Crikey! It’s February.

I just can not believe that we are in February already; I think I might have blinked and missed January. I suppose I should have a bit of a catch up but then again there’s nothing much to catch up on really.
Christmas came and went and was fairly uneventutful – even for Santa’s little helpers!!

Girlies at the Leggers.

It was a bit nippy in the pub that Christmas eve afternoon but maybe that was just the lack of clothes 🙂

And now we are in the middle of a ‘snow event’!! I prefer to say, ‘Hey! It’s snowed, better work from home then’.  I have had no opportunity to get out and about with the my camera but I did manage to take a few quick shots with the phone, which is kind of the point of this site really, so here you are.

Taken last night as it really started to come down – I had just got back from work and managed to put the car in the garage!

As I sit and watch the snow falling down……

And then this morning when we took the dog for his walk…..

The calm before the storm – the storm that will be masses of kids that is.

Calm before the storm.

My favourite tree – I wish I’d had my tripod for this; slightly out of focus fuzzy tree!! Damn it!

Tree in the right light!

That’s snow bush it’s a full grown tree!

And then I found the way back to the wardrobe!!!

The wardrobe is around here somewhere!!

Snow, dawn and some artificial light – I like that combination 🙂

Xmas at the Leggers!

As is traditional at this time of year, we have held a biggish works party at The Leggers in Dewsbury. What more could a girl want for a fiver – somewhere to party, food, disco, raffle, great friends and access to real ale – deep joy – a woman and her beer are seldom parted 🙂

In my natural habitat!!

4 nights in Bristol and the world’s your oyster! – pt3 Bristol

Day 3 – we planned to stay and mooch around Bristol and hopefully meet up, at some point, with our friend Clive for a beer. The weather started as it had on all the previous days – overcast & foggy – but standing on the baclony of our apartment, the temperature seemed to be a little warmer than previous days so I got me legs out again – ever the optimist. We basically spent the day being touristy (SS Great Britain, Harbourside, Cabot Tower, Cathedral, St Mary Redcliffe) and though I tried to get some shopping in up by the Uni at some of the little clothes boutiques Paul wasn’t having any of it and I came away empty handed. Just a for a few minutes though I felt like I could have been a student again, setting out in life with the whole world before me – Oh no hang on that’s just my mid thirties crisis that makes me feel like that 🙂

 Rushing by!Over the edge!That beige blur is me you know!

A self portrait in which I feel somewhat small!

After a tiring day of walking about we did manage to meet up with Clive in the evening and a supposed quick soft drink turned into eventually saying goodbye several pints and a few hours later – a perfect end to a great break – goodo 🙂

4 nights in Bristol and the world’s your oyster! – pt2 Westonbirt Arboretum & Clevedon

Day 2 was already pre-planned; Photography at Westonbirt Arboretum, with a friend made on a Light & Land trip, where we would try and catch some of the early autumn colours. While the day began misty and overcast in Bristol as we drove inland the sky turned to blue and the sun appeared. A quick cuppa and a catch up and then off we went in search of images. Inspiration came thick and fast and after a good hour or so we still hadn’t moved further than a couple of hundred yards down the path we set off on. Much serious photography was done with my Pentax where I needed total control over composition etc. but I still did get the phone out every now and then.

Honestly I wasn’t stuck…..

This shot I took with the phone because I couldn’t get the Pentax into the position required to try and capture the spiral shape of the tree trunks. “Mum there’s a lady stuck in this bush!” declared a small voice at one point. “No, I think she’s just taking a photo darling” came the reply which was swiftly followed by a “No, the lady is stuck in the bush”. I find it is best to agree with small children sometimes and for once I was content to be stuck in the bush happily snapping away to myself with a smile on my face.

Here are a few more images that put a smile on my face.

Go on give us a turn……….

What a cool tree……..Single red leaf, GSOH, NS seeks………

Come on you reds!

