Friday, 23 September 2011

He’s mad

Yep, my dog is mad. Or as a friend of mine says he has “special needs”.

He was an angel to walk when he was a young puppy. I took him to weekly training, but two years ago when we got him, was the start of my niggle back/hip pain. Because he was sooooo small, the classes used to hurt me having to bend down to reach him. In the class he was a star pupil, but as much as I told the instructor he was a Jekyll and Hyde. She never saw the other side of Teddy. He turns into a different being when he sees his lead and we step outside the door.

It’s so embarrassing being dragged down the street. No one wants to walk him. My in laws find it very trying when they look after him.

Well check out my video of him this week to see what I mean


What I would like to point out at this moment is that Teddy wears an anti-pull harness. Someone forgot to tell him. Do you think I would get my money back if they saw this video?


I’m taking him to the vets in a minute. It’s a long drive around very tight bend lanes. Teddy jumps all over the place, even into my lap. So he’s a crash waiting to happen. The last time I went I bought him his very own seat belt harness. He’s so embarrassing on his monthly visits to the vet. He holds his lead and does the head shake continually whilst we are waiting our turn. All the animals and their owners sit and look at me tutting.

As you can see after my operation at the end of October I will not be able to walk him for a long time to come.




Teddy wants one of these, to join me and Tasmin on the sofas with ours.

But I have told him, he can’t have one until he behaves.


It’s funny how the internet works. You start in one place and hours later you end up somewhere you have no idea how you got to.

Barb of Jinky Art is someone whose photography I really admire. I am not alone in that view.  Some of my photography idols have taken workshops with her in the States. One even flew all the way from Holland to California.( see there blogs here and here talking about their experience.)

Last week she announced she is coming to the UK next year. I was beside myself with excitement and I was trying to talk myself into getting a place. I knew she is expensive, I knew the sort of money I would have to pay out. But secretly I hoped it would be less than I expected. Well it turned out to be 2,000 Australian dollars. A LOT. Especially as you have to organise your own accommodation for the duration. I would no doubt be the only non professional there. She is due to talk about business plans and Photoshop. All which will mean nothing to me, as I have neither.

Fullscreen capture 23092011 125033

But the crunch that made my decision was hubby returning from the States to be told his wife was thinking of paying out big bucks for a hobby. He thought I was mad.. So it put the doubt back in my mind. Half the places filled up within hours and I am hoping the others will go super fast so I don’t have to ponder anymore.

Of course he could see my disappointment and said “Go on it. We never spend any money.” I could use some of my money from an apartment I rent out. It sits there untouched. But the damage was done. The doubt was stronger, than my yearning to attend.

But whilst I was checking out the workshop I looked up Sarah Wright the photographer who is arranging it. Somehow I also ended up on another photographer, here, with almost the identical name and saw a link to some amazing bunting. It turned out to be her sister. ( here )

The bunting was perfect for my home/garden. So I emailed the lady and over the day it was arranged that some would be sent to me forthwith, so that I could use them in a shoot this weekend and ready for my magazine debut session next week.

I’ve added it to some cheap plastic bunting that I always have hanging in my garden.



2011  Sept Bunting-1

It should be great as a background to a shoot I am attempting tomorrow. I am shooting a couple. Their new-born and a young toddler. I have only spoke to them at a party for 5 minutes.  A friend of mine told her, she MUST get me to take pictures of her baby when it arrives. No pressure then !!!!

I have invited Anna Bowkis along for the ride and experience. Between us we should get some shots.

Pray for us we need all the help we can get.

Saturday, 17 September 2011

A baby in the house.

Some girls are naturally born maternal, and some are not so much.

We got a phone call. Someone needed our help and fast. My son and his girlfriend were excited to be babysitting their friends puppy, Poppy for the day/night.


They have been talking ALOT about getting a puppy. Dogs aren’t allowed  in the apartment block where they live. But it hasn’t stopped their friends from buying Poppy. The poor mite is left all day in the apartment, with wooden floors. Need I say more.



Within minutes of little Poppy entering Ryan's apartment she had done what little puppies do, all over his rug and floors.


