Tuesday, May 29, 2007

It flies!!

As I thought, the blue tit can now fly. He's gone from one end of the cage to the other a couple of times while I've been watching. Now if I can just persuade him to move towards me when I feed him, I'll be happy.

We're referring to him as "him" for convenience, no idea what sex it actually is!

I mostly seem to call him Fluff, but then I call the dog that too... none of the names we've come up with seem quite right.

While I'm here, Basil is doing okay too. The dead stuff's still there, but the leg looks much better.

Not sure there's much else to tell.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Finally Blogger lets me post pictures... hooray for Picasa!

Doesn't look too happy at being photographed.

Feeding time.

Showing off its perching skills in the cage.

Relaxing after the arduous task of opening its beak while someone puts food in it. Yawn.

As you can see, the little chap's doing well. He/she's eating loads now, begs for food every time I approach the cage. I took it out earlier and had a good look at the wings, the feathers are almost fully developed now, with only a little of that protective covering on the flight feathers. The tail feathers are pretty much the same. Although it can't fly properly yet, it can do a flappy hop onto my hand and it flapped down to the bottom of the cage then climbed up onto a perch (where it then fell asleep, bless). I think it will start flying within the next few days which will be fun!

Rehabilitation-wise, tits need to be hand-fed for 2-3 weeks after they start flying, even though they'll be feeding themselves too. Once this little one starts eating by itself I'll let it out into the orchard during the day and bring it back in at night and feed it throughout the day until it doesn't take food anymore. To help with this I'm training it to come when I call, obviously once it's outside I can't climb up trees to feed it so it will need to come to me!

I'm exhausted after getting up so early yesterday, doing housework all day, entertaining friends and getting to bed at 2am. Then getting up to feed the little one at 6am. Lovely Michael did the next ones though, and let me sleep until 1pm. I feel better for it, though still pretty tired. But it's good for me to have something to do. I dread to think what it would be like to have a baby!

As for names... Michael suggested Sapphire (since it's a blue tit) but says it's it's a bit girly in case it's a boy and thinks the same about my suggestion of Sky. Then he said that we could call it Porno, also because it's blue. Hmm.
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Saturday, May 26, 2007


So I got up at 5am to feed the chick... after sleeping very badly, and waking up often thinking I could hear it calling! And it simply ignored me. Two hours later, it grudgingly accepted a worm.

I'm guessing since I fed it up to after 9pm last night, it's not really hungry yet.

It can take a little persuading to open its beak, I'm experimenting with the best way of doing it but obviously it's used to the parent birds feeding it and I'm not giving the right signals. I'm combining whistling (in poor imitation of the call it makes), "swooping" in with the mealworms in tweezers, moving my fingers just above its head, and tapping the side of its beak. Sometimes it works.

I'm worried, probably unnecessarily, that it isn't eating enough. But I guess if it isn't calling or gaping, it isn't hungry. I'm feeling my way here, since I haven't had any experience with birds, and I'm not having much luck with finding out exactly how much they should eat. The 'net tells me that I should feed as much as it wants, so I probably should stop worrying.

Maybe I'm imagining it, but I'm pretty sure it's different from yesterday. It's a little bigger, slightly less fluffy, and a touch calmer. Not in the least bit frightened of me. Sure is one cute little thing! And today it looks like blue tit. I had an idea it was when I saw it yesterday because of the size (it's really tiny), but Michael said he saw one of the parents go into the nest and he thought it was a great tit. But Michael has been known to be wrong on occasions. ;)

I took the little one out to the roleplaying club last night, since it needed to be fed every 30 mins or so, which sparked some interest. I guess I won't be going out much for a while!

Pics will be posted once Michael gets up and transfers them onto the computer. Oh yeah, and suggestions for a name (unisex) will be gratefully received, since we're all out of inspiration.

UPDATE: It's just taken a record 4 worms!!! Yay!

Friday, May 25, 2007

New house guest

Michael found a baby bird at work today, looked as if it had fallen out of the nest and he couldn't put it back (nest's too high up).

The bird has feathers, but its wing feathers aren't developed enough to fly. There was another chick near it but that one was dead, poor thing.

Anyway, he brought it home and we're hand feeding it. I've thought that maybe he shouldn't have taken it, maybe it is old enough to leave the nest and maybe the parents were feeding it. But it's done now, although to be honest I don't think it's ready to leave the nest.

