Thursday, 12 January 2012

New Beginnings.

During the last few months of 2011 much of my time was taken up assisting my parents so blogging had to take a back seat.  My father's deteriorating  health and mobility problems eventually necessitated the amputation of his right leg (above the knee) but for an 87 year old everyone has been amazed by his recovery to date although daily life in a wheelchair is no fun for someone who was so active. He is so determined to walk again and following an assessment today at Roehampton he has just told me there is GOOD news .... they have agreed to make him an artificial leg and will teach him to walk again. A you might guess, he is delighted and ready for this new lease of life.

To celebrate here are are a few images of new life that I have seen over the past few days.

The garden is currently awash with the nodding white lanterns of Leucojums ...... in fact two clumps have been in flower since mid December .... the earliest I have ever known them to flower here.

Other garden delights include the Muscari, one Narcissus already in full bloom, the clusters of dark red buds on the Skimmia 'Rubella' plus a very early bud on a potted Exochorda 'The Bride' (Pearl Bush).

Many of the Helleborus orientalis hybrids are nearly ready to show their colourful faces and I found one already lifting itself towards the sunlight. I have no doubt that the forecated easterly winds and drop in temperature will slow down much of the early growth.

Finally a very young Fallow Deer gave me a very inquiring stare during a walk in the park last week.

It will take me some time to catch up with everyone but in the meantime enjoy your wildlife watching.  FAB.


  1. Welcome back Frank. Sorry to hear about your father. It sounds as though he has the spirit to soldier on and if Roehampton says yes he will have a good job done. Best wishes to him.

  2. ...glad to hear your father has come through his surgery fighting. I bet he will be walking soon. Is he a birder like you?

    I always forget your spring starts much earlier than ours. What a surprise to see blooming flowers! We've had a mild winter, but the snow arrived today... Glad you're back!

  3. Thanks Mike. He is very determined so the good news will give him a lift over the coming weeks.

  4. Hi Frank ...I saw you on my list and gasped ..oh my goodness Frank is back!! lol
    Sorry to hear about you Dad's problems but the man has an amazing will..that is wonderful!!
    The garden flowers are lovely to see..I missed your flowers : }
    Snow here today ..the ground has been bare for weeks..we where spoiled!!
    Happy to hear from you

  5. frank! so good to hear from you again! i knew you were helping your parents, but have thought of you several times over the months and hoped all was well. glad to hear your father has some freedom to look forward to!

  6. Hi Kelly. He has numerous appointments for fitting and training so the next few weeks will be tough but he is determined to succeed.

    He enjoys watching his garden birds but his main interest was always wild flowers. When I took him to the coast last winter and located a group of Avocet and various other waders he finally admitted that he understood my passion!

    In contrast to last winter it has been very mild over here but the wind and weather is now on its way from the east so all change in the next 24 hours.

  7. Thank you Grace. It's good to be back.

    Hi Teresa. Thanks for thinking of us.

    I'll drop in to see what you have both been up to very soon.
    Cheers FAB.

  8. Hey, welcome back! I hope your dad is back on his feet real soon.

  9. How nice to see spring flowers in your garden. It's full blown winter here in Canada and our snowdrops won't put in an appearance until early April. Then the hyacinth, daffys and the rest.

    You Dad sounds like a strong man and I'm glad he's on the mend. You're so lucky to still have your parents.

    Love that last pic - such a sweet little deer.

  10. Nice to see you! Am so pleased to learn of your father's tenacity!! How wonderful for someone his age. You must be so pleased.

  11. Gorgeous images Frank. And I'm so glad your Dad is doing better and will be able to walk again someday soon. That's fantastic. It's so good to have you back. Carol

  12. Hi Frank,

    It's so good to see you. I hope your Dad does well with his artificial leg. My Mother had both legs amputated about four years apart. There was quite an adjustment, but she did quite well under the circumstances.

    You have flowers? How wonderful! We don't have anything here at all yet. The little deer is darling.

    All the best,

  13. Welcome back! I hope your father does well. Your photos are beautiful today.

  14. Frank, good to see you back my friend.

    Here's wishing all the best to your dad. He sounds like a great fighter.

  15. Dear Frank,

    Your father has great courage, and I have great respect for him.
    I am sure with family support he will walk again. I shall hold him in my thoughts and prayers....bless him.

    Beautiful images of your garden flowers.....I am glad the weather has cooled a little this morning. Things were galloping, it needed a chill to slow things down {:)

  16. Hi Frank, I have been missing your posts and am so glad to see you back with your blog.
    Your father's recovery is really amazing at his age and I wish him well.
    We just had our first snow storm of the year and to see your flowers blooming in January is awesome!

  17. Welcome back Frank and welcome news about your father. What a testament of a beloved father, son, family as well as the strength of his spirit, his age and a hearts desire to do what had come natural...He will surprise everyone. The images are all just marvelous Frank~

  18. Hi Frank Welcome back
    Fabulous set of images, and glad to hear that your father is making great progress.
    About our E Mail conversation all seems to be fine now.

  19. Thanks Steve. We are all keeping our fingers crossed that his progress to date continues.

    Hi Wendy. Our Snowdrops are just above ground at the moment so hopefully I can share some pics to keep you going until spring arrives in Canada.

    Thanks Karen. We are all delighted as a few months ago it was touch and go as to whether he would make the year out!

    Hi Carol. Thanks very much.

    Hi Lois. Yes, a very drastic life adjustment for someone of his age.

    Thank you Mona.

    Cheers Keith. Thanks for the help with the little 'problem'.

  20. Hi Cheryl. Thanks and I'll be sure to pass on your best wishes.

    Hi Hilke. The winter here is totally different to last year so everything is way ahead of itself although the weather pattern is set to change to much colder ... but still no snow...yet!!

    Hi Mary. They built them tough in the 20's so we are all hopeful that he will achieve his aims.

    Hi Monty. Cheers and thanks for your help today.

  21. Frank, I am so glad you are back blogging again! I missed viewing your wonderful posts.

    I'm glad to hear that your father is doing well and will have the ability to walk again. Good for him! My thoughts are with him.

    What a lovely post so full of color and beauty! How nice it is for me to see blooms as the Chicago area is now covered with a thick blanket of white snow (8 inches). Your photographs are delicate and stunning!

    Take care!

  22. Hi Frank.. It's lovely to see you back posting and great to hear your Dad is doing well.
    Take care and I hope 2012 is kind to you.

  23. Hi Frank and great to have you back in circulation again - exciting and good news about your father and what determination....

    I'm now down in if you're coming Pulborough way at any time....

  24. Nice to see you back, hope 2012 is a better year for you and your family. Lovely shot of the Fallow Deer :-)

  25. That is good and positive news about your father Frank.

  26. Hi Julie. Thank you for the kind compliments. BTW I enjoyed reviewing the wildlife from your warm and sunny trip to Florida.

    Thanks Andrew. Best wishes to you as well.

  27. Admiring the strong & wonderful spirit of life your Dad has got; I wish him all my very, very best wishes for a quick recovery !!!!

    All my very best aUGURI, rank!

    ciao ciao elvira

  28. Thanks Elvira. He has a tough few weeks ahead and I'm keeping my fingers crossed for a satisfactory outcome. ciao ciao FAB.

  29. Welcome back Frank. So sorry to hear about your Dad but hooray for him also. He is so brave. I cannot believe you have flowers blooming already! On this snowy evening, it gives me hope in my heart to see them!


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