Sunshine means playtime

Friday 17th November 2017

Friday morning meant Teddy and I walked over to Upton Heath, and this morning it was lovely and sunny. And it looked very autumnal in the silver birch grove.

Autumn in the Silver Birch grove Silver Birch trees

Just after I’d taken that first photo we met our friend Tig, the staffie, with his Mum, Amanda. Here’s Tig posing for me.

Tig

And Tig, after a treat, in his ‘bear’ pose.

'Give me a treat' - Tig does his bear pose

He and Teddy had a great time playing.

Teddy and Tig at play

We walked on and then met Ollie, who is around a year old. Again, he and Teddy had a great time playing, despite the size difference. They were particularly interested in an old stick.

Teddy and Ollie were having such a good time with that stick

First one would get it and run off with it and the other would chase, and then the other one would get it and run off. Here they are playing tug with it.

Teddy and Ollie play tug

And lastly for today, a wonder autumnal scene along the Roman Road.

Autumn on the Roman Road

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Autumn colours and weather at Upton Country Park

Tuesday 7th November 2017

On Tuesday morning rain was forecast, so I took Teddy to Upton Country Park. To be honest, I don’t go to the park so much now they’ve ‘improved’ it as they have removed all the character from it. And I still think it’s a total disgrace that Poole Borough Council charge to park in the all but one of the car parks there (which is, of course, where I park). I also have a problem with Teddy as the fences they have put in around the farmer’s fields are quite low, and Teddy could easily jump over them, especially when there are sheep in the fields, so I have to keep putting him on the lead.

Anyway, as I said, we went to the Country Park. You can tell from the light in this photo, looking towards the Woodland Walk, what sort of a morning it was.

An Autumn day at Upton Country Park

The beech trees in the Woodland Walk are now turning and starting to lose their leaves, so, as ever at this time of year, it looks rather nice.

The Wooldand Walk in Autumn

The Wooldand Walk in Autumn

When we got round to the Poole Harbour side of the park the sun had come out, illuminating the bird hide.

The bird hide

A little further on and we met Flynn, a Deerhound/Greyhound cross. I was interested to see Flynn and Teddy together as we initially thought Teddy had some Deerhound in him.

Teddy and Flynn (a Deerhound/Greyhound cross)

And here they are getting a treat. I was surprised to see that Flynn was slightly smaller than Teddy as a Deerhound is normally larger than both a Saluki and a Greyhound.

Time for a treat

After taking our leave of Flynn (I was surprised the dogs didn’t want to play with each other) we walked on to the gardens. The view across Upton Lake (Poole Harbour) towards Poole was a bit bleak today.

It looked bleak over Upton Lake

And I should point out that that is a colour photo, not a black and white! There was a lot more colour, though, near the walled gardens where the acers are showing their Autumn Colours.

Colourful Acers

And that is all for today. Rain had been forecast, but we only had a couple of light showers lasting no more than a few minutes, so we did well.

Of Dogs and Fungi

Sunday 1st October to Saturday 7th October 2017-10-15

Having said this post is from the 1st October I don’t actually have any photos from that day, so the first photos are from Monday 2nd when we went over to Upton Heath for our walk as usual. I took the EOS 6D with the 100mm Macro lens attached, and I’m glad I did as I got some really nice photos. Unfortunately, if you suffer from arachnophobia the first one isn’t quite so nice as its an Orb Spider.

Orb spider

That photos was taken along the old railway line. We walked onto the pond and Teddy was really pleased to find some doggie friends there. It all started with a meet and greet.

Meet and greet at the pond

We met Max, the Golden Retriever.

Max the Golden Retriever

And Buzz, the Viszla who was staying with Max temporarily.

Buzz the Vizsla

Teddy and Buzz had a good time playing.

Teddy and Buzz

And then there was Tig, one of our staffy friends.

Tig

After a good game we went our separate ways and I walked Teddy round through the old pits.

Teddy in the old pits

On the lower heath the Fly Agaric are still in evidence.

Flly agaric

Although these had been kicked over.

Broken

As usual Teddy went into the little pool by the small boardwalk for a drink.

Teddy by the boardwalk

And then posed for me.

Teddy

After that we made our way home.

On Tuesday we started the day, as every day, with breakfast, and Teddy was a happy dog when he found out I’d finished the yogurt and he could have the pot. He soon got stuck in.

Nose in the trough

For our walk we went to Canford Heath and as it was a lovely sunny day I, once again, took the EOS 6D with the 100mm lens on it. Although it is a macro lens it is also excellent for portraits, which is why it’s great for taking photos of dogs, like this one of Teddy.

Teddy

Fungi are also in evidence on Canford Heath, like this one, although I’m not too sure what it is.

Fungi

As we walked through the woods I found this huge Cauliflower Fungus.

Cauliflower fungus

And these Razor Strop, or Birch Bracket Fungi.

