Mundanity Monday

I missed a couple of days shooting B&W last week, but resumed half way through, so a couple of extra ones here this week.

Last Saturday we treated ourselves to rib eye steak. I’m crap at cooking steak in spite of religiously following Gorgon Ramsey’s video. 😦

on Sunday Sophie and I had a camera outing to the Rising Sun country park, (report to come on the universe blog).

Washed my hair on Monday

Went to work on Tuesday morning

Checked out the Christmas lights on Wednesday

Bought some flowers on Thursday

a coal~tit visited on Friday

Frego & I got new camera’s on Saturday 🙂

Sophie and I went out on Sunday

I know there’s not meant to be people in them but it’s my project so I can break the rules if I want 😀

laters gaters!




Thursday Thoughts

The weather turned very rainy over the last couple of days, I thought it would never stop last night, but this morning was beautifully sunny at 7.30am and I thought ‘yippee!’ I’ll do some photography, but by 10am the clouds had come back, and the wet stuff started all over again.  Never mind, the weekend is going to be sunny, though cold, and Sophie and I are going to the Diwali festival in Sunderland, am so looking forward to photographing it, as I’ve never been to one before.  I’ll save the info for the Report.  I did however notice a lady chaffinch visiting the happy eater tree today, along with a robin, blue-tit and great tit.  They all move so fast, and it was raining so the photos are not brilliant, but I do like to try!

blue tit
great tit
lady chaffinch

The robin made me laugh, he wasn’t happy about Lady Chaffinch visiting, and had a flurried charge at her a couple of times, he doesn’t bother with the tits, I think they are far too quick, and he hides when the spuggies come as they are even more feisty than he is!

I also spent a goodly amount of time shooting one of Phil’s guitars. I have taken pictures of his guitars before, and we have the Rickenbacker on a canvass on the wall. Phil said now he also wants one of his fender, but wasn’t happy with the shadow that cuts off the curve of it at the bottom end. That happened because I shot it in a completely dark room and light painted it from the side.  So today I got out my black background, shut myself in the ‘dark room’ and reshot it but this time light painted both sides.  I’ve just shown him the re-do and now he thinks he likes the original best! Maybe! 😬. I’ve read professional photographers blogs where they moan about ‘difficult’ clients!  😀 😀

Give us a vote, the original is on the left, and my reshoot on the right, which one do you like best and why? I can’t choose, I took them both!

It’s Thanksgiving in America, and my blog reader and Facey pages are full of Happy Thanksgivings, with lots of references to Turkey’s and Pie’s.  Of course over here we have a Harvest Festival of Thanksgiving on or near the Sunday of the harvest moon that occurs closest to the autumnal equinox. Harvest Thanksgiving in Britain also has pre-Christian roots when the Saxons would offer the first sheaf of barley, oats, or wheat to fertility gods. When the harvest was finally collected, communities would come together for a harvest supper. When Christianity arrived in Britain many traditions remained, and today Harvest Thanksgiving is marked by churches and schools in late September/early October (same as Canada) with singing, praying and decorating with baskets of food and fruit to celebrate a successful harvest and to give thanks.  Collections of food are usually held which are then given to local charities which help the homeless and those in need.  Not quite the same Turkeyfest and Pumpkin Pie thing that the Americans do! And we are very quiet about it, at least I’ve never seen Happy Harvest Festival meme’s everywhere!  But each to his own, and I wish all my American bloggers a Happy Thanksgiving Day.

Thursday Thoughts

This week I have been thinking about moles. Not the one’s that live underground, but the brown, raised bits of skin that some people have lots of, and some people don’t.  I only have four, had them all my life and they’ve never changed in appearance or done anything weird.  Last week I discovered a new one, and it is not like the others, I don’t like it, so I’m off to the doc’s tomorrow to get it checked out.  Of course I’ve googled, and am reasonably certain it’s just a growing older thing, but in my younger days I was a sunbed user and sunbather when ever possible, so need to put my mind at rest.  If only I’d known back then how ultra violet rays can harm you, I would have shunned them, which I have done ever since it became a thing. Fingers crossed I didn’t do myself in!

I’ve also been thinking about Game of Thrones TV programme, as it’s back on the TV next week, and Phil and I have been with it since the beginning.  I am one of those who read all the books, and have been really happy with how  the TV series has adapted them for the small screen, and overtaken George RR Martin with the story, as he is taking a long time to finish the series of books. It’s now become cool to never have seen it, as it always does when something is very hyped and very popular, but this has been a quality series from the beginning, and the ‘cool’ people have missed out on TV excellence, a rarity in my view. Stunning scenery and filming, great characters, sublime acting, and an alternative history in which all sorts of allegories to the real world can be found if you want to, well maybe not dragons, but hey! DRAGONS!!  🙂

I have also been thinking, unexpectedly, about travelling again.  Not too far this time, a 250 mile drive down south next Friday, to dogsit my sons Staffy, Lola, as he and his girlfriend are going on holiday to Amsterdam and can’t find anyone local to do it.  As it’s his birthday I’ve stepped up to do it.  Phil is on nights the week I’m there so can’t come along, so I will have to amuse myself.  There are a few National Trust properties nearby so at least I’ll be off out photographing, and the temperatures south are usually better than here so that’s a bonus.  I have a couple of friends I can hopefully visit too, so it won’t be too bad.  The only thing is that the weekend I go is also the weekend of the Sunderland Airshow, and for various reasons I’ve never got to see it although I’ve lived here 13 years, maybe am destined never to do so!

