THE RAMBLINGS OF A STRUGGLING ARTIST ON LIFE WITH TWO TERRIERS, A PONY WITH ISSUES AND OTHER WILDLIFE AND BIRDS THAT CROSS OUR PATH

20 January 2014

A WEEK IN PICTURES (INCLUDING THE RETURN OF TORNADO)


Apologies for the break in transmission. VERY busy week what with constant chasing of the phone company - we had no land line for over two weeks - pointless physio appointment and ferrying my mum around and visiting her pretty much every day. The Gabapentin for my back pain is making me feel seasick but that's getting better as I get more used to it. I've been sporadic visiting those of you with blogs too. More apologies. 

This post is extremely heavy on the pictures, so I'll try and be succinct with the words. I notice, looking through them, that we've actually had quite a lot of sunshine this week. Why does it not feel like it? In chronological order..........

The Dartmoor Madams looking pleased to see Trigger approaching:


Burning the gorse after cutting close to the Round Pound:



An encounter with a Staffie whose owner seemed to think letting it run around trying to steal picnicking walker's sandwiches and chasing Jack and Snippet whilst standing talking on her mobile for several minutes was responsible behaviour. In the end I had to shout at her  to call it as it refused to leave us alone:


Lone stone:


Back to the wind but enjoying the sun:


Dogs in grass:






Massive clouds, dwarfing the moor:


A lone Rowan in the shelter belt:


Life changing lead arrangement. allowing me to have pony in one hand, dogs in the other:


Fabulous rainbows:



Blue Tits on the feeder at last. They, like the Nuthatches, have learnt to tap on the plastic to release the last few seeds. They are the only two species to have mastered it so far:



Frosty grass sparkling in the morning sun:


Trigger and friends. He's always happy to come home to food and hay:


Furry foal trying to hide behind a rock:


These two Rowans stand alone by the road:


Strange ice formations on the road:


Jack basking in the sun from our only South facing window in the kitchen:
                                      

View from Trigger's paddock:


Today I found many more ponies than I've seen in months......



.....Including the beautiful foal we named Tornado back in July. This is what he looked like then:


And this is him now. Hmmm..........I'm saying nothing. 




Snippet enjoyed playing with him:



He got bored.......
    

......and joined a more suitable friend:


The Robin is enjoying the seed feeder:


So are the Great Tits at last:


Competing with the sparrows:



I'm really getting somewhere with the card printing at last. The company in Cornwall who never answered my emails have done some fantastic proofs for me now and will be sending samples out tomorrow I hope. I will never go near Next again after weeks of wrangling over the fact that they printed the Rainbow Sheep photo with roller lines all over them and then tried to say the lines were in the scan....which they're not. So much for having them ready for Christmas; perhaps for Easter? I'm really excited about what they've achieved with the drawings - they look fantastic in the proofs.  

The Tourettes meeting yesterday was less well attended than the Christmas party, but OB enjoyed seeing some of his friends. He has a nasty head wagging tic at the moment which is giving him headaches poor love. It will pass, only to be replaced by something else, but we hope something less painful and easier to disguise at school for him. So, until next time, here is a photo I love for it's complete lack of focus, taken in the early morning sunshine. Hope you all had a good weekend.


53 comments:

  1. Your shots really do capture the essence of the place.Thanks Em.
    Jane x

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    1. I'm glad you think so Jane - thank you.

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  2. Lovely photos especially the rainbow, the ponies and the birds. Such a gorgeous area for walking and photographing.

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    1. I hate the idea of ever leaving here but we are acutely aware that at some point, as we get older, it will become too difficult. Not yet, but give it ten years and we might be dreaming of central heating and high speed broadband!

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  3. Sorry you haven't had the easiest of weeks. Your pictures of Dartmoor have brightened up my evening. it always wonderful the way you capture how the way the dogs and ponies enjoy the moors. How this week is kinder to you.
    Sarah x

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    1. Thanks Sarah. What I really miss is catching up with others' blogs but I'm putting aside an hour today to do so. x

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  4. Some cracking photos there Em. Love the enormous cloud and the rainbows and the gorse burning ones in particular. Hope your week starts to calm and settle. x

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    1. That cloud was awesome in the true sense of the word. OB would be screaming seeing me use that word as I'm constantly grizzling about its over-use in his peer group! x

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  5. Tornado may be shaggier but still very foal like! Gorgeous pictures. Glad you got the phone line fixed at last.

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    1. Me too but we have no answer machine now. Could be worse, our neighbour has had no broadband for three weeks now!

