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Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Sunshine & Nature

I have been reading about the health benefits of sunshine on the wonderful Wellness Mama blog .  Apparently vitamin D is the new Prozac! 

Secretly, I have always known this. In Winter I wish I could hibernate like the Blue Peter tortoise. I hate the dark days and permeating, invasive gloom. Come Spring I open up like a daisy in the dawn light and feel reborn. My other half says I am like a different person, he describes my personality as “grey” in Winter, and “yellow and orange” when the days become brighter!

Recently, in order to recharge myself, I’ve been volunteering to do duty outside at break and lunchtimes at school, and of course walking Poppy in the afternoons. We are lucky to have our own little garden at school, complete with miniature woodland and I’m getting outside as much as I can. So many days this Winter I have been cocooned inside my office or classroom, hermetically sealed off from the natural world, artificially heated and illuminated. Outside today I could feel my sunshine levels topping up like the battery bar on my phone. I'm wondering if it has such a strong restorative effect on other people, or is it just me?

We took Poppy to her first puppy training class this evening, and unwittingly took the scenic route home. It’s really surprising how wonderful taking a different and unexpected route home can feel – like a mini adventure! We meandered past golden fields of oilseed rape and lush hedgerows speckled with stray bluebells. The sun shone gloriously – I was perfectly content being lost and was rather disappointed when we turned out onto the dreary dual carriageway.

I love seeing and being in nature. It’s so restful. I sometimes divert en route to school via Port Solent so that I can stand by the sea and gaze out to Portchester castle and beyond. I smell the brine and seaweed and feel the breeze on my skin. It’s such a stunning view in the morning light; often hazy and slightly eerie when you cannot see the horizon. I drink it in to top up my battery before the madness of school commences. Just for 10 minutes, but it works...

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