Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Blog of the week - menopausaloldbag (MOB)

"Hello Mrs A, I'm Dr B", he said smiling at her as he snapped on his latex gloves. "Now just relax for me dear", he instructed as he picked up the speculum, ready to insert. "Oh for the love of God", he stuttered in astonishment, stepping backwards.

Just what did the doctor see? To find out more you will have to rush over to this week’s Blog of the week, menopausaloldbag (MOB).

This is a blog that in the words of its creator is “The almost daily diary well almost absolutely never daily but possibly weekly, ramblings and whingeing of a fifty year old woman enjoying the joys of Gods biggest joke on women to date - NO NOT MEN - just the flippin MENOPAUSE!”

What she neglects to say is that it is also witty, thoughtful, sad, uplifting and informative. It is a very well written blog in a style that draws you in and keeps your interest, almost like having a chat with a friend, one with loads of good anecdotes and a great delivery.

The down side to this blog is that the posts are not that frequent, once you have read one you want the next, but given the length of the posts its probably a good thing as I have other things to do in a day and would only sit here and read them.
A quick thank you to every one who left comments about Kep, he is on the mend and after writing this I am calling the vets as I think he will not need to see them today, fingers crossed.

Picture to day in honour for the blog of the week menopausaloldbag (MOB), it’s the only shot I have that shows part of Scotland, it’s the bit on the skyline the rest is of Crummock water in the lake district.

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Monday, June 29, 2009


It’s been nearly a week since I last posted here, the longest gap there has been on this blog. The reason for this has been that Kep has been very ill and both Caz and I have been very worried about him.

It started Friday morning; he could hardly walk and was finding it impossible to hold his head straight and his eye were ticking side to side, like a speeding metronome. We both thought he had had something like a stroke and got him to the vets as soon as they were open. The vet said it looked like brain damage of some sort and pumped him full of drugs, then asked us to bring him back the next day to see if he was improving. I have to admit I thought that it was going to be the end for Kep and the rest of the day was spent trying to keep him as comfortable as possible and stopping him from hurting himself as he staggered around the house.

Saturday morning brought a slight improvement and a trip to see another vet at our local practice who said it could be Vestibular Syndrome and that he could well recover some what over the space of a few weeks. So we have spent the bulk of the weekend watching over him and encouraging him to do as much as he can, while still staying safe.

The result is a much improved dog, he is still nowhere like the old Kep, but he is definitely in there and fighting to come out. At the moment he is lying down stairs making this one of the only blog post I’ve written when he has not been lying at my feet.

Photo for the day is Kep out in the water, this is where he is his happiest, splashing around and no doing as he is told.

Now playing: The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain - Dy-na-mi-tee
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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Blog of the week - travelling, but not in love

Single male. Attractive. Solvent. GSOH. Platinum Frequent Flyer. WLTM similar.

No it’s not me, in fact only one out of the lot could be attributed to me, but today is not about me, it’s about this weeks blog of the week.

Now the thing about blogging that I love so much is the way it lets you see how other people live their lives, and when I came across a blog about an English man living in Paris, I was hooked. Here was a blog about someone like me living in one of the greatest cities in the world; I thought that I would get to see a different Paris away from the tourist and hype, being described in terms I could understand.
I certainly got to see a different side of Paris and indeed of all life itself, perhaps I should have read his profile a bit better.

I know I have quite a mixed following, so before you all rush of to read this blog a word of warning, it is a very open and frank blog, written in a very articulate way, with description that can sear themselves into your mind, covering the whole range of human experience. If you think that some of the content might upset you, don’t read it.

As for me I love the whole thing, not that I’m not a little shocked at some of it, but I am not living that life, just enjoying seeing a life well lived.

His post are all excellent, but one in particular stands out as one of my all time favourite blog post, anywhere, so here are 2 links this one is to his main page, and this one to my favourite post. This post will ring bells for anyone who has ever sat and listened to older relatives talking about people, who they knew back in the day.

So Blog of the week goes to Travelling, but not in love.

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Monday, June 22, 2009

Robert De Niro's Waiting

My not so little brother was 40 over the weekend, so Saturday night saw us out on the town for the first time in a long time, and what a great night it was too. We finished up in the Valiant, a pub I had not been in for years, singing along to the hits of Bananarama with the rest of the pubs customers, which was a bit surreal as they were a mix of leather clad bikers, Goths and a few that looked like computer geeks! All singing along to “Robert De Niros Waiting” drunk at around 12:30, what a great night.

Sunday was a quite one as I had a bit of a hangover, a quick walk and then watched the GP.

