I've visited the Lake District a few times now and I swear it has its own microclimate that's completely separate from the rest of the UK. Sun follows cloud follows mist follows rain follows wind follows drizzle. All in the space of an hour. Or so it seems. At the weekend, we went from putting suncream on the boys one day, to wishing we'd brought more layers the next. From a mild 20 degrees on the Saturday to a shivering 5 degrees on the Sunday. And the change in the landscape? It felt like summer was truly on its when while we were visiting Wray Castle but it seemed like we'd skipped straight to winter while we were walking along the banks of Lake Windermere. The days couldn't have been more different.
Shots of tall trees with blue skies and the sun's rays peeking though always make me smile. I used to work in the automotive industry and you can guarantee that they featured in pretty much every brand video we made, and a lot of adverts too. I can understand why. Spending time outdoors on such a beautiful day, surrounded by nature with the sun warming your skin is just so good for the soul. But would I buy from a brand that hinted that this kind of lifestyle could be achieved on a daily basis just by buying one of their cars? Actually, maybe. I'm a sucker for a great marketing campaign, I can't lie.
But in the UK, I think we learn to love the grey skies and dark waters too, even if we do like to moan about them. Come autumn, I see so many Facebook and Twitter updates full of excitement at being able to wear boots again and hunting for the perfect winter coat. I guess we're romantics at heart and love our cosy nights in as much as midsummer evenings out. Good job, really, as unless we move to California, there's no escape.
Come rain or come shine, if you're ever in the Ambleside area, head to Chesters by the River. It's the most amazing café, bakery and shop that came recommended to me by @littlepeagreen on Instagram. We went for breakfast on the Sunday morning and it was wonderful. Chesters is named after very lovely but very naughty English Bull Terrier and my boys loved seeing his little face on the t-shirts that the staff wore.
I mentioned in this post about the work that the RSPCA do but just wanted to share with you that since the beginning of January, they've received nearly 4,000 phone calls about abandoned animals. That's over 30 a day! If you're considering giving a pet a second chance in life, and maybe looking to find your very own lovely but cheeky English Bull Terrier like Chester, you can see more information about rehoming and adoption on the RSPCA website.