Welcome visitors

Today’s guest picture(s) shows the wonderful flowers organised by Valeria, Joe’s sister-in-law, for Joe and Annie’s recent ceremony …..


….some of which turned out to be entirely edible, pot and all.  There were made by the Botanical Baker.

cake cut

We had another fine day here and we are in danger of getting so used to good weather that it will come as a nasty shock when it starts raining again.

In the meantime, we are enjoying it.

We spent the morning in the garden, Mrs Tootlepedal working, and I wandering  about.  It was she who spotted the visitors though.

We usually have to wait until next month before we see a small tortoiseshell or….

small totoiseshell butterfly on chionodoxa

…a peacock butterfly…

peacock butterfly on chionodoxa

…so I don’t think that I can have ever taken a picture of a butterfly visiting scillas before.

And although the sight of a small tortoiseshell butterfly warming its wings in the sun on a paving stone is quite familiar…

small totoiseshell butterfly sunning

…I am pretty sure that this is my first ever shot of a peacock on a daffodil.

peacock butterfly on daff

To add to the garden of delights, a little flock of blue tits passed through and one sat one enough to get its picture taken.

bue tit in garden

At different times I took my pocket camera out to admire the flowers….

pulmonaria, buttercup, fritillary, scilla

…and my bird camera to do the same, though on this occasion my shot of the scillas was photobombed by a butterfly.

daffs, primrose and tortoiseshell

I spent some fruitless time trying to catch any of the many bees that were buzzing about but they would visit the hellebores and disappear into the down facing flowers.

The tidying up bug was in evidence again today, and we added a second shelf to our library of logs…

log library

…I finished the transfer of Bin B to Bin C (and an overflow to Bin D)…

compost in progress

…and Mrs Tootlepedal tidied up the greenhouse sufficiently to give her somewhere to have a rest after all the activity.

Mrs T resting

For the first time this year, it was positively warm in the garden and there was no need for a coat.

Once again, birds didn’t come to the feeder but the garden wasn’t entirely birdless by any means.  We have resident blackbirds and dunnocks.

blackbird and dunnock on fence

I made some brown lentil soup for lunch.  This was a triumph because to make brown lentil soup you both have to remember to soak the lentils over night, and then crucially, to remember that you have got soaked lentils ready for soup making the next day.

After lunch and a bit of a rest, I went out for my permitted exercise of the day.  (Mrs Tootlepedal is taking her exercise in the garden.)

As I had cycled yesterday, I walked today, and was quite happy to do so as by this time, the wind had got up and, coming from the north as it was, there was a distinct nip in the air at times.

Still, in sheltered spots, it was warm and I chose a few sheltered spots to pass through on my way.

Walk 2 Duchess Bridge

I was following the route of Walk 2 of the Langholm Walks, though in the ‘wrong’ direction.

wood at Breckonwrae

When I got out of the woods and onto the road to Potholm, the views of the woods…

Potholm hill ridge

…and hills on the far side of the river…

Potholm Hill

…..were quite good enough to make me ignore the breeze.

And if I got bored with the views, the famous two headed lambs of Milnholm were always a distraction.

milnholm lambs

I crossed the river by Potholm Bridge and and walked up the hill to the track back to Langholm,

This seat came in handy after the climb up the hill from the river and I rested there for a moment.

bench above potholm

There were plenty of clumps of wild primroses beside the track…

primroses Langfauld

…and views back towards the road that I had walked along earlier…

Looking back over Milnholm

…and I got back to the Castleholm in good order.  I spent some time there trying to see if I could spot the nuthatch that I saw the other day, but it wasn’t playing today so I went home.

Mrs Tootlepedal had been busy while I was out and had made another shelf for the log library.  We will fill it up tomorrow.

We had baked potatoes for tea followed by the forced rhubarb, glazed and roasted and served with custard for afters.

Once again a standing bird is standing in for the flying bird of the day.  In saw this lone oyster catcher as I came along the Esk  at the end of my afternoon exercise.

evening oyster catcher




Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

41 thoughts on “Welcome visitors

  1. The edible pots from the Botanical Baker are a great idea. A beautiful day in your area, and I enjoyed the photos, especially the “two-headed” lambs. I can see why they were a distraction. 🙂

    Our feeder is continuing to please our avian visitors, as well as the resident chipmunk. We still have our golden crowned sparrows and a new one I tried to look up before the bird made a getaway. The new one appears to be a white crowned sparrow. The golden crown ones are still visiting as well.

    1. I don’t know what has happened top the birds at all. I don’t see any flocks of them as I cycle about so they must have left the district for some better place. I wonder if they know something that we don’t know.

  2. I saw a butterfly today too. A question mark, I think. It was a surprise.
    The sheltered part of your walk made me realize how anxious I am to see leaves again.
    The landscape views of course are beautiful as always. If you have as many children reading your blog as I do mine there will be many questions about two headed lambs, I’m sure.

    1. I am not aware of any children reading my posts. I am not surprised that they read yours as your posts are so full of knowledge. Our trees are generally leafless so we have some time to go before full spring yet.

  3. Wow! That cake gave me a great surprise-that looks amazing! Hope it was as tasty as it was beautiful. We are very far behind you weather-wise, no surprise, but we’ve got the crocus starting so that’s delightful.
    I don’t soak my lentils-brown or otherwise. I just cook them longer in the soup.

  4. Love the two headed lamb🤣 theres nothing like the joy and anticipation after spring cleaning the greenhouse. We are currently saving for a new one – the old one still resides at the previous homestead.

  5. We are in Day One of a three-week lockdown. So far the rules say no walking or exercising outside – and specifically no walking of dogs (I expect that is so that one cannot use a dog as an excuse). I hope the powers-that-be rethink this before long.

    1. Wow, that is strict about no dog walking. It must be that way in Italy, too. I saw a video of a small dog in a harness being lowered from a balcony there to walk around on a long leash.

  6. You don’t seem to meet many people on your walks, that’s good. We too moved wood around and worked in the garden. Our flowers are a bit behind yours spring is on its way or will be after this cold they forecast has passed , take care both of you.

    1. We are taking care as much as we can. From our time living near Fort William, we well remember how long it takes spring to arrive in the Highlands.

  7. Making the best of the lockdown in setting up this log library. Only a few drilled holes in some logs to make it into a superb luxury insect hotel. And the weather allows stunning views of a beautiful landscape.

    1. We have another pile of old planks in the garden as an insect hotel so we are not neglecting them We are grateful for our current spell of good weather.

  8. That two-headed lamb made me laugh! And the picture of the daffodil with the peacock butterfly is a stunner. And, as we would say in Maine, that is some cake.

  9. Your log library is beautiful – something about the shape and texture of the structure is very appealing to me. It suits your garden very well.

  10. An amazing celebration cake and pretty flowers too….all very fitting for such a special occasion…hope they send you some! Lovely views on your walk and good to see such a bright eyed oyster catcher…maybe he can see an oyster! Wonder what he does eat from the river?

  11. Fantastic to see the compost and the greenhouse. I have never seen butterflies so early. Maybe they came just to cheer you! Love the pushmepullyou lambs.

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