Saturday, 25 December 2010
Well we did run the Owl Evening last Saturday, the snow was not too bad, at least not in this immediate area, although it was much worse around us, and Jan was stuck in Cheltenham trying to get out for over two hours. About half the people made it and six mad people (but very nice!) drove all the way from Norfolk and then back again just for the evening. I have to say they not only did well, but watching the owls fly with a bright moon on the crisp and cold snow, was particularly special, and as they were late arriving, not surprisingly, I gave them a short guided tour after the flying. It was a good last Owl Evening of the year and those who missed it are going to come to one of the ones we are going to run in February.

Monday it started to snow at about 12.45 so Holly left in case she could not get back, so did Angela as it gets much worse in the Forest. It carried on snowing until about 8.30pm and I know because we went carol singing in the snow, it was very Dickensian, and great fun, although a bit cold by the end of it.

I wanted to have a drinks party before Christmas but did not dare invite people until I knew that the heating oil had arrived because otherwise they would have frozen in the house, luckily the oil arrived, so we are safe and warm, the hay arrived for the horses, and I even managed to go shopping for food, although it was a good job that Jan came with me or I would have taken one look at the overly full car park and driven home again!!

Wednesday Mark and Adam with help from John, Zoe and Josh, and all the rest of us did the new (yet another replacement for something taken down) shelf perch on the eagle side of the indoor Hawk Walk, so that it is ready for the heating elements to be put on. It was great teamwork and we got finished just before dark, Mark and Adam finished off the finer points on Thursday morning. The only disappointing thing was that the snow at no time was any good for making a snowman, it is very fine and does not stick together, I guess because it is so cold.

Simon's Goshawk caught its first rabbit this week, not sure who had the larger grin, him or the Goshawk, although we were amazed last week when Simon admitted that his supper had been 18 chocolate penguins'!! That has to be a record, even Adam thought he would not manage that many!

My drinks party went well I think, at least everyone said they enjoyed it, although on reflection I guess it would be unlikely that they would have said they hadn't!! Anyway thanks to Nick Swan all the radiators worked, so the house was warm for a change (and only for that evening!) and I lit the fire in the sitting room as well as the wood burning stove in my office, so it was toasty warm in both rooms. I put the food in the dining room and the dogs were very good and did not steal any! It was lovely to see the house full of people, all the mulled wine went, I was even nice to the children who came, although we did throw them out in the snow for a short while! The Christmas tree looks lovely, the house looks lovely, oh and guess what, the Piano is fixed, no longer ivory, but plastic, but it looks so nice and its great to have it back, and it is tuned and I have a piece I want to learn on it.

All staff are off now until early January, although Simon insists on feeding the birds which is very nice of him, but I suspect it is because he wants to watch and see who is thinking about nesting. He said that Athena (Tawny Eagle) was sitting on the nest which is very good news. He and Joan are here most of the time, so I bump into them occasionally.

I have had a lovely Christmas so far I went to midnight mass last night, it was really deep and crisp, although not particularly even! It is lovely to sing carols, they are my favourites. The horses went out early into the field, they play in the snow! And the dogs and I went round the field, we ended up on the ice on the pond - it is ssssssssssoooooooo thick now. Alice and James Lowe invited me to Christmas lunch which was wonderful, although I may never have to eat again!! I still have to remove a splinter from my thumb, the only problem with this weather is that cuts don't heal, they just crack, and take much longer to get better. A very very merry Christmas to all. Oh and whoever sent me the Lily of the Valley stuff, thank you so much, but I have no idea who it was!!


'The Crafting Owl' said...

Merry Christmas Jemima!
We came to your Valentine's Owl Evening and it was a truly magical experience and one that I will never forget!


I have to say that keeping a weblog can at times become compulsive and at other times a chore. Sometimes I am berrated for not keeping it up and sometimes I get wonderful comments from people who follow the news of the Centre.

It is fun to share the daily goings on here, some good and some bad, some funny and some sad, but all a part of our daily lives.
And as I said before its a pretty cool to be here and it is a great place to visit, you should try coming and watching the birds and meeting the staff and of course the dogs.

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An interesting video on Lead

An interesting video on Lead

I find it staggering that people who want to hunt don't see the value in changing their ammunition from lead to a safer product. We have stopped using lead in petrol, in paint, in our water pipes, but they still want to use lead - ah well, apparently eating it not only kills birds but leads to reduced intelligence in humans......................

NO ONE is asking you to stop legal and genuine hunting, they are just asking you to change your ammunition!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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