Happy New Year

Round hay bales in pink light in arable field on a frosty morning, Norfolk

Round hay bales in pink light in arable field on a frosty morning, NorfolkThe brief hiatus of Christmas and the end of a year always makes me a little introspective and thoughtful, of both what has gone and what lies ahead.

For me, 2012 was a year of upheaval and transformation and in many ways quite a challenging year, leaving my beloved Ridgeway behind in Oxfordshire to start a new life here in Norfolk.

The changes it brought now see me based in a new, yet familiar,  part of the world. One that I am rapidly growing to love, as indeed I knew I could, and one that has led me to form solid foundations from which I can build my new home and new life. I’m very much looking forward to putting down my roots and establishing my new life here in Norfolk

It seems that the theme of change and transformation will certainly be continuing with me into 2013, for the first quarter at the very least, with work to renovate and transform my new home set to begin soon and coinciding with the launch of my new photography business.

I certainly will not be bored!


A Berryless Holly This Christmas

Berryless holly leaf with melting frost

Berryless holly leaf with melting frost

There was a specific image I’d had in mind to post for this month ever since my move to Norfolk in February, which was of a frosty holly packed full of beautiful red berries taken in the plantation where I often walk my dog which is a copse full of holly as well as oak and beech.

Well it seems both frosty days and, more worryingly, berries are in short supply. When I first started to notice the absence of any bright berries I put it down to the unusually mild Autumn we’ve had with lots of rain but little in the way of true wintry weather and assumed the harvest would just be a little late.

But it is now only 4 days away from Christmas and still only one or two bushes in the whole copse have berries, and even then it is very often just a sad, small, lone anaemic-looking berry.

This year Norfolk again had very high numbers of seasonal migrants and waxwings due, it is believed, to a berry/fruit harvest failure in Scandinavia. If my fears are realised and our berries have indeed failed too, then it may well be a tough Christmas for many of our over wintering birds and they will need all the help they can get.