A Wardley Walk

I took Phil and my iphone with me on my daily stay alive walk, and used the hipstamatic app, which is about the only photography thingy I have on my phone other than it’s inbuilt camera. Can’t wait for Sophie to get back and us to start up our outings again!

Here we go then!

Just outside our house on the drive

Lord Vincent

at the end of our drive are some unruly rose bushes, at least I think they’re roses,

maybe roses

round the corner and back on ourselves, up the pedestrian path and we found blackberry bushes growing amongst the trees by our fence.

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The path that leads to the common has really grown over since last I was here, in summer last year. I used to be able to see to the end of this bit of path.

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Not sure what little flowers these are, they were all over the wilderness part of the common.

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The common is actually marshland, and half of it has been left to go wild, and the other bit has a nicely mown large lawn about the size of a tennis court, maybe a bit bigger, where kids can play footy, and people train their dogs to fetch. In the marshy bit there are 2 ponds which serve the wildlife and birds, but even though we’ve had 2 days of heavy rain last week, the ponds have gone down the road of drought.

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the oak that a few of you might remember, well Pete will anyway 😊, is still going strong, all alone in the ridge between the ponds-that-were.

The Wardley Oak

after the common we got to a path that used to be a road

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and then we walked back home through the estate. The buildings here are a small busness kind of estate, mostly car fixers and pimpers.

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This is the long road that cuts through the middle of this estate, from the metro station and out towards the A1 or A19. The trees are lovely.

This is one of the houses we walk past on the way back and I love the giant cactus in the porch, it’s been there a long time, and whoever lives there decorates it at christmas 🤣.

Cactus – house.

A random flower poking out of someone’s fence, think it’s a honeysuckle but could be wrong.

I like the shared creeper here, I’m thinking it’s liking No.32 best.

32 for the win!

this is the last one, just before we turn into our bit, beyond the trees.

So that’s it, stay tooned in case I do something interesting for next time!

Day 168~366

I had to go into South Shields today to pay some cheques in to the bank, got the Fuji all ready, and then left it behind on the sofa! I didn’t realise until I got to Shields so wasn’t going all the way back for it, so I made do with the Hipstamatic app on the I-phone.  Won’t do the that again in a hurry!  Firstly though…

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It’s 16th June and rainy, grey and NOT summery.  So my trip with Sophie tomorrow to see the puffins again on Farne Island has been cancelled due to high winds. 😦  Sad face. Pouty lips.

SO here are a few window reflections from South Shields, I’m in there somewhere 🙂

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I wanted to get the lion outside the library in that one.

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That lady was wanting to look at something in the window, doesn’t look happy with me haha. Sorry old lady.

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This is the shot of the day, though I think I like the holiday one best, wonder why!

The Sunday Fraggle report~Christmas edition.

Well that’s Christmas over and done with, just New Year to go. It’s been a good week. On Monday I woke up to an amazing sunrise when looked out the window, had to get the camera out quick!

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On Tuesday I had a lovely drive up to the Scottish borders, amazing scenery, but a fair bit rainy. On my way home the moon rose and I got a couple of shots with the iPhone.

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The road to the moon

Phil has been working hard on his model Tiger tank, and Skye has been his constant companion 🙂

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It’s been nice to have some time off with family over Christmas. We had a quiet Christmas day, Phil went to visit the kids while I got to grips with making the Christmas dinner. And took photo’s 🙂

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new whiskey glass for Phil from the grandkids..

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and we had festive smelly candles

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Yesterday was Boxing Day, and we had the kids, grandkids and Phil’s sister Annette with her hubby Brian over for a buffet tea which I made. I like vol-au-vents.

