Put an End to Plastic Pollution …… Re-use, Don’t Dispose

It’s a staggering statistic, but between us, as a nation, we throw away an estimated 300 billion pieces of plastic waste every year! A lot of this waste is single use plastic such as water bottles, cleaning solution bottles such as bleach and washing liquid, plastic bags, cups, plates, knives, forks and spoons.

Even though we have recycling bins available, a lot of single use plastic waste doesn’t even make it to the recycling centres. Instead, up to 12 million metric tonnes of plastic leaks into our oceans each year, and this is extremely harmful to plants and wildlife.

With this in mind, one solution would be is to stop buying single use containers and to replace them with re-usable ones? There are plenty available on the market and, although they can be pricey, after the initial cost of purchasing them, they will soon pay for themselves.

So, if we all pulled together and did a small bit to prevent unnecessary waste, we would collectively make a massive difference to this unnecessary issue.

Let’s face it, we don’t all need to do zero waste perfectly, what we need is for millions of us to do zero waste imperfectly.

We’ve got this……..

Great Spotted Woodpecker – Through the Skylight

The Great Spotted Woodpecker

Mike and I have walked many locations in the UK, and one of our favourite things to do is to spot the beautiful wildlife of all varieties and it is even better if we get to capture the lovely memories on our Canon RP Camera. Over the years, we have seen only a handful of Woodpeckers but as soon as we see them, they fly away before we have had the pleasure to take a photograph. So it was such a delight to have, not one, but a regular visitation from a Great Spotted Woodpecker, and of all places to spot it, it was through the skylight of the cottage that we were staying at in St Just in Cornwall.

Such amazing moments for us….

Handmade is Good…..

I could knit before I could walk!!! Or so it seems that way šŸ™‚ I honestly can’t remember a time in my childhood when I wasn’t knitting or crocheting.Ā Ā 

Hand Knitted Ribbed Beanie

Before I opened my Etsy shop, I was making things for myself and for friends and family. I soon found that I was receiving lovely compliments about my work and people started to ask if I actually made things to sell, and so it began…. I already had an eBay shop that I used mainly to sell unwanted things from around the house that Mike and I had accrued over the years, so I began to make and list my handmade items there firstly.

Then one day, I discovered Etsy.  

Etsy is an American e-commerce company who focus on handmade, vintage items and craft supplies. The handmade items that you find on there are, not only unique and of high quality, but you can rest assured that they have been made with love and that a lot of time and effort has gone into the production process.

I absolutely love creating things for my Etsy shop and sometimes, I actually find it difficult to keep up with demand. Over the years, I have been experimenting and finding out what my customers want so I am very much concentrating on the items that people are asking for nowadays and you can guarantee, I usually have two or three projects on the go at any one time.

crochet Hot Water Bottle Cover
Chunky Knit
Blue Scarf

I also love to give and to receive handmade products as gifts as I know that there has been a lot of love, care and attention to detail that goes in to something that has been handmade and, without a doubt, you also get a much better quality and unique product than the mass produced items that you find in the shops.

Buying handmade items also helps to support local craft industries and keeps the Etsy community a good and interesting place to shop.

So why not give it a go? Next time you have a birthday coming up, why not purchase a beautiful unique gift for your loved one and make them feel loved?

The Seaside…. My Very Favourite Place to Be….

I think the seaside has got to be my very favourite thing in the world. I just adore to be beside it and I have got to admit, I feel totally relaxed and at home when I am there.

While there, the memories take me back to my childhood holidays that I lovingly enjoyed with my family. Those times were where life was oh so simple and ever so magical. The ocean actually has the ability to mesmerise and calm me and I certainly get that feel good feeling.

Rhosneigr Beach is Mike & mine’s very favourite beach. From where we live, it is about a 90 minute drive away and is on the beautiful isle of Anglesey in North Wales. Any opportunity that we get, we go and set up camp there in one of the local campsites. There are two campsites to choose from in the resort and their locations are so good that you can actually leave the car on the site for your whole stay. The beach, shops, bars and restaurants are all within walking distance.

The stunning sandy beach is over a mile long with a few rocky outcrops along the way and along the top of the beach there are lovely sand dunes where you can sit and watch the many water activities including kayaking, windsurfing and boating.

We often go there for the day as we consider the 180 mile round trip well worth it. We pack up the car with the dogs, food and water and head off for our Rhosneigr fix, a good walk and a picnic. It is a great place, and one that I can’t wait to visit again.

I’m so looking forward to my next trip, and I might even get an ice cream! Bring it on šŸ™‚

Lazy Days and Sundays

Yesterday was a busy day, and it was my birthday, and it was the first time in years that it actually fell on a Saturday! And it was my very first (and last I hope) lockdown birthday!! However, all considering, it wasn’t too bad at all, in fact I quite enjoyed it….

I spent a few hours with my Mum (she is in my bubble), we ate lunch, chatted and put the world to rights. My afternoon was spent mainly on the phone to friends and family and recieving numerous parcels from couriers. I was quite spoilt to be honest and Mike, my other half, made me a lovely evening meal and we had a few drinks.

So today, I have decided, is going to be mainly about listing some items in my Etsy shops, walking my dogs and crochet….

A perfect kind of day to be honest….

Enjoy your day everyone šŸ™‚

Hand Made Crochet Daisy Blanket

Isle of Mull – A Little Bit of Heaven

It is a few years ago since Mike and I last visited the Isle of Mull and the way things are going, it will be a few more years before we get to visit again.

