Friday, 14 May 2021

Astrid's Photo Scavenger Hunt - 14/05/2021

Friday again, and this time the choice of prompt is 'Mirror'.  Sounds simple enough especially when we have a lot of mirrors around the  house.  But to find something interesting and to take a photograph without including myself was a problem at first.

This  picture was taken with the help of B who suggested it then helped get both me and the ceiling light out of the picture.  The flowers are some he has bought for me for my birthday. 

My next image is a type of 'mirror image' of a different sort.  I have mentioned this before and used a similar picture about rhinos. As you know they are on the endangered species red list as they are being killed for their horns.   When we watch any of the sites and  a rhino appears on the screen the camera is immediately moved, often straight up to the sky, or rapidly sideways.  They don't want the poachers to know where the rhinos are living.  So when we get a chance to take a picture we feel very lucky.  This pair of almost identical rhino, looking ghostly white on the night camera, had suddenly popped out of the undergrowth for a drink.


The next mirror effect is again from my  selection, this time the mirror is the still water of the dam perfectly reflecting the towering giraffe in the evening light.

Finally a pair of soap stone carvings from Zimbabwe of hornbills. They almost make a mirror image, one is just a little larger than the other. 

Last night I suddenly remembered............I do have another mirror picture. How could I forget. So this morning we hurriedly got out the old wedding album from the box of all the families wedding albums and yes, I was right, I did have a couple of mirror pictures.  This was taken 59 years ago in my parents house in Borrowdale, Salisbury, Southern Rhodesia (Harare, Zimbabwe today).  I can't believe it was so long ago. How time flies. 

Well that's my lot for this week.  Now to see what everyone else has posted.  As from Monday many restrictions are being lifted and a bit of normality will return to life.  Just hope everyone plays ball and Covid numbers stay down.  Take care and have a good week.

Friday, 7 May 2021

Astrid's Photo Scavenger Hunt - 7/05/2021


This weeks title rather threw me.  I am not often lost for ideas but this one stumped me until I had a text conversation with my friend Threads Through My Life and she made me think clearly.  I'm afraid most of my pictures are not about SPACE  but rather the lack of it!!

My first picture is my banner picture above.  We love the wide open SPACES in Northumberland that go on and on forever, both sand and skies, and not having to go during school holidays the beaches are gloriously empty except for occasional horses and their riders and dog walkers.  This picture shows Bamburgh beach and castle.

My next group of pictures is one I am sure you will all recognise - a picture of an Amazon parcel.  This one rather took the cake.  The parcel arrived and I had no idea what was in such a large box. I left it standing for a while before opening it with gloves on (this was earlier when we were all being ultra careful, before inoculations)

I then after carefully opening it I found this ....................

I'm sure you know what is coming next ....................lots of SPACE   

 around a new strap for my watch!!! 


I thought it would arrive in a padded envelope - I should have known better!!
On the plus side - it was the correct strap and fitted beautifully.

My next picture shows more SPACE - or rather the lack of it again.

Let me explain - whenever we went to Northumberland for a week to stay in a lovely farm cottage our son would look after Jak.  We lived in the same block of flats, we were at one end and DnJ at the other.  D would come in daily and feed Jak and let him out into the garden.  This lasted for a couple of days then Jak would have had enough. By about Tuesday he was fed up with us being away, cross too I would imagine, so he would move in to DnJ's flat.  He loved the dogs, and they tolerated him.  He would scratch at their front door to be let in then would go into the office where the dogs had an old settee.  He would jump up on to it, much to their disgust and make himself at home.

They are not too happy about him being there.

Till eventually Roxy would give up her SPACE and leave it all to Jak!! One smart cat!! 

 Don't know why  he looks a bit bald in this picture.  

This next picture shows a little baby elephant trying to find his SPACE at the waterhole.  He is so little and the others so big.

My next choice is also from my Africam collection.  I have used a similar picture before showing an assortment of animals all vying for SPACE at the water hole.

There are elephant,  nyala, impala and waterbuck all mixing together as water is getting short in the dry season.

My final picture/s is a different type of SPACE...... the Springbok Flats.  They stretch for about 100 miles from Zebediela where we lived, towards Pretoria.  Their name indicates an abundance of springbok** but now few remain except in game reserves.  It is extremely flat so we could see for miles. This was the gorgeous view we had from our garden.   I took these photographs as a panoramic set when I did not have that feature on my camera so I have just lined them up to scan.

** famous for their 'pronking' , strange leaps into the air as they run, lifting all four feet off the ground simultaneously, with legs held in a stiff position. Pronk is from the Afrikaans word describing showing off.

Now off to see what everyone else has posted this week. 

Thursday, 29 April 2021

Astrid's Photo Scavenger Hunt Challenges - 29/04/2021

This week Astrid has challenged us to find pictures relating to Bubbles.  I knew I had one of Roxy and I was delighted when in my search for 'bubbles'  a couple turned up  I had long forgotten about.

