Saturday 27 February 2021

Spring Is on the Way

The last week has seen a gradual rise in temperatures here. The ice and frost covered earth has once again been replaced by mud and puddles - thank goodness for my wellies - and even I felt a little too warm wrapped up on our walk yesterday. The seasons are shifting and there is more than a hint of spring in the air. Earlier this week I was woken by birdsong. The glorious dawn chorus. It must have been around 6.15am and it was loud! And so, for the first time this year, I stood at the door and just listened for a while.

I've yet to spend any time in the garden, although it's going to need to happen soon, as I'm looking forward to sitting out there with a mug of tea in the next few weeks. The soil needs turning, the stone flags need cleaning and it looks a sorry mess, as it usually does at this time of year. Winter has lain heavy on the ground and although there are new shoots beginning to appear, the garden hasn't sprung to life just yet, much like myself  :)  On a positive note, however, there is now a new shed in place and this one is not going to collapse any time soon.

My plan is to not grow any vegetables this year, I'm going with flowers instead. I know I could make more effort and do both but the garden isn't really big enough and, to be honest, I just fancy a change. Just like vegetable growing, with my limited knowledge I will be making it up as I go along, so any advice is more than welcome. I would love to see the garden full of colour.

With the gradual relaxing of restrictions I am looking forward to being able to travel farther afield, and I've been making plans of places to visit as soon as we are able, although I can't complain. Staying local has really opened my eyes to what is on my doorstep and I'm sure we'll be spending just as much time at the river again this summer.

J. X

Tuesday 16 February 2021



As I noted in my last post, life here trundles on much the same, week after week, with the exception being that we are now on our half term break - yay! This has meant we can put all notions of home learning aside, for this week, at least, and I can't stress just what a relief that is. I have felt under much more pressure this time round, so I can only imagine it feels far worse for Lily, especially being away from her friends and the reassuring routine of the school day. 

Thankfully, despite the bitterly cold temperatures we've been experiencing, another difference is the noticeable brightening and lengthening of the days, a clear indication spring is on the way. That, and we discovered some early bright green shoots of wild garlic pushing through the frozen earth last week. It's hard to think that in just a few weeks time we will be walking there in the warm sunshine to gather some for making pesto.

As it's been so cold, I've made sure to keep the bird feeder well topped up. Since the beginning of the year we have been fortunate to have many birds returning to the garden. For ages, it seemed, we didn't get any feathered visitors, which was really disappointing. I wasn't sure if it was down to our garden receiving little in the way of sunshine at this time of year, so I eventually stopped putting any food out at all. In a determined effort to encourage more of our feathered friends I once again began putting out a variety of nuts and seeds and have since been rewarded with a steady stream of blackbirds, blue tits, and robins. Although, I must admit they have been a bit of a distraction from our home learning, with both mother and daughter having the same tendency to gaze longingly out of a window, rather than getting on with the task in hand :) 

Even though I've still been working, we've taken every opportunity to get outdoors when the weather has allowed. These daily walks, although becoming a little repetitive, are necessary to my wellbeing. I know I've said this before but if you look closely there is always something new to see as the seasons change and nature does her thing. I hadn't, however, prepared myself for the sight of this stunning display of icicles down by the river. We were amazed. So much, in fact, Lily insisted we went back the following day for another look. 

J. X