Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Some changes, and tree climbing

I've changed my blog :) Sorry if you don't like it, but I was finding that the long thin layout was giving me repetitive strain in my wrist on account of having to scroll up and down all the time! So I fancied this more spacious layout, that gives a person a little room to breathe and stretch.

But I've a feeling that more changes are coming this year. I'm not actually going to say what they might be, because I'm not at liberty to do so yet (oooh, are you intrigued?!) - but I do think there's going to be a period of transition in the second half of this year. (I sound like I'm reading a horoscope! Sorry :D ) Lots of decisions to be made about books, careers, houses, college courses, and all kinds of things. And I'm looking forward to finding out what comes next. I think I've been getting a bit frustrated at life staying the same for a bit too long now. It's not good to stagnate, is it? I don't want things to change too much, because life is good, but I think things could just do with a bit of a shake up. It's time to start getting out into the world a bit more, at weekends, exploring and seeing the world properly. Whenever I think of my little family going walking I always imagine us high up, at the summit of a wee mountain, seeing the curve of the Earth on the horizon and getting a good sense of what's going on below us. It's like my dream flying, and I feel a bit like one of Terry Pratchett's small gods; I want to get up high so that I can evaluate my little patch of world, see what needs doing and then make plans to sort it out. (What am I on about?!) Anyway, big changes coming - I can taste them in the air!

Something I would really like to do more of is tree-climbing. I don't mean in the same way as we did at Go Ape, with harnesses and wires and all that gubbins. I mean just climbing trees, like kids used to be allowed to do in parks. I climb trees wherever I can. I can't help it. If I see a climbing tree I have to climb it, before my children even think of it. I get competitive about it too - if Thomas sets off up the tree, I have to climb it faster, and I have to get up higher. There's a nice tree to climb in the park, across the road from my grandma and grandad's house. It's not massive, but it's got thick, long branches that stretch right out to the side, and you can sit several people along them side by side. The tree in today's photos is at Alnwick Gardens in Northumberland. I can't remember the age of the tree, but it's very old; but also very beautiful, don't you think? Kev and I climbed it as high as we could. And then the thing about climbing a tree is that I don't really want to come down once I'm up there. I could just sit there, with a book, swinging my legs for hours on end. I could happily take a flask and a sandwich with me and spend one of my days off up there. I really don't know what it is about a tree, but it's absolutely one of my favourite places to be; perhaps actually even my No.1 favourite place to be. I didn't discover that I could climb trees until a couple of years ago. I thought I'd be rubbish at it, with my weedy arms and general lack of strength and fitness. But I found that I'm much stronger than I imagined - probably due to having been lifting and keeping up with three small children for the last six years running (who needs gym membership?!). I climbed a nice tree when we had our walk along the river the other day. The first branch was quite high up and I thought I was going to have to give up because my legs wouldn't quite stretch far enough. But in the end I used my arms to pull myself up just enough to get that first foothold and then I was away. I was very impressed with myself. Kev likes to climb as well, though I'm not sure he feels quite the same pull towards the tree as I do. It's a strange thing. Just a shame that there aren't more good climbing trees around here. I wish we had a good one in our garden. When I lived up the road at my dad's house our next door neighbours had a super climbing tree - it was an apple tree, with a tyre swing on it. And it had long branches that made really good seats, and there was a space for each of us four kids to sit on - me and Noomski, Caroline and Darren :) Ah, good times, good times...
If we ever do move house I think that a decent climbing tree in the garden will be a prerequisite - for the boys, for the boys, of course!


  1. I have got to say that your blog puts mine to shame lol. I just can't seem to find the time to write in it. I do love your blog, I have been reading it for the past 1/2 hour or so. Of course I'd love to sit down & write in mine more. Heck I'd love to sit & write letters lol! I don't know what's happened to me this year... I dare not say PPD, but something of the nature perhaps. Anyway I am working on your letter my dear friend! I lost the other one you'd sent me I am going to look for it today, been doing some spring cleaning so we shall see if I can't find it. Oh lord I am rambling lol!

  2. tell meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee what the changes will beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee, i'm too nosey for cliff hangers like that!

  3. Ha ha! No! I'll tell you soon enough. I can't say yet, because it's not just to do with me. And anyway, it's not really all that exciting!

  4. I love trees too - for different reasons. And I love them most in winter when you can see their skeletons. They are so pretty and beautiful to touch, make you feel like you are in touch with earthiness. Climbing them - yes I can understand that too. I once jumped out of a tree and sprained my ankle. Anyway, as well as trees, I love your writing - it draws me in and wraps me in love.

  5. Thanks, Mum :) I love your writing too - it's like dancing in fires made of driftwood.