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  6. Lovely to see the week in photos. Tornado still looks a cutey even has the mark in the backside as well as forehead. You were so right to have words with the staffie owner why are people so annoying.

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    1. She was just really lucky there wasn't a fight. Also, Jack is very much the stud at the moment (balls coming off on Thursday...) and there could have been some Patter-staff-jack puppies in the offing. God I hate those made up names; it was only a few days ago that I realised we were in possession of a Patterjack. I nearly re-homed him.

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  7. I do love these photos Em, how wonderful they are. Hope the weeks ahead will be a lot less stressful for you.

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  8. Lovely week in pictures. Adore the "Massive Cloud" one. Fabulous !
    Today I posted some random cloud photos from last year. So we are almost twins !

    Question ? did you get the cards I sent ? I am not sure when I write addresses in the UK as they have lots of lines. I rather like them, we are so boring here in the States only 3 or 4 lines.

    I love to read your blog but the tiny thin black on the deep gray, even with my glasses it is hard to read. But since no one else said anything I think it must be me.

    cheers, parsnip

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    1. I haven't had any cards yet but things can take SO long to get here from the States. Your Christmas card arrived on Christmas Eve but I bet you sent it a long time before that. I have friends in Washington DC and their card always arrives around new year. I'll come and look at your clouds in a sec....

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  9. Another stunning sequence of photos. The stormy skies are amazing this winter!

    Wait until Tornado sheds his winter coat. You may get a nice surprise. The fact that he is still out there after the round ups might mean that his commoner owner has seen some potential in him. Let`s hope so!

    BB sent me one of your Dartmoor Christmas cards and it was beautiful. I would love to buy a set of your new cards when they are ready.

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    1. I think he's going to be stunning in summer. I don't know who owns him as there seem to be absolutely loads of unbranded mares this year. The more responsible owners are actually getting rid of most of their ponies because it's just not worth their while and irresponsible owners let a stallion out without any thought for those trying to stop so many foals being born. Next post I must try and remember to put a link in to a petition about it. Thanks for reminding me!

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  10. Fabulous photos - impressive. Love those massive clouds and the rainbow.

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    1. That first rainbow looked like it was entering the ground. Amazing.

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  11. Difficult to choose a favorite from this run of photos--the overall sense was of having been right out in your weather! I'm intrigued once again with the wind-twisted look of bleached grass and bare-branched trees which is so similar to the high plains of the interior west.
    Glad that something is in the offing with cards from your drawings and photos--they are so worth the sharing.

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    1. I would love to see those plains MM. I think they're probably on a massively bigger scale than Dartmoor though. It seems big to me, but your plains are just immense. Maybe one day....

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  12. I like the helpful new leash! I didn't know that the tics change...the man I knew (way back when,) had the head issues. It seemed to get worse when he was nervous. He seemed a bit shy. Cute, too. Curly hair like my son's. :-)

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    1. The new leash is fantastic. I realised it's also hi-vis, not that we get many cars round here but I'll be out with a torch later to check it out.

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  13. Your photos absolutely blow me away! Don't know where to start to pick out my favorites. So love your blog. I am a retired school teacher and am fairly familiar with Tourettes. School and social situations are hard for such children. Thankfully computers make people more aware of these kind of problems and hopefully more understanding.

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    1. I do hope so - it's such a cruel condition and saps self confidence. We're told one in a hundred children have it but I don't ever see any, other than in our Tourettes group. It implies that they're hiding away, which is so terrible. Thanks so much for your support Chris.

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  14. Wonderful photographs Em - As usual they give us such a flavour of Dartmoor (and of dogs and ponies!)
    Your lovely cards arrived this morning - thank you so much. I had thought of them for Christmas cards but really they make lovely 'everything' cards, so I would be only too happy to buy them as I did order them. Please let me pay for them - you would need to send price and address. Hope you are not offended at me asking, but I feel awful that I said I would like some and now you have sent them. They are absolutely lovely.

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    1. Absolutely not Pat. They were a present. x

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  15. Lovely photos of the moor in winter sunshine, Em. I feel as though I'm walking in all that space and wonderful countryside, too! The cloud photo is fabulous - so dramatic and so are the beautiful rainbows. I love the pics of the dogs and ponies, as well, especially Snippet making friends with the pony.

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    1. He absolutely loves playing with them but there just haven't been the same access this year. Never mind - we may have a more permanent herd next year.

