I went for a short break away, I’ll post about it soon but for now here’s a couple of photos of the beautiful sunrise I saw from the plane.
Disney donated some free Frozen theatre tickets to my workplace, and I was lucky enough to get my hands on some. My nieces (aged 7 and 9) had been asking to go to the theatre for a while, so when I got these I decided to take them. My nieces had never been to a theatre in London before, so they were excited for the evening out.
They dressed in pretty blue and pink dresses, and with backpacks full of snacks. We made our way to the theatre, and arrived in good time. The theatre was quite a grand building with fancy reception and hallway spaces. I didn’t take many photos as I had to keep an eye on the girls.
We had quite good seats with a clear view. I could also spot lots of other girls dressed in Frozen outfits which was sweet. My nieces enjoyed the show, but by the end they were pretty tired as it was quite long and then a journey home from London.
Here’s one more photo, it’s Elsa’s Frozen dress which was really sparkly and pretty.
I visited a light art installation by Anthony James which is currently being shown at Marble Arch. It’s called Light field. I really enjoy light art, especially if creates optical effects.
Looking into the hexagonal shapes made it look like the space went on forever. There was a similar styled longer shape too. I also liked the square boxes, all placed in a uniform way. The boxes changed colour in time to some music being played, which I found quite relaxing to watch.
The exhibition is at the Mound and is free. Worth a look I think.
Summer in London has not been great this year weather wise. It’s been fairly cool and overcast most days, so when the sun came out bright and hot towards the end of summer we decided to make the most of it. The nearest coast to us is Southend on Sea so my family and I made decided to take a trip.
While we waited for others to arrive we wandered around the shops. I saw these mask shaped earrings that I thought were interesting.
When everyone had arrived we had a quick lunch and then made our way towards the pier, which is said to be the longest pleasure pier in the world at 1.33 miles long. The sky was bright and the sea was a beautiful blue and with a cool breeze we all set off.
At the end of the pier we all treated ourselves to ice creams and slushies, and taking in the beautiful blue sea, skies and sun.
After a rest, we sent my mum and the kids on the train back to shore and the rest of us walked. With the sun now low in the sky and the tide going out, the light cast some lovely silhouettes and shadows on the water.
We were pretty tired after that and after a quick visit to the gift shop we headed home for an even bigger family gathering and much needed dinner.
I went to Maldon recently with family as the weather was nice. We headed to Maldon with Hythe Quay nearby. There were lots of sailing boats, the masts and sails high above our heads. I love the colours and details of the embellishments of the boats.
There were boat trips being taken down Blackwater river, which looked quite fun.
We opted just to sit and watch, enjoy our picnic and the cool breeze.
We didn’t spend too long here as there wasn’t much to do, so having rested we made our way back to the car. It was nice to see the calming blues of the water even for just a short while.
Spring is in full swing here in London so went to our local parks and into my garden to see what kinds of flowers I could spot.
The earliest flowers to be seen are the daffodils and croci. There were swathes of bright yellow daffodils in some parks that I visited, which was always pleasant to see. The flowers blooming early in my garden was a huge camellia tree with vibrant perfect looking pink flowers and magnolias. These magnolias were on a huge tree I spotted in someone’s front garden. It was quite a magnificent sight.
Later the flowers that opened up were varied and some I haven’t seen before like Blue Pasque flowers which I thought were quite fascinating. And as always a tree full of blossoms is a sure sign that Spring is here.
I’m lucky to have a few parks where I live and am able to go for long walks with lots of visual stimulus to enjoy. I always find myself stopping to tale a closer look at flowers I come across, each that brings it’s own beauty and joy.
I haven’t taken any macro photos in a while, so when I bought my mum some flowers there were some lovely rich violet anemones also known as blue poppies that I thought were stunning and deserved a closer look.
I love the detail and texture of the petals and the indigo pollen that has fallen on to some of them. The small cluster of stamen in the centre create a balance against the smooth simple petals. And the yellow stigma is a nice contrast to the violet.
Even before fully open the petals seem to look like they are hiding a treasure in the centre.
These flowers are a real joy to look at and were a real pleasure to photograph. I hope to do take some more macro photos soon.
