Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Scenic B&W



This picture was taken in the summer at a local beauty spot.


For the first time ever I’m entering a challenge over at the wonderful photography website http://www.iheartfaces.com/


Sunday, 28 November 2010

Like a Mill Pond

Reservoir on Blackstone Edge

Blackstone Edge Reservoir taken at nearly sunset on the way home from Cragg Vale on Friday.


Saturday, 27 November 2010

Cragg Vale

Cragg Vale is a lush steep-sided wooded valley of outstanding natural beauty in the county of West Yorkshire (I just pinched that from this website).  Lucky for me it’s only ten or maybe fifteen minutes drive away from my doorstep.  It’s a beautiful drive too, up Blackstone Edge and then down into Mytholmroyd.  Yesterday was an absolutely gorgeous day, cold yes but definitely gorgeous.  With time on my hands I decided to take Muffin for a walk and Cragg Vale was where we made for. 


Dropping down into the village from the main road the church of St. John the Baptist in the Wilderness is a magnet for me.  Well I should say the graveyard really, the church has always been closed whenever I’ve been to Cragg Vale.  There is one particular little grave in here that always tugs at my heart.  It’s the grave of a little girl born on 16th March 1951 and who “fell asleep” a year later on her first birthday.  The inscription reads  “lovely, loving,  loved”.  Those three words are so poignant.

Old Cragg Hall, Cragg Vale

Walking on through the village and way, way up the hillside you’ll find Old Cragg Hall which was built in 1617.  There are lots of old stone buildings in this valley. I’ve never walked right up to the Hall before so yesterday I took a good look at it and liked what I saw.

Old Cragg Hall Barn, Cragg Vale  

To the far side of it I noticed this renovated barn and knew it had to be a holiday cottage.  I looked it up when I got home and sure enough it is.   It’s very nice.  Very pricey too!  Just in case you’d like to spend a week here next July and pay £865!! for it here’s a link to its website.


This is only part of the view from up there.  Beautiful don’t you think? 

I was thoroughly enjoying myself walking along the country lanes.  It was cold though, I was wearing gloves and my hands were still freezing.  The sun was beginning to go down behind the hills so I meandered back down to the car.


Maybe not quite what you would expect to find but smack dab in the middle of the village is a small pig farm.  They were really friendly little pigs too.  These two were adorable.  And look at ‘em looking right at the camera without any prompting.  I wish my three little treasures would do that!



Thursday, 25 November 2010

It’s gotten awful cold round here.

We’ve got snow headed our way.  Parts of Scotland and north Yorkshire have already got it. The earliest snowfall for 17 years. 

I needed to run an errand this afternoon.  I wasn’t going far, just to the local shops.  I also needed the fresh air, so I wrapped up warm, grabbed my camera and went.


I stepped out of the car at the canal.  Every bird there made a beeline for me.  See up there on the water at the top of the picture, that’s ice!


This cheeky goose jumped out of the water and got up very close and personal. He must have been 8” away from my face.  He and his mates were expecting food.  They were disappointed though, I’m afraid I don’t feed the ducks and their friends.  I don’t like the mess they make all over the towpath.


So they didn’t hang around me too long.  Just turned their backs and toddled off.



Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Wouldn’t it be nice?

A picture of me and my three little grandsons. Well, it would be nice for me.   I’d love one of those you see with everybody looking happy and looking at the camera.  All calm and controlled.  How do they do it?


Maybe I’ll get one of those one of these days.  But for now I’m more than happy with the more natural un-posed look.



Monday, 22 November 2010

That photo of William…

…I posted the day before yesterday.


Well here it is again.  This time it’s the true version.  I had played about in Photoshop with the previous one and removed William’s moustache.  My two daughters didn’t notice.  Well Victoria didn’t, I’m not sure if Caroline has seen it yet, but what’s more surprising is I showed it to William himself and he didn’t even notice the moustache had gone.  I ask you! 

