A wedding in Scotland


Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Well hello there.
How are you all? I hope you have all had a great Easter weekend and not eaten too much chocolate (like I have!). We have just spent a lovely few days in Scotland celebrating with family at the wedding of my cousin Jo.

We travelled east to the Kingdom of Fife as the ceremony was taking place at an 18th century Georgian mansion. Jo met her husband to be in Sydney, Australia where they both live and work. They are originally from the UK, she is from London, he is from Glasgow. Jo's parents are Scottish (her Dad is my Mum's brother). So it was perfect that the wedding be held in Scotland and it was amazing that so many friends came from Australia to join the celebrations. 

The ceremony was touching and there was a lot of love in the room. Many tears were shed. After photographs were taken, we spent time mingling in the garden as the sun was shining and the champagne was flowing. For the wedding feast, the couple had a piper lead them to their table and traditional Scottish fayre was served. Tealights flickered on each table and we all received an Easter egg as a wedding favour. Harry was suitably impressed with this! I don't think I've ever seen my cousin so happy and she was utterly beautiful. It's wonderful to see how she has grown up and found her perfect mate. 

Three days later we were back in Glasgow to celebrate with the groom's family for a traditional Indian wedding reception. I've never been to one of these before and didn't really know what to expect, but it was absolutely fantastic. It's one heck of a party! Our hosts made us unbelievably welcome and once again, there was a lot of love in the room for the newly wedded couple.

We've returned home tired but happy. It was fantastic to see my family again as we are all so far away from one another. Hopefully we'll be reunited soon. x

Homeward Bound


Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Hello there!
Hope you are all well and enjoying some Spring sunshine. So far it's been a pretty lovely school holiday for us, quiet and stress free. Today we are heading homeward. Although I've lived in Leeds for 18 years (I married a Yorkshireman), Scotland means home.

My cousin is having her wedding near Edinburgh tomorrow and I'm so looking forward to catching up with my family as we are spread out all over the world. We don't get together often so it will be so nice to see how everyone is doing as well as enjoying a big old ceilidh dance! Kilts will be flying.

I'm nearly all packed and ready to go. My Saltwater sandals are optimistic for Scotland in April, but hey, you never know. I'm also taking my thick cardigan which is probably more likely to be worn!

See you all soon and have a very happy Easter. x

Leap into Spring #1


Monday, 14 April 2014

Last year for my fortieth birthday, my parents very kindly bought me a new DSLR camera - the Nikon D3200. I previously owned a second hand Nikon D70 which started misbehaving a bit too often. I sold it for parts on Ebay and I also sold the basic kits lens, choosing to keep my handy Nikon 50mm lens. I didn't realise however, that the particular lens I had wouldn't autofocus with my new camera, meaning I had to manually focus every single shot I did. At first this wasn't too much of a problem, but over recent months I've found I've really struggled with my eyesight and shots have been blurry and for every shot that was clear there would be about 25 out of focus ones! I stopped enjoying getting my camera out for this reason and knew that I needed to invest in a lens that would do the focus work for me. I did a little bit of research and bought a new autofocus lens, the Nikon AF-S 35mm f1.8. And it's fantastic - I'm completely in love with taking pictures again.

One of the ways I'm embracing this is by joining in with a favourite blogger of mine, Rebecca at Bumbles and Light and her six week photography project, Leap Into Spring. It's all about celebrating the beauty of the season and is open to all regardless of experience or equipment. Rebecca's blog is full of wonderful hints and tips too, which I've found hugely helpful, including several fantastic e-books.

Each week there is a prompt to inspire you. This first one was Sunshine/Light. I chose to use this as a way of learning more about aperture as it's something I'm not particularly confident with. But I'm pretty happy with the results I had photographing these beautiful supermarket purple tulips. The slight blurriness to the background adds some texture and makes me think of a watercolour painting. And early this morning, as the first rays hit the garden, I padded out barefoot and in my pyjamas to try and capture the light coming through the cherry tree. I switched to manual to take this long shot peering through a large bamboo. I quite like it, but I think this probably needed a different lens to pick up more detail. Switching back to practicing with aperture, I took the top image of the first blossom to open on the tree. I like how it highlights the golden colours of the leaves. Shooting in this way makes me appreciate their beauty all the more.

It's a fantastic learning experience though and I'm looking forward to this week's prompt, Easter/Eggs. Do join in if you are looking for a bit of a Spring project. x

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