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

25 June 2014

POST #216


Busyness overload has rendered me incapable of thinking of any kind of title, let alone something pithy or witty, so I thought it best not even to try. I don't know what's happened since we got back from holiday but I seem to be trying, and failing, to catch up all the time. So many apologies if I haven't been commenting on your blogs if you write them; I am reading as much as I can but I realised I hadn't posted for a week so am getting down to it tonight. I have a small window as Great Ormond Street Hospital have sent through a MASS of forms and questionnaires to fill in that have to be sent back quickly - we're off there in two weeks so M and I are sitting every night wrestling over the questions. Poor OB has six to fill in by himself! Well - at least they're being thorough and trying to get a full and rounded picture of him. More than I can say for any institution we've come up against so far. We're suitably impressed, if a little overwhelmed by the paperwork. 

The weather is still absolutely amazing and there are Dragonflies darting around my favourite little boggy pond, which is getting close to drying out. Isn't this Four Spotted Chaser a beauty? 



Keeled Skimmers mating:


Post coital rest?


I took a picture of these clouds yesterday as I hadn't seen one for so long:


Trigger is home and leaving a lot of stuff in the paddock uneaten. We'll see in winter....


Meadow Brown in the morning dew, sullying the picture slightly by sitting on a bit of poo:


Ponies hiding in the early shade of the rocks:


Nib:



Scut:


Obligatory Meadow Pipits:



As well as fooling most tourists here that they are Skylarks by rising up into the air singing, this one is affecting the tufty headed look too.....


...........ha ha - only the wind.


Stonechat giving me the cold shoulder this morning. No sun but it came out this afternoon having not rained...AGAIN:


Evening sunshine walking up to feed Trigger:


So many grasses in flower and not enough paper hankies in the world to blow my nose:


Cuckoo Spit. In case you don't know, which I'm sure most of you do, Cuckoo Spit is plant sap, frothed up by the nymphs of Froghoppers in which they can bury themselves to stop from dehydrating, getting too hot or cold or to hide from predators. I didn't poke about to see who was inside: 


All that hay has been baled now:



Navelwort, which grows out of every crack in every wall round these parts, seems to be sending out much taller and many more flower spikes this year, as if these conditions are exactly what it likes. I wonder if anyone else has noticed more of a profusion this year or whether it's my imagination:


An online questionnaire for GOSH, which they estimate will take us at least an hour and a half to complete, is calling me, so I'd better get on with it. At least I didn't have to take OB to the pool tonight. I convinced him that it was going to rain when we discussed it this morning so he got the bus home and I actually got some housework done after taking my mum to Waitrose. They're doing it up within an inch of its life and every time we go, a new fashionable edifice has appeared, this time the fish counter which is verging on the Selfridges food hall. I peeked behind a hoarding and saw what will be the new coffee shop and thought I was on the Piccadilly Line of the London Underground, such was the tiling. I'm procrastinating. So, until next time, here are those hot dogs, managing to keep their tongues from lolling. 


46 comments:

  1. Hi EM Don'y worry about writing commentetcor een blogging if you are overwhelmed at present. Just do what you can. Now these photographs you have taken are absolutely outstanding. The detail that you have captured in the Dragonflies is utterly amazing. Lovely to see the beautiful clouds and Moors with the dogs running free. I hope you get all the forms completed soon. Take caare, it will all be worth it in the end.

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    1. Thanks Margaret, you reassurances are much appreciated, on all counts.

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  2. Form filling -AAAAAGGGGHHHHH!
    Hope you get them done with no hitches.
    Your photos are just incredible. Do you realise that you have had better weather down your way than we have had here - no chance of haymaking for us yet.

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    1. We're usually green with envy at your good weather so it's very nice to have had it good for so long. It's absolutely tipping down now. Good for the garden....

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  3. I hope that the form filling goes OK, I know that you know, but try and put down as much info as possible, assume that they know nothing at all. Just a tip from my form filling for people applying to various agencies, the more you tell the better from my experience. Anyway, forms aside, I just hope that it goes well and that you get what you need from it for all of the family. Your photos are of course stunning! Do not worry about visiting or blogging, you have other things to attend to and I am sure that everyone understands. Take care and sending good thoughts and hugs. xx

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    1. Thanks for your good thoughts - much appreciated. We really are including EVERY detail but whether they'll have time to read it is another matter!

