Sunday 16 September 2018

Walking By The Book :: 2

Morning Lovelies,
today I've woken up full of cold and I feel generally...bleugh. ( auto correct wants to change that to Lughole...Ha ha. I feel a bit better already :0)

Another reason I am smiling despite the lurgy is I finally have a new keyboard for my ageing desktop. Hurray.  I was struggling on with the old one despite it missing half the letters as I typed. That made blogging a very long process.
Another issue I had was being unable to see thumbnails when selecting photos to add to a post. Middle son has sorted that for me. Double yay

To celebrate ( and because I don't feel like doing much else at the moment) here are a few pictures from a walk I did the other week.

I drove to the start point quiet early one sunny Wednesday morning and parked by Mount Saint Bernard Abbey, where they kindly let you park for a small offering.

After a short wander through the quiet Rose gardens I set off on this 5 mile walk. Through the neatly tended grounds.

Then along the road to find a footpath.

I loved the view of the Charnwood countryside here.

And wandering through woodland on a sunny day is always a joy.

This was the second walk I had tried from this thrifted walking guide ( the first is HERE )

It's a bit hit and miss following a guide book that is so out of date . Where stiles are described there are often gates.

Happily Blackbrook Reservoir was still a pretty landmark on the route.

Ummm, Fenney  Windmill was not looking it's best. Great to see restoration work happening though.

I love noticing the signs of the changing seasons as I walk.

And the route was not too overgrown.

This stroll down a traffic-less lane was very pleasant, though the guidebook describeed stunning views. Had I taken a wrong turn?

Hawthorn berries are always a happy September sight for me.

The route had rather too much road walking for my liking, though this part was pretty.

And here I climbed up to another described viewpoint only to find that had long since disappeared. What a shame. Maybe in winter?

There's always something to make you smile when you brave an expedition into unknown territory though :0)

 After my walk I took a few minutes to explore the Abbey gardens a little more . The roses were fabulous and the scent divine.

All in all it was a lovely way to spend a morning.
Jacquie x

Thursday 6 September 2018

Six go to Swanage

Hello Lovelies, 
as we return to school this week I'm finally getting round to sharing our main family holiday, which we took in the last week in July. It's another long post but I hope you enjoy a glimpse at our Heatwave week.

This year I decided we should stay in Dorset again,  and return to a beach we first visited on our second ever holiday with children, way back in 2002.

This is that very beach, Studland Bay . It was our first port of call upon our arrival and I was happy to see it was still just as lovely as I recalled.

We spent a happy few hours exploring and paddling before heading off to find our accommodation.

This was our Caravan site, just around the headland in Swanage. This picture was taken the next morning, when Eldest and I headed out for a walk.

There were paths right from our site, up onto these hills (or Downs as they are somewhat confusingly called).

We enjoyed wandering about getting our bearings, and spotting the local wildlife.

These steps were a challenge to climb.

Well, for me at least.

I wanted to walk to Old Harry Rocks, but after a few wrong turns we decided to try it another day, and just enjoy the views from Ballard Down instead.

maybe tomorrow Harry.

Time to head back to the rest of the family, It's looking like a great beach day.

We decided to try the beach closest to our caravan site, Swanage main beach. Here we happily found parking right by the beach. Because we have a rather large two person Kayak this was a huge bonus. 

Just take it off the roof rack and carry it over the soft sand. Easy. 

Another reason this beach suited us so well was because we had the boy's  Nanna with us.  My lovely Mum in Law is not so mobile these days but she does very well and still loves the beach.  It was fun having her with us for the week. All her mixed up words had us in fits of giggles. She didn't seem to mind. Bless her.

The view from Swanage beach is towards the Isle of Wight.

I presume this affects the tides too, as the water level hardly changed throughout the day. How great is that. In the hot sunny week we enjoyed this made it feel even more like the Med. Though they don't have Punch and Judy shows :0)

It was never too crowded and the only thing the boys missed were the big waves of our Cornish holidays, but you can't have everything and this was pretty close to perfect in my eyes.

A short walk from the beach there were streets to explore.

and a pretty harbour to wander around.

But it was the daily kayak that I loved the most. To be able to paddle around in the sheltered bay, occasionally getting splashed with cooling water from your oar, seeing the lovely beach from a different perspective. That was a real joy to me.

This is not me by the way. It's my 18 year old twins. 18! How did that happen?

I think this holiday felt so precious because we are not guaranteed the pleasure of their company next summer...That's only natural I know, but...well...gulp.

So to have ended up in such a lovely spot and to be blessed with the best weather we have had since that first seaside holiday when they were just a year old, it just seemed a dream come true.

It was such a hot week we couldn't be bothered to go exploring in the day.
Instead we headed out in the evening on a couple of occasions, firstly to pretty Corfe Castle village

Which saw me dashing about to get some pictures before the light faded.

So many Swallows here. Lovely to watch.

followed an emergency Chip trip back to Swanage harbour.

Hubby and I wandered about in the dusk, while said chips were shared in the car :0)


Eldest and I bravely got up early one day midweek, to try and reach Old Harry again, but even at 8am it was sweltering on this attempt.

The only place to be was the beach .

Though we did have to buy two parasols for shade.

Most days I would go for a little wander as I can't sit all day.

This is what remains of the old pier. Just look at those colours.

more harbour views.

and street scenes.

all looking perfect with a blue sky backdrop.

Back at our static caravan I was happy to read my library book.

or take short strolls around the local lanes.

On our second evening out we went to see the twin geological marvels of the Jurassic coast, firstly  Lulworth Cove.

And this was walking down to Durdle Door.

Here it is.

complete with swimmers heading through the arch.

Towards the end of the week Eldest and I finally made it to See Old Harry Rocks. By cheating and parking a mile away:0)

I loved watching the Swallows popping in and out of their nests here. I think I will remember 2018 as my Swallow summer. I've seen more this year than ever before.

What a view. So glad we finally made it.

Right, lets walk back, beach time again :0)

I do love a retro postcard and  I vote they  bring back the straw parasols :0)

On our final day also we enjoyed watching the steam trains of the Swanage Railway from the bridge.

The water refilling was fascinating.

and happily we squeezed in a cream tea with a perfect view.

When it was to to pack up the parasols for the last time the light changed and we had to leave in a hurry as lightening bolts struck the sea.  But it didn't rain, just as it hadn't rained for so any weeks, or was it months before?

This was the sunset on our final  night. The next day we would have to leave our sweet  little caravan home with it's lovely sea view. We would have to head inland away from the cooling sea breezes to the sweaty Midlands. I really did not want this holiday to end.

At least I have a good excuse to come back to this area of Dorset, as there are still so many things we didn't get to see.
Jacquie x