So we were called, as Kerri couldn’t clear it up. Ryan was out at football so Tasmin and I came to the rescue. We took little Poppy over and become her mums for the day.


She is super tiny. Yet, she is at least six months old.  She is much smaller than Teddy was even at 10 weeks old. She also is extremely timid and obviously gets told off a lot for her puppy mistakes.

We took her for a long walk and because they were scared to have her back in their apartment, we brought her to our house. It was so sad to see her running mad off her lead in our garden. She was like a different dog.


Then we let Teddy say hello.



They loved each other.

We nearly got to babysit her for the evening, but they decided to take her back to her home as she was tired out from her adventures. We were all very sad to have her return to her little lonely apartment.

But the good thing was there now won’t be the patter of tiny feet  anytime soon in Ryan's apartment. It was just the wake up call they needed to see that an apartment isn’t fair on a dog and Kerri didn’t like the mucky part. Kerri realised puppies look cute, but they are hard work.

Thursday, 15 September 2011

My hair’s got someone a job

Yep, my hair.

I very rarely get it cut. I always say it is self cutting. I just pull against the ends and they fall off !!!

But a friend of mines step-daughter needed a head of long hair to cut into layers for a trade test in a salon.

So voila, mine was perfect.



I wore my fab new dress I bought in London. I would love to say I found it in a little designer boutique. But it caught my eye as I walked past the stores open door, on my way to Sloane Street.


I instantly went in to try it on. But boy was it tight across my back, because of my fun bags at the front !

I thought I’ll check out its other flagship store on Oxford Street for a bigger size. But it wasn’t the size that was the problem, it was the cut of the dress and my fun bags. So I decided to buy it, and just not try and move my arms whenever I wear it !!!

I also bought several other amazing items of clothing there. One a gorgeous jumper that even gives my newly purchased, half price (£75!!) Nicole Fahri,  jumper a run for its money. The shop I bought everything from was Hennes……….. Oh the shame……………

I wore the shift dress with my Parisian ballet pumps and leggings, topped off with my Anthropologie cardi, my husband has admitted he hates.


He probably hates the cardi because it does make me look like a chunky, hunchback. Which is near the truth, seeing's the surgeon wrote in his report I have a defined stoop. Thanks mate. I was trying to stand straight at the time.

I slung on all my bangles and another new bracelet I bought here this week.

( I added the bluebird)


I’m not sure if I have shared with you an image of my new bespoke bangle. It’s on the left hand side and says “Love, always and forever.” Which is what my husband always writes in my cards. I LOVE it and am so glad  I commissioned it. I am just waiting for my two, gold bangles to me finished. I have to wait a while as I have asked for them to be sent to London to be hallmarked.



So I now have bouncy, layered hair. Emily had to blow dry it straight for them to check the cut for the second time. I could tell they couldn’t fault the cut. Every section they lifted up was perfect. So I wasn’t surprised to hear they had offered her a job.

Boy, were they handsome in the salon. The man that checked mine was to die for. Then I spotted a hunk sat behind me having his hair cut. He wouldn’t have looked out of place in a Vogue editorial. It made me and Emily quite hot under the collar. It was sad to realise I would have been old enough to have been their mum.

IMG_5544I have taken some more shots of the black squirrel in my garden. He has lucked out with the buy 1 get 10 free walnuts, our garden now has to offer since the hurricane winds this week.

He’s taken to sitting in the crook of the tree, looking out for Teddy. I went and put my longest zoom lens on and he bloody, disappeared. So it’s sat waiting for another days opportunity.


I am also sat here waiting to hear from the hospital concerning my ALIF surgery. Our insurance company want lots of questions answered in relation to the procedure. In fact they were things I would have asked if I hadn’t been so shocked and ill prepared for the consultation outcome.

They want to know:

length of expected stay.

How much will the anaesthetist cost?

Where is the bone graft coming from? (I really want this one answered as well. As it maybe coming from my hip…….)

Sunday, 11 September 2011

A bribe was needed

I have been owed a photo-shoot of my son since Mothers Day. The time was never right for him. So as my time is limited to be mobile, it was now or never. But we had to dodge the rain showers, as the sun started to set. And I had to make them a roast dinner. They are missing my cooking at last.

