Saturday, 30 June 2012

A pair of shoes for Mr M

Last year we went up to North Wales for the Baptism of my youngest grandchild. While we were there my son had to go to the supermarket for some essentials for the food. Mr M went with him and came back with a new T-shirt and a pair of canvas shoes that he had bought in Asda. He has worn the T-shirt once but the shoes he has worn every day. Now they are paper thin soled and mud coloured even though they were blue when new.
such a cute little stallion

I love the peeling letters

Shadow take one

Shadow take two
We went to Asda "down Duffryn" - people who live in Newport will know exactly what I mean for the rest of you here's an explanation. Duffryn is an area of Newport. We never go up to Duffryn because it is on the levels. We go Up the Gaer, and out Ringland or out Alway but always down Duffryn.

Now where was I? Oh yes, Asda. We found the shoes that was easy but they didn't have the size he needed. They had smaller and larger but not it. I suggested that we could, perhaps go to Cwmbran to the Asda there and Mr M appeared to agree.

We got back in the car and headed up to Cwmbran but we took an unscheduled left turn that put us on a lane that led to the coast road to Cardiff. "Um, why are we going this way?" I asked as we squeezed past a white van coming in the opposite direction. "I thought we could go along the coast road, get a picture of a horse and then go to Penarth and photograph the pier." He said.

So that's what we did. We went to the Asda by Costco so we had a jacket potato for lunch as well as buying his new shoes (he hasn't done the dance yet) and then carried on to Penarth where I photographed the pier. Not a bad picture as I only had to contend with ten miles an hour. A traffic jam in Penarth! then on along the coast for a while before turning right and heading for Pontypridd and then a few more turns and twists brought us home via Machen, Rhiwderin and Basseleg.

I am still undecided about the shadow picture. I was fascinated by the way the shadows flickered across the dashboard but the picture is quite dark and really doesn't show what I want it to show.

The shadow on the rock is pretty good and I do like it but I wanted the dashboard one to work...:( I will have to read the destructions for my camera and see if I can't improve on the dashboard one. I have a while yet.

Monday, 25 June 2012

Busy Sunday

We had to go out on Sunday and while we were out Mr M decided to do a little detour and we stopped at the Visitor Centre for the Transporter Bridge
The Tranny, from the west bank of the river Usk
I don't know if you have heard about our bridge, I'll assume that you haven't and tell you a little about it.
It was designed by a frenchman to carry workmen from the west bank to the east bank of the river. The Council launched a competition because the bridge had to incorporate certain features into the design.
1. Tall sailing ships had to be able to sail under it at high tide (there is a 14.5metre tide on our river, the second highest in the world)
2. Carts and vehicles had to be able to cross using it.
3. It had to be usable at all states of tide and weather.
The design they chose is wonderful - and this was 1904 when the competition closed. A bogie runs on wheels along tracks high above the river. Suspended from this is a platform, called the gondola, the cars and people troop on through the gates. The driver gives the signal, the gates are closed and the bogie high up above our heads begins to move. The cables wind and across we go, suspended above the river by a few strings - they are pretty substantial cables but they look like string.
There are only eight transporter bridges left in the world - there is one in Middlesborough but I don't know if it still works or not. Ours came [pretty darned close to being dismantled not long ago and the council still cannot seem to get their act together and really promote this thing as an exciting tourist attraction. The opening hours change every week. The visitor Centre has four parking spaces in its teeny weeny car park and it is altogether a very uninviting place to try and visit. ~sigh~

After a brief stop at the Transporter Mr M took the pretty way home and surprised me by a sudden left turn into the local cemetery. "Why?" I asked. "We'll surely find an angel or two in here." he muttered and stopped in front of a whole flight of them. I was spoilt for choice!

We went home and I topped and tailed the gooseberries we picked and bought on Saturday and made four pounds of Gooseberry Chutney. We took the little bit of left over, there's always a little bit of left over isn't there? We took it with us when we went to the Bluefunnels for dinner and my Cuz said "Wow, that's got a bit of a kick!"
My sense of smell is off at the moment and the sense of taste is just not reliable. I tasted it and thought it was just like eating the smell of Mr Sheen polish so I have to rely on my taste testers.

So that was Sunday. Two more pictures for the scavenger hunt see here and some Christmas presents made and in the cupboard to mature. I even made pretty labels - oooh, I should take a photograph!