The Happy Eater tree hasn’t had any exciting visitors of late, just the usual band of spuggies, blackbirds pigeons and collared doves.  The bullfinch hasn’t been back that I know of, but I did spot a lady chaffinch one evening

Whilst I was birdwatching one afternoon I spotted something under my car, which is parked next to the tree

so I banged on the window as it’s obviously lying in wait to snatch a birdy, but got an ‘I’m just here, minding my own business’look’

he sauntered off nonchalantly after a while. Nothing to see here folks 🙂

My shout out to great blogs this week is going to Sarah, Choppy & Schooner, who can be found at Travels With Choppy, click through the name to the site.  Sarah lives with Choppy the dog and Schooner, her chap’s cat, the photo’s and jokes she tells with them will make you laugh.  They live in Wisconsin but also travel, and there’s never a dull moment on the blog.  Sarah also writes travel books which have great info in them. Tell her I sent ya!


British Summer Time

It was my day off today and really hoped to go out with the rollei, but we had a day of incessant rain, again.  Still, I was determined to do some photography, so invented a waterproof housing for the fuji (a freezer bag and cat collar) attached it to my trusty tripod, donned my waterproof jacket, and sallied forth into the garden.   Within 5 minutes I discovered my jacket had the equivalent waterproof capabilities of a colander, but hey ho, sometimes you have to suffer for your art. 🙂

potato plant flowers

The rain doesn’t stop the visitors to the Happy Eater tree.

sparrow and starling sharing a moment
blackbird and a beak of bugs
juvenile blackbird

The weather forecast for the rest of the week is not much better, oh well, maybe the week after will be better!



Tuesday Tuck Shop

It’s been a busy day at the happy eater tree, and because I haven’t been too well have had a gentle day and sat for a while with my camera waiting to see who turned up at The Happy Eater Tree.  A new arrival today,  I think this is a coal tit, at least on the RSPB identifier it’s the only one that comes close.

Boy did he move fast and it was hard to get a decent shot in focus, but these are the two best ones.

There are always blue tits, and also great tits, these are my ‘regulars’,

Also Fatchick sparrow turned up, followed by Mrs.Spuggy who looked at me as if to say “Will this never end?”

For the past few years we’ve had a breeding pair of robins visit, but this year they’ve been very elusive.  Today I managed to see one, well chuffed!

and after I got back from the local shop I was excited to see a return visit from the bullfinch at the feeder. I knew if I got out of the car it would disturb him and he’d fly off, so I gingerly crawled quietly out of the passenger door, kept my head down and went round the back of the house, in through the back door and crawled to the window and my camera as he was still there and got some shots of him. Half hour later he was back with Mrs. Bullfinch (I think, as she’s a paler colour), and then he came back again later in the afternoon by himself, so hopefully it won’t be the last time I see him.

All the pictures are click throughable for the bigger versions.  A good 1/2 hour at The Happy Eater 🙂



Thursday Thoughts

Mostly today I’ve been thinking I don’t like how hot it is! 🙂

Of course it’s impossible not to think about the Manchester Bombing, but my thoughts on that are not so much the incident but the awful news reporting that goes on ad infinitum, as they always do when an incident happens. I find it annoying, they seem to be wallowing in it, interviewing anyone and everyone in a 50 mile radius, a reporter in every town that has a victim, people crying,talking heads, on and on ad nauseam. It even has me writing latin phrases and that is never good for me. I am sympathetic to anyone involved, and appreciate the praise given to the emergency services and all the people who stepped up and helped, but I think this on going news thing only encourages the suicide bombers/ISIS, they must love all this exposure.  Anyway enough, I will rant all night if I don’t stop now 🙂

Did I say I don’t like this gas mark 10 effect going on?  From 16 C (60.8 USA 🙂 ) to 28C (82F) in the space of 2 days,  :/  I need acclimatisation times!

I’ve been thinking of photography too, got my rollei film shots back, and also went out down the beach and shot a new roll on it, love it 🙂 More on that tomorrow.

I took my fuji with me but only used it to take a shot of my old pal Frego. She wanted to go surfing but there wasn’t any!

I also managed a couple of  birdy shots this week, my Happy Eater tree is doing big business!

Feed me now Seymour!

Sid the Spuggy

Who you lookin’ at?





Thursday Thoughts

I’m all about the busy today, we have family coming over for dinner and I’m cooking Chinese.

Yesterday I did the big shop but had to go back for stuff I’d forgotten 🙄 so  was up early to get to the supermarket and back home. I got new flowers sorted in the house

and then got cracking on dinner. Chinese food is quick to cook but it’s all about the preparation.

after 3 hours this

became this

I am slowly moving my mosaic stuff into the shed, it’s nearly finished now, just need the sparky to wire it all up, but nice to see my unfinished table top and am excited about getting it done at long last. It’ll still take a long while though!

I love my new net curtains for the shed 🙂

the birdy’s are having chicks all over the place and my happy eater tree is also as busy as me. I haven’t managed to catch a shot yet of our new regular visitor, a chaffinch but caught Mummy Spuggy feeding her chick (which looked twice the size of her!).

So just a quick post, got to put a face on and do my hair and get cooking!