Today have been the birthday of Edward Thomas. With the state of the UK weather it seems appropriate to remember him through one of his poems.
Over the land freckled with snow half-thawed
The speculating rooks at their nests cawed
And saw from elm-tops, delicate as flower of grass,
What we below could not see, Winter pass.
Yesterday was the first day of the half term holiday for me. I took Alice out for a good walk and could really see the change in the seasons starting to happen. Through the park patches of snowdrops are starting to flower.
It was nice going through the park. It’s starting to warm up. More dog walkers were out, a couple of families out, and some kids climbing in a thicket of trees and bushes, using it as their hidey hole.
I took the long route round which takes me past one of several blue plaques in Hornsea. This one on the white cottage is dedicated to TE Lawrence. I like to think he enjoyed his time in Hornsea and found some peace.
Within my own garden the daffodils closest the house and warmth are looking set to flower. The ones down at the bottom of the garden have a little longer to go.
Throughout our walk Alice was chatting happily. Any other baby would of drifted off for their afternoon nap, but not Alice. She sat in the pram chatting and giggling the whole journey. You would have thought the sound of the sea, the rolling of the pram would make her droop off, but no happy as Larry. Thought she’d be grumpy til bed time with over tiredness but she was alright.
The Wildlife Trust has put out a super little PDF on winter activities.
My Wild Winter
It has some good ideas on ways to stay wild during these chilly months.
Included are ideas on:
- Making bird feeders.
- Making a snow globe.
- Discovering animal tracks.
- Making a Winter bird bath.
- making ice decorations.
Each are nice activities for a few hours on a weekend or Spring holiday to fight the boredom and still get outside.
There are some challenges to do in the snow such as making snow animals. Suggestions include making a snow hedgehog using sticks for spines. It would make a nice change from a snowman and won’t take anywhere near as long! It also lists wildlife and winter events to look out for.
The activities are largely family/young children orientated, but it’s free so you’re not going to lose anything (beyond a few minutes of time) by looking.
We returned to the mere for the first time in a few months. With the cafe closed for the winter granddad has lost interest in taking Alice here.
On previous visits we’ve been past the field on the way in and watched the sheep, but it seems they’ve been relocated to further round the mere. The field was however full of one of my favourite collective nouns; a murder of crows.
Several crows and magpies were scavenging over the fields along with a few pied wagtails pretending to be part of the crow family.
Alice seemed happy to be returning to the mere.
Having just finished crow country I’m still finding myself keeping track of crows on our walks.
A group elegantly silhouetted in the trees on the approach to the mere.
The mere itself had a fine layer of mist layered around the edges giving it something of an Arthurian Avalon feel with the Lady of the Lake ready to leap out and startle the bird watching group.
The bird watchers had come fully kitted with large telescopes. As far as I could tell they were watching the same ducks and swans that were swimming up to the shore, but maybe they could see something more exciting than my little binoculars. I suppose if you’ve brought big kit you’ve got to use it.
The gulls and ducks were swarming round the other side as several people fed them.
We left the mere to go back home by the railway track. Alice decided nothing of any more interest was going to happen and went to sleep.
The track is looking pretty lifeless currently. Just a few gulls returning to sea.
A pretty grim day at the seafront with the sky and sea merging seamlessly into an endless wall of grey. The boundaries between sea and sky had disappeared.
I made a start on Richard Fortey-the wood from the trees. After leaving the Natural History Museum he bought a section of woodland. In this book he chronicles the wood in the style of a museum of curiosities. Should be interesting.
Today is a day for indulging in the traditional Zen activity of creating haiku’s. With Alice not sleeping well my daily acts of meditation help a little towards my alertness and calm. A quick little poem following the traditional haiku subject of the seasons.
Autumn leaves falling,
Drifting down to the wet ground,
Crunching under foot.
I have managed to get Alice down in her cot. A rare event during the day. We’ll see how long this lasts.
And on the subject of seasons the Wildlife Trusts anthology on Summer is on offer on kindle at the moment.
From the blurb:
Capturing the high point of the year’s progress, Summer presents prose and poetry spanning eight hundred years. Featuring new contributions by Simon Barnes, Michael McCarthy and Esther Woolfson, classic extracts from the work of Charles Dickens, Mary Webb and Philip Larkin, and diverse new nature writing from across the UK, this vibrant and evocative collection will inspire you to go out and enjoy the pleasures of summer.
Summer anthology-Mellisa Harrison (Ed.)