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  16. Lovely photos of the moor, ponies, dogs and garden birds :) As Wendy says I always feel as though I am there walking with you :) I especially love the frosty grass in sunlight shot and the last photo :)

    I hope the seasickness effect with the tablets wears off soon for you and that the Tourettes group gives you and OB some support.

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    1. The seasickness comes and goes thank goodness. I'm feeling better today - thank you!

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  17. Lovely Pony images Em and the massive sky and the rugged moorland images.

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    1. Thanks Roy. I try not to overdo the pony images but it's so tempting.

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  18. Do like little Tornado, even if he does look a but 'teddy bearish' at the moment, beautiful set of photos as always ;) x

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    1. He looks like a teddy bear-ish calf Thelma. He'd probably be worth more stuffed sadly. He's one I wish I could lead home and put in with Trigger....if we had the land. If it wasn't for the markings he'd be unrecognisable though, like all the others!

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  19. Always love the Dartmoor Madams! It was great to be able to see all the ponies, Tornado was darling even though a bit woolly. Can't talk as mine are wrecks!

    Shots of the moor were gorgeous, especially love the massive cloud! Such wide open spaces.

    Love the new leash for Jack and Snippet! Making your life easier I hope. I really dislike it when people let their animals run amok. The woman needed to make her mind whether she was going to be out with her dog or chatting on the phone.

    I hate to hear you are having trouble with your back knowing how debilitating it can be. The drug you are taking we call Neurontin on this side of the pond. Be SURE you read up on the side effects for it. I took it several years ago and had to come off of it. I had trouble concentrating , problems with coordination, extreme fatigue and dizziness. I hope you back improves and maybe the physio will help.

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    1. Hi Gail, I know that dizziness can be a side effect and I hope, being on quite a low dose, it won't get any worse. I'm taking 300mg three times a day but when I upped it to 400mg, the difference was huge; I kept toppling over! I'd rather suffer the pain than that. Unfortunately, the physio doesn't know what to do with me and one of the exercises she gave me was agony and I haven't done it since. She'll just refer me back to the spinal team when I tell her they're not helping next time I see her, which I don't think will be a lot of use. Never mind - at least I can walk and I'm thankful for that every day.

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  20. Whenever I see the countryside like this....it really knocks my socks off, Em!
    Those ponies are so adorable...especially Tornado..with his winter coat on!
    Hope you have a great week ahead...
    Cheers!
    Linda :o)

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    1. You too Linda. I'd love to stroke those ponies but I haven't got to know them that well this year. Last year, there were a couple who let me get really close and, when their winter coats came through, they were plush and gorgeously soft.

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  21. Bloody Staffie owners - they're as bad as Cro's neighbours, all that smoke and all. Poor little OB, but he'll be alright, I am sure.

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    1. I hope so Tom - thank you. As for Staffie owners, we had one denying a horrific attack on a cow a couple of years ago, even though there were many witnesses. Poor cow had its cheek bitten off. The owner also tried to sue the farmer as she twisted an ankle whilst running away from said cow, who was pretty upset. Unbelievable.

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  22. Ooooooooooooooooh looks like a spammer above there Em! Bloody nerve!

    I missed our walk on the beach yesterday so Bing is desperate to go and get some exercise so I'll be taking him today - after buying new balls - we do go through a few.

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    1. I'll be deleting as soon as I can sign in! How did that get through the filters........grrrrr. Talking of balls, Jack is losing his tomorrow.....

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  23. So glad to have found your lovely blog via Rusty Duck ...

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    1. Hi Jane - welcome and lovely to have you visiting.

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  24. Wonderful photos Em, I love seeing the ponies, Tornado has become so hairy! I think my favourite is the massive clouds over the moors. I've had more luck with birds feeding in the garden recently and a record 5 great tits in one tree feeding on an assortment of food.
    That is the trouble with gabapentin and all similar drugs-side effects v pain relief. I think you are doing really well and not giving up on them too soon.

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    1. I'll just have to keep the dose low. Always happy to have your expert input - thank you.

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  25. A beautiful series of pictures. A vast empty land with an equally endless sky inhabited only by dogs and horses.
    It doesn’t get any better.

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    1. No - I don't think so, but I may be biased!

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  26. So many lovely photos! I can't believe how well behaved Snippet and Jack are with the ponies! Sorry to hear you are suffering with back pain and med side effects - can't be nice :( wishing you a speedy recovery x

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    1. Thanks Lou - I don't think you'd say that if you saw Jack on a bad day with me shouting at him to keep away! Snippet's an old hand though and they seem to know that and have fun with him.

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Thank you so much for leaving a comment. It's great to read them and I will always try to reply.