From what I've read, once babies get their feathers they start to sit up "on their hocks", then once they're older they perch properly. This one's sitting rather than perching. It did grip onto my fingers when I moved it into the tissue nest I made for it.

It's either a blue tit or a great tit. We're currently feeding it on mealworms (I have to crush the heads of the worms, yuk), about every 30 minutes or whenever it calls, during the day. Looks like I'll have to be up early to start feeding again.

I'll post some pictures tomorrow. Plus I have other stuff to tell.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Birds, boxes and unnecessary silliness

So 6am this morning (I haven't even been to bed) I was in the utility room looking out onto the orchard. I watched the birds for a while. Starlings and sparrows with juveniles, baby dunnocks and robins, blue tits, great tits, coal tits, blackbirds and jackdaws. Very relaxing watching them, almost made me forget feeling tired for once.

And I noticed a couple of great tits seemed to head to the feeders from one of the apple trees, always the same place, the place where there's a nest box attached to the tree.

So I kept an eye on them, and they're definitely feeding chicks in there! The first birds using one of my boxes. :) Yay!! I'm not sure how I didn't notice it before, but I'm looking forward to seeing the little yellow chicks when they fledge!

While I'm here I thought I'd mention that we don't call them great tits in this house. They are great tooths. It all started when I accidentally said Bluetooth instead of blue tit, and the name stuck - now quite a few birds are something-tooths, like coal tooths, gold tooths, green tooths. It's very silly. Also for no reasons, sparrows are spugs, starlings are storks, crows are croaks. It can be a bit confusing.

Monday, May 21, 2007

The famous lavender cake recipe!

This is the cake that I have the most requests for. It's not actually my recipe - I found it on Allrecipes (fantastic site by the way, with a very useful ingredient search function), submitted by Judi. It's technically a tea bread, but it's so like a cake I just call it a cake! Besides, few people know what a tea bread actually is, and assume it's something you'd make a cheese sandwich with.

180 ml milk
3 tbs finely chopped fresh lavender leaves (it looks like a LOT of lavender but the flavour is fantastic)
85 g butter or margarine, softened
200 g white sugar
2 eggs
250 g self-raising flour
Pinch of salt

1) Preheat the oven to 165C/325F. Grease and flour a 9x5 inch loaf pan.
2) Combine the milk and lavender in a small saucepan over medium heat. Heat to a simmer, then remove from heat, and allow to cool slightly.
3) Cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in the egg until the mixture is light and fluffy.
4) Combine the flour and salt; stir into the creamed mixture alternately with the milk and lavender until just blended. Pour into the prepared pan.

5) Bake for 50 minutes in the preheated oven, or until a skewer inserted into the crown of the loaf comes out clean. Cool in the pan on a wire rack.

If I make this for myself I don't bother to ice it because it's already quite moist and sweet, but if I make it for a special occasion I'll add some kind of topping. I never seem to make the same one twice! This one works very well.

Mix 100g of cream cheese in a bowl until smooth. Add 50g of softened butter and 1tsp of vanilla extract and blend well. Pass 3tbs of strawberry or raspberry jam through a sieve into the mixture and stir in. Sweeten to taste with icing sugar or granulated sweetener (I prefer Splenda). The icing will be on the runny side - just spread it out on the top of the cake and let it drizzle down over the sides. Tell yourself it looks rustic. ;)

Prepare for some funny looks when you tell people it's lavender cake. Until they taste it, that is. I've never known anyone taste it and say they didn't like it. Seriously.

Actually I'm completely in love with lavender. It looks great, smells gorgeous and tastes fantastic. I love it in cakes, biscuits/cookies, scones, as a jelly, and strangely enough, with chicken (I'll post my very simple lavender chicken recipe soon). I don't understand why my mum hates lavender, it actually makes her feel sick. Bizarre.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Chocolate leaf cake

I went out for a meal with the guys from Socii last night, which was really nice. I made a special chocolate cake to say thanks to Harriet for all her hard work this year, and we then proceeded to make pigs of ourselves with it.

I'd seen a picture of chocolate leaves in a cake book a while ago, and thought they looked cool, so it was a good excuse for me to have a go at making them. The recipe that went along with it was awful though, it took ages and came out really rubbery and tasteless, so I used my own chocolate cake recipe instead. It serves 16.

