Firewirks over Sydney Opera House

Firewirks over Sydney Opera House

Sunday, 30 September 2012

A different walk today.  Both Rich and I had a day off golf today which I think we needed.  A nothing-much-planned day.  So, while Rich was catching up on his sleep after his stag trip, I was up and about nice and early and got some chores done.  Cold shower to start of course, black coffee and a blog post, a few bits and bobs up at my old house and then off for my weekend walk.

This is the route along the river near where I used to live and is probably the equivalent walk in terms of distance and hilliness to my big field/walled track route here in Bradwell.

It starts with an unusual stile and dog gate combo.  I always find it weird that the dogs seem to know that the dog gate is for them and wait for me to lift the latch rather than just hopping over the human stile as they would normally.

We follow the river which is very high.  Mindful of the untimely death of a woman from my village in the same river, I didn't throw sticks for Shelagh knowing that she wouldn't swim without them.  Minty might paddle but she'll not go out of her depth so that's okay.

I love this meadow.  It's flat and huge and bounded by the river on one side and hills all around.  The dogs are still swallow-mad and luckily there were no sheep in the field so they could run their little legs off.  Shelgh has recently been on a diet and is slimmer and sleaker now so can almost keep up with Minty, at least for a while.  I love watching them running, ears flapping in the wind, barking and just being free.

Win Hill to the left and Bamford Edge to the right.  And the trees just about to turn for autumn.  Not the most beautiful day but still lots of loveliness to enjoy.

Just after this big tree we leave the river and head up hill.

The views from the hill are lovely.  This is looking back towards Hathersage with Carl Wark (a neolithic hill fort) and Higger Tor beyond.

This is looking forwards towards Bamford, Bamford Edge and Ladybower Reservoir in the distance. My golf course is just below Bamford Edge to the right.

Minty waits for me on a stile.

So, since the walk I've had a lovely day relaxing day.  Cooked breakfast, made some muffins (healthy ones with those blackberries I picked and lots of bran and muesli).  I'm going to freeze half and use them as part of a mini-meal when needed.  Caught up on some recorded Tv shows and then went for another evening walk before popping a chicken in the oven and settling down in front of the final day of the Ryder Cup.

It's gonna be a loooong night but at least the Europeans are finally making a fight of it after 2 lacklustre days.   Hope you all had a great weekend and are ready for a good week of fat fighting (if that's what you're up to of course) next week!

Day 13 - Mixed Report

Overall I would say that I've been much better this week than last.  I have, once again, stuck to the plan structure pretty well and had a LOT less booze to boot. 


  1. Stuck to the morning routine every day - cold shower or bath, black coffee, walk and no meal for at least 3 hours. 
  2. I dug some wellies out which actually go over my calves so I do not have an excuse not to go up the field in the morning if it is wet and muddy. 
  3. I've managed to avoid snacking which is a major thing for me.
  4. Booze has, over the whole week been limited to 2 rum and diet cokes, 1 whisky and 3 pints of beer and a glass of wine yesterday (of which more later).  Compared to last week this is pretty good going!
  5. One personal training session and a couple of decent walks on top of all the POMs.
  6. I made a plan and stuck to it for the Wolves awayday yesterday and, on the whole, it worked out alright.
  7. I have been a better blogger.  I have written more posts and been active on the Six Wweeks to OMG Forum so have "met" some great new bloggers which has given me much-needed support and advice.

  1. Although I've done the POMs, I haven't done particularly high-energy bouts of exercise.  They have been limited to hilly dog walks.  I have not managed to drag myself to Zumba (even when Rich was away last Tuesday) and I haven't done any running.  Something to work on next week.
  2. The scales have not been kind.  I have weighed myself every morning (perhaps I should not have done?) and they have stayed EXACTLY the same, every single time.  To the same decimal point even.  I'm somewhat suspicious now that they are somehow "stuck" but they are digital and have not been unreliable in the past.  It is somewhat demoralising but one of the SWTOMG bloggers reassured me that her scales "stuck" for a couple of weeks before shifting once more so I'm going to keep the faith.
  3. I haven't been particularly scrupulous about the amount of carbs I'm eating.  I've cut back A LOT but am not really counting so don't know how many grams per days I'm taking in.
  4. Our household has been a bit moody.  I don't know if it is me being picky/resentful or Rich being thoughtless/disconnected or a combination of the 2 but we have been a bit snippy with each other this week.  It's not like us and I don't like it.  Trouble is he's no longer a great talker [why do they always start off talking your hind leg off when they're chasing you and then just stop once they're happy and settled?!] so addressing even this very small blip is like pulling teeth.  I am going to though as otherwise I will fester over it and will become more picky/resentful which is no good to anyone!
So, in advance of my Week 2 WI tomorrow morning (which I'm NOT hopeful about at all), there is my second week's report.  Good but "could do better".

Now, I'm off for my morning POM.  I'm going to take the dogs for a different walk as I think we'll all die of boredom if I post any more photos of the big field/walled track route any time soon!!

Friday, 28 September 2012

An autumn walk

You will by now be familiar with this walk.  I've done it the last 2 Saturdays and again this morning each time with my camera.  I've enjoyed recording the autumnal changes over such a short period.

The neighbour's pots are losing their verve but they're still lovely to look at. 

This is the unusual stile into the big field at the end of our road.  It is made of a type of local limestone which contains large fossils and there is a beautiful large fossil right where you put your feet.  I wonder who arranged for it to be put in place and picked such grand stone??  I've seen that type of limestone carved and polished as the window sills at Chatsworth House and I picked it for the hearth stone at my old house (at some expense)!

