Atop: WordPress photo challenge.

So, on this wild and extremely windy Saturday afternoon, the Daisy dog and I stood atop the cliff gardens and watched the violent waves bash the shoreline below. We clambered up an exposed and rather slippery path to take in the view and make our way back to the car… and a sleeping husband. He didn’t want to brave the weather, in his wheelchair… having watched a wooden bench be tossed on to its front – just as the Daisy dog and I got out of the car.

My picture shows the castle headland, with the harbour and busy south bay of Scarborough, in north Yorkshire.

This is my offering for this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge, which asks us to give our interpretation of Atop.

As usual, if you want to check out the other entries click on the link and enjoy!

Thanks for dropping by.

Dorne x


Make a wish: my take on the WordPress photo challenge.



Choose a star, a cloud, a tree, a sunset, a bird, a butterfly… in fact just about anything that appeals to you and grabs you by the heart.

Make a good, true wish and write it down on a piece of paper.

Don’t make anyone your sex slave or poison anyone… save that for your story – writing!

Burn a candle as you write your wish. ( Please be candle safe and don’t set your home on fire.)

Fold the paper up and keep it with you at all times. ( Ideally on your person – but not there!)

Think about it often and just as you’re drifting off to sleep.

But, don’t break the magic and tell anyone about your wish. ( They’ll probably think you’re mad anyway!)

Wait for the magic to happen!

If it doesn’t happen…

  • It wasn’t meant to be
  • Things like that are actually illegal
  • No – they don’t belong to you
  • You need to be more specific
  • Try again… and untie them… immediately!

This is my take on the theme of Wish – this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge

Click on the link to check out the other entries. Allow yourself plenty of time to read and enjoy.

Thanks for dropping by.

Dorne x



WordPress Photo Challenge: The Road Taken.


So, when I’m out with the daisy dog I’m thinking and making my plans. It’s my time to get a hold of myself and methodically wade through life’s mess and confusion.

Most mornings I climb the hill opposite our cottage. We’re not talking a mountain here. The climb is gradual in places and more challenging in other parts. I believe the act of pushing up the hill pushes the fresh air through my stuffy, bunged up head and may be beneficial in helping to calm down my daily headache/migraine. My aching leg muscles ache for a healthy reason!

At the top of our climb, the hound and I are afforded, if the day is clear, wide views of our part of the valley. Looking southwards you can see the Yorkshire Wolds ( much-loved and painted by the artist David Hockney).


To the far south – east are the cliffs, just below Scarborough bay.

With vistas like this I am pulled headlong into their magnificence. The skylarks warble high above me and clouds chase each other across the huge skies. My thoughts silenced: I am at once with nature. The Daisy dog watches for anything that moves in the fields.

Then we start the descent down to the valley. My thoughts and goals become more positive and achievable. I could walk forever on this: the road taken.

This is my entry to this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge

Click on the link to see the other takes on this subject.

Thanks for dropping by.

Dorne x

WordPress Photo Challenge: A Good Match.


In an attempt to feel a bit better and lose some weight I’ve been gluten-free since the beginning of this year. This week sees my hubby’s seventieth birthday and so today we gathered the kids and their kids together and headed off to our local fish restaurant – for an early birthday bash.

Some would argue that this is hardly diet food… but, what the heck. I’ll be walking the Daisy dog that bit faster and further – to walk it off. ( She can’t wait for that!)

This week the WordPress photo challenge asks us to think about a good match

I can very happily tell you that this delicious combination of perfectly, crispy gluten-free batter, home-made chips and proper mushy peas were a very good match indeed.

Click on the above link to check out the other entries to this challenge.

As for me? I need to get walking!

Thanks for dropping by.
Dorne x

Against the Odds: WordPress Photo Challenge. Roe deer.


So – I’m out with the Daisy dog (a retired racing greyhound) in what I have christened the magical valley. Not a very original name and I really must come up with something more imaginative. I can guarantee that I will spot something rather special when I amble down to it… through the glorious, thick mud at the moment.

