Delight: Tree Climbing

The boys weren’t very enthused by the prospect of a walk, but when I asked them if they wanted to climb trees in Eaves Wood they jumped at the chance. We all clambered into the welcoming limbs of the old coppiced beech. B grinned knowingly, “You think that this is the best climbing tree Dad……but it’s not.”

A daddy-long-legs spider fled to the underside of a branch, but then sat quite patiently whilst we examined it.

By the small oak at the Pepper Pot there’s a small ash which is also good to climb, although the wind was making the higher branches sway rather disconcertingly.

Of course not all of the trees are fit to climb. This stunted oak is like a rounded topiary shrub…

Shaped that way, I suspect, because of the nibbling deer. It was also festooned with oak galls…

B is agile and fearless and some of the trees which I think he won’t be able to climb into actually easily succumb….

Near to this oak he found a tangled yew with many side branches making a tightly wound spiral staircase. He climbed it and then descended via a neighbouring ash. Like a squirrel. Or the ‘Baron in the Trees’.

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Delight: Tree Climbing

Delight: Bubbles

Whilst we were away last week I was thinking about how having kids opens the door to all sorts of pleasures on the beach which might seem a bit like childish pursuits otherwise – digging, damming, rock-pooling, collecting shells and stones or driftwood for a beach fire, drawing in the sand, building sandcastles etc.

All undeniably fun and free to boot.

But of course it’s not just on the beach that that applies. I might still fly a kite without kids to do it with, maybe I would even plodge in puddles if I thought that no-one was watching. But I don’t think that I would blow bubbles – and that would be my loss.

Not that any blowing is necessarily involved….

Nor does the fun stop there. The bubbles can be chased, and caught…

or popped…

….or perhaps just watched and photographed.

Delight: Bubbles

Kite Flying Day

“There! It’s a bird, well….it’s more like a dragon, but it has panda paws and a mane like a lion.”

It was my turn to fly the kite and A was lying in the grass and spinning stories from raw materials provided by the clouds. When she held the line and coaxed the stalling and swooping kite with sharp tugs and murmured commands, and it was my turn to weave tales from the clouds I initially saw only clouds or plumes of smoke, but eventually I managed to join in. Best of all though was just to lie back in the sunshine – a brief respite in a string of squally days – and watch the clouds scudding overhead.

Later I was out for an evening stroll. The sky had changed – behind and above the clouds which had fed our imaginings was a layer of fretted cloud, like a ripple pattern left by the retreating tide in firm sand – mackerel sky?

On the limestone pavement in Pointer Wood I saw this….

The distinctive pattern on its back make me think that it might be a mottled grasshopper, but I’m probably wrong.

I took the permission path to Heald Brow and on the way encountered several very large dryad’s saddle bracket fungus.

 

Bowland Hills and Morecambe Bay from Heald Brow.

Agrimony

It was, as is often the case on my evening walks, really a bit dark for photographs. As well as the agrimony, I saw mullein, harebells, thyme, self-heal, white campion, ragwort and meadow crane’s- bill.

Down by quicksand pool, I could hear more sea-birds than I could see. A turnstone (I think) struggled with the wind on the far bank of the creek.

There’s always something to find on the salt-marsh and tonight it was the feathered remnants of a bird, which it seems had made a meal for something…

Mullein.

Also know as ‘Adam’s flannel’ because the large hairy leaves were used as nature’s toilet paper.

From Jack Scout.

Kite Flying Day

Puddle Plodging

Last Sunday. After some unseasonably mild weather, Friday night had brought payback: torrential rain, proper stair-rods; roads running with streams, huge new puddles in the drive. The weekend brought further heavy showers accompanied by strong winds.

A brief bright spell on Sunday afternoon saw S and I out enjoying the after effects of the storms.

 

We weren’t out for long – once we were out of the shelter of enclosing walls and hedges S found the wind was pushing him into a jog. ‘Too windy Dad’ so we had to beat a hasty retreat.

But he did love those puddles.

Especially running through them kicking up a good splash in the process.

Puddle Plodging