Photography Lesson #1

You may remember that a while ago I asked for people to donate or exchange creative skills with me. I wrote a post all about the adventures I would like to go on. You can read it here.

On Saturday morning I was lucky enough to be offered a beginners lesson in using my camera with Pete Fry.

We got up early, wrapped up warm and headed off to Seasalter. I love the beach in winter with it’s washed out colours. It was a misty morning across the marshland and perfect for some beginner shots.

Pete patiently explained how to use the exposure, shutter speed and ISO on my camera. I just experimented with what worked and what didn’t. How to make changes to get more interesting shots. I still have a lot to learn!

Its just a start but here are my 6 fave shots from the morning.

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Thanks to Pete for his patience and insights. If you would like to swap or donate me a creative experience please contact me below:

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The Owl and the Pussy Cat (re-imagined)

 

I
The Owl and the Pussy-cat went to sea
In a beautiful pea green boat,
They took some honey, but never had money,
Wrapped up in his old black coat.
The Owl looked up to the stars above,
And sang to a small guitar,
‘O lovely girl! Who never knew love,
What a beautiful girl you are,
You are,
You are!
What a beautiful girl you are!’

 

II
Puss said to the Owl, ‘You promise me true?
How charmingly sweet you sing!
We’ll run away! If you promise me this:
As my heart is a fierce fragile thing?’
They sailed away, for six years and a day,
To the house where the forest grew thick.
And there in a wood their haven stood.
They lit a fire and watched the flames flick,
Flames flick,
Flames flick,
They watched the flames flick.

 

III
‘Dear Cat, are you willing to sell me your trust?’
My trust?’ said the Puss, ‘I will.’
So he took it away, lived for the day
By the house that stood on the hill.
They dined on things grown, from what they had sown,
Which they ate with a borrowed spoon;
And hand in hand, on the edge of the land,
They danced by the light of the moon,
The moon,
The moon,
They danced by the light of the moon.

 

 

Flowers in December

Oh, oh, oh my heart. Mazzy Star so beautiful. I want to ride into the night on the back of a bike, go sit somewhere open and stare at the stars just because. I’d share an earphone, feeling the warmth of you next to me whilst listening to this. Hands, noses and lips cold, cheeks flushed pink. And I never thought I was a romantic. 

Before I let you down again
I just want to see you in your eyes
I would have taken everything out on you
I only thought you could understand

They say every man goes blind in his heart
And they say everybody steals somebody’s heart away
And I’ve got nothing more to say about it
Nothing more than you would me

Send me your flowers of your December
Send me your dreams of your candy wine
I got just one thing I can’t give you
Just one more thing of mine

They say every man goes blind in his heart
They say everybody steals somebody’s heart away
And I’ve been wondering why you let me down
And I been taking it all for granted

Thanksgiving

Some days/ weeks are a complete right off. I woke up this morning full of joy that I was meeting up with Beth. I moved my head and uh oh, ran straight downstairs to puke. Another migraine, I’m averaging one a week at the moment. My neck was stiff, I felt like I was on a boat at sea, reeling all over. Always in my right eyeball, it felt ready to explode. I looked for a meme to post and found this…

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Anyone who knows me will see it bears an uncanny resemblance. So anyway I took Imigram, it didn’t work, so I cancelled my day. I was supposed to be at physio for this very thing, but not today.

All day I’ve puked or slept. All day my dogs have cuddled me. I can’t tell you how thankful I am for their un-judgemental adoration. They know when you’re down and are there for you no matter. My two are naughty but they give so much love.

Recently, when I’ve been in crisis, the RSPCA helped me out big time. They took my two babies and housed them for weeks. Before this, when I got back from staying at my sisters, I was distressed to see that both had lost weight, and Ida had a terrible ear infection. Out of all the break up this was the worst bit, seeing that my pups had been neglected. Nothing makes me more angry. But they still show more love than you’d know and are my shadows.

