Wednesday, 25 January 2017

The Magic of Frost

Hello Lovelies, yesterday morning Eldest and I went for a walk, before I had to go to work. 

How I love to get out in that wonderful icing sugar world when Jack Frost has paid a visit.
Every dead seed head, shrivelled leaf, bit of sheep wool, broken cobweb and even straggly bit of long grass look special with added ice crystals.
It was so pleasant to walk and chat with my boy. There was quiet a bit of warmth in the sun and the frost was mostly gone by mid morning.
As we returned home I smiled at the primulas I planted in a pot by our front door.
Frost and Flowers...perfect :0)
Jacquie x

Sunday, 22 January 2017

Watermead in Winter

Hello Lovelies,
thank you so much for the kind comments on my previous post.
This past week it did seem like I had jinxed myself by saying how much I liked winter in that post. With the day after day  greyness and payday seeming a long way off I began to start humming THIS tune and rather wishing January away somewhat.

There have been gloomy, muddy welly walks that were rather uninspiring. But then today we woke up to this ...a sunrise. How lovely.

I mustered all interested parties ( hubby and eldest) and we headed off somewhere new to us. Watermead Country Park.

By the time we arrived the cloud had gathered somewhat, but there were still beautiful reflections in the partly frozen lake. Eldest had come in a light jacket and after me made him add another layer ( hubbies waterproof) we set off at a brisk pace to ward off the cold.

We surprised a huge Heron, who took flight and glided gracefully over the misty lake.

I do love visiting somewhere new, oooh an interesting gate. Lets see what's on the other side.

A bird hide.

We went inside as there was nobody around :0)

It was a lovely view across the wetlands, though there did not seem to be much bird life today. Just a few Mallards.

Further along we found picnic areas and wooden sculptures.

and an even larger lake

With a strange shaped mound.

And some dinosaur bones

Of course these were just rather imaginative play structures.

This one representing a locally discovered species

At 16 eldest was not interested in climbing this frame, but he did get excited by the signs for a canoeing  trail we saw here.

Something to look forward to when the weather warms up.

Here we were walking beside the Grand Union Canal.

Were there was plenty of life on the narrow boats.

More wintry reflections.

We didn't have much idea where we were at this point but it didn't matter

Hello Mr Robin.

Eventually the path wound around so we were heading back in the direction of our start point. I loved the fresh green catkins and the red branches of the dogwood.

You are never far from water as the whole area used to be  a gravel quarry. It was converted into a park in the 1980's.
There were plenty of families out stretching their legs and exercising their dogs.

More catkins...such a bright red colour. I'm not sure I've ever seen any like this before. I think it could be Alder, but I'm not sure.

The park is just a few miles from the centre of Leicester, and there is a background hum of traffic, along with glimpses of homes and industry.

Happily it's not intrusive and  you can easily forget it's there when you came across lovely sights, like this beautiful wooden bridge.

we used it to cross the river.

And it led us back to the big lake.

The signs had said the lake is called "King Lear's Lake" so we guessed this was a scene from Shakespeare's  play of the same name.

I've since done a bit of internet research ( because I do like to understand the reason for such things) and  THIS site had the best explanation.

King Lear’s Lake has been named after the legend of King Lear, who ruled Britain in the 8th century. On his death he was buried in a chamber under the River Soar - possibly close to this lake! The statues, built on a platform in the lake, show the final scene from Shakespeare’s play of King Lear.

Hubby noticed the new shoots of the irises at the waters edge.

As the sun was shining again we took the opportunity for a rest on this bench.

We are still eating Christmas cake kindly given to us by sister in law. It's soooo good. I'll be sad when it's all gone.

I loved the way the sunlight was shimmering on the water as we sat looking back towards the "floating" statues.

Some hopeful ducks appeared but sadly I had forgotten birdseed today. I think I should leave some in my rucksack all the time in winter.

Oooh, some stepping stones.

Got to be done :0)

I'm often lagging behind taking pictures.

but the menfolk seen happy to wait.

Eldest amusing himself breaking the thin ice.

After a couple of hours and about 4 miles we were back at the car park.

It was time to go home and make the Sunday roast.

I really enjoyed this watery world, with it's reflected sunlight and birdlife.

Happily it's not too far from home and I'm hoping we can come back to see the difference the changing seasons makes.

I hope you will "join us"
Jacquie x