Saturday, 22 April 2017

10 Years and Where to Go From Here!

I'm sitting here at my computer with all kinds of thoughts running through my head about blogging. I have published so few posts in recent months that I know I am losing followers. Also I have not visited other blogs as much as I have wanted to.
It feels like I am running out of ideas after 10 years but I don't think it's really that, it's more that I've set myself too high a standard and think I should always be posting lots of lovely photographs.
Having struggled with spinal degenerative changes and the resulting pain I have not been out and about like I used to so have not taken lots of photos.
I have also taken the easy way out with Facebook.
However when I really think about it I do NOT want to stop blogging. I have made too many friends and connections here and learned a lot so.............I am hoping to get out and about more this year as I learn to pace myself and manage pain. We have a holiday booked for next month (having cancelled our holiday last year) and I will be testing the waters and learning to keep within my new limits. Two years ago I could walk all day and climb up and down hills, now it is keeping to the flat as much as possible (not so easy in this country - we even live on a hill). 
I don't want to sound all negative, I know there are many people, and much younger, much worse off than me and I feel blessed. 
So here goes...................

This is the latest area where we took out 9 shrubs and grassed over last season and my new Spirea are doing well.

On the left we see what the winter does to our path and on the right we see what husband Alan does to make them right again.
At the same time he is moving them all closer together as when the ground was soggy in the winter I found it difficult striding out.

Not finished yet, but he is getting there. 
Pretty good for an 85 year old.

and here is dear Rebekah who was 8 last week enjoying the Gymnastic championships at the 02 Arena.
She loves her gymnastic classes and is very good at it.

Saturday, 1 April 2017

2017 Garden So Far

The Green Winter Garden

The slightly Frosty Garden
No hard frosts this year

The Misty Garden

The in between garden 

The Sunny Garden

The Spring Garden

and the Corkscrew Hazel 
which is overwhelming me right now
I pruned it back hard last year and it is again needing a lot of attention and 'I don't know where to start!'
Back issues do not help.
How glad I am that we removed so many shrubs in the last 2 years

Monday, 6 March 2017

Climbing Kilimanjaro

As promised beginning posting some of son Peter's more exotic travels. Here we begin with Mount Kilimanjaro which is located in TANZANIA - a country in East Africa.
The mountain rises to 19,340 feet above sea level.
It is the tallest free standing mountain (not part of a mountain range) in the world.
Just a few of the 100 plus photos.

Here we see the initial party of 12 that began the journey.
Son Peter is at the back, 4th from right in the pale blue tea shirt. 

Some of the reasons to forbid the climb
Hikers must be physically fit.
If you have a sore throat, cold or breathing problems DO NOT go beyond 3,000 feet
Allow plenty of time to acclimatise by ascending slowly.
If you experience symptoms of mountain sickness please descend immediately, and more.  

Up and up with the African plaines behind them

First night of camping

Porters go ahead and set everything up, tents etc. and cook the meals

Higher and higher

and looking towards the mountain

A birthday surprise

A clear view of the mountain but still many days to walk

and a view of the peaks with the top of the mountain in view

Looking down on the world 

The mountain at sunrise


Took 6 days to climb the mountain so quite a few nights camping

Peter looking through the door of his tent towards one of the lower summits

Much harder walking now

Feeling on top of the world

Someone didn't make it!

Just keep going

This was the stopping point for some of the group

The fitter ones continued

Just a step at a time now

The seven that made it

Peter being one of them

With the porters and team that made the journey possible
Interestingly a few of the group have stayed in touch (this was 5 years ago) and they meet for climbing or walking weekends a few times a year.

Saturday, 25 February 2017

Disturbance in the Road and Tranquillity in the Park

We were disturbed by flashing blue lights outside our window last evening. It seemed a car chase terminated outside our house.
Just a brief picture from my i-pad showing a little part. It felt a little like being on a movie set.
There were 3 police cars and a very large police van (out of the picture) and at least 12 policeman to whom the suspects were handcuffed to some of them.
It was fascinating watching a sniffer dog getting so excited when it found what it was looking for.

Contrast to tranquillity in our local park.
The scene is of lights over East London at dusk which look like they are on the horizon here. Not so, we are on a hill. 

Now to some sunset scenes where I love the variety on different days.

Contrasting with the pale sun of a winter afternoon lighting up the newly pruned Dogwoods.

I have at last found a way to deal with my photographs and files in Windows 10. It may not be the best way, I don't know, but it works.
Using photos from my phone, i-pad and camera took some thought as well. The easiest thing seems to be to let the software do what it wants and then copy and paste to where I want them. More time consuming but, hey! it was worth it.

Monday, 30 January 2017

Colouring to Relax

I really enjoy colouring but am not good at setting the time aside to do it. This book called the Secret Garden is wonderful as it is so detailed and intricate but it can take a long time to finish a page like this. 
I do have other books but I can quickly get bored with the simpler ones. 

As other colouring fanatics will know, it is very, very relaxing having to totally concentrate.

Another thing I find relaxing is my new wall hung fire.
Was really worth getting rid of a chair for.
This sun room is where I sit and read but having a flat roof it can be quite cool in the winter, even though there is a large radiator along one side, and especially in the freezing temperatures that we have had this year, as it has a flat roof.
So all set now for when I don't want to spend an evening in the sitting room watching TV.