I have lots from this shoot and hopefully after the massive back log of photos to be edited is sorted, I will get to share more.

Here’s some natural ones we loved.






I can’t wait to play with this one.



It was worth the stuffing I had to cook, to add Kerri to the mix.

He wants nuts….



Our walnuts…….

2011 Sept 11th

and it drives HIM nuts……..


And can you spot a problem with this plant.


Look to the left. Can you see those small black dots on the windowsill. It took some closer investigation, and look what I found.


Believe me it took a LOT of searching, he was so disguised.

I took hundreds of photos today. I was playing about with manual exposure and focus.

My main subject was a wee bit fidgety.

I mean it was windy and he LOVES leaves.


My other subject has abandoned us for sunny shores-California to be exact. He’s obviously limbering up for muscle beach here.


Friday, 9 September 2011

Project Life

Week Thirty-two


Insert of my sister & sons holiday.



Week Thirty-three


Tasmins boyfriends boxers split from top to bottom. No pun intended. So of course I took a snap of it. He wore them to work like that!


Week Thirty-four



I took a picture of an old friend who is moving to Holland in the coming weeks. It maybe one of the last times I see her. Whilst I was ordering my gold bangle, I walked past the buildings that used to be my Dads printing company. I spent most of my teenage years there. So I took a photo on my point and shoot, I carry in my bag.

Week Thirty-five



I love using the screen save on my laptop to capture images from the internet. It came in useful for the day I got the shocking news from my new back consultant. I completely forgot to take a picture at the hospital, so I used his online profile instead. It’s nice to have a picture of him to always remind me. I wouldn’t have dared ask at the consultation.

Week Thirty-Six


This weeks photos are almost finished. I know that I am going to probably use an image of the TV screen. I have watched Big Brother since it started over 10 years ago. In fact I have NEVER missed an episode. We even used to get someone to video it for us in the old days of VHS when we were on holiday. The opening episode always makes me stop and think about how my life will have changed by the time it ends months later. I have changed careers, moved house and lost a house. Wondered if I will have lost a parent from cancer, said goodbye to my daughters boyfriend after a car crash. This year I will be thinking about my health and hoping that I will be on the mend by the end of the series.

My friend Judith said I will be “as happy as a pig in shit” laid up in hospital settling down to watch the daily episodes, and she is right. I admit it I am a Big Brother addict. I mean who would have thought a gypsy would win a Celebrity Big Brother ( see video here). I love how unpredictable it is.


Thursday, 8 September 2011

have you ever tickled a Tapier ?


I have……….and they rather took a liking to me.

2011 Aug-28th paradise park

look away now if you are easily offended….

I mean they REALLY took a liking to me……


We were invited to The Paradise Wildlife Park by the Rockall's.


I was to get to meet and  chat to the Royal photographer Ian Pelham Turner  and at the same time have a little photo shoot session with the Rockall's daughter, Phoebe.


I couldn’t begin to tell you about the laughter we had after the event.

It culminated in a young teenager answering his mobile in full voice, during the poor mans speech.


The rest of the them laughed when they saw the poor man approaching me in the car park, where I was taking some pictures of Phoebe near some tractor tyres. They pitied him, going to give ME advice !


YES, I knew the light was at the wrong angle. YES, I knew there wasn’t any catchlights in her eyes. And YES I could do with a reflector to bounce the light back at her. But I don’t have one. He then proceeded to move her into a better lit position.

Ergh YES , I knew the light was better at that angle, but he was missing the point. We wanted an urban, style shot with the massive tractor tyres. Not an image of Phoebe in a car park !!

So we had a good giggle about this later after we had tickled a few tapiers….

2011 Aug 28th Phoebe

And I got to take some perfect lit shots near sunset.




I’m still editing lots of the images. It’s a steep learning curve for me editing. But I know practice makes perfect as it is with my photography skills.

What I most liked about the session is that the moody teenager,who liked to scowl into the camera, could see what a difference a smile made to her beauty.

And I snatched a few images of her mum, Judith on the walk back home. Of course she hates them…….as everyone of our age always does. But I LOVE them and she will do to in ten years time, when she looks back at them…. Don’t we always.




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