Thursday 24 February 2011

If You Go Down To The Woods Today.....

You too might see a lovely fungi...

Or a pine cone or two!

Today was the first chance The Children's Mother and I have had all week to get out for a walk in the local forest and take advantage of the children being away skiing.  Rain and house hunting for my Mother have got in the way and taken priority respectively!   Speaking of the children, Jonny badly pulled a muscle on the first day and lost two and a half days of skiing while  Lauren had a bad fall yesterday injuring her neck and is out of action for the rest of the week and in considerable pain.  Helen on the other hand (touch wood) is having a whale of a time whizzing down impossible cliffs!!

It will be nice and a considerable relief to have our daredevil children back home at the weekend, painkillers and plasters at the ready.......

Sunday 20 February 2011

3200 Degrees!

Dreary!  Probably the best (only?) way to describe today.  Still, a good opportunity to wind the camera up to 3200 and see what happens.


Brings back the good old days of Ilford HP5 shot at 1600 and processed in neat developer.......Ah, happy days!



ps The kids sent a message to say that it snowed in Val d'Isere last night, conditions good.  Happy children!!

Saturday 19 February 2011

Then There Were None!

First day of half term and we were all up at four this morning to send the children off to France on a skiing holiday, the house seems so empty and quiet without them.

I took no pictures today so I have posted this shot of the burn at the cottage, which I took yesterday but ran out of time to post.



Wednesday 16 February 2011

Interview Day

The eldest girl was off to Nottingham today for the last of her Uni interviews, a five hour marathon involving team building, practical tests, sample analyses and even an interview!  She felt it went well so fingers crossed, these are anxious times.....

[caption id="attachment_1347" align="aligncenter" width="1024" caption="Autumn Leaves - Still?"][/caption]


[caption id="attachment_1348" align="aligncenter" width="1024" caption="Fungi"][/caption]

Tuesday 15 February 2011

A Bit Random!


[caption id="attachment_1342" align="aligncenter" width="680" caption="The Leaning Chimney of..........."][/caption]


[caption id="attachment_1343" align="aligncenter" width="1024" caption="Sunset in the Tyne Valley"][/caption]


[caption id="attachment_1344" align="aligncenter" width="1024" caption="Well, they did ask!"][/caption]

Thursday 10 February 2011


Not much in the way of excitement at the moment.

While I was wandering round the field with the dogs this morning I spotted this fungus on an old fallen tree that we keep to sit on in the sunshine.  Back at home I made some more butter, it has proved very popular in the house, and some bread to put it on.......

The hens are laying like fury at the moment, ah happy days!

Tuesday 1 February 2011

Step Back in Time

I had to go over to Lanchester to do a few chores this afternoon and on the way home I stopped to take a look at a historical site I have known all my life but only visited once, some thirty years ago!  Time for a refresher.....


St Andrew's stands on the top of a prominent hill between Wittonstall and Slaley and commands a magnificent view through 360 degrees over the mid Northumberland hills to the north, the North Durham Moors to the south and towards Newcastle to the east.  It is some 200 plus years old and standing on an ancient site, was once the Shotley Parish Church.  It is in a rare cruciform and is now under the care of The Churches Conservation Trust, a worthy body indeed.

[caption id="attachment_1334" align="aligncenter" width="1024" caption="St Andrew's Church, Grey Mare Hill, Shotley."][/caption]

In the church yard and pre dating the existing church is The Hopper Mausoleum built around 1760.  It was built to inter the remains of the Hopper family one-time owners of the nearby and once wealthy Black Headley Farm where my Great Grandparents lived and I believe, my grandmother was born.  Today was the first time I had realised the connection between this monument and my family.

While I was there, the architect in charge of the fabric of Durham Cathedral arrived to carry out a "condition survey" on behalf of the Trust and he kindly allowed me to see inside the church.  We also had a long and interesting chat about the Cathedral and several other small historic churches I knew.  An hour later, both frozen I made my way home for a nice hot drink.  The poor architect had to start his survey.  Sorry!!


[caption id="attachment_1335" align="aligncenter" width="680" caption="The Hopper Mausoleum, Grey Mare Hill."][/caption]