The RSPCA looked after them whilst I got things together, and into a place of safety. After their stay they were returned to me as beautiful and healthy as I’d left them. They have a scheme which helps families in refuge and they agreed to help me. For this I will be eternally grateful. I have donated to them, though it’s not a lot, I will always be thankful to them. I hope in the future I will be in a position to be a foster carer. In the meantime if you can foster a dog or make a donation please think seriously about doing it.

My thanksgiving today goes out to my pups and the RSPCA.

 

3 things

Today I’m so exhausted and feel like it’s all a little bit of an uphill struggle. So posting will be short. I’m off prednisolone and as a result have lost lots of weight. But it does mean I’m exhausted and in pain. I kept it simple and made the most of it. I had three goals today:

  1. Walk
  2. Bake
  3. Make

I managed all three in a little way.

I slept most of the day. But there are small and big things to be grateful for:

  • Text convos with the fleabag
  • Coffee, sweet coffee
  • Mac & cheese 

Night all x

Shadow People

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She stirred and before she properly awoke, she sensed they were there,

Shifting shapes swam on the ceiling,

Their constitution nothing but swirls of sooty smoke.

 

She listened to their whispers and knew one day she would be the same,

Their path was blocked, that was all,

With tenderness she willed them on to their next.

 

Another time she stirred from her slumber ill at ease,

The acrid smog oozed from the walls,

It ran down the paint and slithered by her side.

 

She listened to its husks as it dripped poison in her ear,

Changing form it flitted between the faces she knew.

She thought of love and banished its black soul.

 

She sat up in a sweat, a dark figure lurked with lantern held high,

It shuffled and creaked and showed her no light,

Instead she saw a vision of unspeakable truths.

 

She fell back into the grips of flu and fever,

The night gave no mercy,

Not till morning came was she safe again.

 

The noise roused her from her sleep as it tapped on the window pane,

It’s face looked in and searched the seals for a gap,

Downstairs a record played.

 

She checked through every door, searched all the spaces,

But there was no one there,

Just the ghost of her childhood and something buried deep.

 

Sometimes the Shadow People came,

Each a creature of the night with a distinct intent.

Sometimes the Shadow People came and went again.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shadow_person

The Privateers 

This takes me back to long car journeys with Emma. More Bird loving…
Don’t sell me anything 

Your one time offer, so uncalled-for 

You call it peace of mind 
Cause I can see your house from here 

 Now all the leaves have fallen, dear 

I can see you’re just a little privateer 

As your confession draws more near
Time and again, I find I’m listless 

Or rather, fistless 

In time, oh, that’s what I find 
So carry me to Mecca 

With what you may divine 

Take me with you, take me with you 

Don’t leave me behind 
Oh cause I, I don’t want your life insurance 

Home, auto, health, flood, and fire insurance 

Oh, just make, please make this basic inference 

And speak of me in the present tense 
Oh cause I, I can see your ships from here 

Now all the weather’s so bright and clear 

I can see you’re just a little profiteer 

As your confession draws more near 
As your confession draws more near 
As your confession draws more near

All wrapped up

I get really excited when autumn arrives. Not only is it beautiful outdoors but I get to pull all my woollens out. Dress up in scarves and boots and gloves. Go on walks all snuggled in layers. Here’s some of my inspiration for being all wrapped up, from my Pinterest board. Enjoy 🍂🍄🍁🌾🍃


All images are taken from my Pinterest board. None were taken by me. For the originals please visit my board and follow the individual links.

I fell from a mountain.

I climbed higher and higher,

The air grew thinner and thinner,

Head spinning, chest groaning, heart bruised.

 

I tripped once or twice,

I’m sure my keys fell out in the night,

It was the longest day but still it’s dark.

 

We dined on food that looked as though it were made for gods,

It tasted sweet and hollow, we laughed,

The joke was on us, sickly and open.

 

I slept, napped, curled in a ball.

I woke and all the triumph shattered.

I knew once again what the last words were.

 

I practiced words across the bough,

I worked on self restraint.

Underneath I hated myself so much it let me love you.

