Wednesday, 1 July 2015
Wednesday, 3 December 2014
This is the eighth Christmas I am experiencing as a Dad. But the first Christmas that (incidentally), Louis my eldest doesn't believe in Santa :(
Well then, that doesn't mean that it won't be as amazing as the previous seven. In fact, now that he knows, he has been really enthusiastic to make it extra special for his brother. He probably doesn't realise that he has made myself and mum feel very old. I mean, we're 31 and 32 respectively and I feel like a spring chicken, (as opposed to a stuffed Christmas turkey :) ).
This year has been a real roller coaster of a ride and we have relished in it all. The news is always full of negativity, be headings, paedophile's, disease and domestic abuse but to name a few. As parents, we do try to shield our kids from all of this negative aura about the world and get out, see stuff, educate, have fun and answer any questions as truthfully as you can without being too gross and scaring them with it. How do you answer some of life's questions to an inquisitive 7 year old? Let me tell you, it's a hard job. Then after answering as truthfully as possible, trying to get your 7 year old not to tell his four year old brother and his friends some of these truths.
In the last 7 years what I have learned about parenting more than everything is to show an active physical interest in everything your child is into and take a look at how you were treated by your parents (good or bad) and answer any question about life as truthfully as possible.
I truly believe that you will have a friend for life, not just a son or daughter but the best friend you can ever have by how you show in those very first years, your love, dedication, patience, willingness and truthfulness.
You will only get one chance..
Tuesday, 17 December 2013
At the moment, the trees are sparse, all shed their leaves and there are a lot of rotten branches on the ground. These will collectively create nice little habitats for the mosses, lichens, fungi and bug life in the coming months.
The bird life is quite quiet at the moment however I think I can hear a Jay but cannot see it at the moment. There are also a few magpies and blackbirds flying about and moorhens chatting on the river. I can also see a lone Swan gliding back and forth along the river. I know that there are at least two Heron's in this system having sighted them in the past but as yet I haven't located a nest. I'm guessing that they would nest and look after their young in a nice secluded area near to the river away from the beaten track but I'm an amateur with no qualifications, just a life's knowledge of searching the outdoors and watching documentaries.
Recently, quite late in the summer, I also spotted a lone Cormorant along the river, being alone, I guessed that it could be a male, however, again, I'm no expert.
To my right there is a family of mallards swimming around in an almost conga like fashion and down to the left of me on the river bank is something that makes me really disappointed indeed and ashamed of what we have become;
an ignorant dredge of polluting imbeciles...
There is enough plastic down there to make a cul-de-sac's worth of wheelie bins!!
After looking at the mess I decided to move to another regular viewing spot of mine. It is parallel with the first spot and the view is the reverse of it. It is a nice place to have a sunbathe in the summer with it's nice setting and viewpoint and you are out in the open here so there is not much chance of many animals coming up close unless you are really still and quiet. The only real sightings from here were the family of Mallards in the distance from before and a couple of other birds here and there.
(Human pollution and electric companies don't hinder your adventures in the Lakes Dad!)
As I approached the footbridge I noticed some discarded cable next to the footpath in two places, (which I didn't find very amusing) so I promptly chucked it over the caged in area to make sure that the council would remove the scrap and not leave it lying around for a fox or even a child to impale themselves on the stuff. I also made a mental note to go back and check the state of the areas in the future.
And there it was, a Jay. It was really close to the rock on a tree seemingly looking out for anything encroaching on it's preverbial turf. It was close enough to get a good picture of it with a proper camera, however numpty here only had his phone camera and a set of bins. So I just settled down to watch the Jay through the binoculars without getting a picture :(
The Jay seemed to be concentrating on something from it's perch from the tree and then, all of a sudden I saw a Magpie about 150 metres ahead darting about some higher trees. The Jay, with it's Spitfire like wings darted off and up to screech at the Magpie to tell him to remove his feathery butt away from his territory which in turn developed into a slanging match between the two birds.
This was the best wild sight of the day for me. If you have never seen a Jay, I think you should. They are the most colourful member of the crow family and the size of a small crow but a light brown colour with these colourful feathers..
From there I walked back towards the start of the trail and onto the canal towards Water Street. Along the canal there are good parts and unfortunately the shopping trolleys within the canal put a downer on the end of the journey which included sighting canada geese, bulrushes, robins and woodpidgeon.
Here is a summary and map of distance/trail covered using the Map My Walk app on my phone.
Louis and I have already visited a multitude of local places with our bat detector over the last few years and found that there is many different sub-species of bat roosting every year. I am far off being a bat expert but a little bit of searching these places with the help of the bat detector and the internet, we have found at least three different sub-species in Radcliffe alone. This is simple science and knowledge to attain and for me at least, the results are really rewarding.
Saturday, 7 December 2013
I have friends who support Bury FC and are proud of their heritage and like the fact that the "shakers" have won the FA cup twice in 1900 and 1903, there is no Bury fan alive who can remember these achievements as it happened so long ago but are proud of them, along with every other football fan in the world. This is FOOTBALL. This is why we love our national game.
Yes there always will be very high expectations at MUFC and standards and legacies to adhere to but we are halfway into one of the most fragile seasons in the clubs history.
Thursday, 5 December 2013
Tuesday, 3 December 2013
As we arrived at the centre, we were warmly greeted and I felt like we were to be in for some good customer service, ( which is a rarity in most places.) We were then asked to fill out the forms/ disclaimers, and proceeded outside to receive a tutorial from one of the Go Ape staff and he fit our harnesses. *feeling nervous but excited*
The obstacles were all different and some harder than others. My favourites were the two large zip slides crossing the valley and the best of them all was the large Tarzan swing after choosing the extreme route over the easy one..