Sunday, 18 November 2018


Most people who read my blog know I love birds.  Although my facebook page on my art is called Buchan Birds and Beasts, there are far more birds than beasts get onto the drawing board.  Reasons are I can see birds when I go to the beach.  I can also see birds from the shedudio window.  Little effort required for either beach or shedudio.  The Beasts I have to use others photographs from which to paint.

So lets go to the Prom.

Sunday is a day for dog walkers, so not that many birds are left undisturbed.

At the waters edge are Oystercatchers.


Both birds I have painted many times and never tire of portraying them.

Back home.  Until we are sure the rats are no longer in our garden we have cut back on feeding the birds.  This dish of seed is put down while I am in the Shedudio and then removed.  Pleased to say the birds are still there and our offering remains popular.  One of the Great Tits.

Coal Tits.

Blue Tits.


We have many Goldfinch and their Niger seed is still out on a hanging feeder.  The very tiny seed that drops would not be noticed by a rat.  Nor the peanut feeder as there is little of them that falls to the ground.  Once the boxes with the poison in is no longer being taken we will know we have said farewell,  for a while,  to the rats, and can return to feeding everything.  Which will be good as winter draws in.

Today we had a visit from a Tree Creeper, which eats insects, grubs etc from the trees.

As I walked back up to the house there were masses of Pink Footed Geese returning to roost at Strathbeg Bird Reserve.  Should have done a video as they are quite loud!  Magical.

Meanwhile here is a beast progressing on the drawing board.

Brown Hare.

Saturday, 17 November 2018

Saturday and Success.

Really proud of myself.  I managed to sort out my problems of no sound on anything that I had coming in on Google Chrome.  I first downloaded Firefox.  Fine I had sound.  But when I went to connect with the NHS Firefox couldnt do this.  So - having realised that Chrome, blog, facebook, messenger etc had no sound, I googled no sound on google chrome.  Bang.  Right click on loudspeaker symbol - and it came up with sound muted.  Who had done that?  Not me.  So I unmuted it and I now have sound on everything.  Which means I can hear any videos you all post and I can now, more importantly, have a video link to the NHS and my physiotherapist. He wants to see me more often, but not have me going to the hospital etc.  Whew.  Aren't I clever.

Then it was the Prom.  Lousy weather.  Overcast, windy and cold.  The sort of cold wind that makes your head hurt.  But I got out of the car and walked.  To the railings and then on.

Not many others out walking!

Ah there are the Gull Gang.

Mainly Great Black Backed, and juveniles.  The odd Skurry.

Over to the left of the beach I could see that there were Oystercatchers.


My Brown Hare.  Well.  The times I have told myself "Do not use Indigo unless you are 100% sure that is where it should go."  And then get it wrong.  To 'lift' Indigo is a task and a half.  It can be done but it is labour intensive.  And I will never learn to think ahead.

I will do it but for now we have a terrible left ear.

Comments on the Blog.  Well wherever you live rivers and streams  (or Burns if you live in Scotland)  tend to head towards the sea.  I do not of anywhere that the sea moves inland apart from tidal surges or tsunamis which still do not actually create a river/stream they tend to deluge the whole area.  So the Kessock Burn springs up inland and heads towards the sea.  Ends up in Fraserburgh and is channelled through to the beach.  It makes its own channel but the humans have to put a bridge over it for roads etc.  Hope that answers your query but feel free to question further.

Friday, 16 November 2018

Thinking positive.

Another good weather day!

My head to toe wash, moisturised and dressed.  Only need breath to talk to my lovely carer, but then she does for both of us!  These girls are amazing.  All in their early 20s.  I have learnt that they have regular training on a variety of topics.  One recently was on medication.  But the empathy and respect has to be in the person already.  Just know I am so appreciative.  And I tell them.

To the Prom.  The DP puts me and the chariot into the car.  I have to sit for a while to get the breathing back to normal.  I was taught exercises on my pulmonary physio and they still work.  At the other end I then have to unload the chariot and get to the railings.  I stand there for a bit and again get control of the breathing.  Then I can walk a bit!