It was fun to do though.  In all the years I have known William I have never seen him without his moustache.  Once upon a time it used to be dark brown but now it’s turned mostly white and isn’t thick as it used to be. He refuses to shave it off, despite every one of us at some time or other suggesting he should. 

Although now I’ve seen him without it I think maybe he should keep it!



Sunday, 21 November 2010

A Touch of Blue..

..on a grey day.

Burton Bradstock 06/09/2010

I want a new picture in my bathroom so I’ve been looking through my summer pictures.  I’m going with this one.  It was taken above Burton Bradstock beach in September of this year.  I think it’ll brighten a dull winter’s day and bring back a few happy memories at the same time.



Saturday, 20 November 2010


I am obsessed at the moment with textures, photographic ones that is.


Here I’ve applied a couple of different ones to this picture of William.  These particular textures are free from a wonderful blog I’ve recently discovered.  I think they make a big difference to the whole feel of a photo and at the moment I’m loving it. 

The blog is http://sarahgardnerphotography.blogspot.com/


Thursday, 18 November 2010

A Work in Progress.

This is my third attempt at knitting socks. 


Over the years I’ve done quite a bit of knitting but not for a long time and never with four needles at one time!  About 12 months ago I decided to have a bash at socks.  I kept seeing them on different blogs and thought I’d have a go.  I have to say it’s quite tricky at first to juggle four little needles all at the same time.  But very satisfying once you master the art.

Hand knitted by me, aren't they gorgeous?.   March 2009 

Here’s the first pair I knitted.  I was so pleased with myself the first time I put them both on and they fitted!  

I know the stripes don’t match but the yarn I use is the self-striping variety and the knitter doesn’t have any control over the striping.  Well, this knitter doesn’t.  Maybe there is a way and I just don’t know about it.  It wouldn’t surprise me.

So there’s my simple pleasure for this week’s link up with Dayle over at A Collection of This and That.



Sunday, 14 November 2010

Holden Wood Antiques

Holden Wood Antiques over in Haslingden is housed in this beautiful former church. 


We have been here once or twice over the years but not for some time.  However, our lovely friends and neighbours, John and Lesley, mentioned it recently so today we toddled over there for a bit of a mooch through all the treasures on offer.


There’s a lot of my kind of stuff in this place.  China, glass, jewellery, old prints and mirrors, that kind of good stuff.  It’s not so much William’s cup of tea but he played along and didn’t rush me too much. 


He had a full stomach maybe that was why.  We had eaten in the conservatory tea room, a new addition since we were last there, and very nice it was too.  This was our view.  I think this area has been quite wealthy over the years.  Look at all those impressive headstones.  Now they don’t come cheap and never have.  It was an immaculately kept graveyard too.  I would have loved a walk around it.  William?  Not so much.  Maybe next time.


I lingered in this little corner for a while.  There was allsorts of stuff jumbled together.  It was the brass candlesticks that took my eye.  My mother had a pair, they were always on the mantelpiece.  She would get out the Duraglit and polish them regularly along with all her other brasses.  My sister, Maureen, who lives in America now has them and they look right at home sitting on her mantelpiece.


Moving on I spied the little bookshelf in this corner.  The books on it were all leather bound.  The spines were all faded but the back and front covers were still deep shades of purple and burgundy. Soft and supple to the touch.  There were titles by Thomas Hardy, Walter Scott, Andre Dumas.  I must have handled every one of them and then put every one of them back.  I wish I had bought a couple, they were only £2.50 each.  Maybe next time.

I didn’t come away empty handed though.  I purchased a pretty Carnival Glass dish with fluted edges. I haven’t taken a picture of it yet.  Maybe I’ll pop back tomorrow and insert it right here.

It was a good day today.



Saturday, 13 November 2010

Today in Tod Park.

The weather wasn’t too bad today.  The gale force winds and torrential rain that have been battering the British Isles this week have gone, thank goodness.    It was coldish though, about 43F.