 

The moon couldn’t wash it away,

My companions stared into my soul,

I’m sorry I whispered, I am.

 

The brass and beat reached the most it ever would,

I ruined the moment chatting about books in a portaloo.

I laughed when you slipped in the mud.

 

I fight the war you started,

I always saved you, you should have gone, I’m too far,

I’ve climbed out of reach and feeling wrong.

 

I am washed raw by the moon,

A storm rages in the morning light,

And I’ve got nobody on my side.

 

One rejection too many,

Why can’t anyone see I’ll never find my way?

From this moment I am lost.

 

Sunday is so far away,

All hammers and cursed mistakes.

I crawl on knees bloodied by moods.

 

I reached up one more precipice,

My hands are weak and cold on their own,

The nails ripped as short as you’d bite yours.

 

I love that hand, perfectly imperfect,

It could comfort when your being dished out pain.

Just scraps of memories, I can’t tell whats real.

 

I lit a candle to shield the shape shifters,

they spit vinegar into my ear,

I watch it burn away, the world long gone.

 

I close my eyes, I see all the mistakes,

I try to be wise, but I’m always learning.

See me at my weakest always.

 

I numb the pain till I cannot see,

Vomit rises in my mouth,

Something rushes in my ears, I cannot hear.

 

Are you feeling better now?

I don’t know, I stumble, I fall,

Over and over the way I came.

 

Sticks and stones break my bones,

Your words rip my skin,

It’s over, and over, it’s over.

 

This bit I can only do alone.

Some days are for warmth…

So today I woke up feeling pretty horrid. New meds are making me sleep for nearly 10 hours a night, and then groggy the next day. I guess this beats the 4 hours average I’ve had for the past few months.

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I’ve begun a new kinder morning routine. It mainly is about not rushing:

Wake Up | Check my journal (not phone) | Feed and let the dogs out | Enjoy coffee / breakfast | Put myself first with yoga or mindfulness | Get ready | Walk the dogs | Check the post | Plan meals and actions for the day

In today’s journal I had scheduled a Weight Watchers meeting, crafts with a friend, followed by a show at the theatre. After sleeping past the Weight Watchers meeting time, and walking the dogs, falling over in the mud, and nearly passing out I knew I wasn’t up to much. In the panic of pain and fatigue I cancelled everything.

Then I realised I did really want to see people and that I needed company and inspiration. I don’t know about you but I am constantly in battle with myself for shared time and alone time? So today I back tracked and rewrote the day. I’m sticking to 3 things at the moment so my new plan was:

  • Drive to the Cowshed to pick up craft materials
  • Meet with Helen, to eat her home made soup and chat and maybe craft
  • Make chickpea blondies

So I did all these things instead of a disaster it was wonderful. Driving through the autumn landscape in no hurry meant seeing the countryside in all it’s glory. Then getting home it’s all warm and cosy and the dogs were waiting.

Helen arrived with a box full of crafts, and her delicious homemade squash soup (I’ll endeavour to get the recipe). We chatted about life, and ideas, and drank coffee. We both, being spoonies, decide to keep the craft simple and make our own ‘advent calendars’. It was Helen’s idea as a way to be kind to ourselves. I provided the labels to write them on and we both came up with ideas for an action a day that would be treating or nourishing ourselves.

Thats all there is to it really. We wrote on luggage labels and decorated them with stickers. I ended up doing 31 to take me all the way to New Year, and have a whole month of adventures. The idea is to pick one each day to do. If it is completely impossible with your schedule we decided we would be allowed to swap one but you should then make time to fit in the discarded one so all the tasks are at least attempted throughout the month. I’ve decided to do mine with the food bank advent idea. In this I put an item of food into a box each day to donate to the local food bank.

Finally I made ‘chickpea blondies’ as a quick sweet treat, they sound odd but they are amazing. I found the recipe here. They are great for lazy days and you literally shove everything in the blender and bake. Oh and then eat of course, still warm from the pan with oozing bitter chocolate.

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What do you do to stay warm once the weather turns colder and the nights are shorter?