Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Welcoming Autumn in The New Forest

Autumn is my favourite season. It always has been, and it always will be. Autumn is the season or cosy weather; fat raindrops and crisp mornings, blue skies and wet leaves underfoot.

The sky looks changes from hour to hour, and the air smells of damp wood, bonfires and mud. Windows steam up while hot comfort food is cooked in the kitchen. Mashed potato, shepherd's pie, casseroles and stews. Toes are tucked up in warm socks after trudging through the damp and cold, and coats and hats are perpetually wet. Soup is a staple at lunchtime, and it's never too early to don your pyjamas.  Free moments can be spent curled in an armchair, reading a book while the rain lashes on the glass. Over-sized jumpers, leggings and practical black boots are a uniform, enlisted to fight the ever-changing weather.

I greet Autumn with excitement - I prefer layering up in cosy knits to donning shorts in the summer. Nothing beats pie and mash, and cosy evenings in with loved ones.

This year, Autumn appeared suddenly. After a warm September which seemed to drag on forever, the trees became orange overnight and, sadly, the weather deteriorated within hours. We are now well-and-truly in the throes of my favourite month, and despite the constant dampness of my socks and a hankering for too much hot chocolate, I'm welcoming it with open arms.

Last week I spent Sunday in the beautiful New Forest, and I saw it as my moment to welcome Autumn back into my life once more. Where better to see the stunning change in colours, and watch nature ease through it's cycle?

It was a beautiful clear day. The sky was blue after the rain throughout the previous day, and the ground had yet to become boggy. Days in the New Forest should always start with a roast dinner, of course - and that's exactly what we did.

After a little background research, we ended up in The New Forest at Ashurst - a quaint little place with lovely decor and a mean carvery. My plate was piled high with succulent meat, crispy potatoes and all the sides and vegetables you can imagine. In a few months, the pub will no doubt have a roaring fire and holly all around - and I'm tempted to return. It was the perfect start to our day out.

After such a big roast, what else was there to do but walk? We found a place to park and meandered through the forest, across open spaces and bridges, admiring the colours and peace-and-quiet. Nature was all around us and we spotted wildlife with every step. I nearly trod on a furry little chap, which turned out to be a Pale Tussock Moth caterpillar (I shamelessly googled him afterwards) - he was fascinating, and I watched him for age, crawling over the forest floor. We were also joined by wood peckers and a number of birds and New Forest Ponies.

Ending the day with locally-produced ice cream (Apple Strudel flavour, which fitted in with the season perfectly!) I headed home for a hot shower and Netflix in bed.

if you haven't visited the New Forest before, I can't recommend it enough - it's a wonderful place to get a breath of fresh air away from the hubub of busy city life; stunning in every season and the host of many-a lovely pub and more.

It was the perfect start to my favourite month, and I can't wait to make the most of it before the bareness of winter arrives.

Here's to the weeks of soggy feet, hot showers and candlelight to come.


  1. I LOVE the New Forest. My family are from that area and I have so many great memories of walks and picnics and drives :) it's so gorgeous!

    The roast looks divine (HELLO RED CABBAGE LOVE) so definitely popping that on my list for next time I'm down! :) xx

    Little Miss Katy | UK Lifestyle & Fashion

  2. What a perfect Autumn adventure!

    Well done on going out for a walk after all that food. I think I would have been tempted to just go home and have a nana nap!

    Loving the sound of apple strudel ice-cream ... yummmm!

    Reading this whilst eating a v boring and cold salad - fail!

    Chloe x

  3. I live quite near to The New Forest, yet I haven't been since I was about 8! It's lovely and so enchanting. I'm particularly jealous of the Sunday Roast... haven't had one of them for months! And the apple strudel flavoured ice cream? Possibly my favourite dessert ever so I'd love to try the ice cream!

    Imogen // imogenscribbles

  4. o I love the new forest so much! we used to go every year around this time for a week at the holiday park called sandy balls, the last time we did was 4 years ago, and the last time I went for a weekend was 3 years :( I miss it so much, its my hearts home! its such a beautiful place, if you ever want to go on holiday there I suggest sandy balls :)

    Catherine x

  5. Your way of describing autumn is lovely, and accurate :)

    And that forest looks so magical!