For the cake:
8oz white sugar
8oz margarine/soft butter
4 eggs (large or medium)
2 tsp vanilla essence
6oz self-raising flour
2oz cocoa powder
2 tbs Bailey's or other similar cream liqueur

1) Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6. In a large bowl, cream together margarine and sugar with a wooden spoon until mixture is paler and feels much less "gritty".
2) Beat in the egg yolks and vanilla, then beat in the whites a little at a time. The mixture should end up about the same consistency as before the eggs were added. Bear with it, it's a great workout for the upper arms!
3) Switch to a metal spoon. Sift the flour and cocoa powder together into the mixture, add the Bailey's and fold in very gently until completely combined.
4) Grease a 9-inch round cake tin and spoon the mixture into it. Bake in the middle of the oven for 30 minutes until the middle of the cake springs back when touched, and the sides are starting to come away from the sides of the tin. Remove from tin and cool on a wire rack.

For the filling:
200ml double cream (I use Elmlea, because I can't tell the difference)
200g white chocolate, finely grated
75ml liqueur (raspberry, vanilla, banana, peppermint, orange or toffee flavour would work well, or even more Bailey's - I used raspberry in the cake last night)

1) Whip the cream and liqueur in a bowl until it is thick, but doesn't stand in peaks when you lift the whisk. Another arm workout, unless you have an electric whisk.
2) Fold in the white chocolate. Easy, huh?
3) Once the cake is completely cool, cut it in half horizontally and sandwich the halves together with the filling. Stand the cake on the wire rack with a large plate underneath it.

For the icing:
200ml double cream (see above)
200g plain chocolate

1) Break the chocolate into small pieces and place in a small saucepan with the cream. Heat gently until the chcolate has melted.
2) Stir until well mixed and glossy. Leave to cool and thicken a little.
3) Pour the icing over the top of the cake. It will run down the sides of the cake to cover it, you'll need to encourage it a little with a teaspoon or table knife so every bit of the side is covered.
4) Carefully transfer the cake onto a serving plate.

For the leaves:
75g plain chocolate
75g milk chocolate
25g milk and 50g white chocolate

This is the fun bit.
1) Find some leaves - you'll need about 45 smallish ones. I used a mixture of oak, apple and holly leaves. Rose, mint, geranium, or other fruit trees would be fine. The apple leaves were too thin and tended to tear when I peeled them away from the chocolate. The oak leaves worked perfectly and looked great, and the holly leaves were very fiddly to peel off (peel the corners first if you try them) but did look fantastic.
2) Wash and dry your leaves well.
3) Melt one batch of chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water, or in the microwave (but be careful not to overheat it).
4) Using a small paintbrush, apply a layer of chocolate on the underside of 15 of the leaves. I added another layer once they'd cooled, the chocolate needs to be thick enough not to break when you remove the leaves. Chill in the freezer until set.
5) Repeat with the other batches of chocolate and the remaining leaves.
You could try using the different shades of chocolate to make patterns, dark in the middle and light at the edges makes the leaves look variegated.
6) Carefully peel the leaves away from the chocolate, and gently press the chocolate leaves into the icing of the cake.

It would be rather nice to add some drained canned black cherries or fresh raspberries to the filling of the cake to make it even more special!

Harriet had made certificates for everyone, and presented them last night. Mine was for "Best Cake Baker". I guess my 22 years of baking experience counts for something, anyway. ;) I'm going to miss the guys over the summer, it'll be a long time before we sing together again.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

It's always so hard to think of a title for my posts

Basil's foot doesn't look any worse and the swelling on the leg has gone down a bit. He still isn't eating much, but I'm not really worried about that, as he seems fine in himself.

Our big concert was Saturday night, and only Michael came to see it. My parents were away (admittedly only camping at Clumber Park which isn't very far, they could have driven to Sheffield), my brother thought the concert was in June, Helen had a prior engagement she couldn't get out of, Kaz was at a wedding, Lauren was too tired. No reply from the other friends I contacted. Admittedly I didn't give them much notice, but still... I'm somewhat disappointed that only Michael came to support me. Oh well.

Concert went well anyway, I'll post more about it when I have a bit more time.

This week is Mental Health week. Maybe I'll attempt to make and fly a kite, it looks like fun.

Friday, May 11, 2007

It gets worse

When I checked Basil's foot Wednesday night, it looked okay. The swelling had gone down some and the foot was a more normal colour.

I had a quick look last night when I came in from choir rehearsal, and it's not good.

