All three cats (We now have three, as we kept one of Katie's kittens) appear to have discovered the joy of snoozing whilst basking in pools of warm sunlight, in various places in and around the house and garden. Oh, the joys of Spring being sprung and the days being warmer!
Gumboots...raincoats... beanies....gloves.... bed socks....flannelette sheets and pyjamas were all used regularly here during the winter. Yet now that Spring has truly sprung, going barefoot and wearing lighter, shorted sleeved clothing are being embraced happily more and more by household members.
However, the unsettledness of the weather which still exists at times, has made noone particularly keen yet to suggest a complete seasonal change over - so polar fleece sweatshirts and flannelette sheets, and the like, are still on-hand.
Still, it is officially truly Springtime here in Aotearoa New Zealand, with Summer not too far away also.
The numerous fruit trees about our backyard garden have now fully gone through their cycle of leaf buds breaking out into vibrant green, fresh new leaves.
In turn, we witnessed the arrival of actual flowering blossom. The visual results of Spring having sprung in the backyard garden, some of which you can see in the attached photographs, are such eye catching contrasts to the terribly starkness we experienced in Winter.
I have been keenly watching to see how the fig tree and grapevine do, and to date they are doing well, which is wonderful.
It was with gleeful excitement I recently noticed a huge amount of blossom in the process of opening on the feijoas trees. The copious amount of manure that was applied around them has seemed to make a difference this year. Yippee!
The peach tree, which was subjected to something of a substantial pruning, is quite laden with small green peaches. If all goes well, we are going to have quite a bountiful summer harvest in the backyard this year, which would be so lovely.
Our banana palm, which once again looks so awfully bedraggled after another round again of our typical harsh frosts, has a couple of actual offspring banana palm pups growing under it's wing. May they each grow and getting better established, before the seasons go through one or two changes again.
We shall still have to wait and see again if the actual parent banana palm springs back somewhat more into life over the next little while. When, oh when will we possibly see actual bananas, I keep wondering.
Located where we are in the Northern Waikato Region of New Zealand, we often experience both fog and quite harsh frosts throughout the winter months.
During the past winter the frosts we had were very icy and also quite thick, something akin to a white blanket being laid across both lawn and outdoor feature. It certainly makes you feel cold when you have had to pick ice off and out of bowls of drinking water left outside for various animals!
When you get to experience real evidence that Spring is completely in place, as we do now, it is pretty exciting. It is really nice to see each of the changes that arrive with the changing of the seasons and to sense also that the weather is warming up.
Our ex-battery hens are all looking so much prettier now. Even those few that have not quite got all their plumage back are looking so much more well feathered, than when they first arrived and were re-homed in our backyard garden.
They all absolutely love foraging and free ranging. Every morning they are as-keen-as-can-be to leave the chicken coop and wander out to begin their day's activities. Any time a worm, slug or spider is spotted, it is a quick dive to see who gets it first. As good a treat as chocolate, I am sure they keep wanting to tell us!
We have also added two more rescue hens to our little flock. Lovey and Rosie have been with us now for several months. After a week of everyone looking at each other through a barrier fence, they have all settled down to living well alongside each other and enjoying the extra warmth additional warm feathered bodies offer when they all huddle up in the nesting box at night.
The fund-raiser which we set up for two local single mums was successful. Thanks to everyone that donated, both households received several loads of delivered firewood, once the funds came through from the Givealittle Host Company.
How fantastic it is to know that there are such kind and generous people out there in the world, willing to donate a dollar or two, to make a practical and real difference for someone else and their children, over the cold winter months.
Feathers, fruit and friends. The current spring months, are certainly interesting here in our neck-of-the-woods.
Enjoy the seasonal transitions where you are, folks. They definitely make life interesting.