It's a dark, grey morning compared to the last 2 Saturdays but not cold.    After their big swallow chase during the week, the dogs are hyper in the big field, racing off up the hills to my right, constantly scanning the skies searching for an illusive swallow.  But they are destined to be disappointed as I spotted a huge flock of them massing to fly off!  Poor Minty!

Still, there is much running to be done and lots to sniff and smell (for the dogs, not me!).

The cows and calves are just as suspicious as they were last week and the week before.

But they are a lot more relaxed than they were earlier in the summer and there is no stroppy bull in the field to contend with. Phew!

The walled track is changing colour.  Hints of red and brown are appearing and the geranium leaves are turning lime green.

I was surprised that the blackberries that I picked last Saturday are still so plentiful.  I decided to pick another bagful and, to this end, got scratched and nettle-stung picking the berries out of the congested tangles. 

Shelagh was in seventh heaven, buried deep in the undergrowth snuffling and snorting at terrified beasties below.  Minty was bored and ran off, the minx.

In pursuit of free fruit, I worked my way down the line, squatting to reach low fruit, getting scratched and stung frequently.  And then, as my bag was nearly full I found a spot where the fruit was perfect - ripe, large berries and totally unaffected by nettles or tangles, arrayed lightly against a stone wall it was perfect picking!  Typical!!

A late bee sucking some last pollen out of this flower (no idea what it's called)

After being bored during the blackberry picking, Minty was naughty.  She was desperate to find some swallow so squeezed under a gate and headed into the middle of a huge (mercifully empty) field right next to a farm house!!  I yelled blue murder at her and she eventually came back to me but was then in disgrace.  Hmmm...look at the resentment on that face.

Come oooon Mum - hurry up!

We head into Bradwell so I can go to the hardware shop. 

We used to live just near this cottage and I always admired her roses and clematis.  They are simply stunning and seem to bloom for months

Then down the steep hill, past my local pub.  We were there last night for darts and dominoes.  I've been inducted into the dominoes world which is strangely tricky.  I lost my first ever league match by a mile (playing with Rich) but won the pub game so not a total disgrace.

The pub is an ancient building.  The sign behind Shelagh's beautiful face says that it was "IC" (whatever that means?) in 1676. 

Finally we make it to the hardware store.  I attach the dogs to a post and then spot this cat who had been hiding behind some sacks.  Not impressed by his new companions!

Mornings off

Well, I managed to sort out the photo issue but only by shrinking the pics to tiny proportions.  I was previously resizing but using the wrong measure of dimension, pixels not width.....I don't know!  Now I'm not sure whether I'd rather just buy some proper storage at £1.80 per month and not have to shrink my photos so far down!

Anyway, enough of that.  Below are my photos from last Saturday's morning POM.  Enjoy the blue skies and sunshine because they may be the last you see for some time.  I'm off today but it is grey and rainy (when isn't it?) so any photos I take will not be as nice as these.

We went on the same walk as the previous Saturday morning, through the big field and up the walled track. I still love it.  Things change in only one week.

Look at that sky!

 Late geraniums still blooming in the shelter of the track.

The end of the rosebay willowherb.  Looking almost alive as it leans into the pathway.

Blackberries.  it's weird looking at this photograph knowing that those exact ripe berries have already been picked, cooked into an apple and blackberry crumble and eaten!  My Dad loves homecooked meals, especially those measl that finish with a crumble!

 Field Scabious.

The prettiest goats in the village.  The other goats I see tend to look a bit rough and, well, "goaty" but these are so soft and sweet and buttery!

View from the path running down through the village towards the church.

As I mentioned above, I've taken today off and I'm really enjoying it so far.  Well, NOW I'm enjoying it.  As I was not rushing off to work, I decided to try a cold BATH instead of my usual cold shower.  It wasn't too bad but, as I suspected there was a lot more faffing around with timers etc.  Not something I'll be doing on an everyday morning.

I suspect I could have gone a bit more hardcore temperature  wise as it wasn't 100% cold water but it was still pretty freezing to lie down into and I'm pleased that I managed a good 5 minutes lying down.  I don't feel noticeably colder than after my shower so I suspect the shower is just as effective but a bit quicker.

I've been blogging while I sip a very strong black coffee and I'm about to head out for my morning POM and will finally buy that thermometer and timer I should have bought 2 Saturday's ago which should help me keep to the straight and narrow.

I'm always concerned when living with a new plan that I start really well and then my pesky, clever, manipulative chimp gradually eases up and erodes things away from the plan, so outside accountability in the form of timer and thermometer is essential!

On the topic of outside accountability, I have been weighing every morning this week which I didn't do last week.  It has been a bit disheartening to note that the scales have stayed EXACTLY the same every day.  To the last decimal point on my scales.  This isn't bad, I know, but I do want to see some real progress.  With the awayday to Wolves coming up tomorrow, I'll have to stay vigilant to make sure that I do! 

So, I've gone from Diet Giddiness to mild disillusionment in one fell swoop....typical, LOL!  That is so Me when it comes to dieting. There is no half measures, just black (disaster) and white(delight).  I know in my head that there is a middle way but, when dieting, sometimes struggle to find it.

Anyway, I'd better get out and about.  Have a lovely weekend and I'll let you know how I get on with the awayday temptations!