The foot is black from where the thread was wrapped round down to the toes. It feels dry and hard and dead.

I've made an appointment with my nice vet for this afternoon. I know at least the dead part will have to be amputated, hopefully she won't have to take any more than that. I'm pretty sure the heel pad is okay, so maybe he could get around on that bit. Otherwise it will probably be a full leg amputation, like Rosey.

As usual when something happens to one of my animals, I feel guilty. Even though it's not my fault, and I've saved his life several times in the past.

Poor little guy. Good job I already don't believe in karma or God or anything - what did that hedgehog do to deserve all the bad things that have happened to him?

Jackie (vet) says that the foot still has some feeling, and it's still warm, so hopefully it's just the skin that's dead. The dead bit should slough off by itself, and if the underlying tissue is okay the skin will grow back and he'll be able to get around fine on the heel. Otherwise we're looking at amputation. And she's given him antibiotics (Baytril) because the leg is still pretty swollen.

So better news than I thought. Thank goodness.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Jelly cake!

I've been on a bit of a baking kick recently. I discovered that you can make cake flavoured with jelly (all right, Jell-o if you Americans insist) crystals, which works out rather well. I usually have loads of packets of sugar-free jelly in the cupboard because it's an easy low-cal dessert.

Choir people especially have been begging me for recipes, so I thought I'd start with the jelly one I eventually settled on. It's a simple basic cake mix, it makes 12 buns/small cupcakes. And it's in ounces - I always make cake in imperial measures because it's easier to remember that way, plus it's the way my mother taught me, and her grandmother taught her. Convert it yourself if you need/want to.

4oz granulated white sugar
4oz soft margarine
2 packets of jelly crystals (enough to make 2 pints of jelly)
2 eggs (medium or large)
4oz self-raising flour, sifted
A little milk or fruit juice

1) Cream together the sugar, margarine and jelly crystals with a wooden spoon. Keep going until the mixture is slightly paler, and feels less gritty.

2) Beat in one egg. Keep beating until the mixture is almost as thick as before you added the egg. That might sound a bit odd, but it makes sense when you're doing it. The more air you get into the mixture, the more your cakes will rise and the lighter they'll be. Repeat with the other egg.

3) Sift in the flour, and switch to a metal spoon. Gently fold the flour into the mixture, using the side of the spoon rather than the front or back. I use a figure-of-eight motion. Take your time, if you're rough now you'll lose all the air you beat into it in. Once it's nearly mixed in you'll probably need to add a little liquid - maybe a couple of teaspoons - to get it to a "dropping" consistency, that is it should drop off the spoon with just a little encouragement.

4) Divide the mixture between 12 paper bun cases in a bun tray, and bake in the middle of a preheated oven at 200C/400F/Gas 6 for 15-20 minutes, until lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack. Let them cool completely before you add any toppings.

Flavour suggestions...

Strawberry and raspberry mixed, with a teaspoon of vanilla extract (NOT vanilla essence!) added with the eggs. Top with melted chocolate.
Orange with two teaspoons of mixed spice or cinnamon added with the flour. Top with cream cheese mixed with a little honey, and sprinkle with cinnamon.
Lemon/lime with 1/2 teaspoon of ginger with the flour. Add a cream cheese topping as above.
Blackcurrant with two teaspoons of rum added with the eggs. Mix up a packet of butterscotch or vanilla Angel Delight (pudding mix) with 100ml of milk (and a bit more rum if you like) to make a thick creamy topping.

Damn. Now I've revealed how easy this is, no-one with think I'm great anymore! ;)

More Basil

I was worried about Basil, because he hadn't eaten since I brought him inside Saturday night.

I took his collar off earlier tonight because he obviously wasn't happy with it on, he just sat there under his bedding looking miserable. And I gave him some cooked chicken to try to tempt him.

I've just been in to change his water and he had his nose in the food dish and a chunk of chicken in his mouth. Thank goodness for that.

Hedgehogs do like to worry me. Hopefully he's feeling better though, and won't damage his foot without the collar on. Fingers crossed for him.

Monday, May 07, 2007

The continuing Basil saga

Poor Basil.

Unbeknown to me, there was a loose thread on the piece of old sheet we'd given Basil for bedding when we brought him in. The thread ended up wrapped around one of his back feet, just below the toes, and of course his foot swelled up.

