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May 2021

A week ago I was wearing a woolly hat, but now as we head into June, I'm desperately searching for Summer clothes. Temperatures have been rising ridiculously quickly and I can barely keep up. The grass has decided to burst full steam ahead in growth and all of a sudden we're surrounded in striking tones of green. So now it's a race against the clock to strim and mow.

I do however leave quite a lot of our lawns and bankings to grow wild, maybe just mowing a path through them so we can enjoy walking along and discovering grasses and wild flowers.

It's been a strange month and truly I feel as though I've been on a roller coaster. There have been some really good times but also some really sad times.

I feel like we've all been doing our very best to get to the other end of Covid, with all its restrictions and fears, only to be left wondering if much has really changed? Will people be kinder, more thoughtful and respect our planet more? I think some will and others will just go back to the way they were before.

Personally I think I need to try harder, to be a better person and just generally do better. To challenge myself and do new things instead of worrying about the 'what ifs'.

On a more positive note, nature is bursting with new life and new growth and everything seems to be thriving. All of a sudden everywhere looks green again. Finally we have some long awaited sun and warmth is spreading across our valley. Flowers and buds are bursting open, birds are fledging, cuckoos are calling and the woodlands are carpeted with bluebells.

There's so much to do outside on these long summery days. I've barely picked up a pencil or paintbrush as I've been busy creating our first pond in our garden, with my partner Clive doing most of the heavy work.

We're also busy getting our veggie patch back to a functional growing area. There's something really quite special about digging up your own veg for tea - and nothing beats a new tattie from the garden with a wee dot of butter on.

Newcastleton Wildlife Club restarted this month too, after such a long wait. It's been tough getting everything sorted as new restrictions and rules came into play, so we've been manically ploughing through all the new requirements to get going again. I've really appreciated everyone's patience and support.

Three Roe deer have become daily visitors and I've grown very fond of them. They're very flighty and sensitive to our movements if we get too close. We've listened to them making barking calls, especially the buck. Maybe he's warning off another male to stop him coming onto his territory,

Last year one Roe gave birth just at the back of our house in the long reeds, as she headed off to graze. We felt very honoured that she should choose our garden as a safe place to give birth.

I think more than ever we need to cherish these special moments, remind ourselves of good times and look out for each other. Make time for those you love the most. I really don't know what I'd do without my family, but my ponies help me enjoy our beautiful countryside and enable me to discover the joys of nature.

I hope you also find ways to support your health and wellbeing. Spend time in nature and enjoy what's on your doorstep.

Look out for:

  • Bluebells

  • Listen for the Cuckoo

  • Spot a red squirrel

  • Make sure there is water for wildlife in your garden

  • Create a wild area in your garden




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