Learning to play again

Can you remember when you were last really absorbed in a task? When you lost yourself in the pleasure of carrying out one step, and then another?  Worries floated away as you just focused on the job in hand. This is flow. Children generally achieve flow very easily. They will arrange buttons or stones just…

Peach Fuzz

Sssshhhh…  I have to say that very quietly because even the words p-e-a-c-h f-u-z-z give my daughter the icks. This is another installment in my bud fest.  If you want to catch up, here are the previous exciting episodes: Early Birds, The Dawn Chorus and Bursting Buds, The Ugly Duckling Becomes a Beautiful Swan and Cauliflorescence! We have a good…

Verdant

It is May Day today, and in celebration, the sky decided to dress itself in blue.  It goes rather well with the green of lush growth at this time of year. We agreed to say nothing more about the wind and rain yesterday.  Forgive and forget. It’s May! There was a light frost, and I…

The Dawn Chorus and Bursting Buds

A week ago, I wrote a post called ‘Early Birds’ about listening to the dawn chorus.  Well this morning I had the foresight to take my phone with me so that I could record it. Here is an excerpt.  The soloist could be a thrush, given the tendency to repeat the same line two or three times,…

Meadow Update! Seedballs!

So if you remember, I had one of my ideas back in February (always a dangerous time).  For a wildflower meadow.  The digging was quite hard-going, and I got about a square metre in, and decided I only wanted a very little meadow anyway. Well, I planted my plugs.  It snowed.  It snowed again.  But guess…

Early Birds

This morning I woke up with the dawn chorus.  I am naturally an early bird, and at this time of year, I wake at exactly the right time to witness this spring wonder.  I decided to go out into the garden in my dressing gown for ten minutes or so, just so I could listen…

The Greening

Something magical is happening.  Right now, as we speak.  Maybe metres away from where you’re sitting. Can you hear it? I expect it crackles, just a little bit. It is the buds bursting.  One by one by one. In February there were tremulous catkins quivering, palest green and yellow.  It was easy to miss them. …

A Winter Walk

This morning Stevie suggested we go for a walk over the snowy fields before it all melts away. We tracked animal footprints, spotting lots of different-sized birds, rabbits, foxes, possibly a badger, possibly a deer. We admired the partly-frozen river and the undulating snowdrifts along its banks. There were gnarly oaks:. And blue blue sky….

Turn your mardy-bums into lardy-bums!

I am becoming bird-obsessed. I’ve noticed our regular visitors getting a little bit fractious in the extreme arctic conditions.  There have been minor skirmishes through to full-on dive-bomb explosions. Feathers have flown. The blackbirds have been downright peevish, at times sitting on the fat-balls to stop anyone else getting a look-in.  The goldfinches seem to…

Folly alert! The meadow experiment.

I am a very impulsive gardener. I do sit down and make lists and draw plans, but I also have mad moments of ‘inspiration’ as I’m emptying the washing machine, and have to rush to order seeds/plugs/bulbs right now. Stephen is more considered. If I have an idea which requires his cooperation (i.e. it is…

Making the most of the morning commute

I get to drive all over Kent for my job.  Given that much of Kent is pretty stunning, this is no bad thing.  There are sweeping views over fields and chalk downs, winding worm-holes through woodland, coastal roads looking out over the sea, and misty, magical marshes, which used to be under the sea. The other…

Lichen and Moss

I’m quite partial to a spot of lichen or moss. Especially in January. It’s partly because there aren’t many flowers to distract me. And partly because if I’m walking through woodland, most of the colours are rich browns, with the leaf-litter and tree-trunks, and then all of a sudden, you spot a twig in the…