Sunday, July 31, 2011

Trip up the river Thames to Windsor

Yesterday I had a good day. I went, with my neighbour and ladies from her church, on a boat trip up the river Thames from Maidenhead to Windsor.
So here are just a few photos taken from the river boat

Maidenhead starting point

A Brunel bridge that they said wouldn't stand for very long. Still here still strong

Rolf Harris's home On our return journey we saw him sitting in the garden shame I didn't have time to photograph him.

One of the two locks we passed through, I have been told that they keep the area around the locks in pristine condition and they do.

This bridge is called the Chinese bridge as it was put up by a Chinese couple who lost their son in that spot

The Race Course at Windsor

Nearing Windsor
and of course the Royal Swans are a must to photograph

Nature's Calendar - Swan at Windsor

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Nature's Calendar - Seed hanging from a tree

It took some time to get a photo of these, I was on the bridge over the main road in town, with the camera on zoom and the light wasn't that good, most of my efforts were either not in focus or had movement blur, but patience paid off and I got this one

Friday, July 29, 2011

Photo Scavenger hunt - quirky observations - Digital Layout

I have three thing to talk about today so going to be a bit of a longer post than usual, hope you will keep going through to the end.
First of all I have some Graffiti art to share. These photos were not taken by me but by my neighbour who knew I wanted some for the scavenger hunt and saw them in Bristol yesterday.

although we don't seem to have any true graffiti art in Swindon we do have these boards which are a bit like graffiti and a bit like art and a bit like collage these are just 2 of the many that are around the town

and this amazing mosaic panel

I also see we have a proper greengrocers in the town centre, goodness we haven't had one of those for quite some time, and of course like all good greengrocers they hand write their price boards so I can cross that one off my list now

I have been take photos around the town centre today and came across two things that made me smile.
One of the new shops have what appears to be artificial hedges in their entrance and this was perched on top of one of them.

and here is a face in an old weathered board

Finally the digital page I did this evening
Rough & Tumble

Nature's calendar - Damson

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Explore - Old for new

I've been playing with a photo today to see what I could do. I did it all on Picnik
Cat on a hot tin roof
Rudi on the garage roof sepia

I did do a digital layout yesterday this was for the weekly challenge on UKScrappers.
2 Precious People
Challenge criteria was to use a punch use numbers in the title and hidden journalling.
the first two were easy as I 'punch' the shape from a patterned paper and found a title that would include a number. The hidden journalling is on the tag that is tucked in behind the photo mat and on my programme I can draw it out and replace it again. I did take a video of the action but the quality is very poor as it is not possible to take very good photos off the computer screen.

I've just had a quick thought, It's great to be young yes, but as you get to be in the latter quarter of your life it's great to look back on how things have progressed, especially if you are able to keep abreast of modern technology.

Nature's Calendar - Sticky buds in flower

I don't know the correct name for this plant but when I saw it today it brought back a memory from childhood. We used to pick these buds and throw them at each other to see how many we could get to stick to our clothing. Our mothers must have despaired when it came to washing as there were always some we would miss when removing them.

OK looked up this plant and it is Burdock (of course I should have remembered)

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


Isn't it strange how we take the technology we have today for granted. I was looking to see what was around me that would trigger a train of thoughts. The obvious thing was my laptop of course.

Do you remember your very first computer? mine was a Vic 20
(photo courtesy of google)
I used to programme in games from a magazine then it was a case of making sure it worked properly there would always be little mistakes in the language that had to be corrected and that was the real fun of it. I was never interested in playing the games just imputing them. I even made up my own one once. Can anyone remember what the language was called?
My very first introduction to a computer, however, was in the early 1960s. I worked in a bank in the stationery department so was never allowed near the computer. It was enormous taking up a whole room of its own. Everyone who did work in that department had to wear white coats and cover there heads.
Prior to that of course there was the ticker-tape machines, but I didn't really know anything about them.
In the 1990s I worked for a small firm and taught myself to use their computer when it wasn't in use in the afternoon. It was a dinosaur really I thing a 650 but it did help me to find my way around. Later when Helen came back from Uni she brought her computer with her and I was able to get some tuition from her.
I fought shy of going on the internet for quite a while and even when I did eventually give way I wouldn't have broadband as I thought I would never use it enough to warrant the extra cost. So it was just dial up for me. Boy I just can't imagine not being on the internet now.
My latest toy on here is Skype, it means that Helen and I can talk most evenings as if we were together and of course it is good to see my grandsons and for them to see me.