Just a few of the things on my spotted whilst walking in the magical valley  are:

  • Goshawk
  • Red Kite
  • Barn owl
  • Kestrel
  • Hare… one – the size of a small dog
  • Rabbit
  • Rat
  • Pheasant
  • Deer
  • Buzzard

And a cast of thousands.

Back to the subject in question… Against the Odds, which is this week’s topic for the WordPress photo challenge

As the Daisy dog and I stand in the valley I spot two female roe deer in the trees, just above us. I scramble for my phone, with said dog straining on her lead to sniff at yet another blade of grass. I have to quickly delete some images as I’ve rather cleverly filled up the memory. ( What really?  Now of all times?) I wholeheartedly expect the deer, who are well aware of our presence, to move on at any moment. They don’t and I manage to get some shots… of their bottoms (white)

Does my white bum look big in this?
Does my white bum look big in this?

and their heads… seemingly growing out of the trees.

An unusual tree.
An unusual tree.

I curse the fact that I haven’t got my proper camera with me ( better zoom), but hey … I’ve managed to grab some shots of them.

On cue, they bound off over the hill and the Daisy dog and I amble back home. Inside I’m skipping and doing cartwheels!

I’d say the chances of me getting any shots of those two beautiful animals was Against the Odds!

If you want to check out the other entries for this challenge, just click on the link above.

Thanks for dropping by.

Dorne x


Solitude: WordPress challenge.


The folk at WordPress are asking us to give them our definition of solitude, for this week’s challenge

Here’s my take on it.



I value time spent alone, with my own thoughts. I guess I’m lucky in that I can find my solitude in a room full of people, or a busy environment, if I choose to. I just retreat into myself. Quite literally in a world of my own.

But, to get myself a really big dose of solitude – nature is my addiction.




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big skies 33Favourite lane

Whether I have an hour to roam around, or a snatched five minutes, nature works her magic every time with me.

Solitude to me is that sense of truly being connected to your body, soul and mind. The three can so often be off in different directions. To fuse them together brings with it a sense of solitude and peace. A heightened sense of just being… a pretty cool fix, I think.

We enter this world by ourselves. We live alone with our thoughts and we depart this world by ourselves.

Solitude is a gift.

I’m looking forward to seeing what other folk come up with… click on the above link to see for yourself.

Thanks for dropping by.

Dorne x



A fistful of sausages: training the Daisy dog.



For a few sausages more I’m hoping my greyhound will be good, not bad and certainly not get us into an ugly situation.

I’m out with the Daisy dog on a bright, late January afternoon. The birds are singing hopeful songs and a gentle, relaxing walk lies ahead of us.

We turn the corner and are immediately thrown into a standoff, not dissimilar to a scene from a spaghetti western – hence the title.


Photo credit:
Photo credit:

A beautiful, long-haired, border collie who goes by the name of Flossie leads her pack of two humans. They always trail several yards behind her. The music builds to a climax  in my aching head as I clock Daisy’s body language. She is eyeballing the Flossie and all her muscles have been tensed. Flossie stares the Daisy dog down and keeps coming at us.

There’s no time to retrieve the fistful of sausages in my glove ( yummy!) and I take evasive action by turning my pooch away from her perceived threat to face a wall, whilst calmly, but firmly telling her no… to defuse the situation. But, Daisy’s not having any of this and she lunges at the Flossie. I manage to pull her back in time and tell her no! She gives up and the standoff is over. Phew! The Flossie continues on her walk.

The rest of Flossie’s pack ambles up and a joint and judgemental ooh! is muttered by them and so the finger of blame wafts in my direction.

To say that I’m bloody furious is an understatement.

Standoffs with this Flossie are becoming a regular occurrence.  Usually, I get to deploy my weapon… sliced sausages. A request for the Daisy dog to watch me distracts her as she loves sausages. Don’t all dogs?  The Flossie passes us by and her pack of two loyal followers rush silently past us. Which is odd, to say the least. Most dog walkers like to pass comment on our various canine encounters. Or at least say ” Hello.”