Razor Strop Fungi

I also spotted this pretty little feather, suspended on some blades of grass.

Feather

There were more fungi when we left the woods. Firstly this Russula

Russula

And then this Panther Cap

Panther Cap

And lastly from Tuesday, a photo of Teddy surveying the heath as we walked back to the car.

Teddy surveys the heath

Jumping ahead to Friday we were again on Upton Heath. Firstly we went to the pond.

Teddy in the pond

And then, after Teddy had had a drink and a paddle, we headed towards the old pits. En route we met the cows.

We met the cows

You can see that at some point that one has had a nasty injury on its side.

On the lower heath we met several dogs. Firstly there was Oscar, a Border Terrier.

Oscar

And then we met a lady with 4 small dogs, including this 12 week old Chihuahua puppy.

12 week old Chihuahua pup

At this point I put Teddy on the lead. As the lady said, he might have thought it was was a rat! He was really good with it, though, and very gentle, so I don’t think I need have worried. And this, was the pup’s father.

The pup's dad

While we were talking our friend Janet came along with her lurcher, Jake.

Our friend Jake

After a long chat we walked on round and, as usual, Teddy went in the pond by the small boardwalk where he was once again searching for something under the water.

Teddy is searching under the water again

When we got to the Roman Road I was pleased to see that there was another small fungus growing on the tree stump by the stream.

Fungi

While we were there I took the opportunity to take a photo looking along the Roman Road while the leaves on the trees are still green. They won’t be there much longer.

The trees haven't turned along the Roman Road yet

The Virginia Creeper along the path in Creekmoor has turned though, and has produced beautiful Autumn colours.

Autumn Colours

I don’t have any photos from our walk on Saturday, but first thing in the morning the plumber arrived to fix our leaking stopcock. And do you remember that lovely new kitchen we had installed 10 months ago? Well, today part of it had to come apart again!

My new kitchen is in pieces! Bits of kitchen fill my small sitting room

I’m pleased to say that it’s all fixed and back together again.

Rain then some sunshine

Sunday 10th September to Saturday 16th September 2017

Yes, we went over to Upton Heath for our walk on Sunday and we got wet again! Although it wasn’t as bad as yesterday my walking boots decided enough was enough and let water, so I came home with wet feet. Teddy wasn’t particularly happy about the state of affairs either.

Wet again! Teddy's not very happy

Monday was a good day – we didn’t get wet! And on Tuesday we actually had sunshine for our walk on Canford Heath. Here is Teddy, backlit by the sun.

Backlit on Canford Heath

And letting me know that all this photo-taking malarkey can get a bit boring.

Well this is boring!

When we do get sunshine a lot of Red Admiral butterflies are taking advantage, and we saw this lovely one as we headed down towards Knighton Heath.

Red Admiral Butterfly

I also spotted quite a large fungi and was trying to get a photo of it, but Teddy thought he’d take a leaf our of Max’s book and photobomb the shot.

Teddy takes a leaf out of Max's book and learns to photobomb

We continued on round and Teddy met a young Cocker Spaniel for the second time and they had a really good play. After which, of course, Teddy had to find the nearest puddle in which to cool down.

Teddy poses for Tongue out Tuesday

I particularly like this photo of him.

Time to cool down in a puddle

Needless to say he got out covered in mud!

Tuesday would have been Jezebel’s 10th birthday, so the day was tinged with sadness. But she loved cake, so in her honour I made a chocolate marble cake in the afternoon which Chris and I have been enjoying. This photo of Jez was taken on her birthday last year.

Jez on her 9th Birthday

On Wednesday I went to Dad’s in the morning as usual. I am pleased to say he has suffered no ill effects as a result of his fall last week, other than a very sore thumb where he cut it. In the afternoon I took Teddy over to Canford Heath, although I didn’t take any photos as once again it looked as though it could tip down with rain at any minute. After our walk we dropped round to Pat’s to take her her birthday presents: she will be 97 on Thursday.

On Thursday Teddy and I headed out to Badbury Rings for our walk. We didn’t get that far, though, as Teddy decided to whine and bark in the back of the car. Instead I called into Kingston Lacy which was closer.

Unfortunately the main part of the Woodland Walk is closed.

No Woodland Walk for us today

We did manage to do one small loop in the woods though, and then headed back past the house to the gardens. This view of the house was taken as we were walking back from the Woodland Walk.

Kingston Lacy House

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it before but in the woods in one part of the gardens they are using pigs to clear the undergrowth. They’ve always been too far away for me to get a photo before, but today they were by the fence. Here is the big one (I think it might be a Gloucester Old Spot, but I can’t actually see any spots so I might be wrong).

Clearing the undergrowth in the gardens the natural way

And here is one of the Kunekunes.

This Kunekune is hoping to be fed a few apples

He came over to the fence as there is a shoot there. You can buy apples and feed the pigs. Sadly I didn’t have 50p on me for the apples, so he had to go hungry.