He'd tried to free himself, and bitten off the ends of the two middle toes. I found all this when I went to check on him last night, and then spent two hours trying to cut the thread, while his foot slowly swelled up even more. Eventually we managed to cut the thread with a scalpel, and then the foot started bleeding so the circulation must have been cut off.

The foot and leg still look very swollen today, and there was more blood in the cage so I'm guessing he's been licking/nibbling the foot. I sat him in cold water for half an hour or so to help with the swelling, and I've fitted him with a collar so he can't get to it anymore.

He hasn't eaten and I don't think he had a drink last night either, but he did drink a little of the water I put him in earlier. On the plus side the foot is warm so the circulation wasn't off long enough for the foot to start dying, and he seems quite lively, sniffing at everything. He's been very patient with me messing about with him, except for when I though I was going to drop him and shifted my grip a little too roughly and he bit me. Can't say I blame him.

I'll see how he is tomorrow, if there's any sign of infection I'll have him to the vet.

Poor guy. He's not having an easy time of it.

Our next door neighbours have just offered us their huge rabbit run for use with hogs! It's in two sections with sleeping boxes, so it would be perfect. It's very kind of them. So Basil will have new luxury accomodation when he's well enough to go outside again.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

One funeral, lots of singing and one near-death experience

So I went to Boo's funeral on Friday. It necessitated a trip to Hereford, which involved catching a train at 8.35am, changing at Birmingham and arriving in Hereford at 11.30am. Funeral at 12.

I nearly arsed the whole thing up because my bus was late so I had to run (I say run, I actually mean I ran a little way then walked, then ran again) to the railway station. I don't do running, I'm horribly unfit, but I managed it. Actually I was there 5 minutes before the train was. Bah.

I did have to wait a while at Hereford station. Pete and Nic picked me up from the station, but Pete hadn't got a map of where the station was, because he didn't know I was going until Friday morning. My fault, I'd been so busy with concert and rehearsals that I hadn't confirmed that I would be there. Anyway, we just about got to the crematorium on time.

The service was lovely, very moving. It was sad, but it made me smile to hear all the things she'd achieved. It was also nice to meet her family, and share a few stories and memories of her. I'm glad I went, it's definitely made me feel better.

The hymn was The Lord's My Shepherd, and as I was singing it I couldn't help noticing several things. Firstly, it struck me that hymns are not designed for altos. The highest note in the last line ("The qui-i-et wat-ers by") is a touch high for me when I'm having to sing quietly.

Which leads me into the second - the general public, even if they are regular church-goers, are too self-conscious to sing out. I mean everyone sang, but in a very mumbly quiet way. I was singing pretty softly to try to blend in but I could hear myself above everyone else, apart from the vicar who was loud. It's a shame really. Maybe I don't understand because I've always been confident in my voice, but I think that if you believe in God, when you sing hymns you're singing to him and you shouldn't worry about what other people think of you or what you sound like. Sing out, be proud.

And third, something I notice with songs on the radio. No-one thinks about where to breathe in the song. It's natural to breathe at the end of the (musical) line, or when you run out of breath! But often that doesn't work when you look at how the lyrics form sentences. I'll use The Lord’s my Shepherd as an example.

The Lord’s my Shepherd, I’ll not want.
He makes me down to lie
In pastures green; He leadeth me
The quiet waters by.

If you breathe after want, lie, me and by, the sentences get a bit chopped up and it makes less sense. It sounds like "he makes me lie down", "he leads me in green pastures", and then "the quiet waters by" just tacked on the end for no reason. In my opinion, the breaths should follow the punctuation - after want and green only. Then it means "he makes me lie down in green pastures" and "he leads me by quiet waters".

Maybe I think too much.

It seemed a bit inappropriate to be distracted like that at a funeral, but I can't help it!

I was so tired by Friday night, I just curled up in front of the TV with two hours of The House of Eliott and a double pepperoni pizza.

Saturday I spent all day rehearsing. Our next concert is on the 12th of May - both the main Society Chorus and the smaller Socii Cantorum are performing. Some of the Socii stuff is hard, the Missa Kenya is quite tricky in places, especially the Sanctus. Still, we're on top of it now I think. Harriet made us all move, we weren't allowed to stand next to anyone in our part. I ended up with a soprano one side, and a bass the other. It was really difficult because shamefully I often rely on the other altos to help me when I'm not sure of myself, but it was very useful because I realised that I actually can do it without their help... in fact I sometimes end up going wrong because someone else does, when actually I was right. I just need to be more confident.