In my quest to train our pooch, I go everywhere with my fists and pockets full of sausages, or bits of beef, pork and when I’m desperate liver. All cooked of course. I smell really yummy and dogs for miles around are thrilled to see me. They all want to stop and say hello. Which is fine… the Daisy dog gets to socialize with other dogs and I get to chat for England.


All except Flossie that is. Flossie doesn’t stop to chat, her pack never stop, or chat and the Irish Daisy dog thinks it’s highly amusing to shout “Feck off!” at her.

It is not.

This is not acceptable for a lady/female greyhound and so the training continues.

At this stage my husband and I ( one has been watching The Crown on Netflix and is feeling rather regal) can’t decide whether it’s the pack leader thing that is the problem, or the rubber ring that Flossie has rammed in her mouth, at all times. The Daisy dog has lots of toys and things to chew… other than chair legs, mobile phones, pairs of glasses and false teeth, but no rubber ring.

Yet another day and Daisy and I round the corner to be confronted by the Flossie. This time I quickly cross the road, with a very verbal and reluctant Daisy dog in tow. Flossie continues and her single pack member struggles to keep up with her.

I cross back over and explain to Flossie’s guy that it would be very helpful for them to have her on the lead, when we meet. He admits that he can’t walk her on the lead. She “pulls my shoulder out of its socket” he tells me.

We talk on, the Flossie keeps going… somewhere around the corner and walking along the side of the very busy, main road through our village. ( The thought of this scares me to death…  seemingly not him.)

He accuses me  of having a vicious dog. I point out that in all of our standoffs I’m the one that has to deal with both dogs. Never have they made any attempt to call the Flossie to heel. ( There’s no whistling of the pooch going on in this version of The Good , The Bad and The Ugly.) Nor do they put her on a lead; as other dog owners tend to do, when they see an approaching dog being walked on the lead. It evens things up a bit – in the canine world!  The Flossie is presumably still on the roam. Points made and taken, we go our separate ways.


Several minutes later and the pooch and I are further down the road, and making my way round to the river when we meet…

Flossie leads again, he follows on. His anger is almost tangible.

This time the sausages are deployed, but we’re trapped in between another damn wall and them . He struts past. However, Flossie has stopped to sniff the grass. He shouts her five times, each time more frantically and angrily. Finally, she decides to join him. The Daisy dog is more of a lady this time and doesn’t swear, or attempt a lunge for the collie. She gets an extra-large piece of sausage and oodles of praise.

Bloody marvellous, I think… and head to the river for some chill out time.


The Daisy dog’s rubber ring arrives today.

Watch this space as I train our still adjusting to life as a family pet and so occasionally ever so slightly naughty, but absolutely adorable greyhound.

Do you have a free spirit dog? Or are you training your pooch? Feel free to share your experiences and words of wisdom/techniques .

Thanks for dropping by.

Dorne x








The Daisy dog hard at it.
The Daisy dog hard at it.





WordPress photo challenge: repurpose.



The WordPress Photo Challenge this week asks us to think about repurpose.

So, the stars of my post are these two lamps. wp_20170128_18_48_07_pro

They began life as two rather plain, dusty pink bedside lamps. They did their job, but with no frills or bows.

Sadly, they were so boring I have no before pictures to show you.

Using wrapping paper and photocopies of some of my artwork I set about covering the shades (decoupage). Finally, I sealed them with a specialist glue, which also acts as a hard-wearing varnish. I save up pieces of ribbon and three pieces became bows for one of the shades. There was a hairline crack to the base of the other lamp and this section was decorated to match the shade. They don’t have to be perfect… a bit like me!


These two lamps have now got new personalities and my inner child got to play  for a few hours!

I look forward to seeing all the other posts using this prompt.( Click on the above link.)

Thanks for dropping by.

Dorne. x