A Winter Wonderland, Stones and a Monster

winter wonderland

A beautiful winter wonderland. Sparkling. Fresh. Perfect.

And then there’s the monster. Me. Again. Yes, I have succumbed to some of my old monstrous ways. But it’s not as bad as before. I’m not in hospital this time. I’m in a winter wonderland!

trees fall in a winter wonderland

Storm Arwen pulled down some of our old pines and left us with no electricity for a couple of days. But we were cosy and well fed. We played board games and stoked the fire. We listened to audio books in the dark till the iPad ran out of power.

Before that, when I could feel the beginnings of monstrosity happening, I ran round doing things I knew I might not be able to do for long. I bought festive food in the shops. I visited Berrybrae Stone Circle.

The trees around the circle looked dark and forbidding.

trees at Berrybrae

I found it hard to climb up onto the wee wall around it with my gammy leg. But I made it…

Berrybrae Stone Circle

It was still autumnal then. Unlike now.

autumn at Berrybrae Recumbent Stone Circle

The Historical Novel Society published a very nice review of FIREFLIES AND CHOCOLATE here which cheered me up.


Like Elizabeth wrapped in a plaid, savor the pages of Fireflies and Chocolate and wait for that “bonny” feeling, “I’ve come home.”

Dorothy, the reviewer, also put the review up on her website here with some lovely Scottish photos.

So, for now, I’m content to read blogs and reviews and take short hobbles through the beautiful snow, feeling glad to be able to return to electricity and the cosy fire… and maybe even a bit of writing.

pink bench in a winter wonderland

Aberdeen’s 1597 witchcraft panic (mermaid) and 18th century kidnappings (fireflies) combine with love and hope in THE MERMAID AND THE BEAR & FIREFLIES AND CHOCOLATE. Christmas features in both books !

Amazon UK

Amazon Worldwide


books by Ailish Sinclair

41 Replies to “A Winter Wonderland, Stones and a Monster”

  1. Beautiful. Are you able to use your writer’s cottage in this weather? I love looking at snow and since I’ve reached a certain age, I am much less enthused about dealing with it. Hope you feel better soon, at least before the holidays.

      1. Sorry I confused you with another blogger. Her husband made it for her. As close as we get, is riding around the countryside looking at small buildings that we will never own that could be my imaginary writer’s cottage.

  2. I am very envious, Ailish – not of your gamey leg, of course, which I hope improves with all your walking – but of the snow. We never get any here. We used to, but not much in the last decade. It’s so peaceful!

  3. A fresh snowfall is so very beautiful especially when the trees are covered in frost, but I do not miss the slippery driving conditions and the cold that makes your face hurt.

  4. Keep well Ailish. I was hoping to get home to Aberdeen at the weekend but the weather scuppered me. Our body’s need winter to recharge, hopefully you’ll get some of that and more beautiful snowy scenes outside!

  5. Sorry to hear of ailments returning, but so glad to hear you’re not in hospital. How lovely to have snow. We’ve lost many trees in the storms this season and had a few power outages. I enjoy the quiet time – much as you did – and woodstove and food from the gas grill. A nice change of pace.
    So glad you had a chance to do a few things and prepare for the holidays. Enjoy the Christmas season! I’m reminded that I bought Fireflies and Chocolate but haven’t read it yet. I’m going to set it as my holiday day read. What fun! I’ll review it when I’m done. 🙂

  6. Healing has already started, and each day you will feel better, especially being in familiar surroundings. Some traditional food like Granny’s Scotch Broth will help, that is, if your electricity is back on full-time! Stay safe

  7. I’m going to treat myself to your two books for Christmas. Looking forward to settling down by the fire here in Skye to read them.

  8. Hard to walk through life with a monster on one’s shoulder, that just comes out to fight when/how it wants to – but then, to me? Sometimes….I often wonder what all i would have missed understanding, or seeing, or experiencing, had the monster not showed up to slow down my pace – – blessing and curse, to me, all at the same time – – hope you soon fell in the form you prefer!

  9. Those trees are indeed foreboding, but I do so love the look of winter and like you I celebrate that dawn comes at a more reasonable hour. Best wishes.

  10. Ailish, you live the life me and my partner dream of. Our long term goal is to move much farther up north (from the midlands) to your beautiful home-land when we finally start a family. Your story had the ingredients of everything I love – stone circles, snow and Scotland.
    I feel very glad for stumbling across your blog after finally getting back into developing my own and after your gracious follow. I am very excited to discover you, and will certainly be getting my hands on your book!

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