Songbird Survival Trust …

The snow has lost its fluffiness and is now hard & crunchy. Up to 4c this morning, was positively mafting. I would say a third of it had thawed by the end of this afternoon.

Father was a member of the Songbird Survival Trust, I telephoned them the other day to ask if it was possible for his membership to be transferred to me, this they very kindly sorted out and my membership card & pack arrived today, take a look at their site … https://www.songbird-survival.org.uk

Bruce the Cockerel was nae letting me in the coop to feed them this morning, so just managed to throw a handful in and told him that he would have to man up and step outside if he wanted more feed! 48hrs since they’ve left that coop!
Sure enough, 5min later out he stepped, reckon it was for a minute at the most.

Probably listened to every version of the lake isle of innisfree today, still no decision on favourite version.

Got guest room ready for tonights guests, which was a miracle, as I am having to keep check to see which day it is on a morning, am totally out of sync & am running a day behind! Poor nights sleep again, so felt totally crap when getting up, a sob broke out, but only for a minute, chest aches still and couldn’t manage anymore, but maybe I don’t want to? Maybe that would mean accepting things?? Told Dad I just want him back.
Folk ask how I’m doing, I reply with.. okay, but am not. But reckon folk could be going through their own stuff I am not aware of, also, whilst I’m living this nightmare and am alone with thoughts, I realise that it is one we all have to live through at some point in our lives, just different versions, different coping mechanisms etc. Those who have lived through it, will know it’s the worst, those who haven’t, will be like me a few weeks ago, not even be able to comprehend what a wrench it is, nor will you ever be ready for it when it does come.

 

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Chaffinch at the Gate

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Long-tailed tit

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Blackbird

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Starling

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Siskin, Chaffinch & Goldfinch

 

The Quick Thaw …

Pulled back the curtains this morning, to see a fresh covering of Snow.
The day was off to a good start.
Though was short lived when I realised I had run out of Coffee!!!
Had to make do with Alistair’s Kenco.

Whilst having morning coffee, I noticed about a dozen Siskins in the garden, so they must be about to return, though these soon flitted off.
I don’t think Barclay’s constant barking helped! He was stood at the gate in full voice for a few minutes, but as I write, I still have absolutely no idea what or why.
After I had got Barclay calmed down, I let the Poultry out, fresh snow seems to send the Ducks in to a skittish frame of mind and that was it, they were soon away flying down the glen.
Then Barclays Groomer came to collect him for Spa Day, waved them off only to discover I hadn’t closed the door and there was the tame Sheep in the sunroom chewing me writing desk! Had to lure him out with a Parsnip!

Come lunchtime, the temperature had reached a balmy 4c and the Snow began to thaw quickly and I saw our first Snowdrops & Aconites.
Also, McQuack had returned. I walked down the road in search of the other Duck, but no sign of McDuck anywhere.
Got the yard brushed and then finished prepping for tonights guests.
It was then I saw a flash of something fly by the kitchen window, McDuck had finally returned. So where he had been for the last 4hrs, lord knows.
Told him anymore of that and he’ll be getting his wings clipped!
Ruddy Ducks!!!

Looked across the river to see that a Herd of 8 Fallow (Including 2 young) had appeared, haven’t seen these ones before, so will keep an eye on them. They seemed happy enough for a few hours.

By 3pm, you wouldn’t believe we had had Snow, that was one quick thaw, though pleased to see more is forecast.

Tonights guests have arrived and are here for three days Skiing.
Barclay back from his Spa Day looking and smelling all posh, but of course doubt that will last.
Another Jamie Oliver 5 Ingredients recipe for dinner tonight, okay, but looks nothing like in the book!
Still weary and hoping can get a better nights sleep tonight, thought I had improved some last night, but Alistair has just informed me that I called out for Dad again 😦

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Blanket of Snow

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Sheep chews Desk

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First Snowdrops

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And Aconites

 

 

Transition…

As a few of you will know, my Father passed away on Monday 29th January 2018.
And I have just returned to Scotland after a couple of weeks in Yorkshire.
On the morning of my return home, someone was wishing me well with my travels and on about me having to pick up the pieces on my return home.
Thats the thing, How do you pick up the pieces?
I do not know how to, as one of the main pieces, is now missing and the life I knew before has ceased, but … I do know how to start again.
Lets face it, I have had one or two new starts in life and that is something I can do and adapt to.
Someone had left a kind comment on Facebook and used the word Transition and I personally think that is apt, that is what this is.
Have already began to change a few small things, like routine etc