I tried to have an early night Saturday, but I was just settling down when Michael told me that our neighbour's two dogs had gotten into our garden again. They are those big hairy mountain dog types, like Newfoundlands or similar. They break through the fence by simply bashing into it. I said I hoped they weren't upsetting Basil, who is in a pen in the garden, and Michael went out to see what was happening, maybe catch them if he could.

When he went out one of them crashed through the hedge back into the garden, with what looked like a football in his mouth. Michael got him to drop it. It wasn't a football, it was a terrified Basil - the dog had smashed through the pen and grabbed him. Michael brough him inside in a box, and we left him alone for a while so he'd uncurl and I could check for injuries. Almost an hour later, and he hadn't relaxed very much and didn't respond to my gentle rocking, so I had to put him in the sink with a little warm water to open him up.

Luckily he seems fine, except for oviously being in shock. He seemed quite stiff in his back legs when he moved, but I guess that's a consequence of being tightly curled for an hour - he probably had a bit of cramp. He's inside now, until we repair and reinforce his outdoor accomodation. Poor prickler, this is the third time we've saved him from death, he's very lucky. If Michael hadn't gone out he'd probably have been left injured or dead somewhere, and we wouldn't have found him.

I'm having a nice quiet day today.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Wow, it's been ages!

I don't have an excuse, I just can't be bothered with blogging recently. Which is a shame, because I do actually enjoy it. Apologies for not keeping up with reading everyone else's blogs too - I actually miss you guys.

In my defense, I can't be bothered with anything much recently. I essentially spend my days reading, watching stuff I've recorded on Sky+ (recently The House of Eliott and My Parents are Aliens) and playing computer games (Zelda on the Wii, Pokemon Colosseum). Oh and feeding the birds mealworms. I'm still singing, in fact singing is the only thing that I'm managing to keep up. Sometimes I go birdwatching, or take the dog out. And I'm bored, but I can't motivate myself to find something interesting to do. I seem to have no mental energy left at all.

Anyway. Here's a quick recap, in bullet point form, in no particular order.

* We have a new kitchen. It's really nice. I'll post pictures later. We still need to tile the walls, and put a floor in, then we can decorate and it will be finished.
* My chinchillas died. We put a big cardboard tube in the cage for them to chew on, unfortunately it fell over and trapped the two of them inside. It's taken weeks for me to even be able to post about it, mostly because I feel horribly guilty that it was my fault (even though obviously I didn't mean to hurt them, I just didn't think). I miss those little guys. I cried a lot.
* Holly and Ivy (my two hedgehog guests) went back to the garden they came from. They'll be properly released within the next week or so - they are big girls now and more than ready to lead a natural wild life.
* My friend Boo died. I posted in my other blog about her so I won't repeat myself here, but she was a wonderful woman who I met through the hedgehog forums and Yahoo Messenger chat. I miss her too.
* "My" robin (imaginatively named Mr Robin) built a nest with Mrs Robin in one of my conifer trees. They hatched four chicks, which fledged a couple of weeks ago and are hanging around most of the time waiting for me to put more mealworms out! And the parents have another brood now which judging my the amount of food Mr Robin is taking to them, won't be long before they fledge. I like that I'm making all their lives easier by providing loads of worms.
* Mr Robin will now land on my hand to take worms. He's a bit flicky and nervous about it, but doesn't hesitate when I put my hand out. Also two of the fledglings come to my hand too - one's nervous and the other is very relaxed about it and will actually stand on my hand while I put more worms on it with my other hand. Bless them, they are gorgeous.
* Two of my choirs have a concert on 12 May. Andrew Carter's Benedicite, Paul Basler's Missa Kenya and Karl Jenkins's The Armed Man. I really like the Benedicite, can't say I'm over keen on the others. Should be fun to sing though. Andew Carter's actually coming to work with us in our rehearsal tomorrow night - the man's a legend.
* Ladies' Choir have a concert tonight. Some poems by Wordsworth, Tennyson, etc, set to music by Harriet's dad, Stuart Johnson. They are pretty.

I'm sure there are more things I wanted to tell, but I can't think of them right now.

Oh, just wanted to do a quick plug for my brother's band, Turning Hollow. Here's their MySpace page. I'm going to do vocals for them, maybe even do some gigs with them!

Later guys.