Wren’s Nest

View from Wren’s Nest

The Easter weekend coincided with John’s birthday this year, so as a gift I booked a short break in Dumfries and Galloway. Our accommodation, Wren’s Nest, was bijou (read tiny), a former farm building converted into a one-room cottage, but it was perfect for our needs. (There’s also a larger cottage, sleeping four, on site.) The owner, Janet, lived next door in the farmhouse and was an absolutely lovely person, so helpful. Not only that, she provided champagne for our first night! Apparently, we were the first people ever to stay in Wren’s Nest so this was a lovely way of marking that. (Both cottages can be booked via holidaycottages.co.uk).

The nearest town of any size was Newton Stewart and we stopped here for a look around on our way down to the cottage. Despite the dreich* weather we took a circular walk between two bridges over the River Cree.

Fortunately, the next day dawned brighter and we set off to celebrate John’s birthday on the Isle of Whithorn.

* Dreich (Urban Dictionary definition) – A combination of dull, overcast, drizzly, cold, misty and miserable weather. At least 4 of the above adjectives must apply before the weather is truly dreich.

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63 thoughts on “Wren’s Nest

  1. hilarymb June 26, 2017 / 10:56

    Hi Anabel – what a delightful break and that added extra the surprise champagne – mind you Janet must have been so happy to have her first visitors … wonderful to read and to see the photos … Lovely part of the world- that looks good to tour around … looking forward to seeing more – cheers Hilary

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh June 26, 2017 / 11:55

      Thanks Hilary, we were really lucky to find such a great place.

      Like

  2. goannasnake June 26, 2017 / 10:57

    This sounds like our sort of place. And I always say that you can’t change the weather so you either do what you want to do or you do something else. Lovely post. Thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

    • maristravels June 26, 2017 / 11:21

      I echo the above sentiments. I’m also pleased to add a new word to my personal dictionary, dreich. I have heard this before somewhere, is it used in Scotland as a general rule? I vicariously enjoyed the champagne with you as I would have it daily if I could afford it. Many years ago I had a bad time after a blood transfusion and the consultant asked my husband if he could bring me a glass (or two) of champagne every evening. He said that would help me recover more quickly than any drug he could prescribe for me. If not champagne, then a good dry sherry. I’ll drink to that!

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      • Anabel Marsh June 26, 2017 / 12:02

        Sounds like my sort of cure! Yes, dreich is quite commonly used, probably because we get that weather a lot.

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    • Anabel Marsh June 26, 2017 / 11:55

      Exactly! If we didn’t take that attitude in Scotland, we’d never go anywhere.

      Like

  3. catbird in japan June 26, 2017 / 11:20

    I like staying in cozy little cottages while traveling. Interesting word: Dreich. I hope I remember to use it in similar circumstances. I hope John enjoyed his birthday. 🙂

    Like

  4. edgar62 June 26, 2017 / 11:21

    Lovely photographs. Never been to Newton Stewart. Actually the only Newton of any note that I have been to was Newton Mearns and only because I was sent to Mearnskirk Hospital – which is probably long gone. We have had no rain for a good while and we need some – any chance of sending some over this way?? :o)

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    • Anabel Marsh June 26, 2017 / 12:01

      Had to check that out! The hospital was replaced by housing some time ago, as you suspected, but the name lives on in Mearnskirk House, a purpose built NHS facility for the elderly. At the moment, we have no rain – so maybe it’s on its way to you?

      Like

  5. Pit June 26, 2017 / 13:10

    Hi Anabel,
    Now that does look like a lovely little retreat. I’m glad you enjoyed it there,
    Have a wonderful week,
    Pit

    Like

  6. helenmackinven June 26, 2017 / 13:35

    I’ve never been to Newton Stewart but would definitely like to visit and stay in that cute wee cottage! Happy birthday to your hubby – sounds an ideal way to celebrate. 🙂

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh June 26, 2017 / 13:55

      It was a lovely weekend. Not sure I’d stay a week in such a tiny space, but for three nights it was perfect.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Donna June 26, 2017 / 14:38

    Happy Birthday to John! I loved the photos…and my continued Scottish lessons!

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh June 26, 2017 / 14:58

      Thanks Donna – I’ll have you all fluent before long!

      Like

  8. claudiabookwright June 26, 2017 / 15:18

    I love your posts. I always open Google Map to see where you were. Of course “Wren’s Nest” hooked me right away. Like your host, our House Wrens can make comfortable homes anywhere. I’ve had friends who always had wreaths on their front door — perfect for a Wren’s nest. Hanging baskets of flowers? Of course. We even had one little Wren determined to make her nest in one of my bird feeders. She scooped out the birdseed to make a nest possible. Unfortunately, the opening in the feeder was too small even for her.

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    • Anabel Marsh June 26, 2017 / 16:59

      Thank you, Claudia! You have some determined wrens – fortunately our nest was metaphorical and we didn’t have to share with any birds!

      Like

  9. Retirementallychallenged.com June 26, 2017 / 15:18

    What a great word! Hopefully I can remember it all the way to next winter when we always get a bit of dreich (it’s not always sunny and warm in Southern California 😄). Happy belated birthday to John!

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh June 26, 2017 / 17:00

      Thanks Janis – I’m sure dreich will feature in my posts regularly so you won’t be able to miss it!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Amy P June 26, 2017 / 16:54

    Even with the dreich, it all looks quite inviting (and I adore champagne)! Thanks for taking us along!

