New Years resolutions and projects

I did not make any real new year resolutions but there are a few things I am intending to do.

I want to get more studio photography done and I want to try and make sure that I get out to Hartsholme Park and Whisby Nature reserve a bit more often for some wildlife photograph.

This year will be spent trying to figure out what are the main types of photography I want to do and which focal length lens I prefer to do those types of photographs.  Then next year i’ll be undertaking a bit of a photographic prune of equipment and setting my self up with just what I really want.

When and and about with the Leica I have proven to myself how few focal lengths you actually need.

On a more personal note I want to continue with my diet and weight loss, I am just about there now despite Christmas but want to ensure  I do not slip back into old ways.

Lastly I want to get my music a lot better this year.  I found last year with everything that happened it was far too easy to let a couple of months slip past and I had not picked up a banjo or sat and played at our piano.  So January will be a month where I start gently but ensure I get down at least a couple of practice sessions each week.

Snows Coming

Leica M4 – Fuji Film

The weather forecast is not looking good the next few days and as someone who commutes by motorcycle, i’ll be digging out my electrically heated waist coat.  Generally here in Lincolnshire, unless you live out over the wolds we do not see much snow and as most motorists in the UK do not like switching from their summer or general purpose tires its a good job.  You do not need much of a coating of snow to bring the UK to a halt.

Journals, Notebooks and Pens

In my teenage years I occasional kept a diary and loved to use an cheap plastic fountain pen.  My handwriting has never been good so I had to write very slow and carefully to get anything down.   I am by nature a poor speller and and grammar is not perfect by any means, as any longterm reader of this blog will know.

Since then my note taking has gone electronic but I still occasionally bought the odd fountain pen until ten years ago I bought a very expensive (well for me) Cross Century, and I found using it for notes occasional at work slowed me down, helped me think and definitely having to concentrate improved my hand writing.

Well last March with our local family stationary shop closing down I treated myself to a nice all metal Waterman Hemisphere fountain pen.  Its a bit more rugged then my Cross and more suitable for work.  At the same time I went switched back from using an electronic diary and journal to a paper one.  Since then I have really gotten bitten by the bug of using nice pens, good quality paper and trying out new inks.  I now find myself ‘borrowing’ Caroline’s Pelikan M800 and have treated myself to a nice TWSBI VAC700R with an italic nib.

So down the rabbit hole of the fountain pen world I find myself sinking, and planning my next purchase.

Tree Pruning and Gardening

Leica M10 50mm Summilux

Summer seems a long time a go now, but there is still work to be done in the garden.  When we moved in a number of the boards and feature bushes were badly over grown.  Over the last couple of years we have slowly gotten the eastern boarder under control and so this winter we care concentrating on the western boarder.  It needs to be heavily cut and about every second overgrown bush taken out.

Eventually the bottom corner opposite out hens will be the bee corner, where we will have one or two hives to provide us with fresh honey.

First week back at work

Thats the first week of 2018 finished but for me its going to be a long week as I am working Friday night and Saturday night on some IT projects.

The month is looking busy and I just hope I can get out and do some photography and not just sit at a computer all the time.

Boxing Day – The Family Visit

Today is Boxing Day here in the UK.

Its similar to America’s Black Friday in that the sales start.  I have heard a few reasons why it got its name; one that workers kept a box, and any tips got put into it and on the day after Christmas they would break open the box and spend the money.  The other is that it was the day servants would get they Christmas box present and sent home to have the day off with their family.

Here in the brown household we have about a dozen family members paying a visit and will have three dogs and a snake in the house today.  It will be great to see then all again and its the last day of our holiday; we are back to work tomorrow for the remainder of the week.

Merry Christmas 2017

Leica Summicron 35mm

Merry Christmas everyone.  Its likely to be a light blog week this week, we are at home for today and tomorrow with guests visiting both days but for the rest of the week we are working.

The Night Before Christmas

On the Biking Blog “Ride it like you stole it!” which is sadly no more by Dave Dragon, there was a poem “The Biker’s Night Before Christmas”.

I have posted this before but as this is my last post before Christmas I thought it was worth posting again.

 

Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the pad,

There was nada happenin’, now that’s pretty bad.

The woodstove was hung up in that stocking routine,

In hopes that the Fat Boy would soon make the scene.

With our stomachs packed with tacos and beer,

My girl and I crashed on the couch for some cheer.

When out in the yard there arose such a racket,

I ran for the door and pulled on my jacket.

I saw a large bro’ on a ’56 Pan

Wearin’ black leathers, a cap, and boots (cool biker, man).

He hauled up the bars on that bikeful of sacks,

And that Pan hit the roof like it was running on tracks.

I couldn’t help gawking, the old guy had class.

But I had to go in — I was freezing my ass.

Down through the stovepipe he fell with a crash,

And out of the stove he came dragging his stash.

With a smile and some glee he passed out the loot,

A new jacket for her and some parts for my scoot.

He patted her fanny and shook my right hand,

Spun on his heel and up the stovepipe he ran.

From up on the roof came a great deal of thunder,

As that massive V-twin ripped the silence asunder.

With beard in the wind, he roared off in the night,

Shouting, “Have a cool Yule, and to all a good ride!”

Enjoy the Christmas Holiday, we have a little more shopping to do and family and friends coming round over the following days so no more photography until the new year, but I need to find a few spare hours as I have some final post processing to do from my last studio session.

What ever your religion or even none, enjoy the holiday.

 

Bodhi Day

December 8th – On Bodhi day some Buddhists celebrate Gautama’s attainment of enlightenment under the Bodhi tree at Bodhgaya, India.

Hanukkah

December 9th – Hanukkah is the Festival of Lights and marks the restoration of the temple by the Maccabees in 164 BCE. Hanukkah is celebrated at roughly the same time as Christmas, but there is no connection at all between the festivals.

Yule

December 21st – Yule is the time of the winter solstice, when the sun child is reborn, an image of the return of all new life born through the love of the Gods. Within the Northern Tradition Yule is regarded as the New Year.

Christmas

December 25th – The day when Western Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ.

Oshogatsu

January 1st – Shinto New Year, one of the most popular occasions for shrine visits.

Guru Gobind Singh

January 5th – Guru Gobind Singh (1666-1708) was the tenth and last of the Sikh Gurus. He instituted the Five Ks and established the Order of the Khalsa.

Orthodox Christmas

January 7th – Most Orthodox churches use the Julian rather than the Gregorian version of the Western calendar. As a result, they celebrate Christmas 13 days later than other Christian churches.

Makar Sankranti

January 14th – Makar Sankranti is one of the most important festivals of the Hindu calendar and celebrates the sun’s journey into the northern hemisphere.

The Holidays are Coming! Gardening and DIY

The Christmas holidays are fast approaching; were working the Christmas week so this week is our holiday. The main jobs are tidying the garden, cutting down some of the more overgrown shrubs and starting the clear the bottom corner where we are planning on having our bees.

In the house we have decorated for Christmas and also done a little DIY. The house is flood wired for phone, but we do not use it as we have wireless phones at home. The wiring is old and causes interference, so I have been doing a little rewiring, so only the alarm system is still connected and the rest of the phone sockets can now all be removed when we decorate the house finally.