Looking to the right.  The Kessock Burn.  Heading for the sea.  Tiger Hill the big sand dune.  Lots of weed - and rubbish in amongst.

Where the Kessock Burn meets the North Sea is where many of the Gull Gang gather.  Gulls can drink sea water and will bathe in it, but they obviously enjoy drinking and bathing in the fresh water of the burn.

To the left.  There are rocks, on top of which is the caravan park.  Down below we have Oystercatchers.  Frequently Blackheaded Gulls prefer this side of the beach.  But today we had Turnstones.  Look closely at the seaweed between the two Oystercatchers.   Well camouflaged.  Two of them.

Here a Black Headed Gull, red legs.  In the winter they lose the black head but retain a black spot behind the eye.

Out at sea a small boat checking on lobster pots.

And some more.  

The man comes on his bike with, now two dogs, who know exactly which direction the stick will be heading for.  He does a twirl and then lets fly.  The black and white dog is the one who fetches the stick and brings it back.

Then I load up the chariot into the back of the car.  And come home.  Down the Shedudio.  The DP has lit the wood burner.  So we are sitting chatting and looking out of the window.  I noticed these two birds.  Flitting about.  And said, "What are those two?"  


Tiny but beautiful and a first for our garden!!!!  They eat insects.  Because of this unseasonal weather there are still lots in our garden.  Little jewels.

Brown Hare.  Watercolour on canvas.  Begun today.

Thinking positive.

Thursday, 15 November 2018

One Man and his Dog.

Stick throwing for the dog, deliberately aimed at the birds on the beach, cleared the lot.

Earlier in the day I had the phone call from the Oxygen team person.  I had to pass the phone over to the DP as I was struggling to talk, being breathless!  Anyway I have to go to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary next Thursday.  I don't mind the hospital its the journey I hate.  40 miles away and a lot on single track roads.  Some dualled.  Hey ho.

I have to have a blood test, taken from a vein in the wrist, yeugh, then they measure oxygen levels and CO 2.  If C0 2 is okay I then get given a whiff of oxygen and the blood test is repeated.  The following week she comes to the house.  Still a bit confused. If the CO 2 is not okay and my body isnt ridding itself of it then its back to the consultant.  I think.  Watch this space.  (Fortunately the DP knows whats going to happen.)

Anyway.  I made it to the Prom.

Before the man and his dog went into clearing the beach of birds mode.

Blackheaded Gulls in winter plumage (no black head) note the red legs.

Young Skurries (Herring Gulls) pale pink legs.  Oystercatchers snoozing. Deep pink legs.  Odd that you would think they would be orange to match the beak and eye.

Redshank, smaller than Oystercatcher.  This has matching orange legs, altho its called a REDshank.  Sheesh.

So a fair few just doing their own thing.  Until man throws stick for dog in their direction.  Huh.

Out at sea the rescue boat.  Which is where all the sea birds ended up, out at sea.

Back home I finally picked up the paint brush again.

Short Eared Owl is now finished.  I shall have this framed and then work out how to raise some funds for the New Arc who rescued it.

Then the sun set.

It is so sudden at this time of year I half expect there to be a bang!


Wednesday, 14 November 2018

Every breath you take, every step you make.....

For Sue in the Cottage at the end of the Lane.  One of my all time favourites and my theme tune at the moment!!

Much later than usual we got to the Prom.  Before that it had been a visit to the Doctors Surgery.

An overload of Oystercatchers!  Lots of inspiration for paintings,

Three juvenile Skurries (Herring Gulls.)  Pale pink legs.

Grown up Skurries and a Great Black Backed Gull.
You might think Skurries are big, but see the difference in size with the GBB!

This is a rare surfing gull!

I was at the surgery as my breathing has worsened. Every step, talking, eating =  breathless.   A struggle to do anything and very, very depressing.

I was checked over,  they agreed.  Oxygen levels are really down.  So with no more ado a telephone call was made and the person who has me on file to deal with will be phoning me, hopefully tomorrow.  So we can get cracking on me being on oxygen.  This will give me a better quality of life.  I might do a cartwheel, although I actually never could do cartwheels....

Every breath I take, every step I make.....Yay.