I attracted attention 2 more times before we stopped for lunch. Now, if I’m lying on the ground in front of Bath Abbey photographing a plastic pig (no, not a reliant robin) then I expect to get some looks and the odd enquiry but just trundling around with my camera & tripod I was beginning to wonder exactly what was it that made me approachable? Especially when there were plenty of other photographers about, not in the least the 2 other members of our party!!! The funniest of these encounters was the lady who asked if there was a caterpillar on the thistle I was up close and personal with, then, after I had explained what I was doing shouted for her husband to “come and get some hints from this lady”. I think I baffled her -there can be no other reason for anyone to be prone on the ground with a huge lens poking up at a single thistle other than there being a caterpillar on it can there?

What no caterpillar?

Departing at around half 4 after an exciting and exhausting day I decided that I needed to see the sea and possibly a good sunset. I managed to persuade Paul to drive me over to Clevedon where if I didn’t get a good sunset (it was a bit lack lustre) there would at least be a pier to look at. No sand on the beach at Clevedon but there are some good looking rock formations……….

 What no sand!Nice quartz! Sadly though, for me, not a watch movement!And in amongst the small rocks……..big rocks!!

………………..and it would appear that there’s always someone on the end of the slipway! Don’t you just love the way that while the responsible adults seem to be intent at staring at something the toddler is running hell for leather towards the sea!!!

 There’s always someone at the end of the slipway!

See how happy I look at the prospect of having a walk along the sea front as the weather closed in a bit and the temperature dropped and I still had my shorts on! – lovely 🙂

Happy Happy Joy Joy! 

By way of contrast see how happy Paul looks when told he will be accompanying me on my jaunt! Though to be fair, it appears he had just been stabbed in the back by a rather nice Victorian Pier 🙂

Crazy woman’s got shorts on you know!!!!

4 nights in Bristol and the world’s your oyster! – pt1 Bath

Just had a cracking long weekend in Bristol. Beer, food, friends & photography – what more could a girl ask for? Despite the forecast telling me it was going to be good weather, each morning we awoke to heavy mist and overcast skies – it didn’t look too hopeful for a successful days photography in Bath but despite this I lugged my kit around and did get some proper shots in as well as the usual camera phone stuff when the skies turned blue later on.

First some Cranes in the mist…….

Cranes in the mist 1

Got off the train in Bath, headed into town and the misty conditions made me stop and look at these cranes performing their aerial ballet where I might not have otherwise bothered.

Cranes in the mist 2

Now I’ve seen Kunst und Kuh in Salzburg and Cow Parade in Marseille but Bath, just to be different, Bath were having a Pig trail. I’m such a sucker or should that be suckler (ooo bad) for things like this so here are some pigs. (click on the thumbnails to enlarge and the back to return here)

This little piggy went to market……This little piggy stayed home……………This little piggy had roast beef………………

This little piggy had none………..

There were three on the edge of the grass in the circus looking out down each of the roads leading to it but I think they might’ve missed a trick here – where was the piggy in the middle? Maybe there was one on a roundabout somewhere called piggy in the middle that I just didn’t find?

And this little piggy found someone to love it a take it all the way back home :-)

Apart from the pigs I did the usual tourist stuff of visiting the Royal Crescent, the Abbey and the Roman Baths.

Bath Abbey with colourful flags.

The Royal Cresent

If I’d tried a bit harder I’m sure I could have gotten all of the cars out of the shot. How rude of people actually to live here and spoil the photography 🙂

The Royal CrescentWoah! What’s with the architecture??Round the backs - sometimes more interesting.“Never again” says a bench in the cold light of the morning after!

Water forked like lightening… :-)

A Bath traffic cop keeps things moving along smoothly 🙂

Imperial Traffic Cop!

The day in Bath ended with a couple of swift pints in a good local pub, the Volly, where I managed to attract the attention of the regulars who found the fact the more ‘diminutive’ of the two of us was carrying a huge backpack really quite amusing.

Shelley who is called Brian!

A view that I don’t often get to see – a rucksack with legs! Paul took this photo of me doing my Brian the snail impersonation while we were walking on the Farham Estate. I’d better not get any more kit, a bigger rucksack would look just down right ridiculous!

Brian the Snail!

Deep into Cavan I ventured!