Todmorden Park 

You can see how much rain we’ve had when you look at the picture above.  That’s a football pitch in the park where all the water is!


The weather doesn’t bother us too much.  As long it’s fine we usually go out somewhere.  Today it was Todmorden Park.   Victoria had taken a little picnic for the boys and I brought along a flask of piping-hot coffee.  We chatted and the boys played. 

The contraption with the tyres you see the boys sitting on is a lot of fun.  It goes round and round in quite a wide circle and up and down if you want it to.  So much fun in fact that Victoria and I had a go on it!  George gave us a push. He thought it was hilarious when I screamed “not too fast, George!”  I’m telling you, that thing can go really fast.  We didn’t last too long, we both got dizzy on it!  It was fun though.

Todmorden Park

I don’t think the ice-cream man was having any fun.  It wasn’t an ice-cream kind of a day today.

After the play area we took a walk around the park.  The boys had their scooters with them.  Then it was back to our house for afternoon tea and biscuits.  At George’s request we used my best Chinese cups.  He means my china tea cups.  I see where he’s coming from though.

Just so that I’ll remember this.  George gave me a quick history lesson in the car this afternoon.  He told me about Henry VIII and the Tudors.  He rhymed off the names of all Henry’s six wives.  I couldn’t have done that. I’ve just checked on Google and he was right. He’s only seven and a bit!  That child has an excellent memory.



Monday, 8 November 2010

Barley cont’d

So here I am with more pictures from our walk up Pendle Hill yesterday.

Pendle Hill copy

I don’t want to mislead anyone.  We did not walk all the way up Pendle Hill.  You can see it here in the bottom picture.  That is one big hill and Nicholas for one wouldn’t have made it and quite likely Muffin would have conked out before he got to the top!  One of these days though I am going to get to the top of that hill and admire the view, it must be spectacular from up there.

When we got to Barley yesterday which is less than an hour’s drive from our front door, and after a drive through the most beautiful English countryside and seeing some of the quaintest cottages imaginable, we had our picnic. Yep, we finally had ourselves a picnic in the cold autumn air.  You might note that we are not sat down at the picnic table (top left). Those tables look like wood but in fact they are metal, too cold to sit on in November!  We then set off for our walk.  Not too far along we had a pit stop, a drink of hot chocolate was on the menu.  Then more trudging up the hill.

I think I’d better point out here that the bag with the pink swirls on that you see William carrying in a lot of my pictures is not his!  It’s my camera bag and he always carries it for me.  Isn’t he a good boy?


By this time the blue skies were disappearing but it didn’t matter.  We were out in the country, in the fresh air, and we weren’t getting wet.  Mmmm, heaven.

Pendle Hill 2 copy

I really like that bottom picture of George and his grandad, (who is now carrying George’s bag as well as mine).   They’re both looking back down the hill, leaning on a gate.  Nothing special, I suppose, but I just like it.


Why a picture of a telephone box, you might ask.  Well, this telephone box in Barley is the cleanest telephone kiosk I have ever seen.  Look, you can actually see through the glass and I thought that was just amazing!  I’ll bet someone in that village takes it upon him or herself to keep that kiosk in a good, clean condition and I think that is worthy of note.  I wonder why though when everybody has a mobile phone today.  Pride, that’s what it is.  Pride in their environment.  I, for one, admire it.

I can’t close without mentioning the Pendle Witches.  Pendle Hill is famous for it’s witches. Ten of them to be exact who were executed by hanging in 1612.  To find out more click here.


Sunday, 7 November 2010


Like I said this morning, today was a perfect day for a walk.  I rang Victoria just after I posted that to see what they were doing and as it happens she had already made a picnic but wasn’t sure where they were going.  Happily she and her crew came along  with us and Barley in Lancashire is where we ended up. 

Rising up above Barley is Pendle Hill and that was our ultimate destination.   More of that tomorrow.

