How about a country walk this morning?

Good morning... or afternoon, or evening depending on where you are in the world.
I decided this morning that Muffy and I should stretch our legs.
I know that's a little difficult for Muffy, with being so near to the ground
(virtually challenged shall we say) 
but when she's up for it, she certainly can walk.
So instead of the park as usual this morning, we heading out into the country lanes.
Would you like to join us...?
The fresh gusty wind was playing with the clouds... chasing their shadows across the fields.
The birds were also having great difficulty navigating, with gusts blowing them off course and whether they wanted to or not, making spectacular acrobatic displays.
The gorse is stunning at the moment and I'm sure there wasn't this much around at this time last year. 
It's bright yellow floral display is quite a delight whilst we wait for the sun to return.
I remember someone asked on a previous post what gorse actually was but unfortunately I've forgotten who asked! 
I know it's an age thing.
Here's a few facts about gorse for those that aren't familiar with the thorny evergreen.
The flowers have fantastic yellow flowers that have a distinctive coconut smell.
It likes banks, heaths and sea-cliffs although at the moment it appears to be everywhere I look.
Folklore says you should only kiss your beloved when gorse is in flower. 
The good news is that it is pretty much in bloom at any time of year! 
But the peak time for the vibrant yellow blooms is April and May.
This photo might give you some idea of how strong the wind was... I even had to hold onto my hat!
One advantage for Muffy being so low down to the ground, is that she was tucked away behind the granite walls for much of the time, so out of the strong wind... otherwise with her being off lead she might have been the first dog to fly!
Does anyone else remember playing as a child with dandelions? 
We would shout and chant "wet the bed... wet the bed" if anyone picked one and on a more friendly note, we would use the seedlings to tell the time singing the rhyme... one-o-clock, two-o-clock...etc etc... whilst blowing the seeds from the stem.
Just another little fact... did you know that a seed can be carried as many as five miles from their origin.
It also has the longest flowering season of any plant! 
No wonder I can't clear them out of my garden.

It was lovely to have you join me this morning... I hope you enjoyed it.
I thought I've shown you enough of my garden and some of the plants within it
(see my Instagram feed in my sidebar if you don't use Instagram) 
so I thought it was a good idea to expand and go further afield, quite literally.

Well, I'm off now to tackle those dandelions and other weeds.
(whispering voice... the sun's shining!!!)
Have a wonderful Wednesday... enjoy!
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Muffy's morning mishap!

Who knew when we headed off for our morning walk that we would have heart-stopping drama!

Back in January 2012 (Friday 13th to be precise) Muffin took her first swimming lesson, but who would have thought it would be three whole years before she entered the water once again.
Don't get me wrong she is bathed reguarly, groomed at the salon but not the fully immersing kind of bathtime. 
Well today we participated in swimming lesson number two, but there's certainly no need for a third! 
Let me tell you what happened...

She was having her usual fun... sniffing, splashing and generally surveying the whole park for fellow pups and play pals. On our way back to the car she still wanted to play and meet potential pals and spotted a sheep dog playing with it's ball. 
Between you and me he wasn't interested in Muffy at all 
(don't tell her but he was a little ball obsessive if you ask me) 
but that didn't seem to register or deter Muffy. 
As I called for her to follow me to the car... her off leish walk was over... she had other ideas.
She ran full pelt down the embankment with eyes latched onto the other pup. 
Over the pathway and totally deaf to my calls. 
The trouble was that the other dog was on the other side of the boating lake!
To my horror she then launched herself over the concrete low wall that edged the boating lake... 
are you still with me...? 
...yep you guessed it. 
In she went... BADOOSH!!!
Not quite a swallow dive but it certainly was impressive. 
She obviously thought it was solid ground and I'm still chuckling to myself when I think about what must have gone through her mind...
"WHAT THE ......????"
 As I ran to her I thought to myself she'll never come back up...
(not if our first swimming lesson was anything to go by) 
So I'm thinking I'm going in... willing to sacrificing my boots for sure. 
(The lake isn't very deep but quite deep enough for a mini shuh tzu)
But amazingly as I came nearer... up she popped and she began to swim like an olympian! 
Her coat plus her harness wasn't going to stop her.
I watched in wonder as she about turned and headed back towards me. 
Paws paddling profusely
Who would have guessed? 
After grabbing her and lifting her out looking like a soggy chamois leather, I couldn't help thinking (once I knew she was okay) that I'd have loved to have taken a little video of it all. 
As you can see by her face above, she wouldn't have been impressed. 
"Just get me dry and warm" ^..^
Once back home and dried off with a warm hairdryer (as you do) we couldn't let this momentus occasion go without a little pomp and ceremony, so she's been presented with her own swimming certificate! 
If I'm honest she did qualify for all of the criteria... well all except the 15 metre swim, but if we consider the way out, turn around and then back towards the bank, it might well have been 15 metres.
Here's the certificate and Muffy having a much needed snoozlet, next to the fire after all that excitment.
If you haven't seen her first swimming attempt then here it is...
Note the back legs don't move!

Now you can see why I was so worried when she dived in... 
I definitely thought... glug glug...glug! 
I hope that's given you a giggle and that your day is going swimmingly (sorry I couldn't resist)

I'm linking up with
 Our World Tuesday
Wednesday Around the World

Have a great week and hopefully I'll see you again soon