Sloe gin a plenty

If the amount of blackthorn flowers is anything to go by, there’ll be plenty of sloes this year. Has anyone ever made sloe gin, I bet Tish has.

The river and mill leat area is my favourite place to walk the dogs at the moment, it’s filled with wild flowers and the sound of birdsong, there the blackthorn is prolific.

Join this weeks photo challenge at the Daily Post.

 

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Great Little Birds

Last Saturday afternoon, I was sitting quietly at home when I heard a distinctive two syllable bird song. I slowly stood up and staying well back from the window I watched as a pair of little birds flew back and forth to the feeder on the olive tree. I knew they’d be off if I made any sudden movements, but when they were out of sight I went to get my camera. They must have seen me spying on them because they stayed further away on John Downie’s budding branches, still coming and going.

I watched for half an hour desperately trying to get a decent photo, several feet inside of the window with unsettled light.

They are of course, Great Tits.
Now, Paula’s Thursday challenge this week is zoom in zoom out. So here’s a closer view of these cute, but also quite stroppy little birds.

Paula zoomed in on a beautiful waterfall in Croatia, ‘stopping’the flow to create a white curtain of water.

Tatty Sunshine

Every year I wait patiently for the first daffodils I see in full bloom, and it’s almost always on the hospital campus that I find them.

If it’s still January when they appear, I’m thrilled to bits, they’re my own little spring watch and make my heart sing. Do you have your own special sign that winter’s loosening it’s hold?

Winter Growth

It’s taken me a while to decide what to post for last Wednesday’s photo challenge, I kept hoping I’d have an idea of something that wasn’t predictable. Now I’m fast running out of time and nothing unusual has sprung to mind, so here are my offerings.

These pictures were taken in early February a few years ago, as you know by now, in winter I’m always looking for signs of new growth and spring to arrive. Are you joining the challenge this week?

Happy January

Happy New Year!

So it’s January 1st 2018, the darkest month begins, I’m already longing for spring and today I found it, yes hooray for catkins, hazel ones I believe!

Here’s a little winter tip for you from Mrs Beeton, she suggests that,

‘At this time of year sensible females should examine their paper or muslin bags of seeds for mould, maggots and other such undesirables’

In case you’ve begun the year feeling under the weather, in 1968, The National Federation of Women’s institutes shared an Old Channel Island remedy for coughs,

Collect 20 snails from crevices in walls, half a pound moist brown sugar. Leave snails in a bowl to clean themselves. Remove and place live snails in muslin bag with the sugar. Leave to drip overnight. Bottle liquid and use a tablespoon as required.

Do you think it was meant to be swallowed or rubbed in?

 

 

Thursday Special, park musings

In 1987, when the ‘Great Storm’ ravaged many parts of the UK, lots of great trees were damaged or lost completely in Heavitree Park. This is the park where I grew up, part of my daily walk to school through infant and junior school years, and a place full of memories both good and bad.

My children also played there in the late 80’s, and we walked Jassy, the family dog, a golden get-it-yourself. Over time, new trees were planted, some of which are now fully grown. Grandchildren have played there, Dido and Daisy walked there for 13 years, and now it’s Flora and George’s turn.

Time passes, fall arrives every year bringing short days and damp weather. In the park several more trees have fallen over the years and have been given a new lease of life. Like this meeting bench standing near the skate park, it’s somewhere for the kids to hang out, make and break friendships and generally do what teens do, each one imagining they’re different from the generation before.

This is my post for Paula’s Thursday Special, ‘Fall’. You can join in, there’s always a warm welcome!