VicFamilyBarley copy

Here are a few pictures of Victoria and her little family from today.  I’ll be back tomorrow with more pictures.

TTFN until then,


This template is a Coffee Shop freebie.  If you’ve never been to this coffee shop you’re in for a surprise.  It’s full of photography goodies.

Good Morning

This is the view from my window today.

Blue skies, cold, crisp and dry.  Perfect weather for a walk.  What could be better?


Friday, 5 November 2010

Dutch Doll Quilt.

I absolutely love quilts but I’ve never ever made one.  It was my fascination with quilts that got me into reading blogs.  There are so many wonderful quilting blogs out there.  Bloggers who show off their work, “take you with them” when they go quilt shopping (I’d love a trip round some of those quilt shops) and then also to all those wonderful quilt shows and festivals.

Today, Dayle, is having a quilt story link up and I’m joining the party.  One thing is for certain, I’ll definitely be reading all the quilt stories tonight.  Right after our Bonfire party, that is! I’ll bet I’m the only one there with just one quilt to show off though!

And this is it, my one and only authentic, handmade quilt and I love it.  It was given to me in 1975 when my first daughter, Victoria, was born.

DSC_7069 copy

My sister, Maureen, married herself an American GI. Well actually he was in the Air Force but you know what I mean.  They live in Arkansas where Jerry was born and brought up.

It was Jerry’s granny who gave the quilt to me.  She had never met me but because she loved Maureen and because she knew I was having a baby she made the quilt for me.  It was totally handmade by her.  I was lucky enough to meet her when I visited Maureen and Jerry many years ago.  Granny was a lovely, gentle, softly spoken, country lady.  She made many quilts, not just mine.  Maureen told me that granny would have known where every scrap of fabric was left over from.

When my girls were little we called it the Sick Quilt because it was used whenever they were poorly and would lie on the couch with it over them. 


Even now it is in constant use.  My little grandsons use it all the time as you can see.  Even Muffin loves it and jumps on it the minute it is taken out of the footstool in the living room where it is kept.

If I had lived in the USA I think I probably would have been a quilter.  There was a time when I did quite a bit of sewing.  It was when my girls were little.  Caroline got into sewing too as she grew up and we’d say that we’d make a patchwork quilt one day with all the leftover scraps but we never have.  But do you know what?  There’s time yet!


Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Made in England.

William had a day off work today.  He asked me if I’d like to go to Boundary Mill and Winfield’s.  Winfield’s is a large store which amongst other things sells camping gear and that’s why William wanted to go there.  He threw Boundary Mill into the mix as a sweetener because that’s more my kind of store selling amongst other things china and glassware, all that kind of stuff, which is why I said yes, okay, let’s go. 

As it happened we only went to Boundary Mill.  William had decided for some reason that the two stores were in the same neighbourhood.  They’re not, they’re miles apart!  Let’s just say he wasn’t too happy when he realised his mistake and leave it at that.


Anyway, we bought a few things today that we needed including these two mugs.  They’re china, which is a must for me when it comes to coffee mugs.  And what’s more they’re…


…made in England by very nice people!  That “Made in England” bit makes me very happy because so often these days everything is made abroad somewhere and especially with china it just doesn’t seem right.  I’m sure my cuppas will taste that little bit better in future!

So that is my Simple Pleasure this week, a little message on the bottom of a china cup.  Once again I’m joining Dayle at A Collection of This and That to see what others have found pleasure in this week.

And finally, it wasn’t all doom and gloom for Billy today.


Look how happy he was when he tried this hat on.  We had a really good laugh over it and so did everyone else in the immediate vicinity.  I’m happy to report we didn’t buy it.  Suits him in a funny old kinda way though, don’t you think?


Tuesday, 2 November 2010

It doesn’t happen very often..

…but Charlie looked right at me today when I had the camera in my hand!

Charlie Williams. 02/11/2010

And here’s the proof. 

I know I’m biased, but don’t you agree he is beautiful?