Gratitude

Feeling so lucky to live where I do. 
Marveling at the wonders of spring; tulips and forget-me-nots...

 ...the first cheese from our goat (a simple soft cheese made by heating the milk to just-boiling, adding lemon juice and allowing it to separate, then straining it), so creamy and unexpectedly rich...

 ...the bluebell woods in full bloom, perfect in the evening sunshine...

...and ferns, unrolling themselves in the undergrowth behind the house, getting ready to spread their leaves. 

I'm so grateful for the wonders of spring. Even though our winter was mild and easy in comparison to some we've had recently, the new season - the freshness of things, the sunshine and the growth is a balm to the soul.

.

 It's not every day you find a stag stuck in your hammock.

Which is good, or I wouldn't have any more hammocks.

The fabulous K went to check on his mushroom logs and found this fella who thankfully hadn't been there too long, and also thankfully hadn't broken a leg. Assistance came from our amazing friends and neighbours who happen to be wildlife rangers, and the deer was freed, at the cost of my Dunnes Stores 14.99 hammock in lime green (part of which, as you can see below, is now forming a rather fetching adornment on his antlers.)


On a more serious note, it felt a bit strange to be rescuing this creature when in another situation other people, or even we ourselves in the future might have killed him for food. Deer are a pest around here and are culled. I have very mixed feelings about it. I love seeing them, they are incredibly beautiful creatures, and at the same time, they destroy all the trees we plant - they destroyed about 80 trees the first year we were here. We've had to resort to huge electric fencing to get any trees planted since, which is bonkers, so its both lovely to see them but bad news for our trees. 

Anyway, this lucky boy got away. For now anyhow. Hopefully his antler decorations will soon fall off. Or at the very least impress the lady deer for him.

Plants just want to grow

This is what I've always found so encouraging about gardening - you plant some seeds and they try their best, despite all your lack of attention - they want to grow.

Sadly the abuse of these seeds was too much! We collected a pile of acorns to plant a year or two back and promptly forgot about them.

When last spring came they all sprouted and reached down to find a bit of moisture, failing to find any in a pretty sturdy ceramic cup. The roots curled round and round, making this woven base that holds them all together in an acorn sculpture.
Of course, they all dried out after dying of thirst...but the results are quite lovely.

Oops.
Good sculptor. Bad gardener.