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Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Beautiful Bugs

Last Saturday 1000's of these dragonflies flew past the house. I have never seen anything quite like it. I tried to take some shots of them in the air to no avail, but then noticed that some were landing in my field. A quick change of lens and I managed to get some quite lovely photos. Unfortunately we were on the way out to a birthday party for one of the girlies friends, so I didn't have quite as much time as I would have liked.

They were green


and they were red

Friday, 23 October 2009

The Birthday Present

Charlotte had a guitar for her birthday, she is desperate to play, aspirations of Hanah Montana I think. Well, we managed to sort it out and found a lovely young man for her lessons. There are just four of them in her group, for an hour on a Saturday morning. She has been told by Javier that she needs to practice for an hour a day - so thankfull she didn't have aspirations for the violin!

Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Training begins

Now that Pepito has been in the house for a couple of weeks, I decided that he should have a little liberty in the kitchen. I have been trying to hand feed him in the cage, but he's not having much of that! So, making sure all winndows and doors were firmly shut - kitchens on the whole have wipe clean surfaces! I thought I would let him out for a bit - bad mistake.

He crashed around into the windows, and eventually flew down on to the floor.

Tried hiding behind the leg of the chair

Thought about climbing the leg of the chair

Just about..

made it on to the leg of the table

And finally flew up onto one of the kitchen chairs.

I tried to coax him back into his cage, but he wasn't too keen, so I removed the base and just popped it over the top of him. Thankfully this worked a treat, I was a little concerned that I'd never get him to go back in. So, any parrot trainers out there, all hints and tips will be gratefully received :-)

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

Partiendo Olivas

I've started picking the olives, some we are going to let turn black and have pressed for oil :-) These have been bashed with a stone to split open and are then left in water - to be changed every 12 hours - for a couple of days, to get rid of the bitterness. They are then stored in salty and herbed water for about a week, and are then ready to eat :-)

Friday, 16 October 2009

An outing at last

It's been a while since we had a photowalk with AFOTO, so I was quite pleased that when after the course at Callosa de Segura, they announced that there would be a KDD (quedada- meeting) for all to attend. I really only know the odd bar and high street in Callosa, so it was quite interesting to hit some other streets, that were unknown to me. We went upwards to the hermita of San Roque, and up again towards some old abandoned houses - always something interesting to photograph there. Whilst some of our group managed some stunning landscapes and some interesting portraits, I managed a number of "detalles" as I love all the quirky things you find in these old houses. Old bakelite lightsith still hanging on a wall, I am amazed that electricity was this far out of the main town centre and wonder how long ago these houses were abandoned?
This is the view of Callosa de Segura from the Hernita de San Roque

Wondering if these chairs were abandoned too, or brought up later?

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Introducing ...

This is Pepito, the latest member of the family. Juan brought him around the other day - why didn't I find myself a man who brings me the more traditional type of gift. I mean what's wrong with flowers, chocolates or even jewellery?

I had to take the photo through the bars of the cage as he is not terrible tame, although I am hoping to rectify that over time. I *think* that he is a parakeet, but I'm not really too sure. If anybody can identify him, I would be really pleased

Friday, 9 October 2009

Ugly Bug

Look what I found! It's a Praying Mantis and was just asking to have it's photo taken. It proved a very amiable model, and let me take loads of photos.

I used my Canon 100mm
f/2.8, which hasn't had an airing for ages. I must start doing a few more macro shots again. Unfortunately I don't suppose I will be able to find a willing model like this one every day!

Thursday, 8 October 2009


I seem to have a problem with landscape photography, that I don't really know how to sort out. My images always seem kind of flat and uninteresting. I know that we are all our own best critics, and when you know that there is a fault or something wrong with your picture, your eyes are just drawn straight to it. I have been trying just this past week though, and am quite pleased with the sunset picture above. This is obviously helped by the canal (luckily full at the time) leading through to the background, and the reflection of the setting sun.

Here, I am rather liking the fact that I managed to get some feeling of volume to those lovely fluffy white clouds, and the road travelling into the distance helps with acheiving some sort of perspective or depth. The fact that I took it whilst travelling along the motorway must also give me some brownie ponts too no?

I'm fairly pleased with this one too, the view from my front terrace, although I obviously need an artistic director to do things like remove the plastic table - hahaha

Monday, 5 October 2009

A Hard Day's Night

When I first saw The Liverpool Band at the comparsa of the Contrabandistas during the Moors and Christians fiestas of Orihuela. I was very impressed. They are an all Spanish Beatles tribute band and are really, really good.

Tonight they were playing in a Bar on the coast and we went down to see them. Still very good, but it was so much better in the open air. Where the stage was a lot bigger, better lit and with better acoustics. Will still be keeping an eye on their web page however, and would like to see them play again at another outdoor venue.

Happy Birthday to Me

Yes, I know that in my profile it says Gemini and that is quite correct. I had a choice for my birthday this year, a child free weekend in Barcelona or a new barbeque in the garden. Girlies - bless 'em - voted for the weekend away, but I decided on a barbeque. It was really hot this summer, so no chance of cement mixing in the heat, I'd have to do sweating - yuk yuk!!

So we went and ordered the bricks, blocks, cement, sand etc., and started to prepare the base. Unfortunately, we have had loads of rain since and so no more progress has yet been made :-( But the ground is starting to dry up now, So watch this space, I will be updating regularly.

Organised Mum

I really don't know how I used to hold down a job that involved all bills, wages etc. being paid on time, as these days I really can't remember what I did yesterday, let alone where I am meant to be going either today or tomorrow!

So, in a effort to not double book or forget appointments, parties, birthdays, meetings etc. I invested in a new calender for 2010. Oh the joys to discover it started in Sept 2009, has enough columns and spaces for everybody and best of all... It came with stickers!!!

I ordered it from here and am very impressed with their service. Which reminds me that I must check up on another order I have made through the internet.

Friday, 2 October 2009

El Guateque de Los 60's

Tecnica 2000
Well, this evening I went out with the Camera Club to take photos in the local shopping centre, as they are running a competition for photographs of the centre. Personally I found it very difficult to take any pictures at all as I just find the place so very ugly - but there you go.

We met up at around 18:30 and had a quick beer like you do to wet the whistle and plan the attack. Around 20:00 we regrouped and I said that we were just going to go and get some dinner and then go home. "Oh no you don't" the cry went up. Apparantly the town hall was putting on a concert of 60's music in one of the parks. So obediently we went
Los Griegos

There were 5 acts, ranging from ho hum to pretty damn excellent. One of my particular favourites being Los Escorpiones as they sang a lot of English songs and managed to get the crowd up and dancing.

Los Escorpiones

In the Audience
The final group were Tecnica 2000, who were just excellent, although they weren't on stage for long enough. So at 04:00 I eventually got home and fed the poor dogs, as they are far too countrified to take, unlike the pampered city dog above!

Thursday, 1 October 2009

¡Viva Los Novios!

Well, we currently have on loan a "boyfriend" for Margarita, just recently she has been a complete pain, constantly bleating and terrorising the chickens and duck (only one left now :-( We had a recent bereavenent). This new addition seems to have quietened her down a little and there are less garden pillaging exploits, which is just as well as lots of my pot plants are looking decidedly ragged round the edges.

The girlies have named him Lorenzo, although I have explained to them that we are not keeping him.
I don't think that she would be able to comply with his demanding nature - hahaha. I now realise where the expression randy old goat comes from :-0