Thursday, 29 September 2016

George the Teenager

Well, its been thirteen years in the making but the day arrived on the 8th August this year. (I'm a little bit late with this post!).  My first born's first born became a teenager!  Surely, it hasn't been thirteen years since the apple of  my eye entered the world!

But yep, it has.  Look at him.  He is a teenager.  Look at those beautiful big green eyes.

Look at that cheeky smile.

And look how handsome he is with that dimple in his chin.

Even so, he's still just a kid to me.  It doesn't matter that he's as tall, if not taller, than I am. He's getting taller by the day too. I don't reach down to give give him a hug any more.  His arms don't go round my middle any more.  They go over my shoulders now.  

 The first of my three little treasures and I love him to bits and always will.  Full stop.

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Blackberrying Along by the Canal

A couple of weeks ago now, during our walks along the local canal William had commented several times on how many blackberries there were on this stretch of the canal and that we needed to pick some.  He's partial you see to apple and blackberry pie and crumble.  So we decided we'd go blackberrying and after telling Charlie what rich pickings there would be he was up for it and eager to come with us and find himself some whoppers.

However, Charlie's excitement was short-lived and disappointment was beginning to set in. He wanted to fill his tub in the first few minutes but we had some walking to do before we would find any worth picking.

It took just a little bit of encouragement for him to carry on...

...and it wasn't long before he found a few of those wanted whoppers

Soon it was going well and the tubs began to fill up.

Unfortunately blackberrying isn't without its hazards.  At one stage Charlie reached into and under a bush and stuck his hand into a pile of nettles.  Ouch!

The fluffy clouds reflected on the water were picture perfect I thought.

Still going well.  I think this photo looks very autumnal.

Billy's tub was practically overflowing!  I have to say he collected the most.

On the way back now but it's difficult to stop picking blackberries once you start.  There's always just another bunch of them that catches your eye.

And one last whopper.  Look at this one, grandad!

Lots of Canada Geese.  There's always a gaggle of them here.

Halfway back to the car and a little breather was taken.  This is one of those photos that just pleases me.  Don't know why in particular that it pleases me.  It just does.

A couple of days later I made the pie and the crumble and there's still half a tub of blackberries in the freezer.

Sunday, 21 August 2016

An Afternoon on Rhosneigr Beach, Anglesey.

Back toward the end of May Victoria suggested a day out to Anglesey.  In particular Rhosneigr.  The boys and their dad all have bodyboards and Rhosneigr had been recommended as having the waves needed to use them.  Nicholas was particularly keen for this trip.  For his birthday in April he got a surf board and wanted to use it.

None of us had ever been to Rhosneigr before so it was all new.  We didn't know the best way to the beach so we parked up and followed a likely looking path to the beach.  We soon found out it wasn't the best path. This path took us up and over those sand dunes you can see.  

When we got closer they loomed big, wide and hilly... but manageable... and fun... kind of. Happily the view the other side of them made the trek worthwhile.  Plus it was a sunny, blue sky day.  Perfect for a day on the beach.

Nicholas with one of the body boards while he waits for his surfboard to be ready.

Gary got it sorted.

And then they were off!

And doing what they came for.  All three of the boys doing their thing.

Behind a laughing Gary, Nicholas is to the left of him and George to the right.  

George tried the surf board too.

It's a shame George is missing from this pic but just over there in the background on the right is William sitting reading the paper with all the picnic stuff around  him.

As with all good things, they come to an end and all too soon it was time to pack up and make our way back to the car.  Thankfully by an easier route than we had taken on the way in. William, above, was loaded up to the gills while Nicholas carried just his crocs.  To be fair to Nicholas he had tried to help by carrying one of the fold up chairs but it kept falling out of its bag and was more trouble than it was worth to have him carry the thing, so grandad got to carry that too.

William took a well earned breather while the van was packed up.

We had had a lovely afternoon.  There had been fun in the water, a picnic on a beautiful beach, sunshine and fresh sea air. Not bad for a day in May in Great Britain.

Until next time,

Saturday, 13 August 2016

Who's a Good Boy?

Sadly, England isn’t known for its good weather and this summer our weather has been very mixed.  Mixed as in some good and some not very good at all.  So when the sun does shine the only place to be is outdoors.

Fortunately for us we have some beautiful countryside on our doorstep and mingled in there is a rich history of canals.  A walk along one of them was what we fancied this afternoon.

This stretch is part of the Rochdale Canal and runs from Sowerby Bridge in Yorkshire through into Manchester.  And that's a distance of 33 miles.  I thought it would've been more than that but that's what an information board along the way told me and I believe it.  Construction was completed in 1804.

See the fisherman up there tucked away in the shelter of one of the many old stone bridges?  He was as happy as Larry even though he hadn’t caught a thing all afternoon. This we know because William, having been an angler himself in the past, always has a little chat with the fishermen he comes across. 

The pretty view looking through one of those bridges.

It was a relaxing stopping and starting kind of a walk.  It was for Harley we did most of the stopping.  It didn’t matter. We were in no rush.

There’s plenty to see on a walk like this.  These pretty cottages have been renovated in the recent past and were still being extended and improved today.  A lovely little place to call home don’t you think?

Fluffy white clouds and blue sky reflected in the still-as-a-mill-pond water.

Along any canal you’ll find a mill or two.  This one, Fothergill Engineering, sports a very fetching clock tower.  Bit unusual that I think.

We had wandered quite a way so at this point we turned back towards home.

Dozens of grazing Canada Geese filled this field.

Harley is staying with us this week and next while Caroline and her crew are on holiday in Cornwall.  He was wandering ahead of me sniffing away at things as dogs do when I called him back to me.  I asked him to sit while I took his picture and he did!  I was delighted.  He did it more than once too.  Who’s a good boy? Harley is, that’s who!

Until next time,

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Deer at Dunham Massey Hall

Just a few quick photos from a sunny, summer’s day back in June when William and I, together with John and Lesley had a ride out to Dunham Massey for a visit to the National Trust property of Dunham Massey Hall. We had visited this property several years ago but couldn’t really remember much about it, so being the proud owners of a NT Membership, decided the time was right for another visit.

800px-Dunham_Massey_Hall_50mm_July_2013 Picture from Wikipedia

The hall in red brick and perfect in its symmetry is very pleasing to the eye.  To my eye anyway!


That’s William up there on the left and John and Lesley standing under the archway. 


And in front of the archway is this moat.  Very pretty entrance for sure. 


During WWI Dunham Massey became a military hospital, The Stamford Military Hospital, and to commemorate the centenary of the outbreak of the Great War the National Trust undertook to recreate the hospital as it was in those dark days.  As part of the project actors staged little playlets re-enacting daily life in the hospital. 


On entering the Hall visitors were told not to approach the actors but instead were asked to treat them like ghosts who could not see us. It all made for a more interesting and atmospheric recreation of those sad times.  Very well done I thought.


Deer roam freely at Dunham Massey. 


I knew this fact but I didn’t realise just how close up and personal they came to the public!


All very relaxed too and not one bit bothered by the strolling, staring public.


Talking about relaxed.  We all four were totally relaxed on such a lovely day and enjoyed a picnic in glorious sunshine.