Time for collecting up the paint sample pots and fabric swatches always seems to fall between the search for perfect mothering sunday gifts and the search for the best value easter eggs. This time of year is so invigorating and life affirming. We have just sat through a seriously grim January and February, then thinking the worst of the weather had departed, we got hit below the belt with the coldest snap in half a century and real snow. There haven’t been as many reports of serious flooding this winter though. That has been one of the drawbacks to snow filled fun and frolics in the last few years – very bad for much of the south west coast and scotland. The dire warnings about not enough drainage sluices and flood plains being built on have finally got through to those who need to know. They have done their best and we can relax for another year or two.