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and it was great to see the madding crowd 🙂

Liddy the pink
Liddy the pink

with grandad

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Livvy
Loony Liv

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Mad Matty
Mad Matty

Cool Cal
Cool Cal

and all the family

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And I’ve been playing with some roses Phil got for me

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and I’ve been chasing sunshine around the house

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And that’s it for this week. Still got another day off tomorrow yay. Have been thinking about doing a photography project for next year, but haven’t decided which way to go yet, watch this space I guess!

laters gaters

🙂 ❤

 

The Fraggle report

Not the best of weeks, so am late with my post, Sunday came and went and I couldn’t find the words really. regular readers will know my little cat Storm was diagnosed with renal adenoma back in September and not given long to live. But she carried on unaware of her future and we loved her lots and even hoped they’d got it wrong, she seemed so OK. But  last week she started going downhill, and though we tried convincing ourselves she was just having a  bad couple of days, by Thursday night we knew the time had come. Unfortunately I had promised to visit my son and grandson this weekend, and couldn’t let them down. So I went off down south to see them, and Phil had to take Storm to the vets on his own.  Really that’s all I need say, anyone that has had a beloved pet will have gone through the rest.

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It was good to see Ben and spend the day with him. He looked too skinny so I took him out for lunch and dinner 🙂

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and then we went to pick up Lewis from school and took him to Toys R Us so he could choose christmas presents. That didn’t turn out too easy as the store is so huge, but he loved trying out the cars.

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On Saturday I went to visit my friend Helen, and the weather was really bad so we stayed in, apart from food shopping, and then has a yummy dinner.

I got home Sunday and have had a couple of days off. Had to take Phil to hospital today for laser eye surgery for his glaucoma, which was over and done with really quickly, and he’s OK, though he says everything looks a bit darker.

Not much photography done then on the whole, I had a strange sky to drive home to,

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and I put up the Christmas tree last weekend and forgot to take a picture of it so here it is 🙂

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and am trying to take pictures of the birds in my front garden, but failing to get anything decent, so here’s a not so great one of Mr.Robin. Must improve on that!

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So that’s my week and a bit, off to work tomorrow then more days off, fingers xt to do something with my camera!

laters gaters

😉 ❤

 

The Sunday Fraggle report~SeaLife edition

The horrible weather has been very horrible this week, culminating in Storm Desmond on Friday and Saturday. 70mph gusts of wind and rain, not too good for photography.  On Wednesday I had to travel to Scotland, but didn’t get inspired to take many photos.

It’s grim oop north

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Came across a telephone box though, always like to collect shots of these,

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This weekend we have had our grandson Cal to stay over while his Mum & Dad had a trip away for Dad’s birthday. We like to take Cal out, so in spite of Storm Desmond, off we went to Sea Life in Tynemouth. It was so windy it was hard to walk, but once inside it was OK. First thing we did was to feed Cal ..

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and then went in to see the fish. I gave Cal my Nikon S1 and he and Grandad also took some shots.

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The lighting inside is not great, and you can’t use flash, so lots of rubbish shots, but did get a few nice ones,

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Nemo
Found Nemo 

There is a glass tunnel to walk under where the fish swim all around and above..

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they also have an ‘amazon’ section with marmosets and a cotton top tamarind

Cotton top by Phil
Cotton top by Phil

Marmoset
Marmoset

We caught feeding time with the otters, it was really dark in the otter house, and neither my fuji or the nikon could cope with the combination of low light and rapidly moving otters, so I used the Nikon with flash and got told off by one of the animal keepers. Bad Fraggle. Don’t think I did any damage to the otters and they didn’t give a poo.

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We went to see the sealions which have a huge play park and they shoot around it so fast it was really hard to get a shot.

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And you can see them outside too.

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but it was too cold and windy for Cal so we went and had another cuppa, and got him some toys for his bath time

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and then we took a selfie as we left 🙂

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and went back home to get warm!

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and thats the end of this week.

Laters gaters

😉 ❤

The Sunday Fraggle report ~ bits & bobs

Another week gone by, 25 days left till Christmas and a bit of time off, but still work to do and photo’s to take.  This week I’ve managed a few so here we go.  Firstly I got in the car Monday morning and spotted a spider web on my wing mirror, had a go at a quick snap with the iPhone and din’t expect to really get it, but it turned out surprisingly well.