Nature's Calendar - Red Blackberry

Monday, July 25, 2011

Explore - Routine and Surroundings

Observing the little things that make up my day,
I awake at 5.56 far too early really but I'm wide awake so get up.
(OK I cheated I didn't take this at 5.56, though that was the time I got up, I just put the clock back to that time) :-D

I want to strip the bed, and this time instead of washing drying and putting the same duvet cover back on I decided to use a fresh one. It's been shoved in a draw for ages so I iron it in situ, never done that before but it is easier than using an ironing board. I'm not too keen on a pure white cover so find a pretty scarf that is long enough to go across the bed.

Then I must have some breakfast and of course that means putting on the computer. I always have my breakfast while saying good morning to my friends on UKScrapper. I also see if I have an email from Shimelle with today prompt. Yes and guess what, she suggest we take a photograph of where we sit, stand and sleep. Perfect, my bed looks so much nicer than usual

Where I sit when at the computer depends on the weather, in summer my computer is often in the lounge as it is too hot in the back of the bungalow. so I have a little plastic bedside table that slips under one of my armchairs. I sit in comfort and type and play.

and then of course there is MY CHAIR
There is a story behind this chair which I wrote in my playbook for today's entry.
You didn't start off as mine at all, you resided in Bishops Cleeve, much loved by my Mother in Law. You were bought for her by Langs the builders, because they looked after their pensioners extremely well. When she died you came to live with us and became John's chair. You are now rather old and shabby but I wouldn't want to part with you. I fall asleep in your arms, I watch TV from your comfort. I feel safe and relaxed in you. You are mine now, I wonder who will claim you after I'm gone.

There is nowhere to sit in my kitchen so that is where I stand, my favourite thing to do there is make endless cups of coffee and tea, but the best one of all is the one I have with my breakfast because I allow myself one cup of real cafinated coffee a day.

Now what shall I do today, a bit more decluttering I think. I have too much stuff in my bedroom, and it's never easy to keep clean and tidy as it stands, so time to rethink. I manage to cull a little bit from my wardrobe but not much I do love all my clothes and even those I don't wear often I can't bring myself to turf out. I do manage to get rid of the things that are in the bottom draw of my chest of drawers so now have an empty draw to fill up again. I was going to put all my scrapbook magazines up in the loft but decided that would sit on top of said chest of drawers (well for the moment anyway).

Checking on the washing I have white marks all over my duvet cover so back into the wash with lots of vanish on it. No use still there they just won't come out and I have no idea what has happened. Time for a new set (well any excuse to shop for petty things)
My neighbour kindly takes me into town as there is a shop that is closing down and prices are very low. I get a Duvet set that I like (hope it is as nice when on the bed). We pop into TKMax for a cuppa and a browse and then out to take a photo of the old Renault building (I needed a metal and glass one for the scavenger hunt).
As for the rest of the afternoon I really don't know what I have done except sit at the computer or in my chair to eat dinner while watching TV.

