It was typical that all things were against us for our first few days of being wild. The wet and windy half-term weather combined with lots of driving for a family funeral meant we were up against it to fit in moments of nature.
Day 1: A wet walk, collecting pebbles and leaves. We wouldn’t have bothered with a walk today, given the weather, but it was good to get the wellies on and get outside.
Day 2: Hours on the M25 but there were birds to be spotted through the window – we saw a kestrel, herring gulls and two buzzards in the course of our journey.
Day 3 – 5: This is where the game changed. We went camping to a basic, natural and beautiful campsite with lots of friends. It is harder to pick the unwild moments from the day, because there weren’t any.
Wild highlights included:
- finding toad tadpoles
- making mudcakes
- collecting an incredible array of sea creatures and shells at the beach (starfish, crabs, anemones, clams, bristle worms to name a few)
- being woken early by birdsong – there was a particularly vocal robin at 5 am
- and mainly just being outside all the time.
This was wildness that took more than one bath to scrub off.
Day 6: Back to school, but incredible sunshine. My daughter picked poppies on the way to school (her teacher is very tolerant of the random assortment of nature that gets brought in by my collector girl on a daily basis). After school, we lay in a hammock and looked up at the trees – we are living with Granny at the moment and enjoying her beautiful garden very much.
Day 7: We’ll be trying some art activities from ‘Collect, print and paint from nature’ by John Hawkinson later. It’s very old-school (published in 1968) and we won’t be setting up a killing jar for butterflies as recommended (using 880 ammonia or carbon tetrachloride!), but the rest is lovely!
It’s been a week of extremes – days where it has been hard to fit in wildness, and days where it has been abundant. I’m glad we’ve managed to make a little space for nature whatever the week and the weather has thrown at us.