmouse.co.uk and www.lifeunexpected.co.uk