Spring Tree Blossom

rambling ratz

It is that time of the year when the grey British landscape suddenly turns into an oriental brush painting; a silk screen of delicate pink and white blossom shimmering against blue skies. It won’t last!photo of cherry plum blossom

Thursday 20th March 2014 marks the vernal equinox, the first day of spring in the northern hemisphere. During an equinox the Earth’s tilt relative to the sun is zero and the length of day and night is approximately equal. This auspicious event is marked in various ways. For Christians, the date of Easter is set as the first Sunday after a full moon following the vernal equinox. Boatyard workers in Annapolis, Maryland hold a « Burning of the Socks » festival which speaks for itself, feet are not graced by socks until the autumn equinox. It is also marked by World Storytelling Day. photo of cherry plum blossom

As spring represents new life, pagans throughout the centuries have celebrated various gods and…

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Blackbirds and Father’s Day

rambling ratz

Sunday June 15th 2014 is Father’s Day in the United Kingdom. Male blackbirds make excellent fathers; great link eh? Here we see daddy blackbird showing his young fledgling the best places in the garden to scratch around for tasty insects. He will also teach his young charge to wait outside the back door impatiently for some sultanas.photo of blackbird & fledgeling

The Eurasian blackbird, Turdus murula is actually a member of the thrush family. The males have black plumage with a striking yellow beak and eye ring, whereas the females and youngsters are brown splodgy things. They are a very common and vocal garden bird. The blackbird is the national bird of Sweden. Up until the eighteenth century they were also known as ouzels. Most of you will be familiar with the nursery rhyme in which some blackbirds form the filling of a pie. It may sound like nonsense, but apparently during the sixteenth…

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