Over in the Kitchen Garden the dahlias are looking lovely.

Dahlia

There was supposed to be an orchid flowering there somewhere but I couldn’t find it. I did find the little autumnal scene in one of the outhouses though.

Autumn's harvest in the Kitchen Garden

And one final shot of the house as we walked back to the car.

Kingston Lacy House

On Friday we walked over Upton Heath again and although I took the camera we spent time walking round with a dog walker so I didn’t take any photos. I did take the camera when we went on Saturday though, despite the forecast of rain. There was a very misty and moody view over Poole Harbour, looking towards Arne.

A misty view across the heath

And yes, we got wet, but not very. Just a couple of fairly light showers. So I’ll leave you with a panorma of the heath and hope that the forecast is right and we will not have a few days without rain.

Panorma across Upton Heath

Among the autumn leaves

Tuesday 22nd November 2016

Apologies for all the delays in posting everyone, but things have been all upside down with the kitchen being replaced. I’m pleased to say we’re back to normal now though, so at some stage I will post photos.

Anyway, back to the 22nd November, and Jez, Max and I went to Broadstone Rec. for our walk. Here is the angel with the autumn leaves as a backdrop and the floral tributes from Armistice Day at her feet.

The angel in autumn

Jez and Max were in amongst the fallen leaves too.

Jez and Max in the atumn leaves

And here’s Max on his own.

Max in the autumn leaves

It was a nice sunny morning…

Jez and Max

.. which meant I was able to get some photos of the dogs on the playing fields. Here they are together.

Guess who has got a treat in her hand

And Jez on her own, looking happy.

Happy dog

Here’s Mr Grumpy.

Mr Grumpy

And, of course, there’s always one has close their eyes and spoil a good photo.

Daft dog!

Walking on around I loved the bright yellow of this blackberry leaf, lit by the sun.

Autumn yellow

And finally for today, Max on the path through the heath as we headed back to the car.

Max on the heath

It had been a very pleasant walk.

A year ago today

I took a photo looking across Creekmoor Ponds in the late afternoon light.

Late afternoon at Creekmoor Ponds

Upton Country Park again

Friday 18th November 2016

Today is Chris’ birthday, so he had his presents and cards first thing. After that I took Max back to Upton Country Park. Jez was busy sunning herself at home, but it gave me the opportunity to walk Max through the woods and then around the back of the park.

If the woods looked good yesterday, then the Dark Age Dwelling in the trees looked even better today.

The Dark Age Dwelling nestled in the trees

Since last week they have put a front on it.

There's a front and door on the Dark Age Dwelling now

And I rather liked the door catch.

Door latch

Here’s another part of the Woodland Walk. This photo was bombed by a Labrador, but I thought the photo looked far better with him in it than the photo I took without him.

A labrador bombs my Woodland Walk photo

We walked on around to the stream and Max stood in it, ever hopeful that I’d throw something for him.

Max in the stream

But his legs aren’t good at the moment so there were no cones today. Here he is again by the stream which has been swollen by the very high tide.

The stream is very swollen from a high tide

And finally for today: Max on the boardwalk.

Max on the boardwalk

The walk had been a little bit chilly but at least we’d had sunshine.

A year ago today

We went for a walk on Upton Heath and met this beautiful, 13 week old whippet called Juno.

Juno - 13 weeks old (what fabulous ears!)

Jez makes her presence felt

Thursday 17th November 2016

I seem to have been running around in circles this week, due to the fact that our new kitchen is being fitted over the next 2-3 weeks. Quite a bit of my spare time, therefore, has been spent clearing the contents out of the existing kitchen. In a way it has helped that we have been resting Max up quite a bit.

So here we are at Thursday and at 4.15am I had a rude awakening. Yes, it was Jezebel, wide awake and whining at the side of my bed.

Jez wakes me at 4.15am

Turns out she wanted food, then she wanted to go out, and then eventually she settled down to sleep: which was more than I did as I lay awake for the next couple of hours and only managed to go to sleep a short time before I had to wake up again!

For our walk today we went to Upton Country Park. In the Woodland Walk the beech trees are a beautiful golden colour.

In the Woodland Walk

And this is looking towards the Dark Age Dwelling.

In the Woodland Walk

We walked over to the stream, although I didn’t throw anything for Max as his legs still aren’t great. Then we walked around to the dog run where we came upon a year old English Pointer, Woody, so we went in to say hello.

Jez and Max meet Woody

Jez was really pleased to have a bit of a play with him.

Jez is happy to play with Woody

After the dogs had played for a while we headed on back to the car, but not before I’d taken some more photos in the Woodland Walk. Here the sun is coming through the leaves.

Sunlight through the trees

And a nice shot looking up through the branches.

Autumn leaves

The walk hadn’t taken too long but it had been very pleasant.

A year ago today

Max and I were on a wet Canford Heath.

Big puddle time