on the October table


I am documenting the year with monthly photographs of my kitchen table. Capturing the jumble that accumulates here, at the heart of the kitchen, is also a way to record some of the domestic stories of our family life.

Outside the kitchen window, the mornings are misty up on the distant hill. The days grow ever shorter and the nights grow ever cooler. Here on the table are gathered a collection of autumnal pleasures. It may be a cliche, but the natural element on the October table is not the usual flowers, but emphatically seasonal pumpkins, or squash, to be precise. These two beauties arrived in our weekly vegetable box, which is delivered from the local farm. I do love to cook with squash (squash risotto, squash and sage pesto and roasted squash and tomato soup are all favourites that spring to mind). In the short term, however, I cannot resist their chalky colours and decorative charms. These grace the table, whilst another sits on the mantelpiece with last year’s needle-felted pumpkins. Inevitably, at least one of them will wind up in a batch of Spiced Pumpkin Cupcakes– a seasonal must in this house!

On these darkening days, a candle is always a comfort. At this time of year, I rediscover my love of scented candles, particularly those with festive flavours. I shall also be making a batch of my pinecone firelighters, which add spicy, peppery, fruity notes to the woodsmoke aroma of our open fire.

After the ritual of my morning coffee, I drink cup after cup of tea throughout the day, particularly when I am at home. This little cup I recently re-discovered at the back of a cupboard. I gave it to my  husband for his birthday fifteen years ago, shortly before we became a couple. At the time, he lived in a shared flat, and the cups of tea that he made for me came in a succession of rather suspect mugs, which was something of a joke between us. Sitting now, at our kitchen table in the home which we share with three sons, warming my hands on that same little cup, those intervening fifteen years seem both an eternity and a heartbeat.

Once again, my knitting has found its way onto the table. The yarn that I shared last month has been wound into a ball and, coupled with a skein of teal, it is on its way to becoming a soft and chunky cowl, to warm my neck on the winter days that are fast approaching. Next up on the needles is a cowl for my Mister, of which more is to come. Whilst I knit throughout the year, during the autumn and winter months, my thoughts constantly turn to my current project, and my fingers itch to pick it up and knit just one more row…

Finally, a magazine to curl up with and enjoy. I love elegant lifestyle magazines, taking huge pleasure in turning their thick, crisp pages. Oh Comely is a particular favourite, and one for which I happily have a current subscription. A moment’s pause, in a mercilessly chaotic week, to sip my tea, read a few pages and perhaps knit a row or two? The stuff of sweet October dreams.

Teal, green and yellow : the October table.

The kitchen story so far:

{the January table}

{the February table}

{the March table}

{the April table}

{the May table}

{the June table}

{the July table}

{the August table}

{the September table}

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