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On Wednesday although it was cold, there was a sunny day, and as I was travelling a fair way up and down the North East, I set my camera up on my phone so that I could drive and just hit the ‘click’ button when I saw something I liked, so here is a little travelogue of my work day in pictures 🙂

Setting off on the A1 under a zigzag sky
Setting off down the A1 under a zigzag sky

arriving at my destination, the house on the right.
arriving at my destination, the house on the right.

On the way back to the main roads
On the way back to the main roads

arty statue thing in Darlington
arty statue thing in Darlington

on the way back to the A1
on the way back to the A1 Yorkshire hills in the distance

Blue monsters on the A1
Blue monsters on the A1

arriving at clients flat in Hebburn
arriving at clients flat in Hebburn

going through Ashington to visit another client
going through Ashington to visit another client

Journey home down the A19
Journey home down the A19

Through the Tyne Tunnel
Through the Tyne Tunnel

arriving at the shop near where I live to invest in some wine!
arriving at the shop near where I live to invest in some wine!

On Thursday I took a picture of Skye, waiting for Phil to come home from work.

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and made a pie 🙂

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Friday I took advantage of the Black Friday sales and purchased some new processing programmes, can’t help it, I’m an addict 🙂  Phil meanwhile was trying to do his modelling…

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but Skye had other ideas 🙂

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that face!

On Saturday Phil was working, and I had my friend Sophie over for the day to do some indoor photography. Mostly we took pics of my cats 🙂

Sophie & Skye
Sophie & Skye

Storm
Storm 

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we also messed about with laser lights, crystal balls, prisms and a kaleidoscope..

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and took macro’s of flowers I bought.

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broken neck

processed with colorfx
processed with colorfx

processed with radlab and aurora
processed with radlab and aurora.

Am very happy with my purchases!  Anyway today being Sunday, I’m getting ready for work, but also cooking Sunday lunch, so, off to peel the potatoes,

laters gaters

🙂 ❤

 

 

 

 

The Sunday Fraggle report ~ bits & bobs edition.

Well it’s slim pickings at the moment with my photography.  I’ve been working extra hours, and it gets dark here at 4.30pm so once I get home from work, sorted home work out, and had dinner, it’s being difficult to feel inspired or motivated. On top of that the weather is pants. But hey- ho I did get a couple to be going on with.

Last weekend we went to the Annual Free convention held in Tynemouth, about 20 mins up the road from us. It’s (obviously) a yearly event where die hard fans of the band Free meet up, have some drinks and see Free tribute bands, as well as special guests from back in the day. This year the tribute band was Freeway, who were really good, and prior to them we had a solo singer, Toby, who Free’s now departed bass player Andy Fraser, discovered and recorded with. Not my cup of tea songs wise, but he was a great guitarist.

Toby
Toby

after him we were treated to a couple of class musicians, the guitarist Chris Spedding and singer Mr.Snips (real name Steve Parsons) both of whom joined a band called The Sharks, formed by Andy Fraser after Free split up. They were great and told loads of stories from the olden days when they were hot stuff in the music business.

Mr.Snips & Chris Spedding
Mr.Snips & Chris Spedding

I had a little outing to Seaham to visit the 1st WW memorial there. Its a statue called 11-0-1 but nicknamed Tommy.

This imposing metal sculpture, entitled 1101, owing to the fact the armistice went into effect at 11am on November 11, 1918, stands 9ft 5ins tall and weighs 1.2 tonnes.

Built out of special corteen steel, it has been installed on Seaham seafront in Country Durham to mark the centenary of the start of the Great War and was supposed to remain in place for three months. But the townspeople of Seaham wanted to keep it, so they raised the £85,000 it cost to buy it to keep.

Created by local artist Ray Lonsdale, the sculpture is also intended to represent Post Traumatic Stress Disorder which many of the returning soldiers endured. Mr Lonsdale got his idea for the piece after hearing a story about a soldier from nearby Murton who won a war medal.

Tommy collage

there is a plaque on the rear

tommy plaque

I visited a client who lives by Woodhorn Church,  St Mary the Virgin.  It was built in the early eleventh century but most of the external features are from a restoration of 1842. The church was made redundant in 1973 and is now Woodhorn Church Museum.

