…snow, snow, snow, stories, studios and soufflés…

…the snow has drifted and danced its way around the farm all day.  It is seemingly relentless.  The sky is leaden and heavy, the landscape blindingly white and the snowflakes keep falling.  I am distracted from what I am supposed to be doing – painting – and instead I’m increasingly aware of my isolation, as the meringue-like drifts grow higher up the front door, and I wonder how my man will ever get home…



I have however had a few rare hours this morning in my studio painting, sketching and sorting…



I have also been writing and illustrating a series of children’s stories, the one today involving two little dogs and a family of field mice.



A recent trip to the children’s section of Aardvark Books in Brampton Bryan – an amazing emporium of first editions and rare books – has further inspired me.  Here are a few of my favourites that I found –



…this illustration captures the desperately sad moment before the owl bites off  little grey hare’s tail in payment for telling her where to buy carrot seeds – somehow I don’t think that my stories will be quite so nightmarish.


We have a new addition to the Hillpike clan – and a potential future star for my stories –  in the shape of a rather naughty, long- legged lurcher, Jemima.  She is the dearest thing although Tigga is reserving judgement – she has been rather perplexed by the snow and would rather hide in her basket…


As the cold sets in, I am looking for warmth and sustenance in the kitchen, and with Grandma coming for supper tonight, I have sought the help of my ever faithful Kitchen Diaries by Nigel Slater – which I delve into to find inspiration on a particular day.  Tonight I will be making his 30th January, sausage, salami and lentil hotpot, followed by his St Valentine’s Day Chocolate soufflés.  I can however trump Nigel’s offerings as unlike him on this day several years ago, rather than being stung by needles of sleety rain, we are huddled under the thickest blanket of snow.

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3 Responses to …snow, snow, snow, stories, studios and soufflés…

  1. Crease says:

    After the indignity of getting our car stuck in one of said snowdrifts and subjecting your man to an hour of digging and scraping and tugging with Landy, happy to report that skies are blue and sun is shining bright in NYC…..but we only got here having delivered little man to Wales thanks to the shropshirelards xxx

  2. Beautiful illustrations dear Lard. xxx

  3. Glad my bay tree outside the kitchen window is flourishing!

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