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Scavenger hunt - the start

I have already said that We are going to have a go at Rinda's scavenger hunt because Mr M was keen. Today we went out to find a PYO farm to get some gooseberries. There was an advert in the local paper for a place just outside Abergavenny and as it wasn't raining when we set out, we thought we would see if we could find it.
There were detailed directions in the advertisement, but for that to be useful a person has to remember to cut out the advert AND take it with them when they go looking. To spare you the details of our journey through the lanes outside Abergavenny I'll just say that it only took four U-turns before we read the signs correctly and found the farm.
A Pheasant not flying away
 It was kind of useful though, because we got a photograph of a pheasant - yes, I know that isn't on the scavenger hunt but it has long been an ambition of Mr M to get a picture of a pheasant that wasn't a blurred blob disappearing into the distance. 

A heck of a place for a bus stop

We also got a picture of a red, double-decker bus in a field. We don't know why it was there but we just had to slow down and take a picture.
That is quite a key phrase, "we just had to slow down." This is because most of my photography has to be through the windscreen of the car at an average speed of 40 mph. I have been known to hand Mr M a squeegee thingy and tell him that if I am to continue as chief photographer I need clean windows.

The Church of St Brigid, Skenfrith

This is one for the scavenger hunt. A Church, Chapel, Cathedral, Mosque or Temple.
This is The Church of St Brigid, Skenfrith. It is a fabulous little place and well worth a visit if you are ever in the area. The village of Skenfrith clusters around the castle - a magnificent ruin. The church is a short walk along the lane - a hundred yards at most. It has a 14th century cope in a display case within the church, unless they have finally managed to get the funding for the new display case and conservation work on the cope. In which case there will be a space where it used to be.
The other claim to fame for St Brigid's Church is that it featured in an episode of Dr Who. The episode was called "Amy's Choice".

shopping at the roadside
Another for the scavenger hunt: A Roadside stand selling something

This is also in Skenfrith, they sell tea and coffee and crafts and plants and delicious cakes and sandwiches. It is open on Saturday and Sunday during the summer and all profits go to the church and the village hall.

A border.

Mr M slowed right down so that I had time to turn the camera on - the only downside to digital photography - I even managed to take two pictures before we were past it and gaining speed up the hill. He doesn't like to hang around, my husband.
A symbol of my nation

"Give me your camera and hold this!" he said as we went into Oakchurch farm shop. So I gave him my camera and held the leek. The expression on my face says "I am doing this because I love and trust you"...... I do look a bit like a pillow half stuffed into a pillow case don't I? and I seem to be a vision in pink today, not sure why.
Anyway, when he had taken the picture and given me back the camera he then replaced the leek on the shelf and I was still none the wiser so I asked.
"Why did I have to hold a leek?"
The look on his face told me that I was just not paying attention here. "A photograph of you with something that symbolises your nation!" he said, very slowly so that dimbo here could understand. I paused, and then realised that having read the list once or twice now he has it committed to memory. So not a bad day out altogether. We picked gooseberries, bought strawberries from the same place - we are not built for picking strawberries, they are too far down. We bought Rhubarb and apples and lemons from the Oakchurch shop and decided that we really like the stuff they have there but we need to take the cold box and the freezer box with us next time. We had a delightful afternoon out and took a few good pictures.

Four down seventeen to go.

Friday, 22 June 2012

Storage Solutions

the stuff under the table belongs to my cousin
The new Scrap365 is on sale - I love that magazine! and on their blog here they ask us about our storage solutions. I do the same as most people I suppose. I use the clear plastic food containers that our chinese takeaway is delivered in.
They are perfect for small stuff and you can see through them. I find  if I put stuff into solid containers it is like a vanishing trick and I forget I have stuff. so no drawers or boxes that can't be clearly marked or that don't sit in my direct line of sight. I have a "really useful" storage box full of these wonderful containers. They don't smell of food after a go through the dishwasher and they are just perfect for me.

So there ya go, my storage solution. I am sure more people will join in with this so pop over to Scrap365's blog and take a look

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Scavenger Hunt!!!

I have decided to take part in Rinda's scavenger hunt this year. I saw some of the pictures that Sian and Mel put onto their blogs and thought what a fun project it seemed to be.
Today I saw that Rinda had published this year's list so I showed it to Mr M and he said "Print it off and don't forget it when we go out."
I am taking this to mean that we are in it!!
As I don't go out unless I am with someone, this is going to be a good challenge.

Looking forward to the summer now