Of Blackberries and Back To School

IMG_3404The gorgeous girl started back at school today. I know, it’s odd to start back on a Friday, but that’s how the school has chosen to schedule it this year (I think we get an extra day off somewhere else). And it’s kind of nice, in a way. Only one day at school means that, after the shock of an early start this morning, we then have the weekend to recover and get ready for the week ahead. And it wasn’t so bad. We even left the house early – though a blister from the new school shoes meant our walk was a bit slower than usual.

IMG_3389And now I miss her. I know I write about this every time she goes back to school, but it’s true. For me the end of summer holidays is bittersweet. I miss the golden days, the feeling of having no schedule and nowhere particular to be. I miss the time spent with her, because I know that next summer she will be different, and the older she gets the less likely it is she’ll want to hang out with me. Ever since she started school I’ve felt this way. Still, I count my blessings and get on with things.

And I do have a lot to get on with. Work needs to pick up again, so I will be getting back to writing and pitching and formatting, getting my next book ready to publish. There’s promotion and scheduling and all that stuff, plus catching up with my bloggy pals and seeing what you’ve all been up to over the summer.

IMG_3412So what have I done today, on my first day alone since July? I went blackberrying. I do this every year, and usually make a big batch of jam then freeze the leftover berries, perfect for crumbles and cheesecakes through the winter months. And I did well. I took four containers with me, which I thought was a bit optimistic, but honestly, I could have filled a couple more. The berries were huge, hanging in clusters almost like grapes and falling into my hands. I have the first batch of jam on the go right now, the rest of the berries washed and bagged and into the freezer.

So. This is a bit of a rambling post, but it’s been a bit of a rambling day, wandering the country lanes. I’m away this weekend, then Monday will see me back to work. Looking forward to it!

And what have you been up to? Is it back to school in your world? Or are you simply lamenting the end of summer? Happy weekend, everyone πŸ™‚

22 thoughts on “Of Blackberries and Back To School

  1. Ooh, blackberries! It’s been so dry here, that ours are not ready yet – although I’ll go take a look tomorrow. In Greece schools also start on a Friday – I think so the shock to the system has time to absorb!

    1. Ah that’s interesting – so did the kids go back to school today as well? I hope your blackberries are ready soon, and that you get some rain. We went a few weeks ago and there weren’t many, but today the bushes were overloaded with fruit – it was great!

    1. Yes, that’s it exactly. I wasn’t ready to knuckle down at the desk either – it just didn’t feel like a Friday thing to do. So now I have three jars of jam cooling, and another few pounds of blackberries in the freezer – it was a nice way to spend the day πŸ™‚

  2. Our children started back at school today also, here in SW France, they rather liked that it was a Friday, as you say, one day back and then a weekend! I hate it when they all return to school, Strangely I miss the mess, the chaos, the noise, the endless meals and feeding five children. I miss them all and I wish holidays could go on forever.

  3. Ooh, blackberries! One of my favourites – maybe because that’s one berry we *don’t* really get here (too hot & dry).
    School starts on Tuesday here – the day after Labour Day.

    1. Tuesday’s not so bad – a short week is okay. A lot of the kids here are going back on Monday, so it was interesting to be in the town yesterday and see kids everywhere, even though mine was at school.
      Ooh, and I love blackberries! I did miss them when I lived in Canada, and so I make sure to go picking at least once each season now we’re here. πŸ™‚

      1. It depends on where you are in Canada – in Vancouver (Surrey/Coquitlam), they’re all over the place, wild by the side of the road. And of course in Richmond you get the fattest blueberries. Out here, raspberries are really good. And of course peaches and apples etc etc.

      2. Yes, the Okanagan is fruit heaven, isn’t it? πŸ˜€ I remember being able to get lots of great fruit when I lived in Vancouver. And when we lived in Ontario, we were in farming/Mennonite country, so lots of good fruit (and fruit pies) there πŸ˜€

  4. Glad you had a fab summer – and the blackberries look lovely! This post, like the berries, is very bittersweet. I know what you mean about the summers being different as they grow – this is the first summer I’ve been able to get to proper grips with the garden now the girls are old enough to play together for more than two seconds, and while I’ve enjoyed the projects, it feels as though time is flying away!

  5. I miss blackberriesβ€”they’re everywhere in Tassie, and I wouldn’t have a clue where to find them here in WA! I know the bittersweetness of back-to-schoolβ€”it more freedom in a way, but there’s all that morning routine and consternation. By the way, your gorgeous girl is growing very tall! x

    1. They grew where we lived along the coast in Vic, but not in the profusion they do here – I always missed them when autumn came around, so make the time to pick them here.
      And my girl is tall – I think she’ll be taller than me! (I’m 5’11) Her father is well over 6ft and she takes after him πŸ™‚ Your family look quite tall as well, in the photos I’ve seen.

    1. They are so yummy, aren’t they? I remember them being expensive when I lived in Canada, and I missed being able to go out and pick bucketloads, which is why I always make the effort now we’re back here. Plus, free blackberries! It’s so worth the purple fingers and prickles πŸ™‚

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