March Outdoor Adventures Round- Up and #LivingLifeWild April Linky

Hi everyone! 

How was your March? We are really enjoying watching Spring blossom and flowers develop, and have started to spot ladybirds, bees and butterflies around too. We have been on lovely countryside walks, wandered through parklands, hunted for minibeasts in the garden, had fun on a Spring scavenger hunt and climbed trees, amongst other things! 

Here are some of our photos from our March adventures…

Living Life Our Way, #LivingLifeWild, Spring, seasons, nature, landscape, environment, green living, outdoors, wildlife, photography
Walking in the countryside
Living Life Our Way, #LivingLifeWild, Spring, seasons, nature, landscape, environment, green living, outdoors, wildlife, photography
Spring Scavenger Hunt in a local park
Living Life Our Way, #LivingLifeWild, Spring, seasons, nature, landscape, environment, green living, outdoors, wildlife, photography
Aquadrome
Living Life Our Way, #LivingLifeWild, Spring, seasons, nature, landscape, environment, green living, outdoors, wildlife, photography
Cassiobury Park
Living Life Our Way, #LivingLifeWild, Spring, seasons, nature, landscape, environment, green living, outdoors, wildlife, photography
Climbing trees
Living Life Our Way, #LivingLifeWild, Spring, seasons, nature, landscape, environment, green living, outdoors, wildlife, photography
Mini creatures in the garden

I have also added some more of my Spring photography to the Signs of Spring Collection.

Living Life Our Way, #LivingLifeWild, Spring, seasons, nature, landscape, environment, green living, outdoors, wildlife, photography
Signs of Spring Collection

The #LivingLifeWild IG hastag is still going strong, so nip over and check out all the gorgeous photos there as well! 

Living Life Our Way, #LivingLifeWild, Spring, seasons, nature, landscape, environment, green living, outdoors, wildlife, photography
#LivingLifeWild

Thank you for reading about our adventures, and hopefully sharing with us your own ones too. Please feel free to drop your links to any relevant posts below, and take a moment to show the other linkies some love too. 💚 Looking forward to reading your posts!


Top Gardening Tips To Make Everyone Green With Envy!

Maintaining your garden to a high standard so that it gathers admiring glances from all quarters is high on the list of serious gardeners. Take a look at these gardening hacks from Rattan Direct and make your neighbours green with envy at your gardening prowess.

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1. Know your garden, the soil and the climate
Cacti survive in arid desserts for a reason, which is why having them in a garden in a wet and windy corner of the UK will not see cacti thrive. Knowing your patch of soil, whether it is acidic or alkaline and how you can change this, as well as making the most of the climate, will help in deciding the best plants to buy and plant, as well as the best spaces in your garden for these plants to flourish. Camellias, for example, prefer a north-facing wall in a court yard and an acid soil, so there is no point planting them in water-logged, alkaline soil with continuous cold draughts irritating their tender stems.

2. Water
Water is not a sustainable resource. But one of the key elements that turns drooping pansies into a flowery mass of colour is water. Whilst your neighbour’s lawn and borders become ever more parched during a drought, carry on watering your luscious blooms with water butts catching rain from all your down pipes.

3. Remove pesky weeds as soon as they pop their heads above the soil
They are a nuisance. They are everywhere. One minute, it is a tiny head, just popping above the soil surface. Next thing, they are running rampant across flower beds, anywhere they can get enough of a foothold with their shallow roots. Weeds are not a gardener’s friend. But the good news is that it takes only a few minutes to whip these pesky weeds out of the soil before they not only get a chance to become established, but turn to seed and spread across your entire garden.

4. Complimentary accessories
Many people are used to thinking of gardens as place to be admired – from the house. They look out, admire the dancing blooms in the summer breeze and yet, spend little time actually enjoying the fruits of your gardening labours. But gardens can be made comfortable enough for everyone to enjoy, and at any time, not just until daylight fades and the temperature drops. Make your neighbours green with envy with not only beautiful plants, but fantastic accessories;

  • Garden seating – from a practical garden bench to functional outside sofas, there are all kinds of options when it comes to garden furniture that suit all tastes and budgets.
  • Rugs, throws and cushions – ramp up the style and add splashes of fantastic colour with rugs, throws and cushions made from special material for the outdoors, which won’t fade, shrink or spoil in the occasional rain shower or bright, bleaching sunshine.
  • Lighting – solar lighting has come on leaps and bounds since the first dim, last-no-more-than-30-minutes solar powered fairy lights from decades ago. There are all kinds of solar lights that make for a bright, romantic garden when the sun drops.
  • Water – gentle running water caresses the soul. After a busy day at the office, talk a walk in the garden and sit by your water feature, enjoying its soothing tones as water trickles down, playing its soul-soothing tune. Or build a full-scale pond and welcome a whole new raft of wildlife in your garden.

5. Plant in pots
Planting in pots is the perfect way to add colour, form and texture to a garden, softening corners and adding interest. Keep garden pots of similar colours and shades to get a coherent colour palette running through the garden. Take time to consider the plants you will use in these pots too. Potted plants will need a little more attention, including a daily water (twice daily if the summer is hot) and bedding plants should be regularly dead headed to keep them putting their energy into flowering and not making seeds.

Rattan Direct have a range of garden accessories and furniture, perfect for dressing your garden and accentuating its glorious plants and design.

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post.

How To Protect Garden Wildlife This Winter

As the weather turns colder, the trees grow bare and frost lays on the ground, it is time to start thinking about how to protect the wildlife in our garden this winter. The main thing we can do is provide safe shelter and food. One of the simplest things that anyone can do is to let grass and hedges grow long and wild over winter. This provides a natural place for a variety of wildlife to hide. But there are also lots of other ways we can help too.