Our journey to Oban from our home town in Cheshire, took us about 5 hours 30 minuties, travelling a total of 320 miles. The scenery, thankfully, is very pleasant and picturesque and to me, there is nothing about this type of journey that is unpleasant.

Once we arrived in Oban, we headed straight to the ferry port to catch the boat to Craignure. This journey takes approximately 46 minutes, which again, is a pleasant route to be on.

Once we arrived in Mull, we had a little bit of a drive to get to the very tip of the island to a place called Fionnphort. This indeed, is my little bit of heaven. I cannot describe the feeling of tranquility and calm that this place embraces you with.

Just to the left of Fionnphort is Fidden Farm where we set up our camp for a few days. It is a very raw and natural campsite that is situated right on the beach and has the most stunning of views. This is where we set up camp and enjoyed our first evening eating campfire food, watching the sun set over the nearby island of Iona while enjoying a little drink or two.

Fidden Farm Camp Site

Fionnphort is a small village which is ideal for walking with routes that have the best view points ever. Wildlife is also abundant and easy to observe in this area. 

There is a busy little ferry port here also for trips to the Islands of Iona and Staffa. Iona is a small island in the Inner Hebrides off the Ross of Mull on the western coast of Scotland

After our idyllic stay at Fionnphort, we packed up and drove to the absolute beautiful village of Tobermory which is a little fishing port that was built in the late 18th century. It is now the main town on Mull and is very popular with tourists. The town is adorned with brightly painted buidings and shops along the main street and the harbour is always busy with fishing boats, yachts and the ferry that runs to and from Kilchoan.

A View of the Picturesque Tobermory

Our trip to Mull was most definitely one of the most memorable ever for me and it is a trip that I would like to do again one day in the future. Hopefully it will be sooner rather than later šŸ™‚

Coping with the Lockdown

I won’t lie, Iā€™m actually not liking the whole situation right now and like every other lover of the outdoors and adventures, I am finding this “being trapped indoors” a bit of a struggle.

Being a key worker for a pharmaceutical business, my daily working arrangements haven’t changed at all. I still travel into the office daily, do my day’s work and travel back, and with my once a week supermarket shop for life’s essentials thrown into the routine, my weekdays are no different for me.

It’s the weekends that are getting me down, especially as the sun has been shining recently and the temperatures have been not too shabby either. I can hear the beaches, canals and the countryside crying out to me, inviting me to come out to play, but I am unable to visit any of them. This saddens me greatly.

It isn’t completely doom and gloom though as, on a positive note, my other half has been busy around the house and garden during the week, doing all of those jobs that you never seem to get round to when you are busy doing more important outdoor stuff, so for that, I am ever so grateful and happy.

There is also the fact that Iā€™m missing my family and friends, especially my 84 year old Mum who lives in a retirement apartment complex, and along with the upset of not being able to visit for a coffee and a chat, this has the added fear factor of hoping that everbody who visits the building are actually sticking to the rules of social distancing and sanitising. I have to try not to think about this as it could drive me crazy.

My two doggies are helping to keep me active though as I still get to have my little walk with them in the morning. This is my favourite part of the day at the minute as there is nobody around so I feel at one with my thoughts, and with the weather being good at the moment, this is an added bonus. I just hope that the Government don’t take this pleasure away from me any time soon.

So, in these very challenging times, I am trying to keep my spirits up and remain positive. Mike and I have been planning our next holiday and checking out some lovely new areas of the UK that we can explore and hopefully we will be able to get our little speed boat out on the water too.

Until this day is possible, I will carry on crafting …. I am currently crocheting a pretty Daisy Blanket / Throw which helps to take my mind off the crazy situation we are all living with at the minute. Crafting definately helps me unwind, relax and to actually stay positive.

Stay safe everyone and don’t forget…. stay home šŸ™‚

On the ferry heading to the Isle of Rum
Current Project – Daisy Blanket / Throw

Fitness Watch, Daily Goals and a Circular Walk Around Tarporley

Mike & I have always enjoyed both our daily and weekend walks with our dogs and it has been one way that we have kept ourselves moving and fit but now that we are both in our mid 50’s we feel that staying active is even more important, especially as I was diagnosed with allergy related asthma last year. So this year we purchased our fitness watches and joined Ordnance Survey online so that we could plan our routes and download the maps to our mobile phones.

The route that we took

On Sunday, we completed a circular walk around Tarporley in Cheshire that took us on part of the Sandstone Trail route. We parked in the car park behind The Rising Sun Public House. The route took us through the lovely village of Tarporley itself and accross the many fields in the stunning countryside of Cheshire with lots of kissing gates and stiles, so bear this in mind if you are walking large dogs.

Our dogs cooling down in the stream

We skimmed the edge of Tiverton and passed Tiverton Hall and at one point along the this part of the trail you get a glimpse of Beeston Castle high up on the hill. This stretch of the walk is part of the Sandstone trail where you cross Wharton Lock, and a small stream where the dogs took a little dip, then several more fields, some of them being crops of corn.

When we came out of the fields we found ourselves in the yard at Beeston Cattle Market where we headed back through the village of Beeston and more fields, crossed more stiles, passed through more kissing gates to end up at the bottom end of the shopping street at Tarporley and a well deserved beverage at the pub was had before heading back home.

I aim to close all of the rings daily
  • Distance: 6.85 miles
  • Total Steps: 18,130
  • Calories Burnt: 1,081

So my question is ā€¦ā€¦……… Are these watches worth it?

(I think they are)