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  4. It's crazyville here too..I feel guilty about not posting or commenting much...but that's life!
    Jane x

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    1. Perhaps it's the time of year; I don't know. Sorry you're suffering the craziness too. xx

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  5. When I was young I was told those Dragonflys were called Darning Needles and they shot very painful needles at you. Scared the bejesus outa me at the time.

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    1. I bet it did! I'll look at them in a new light from now on.

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  6. Your dragonflies are just stunning! Beautiful creatures.

    I love the Dartmoor foals too. We have so few in the Forest this year. It`s good to see that yours are doing so well.

    Good luck with the forms and with the visit to GOS. It will save precious time when you get there and will help their assessment, so worth it, but not the thing you want to be doing on a hot summer`s evening!

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    1. Luckily it's horrible and rainy this afternoon, so we should get a lot done tonight!

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  7. I always have that rut after a vacation or holiday as well. Love that picture of the bailed hay :)

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  8. Glad you have an appointment at GOSH. Wonderful photographs, amazes me how you get those pictures of the dragonflys without them making off!

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    1. I'm not as close to them as you think - that's why. The new camera has the ability to zoom on the macro setting and produce this quality. Now I know how other people do it!

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    1. Is that it Mr Tom? Regarding your deleted comment, you have it!

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  10. Good grief, that's a lot of paperwork!

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    1. A bit more than I expected. Lovely to see you today!

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  11. Stunningly beautiful detail on the dragonflies. And of course I love the ponies.
    Good luck on the paperwork.

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    1. Thank goodness a lot of them only involve circling things like 'never, sometimes, often, constantly'!

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  12. Outstanding photos as always !
    Love the ponies and of course The Boys.

    cheers, parsnip

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    1. Those boys BOTH had to have a bath yesterday after poo-rolling. I'm having to buy some odour reducing dog shampoo which I can ill afford.

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    2. I wonder if tomato juice would work ? it helps when the dogs get a little to friendly with a skunk.
      I don't know if that is expensive ?

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  13. Wow, your photos are beautiful. As I child I believed that it was cuckoos spitting on the plants! Hope your form filling goes well xx

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  14. Wow, Em! These are a stellar series of photographs, especially those first Dragonfly selections! It was really hard not to make an inappropriate joke about one of the photos too, but not to worry, I am on my best behaviour.

    I also really loved the photo of the Pony sticking its head out above the rocks. Glad you have such beautiful weather there at the moment and it's great you are making the most of it! :)

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    1. No problem with inappropriate jokes Christian. Sadly, the weather has gone and we are shrouded in mist and rain today!

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  15. A beautiful set of photos - the dragonflies are just stunning! Good luck with the form for OB - at least as you say they are being thorough.

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    1. Absolutely. I hope it means they'll know ALL about him when we get there....hmmmm.

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  16. I showedthe dragonfly to my son, and he freaked out. Wuss.

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    1. That's so funny. They are a bit freaky close up though. Imagine if they were super-sized. I believe there were GIANT ones at the time of the dinosaurs but don't tell your son that....

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  17. such cute ponies! loved your dragons, too. (i call them bi-planes). :)

    good luck with all the hospital forms!

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    1. Two and three quarter hours later - we're still not finished with the online one!

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  18. Oh my goodness! Those dragonflies shots are amazing Em. Wow! No offence, but through the Nikon lens you just bumped up from outstanding amateur to new professional. A well deserved step in status for an artist such as you. Have a great weekend.

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    1. Thanks so much Mark. Compliments are far easier to take when you;'re not face to face with someone!

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  19. Our Navalworts are super-big this year too - must have been that dry spell (broken as of yesterday).

    Lovely photos, and gosh, your new camera takes amazing closeups of the insects and birds. I hope you soon get the forms completed and can breath a sigh of relief - until the appointment anyway. Good luck with it.

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    1. Glad I'm not going senile and imagining giants BB - thank you. We're STILL doing the online one. 4 1/2 hours so far!

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  20. Amazing pics, I did enjoy them, thank you.

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    1. Thanks Cait. Sorry I've been such a rubbish follower recently.

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  21. The dragonfly photos are stunning! And I knew about the spittle in biological context, but the delightful English common names were new to me! Cuckoo spit and frog hoppers :)

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    1. I knew you would know Margarethe! Aren't the names lovely? it's also known as frig spit or snake spit but not round these parts.

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  22. Loved the hay fields and the pony pics! The one head shot of the bay foal is super.

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    1. I'd like to take him home with me Gail!

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