Sunday 31 October 2010

Saturday Morning Bike Ride

On Saturday monring I decided to make a visit to the avenue to see how the trees were looking...

Off up the long hill. I'm heading south-east so the rising sun is hidden behind the hill which creates lovely silhouettes such as these trees and, if you look closely, a flock of birds flying between them.

The moon is still up, pylon lines cut across the blue sky.

Looking back from underneath the wires.

A couple of cows watch me make my way slowly up the road.

I like the contrast of bare branches against wintry blue skies.

Made it to the top. Unfortunately the sun has since hidden itself behind a large bank of clouds. Never mind, some cows come over to say hello.

Autumnal trees lie ahead. When I reach the trees I disturb lots of little birds who have been feasting on the beech nuts. Among them are...

... great tits (similar markings to a blue tit but with a solid black cap),...

...and bramblings. I find the RSPB website a big help in indentifying birds, particularly the "similar birds" section as I had at first thought the brambling might have been a chaffinch.

The avenue and the reason why I came this route. I'm a little disappointed as the sun is still proving elusive and the sky is rather grey, so not such a good photo as I'd hoped for.

Looking up.

Also on this route a few miles further on is the little ruined cottage, I stop to take a photo through the window.

And then the sun comes out, hooray!

Now heading downhill towards Barcraigs reservoir.

The whole time I've been out cycling the hills on the other side of the strath have been bathed in constant sunshine. I definitely picked the wrong direction weather-wise today.

The gorgeous colours of the trees around this little section of road cheers me up though. The previous day we had quite a lot of rain as you can see.

At the junction coming up I'm going to turn right in the direction of the sunshine...

...found it! What a difference, it makes the leaf and berry colours dazzling bright.

Barr Loch.

Bridge over the river Calder.

A swan on Castle Semple Loch. The big bank of clouds is still lying over the area I've just spent the last couple of hours cycling around.

The notices warn of issues with the water quality, nobody's told the ducks.

The swan on the left with a yellow beak is a whooper swan. He has a damaged wing and stays at the loch year-round along with the mute swans.

I then zoomed home along the cycle path.

That afternoon we all went for a little walk on the braes...

... someone tell this guy he needs a bigger bike.

Thursday 28 October 2010

Crochet Robin

Spotted... the garden... HUGE robin.

Last seen in N's dumper truck.

Pattern here but I mucked up making the body which turned out rather larger than it should have been. Will have another go soon but with modifications...

Monday 25 October 2010

October so far

I enjoy taking photographs! In keeping a blog I have realised how difficult it is to express oneself in writing. For me, a picture does indeed speak a thousand words. Here are some October photos, no link between them aside from that fact that they are all from October this year and were taken within 500 yards of home.

Early October, a bee (I love the detail of the wings) visits the asters.

My version, raspberry and brown chocolate. The raspberries on top were from the garden, the canes were only planted this year and we didn't actually expect any fruit till next year. They were lovely and sweet.

N's teddies being bumped down the step into our kitchen. I did originally think I would paint this step at some point but I rather like the "distressed" look of it now, plus there are other jobs further up the priority list...

...such as tiling the kitchen. I still have vague plans to do some sort of mosaic, in the meantime a huge chopping board acts as a splash back behind the hob. For tea this day was chicken casserole (one of my favourite dishes). The chocolate cake far right was eaten before it was even iced, healthier that way I suppose!

Some of A's velcro animal creations, a snake and an elephant. She was keen that they be photographed.

Better than cbeebies; N watches some digger action from the living room window.

After school A & N play "beaches" in the garden.

A rainbow. It was a gorgeous Autumn day for visiting the nearby park...

...N absolutely loved running around in the fallen leaves.

The leaves are satisfyingly crisp and crunchy this year...

... perfect!

An aeroplane follows a recent vapour trail.

A halloween picture by A. I'm pleased that the spider and witch look happy and friendly, especially as they are now up on one of the kitchen cupboard doors.

A asked me one day what my three favourite things were. I replied that she, N and daddy (hubby) were. She disappeared to her pens and paper for a while and returned with this picture for me, she'd even made a frame for it. Awwwwwww!

Holly berries ripening nicely.

A frosty leaf.

Our doormat(!)

An attempt at a corner of my home photo. Corners are all I'd post, the rest being so untidy, I despair of ever getting the whole house tidy at one time ever again.

So, some of the nicer aspects of life in October. I like to remember what has pleased rather than record things I'd prefer to forget after all, like most of us I expect.

Saturday 23 October 2010

Saturday Morning Bike Ride

It's raining! This year it has been unusual for me to have to make my Saturday morning cycle in the rain (such a change from last year). I actually rather enjoy the novelty of it today.

Off up my favourite hill through the woods, here I'm quite sheltered from the weather and the raindrops and leaves pitter-patter to the ground together.

Now at the top of the hill, less sheltered but the rain is still soft. Two horses stand in a field next to the dyke.

An imaginative place to leave your empty can of tennents (and which led me on a YouTube journey resulting in this blast from the past, makes me want to go and live in Scotland, haha!)

Now, some cow line-up action:-


It started raining a bit more heavily at this point and the wind was blowing the rain into my face, so no photos were taken for the next few miles.

However, by this point the rain had eased and I'd also changed direction. I like this row of little beech trees sporting their Autumn colours and each with a little section of hedge in front.

A direct view of one of the trees.

A little further on looking back down the road, the little trees can now be seen in the middle distance on the right.

Further on again, looking north across the fields to the far away hills some of which have a light dusting of snow.

The "view" south at exactly the same point.

Yet further and I'm approaching the woods with the lochan. I get off my bike for a little walk in the woodland.

The lochan looking grey and still today.

Heading back towards my bike.

Homeward bound now I pass the little fancy summer house looking rather neglected.

The view over the countryside from the same position. A lovely Autumn landscape, a little sunshine would have made it sparkle a little more though.

The grand doocote, only one dove present perched on the top of the gate arch.

A last view before cycling through more populated areas towards home. It was quite a cold morning, definitely glove wearing weather.

I hosted a craft night last night - we're starting to make things to sell at the school fair. Another excuse to make some cakes (no wonder I don't like to miss my weekly cycle or I'd be the size of a house!), and bring out the Pimms No 3 - delicious served warmed with apple juice.

There's some chocolate cake left...

...but I decide to have a piece of chocolate caramel shortbread (or two) after my shower.


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