Bubbles  1

The first of these surprise 'bubble' picture was of  dear old Roxy when she was very young (and much slimmer) taken in her  kitchen. 

Bubbles 2

We met Bubbles when we started going to buy bird food at our local pet shop a few years ago now.  He is a tough street cat who has chosen to take up residence in the pet shop where he is well fed and earns his keep by keeping the mice population in check.  He also thinks he is in charge of quality control of all cat and dog beds and they have to keep removing cat fur from them.  

He is rather rounded (I'm being polite - he is very rotund!!) and been put on diet.  His slimming food is weighed out for him but he has found out how to stand up tall and help himself to the open containers of cat food that customers can scoop out and buy by weight and completely ignores his special diet food.  The owners are considering putting clear plastic covers on the bins to keep him out!!   It doesn't help that he has a following of ladies that bring him in treats, fish, chicken etc.

He wears a lovely red collar with a tartan bow and we learnt today that he has just recently started to purr when they stroke him - after a number of years living in luxury. The shop assistants can pick him up but he keeps himself aloof from the customers.

When I took this picture I had caught him 'mid wash', hence the rather annoyed expression on his face!!


Bubbles 3

The second and by far the best 'surprise' picture is one of Katie taken in Salisbury,  Southern Rhodesia (Harare, Zimbabwe) in the garden of a house we were temporarily living in while we were waiting for our house to become vacant.  

Bubbles 4

I thought I had finished with three bubble pictures when I happened to look at my old favourite site and there was this elephant knee deep in the waterlilies blowing bubbles in the Tau water hole and I just had to include him.  So I have just retrieved my blog to add this one last picture.


Well that's my lot for this week.  Now I'm off to see what other bloggers have posted.  

Thursday, 22 April 2021

Astra's Photo Scavenger Hunt Challenge 22/04/2021


This week Astrid has selected the word 'Earth' as our prompt.  Much to my surprise when I switched on my computer this morning I saw a new Google Doodle and it said it was EARTH DAY.  I had no idea there was such a special day.  Coincidence Astrid - or well planned choice of word??!!

At the moment I am busy in our garden repotting all my shrubs as I have not done some of them for a couple of years and they are getting pot bound.  We always make our own compost and this year have a lovely lot of rich brown EARTH to use.

What is it about toddlers and mud (wet EARTH!!).  This picture was taken when we lived in Salisbury, Rhodesia (now Harare, Zimbabwe). Katie is making the flower bed all muddy and little brother is eating the mud!! I'm not sure who was having the most fun.  

Then of course there is another kind of earth - the one in an electrical plug.

Finally, there is our Earth.  I was not able to book a seat on any space flights so I have zapped one off NASA'S  free images.

"The Blue Marble is an image of Earth taken on December 7, 1972, from a distance of about 29,000 kilometres (18,000 miles) from the planet's surface.  It was taken by the crew of the Apollo 17 spacecraft on its way to the Moon and is one of the most reproduced images in history.

It mainly shows the Earth from the Mediterranean Sea to Antarctica.  This was the first time the Apollo trajectory made it possible to photograph the south polar ice cap, despite the Southern Hemisphere being heavily covered in clouds.  In addition to the Arabian Peninsula and Madagascar, almost the entire coastline of Africa is clearly visible.  The Asian mainland is on the horizon."   (Wikipedia)

Now off to see what everyone else has done this week.
Keep well and see you next Friday. xx 

Thursday, 15 April 2021

Astrid's Photo Scavenger Hunt 15/04/2021

This weeks prompt chosen by Astrid is 'The Colour Purple'.  Fortunately I do still  have a few pictures that will fit that heading so here goes.


 While searching through my archives - fortunately all saved on a Photo Stick - I noticed how the flame on this burning Christmas pudding was a shade of purple.

Another Christmas picture, this time of a lovely felt heart tree decoration made for me a few years ago by Kate.  It always has pride of place on our tree each year.

A photographs of our daughter-in-law's wellies in the garden of a holiday cottage in Northumberland taken some years ago.

More purple pictures this time of flowers taken around gardens and places we have visited.

   This picture was taken in The Shambles during a visit to York some years ago.  These people always fascinate me.  I know I could not keep still that long, my nose would itch!!!

Remember those gorgeous wellies in an earlier picture..................well look who is wearing them  now!!

and now wearing our son's wellies too!!! 

Roxy, their dear chocolate labrador, who is sadly no longer with us.  

Now off to see what everyone else has posted.  Keep well and stay safe.  Many regulations have been lifted here in the UK this week so what with that and the spring weather, life does seem a little brighter. xx

Thursday, 8 April 2021

Astrid's Photo Scavenger Hunt -9 March 2021

The word selected by Astrid this week is Farm.  As we live opposite a small holding and then a couple of farms on the other side of the road from us and they are part of our daily view out of our window, I thought it may be appropriate to use photographs taken at different times of the year of 'our farms'. 