The new year in the UK has been a slow one. There is another national lockdown to try and curb the ongoing pandemic and with the cold days it feels quite grim at times. I’ve been trying my best to keep positive though and nothing helps me more than being active. In light of this I decided to bundle up and visit one of our local parks. Valentines park was voted one of the 10 best in the country last year, so I always enjoy my visits as there’s always lots to see.
As I arrived at the park the lingering cold mist was clearing and the sun was beginning to break through the clouds. The huge boating lake at front of the park was starting to pick up colours of blue in the sky.
I walked to the far side of the park where there’s an old house called Valentines mansion, built in 1696 which still looks pretty grand. It’s now used for events but it’s a really elegant feature to the area. Nearby is a vegetable garden that is still in use, although there’s nothing growing now as it’s winter. There’s also plenty of cheeky squirrels around looking for food.
One of the things I really like about this park is just how varied the trees and wildlife is. There’s plenty of geese, ducks and smaller birds, and the trees seem to come in all shapes and sizes.
Having taken a few snaps as I walked around the park and starting to feel quite cold I headed home. I’m sure I’ll be back soon, as not only is this lockdown likely to last a while yet but the park is so vast there’s plenty still to see.
On our drive back to London from Scotland we decided to make a stop at the Lake District. I’ve wanted to go to the Lakes for years so I was really looking forward to it. We were lucky with the weather too, as it was bright, sunny and a complete contrast to the day before at Loch Lomond.
We drove to one part of the area called Ullswater and got out to have a look around. Here there was a pier and a gift shop alongside a brilliant blue lake. Walking around the lake the scenery was just beautiful with vibrant blues and greens everywhere you looked.
Having walked for a while the kids were getting tired and the older ones getting bored (teenagers eh!) so we headed back to the car. We next drove to another part of the Lakes and this time leaving the grumpy teenagers behind with their gadgets we went for another walk.
We came across a couple of families that were getting their boats into the water at a part of the lake that was low enough to do so. We watched for a while intrigued to see that people did this.
After some time we continued down a road and then some smaller paths. It was quieter and less busy, and anyone we did pass said hello which we thought was very friendly. There were also people swimming in this part of the lake as it was less deep. My niece found some blackberries which I helped her pick and we also came across some strange rock formations. No idea what these were for.
We eventually went back to the car to check up on the teenagers and then we drove to our final spot in the Lakes. We drove uphill to a small church that was tucked away in the hills. From there we were able to hike up to the top of steep hillsides.
The climb was easy because the earth and grass were soft and it wasn’t slippery but it was difficult because of just how steep it was. After walking uphill for about 10 minutes I found myself breathing harder than I expected! It was well worth it though. As we climbed higher and higher the view became more and more breathtaking.
When we finally reached as far as we could due to time restraints we stopped and just took in the view. The landscape was stunning, and the sun bursting through the clouds casting light spots and shadows across the hills was just wonderful. It really was soul food to just look around and see how beautiful this world can be.
We soaked in the view for a while and then carefully and steadily made our way back to the church where the car was, passing lots of friendly smiley people along the way. We were a bit disappointed to not have been able to make it to the top so my brother in law took a short cut and drove up to a high point. From here you could see the hills, the lake glittering in the sun and the tiny sailboats on the water. It was an amazing view.
We finally started making the long journey back home, hoping to beat traffic and arrive early evening. It was a great summer break, visiting the Peak District, Scotland and the Lake District. I’m so pleased to be able to tick off a few places off my bucket list and it was a nice reprieve from the city and the tough year that 2020 has unexpectedly been.
On the drive up we could see the landscape change. The view became more hilly and the greens became deeper and more lush. With the grey clouds chasing us the view became quite dramatic but so beautiful.
Once we arrived at the hotel we checked in, found somewhere to have dinner and then had an early night.
The next day we spent at a theme park so the kids could have some fun (and me of course). We walked through the nearby country park to the rides on what was a bright, beautiful day. Quite a change from the day before.
We spent some time on the rides, and then we visited the small indoor rainforest which was also on site. Here they had some quite impressive species, and we spent time marvelling at the different and some quite deadly animals we could see.
We spent the afternoon at a park as the sun was out with some friends of my sister and her family who then invited us back to theirs for dinner, which was a nice end to the day.