For example, we spotted this hedgehog hideaway at a local garden centre recently, which we thought was a great idea! However, if you do see a hedgehog out during winter when they should be hibernating, it is best to contact your local hedgehog hospital or other experts for advice.

garden centre, protecting wildlife, winter, Rattan Direct

Another popular idea is a bird house or feeder. Squiggle attempted her own DIY version; it is rather on the large side but a very interesting design and all her own work of course! She is going to try making a smaller feeder next, using a carton with entrance hole cut out and stick perch. I’ll post the results when it’s done! Remember to keep bird feeders away from anywhere that predators can easily reach them, but still near shelter if possible.

Bird feeder, protecting wildlife, winter, Rattan Direct

For our tiny members of wildlife, we have a couple of thick logs in an overgrown section of our garden. They provide a great place to hide during anytime of the year, but it is especially helpful in the winter months.

On the subject of wildlife, Rattan Direct are holding a wildlife photography competition and currently have a poll running to choose your favourite photograph from the final selection. There are some really interesting, and cute, pictures included. I have picked my favourite one, but I will let you look and decide for yourselves of course! The poll is here:

http://www.rattandirect.co.uk/blog/wildlife-competition-poll/

I’m looking forward to finding out the winner, it was a tough choice! In the meantime, remember those tips for keeping a wildlife-friendly garden this winter, and do let me know if you have any other suggestions too. Stay wild everyone!

This is a sponsored post written in collaboration with Rattan Direct.

Stay Wild- Virtual Flashmob: A Rainbow of Colours

30 Days Wild by The Wildlife Trusts just announced a virtual ‘flashmob’ to help us all stay wild! Run outside right now, do something ‘wild’ and take a photo or video clip then share it online. So I grabbed my phone, went into the garden and looked for a rainbow of colours…

It didn’t take long at all; there are so many colours in our natural environment, even just in a small garden. The only struggle was blue; the british ‘summer’ let me down abit there, as there was practically all cloud and no blue sky, so I tried to get the tiny glimmer of blue there was and failed! But a fun challenge nonetheless! #StayWild

June Round-Up

Aside from our 30 Days Wild adventures, here are some of the other things we got up to in June…

Played games, indoors and outside…

We had lots of other garden fun too, such as painting with water…

Put on shows with her toys…

Blowing bubbles, and quality time with our pets…

Squiggle also enjoyed celebrating a friend’s birthday…

These are pictures of them celebrating together that she drew for her as a present…

She also wrote a poem about cats…

We had a lovely time at Oaklands College fun day…

She then acted it out the next day at home…

Squiggle’s love of Sylvanian families is well known! She spends alot of time using them for imaginative play; such as pretending they are on holiday at Haven, going to buy ice creams, visiting Peter Rabbit’s adventure playground and at the sylvanian families Whitchurch event meeting sylvanian characters and wearing sylvanian hats like the ones she got! Cute…

She also built them an excellent tree house independently…

Other creative activities included scratch art…

And bubble art…

She did some fun science experiments (details to follow on a separate post!)…

And we also got some cool new hexbug stuff to explore…

Lastly, she had some sensory (and therapeutic!) fun splashing around in water…

30 Days Wild – Day 26: A Different Kind of ‘Wild’

Squiggle enjoyed this ‘wild’ crocodile bouncy castle slide at Larks in the Parks today…

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She also took this photo earlier on today because she loves that the thistle now nearly reaches the top of our 5ft fence! (Hopefully our neighbours share her enthusiasm!!!)

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She was also very excited to see that a radish is starting to grow…

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There are so many different ways to celebrate 30 Days Wild, it’s fantastic!

30 Days Wild – Day 21: Urban Nature

Squiggle captured the following photos on our walk home from music class. It is actually very urban surroundings; concrete pavements alongside busy roads, walking past nothing but houses, shops and company buildings. I really love that she seeks out and spots the hidden nature regardless…

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Our garden has been left to grow freely all this month and is now looking very wild! As I sat earlier, watching various insects and other wildlife going about their business, I felt rather disappointed that at some point it will have to be cut again- it’s their home! But it’s lovely to sit in the long grass and quietly watch and enjoy the nature all around. Here is how it looks now…

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And in honour of insect week (day 2)…

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30 Days Wild – Day 14: Puddle Jumping

“Don’t wait for the storm to pass, learn to dance in the rain.”

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Today has been a very wet day. So we danced in the rain and jumped in puddles. So much fun! There is something wonderful about being outside it the pouring rain- it is so refreshing and somehow freeing too- no one to tell me to get inside, or to put on a coat, or use an umbrella!

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Squiggle also took some beautiful photos in our garden too…

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30 Days Wild- Day 13: Nature Alphabet Hunt

Can you find something beginning with every letter in 5 minutes? We found half the alphabet, can you beat us?!

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Also, remember #WorldMeatFreeDay is today! What are you having for dinner?

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30 Days Wild- Day 11: Good Energy

Today we have been mainly inside working on other projects, but I did spend some time looking through my nature photos, taking action to support conservation and environmental campaigns, and also shared on social media my recent switch to clean energy supplier Good Energy. So I guess I did more today that links in with 30 Days Wild than perhaps I realised!

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If anyone (UK) would like to switch to Good Energy then please do get in touch with me first, so I can refer you to them. For more information please see their website www.goodenergy.co.uk

Squiggle also went outside this morning to practice yoga in the garden again.

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Tree position