I love the fields when they are this gorgeous shade of spring green.  The farmer originally kept a few cattle and free range chickens on his field.  One silly hen kept getting out and laying eggs in a clump of grass next to the path way.  Only once did we see anyone pick up the eggs as they walked past.  Most just ignored them. 


When we have heavy rain a lake forms just beyond the old railway line.  It is often covered with different water birds.   Here the mist has come down as far as the canal and hidden Weets Hill in the background


Every year we watch the hay being made in the field.  First cut,  dried, then scattered  again, then put into lines ready for the bailing machine that  scoops it up and spits it out the other side in neat round bales.  Eventually they are picked up again, wrapped in black plastic and left for collection to be taken to the farm yard. 


It is with mixed feeling when the trees start to change to their beautiful autumnal colours.  I love to see the change but know that summer is ending and winter is on its way.

Early morning autumn mist over the distant canal.


I just love to see the snow when it covers the farm fields and the hill beyond.  One year when the farmer had just started keeping sheep in the field on his smallholding we were expecting heavy snow.  So with the help of his teenage children he built a shelter for the sheep out of bales of straw and covered the top with a blue tarpaulin.  

But the silly sheep just saw it as a huge supply of hay and started munching on it first on the outside, then they moved inside and were eating it there.  The roof began to sag.



But I must say, in the farmers' defence, that we did have very heavy snow overnight.

The trees in our garden that same morning.

Well now off to see what everyone else has done.   HERE is the link back to Astrid's site.   Keep well and see you next week with The Colour Purple.  

Friday, 2 April 2021

Astrid Dragon's Photo Hunt - 02.04.2021

Welcome to Astrid's first Photo Hunt.  She has selected the word Chocolate for our first prompt; a very appropriate word.  I'm sure that where ever you are, we all associate chocolate Easter Eggs and Hot Cross Buns with this time of the year.

We have always given our grandsons either a chocolate egg or sometimes a chocolate rabbit and this year is no exception.  I have been itching to buy them ever since they came into the shops.  B kept telling me that they are grown up now and I don't need to get them an Easter egg but eventually gave in.  We are expecting to see them this weekend with their girl friends as we are allowed to see people so long as we stick to the rule of 6 and are outside in the garden.   My picture shows three chocolate bunnies, two blue and one pink and one box of milk free eggs for one GF who has to avoid dairy products. I had a job to take the photograph, the foil wrapping was so shiny.

Thanks Astrid for taking over the reins from Kate.  Look forward to joining in each week.  Wishing you all a very happy and blessed Easter.  Lets hope this is the start of things improving for us all, where ever we live.🌼

Thursday, 25 March 2021

Kate's (Last) Picture Scavenger Hunt .26/13/2021

Sadly this is to be Kate's final Picture Scavenger Hunt due to her very busy life these days.  It has been fun though I did find Fridays came around very quickly!! Good job Threads through my Life aka Lovely Lady kept me on my toes.   

My selection of pictures seem to  be more black/white than light/dark, or maybe there is not too big a difference.   Anyway, here goes...........


On one visit to  our son and daughter-in-law in Scotland they took us to see The Kelpies near Falkirk, the largest equine sculpture in the world. They are 30 metres high and are a monument to Scotland's horse powered industrial heritage.  For those who do not know what a Kelpie is (I didn't)  they are a shape-changing aquatic spirit of Scottish legend. They are said to haunt rivers and streams, usually in the shape of a horse.

I took some lovely pictures of them, in spite of the rain that day, but on getting back to their home our son took my phone and using some app which he says is on my phone (but I have never found it again) turned all my photographs into these strange black and white pictures.  They show both dark and light of the same subject and well as a picture at the end just so you can see what they should look like.  They are amazing, makes one feel very small next to them as they are huge.

What they should really look like.  If you are ever in that part of Scotland they and the Falkirk wheel are really worth the visit - free of charge too!! 

My next Light/dark photograph is one I took over the Christmas period when we made a large silver star to hang in our window.  I fortunately found some very tiny LED lights that I could put around the edges which outlined the star beautifully.  

 The star hanging in the window with a winter sunset behind it.  It was not dark enough yet for the lights to show.

A picture I have used before but I think it shows light and dark in a most beautiful way.  A lone heron in the evening sunset at Tau Game Reserve, South Africa.

And finally......................

A saddle back stork meeting a lone buffalo at Nkorho Game Lodge Waterhole.

Hello - who are you? 

I'm off...... there are two of you!!! 

Thank you Kate for running the photo treasure hunt for so long.  It has given us nearly five years of fun searching through our archives or going out to take the relevant photographs.   We have also kept in touch with  bloggy friends and made new  ones. It has been fun and I wish Astrid of Dragon Stitches and Stuff by Astrid best of luck hosting the blog and sure she will keep it going for us to continue with our frantic searches for the relevant photographs on a Thursday night.   Good luck with all your new ventures.  Look forward to life's restrictions being lifted  so we can  say .....see ya around🧡  xxx

        Now off to see what everyone else has done this week.