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The lady who owned our cats before we got them got in touch with me on Facebook, and sent me some pictures of Storm & Skye when they were kittens

Skye & Storm
Skye & Storm

and I’ve taken some of them this week too 🙂

Batcat (Skye shadow)
Batcat (Skye shadow)

Bag puss 1
Bag puss 1 (Storm)

Bag puss 2 (Skye)
Bag puss 2 (Skye)

Skye has taken to sitting under my work station when I”m on the computer when Phil isn’t here to entertain her.

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but she much prefers to be with Phil 🙂

Saturday morning papers reading club.
Saturday morning papers reading club.

As always, I’m back to work tomorrow, a long day ahead. So time to get sorted and ready for action!

laters gaters

🙂 ❤

new post up on the fragglefilm blog BTW 🙂

The Sunday Fraggle report~ bits and bobs

Here we are at the end of October and beginning of November and only 54 days til Christmas :). So as well as my days out and travels, of course there have been incidental bits and bobs to catch along the way.

At the beginning of the month I travelled to the Scottish Border land to see a client in a little seaside village called Eyemouth, and took a few shots with my Eyephone 🙂 It was a lovely blue sky day, with lots of shadows and contrasts.

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skyrep

 

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We had a couple more blue sky days before it all went a bit meh, and I got a couple of the trees around where I live..

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and that was the last of the nice days. So of course I then had to resort to taking pictures of the cats.

First a study of Storm sitting in the sunlight coming through the kitchen window,

feed me now!
feed me now!

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and Skye in the conservatory

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and maybe just one more of Storm 🙂

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Milky Mouth

Storm absolutely loves cat milk, I’ve never given cats milk before, only water, but this is special milk made for cats and they were brought up with it by the previous owner so we give them a little for a treat now and then.

We had a visit from our grandson..

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You may remember from a previous bits and bobs, that Phil’s socks clone themselves in my washing machine,  while I discovered mine halve themselves, not a pair amongst them!

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I bought a new Salt & Pepper set when I was on the ferry back from Holland,

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Salt & Pepper being patriotic

One of the blogs I follow is a cartoonist called Tony, who is currently putting up collector cards of his characters..he’s very funny and you can check his site out HERE

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I wanted to show the before and after pictures of our new patio in the back garden, but rain has prevented the builder chaps from completing it as yet, so that will have to be in November’s bits and bobs. It’s looking fab so far.

And yesterday was halloween! I carved a pumpkin, got lots of sweeties in for the trick & treaters, and then took pictures of them all when they came to the door.

First though my lovely hairdresser Kendal came over to do bits to me..

Kendal
Kendal

My pumpkin..

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looks a bit of a mess with my biro going wrong, but it looked OK in the dark

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The ToT’s had some fab costumes, these first 2 are out of focus, but you get the drift, the rest are OK 🙂

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and my favourite…

mini mummy
mini mummy

and to finish this set of bits & bobs, the only sunset I managed..

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I have such a busy work week coming, working late everyday and working one of my days off too, grit your teeth and crack on sort of a week, so best get everything ready to go..

laters gaters

😉

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Fraggle Report~ Eindhoven part 1

Last weekend we went off to Eindhoven in Holland for a scale model show, which Phil wanted to attend and put some of his models into the competition there. There’s no quick and easy way to get there from Newcastle, so we drove down to Folkestone and stayed overnight in our fave hotel, The Relish.

The Relish
The Relish

our room was on the right in the middle, and our view was..

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We had a lovely Chinese meal at our fave restaurant

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before setting off early in the morning to catch the ferry from Dover to Calais.

White Cliffs
White Cliffs

I didn’t take any photo’s on the journey through France & Belgium as I was doing the driving. The model show was at NH Koningshof conference centre, which was huge, and set in a lush forest next to a national park, which was a nice surprise for me and my camera!

The Conference centre
The Conference centre

The Car Park
The Car Park

View from our balcony
Looking down from our balcony

looking up from our balcony
looking up from our balcony

an atrium in the centre
an atrium in the centre

They set up a cafeteria for the model show in the stage room..

