Saturday, 2 May 2015

Odds And Ends: Newt Hunting, Top Creation And General Stuff

It's been another busy week here.

On Thursday I did another talk on butterflies and Chalk Downlands, this time out on the hills beneath glowering grey skies which held the threat of what turned out to be hail, to a group of students from another college- 28 teenage lads, whom I had been warned would be a pain in the whatsit, intent only on mucking about and pushing each other down the steep slopes of the hill while not listening to a word I said.

Au contraire as it happens. They turned out to be a lovely bunch of boys who paid attention, asked intelligent questions, told me all about the conservation work they're involved with (including one lad who expressed a wish to have his own sheep and another who was off to do his first butterfly survey the following day) and they all said thank you and waved goodbye out of the minibus at the end. So that was All Good too.

Thursday night, the Butterfly Wizard and I met up just before dusk at college to survey two of their ponds for Great Crested Newts, now that we both have a licence to do so....


 




 
Despite some Thorough Searching, we didn't find any newts, Great Crested or otherwise although we did see a Froggy, heard a Reed Warbler and saw a Snipe. On the way there a male kestrel was perched on a telegraph pole and on the way home I spotted a Little Owl who swooped down out of one of the farm buildings and up into a tree. I got out to have a proper look at him and he peered back at me in that way Owls have. It's a look that says you think you are looking at me, but in fact it is I who am looking at you.

Yesterday I saw my old friend and colleague Mandy in Bournemouth for a put your bones back in the right places session. As always after one of her treatments I felt sleepy, so I indulged in a sewing afternoon and whipped up a couple of tops. No pattern, because I am lazy and can't be doing with all that painstaking measuring, cutting and pinning :o) As with the jarmy bottoms, I used an existing top as a template.....

We saw old friends for supper last night. We all ate and drank too much and spent most of the evening crying with laughter, and as a result I am dehydrated this morning and not in the mood for Poppy's exuberant HI MUM! LET'S PLAY THAT GAME WHERE YOU'RE TRYING TO WORK AND I JUMP ON YOUR LAP AND OFF YOUR LAP, ON YOUR LAP AND OFF YOUR LAP OVER AND OVER AND OVER AGAIN!

Poor Pop - Ted isn't in the mood for the game either (in the version involving Ted she substitutes my lap for his head), so she's contenting herself with chucking her ball noisily about instead.
There are seeds to sow and seedlings to re pot this weekend; revision to organise for my exam which is in a fortnight; butterfly transect data to enter on line; minutes from the latest committee meeting to write up and email out; new school trainers to buy for L; washing to do and hoovering too; a visit to pay to Gran's to see her and Em, my youngest niece; a trip to the Copse up the lane to see the Bluebells in all their Blue Finery; some sewing alterations to make, and then a Chinese for tea with a chilled bottle of white burgundy (in honour of His Grace, the Duke whom I met on Monday) and a movie on the tele. Perfic. 

Hope you all have a Lovely Weekend,

CT :o)

26 comments:

  1. Wonderful and spectacular photos.

    irene
    xxx

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  2. You should have your own television series CT. You always tell us something new. I saw a newt in Portugal recently. Never see them here in Ireland. Once saw a black scorpion.

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    1. Ooh- I'd love to see a Black Scorpion (from a safe distance, of course) :o)

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  3. You're busy, busy, busy! I love how you did all that sewing because you were feeling sleepy. I usually lie on the sofa with my eyes closed and my mouth open when I'm feeling sleepy. And I love the tenuous link between seeing a butterfly and a bottle of Burgundy. Nicely done. Have a wonderful weekend. CJ xx

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    1. I'm smiling at the mental image of you asleep on the sofa with your mouth open :o) TBH, I should have given in and read a book and fallen asleep, because I was dead on my feet by the time I crawled into the bath before going out. I should have added a pic of the White Burgundy -it's named after the Duke, with a pic of him on the bottle and a blurb about them too (perfect excuse for drinking it). Have a lovely weekend too xx

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  4. All Very Good Things indeed...:)

    i'm in perpetual awe of your mad skillz with the sewing....especially your thumbing your nose at the notion of a pattern. a girl after my own heart :)

    xo

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    1. I'm glad it's not just me that falls asleep at the thought of a pattern! I am having sewing classes this summer so hopefully I will get better at using them! xx

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  5. Always nice to read about people interested in conservation, sounds like the evening turned out good for you and the students. Nice photos.

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    1. It is, isn't it? They were such an enthusiastic bunch, it did my heart good to see it. Thank you for the comment, Ian.

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  6. Once again a great read with all that's going on in your life. NO Newt but you did see a number of birds which was lovely. Try drinking water before you do a lot of drinking, it will help hangovers! Have a lovely weekend.

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    1. I live on water Margaret, I'm just too old to drink more than a glass or two and not suffer for it next day! x

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  7. Having been watched by a night-time owl a few weeks ago, I can conform that they own the encounter from beginning to end

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    1. I remember your Tawny. Such fantastic birds. I once came across one in broad daylight snoozing on a fence post, he opened his eyes and stared straight at me for a few seconds before gliding off into the woods. Magic.

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  8. Lovely material for your new tops. Though when it'll be warm enough to wear them without a cardi I don't know!

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    1. Well, that is a good point. I secretly sewed some magic spells into the stitching for good weather, just incase :o) xx

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  9. Well done with the lads. My friend once had a tawny owl land in the street right in front of him as he was walking home from the pub...now why doesn't that happen to me (but then I don't walk home from pubs very often).

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    1. Those wildlife encounters you can't plan for are always the most exciting :o)

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  10. So glad to hear the butterfly talks went so well and I love the tops you've made (such pretty material). Enjoy your weekend :)

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    1. Thanks my friend. Just wish it would warm up for the moths...

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  11. I think a bunch of boy's are easier to handle than girls, glad they enjoyed you talk, and I'm with the chap who wants to have sheep (missed my calling) . I was thinking of making a top, looked at the instructions then put it back, so well done for making yours from another top.. very talented. You are up to a lot so have a nice time.
    Amanda xx

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    1. I think you could be right about the boys. More straightforward perhaps? I think you should volunteer as a shepherdess- plenty of sheep about being used as conservation grazers- would tick two boxes at once. I do mine every other weekend so it isn't onerous at all :o) xx

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  12. Shame about the newts..which I can do.
    Sewing I can't.
    White Burgundy,I can!
    Jane x

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    1. Yup, thin on the ground newt-wise, but plenty of wine knocking about! x

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  13. Hey CT,
    I tend to read when I am tired. It means I don;t have to move too much. We have been stuck indoors this weekend. My sister in law has kindly taken Honey out, but I am thinking that I may have to escape after tea, and stretch the legs. I am getting cabin fever! Nice tops too. Clever old you. I am having my first crochet lesson next Friday. I have the hook and the wool.
    Leanne xx

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    1. I like watching period dramas when I really need to stop- Jane Eyre being my current fave :o)

      I also get cabin fever if stuck indoors too long.

      Excellent news on the crochet lessons- I shall look forward to hearing all about it and seeing what you make. Crocheting is fab xxx

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Thank you for leaving a comment. I always enjoy reading them and will try my best to reply to every one. CT x