    Like

  11. darwinontherocks June 26, 2017 / 16:59

    What a lovely attention from your host! The weather didn’t seem very cooperative! The word dreich is quite interesting, in Belgium we have also a similar word for this : drache 🙂

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  12. Heyjude June 26, 2017 / 17:57

    That certainly is a tiny space – we often stay in smallish places, but always with a separate bedroom. I guess a couple of nights is OK and you always go out during the day anyway. If you head that way again I know of a lovely house in Kirkudbright, back on the holiday rental market and not expensive either. I look forward to seeing the Isle of Whithorn as we didn’t manage that bit. I imagine you went to Wigtown 😀

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh June 26, 2017 / 18:12

      We sure did! It will pop up eventually, as will Glenwhan Gardens which I first heard of on your blog. The weekend was booked at short notice and being Easter I took what I could get! As you say, we were out most of the time anyway, though it was unfortunate that the village pub had closed so we had nowhere to eat out at night which we would have done at least once.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Jemima Pett June 26, 2017 / 22:22

    I must add Wren Cottage to possibles for a holiday with the boys… the last stretch from the Border up to Mull is getting too much for me. But I’d better put in a word for Treshnish and Haunn Farm Cottages in case your readers are intrigued. 🙂

    Like

  14. Bespoke Traveler June 26, 2017 / 22:40

    Love the new word I’ve learnt (dreich) and that stunning spot of red in all the greenery.

    Like

  15. Birgit June 26, 2017 / 23:43

    The cottage looks so pretty, clean and cozy. It looks like a pretty nice town and one can easily explore. Dreich reminds me of Dreck in German which means awful, horrible…along those lines.

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh June 27, 2017 / 00:00

      Someone above commented that they have a similar word in Belgium – presumably all have evolved from the same origin.

      Like

  16. Liesbet June 27, 2017 / 06:01

    I don’t know the Belgian (Flemish?) word drache, but I did think about the usual Belgian weather when you explained the word dreich. Luckily, this spring, the weather was fantastic during our visit!

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh June 27, 2017 / 07:22

      I guess, like Scotland, sometimes you get lucky. When we spent a week in Bruges a few years ago we for glorious weather – in March!

      Liked by 1 person

  17. restlessjo June 27, 2017 / 07:24

    Too late to wish John Happy Birthday, or shall I be very early for next year? 🙂 🙂 I remember a bit of a nonchalant stroll around Newton Stewart, a long while ago. Sunnier, but we didn’t stay long.

    Like

  18. Coral Waight June 27, 2017 / 08:50

    Must remember that: Dreich. Could apply at the moment to Melbourne.

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    • Anabel Marsh June 27, 2017 / 09:04

      Here too! In fact, it’s a lot more than dreich at the moment. Typical Scottish summer…….

      Like

  19. Green Global Trek June 27, 2017 / 09:53

    “Dreich” a new word to me. But it does a great job of describing that particular type of weather. Good thing you didn’t mind it too much and still got to enjoy. What a charming little village to explore.

    Peta

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh June 27, 2017 / 10:19

      Thanks, Peta – as I’ve commented above, if we waited for the sun in Scotland we’d hardly ever go anywhere!

      Like

  20. Ellen @ The Cynical Sailor June 27, 2017 / 13:21

    I’ve always loved that word “dreich.” Unfortunately, you can generally find at least four of those adjectives that apply to the weather in Scotland 🙂

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh June 27, 2017 / 16:12

      It was – though glad we didn’t get too wet as drying soaking wet clothes would have been tricky.

      Liked by 1 person

  21. BeckyB June 28, 2017 / 07:17

    The Scots have proper rain and proper words for rain unlike us soft southerners!!

    Not been to Dumfries & Galloway since my teens….such happy memories as it is where I saw my first wild otter 😀

    Like

      • BeckyB June 28, 2017 / 07:36

        I’ve been very fortunate on country walks….but to see one once is special so enjoy that memory 😊

        Liked by 1 person

  22. Candia June 29, 2017 / 22:17

    I always like the intensifier ‘gey’ as in ‘gey dreich!’

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  23. Su Leslie June 30, 2017 / 07:40

    What a gorgeous wee cottage. I’m glad you enjoyed your stay, despite the weather.

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh June 30, 2017 / 08:56

      We did enjoy it: we just have to be accepting of the weather and get on with it as I’m sure you’ve experienced!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Su Leslie July 1, 2017 / 02:17

        Absolutely. NZ is pretty much a warmer version of Scotland in that respect. As our (albeit weird) weatherman said on TV last night “by the end of the week you’ll all be on first name terms with your raincoat.” Go figure!

        Liked by 1 person

  24. Marcia Strykowski July 2, 2017 / 14:18

    Looks like an interesting place to visit. I love the way the flowering bush and your jacket pop with color in the midst!

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh July 2, 2017 / 15:04

      Yes, I liked that! Everything was a bit grey otherwise.

      Like

  25. jazzfeathers July 13, 2017 / 08:18

    LOL! Maybe I’m funny, but I kind of like dreich weather 🙂
    The place looks lovely.

    Like

    • Anabel Marsh July 13, 2017 / 14:20

      I appreciate it more when I return home after being somewhere sunny!

      Like

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