I’ve just spent a spiffing weekend over in Ireland for the wedding, well, blessing of last year’s wedding, of my longest standing friend – and No, that doesn’t mean that she, of the two of us, was most able to hold her drink!!! I’m not going to post photos of the actual do here but since the surrounding countryside was beautiful, and I managed to get over to the East coast on the way back to Dublin, the ol’ N73 got a bit of use.

We stayed at the Radisson SAS Farnham Estate Hotel and very nice it was too. Oodles of land to wander in and the odd photographic opportunity presented itself. I took similar shots to the next 2 with the proper kit but sometimes I just can’t think why I bother as the phone copes remarkably well – just kidding!! Honestly 🙂


Farnham Estate Lough

Driving around looking for interesting things we followed a brown sign to Monasterboise – turned out to be a ruined monastery & round tower (we had sort of guessed this) but it had one of the most intact High Cross’, Muiredach’s cross, in Ireland, apparently.

Monasterboise High Cross

Monasterboise also had a couple of benches which I found irresistible. I had a thing for photographing benches a couple of years back – I was kinda on the wagon but fell off momentarily.

I can never resist a bench!

Further wanderings took us to the coast – well, well engineered wanderings took us to the coast – Deep joy 🙂

Coastal rock formations - Skerries

O! I do like to be beside the seaside…..O! I do like to be beside the sea…………

…………beside the seaside, beside the sea.

A final stop at Ardgillan Castle, again following brown signs, gave us the opportunity to rest a wee while in some beautiful gardens.

I knew I carried this massive kit bag around for some reason!!

The best use for my kit bag other than it’s purpose!

Santorini or bust!!!

And from what I saw there was rather a lot of bust – well from what the lads saw there was rather a lot of bust and I’m not willing to divulge whether any of it was mine, especially if there is no photographic evidence!!! A week at the beginning of June on the Greek island of Santorini with Light & Land Photographic Tours proved just to be what the doctor ordered – provided of course what the doctor ordered was being with a great bunch of like minded people, getting up at about 4am, going out photographing at about 5am and continuing on with brief rest periods in between right up until midnight on most days!!!!!! Pah! And they call this a holiday!

Sometimes when I just couldn’t be arsed to get my camera kit out of my rucksack I used the good old phone and sometimes, shock, horror, I only took the phone with me so had no choice – I hasten to add these times without a proper camera were few and far between and mostly also involved shopping or eating.
Churches, blue domes, donkeys, dogs, sunsets and crazy people describe a typical day and the wee selection of piccies below illustrate this. Click on the thumbnail whenever you see one to enlarge and then on the back button to return to the post.

Gate & FlowersChurch & Bell towerThe first blue dome of the blogYellow deck chair


And after a few sensible setting the scene shots now for some crazy people:
This is Donna having just seen the size of my chocolate bar 🙂

How big!
And here we are together waiting for the sun to set whilst setting a new trend of dancing around a tripod.

 New age sun worshippers!

A couple of my feet – just because………


Clive (name has not been changed to protect the innocent) taking a picture of, having just managed to attract them, a large Japanese gaggle of giggling girlies – how does he do it?

Our man in Oia!!!

Oh! This could possibly be the reason why!!! Absolutely irresistible 🙂 One man and his optimistic shadow!

Hot or what?

My Paul at a dawn shoot – he’s a happy camper!!

I’m a happy camper!!

I’m not sure whether these 2 are playing at artistic photography or just rushing to the rail for other reasons! I didn’t get too close to find out!!

Some blokes just never get their sea legs!!!

And back to a few more touristy shots including ‘A Windmill named Clive’ – you need to look closely and then compare to previous shot of Clive, you should eventually see the similarity!!!!

A Windmill named Clive

Greek Plumbing – honestly it got so backed up we decided eventually just to grow things in it!!!

A beautiful bowl of flowers

image824sml.jpgimage815sml.jpgThe view back to Imerovigli

image804sml.jpgChurch & Cactus flowersimage795sml.jpg


Stairway to Heaven

Stairway to Heaven? If there had been a bacon sarnie at the top of it after this particular 5am start then it sure would have been 🙂