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amazing window..

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So a really nice venue in all.  We arrived on the Saturday evening for the show on Sunday, so I’ll post about that next time.

The Howick Hall Gardens report ~ part 3

Part 1 and Part 2

I’m back from Holland, and of course have come home with more photo’s to get through, so am finishing off my report on Howick Gardens so I’m not too behind.

After finding the ginormous leaves, we walked along the riverside to have a look at the church in the grounds.

Sluice gates on the river,
Sluice gates on the river,

fruits of the Big Leaves
fruit of the Ginormous Leaves

Bridge to the church
Bridge to the church

The church is a victorian building, and houses the tomb of the Prime Minister, 2nd Earl Grey, but other than that the interior was a bit boring to be honest. Outside was more interesting,

window
window

church door
church door

heads up
heads up

The small stone gargoyles on the exterior of the north wall were all carved by Maria, 3rd Countess Grey, who was a good amateur artist, but sadly she never got round to doing the south side.

Children didn’t always live too long in this era..

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Lilian, aged 2, & Sylvia, born and died on the same day.

Lots of leaves to be found with rain drops decorating them..

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and some really fine spidey webs..

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After Church we went back to the Hall for lunch in the Earl Grey Tea House, which was beautiful

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The Earl Grey Tea House

I had a rather lush duck & orange pate on toast …

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And then back outside to walk it off and take a few more shots before going home.

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eyeballing the competition

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another big leaf
another big leaf

lost feather
lost feather

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those were all taken with the Fuji XT1 using the 60mm macro lens (much maligned in the Fuji owners world!) and my 18-55mm zoom. But of course I always take the iPhone along and these next few are from the phone.

The Hall
The Hall

Sophie on a bridge
Sophie on a bridge

odd one out
odd one out

contemplation
contemplation

Topless
Topless

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pink hearts

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and that was the end of our day out.

Now to sort out my next lot of photo’s,

laters gaters

😉

 

 

 

The Sunday Fraggle report ~ Bits & Bobs edition

It’s just about the end of September, and apart from days out, as always I’ve been taking pictures of daily life. We went up to Edinburgh at the beginning of the month, as a new scale model show has started up there called Scale Scotland, and Phil was asked to do a demonstration of figure detailing and composition. The show was held at The Airport Hilton, which is a nice enough hotel, and it was cool to be staying in the same place as where the show was held, as we didn’t have to get up too early :). I got to try haggis for the first (& last!) time too. Packing to go wasn’t all that straightforward..

can I come too?
can I come too?

But we got there cat free 🙂

Arrival!
Arrival!

One of the organisers works for Lambourgini..so he had one parked outside the hotel

Lambo posing
Lambo posing

Our hotel room was nice enough..

mirror image
mirror image

Phil’s demo went well

demonstration man
demonstration man

and he also won some medals in the competition

silver hoard
silver hoard

I asked the organiser of the show if I could be allowed into the competition room during judging to take photo’s for the Tyneside Model Club web page which I run, and they said yes, so I got loads of pictures of all the models, unencumbered by the hoipoloi 🙂 these are a couple that won gold, great painting skills.

Oddball
Oddball

Cooler King
Cooler King

Phil’s Volksgrenadier won a silver which he was well chuffed with. We called him the mushroom man due to the ground work Phil did, he made mushrooms from plasticard, they’re really tiny. For scale, the chap is 12cm in height.

Phil's little man
Phil’s mushroom man

After the show the organisers and demonstrators all had dinner together and we sat with our good friends Hermann and Kristoff who were over from Belgium,

me, Phil,Kristoff Brian & Hermann
Fraggle, Phil,Kristoff Brian & Hermann

and the next day we went home.

Ah… home, or now The Menagerie. Phil’s son Carl and his family have had to move out of their house for 6 weeks while the council goes in and does a big renovation job. His temporary house is too small for his pets, so we are looking after Penelope & Rango…

Penelope, (top) & Rango
Penelope, (top) & Rango

They are bearded dragons, and have to be fed live crickets. I can’t watch, Phil has to do it, and though he didn’t like it, he’s got quite good at it.