Now I’m trying to get some motivation to try some light house work or even some gardening, but before I sign off here is a link to a site that has 3 of the funniest videos I have seen for a long time, all are reworking of classic tracks and if you are a music fan especially the 80s you will love this. Let me know what you think.
Photo today is a close up of the door to Wetton church, the full church will be on the Leek daily photo blog tomorrow

Now playing: Bananarama - Robert De Niro's Waiting
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Thursday, June 18, 2009

Blog of the week - Big Blue Barn West

When I was growing up my parents told me that they beat me because they loved me.

This is the first line of a most extraordinary blog, part life story, part travelogue, all well written and with a sense of humour and timing. I can not remember how I came across this blog, it was already well into the story of her life, but even starting it in the middle I was instantly captivated and spent the next few days reading all of her old posts. I will warn you that some of them can be quite upsetting, but the uplifting ones make up for them, both types are amongst the best writing I have come across on the web, its more like having a friend talk to you.

At the moment she is recounting her trip to New Orleans and it is a fascinating glimpse in to that part of the world as seen through the eyes of a tourist, almost as if you were there. But she does not just leave it at that you also get great photos and she look up links about the things she has seen so that if your interest has been peaked you can instantly get more information.

So my Blog of the week is Big Blue Barn West. Get over there and enjoy.

Now playing: Roy Orbison - Oh, Pretty Woman
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Wednesday, June 17, 2009


Twittered, I think that what you could call it at least that is my name for what happened yesterday to my blog. As a very keen blogger I check my site stats on a regular basis, so I known how many people normally visit in a day. So imagine my surprise when the visitor figures jumped up by 100%. My first reaction was that they were all lost, but on checking where they had come from it was all from the same place, Twitter! Now I’ve never twittered, not even one small tweet, so I have no idea why these people are visiting, not that I’m complaining the more the merrier, but if someone could enlighten me as to the reason for all these new readers, I would be very happy.

The next post will be the Blog of the week post, this week’s has already been picked, but as I have said before if you know of any good blogs let me know and I’ll give them a look. Also I am looking for guest bloggers so again if you want to have a go or would like to volunteer someone I will see what I can do.

Photo today is of a pink flower, I have no idea what it is, but it look so pretty covered in the rain drops.

Now playing: Blondie - Die Young Stay Pretty
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Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Blurb Blurb Blurb

Great excitement today as we have just received our copy of the book we did of Kep from Blurb. If you have not come across this company before check out the link opposite and have a look at what they can offer. I am thinking of using them to provide a number of different books, so this one was something of a test case and here is how they have done.

First off their site, it’s great and very easy to navigate, even using the slow internet connection at work. The lay out and feel is very good and I had no trouble finding any of the information I needed. They also have lots of other people’s books on display which gave me loads of ideas when working on my own.

To actually make a book you need to down load their own software, which I did with no problems and it seems to be virus free. The program is easy to use and still gives you plenty of creative freedom to do as you want. Once the book was designed I up loaded it to their site and ordered it, again all very straight forward and simple.

It arrived earlier than expected, very well packaged and in perfect condition. The book itself looks great, very professional and of a good quality, the only down side is that all the shots look a little dark compared to what I had on screen, but that is a problem I have had with printed images before and think that my monitor is a little to bright so I am correcting my images a shade darker than I should. That said the book is still very good, it is only that I am so picky about my images that I even noticed.

Overall 10 out of 10, I will definitely be using them again, so look out for more books from me in the coming months.

Now playing: Tears For Fears - Pale Shelter
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Friday, June 12, 2009

Blog of the week. Ramsay daily photo

As promises the announcement of my first blog of the week and as it’s the first I had lots to choose from, which probably made it harder. So what am I looking for in a blog of the week? Well a good blog, one that interesting, well written or well photographed or both, one that is a cut above the rest and can inspire people to keep there own blogs going. Also I’m looking for the blogs that promote a better way of doing things or have a fresh take on old ideas.

So the first Blog of the week is Ramsay daily photo by Babooshka.

This was one of the first blogs I started to read regularly and has always gone that bit farther than other daily photo blogs, for a start it is just as much about the writing than the photos and Babooshka supports others blogger by commenting, and not just little “I’ve been here” comments, but good insightful feedback. She inspired me to start the Leek daily photo blog and has picked up my spirits with her comments on countless occasions.

I know that this is one of her busiest weeks with the TT races taking place, but I hope that she will do a guest blog for me in the near future.

Now playing: Kate Bush - The Man With The Child In His Eyes
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Thursday, June 11, 2009

Must dash

Time fly’s by when you have lots to do and trying to keep 3 blogs going certainly makes for a busy life.

