Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Severe Weather Warning?

The Met Office is at it again!

We went to bed last night with the threat of another severe weather warning.  Opening the curtains this morning confirmed our doubts, not a thing!  Up at the cottage there was granted, an inch of snow but how on earth does the Met Office justify the huge sums of money it costs us every year?

Up at the cottage, the damp atmosphere down by the burn encourages lots of lichen to grow on the old thorns.  I have looked at it loads of times but today I saw the picture.

The Children's Mother keeps telling me what this little plant is, and I keep forgetting!

I have been watching the Women's Ice Dancing at the Olympics as I am writing this.  Some wonderful routines, one in particular, a Canadian girl whose Mother tragically died of a heart attack a couple of days ago, danced beautifully.

Now that takes guts!

Tuesday, 23 February 2010

The Mole Catcher

I have been following  Being a Smallholder and the last few days she has been describing her mole catching experiences.  I promised this picture I took yesterday morning at a local farm.

I am told that this tradition of hanging dead moles on the farm fence started so that the local Mole Catcher could prove/demonstrate his skill to his client and other landowners.  A bit gruesome for some no doubt but that's life.

When I was young, I used to see this quite often but not so much now, I guess the general public are just a bit too sensitive today.

Every Home Should Have One!

My pheasant friend was waiting for me again this morning.  We had a chat then he trotted up the drive beside the car, perhaps he thinks that my red Golf is a suitable mate?  I will have to take the Land Rover tomorrow!

Monday, 22 February 2010

Snowy Morning, Frosty Evening

I woke this morning, to a lovely bright snowy morning with patches of mist lying here and there.

Jobs done at the yard and off up to the cottage for donkeys and hens, and a continued glorious morning.  In the top of the Leylandii in the garden this cock Robin was enjoying the sun and calling out his claim to his territory.

Home for lunch and continue to tackle the 'three man weeks' of the children's ski washing.  One day I will go skiing and the children can do mine!!

Wednesday, 17 February 2010

The Lakes

The Children's Mother and I finally made it to the Lake District today.  It was a bit hectic as being winter we had all the animals to see to before setting off and on our return home.

Time was limited with a 90 minute drive each way, so we chose to start our short walk in Rosthwaite, Borrowdale.  The Children's Mother was keen to walk up to Watendlath Tarn which strangely over the last  thirty five years of walking and climbing, I had somehow not managed to visit!

We had time for a quick hot chocolate at the at the little tea room here and some delicious ginger bread for me.  Sadly the tea room is not 'gluten free' out of season so the Children's Mother had to go without.

We left the North East in thick fog on the promise of glorious sunshine in The Lakes and we weren't disappointed!

Leaving the M6 to the artics, we drove home over Hartside Pass and had this lovely view back to the lakeland fells.

(And I got my feet back onto snow!)

The fog at home hadn't lifted all day which made the trip all the better!

Back to re-arranging furniture tomorrow....

Sunday, 14 February 2010


As promised, snowdrops!

Not the best picture of snowdrops ever but still.  My first attempt was foiled when on of the terriers put his paw in the middle of the clump, just as I was pressing the shutter!

While I was loading the snowdrops onto the computer I found this picture from one morning a couple of days ago, I had forgotten all about it.

It was a very frosty morning and I had just got into the car to go to the yard.  The side window was covered by this wonderful show of ice crystals.   I am really pleased that it came out so well.

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Caterpillars, Peacocks, and Muddy Dogs!

 An icy morning with a little dusting of snow making the minor roads round here a bit tricky.  Still, the light conditions were really nice so I will bore you with another shot of the 'caterpillar'.  I only stopped here to watch six deer make their way across the corner of one of these fields but they were too far away to get a picture of them, 1000mm lens please!

Up at the cottage and a walk with the dogs round our neighbours fields down to the top of 'our' burn. The dogs came back filthy and my Mother made a timely exit left on the bus to Hexham.  One of the dogs still has a large, slightly smelly patch of dirty on his shoulder, and no, I don't want to know either....!

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

I have been suffering a huge lack of inspiration the last few days, compounded by chronic lethargy!

Remembered the camera tonight when I was walking the dogs and managed a couple of shots despite it being virtually dark.  Must try harder....!

Wednesday, 3 February 2010


There is no snow down here at home this morning but the drive down from the cottage last night was a little 'ticklish' to say the least, black ice everywhere and cars from the ice free valley tearing over-confidently towards me.

I passed a few wrecked cars on trailers this morning though!

Up at the cottage there was still a covering of snow, all bright and frosty.

The donkeys long since stripped the bark off this fallen tree by the stream and one end is used as a look-out by the local rabbits!

On the tiny meadow at the bottom of my mothers land, the wild flower stems are once again emerging from the snow cover.

It is looking quite dark outside, perhaps the prediction of snow this evening will be correct.  I better check the Landrover.

Tuesday, 2 February 2010

"Met. Office on The Line For You Sir"

"Where the hell did this lot come from?"

The light, early morning rain fell as forecast this morning!

And I wasn't the only disgruntled one!

Considering that the Met. Office is nominally owned by the Ministry of Defence, if I were a Tornado pilot I wouldn't dare take off on the strength of the forecasts!

Still, there were some compensations!

If this was the predicted 'rain', I dread to think what the promised snow will be like tomorrow?