We’ve had Cal & Liddy over last weekend..

Grandad
Grandad

Liddy
Liddy

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Cal loves Storm..

best pals
best pals

We had a really odd sunset..

sunset over the houses
sunset over the houses

a pinkbow
a pinkbow

I watched Bryan Adams on the TV doing The Hyde Park Festival in London, he was great, I really like him.

TV iphone shots :) Bryan Adams
TV iphone shots 🙂 Bryan Adams

I had some of family photo’s printed, they hang up on our staircase walls, so we can see them grow up as we go up

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Phil had an old magazine shot of one of his favourite ever singers Paul Rogers and it was all scratched and creased and faded, so he asked me to do my faffographic techniques and get it up on a canvas..

this is the original ( wish I could find out the photographer to give him credit, but this was in Phil’s scrapbook from 1970’s so that’s not happening)

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and this is it cleaned up and on our wall

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hanging..
hanging..

Found some mushrooms hiding in the front garden when Phil was mowing the lawn..

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I collected some acorns in my adventure hat..

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and today I strung them together and hung them around our defunct bird feeder in the back garden as a weathervane.. apparently they open their spines in warm weather and close up in cold, though I have no corroborating proof of that and anyway I can just look up at the sky! But it was fun to do.

weather is warm :)
weather is warm 🙂

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Phil is on the go with another tank..

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Went into South Shields to go to the bank for work…

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another sunset..

soft sunset
soft sunset

I discovered that Phil’s socks mysteriously clone themselves, he wears 7 pairs a week, and I do the washing on the same day each week but find between 10 &14 pairs come out of the washing machine..

cloned socks
cloned socks

I did some faffography for the Sunday Challenge group on Ipernity..

Escaping the Apocalypse
Escaping the Apocalypse

and yesterday had a go at an upside down shot, using the inverse glass of water technique!

set up shot….

inverse glasses
inverse glasses

The upside down finished article..

Upside down
Upside down

I hadn’t thought it through properly….removing the glasses afterwards wasn’t pretty.

And then there are the cute cat shots :).

But first have to say Storm’s trip to the vet did not go as planned. We went as she chucks up more than we consider normal, most days, (regular readers know this drives us mad!) and we thought she probably had an ulcer or some malabsorption thing and need medicine.  So they sedated her, took blood and did X-rays, and found a renal lymphoma, maybe one on each kidney but definitely one big one. So that’s a death sentence really. Even with chemo and radiotherapy the prognosis is poor, and we won’t put her through that.  The vet said not to leave it too long before we take her in for ‘the injection’, but I can’t do it yet.   We found this out last weekend, and are quite in shock and devastated, she is only 6yrs old and we’ve only had her 6 months.  She isn’t acting ill and is carrying on oblivious to her state, isn’t distressed or in pain, still eating and doing the other end well, so not yet. Not yet Mr.Vet. She is my special friend and this is breaking my little heart.

My special friend.
My special friend.

waiting for cuddles
waiting for cuddles

Favourite place to sleep
Favourite place to sleep

Skye is fine and just loves Phil to bits, won’t leave him alone when he’s playing his guitar/on the computer/having his brekkie/dinner or tea 🙂

Phil's special friend
Phil’s special friend

in Phil's modelling bag
in Phil’s modelling bag

Peeping not sleeping
Peeping sleeping

I love it when they cuddle up, Storm always puts her paw over Skye..

Sisterly love
Sisterly love

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cuddling
cuddling

Caught Skye on the speaker in the conservatory with a fetching piece of grass attached to her pink bell 🙂

Beautiful Skye
Fashion Icon Skye

and caught Storm looking regal..

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and roaring..

roar!!!
roar!!!

I should think there will be lots of Storm photo’s to come, while I can still have her.

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septmisc-7

So that’s September just about finished. Next month have got a day out with Sophie coming up but not sure where we are going, and also a trip to Holland for another model show, and we’re going on a ferry to Calais, that should be interesting as Calais is having refugee issues. Back to work tomorrow, it comes round too quick!

laters gaters

😉