Friday, 28 November 2014

Novemberish

Hello lovelies,
this week has been classically Novemberish.
There have been a couple of very cold mornings, where I've needed to scrape the ice from my car before the drive into work. 
It's also been foggy and dampness follows the early frost....displaying cobwebs on railings.......


The ducks quack hungrily as I pass...........


The evenings are often foggy too, closing in the world and turning the street light's glow into balls of hazy orange............


Most of the leaves have fallen off our little silver birch tree...........


It's kind of sad, but it does give me a clear view of the bird feeders, which I've started to fill again.......

 there's a Great Tit in this photo, can you see him?


Yay, the Blue Tit's are back..........hello Tom.........

spotting our garden friends always cheers my winter days.

When it's cold and damp outside I love to make comforting meals and treats. A very simple, but  wonderfully tasty desert was enjoyed yesterday.

Two of these huge Bramley apples..............


 made a delicious crumble..............

THIS simple recipe.

My blog posts seemed to have slowed down a bit at the moment don't they. These short, dark days are not the easiest for photography and in the background I'm still plugging away at writing my latest tutorial.......... 


It's nearly finished now :0)

Jacquie x

Monday, 24 November 2014

A Surprise Sunset

Hello Lovelies,
after the sunshine of Thursday the rain returned. All this weekend was wet and grey. On Sunday afternoon I needed to pop to the local shops. It was so tempting to jump in the car on such a miserable day....but I forced myself to walk, I know I rarely regret the fresh air and exercise. 

I walked out of the house and looked up at the blanket of cloud ........and was surprised to see a little strip of blue along the horizon.
A smile spread across my face and there was suddenly a spring in my step.........


The street was still damp and gloomy, but little pops of colour caught my eye.......autumn leaves.......



and winter window boxes............


as soon as I had been to the shop I headed west.....hoping, hoping to see the sun.
 As I approached the corner there was a golden glow on the wall and the wet road............


and around the bend I was blinking in the bright sunlight. I do love the patterns of bare tree branches.........


The countryside was bathed in a golden glow..............


this evening light was...........actually mid afternoon :0)


Yes winter is fast approaching..........the last leaves are falling..........


But when the sun can peep under the clouds the distant view is beautiful...........


Concious I had already been out longer than planned, I started to walk home. Past that gorgeous garden I like to photograph from the roadside.............


As I neared home I saw a golden glow in the sky and remembered that at this time of year you can see the sunset looking south...............


This gorgeous sight stopped me in my tracks and I wasn't the only person admiring this wonderful sight............


A lady about my age had got of her bike to photograph it on her phone, and an old lady had crossed the road to see it too. We stood and chatted, the suns rays illuminating the clouds from below.......


watching the colours change and the distant hills turn purple.............


Soon the colours changed from yellow to red..........


The old lady told us she lived alone and didn't have any family locally. It seemed so sad. I just hope the little conversation we had, and the fifteen minutes we spent watching this surprise sunset together, brightened her day.

As the light finally faded and the street lights came on I felt even more lucky than usual to be heading home to my little family...........


Jacquie x

Saturday, 22 November 2014

An Almost Perfect November Walk

Hello Lovelies,
most of this week has been rainy or grey. That makes Thursday's weather all the more remarkable.
The forecast was for fog, followed by thick cloud. But the day dawned misty and soon it was sunny.....hooray.

I had been really looking forward to another group walk all week.
They meet locally, then car share to the start of the walk. A kind lady I met last week offered me and others a seat in her car, and we headed off.

It was 10.30am by the time we started walking. It was in an area I'm not familiar with.

The countryside looked so pretty in the November sunshine............


The Autumn colours just glowed...........

and the ponies blended in :0)

The field edges were full of Hogweed skeletons, brown grass and lichen covered, leafless bushes.......


The Ash trees are bare, making it easy to spot this lonely cluster of farm buildings............


Further along new crops were turning the fields green once more. There was not a breath of wind and a thin ribbon of mist hung in the air, along the border of the wood..................


I loved the burnt orange colour of the leaves that remained...........


Once again I chatted with various people as we walked, they are such  open, friendly people who are very easy to talk to.

we crossed a few wooden bridges over streams...........


and I was so happy to gaze upon new views, without the worry of getting lost :0)


Here we were walking along a quiet lane and the mist added a dreamlike quality to the view.......


When we reached this farm it was time to leave the lane and head across country once more.


Once again the pace was steady. It certainly didn't feel slow and there were hills to climb, which added to the effort and make you feel hot.
Soon we were looking down on that farm, and I was happy to stop here for a little rest. We enjoyed our drinks and chatted some more...............


Then it was time to climb again, before heading into the sunshine as we crossed another sheep field..........


Soon we arrived at the Iron Age Hill Fort that occupies the high ground........


Livestock grazed quietly. I loved these pretty little cows............


It was almost midday by the time we walked along the edge of the fort, but the low November sun still cast long shadows that highlighted the remains of the "walls".........


Here we are, well some of us. It's a well supported group and there were over twenty people out enjoying the glorious views and weather on Thursday............


You could see for miles looking north, but into the sun the view was still hazy..........


We all commented that it really was perfect walking conditions......except for one thing....the mud!.........


After squelching across a few more fields we arrived at the lunch stop. In a pretty village we enjoyed our picnics in the park.Where there were plenty of seats and benches..........


and views of gorgeous cottages........

I love to see a thatched roof

Soon it was time to press on, to drink in more views........

and smell wood-smoke in the air


How I enjoyed being out in nature, in the fresh air............


It's wonderful to walk with people who say things like  " look at that view" and "aren't we lucky to have all this on our doorstep"..........the sort of things I'm thinking too.


This was about 2.30pm........the sun was already sinking and the golden glow was magical..........


We had arrived at another village and there was just time for quick drink stop in the church yard.........


Then we carried on through is picturesque village. This timeless scene caught my eye.
 Old cottages and a little plot of land right in the high street, with geese and chickens free to roam............


Then it was up and down the last few hills. This was a bit of a scramble up a muddy path.........


Past young saplings and red berries.............


as we neared the finish the mist was really building again......rolling up the valley and creating a lovely glow...........


We walked 9 and 1/2 miles and were out for five hours including lunch and drink stops. Not fast I know, but it certainly felt like a good work out. My boots were so heavy with mud by the end I'm sure that added to the exercise :0)...........


and after we have taken off our muddy footwear it was lovely to head here for a hot drink and a scone..............

so cosy!

It really was a very special walk, another that I will remember for a long time. And if I forget bits, it will be great to look back here and jog my memory.
I do hope you lovelies enjoyed it too.
Jacquie x