A bit like an early birthday present

Monday 3rd February 2014

“It’s bin day today, it’s bin day today”. My little song and Chris shaking a plastic carrier bag is pretty much guaranteed to get Jez off the bed and out of the front door on a Monday morning. And since it gets both her and Max over-excited, for some strange reason, and they both tear down the drive as a result, we always walk over Upton Heath on a Monday. Otherwise I’d be dragging them back down the drive to get them in the car, which seems a bit pointless.

Despite the grey clouds we at least managed to avoid the rain for our walk today.

Upton Heath Skyline

The people chopping down trees have moved onto the relatively small conifers on the path near at the side of the old pits (leading to Max’s favourite pond and the Viewpoint). On Saturday we noticed that that they had cut a lot down and had left them at the side of the path. Today they were gathering them up.

More tree felling = more mud

Elsewhere there are signs that, after a mild winter, we may be in for an early spring. Here’s a wild honeysuckle bud burst.

Honeysuckle bud

And the silver birch trees not only have catkins, but some also have buds.

Silver Birch bud

All of the catkins might explain why Max is scratching so much at the moment.

Normally when I point a camera at Jez she purposefully moves away. Today I managed to snap a shot before she disappeared.

Jez on Upton Heath

When we got to the Roman Road I saw they had felled one of the big trees.

Another one bites the dust

I think it’s a beech.

So onto the title of this post. After we got home I went shopping, and when I returned there were two big parcels in the hall. The smaller was a couple of photographic reflectors. But the larger of the two was two big softbox lights. They weren’t for me exactly, but Chris’ company wanted to spend some money before their year-end, so I suggested these lights for indoor video work. The upside is that I get to play with them! Mind you, they weren’t easy to assemble. I put one up, and packed the other away in their carry case, and when I’d finished the living room looked like this!

Unpacking and setting up the new lights

I didn’t have much time to play around with it before I had to exercise and get dinner, but did take a quick photo of Max snoozing on the sofa.

A snoozing Max

I’m pleased with the result.


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