The Leek blog is doing very well and has so far giving me 118 new photos of my local area that I would not have taken normally. That has been one of the reasons I have been as busy as I have been getting to known the local villages and capturing some really good images along the way.

The photo blog is also taking some of my time as I continue with the photo course; I have added another update on there today along with some photos to illustrate the post.

One of my projects that I have just finished is a photo book about Kep, see the link opposite, this is a collaboration with Caz and has been done to give us a record of him growing up and has been done now as doing something like this after he has gone would be just too painful, it also give us chance to work on book two as Kep seems to be in the best of health and set to collect another catalogue of photos. Any feed back in to how the book looks, you can only view the first few pages, would be very welcome. Two more books are in the planning stage, one based on the photos taken for this blog in its first year and on based on the Leek blog showing images of Leek and the Staffordshire Moorlands.

I hope to have my first blog of the day announced tomorrow, I still need to get the format right and produce an award that is suitable, so fingers crossed it could be you (really the first one is a regular reader of this blog)

Photo today is an abstract image, of what I will reveal tomorrow

For Lisa
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Monday, June 8, 2009

400 Duck! and beyond.

Well I never expected to be writing this one, as the blog was only intended to run to 365 posts, but as most of you will know once you start doing this it does start to get addictive. Thank you to all the people that have read this blog over the past year or so, also a big thank you to my wife who puts up with me rushing off to “do a post” or to check if I have had any comments.

This blog was started with out any real thought or knowledge about what it would entail, its aim was to chart a year in my life and to get a wider audience for my photos, both of which it has done wonderfully. As the year went on it started to get a life of its own and evolved into its present style, without any real idea of where it was going (quite a bit like me).

Now it has come to a point where its old aims are no longer valid and so it has become a bit aimless and even a bit pointless. So could it be time to just end it, like so many blogs seem to do, the idea has crossed my mind, or I could try and inject a new purpose into the blog, give it a more defined role.
Well I have gone for the second option, a new role for an old blog.

First I will be keeping the photos, it was always the main drive and it keeps me taking different images.

Second I will be looking for some guest bloggers, so if you want to do a post on here, a bit about you and your blog, drop me a mail and I will try and fit you in.

I will also be reviewing some of my favourite blog’s; I hope to be picking one a week and again if you think there is a blog out there that needs highlighting post a comment so I can have a look at it.
I’m excited just from writing this post, there’s life in the old dog still.


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Friday, June 5, 2009

The right to vote

This blog has been visited by people from 166 countries, a number of which don’t have free and fair elections. So I should feel very lucky to live here where we have regular and fair elections to choose who leads us. But yesterday I decided not to vote, I think for the first time since I was able to vote. Now I would be amongst the first to complain if my right to vote was taken away, but it’s also my right not to vote.
So why didn’t I vote, well for a start I had no idea who was running or what they stood for, or what it would mean for me if such and such won. Now part of this is my fault as I do not read junk mail, only mail that is sent direct to me, but also it is the fault of the candidates as none have knocked on my door and tried to win me round.
Secondly these were elections for local councils and the European parliament, both bodies in which I have little trust or belief and I think have very little influence over my life.
Lastly who are these people and what qualifications do they have to run the council, unlike a doctor or an architect I don’t think that they have spent years learning how to manage a council, more likely that if they have any formal training it is in how to be a better Politian. With all the current scandal about expense claims and the back stabbing in the Labour party, is it any wonder that a lot of us have just given up on the whole thing.
Picture today is another from the English Lake District, this is Blencathra, just east of Keswick.

Now playing: Kaiser Chiefs - The Angry Mob
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Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Making money from Blogging

Mixed fortunes so far this week, cracking weather but the back is still playing up and stopping me from enjoying it too much.

Yesterday saw us celebrating our 13th wedding anniversary; I can not believe that it has been that long; the time has just flown by. To celebrate we walked along the canal, at the back of the house, to the Holly bush at Denford. What a great spot to spend a warm summer evening, we had a meal first and then sat by the canal to finish our drinks, before walking back home. On the way we were very luck in seeing a young Badger just on the other side of the canal, he was making so much noise that he must not have heard us coming.

I have just read an article about earning money from Blogging. This article stated that you could earn $100,000’s with out any real effort!!!! Has anyone ever met anyone how has managed to do this? Looking around the web there seems to be loads of get rich quick schemes, I’m tempted to try and have a go, so any tips or hint will be gratefully received.

The picture for today is a view of Keswick in the English lake district, taken from Walla crag.

Now playing: Jem - Save Me
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