Sunday, February 22, 2009

"My Travels from Grasmere and Ambleside to Derwentwater" 9-2-09

River Rothay in Grasmere, a wonderful little town in the Lake District.

I'll tell you from the start, this post has NO drawing in it! I feel a bit guilty but what can I say? I loved my travels between the places I stayed while exploring the Lake District and I wanted to share some of the photos with you. I must declare here and now, I fell in love with England when I visited the Lake District! It has swept this artist's heart away and I won't be truly happy until I return! Happily that'll be soon, as I plan to return to England this Summer for more exploring and painting. I also hope to teach some outdoor nature sketching classes while there.
I thought this was a Merganser but here they call it a Goosander, it was working it's way up the river fishing...turning around in circles sometimes then diving. What a beautiful bird!
Wonderful Celtic crosses in a churchyard right in town. I love the different colors from the moss and lichens growing on them.
Another wonderful thing I discovered in England was flapjacks. When I went with my friend Gary to buy goodies for our journey he said "how about some flapjacks?" I looked at him like he was rediculous! Who carries flapjacks around with them?? haha....To the American a flapjack is a large flat pancake you eat with butter and syrup for breakfast, you don't take it in the car to nibble on. (Though I have been known to nibble on cold ones for a snack from the fridge!) He kept pointing to stuff in the bakery case and I kept looking for the pancakes! Well, to the English a flapjack is a wonderful healthy snack made from oats and whatever you want to put in it like raisins etc. It's like a chewy granola bar. So in the picture, here I am enjoying my first flapjack! Just check out those hills behind me; the reddish color is from the Bracken turning color in the fall.
Me taking some shots before we moved on, it was hard to leave this spot it was so beautiful.
A farm in the valley where we stopped.
This is in Ambleside, the "Bridge House" set right over the river or "Stock Beck" (Norwegian name for river is Beck); this was to escape the land tax at the time. It was used as an apple store and at one time had a family with six children living in it!

That's a Jackdaw on top of it; Jackdaw's are a common bird much like our House Sparrow or Starlings are...both came from England originally by the way. So as I was excited to see the Jackdaw about everywhere, no one payed any attention to them. It's something to remember, things in your own backyard can be really fascinating to others. So take a closer look at what you've got and appreciate it.
Hmm...that could have meaning on several levels ;-)


betty2dogs said...

That is just a beautiful place. Thank you for sharing your photos!

Kathie said...

I love your photos so much Mary. Someday I'm gonna go over there an photograph ancient stonework, castles, and forests until my camera gives out! You've got wonderful reference material- happy painting!

Mary McAndrew said...

Thanks Betty and Kathie,
I'm glad you enjoyed the photos..the next post is ready to go and has a few small sketches and one small painting I finished once I was home. They are from Derwent Water..I have to say my favorite place on the trip.
I hope someday I'll be leading people around these wonderful places so they can absorb the beauty too!

Spinneretta said...

Oh so cool! Ambleside is where Charlotte Mason trained teachers- she liked to use the Boy Scout Handbook for them AND she was a HUGE proponent of Nature Study. She has a huge influence in the homeschool community! Just down the road is where Beatrix Potter lived... what a wonderful trip :) I miss flapjacks- used to be one of my favourite school desserts :)

Mary McAndrew said...

Hi Spineretta! Nice to hear from you again. You've given me someone new to learn about, please tell me more about Charlotte Mason..sounds like someone I'd love to learn about.
Did you live in England? are you from England and I missed that somehow?
How are your homeschool days going with your kids?
Thanks for the comments, more to come!

Spinneretta said...

Yes I'm from England- I live in the US with my American husband :)
Homeschooling life is going well- we've been doing nature study as the weather warms :D
Now Charlotte Mason was a late 19th early 20th century educator. She started the Parent-teachers association and really reformed much of the British education system in the early 1900s. She was big on short lessons, handicrafts, nature walks (in all weather), reading from books NOT dumbed down... I have always thought that the Lake District must have been quite a place to have both her and Beatrix Potter!! Any google search can turn up a wealth of information on her and should take you to a website where you can read her books and articles :). She was very art friendly too ;)

Mary McAndrew said...

I will definitely look her up, my dad taught 6th grade and always believed in taking the kids outside as much as possible. I think that's where I get it from.
I'll tell you I can't wait to return to England, I've fallen in love with it.

James F. Smith said...

Lots of great photo's Mary!!