Sunday, 28 June 2015

30 Days Wild - Day 24

Every time we set out on our little walk around the village I feel a slight sense of boredom hitting - the same walk, stopping in the same places, seeing the same things, etc.  But that feeling is thankfully always short-lived as in fact things are always different and always changing.  And it's lovely how the company of a 3-year-old helps you to notice this! 

So today, same walk, same places...  but lots of new things to notice and chat about:

Lots of fruit growing at the moment.  Many apple trees around (including in our garden), but also lovely to see these quince.

The difference between nettles and dead-nettles.  It was funny seeing T's amazement at being able to touch a dead-nettle without being stung!

A large tree in the village has been cut down so there was sawdust all over the road - a talking point in itself.  But this was a cobweb covered in sawdust which proved fascinating.

Another chat with the racehorses in the local farmyard.  T gets very excited when he sees them coming across the field to say hello... but then pretty terrified when they get up to the fence.  They are huge beasts, so must seem immense when you are less than a metre tall yourself.

Finally I taught him how to strip grasses of their seeds.  I can't be the only person who spent much of thier childhood doing this?!  I seem to recall a rhyme that went with it (something about a bunch of flowers and 'April showers' upon which you threw the seeds over your unsuspecting friend!).  He really enjoyed this and spent ages working his way along the footpath stripping every grass he could see!

30 Days Wild - Day 23

Wednesdays are busy days for us as T is at Playschool all morning and then I pick him up (by bike if the waether is nice) and we go straight to a playgroup for a couple of hours.  Hence we don't get home until about 4:30pm and he's often exhausted.  He does however spend much of his time at Playschool outside, and this week I spent much of my child-free time sitting in the sunshine writing my birthday thank-you cards, so we both had some nature-time in the morning.

When I picked him up he was hot and needed a drink - perfect time for sampling our newly bottled elderflower cordial!

He loves it, as do we.

After supper he was still remarkably full of energy so we headed out for a walk and discovered this incredible field of poppies only a few minutes from our house.  I don't know how we hadn't noticed it before, but I guess in my defence, we usually walk in the opposite direction!  It's a shame the sky wasn't bluer, but it was still a stunning sight.

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

30 Days Wild - Day 22

My 40th Birthday!  Yes, it's a busy birthday month.

We went out for the day to Mottisfont, a National Trust property not too far away which is famed for its stunning rose garden.  The roses were slightly blown, but still gorgeous; the scents were amazing, especially after the morning of rain.

Lots of large trout in the River Test.  A lot larger than the little ones we see in the Ebble (which runs through our village).

30 Days Wild - Day 21

We went for a lovely walk and picnic lunch at one of our local nature reserves, Martinsdown.  The skylarks were in full voice and the wild flowers blooming, it was a lovely day. 

We took the bike of course, we get so much further - and faster - when we bring it along.  Lots of little hills to climb up and hurtle down too.


We spotted this amazing web just full of caterpillars.  I've looked it up and I think it's some kind of moth.  Incredible, but a little creepy too ("Yucky!" exclaimed Ted!).

30 Days Wild - Day 20

Today was my 40th birthday party so we spent the day at home preparing.  Thankfully the weather was dry so we were able to be outside all afternoon. 

Here are some wild flowers (mixed with cultivated ones) that my friend brought along as a birthday present.  I think they are the most beautiful bunch of flowers I have ever received!

Friday, 19 June 2015

30 Days Wild - Day 19

We headed out intending to have another paddle in the river today, but got diverted when we met some friends and went for a cuppa with them instead! 

However, we did manage to make a lovely nature bracelet on our walk.  I rightly predicted that T wouldn't tolerate sellotape being wrapped around his wrist, so I did it on mine instead.  He loved collecting things to stick on it, and it provided a nice opportunity to look closely in the hedgerows and around our feet as we walked. 

I thought the result was actually very attractive! 

Luckily the tiny caterpillar that we found whilst picking a flower managed to escape being stuck onto the sellotape as well! 

Lots of fledging birds at the moment which is exciting to see.  This morning on the way back from playgroup we saw a crow that had clearly just left the nest.  He wasn't terribly good at flying as yet so was hopping along rather erratically, not helped by the fact that he was being followed by an enthusiastic 3 year old!  The crow's mother was flying above, squawking at him, so I removed the small child and let the baby crow hop into a flowerbed under the cover of lots of plants.   This afternoon we spotted some baby partridge hopping around on a footpath.  They disappeared quickly into the undergrowth, but it was lovely to see them.

30 Days Wild - Day 17

Collecting elderflowers to make cordial.

Ted was very keen to do the snipping...  so I had to watch my fingers!