Photo Scavenger hunt

I've been trying to play along with Maria "Rinda" Ontiveros photo scavenger hunt I have managed to get some more of the things
Here is the list
1. A picture of your entire team (or a self-portrait, if you're playing alone). already done
2. A museum
3. A camp fire (or fire in a fireplace)
4. A protest, town hall meeting or other political activity
5. A hand lettered sign selling something or giving directions
6. A person dressed as a pirate  already done already done
7. A decorated mailbox (Non-U.S. participants may substitute a piece of garden sculpture) already done
8. Your country's flag already done
9. A festival or fair
10. A wooden bridge
11. A forest
12. A unicycle
13. A cemetery of historical significance or with an interesting story.
14. A castle
15. Graffiti art (not just graffiti and not just a wall mural)
16. A building made of metal or glass
17. Rain already done
18. A person sketching or painting outside their house already done
19. A beehive or an ant farm with live ants already done
20. A handmade roadside memorial or shrine.
21. A rooster already done
The ones struck through you can find here
I've added three more
the museum is a very tiny one at the top of the town where I live.
wooden bridge is over a very small stream just off the back lane (my walk to Asda)
The Metal and Glass building was originally a Renault showroom, built in 1985 it has always been painted yellow and looks just like meccano to me.

Nature's Calendar - Lily Pond

This clump of water lilies are in an inaccessible place so I had to use the zoom on my camera, therefore the definition is not great but I love the water's edge the reflection in the water draws me in

Friday, July 22, 2011

Explore - The Layout

I thought I was going to do a layout on my venture into Table Top Rallying, but Rudi had other ideas. As soon as I got the map out to take a photo he sat on it, move around a bit and settle there to have a wash. So of course he became the subject of my page on exploring maps.
where shall we go
This layout also doubles up for a challenge on UKScrappers which is to scraplift one of the finalist of Scrap Factors pages  I chose Nic-B's Afternoon Tea

A Wordle on Perfection

I thought I'd do a Wordle on my blog entry of Perfection. Just something to do while we wait for the next prompt to appear. I got it to print in alphabetical order. Just cos that would be a near perfect thing to do.

I love what is written in large letters across the middle 'eye (I) Love Perfect'. oh and how about just above the word perfect there is 'Perfection Photograph' yes I like that too. ' Images maybe' ' find fact'
It fun to see what you can find when you jumble up the words.

Nature's Calendar - Little green Frog

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Explore - Perfect

Perfect, what is perfect, what in my life would I not want to change.
I love where I live. I love the fact that I can open my back gate and walk out into the lane. The hedgerow, the trees, the birds, all call to me inviting me to seek out what is there. I cross the main road and into the back lane proper, this is my way of going food shopping, an enjoyable half hour or more stroll clicking away with my camera.
What is perfect in the plants and birds I photograph, probably nothing and yet everything. I love the images I capture. The feeling that God has planted them there for me to find. That He is walking with me showing me his treasures.
This photo I took on the 11th of this month. A wild oat, I think, just a single plant, by the side of a wall. It caught my eye and of course the eye of my camera. To me, perfect.

Or this one the seed heads of Meadowsweet look how they curl, perfect.

or maybe this the centre of an ox eye daisy, see how the florets are concentric, perfection itself.

I found a quotation that made me smile

No one is perfect... that's why pencils have erasers. ~Author Unknown

And finally a story that Scrapdolly put on her blog sometime ago, it shows that perfection is not always the best thing

An elderly Chinese woman had two large pots, each hung on the ends of a pole which she carried across her neck.

One of the pots had a crack in it while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water.

At the end of the long walks from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.

For a full two years this went on daily, with the woman bringing home only one and a half pots of water.

Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments.
But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it could only do half of what it had been made to do.

After two years of what it perceived to be bitter failure, it spoke to the woman one day by the stream.

'I am ashamed of myself, because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house.'

The old woman smiled, 'Did you notice that there are flowers on your side of the path, but not on the other pot's side?'

'That's because I have always known about your flaw, so I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back, you water them.'
For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate the table.

Without you being just the way you are, there would not be this beauty to grace the house.'

Each of us has our own unique flaw. But it's the cracks and flaws we each have that make our lives together so very interesting and rewarding..

You've just got to take each person for what they are and look for the good in them.

SO, to all of my cracked pot friends, have a great day and remember to smell the flowers on your side of the path!

A place for me to put the pictures of layouts I have done that I am pleased with, to put in the poems I write and to add snippets of things that have caught my eye