Yarn bombing

I had never heard of yarn bombing before today. We were in Oban today, and on our way to the Oban Chocolate Shop and cafe when Farmer spotted this. (highly recommend going there as the coffee is delicious, and we spied lots of people enjoying waffles…)

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It took a while but eventually someone explained that this was yarn bombing. And the reason behind this was to raise awareness of the plight facing the play park outside the leisure centre. It had been condemned/closed at short notice. So the children had nowhere to play. Funds are being raised to build a new park.

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So a pathway of yarn bombed lampposts leads to the leisure centre.

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Playpark_Oban-Atlantis

We were racing to get the ferry so I didn’t have a chance to photograph any more. The car was full of things we needed to get for the cottages – spare kettles and toasters (they don’t seem to last that long), lamp shades, wall lights for Shian bedroom, tiles for the new kitchens – and dog food!

A strong Aurora Borealis

What a beautiful night. People all over the country have been enjoying the Aurora Borealis.

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Strong solar activity has been forecast before this winter, but this time the Aurora Borealis really didn’t disappoint. Visible with the naked eye, with wonderful reds and oranges as well as the greens reaching up into the skies.

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Calgary Beach in winter

Simply fantastic. Calgary Beach. Just myself, the dog and some wildlife. And the sun!

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Things are marching on in Duill and Shian. The lead work was being done on Duill sunroom roof. The new kitchen window is in with its straight out to sea view. The plasterboard is all done and the plasterer arrives tomorrow. The decorator arrives this afternoon. He is an old friend of ours and stays with us while he has a working holiday.

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Wood chip arrived for the wood chip boiler.

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And a regular winter visitor was arriving for West Cottage so Farmer and I got that ready. It was lovely and sunny down there, and the cottage looked very inviting. I always wish I was staying down there myself. Every winter we plan to stay a weekend and we never do. Still we can walk on Calgary Beach in winter and get our relaxation that way, as I did this afternoon.

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The hens have enjoyed the last rays of the sun as well.

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How many Easter lambs?

The scanner came today. He scanned just under 500 ewes in just over 2 hours.

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Now we know who needs extra care and attention before lambing starts just before Easter. It is not far away now. These ewes are expecting twins so they will get an extra bite to help support them during the latter half of their pregnancies.

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A working Mull shed

We sometimes go down to Croig to buy fresh crab from the fishermen who work from this beautiful jetty and shed. Once a week their catch is collected from keep pots and brought in for ‘the landing’. It is then taken off to the mainland and may well end up in Spain or France.

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Hard work even in good weather, we often see the Croig boat off the shoreline at Treshnish, and on very quiet still summer days you can hear them working lifting their creels.

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Croig is a wonderful place to explore with beautiful views and hidden little beaches. You can walk from here round to Langamull which is another great beach.

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There is not much parking space there in summer, but in the winter it is easy to leave the car by the No Cars gate at the jetty and walk along the track to several beaches at the end.

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It was lovely to see the flag iris shoots begin to appear through the waves of kelp that have been washed ashore.

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Another Aurora Borealis forecast

Farmer woke me at 2 in the morning this morning because he could see a green glow in the sky, and lots of stars. It was well worth getting up to check, as this time the camera caught something.

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I spent 2 hours outside. It was quite windy and I have a damaged lens so most of my photographs are a little soft, but the colours the camera caught this time were stronger than the ones we ‘saw’ within the Arctic Circle last weekend, so I am not complaining. We are so lucky here that there is very little light pollution. There was enough light from the moon to walk around the field without a torch, and the stars were so bright.

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I crawled back into bed at 5am. (feeling a little tired now). Farmer is off out gathering as we are hoping to scan our sheep to see how many are in lamb, not in lamb and having twins.

Another aurora alert

There have been a few frustrating aurora alerts for the Northern Lights recently. It does get my hopes up, only to be let down again, when the forecast is wrong. They raise expectations. The last few days have seen intense solar activity and we have had cloud cover so have not been able to see anything. Tonight the cloud cover isn’t 100% so I will be looking out frequently to see what I can see. (Nothing as yet)

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Daughter and I abandoned Farmer last weekend and headed as far north as we could go in a long weekend, which seems like a very long way. We got as far as Tromso in Norway.

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Unfortunately the solar activity was not very strong and the clouds remained stubbornly over head when darkness fell, so we only glimpsed some greens when there was a break in the clouds..

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It was still a magical weekend, and made me realise how very lucky we are to see what we can see here from our own garden, without having to drive round for hours in mini-buses searching, as they do in Norway!

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I’m off outside to look again….just in case the aurora alert rings true tonight…

Winter has arrived

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A winter scene at the Mishnish Lochs this afternoon on my way back from Tobermory. Luckily for us, this is not the norm! Last night Farmer had gone to collect Daughter from a Mull Youth Theatre workshop at An Tobar, and on the way home they had to abandon the car near the distillery reservoir because of the snow. Today we got a lift in to town to retrieve it!

Another calf born this morning.

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A winter scene at the Mishnish Lochs this afternoon on my way back from Tobermory. Luckily for us, this is not the norm!

http://www.treshnish.co.uk/1403/

Northern Lights on Mull in pyjamas

Farmer woke me at 5am to say he thought there was a green glow in the north sky. Sure enough, there was a faint glow of the Northern Lights, incredibly beautiful stars, but there was also a lot of cloud.

The longer you gaze at the stars the more you see, and that was certainly the case as I stood outside in my pyjamas! The glow from the aurora borealis wasn’t very strong, barely discernible with the naked eye, but just the experience of standing outside, in the clear night air (fresh to say the least) was pretty magical.

These are the photographs I took. They show, during the course of an hour, the changing colours in the night sky.

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