Setting a calming scene for the next stint..
..of JGID. (Lost a bit of momentum and one week was a bit optimistic.)
Setting a calming scene for the next stint..
I have tried, and failed, to get a good photograph of the swallows' nest so will link you to this fabulous one.
But perhaps you have your own nest to distract you? I keep thinking they will surely leave today but this morning all six are still in there being fed by what must now be pretty exhausted parents. I think it is too cold. I would stay in a cosy nest with my siblings too....
Talking of good parenting, over those few hot days last week I was almost certain that the swallows had abandoned their nest and their four young! After a flurry of activity when the babies first appeared over the rim of the nest above the studio window all went quiet and the adults were hardly to be seen. Last year the baby birds failed to fledge and it looked like the same thing was happening again. I had moved the table and chairs to another part of the garden in case my presence there was disturbing them.
I was so relieved and delighted this morning to see all four - looking suddenly much bigger and very healthy being fed, and sitting on the edge of the nest stretching their wings. It made my day and I didn't mind that the weather is misty and cloudy if it meant that there were now plenty of midgies for the swallows!
There are wrens nesting in the clematis above the study window, and I think I see a few young robins hopping about.
It feels like a privilege to have wild creatures so close.
Summer. I have decided, is my favourite season.
I like the light nights. This was taken at 11pm last night.
Breakfast outside iwth a little bunch of buttercups from my own tiny meadow (gives me a thrill!).
A cold paddle instead of a cold shower this morning.
I think I relax more in summer than in any other season.
Which is your favourite season?
Whichever one you are in, have a lovely weekend.
I write this on a wet, rather chilly morning in the west of Scotland. I was supposed to get the grass cut today....it's not going to happen!
British summers are notoriously fickle weatherwise, but I am still inspired to Design My Summer a lovely idea from (a very fast talking) Gretchen Rubin in this video.
I will have a think about what I love best about summer and look over some June/July/August posts to remind me. I know I want picnics and a family Midsummer Barbecue but in this climate there has to be a Plan B for such events. I want a few outings, I want to wear some summery clothes, and to nap in the hammock
I want to pay extra attention this summer to the wildlife in the garden. There have been more butterflies than usual so far, and the swallows are in the nest, and I think bees may be nesting in the wall just by the front door....and a red squirrel passes through occasionally on its way to next door's bird table.
I'm happy to holiday at home - if the weather is good there's nowhere else I'd rather be.
What do you want from your summer?
We also used the back garden as a drying greeen...
We planted a few birch trees. They were meant to be the white-barked 'Jaquemontii' but turned out to be the faster growing and taller native birch - however this did mean that they soon became strong enough to support what turned out to be my favourite thing in the garden - the hammock!
I watched a robin take a long bath in this shallow dish of water this morning. As well as bathing in it, birds drink from it, the swallows need it to make mud for their nests, it brings the sky down into the garden and reflects things in it. You can also tell at a glance if it's raining. It's an important addition to any garden however small. (I am scarifying the grass - it always looks worse before it looks better!)
When I am trying to make a decision I still find What would be simplest? my favourite helpful question but here is a good one from Gretchen Rubin -
What is the value of what I'm going to get if I...........?
Best china and linen napkin, good food and wine, real coffee, chocolates, a card of two marvellous women and a good book.
I am reading my way through all the novels by William Maxwell. This one is So Long, See You Tomorrow.
Have you been on a special date lately?
Or read a particulary good book?
..one of these trees hit the forest floor the huge CRUMP reverberated through the house.
The larch trees, some infected by phytophthora, have been felled in the last couple of weeks. They are opposite the house and it is quite a shock to see them gone from the skyline as they were 80 - 100 feet tall and I really liked them, as did the crows, red squirrels and siskins.
I'm really glad that there are a number of deciduous trees between the house and this area of the forest - beech, willow, sycamore, horse chestmut and holly screen me from the scene! More felling is planned. It is commercial forest...
We'll probably get more bluebells.
..flowers for cutting is one of my greatest pleasures. Having a garden just big enough to be able to pick from it without leaving a great gap is a joy. Currently I have daffodil Thalia, tulip Purissima, forget me nots and blue camassias and I've had several small arrangements without spoiling the effect in the garden.
I happened to move a small lamp and find the way it lights the flowers is quite dramatic...
..now and then.
Although I trained in Printed Textiles at Glasgow School of Art, in my home I like plain and simple, and pattern only on things which are brought out occasionally..and usually one at a time. William Morris, Arts and Crafts, the Bloomsbury set and Liberty? I love to visit these kinds of interiors but would not want to live in them. (Too much visual stimulus! I would find it exhausting.)
Opening all the windows in the morning makes me feel more alive.
If it's cold or wet it may just be for a few moments.
On really hot summer days (we do get them occasionally!) the doors may stay open too.
I love that.
(Taking photographs for the blog makes me feel alive!)
What makes you feel alive in the morning?