March: hot cross buns & the end of winter

I’m so pleased that this new monthly segment has started in March (yes, it would’ve made much more sense to start in January, but sadly good ideas aren’t always convenient or timely!).

March, for me, marks a new beginning: we’ve struggled through the dark evenings and freezing temperatures proffered by January and February; we’ve fretted over our empty post-Christmas bank accounts and lusted over extravagant foreign holidays during work hours, but as we head into March things start to seem a bit more manageable. The cold no longer bites with such ferocity*, the dark evenings take on a slightly lighter hue, even our bank balances are beginning to look a little healthier. Those extravagant foreign holidays may still be completely unaffordable, but Easter is just around the corner and a couple of bank holidays are enough to break up the working week.

By the time we get to the first day of spring I have usually awoken from my own self-imposed hibernation (not a physical hibernation you understand, that would be completely impractical, but a sort of mental hibernation brought about by many of the winter-related obstacles mentioned above and a general unwillingness to do anything even vaguely creative before it’s absolutely necessary). Like nature – or perhaps inspired by nature – my creative mind seems to regenerate during spring and subsequently I am motivated by the endless possibilities and opportunities that the season can offer (many of which are not acted upon…I’m more of a daydreamer, less a go-getter!).

This year, March gives us much to be inspired by and I’m hoping that I can tackle a few of these topics on Bellyful of Art over the coming month. Easter (which straddles March/April this year) always fills me with cosy nostalgia. The hot cross buns and the usual chocolate-related over-indulgence are one part of it (admittedly a rather large part), but the dedicated family time is what I’m reminded of most when I think of Easters gone by. Don’t expect inspired recipes on how to make the best hot cross buns here – I’m a useless cook – but hopefully I’ll be able to incorporate an Easter-themed post over the next couple of months.

In February we celebrated the centenary of the right to vote for some women over thirty, but sadly in 2018 women continue to struggle for gender parity. March 8th marks International Women’s Day and this certainly deserves a mention on Bellyful of Art – expect a post this time next week. For more information on International Women’s Day and this year’s campaign theme #PressforProgress head over to the website.

A couple of other notable dates in my diary this month include Mother’s Day on March 11th (a very personal one for me this year as I celebrate my first as a mother) and the release of the new Wes Anderson film Isle of Dogs on the 30th. In my opinion, Anderson is a director like no other and anyone who’s seen Fantastic Mr Fox, Moonrise Kingdom or The Grand Budapest Hotel will understand why his unique style is so watchable. In honour of this highly anticipated new release, I’m planning to post my first film review since 2015 (an honour indeed!) and I’m also hoping to document my first ever solo cinema outing. Let me know if you’ve ever tried solo cinema-ing! What are the advantages/disadvantages of going to the cinema alone? I’m particularly looking forward to having an entire carton of popcorn to myself (half sweet, half salted for those who are interested!).

So that’s it, March 2018 in a nutshell. Winter may not have left us yet, but there’s still plenty to keep our minds occupied until the warmer weather arrives. Until then, enjoy World Book Day and, as always, thanks for reading!

*I started writing this piece before Storm Emma and ‘The Beast from the East’ descended so if you’re surrounded by snow and freezing your socks off (as I am) then please feel free to ignore this entire paragraph and scoff at my lack of foresight!


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