The drying bowl – a large glass chalice that I keep in the bay window to amplify the sunlight – is filled with walnuts now, instead of camomile. I think it might officially be Autumn.

Skinning walnuts is a long and messy procedure. Sadly, the gloves didn't protect as well as expected and I have ended up with black thumbs again.

As the days start to decline, I find increasing that I am turning my attention indoors – to my books, and my plotting for the garden next year. I have been so lucky moving into this house. My neighbours have been fantastic, and though we’ve just lost the couple at the top of the field, the company of  L- in the middle house very much makes up for their absence. I only wish that this magical place was mine.

It isn’t just my books and garden which have caught my attention now the weather is cooling. I find increasingly that I want to create beauty around me, in my home and in some small way, in the world. I love art, and I love drawing. It’s been so long since I have though, that aside from absent doodling I don’t know where to begin. My newfound love of textiles seems to point me in that direction and after months of being unsure what to do with a beautiful obi I bought online, and a stunning scrap of kimono silk, I have decided that I’m simply going to frame them, and enjoy them on a daily basis.

My beautiful stag obi - I will frame each embroidered section separately and give one to Mum. The card is something she bought me whilst we were in Dorset and I think it goes really well. It is by artist Rachel Goodchild.

I actually bought this years ago on Fanø - a Danish island. The lady in the silk shop there sold scraps of kimono that she had used to make other items of clothing and I just fell in love with this.

So whilst I might not be confident enough to create myself – yet – I still feel that I can fill my walls with beautiful items which are personal to me. I have also decided to try some embroidery after my cross-stitch is finished. Autumn always makes me think of the following poem and I’d love a beautiful version of it for the wall, stitched in appropriate colours:

The Autumn of Life

From the Carmina Burana, a collection of songs from the 12th century. Copied from Judith Herrin’s Medieval Miscellany.

While life’s April Blossom blew,
What I willed I then might do,
Lust and Law seemed comrades true.
As I listed, unresisted,
Hither, thither, could I play,
And with my wanton flesh obey.

When life’s autumn days decline,
Thus to live, a libertine,
Fancy-free as thoughts incline,
Manhood’s older age and colder,
Now forbids, removes, destroys
All those ways of wonted joys.

Age with admonition wise
Thus doth council and advise,
While her voice within me cries:
For repenting and relenting
There is room; forgiveness falls
On all contrite prodigals.

I will seek a better mind;
Change, correct, and leave behind
What I did with purpose blind:
From vice sever, with endeavour
Yield my soul to serious things,
Seek the joy that virtue brings.