For some months now, I have been mulling over the idea of doing an online journal, life in the Glens, Guests, Work, etc etc
But wasn’t exactly sure how I was going to go about it and when discussing with a couple of close friends, had even thought about an anonymous journal.
But yesterday it finally came to me and as it often has been throughout my life, that inspiration came from my Father yet again.
For decades, my Father has kept diaries. Part of his early morning routine, was writing up the previous days events and whilst I have only seen a few entries, they were mainly about the Countryside and Nature, but often included events, personal thoughts etc
Yesterday, I decided to pick up the gauntlet and carry on his tradition.
And I already had begun The Nature Diaries (Of sorts).
No idea yet what or how I will post, as to be honest, at the moment I just seem to be pottering around aimlessly and feel nothing but emptiness and numbness.
Some days you may get an essay, others may just say North Wind doth blow.
Today has been almost Spring like, after a -5c and icy start, the sun had burst and we’ve had a day of bright blue skies, exactly the kind of day it was on the morning of Friday 26th January, as it was one of the last full conversations I had with my Father, which resulted in him asking the Doctors & Nurses to move his bed so he could see for himself out of the window, also for them to open said window, so he could feel the breeze.
This they duly did and his bed stayed in that position until his passing.

This is for you Father
– Karen – xIMG_3124IMG_3125

 

Great Spotted Woodpecker …

Over the last few weeks, I have been watching the comings & goings of Woodpeckers to the feeders.
Definitely 2 different lots nesting, perhaps even 3!

Anyhoo, this mornings coffee rewarded me with such a treat.
Hearing a sound, I follow it and see we have a juvenile in the garden.
He hopped onto the birdbath, called out for feeding (He best make on, as the parents only feed them for approx a week after fledging) and then he decided to take a wee bath, before popping up a tree.
A true delight to watch!

Down in Yorkshire, in my parents garden, they too have had W,oodpeckers visiting the garden, but they raided the nearby nesting boxes and mum & dad witnessed the new hatched young been pulled out by Woody.
They are known for doing this and will raid boxes for eggs too, all to feed.
You can get metal rings for your nest box entrance holes and its a good idea to do so, will help stop Woody taking other chicks!

Will be keeping a look out to see if more juveniles appear
– Karen – x

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Watching & Waiting

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Breakfast Time

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Having a Drink

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Red Top

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Having a wee bath & joined by a Siskin

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Away up a Tree

 

A Lump in my Throat…

With this new February Snow, am keeping an eye open for new Birds etc and am pleased to report that the Yellow Hammer has made an appearance for the first time at Tulloch this morning and that we have two Tree Creepers in the garden.

I have also been watching our Wee Buck on a daily basis.
Other Fallow have now appeared in the field to find food, so was interested to see how our Wee Buck would react to his fellow Deer.
This morning has seen a fresh Stag appear, very grand he is.
After hanging around grazing all morning, the fresh Stag has led the way to find shelter for this afternoon, watching them all jump the fence one by one, there was one hind, a younger Stag and our Wee Buck left, as I type, it looks like the hind and younger Stag are trying to encourage our Wee Buck to jump the fence also and I can’t but help feel a wee lump in me throat, is today the day he leaves us to join the herd???
– Karen – x

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Our Wee Buck

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Another Stag we saw, notice his Antlers!

Loch Tulloch …

Christmas and Hogmanay have just flown on by, it seems to have been nothing but constant work and there hasn’t been enough hours in the day and I ended 2016 feeling a tad frustrated at been behind the schedule in my head, but, today has seen GREAT progress.

AT LAST, work has begun on the wildlife Pond (Well now actually a Loch).
We have a builder here at present and his work required the use of a mini digger, I said brilliant, as I had just the job for it!

Now this pond Loch, has been in my mind for sometime, Alistair and I had discussed it, planned a size etc.
Our builder (Who we shall name as Bob), got the digger into position and would begin the scraping, he had soon gotten round to working round the wee island, I halted proceedings and said I thought that we should go bigger.
Off Bob went to get stakes etc and the new size was marked out, he began to continue and I would go to make us a Coffee.

Coffees in hand, I returned, he had pretty much got it done.
Bob jumped off the digger for his beverage, saw my face and said; ‘You want to go bigger don’t you’?
I said, yes, just a wee bit.
It was 15minutes later, when the pond then became a Loch!

There is lots more work to do yet, but am filled with joy at todays progress and my mind is full of excitement and am already imaging the Flocks of Ducks and Skeins of Geese which will visit us in the future (Unless Barclay claims it as his very own Swimming Pool)
– Karen – x

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The Digger Arrives

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Hmmm, think it needs to be bigger

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Bit bigger still

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Bob

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Yes, I was allowed on said Digger 😃😃😃