Hello! I'm sorry to say that my blogging contributions of late have been slightly non-existent - eek! Instead of completely finishing school after exams, my year-group has had a series of activity days - some, such as salsa dancing leaving me too physically tired to sit at the laptop and come up with a post, and some, such as a politics talk led by a panel of MSPs leaving me too mentally tired to even think about it! haha
I thought I'd get back into the swing of things by inviting you to take a look at what I've been up to! Today led by a small team of Rangers, we were led up a hill to pull up Himalayan Balsam - an invasive plant species which threatens the Scottish ecological environment. It came from the Western Himalayas (oh, really?!) and was brought over to Scotland in 1839 (silly Victorians!)
The species has a reputation of being unstoppable in its rapid spreading methods, and so needs persistent control or it easily takes over the landscape - and growing up to 3 metres tall it swamps its shorter neighbours.
...I could keep discussing the nature of the Himalayan Balsam, but as this is a beauty and lifestyle blog I think I shall keep the biology lectures to a minimum! haha
So.. Several hours over the course of the day were dedicated to some extreme gardening! There were nettles everywhere, and the balsam seemed to grow mostly in amongst the gorse bushes! Rather unsympathetic to our scratches and stings, our ranger insisted on very thorough balsam clearing! To our misfortune, breaks were on the low, and our excuses that we had to sit up in the trees to best spot the balsam refused! However, I'm very proud of our efforts. That was a lot of clearing accomplished! As the plant (in its current pre-flowering stage) only needs to be pulled out the ground and broken up with hands or feet before being allowed to decompose naturally on the hill, balsam fights were rife, and everyone had to watch themselves from the flying missiles as others uprooted them and threw them in the general direction of the path! We all got covered in a lot of soil in this process
In need of a break, we escaped for lunch - one of the perks of having friends who can drive. Yet still we went around in circles for the first half of our allocated lunch time, resulting in a rather late return..
|Me & one of my best friends. I'm on the right|
As the wandering through the semi-wilderness continued, the volume of Himalayan Balsam actually decreased! Leading me and my friends to get pre-occupied appreciating the other wildlife, like this fox-glove! Did you know that fox-gloves are poisonous? Well.. they are. They have a chemical in them which in significant quantities can stop your heart! We were informed of this when one of my friends, pictured with me two above put one in her mouth for a photo haha.
In need of some adventure, we escaped the Balsam reaping for a short while, and came down to a river where we met a dog walker and around six or seven over-excited dogs! Soon after this the day's activities was over, and we were given permission to head home, safe in the knowledge that hundreds of stalks of Himalayan Balsam had been uprooted today.
I thought I should share a quick outfit of the day! From feet upwards, I'm wearing some winter boots from Barratts (before they shut down), leggings which were from South, but I really don't like them and they have a hole in one of the knees, a very thin shift summer dress from H&M's 2011 summer collection, a thin black mac from Joe Brown's, and my Van's school bag. On my nails I'm wearing MaxFactor nailpolish in Meteorite, with a coat of Topshop's holographic polish Razzmatazz on top.
Face of the day (much worn off through excessive Balsam uprooting!) : Revlon Photo-Ready foundation in the shade Shell, Loreal Paris Infalliable Concealer in shade 4, Boots 17 animal bronzer, Maybelline Dream Touch Blush in Plum, No7 Skin Illuminator in Pink, Natural Collection Pressed Powder in Neutral, and on my eyes (themed slightly to the day's activities) : Avon True Colour Eyeshadow Duo in Deep Forest, Barry M Liquid Liner in Black, and MaxFactor False Lash Effect Fusion Mascara.
Alrighty! Thank you for reading this post, and I hope your day was both as productive and hilarious as mine! This is my last blog post whilst at the tender age of 17... tomorrow is my birthday! I shall blog about it at the weekend, so be prepared for some lifestyle posts! I also aim to do a couple of reviews on beauty products that have featured in previous hauls.
Have a lovely day