Tag Archives: Countryside

Gwlad, Gwlad!

24 Feb

My day off started badly today when we realised that someone had stolen all the hub-caps off our car AGAIN. I’ve been trying to tell myself all day that it doesn’t really matter and it’s only £30 or so, but I just can’t help being really frustrated. This is the second time we’ve had all our hubcaps taken, and we’ve also had our aerial taken – from a church carpark! Why can’t people have respect for other people’s property.  RAAAGH.

So, where should you go when you’re having a bad day?

We drove up into the Snowdonia National Park for a rather misty walk in the hills above Happy Valley.

We climbed up into the hills to Llyn Barfog (or the Bearded Lake). This area is the setting for a local legend about King Arthur. The story goes that a terrible monster lived in the lake and continually raided local villages. When King Arthur heard about this he went to the lake, threw a huge chain around the monster and killed it.

Apparently at the right time of year the lake is completely covered by water lilies, but even in February it was still a beautiful place to have our dinner.
Homemade lemon drizzle cake and chocolate cookies with a view like this? Lunch can’t get any better!

Then we walked down to the beach to chase some waves.

I never want to take the beauty of Wales for granted! We are very lucky to live here.


How would you plan your perfect holiday?

22 Feb

Last Thursday, as I’ve already mentioned we drove over to Pontrhydygroes for my day off. After we’d seen the Golden Eagle we walked steeply up from the village into the mountains.

I love being up in the mountains where you can see for miles over the hills without a house or person in sight. It was beautiful.

While we walked Josh and I talked lots about the future.

It seems so strange. In the space of a week we’ve gone from having no idea what we would be doing with the rest of our lives, to being able to pin-point what we will be doing, God willing, for many years to come.

However, in the short term we still need to make some decisions about what we’ll be doing.

Josh’s course starts in September sometime, and we’ve decided that we’d like to take some time off from work before we move to Cardiff. I started work directly after finishing my degree and getting married and this could be the last time that we have a free space of time with no other ties or commitments for many years, so we want to make the most of it.

But what to do?! Obviously money is factor, but really the world is our oyster! (although we’ll probably stay in the UK!)

Although things are up in the air at the moment we’re vaguely thinking that we’ll finish work in June. Some of our current ideas include:

– visiting lots of family and friends across the country
– Camping in Pembrokeshire
– Go to Britain’s most remote pub
– Going to Soul Survivor with our church youth group
– Helping out at the SU Beach Mission in Aber
– Going on holiday with friends?
– Hostelling/ camping around Scotland

Just thinking about all that makes my stomach knot with excitement!
Have you got any tips? What would you do if you had a free summer of fun but a limited budget?

Five Fact Friday

18 Feb

1. I was given a very beautiful congratulatory bunch of flowers by my Mentor today, which brought me a lot of joy!

2. Our car has now supposedly been fixed. We had it done by a welsh farmer out in the sticks and he had to change lots of parts and it costs lots of money. He said that it was a rubbish car and it ‘drove like a donkey’. HAHAHA, love the Welsh!

3. Yesterday was my day off and we went to Pontrhydygroes hoping to see the Golden Eagle which has been hanging around there. We got out of the car and saw it soaring above us straight away! I got an unsatisfactory photo to prove we’d seen it but it was flying very high.

4. I feel like I’ve failed in my new year’s resolution this month. I’ve eaten out quite a bit with friends, so need to try and cut down on that next month. Josh has completed his new year’s resolution which was to learn all 195 countries and capitals of the world off by heart. Geek!?

5. Part of my job is to welcome all sorts of people into church and make them feel welcome. We’ve currently got a homeless man coming in regularly with long black hair. He seems fine but obviously doesn’t have many social skills because he says some weird things and often stands at the hatch window staring at me. I just got my co-worker to go and speak to him today and he said he was ‘looking at the clock and admiring the attractive receptionist [me!]! Not sure whether to be freaked out or flattered! I’m praying that we can deal with him really well as it’s actually a bit of a daunting situation sometimes!

Hope you’ve all had a great week.

Quick Questions:
1. Have you ever seen an eagle?
2. How do you deal with people in awkward situations?
3. How many countries and capitals can you name? [I can do about 5!]

Who needs a car to go somewhere fun?

10 Feb

Today the sun was shining and we were determined to enjoy our day off so we set off in the car to Pontrhydygroes to try and spot the Golden Eagle which has been hanging around there recently. However, apparently our car had other ideas because a few minutes into our journey every time we accelerated the car would lose power and judder. It was especially bad on steep hills and when the engine light came on we decided to head back because “ITS GOING TO EXPLODE!!!” [that was my helpful input into the situation]. Anyone know anything about cars? We’re hoping it’s not going to be too difficult to fix.

Anyway, I was in a strop because I really wanted to do something with my day off so we decided to catch the first bus we saw when we were back in Aber and go on an adventure. We happened upon the 526 which took us up into the hills near Penrhyncoch, and we had a lovely walk!

We walked up into the hills from the village…

…before turning off the road and plunging down into a dark pine plantation. The light was amazing, picking out hundreds of dazzling rain-droplets everywhere we looked.

Everything smelt lovely, it wasn’t too cold and you could tell that things are getting ready to burst into life in a few weeks. I’m so glad we managed to get outside this week!

Day Two – Seasons

9 Nov

Brrr…hasn’t it turned cold today? I spent most of the day huddling in my freezing office wearing a fleece that I found in the upstairs office even though it was about five sizes to big for me.

Apparently it snowed in Scotland last night. It only seems like a few weeks since the spring thaw – I hope it’s not going to be a very harsh winter again.


Today’s 30 day blogging challenge prompt is ‘Your favourite season and why’. 

I can defiantely say that my favourite season is NOT winter. I like some parts of it, the season obviously has its inviting and beautiful parts. Christmas wouldn’t be quite the same without frosty mornings and dark cosy evenings for a start. But since I’ve started working in the office I’ve come to dislike the dark winter days spent conserving heat in any way I can, and when I can go for weeks at a time without getting any real light!


I think I would have to say that my favourite season is Spring. After a long winter there is something amazing about the natural world coming out of hibernation.

Things begin to warm up, and there such an expectation for what is about to come during the rest of spring and summer. I can start dreaming of lying in wild flower meadows, staying out late watching bats flit around twilight skies, and of feeling the first warm breeze of the year.

It’s a treat to be able to get out more as the days start to lighten, and the fresh delicate greenness of new life brings joy to my soul.

Only four months to go!

Being the passenger for once

25 Jun

Yesterday was a momentous day because I was able to take this photo from the passenger seat of my car…while it was moving.


And, I was able to do this because this man was in the driving seat.

It was also a momentous day because Josh managed to drive the car for 30 minutes without either of us dying, or either of us filing for divorce.

A momentous day indeed.

Josh hasn’t passed his test yet, but he’s nearly ready. However, rather annoyingly his instructor has decided to retire. How dare he get on with enjoying his life when Josh only needed a couple more lessons before his test!?!?!

Anyway, we figured that it would make more sense for him to be put on our car insurance rather than have to learn with a whole new instructor and car. Let the fun begin!

Also, on another note, is it slightly creepy that I keep taking pictures of other people’s houses and posting them on my blog?

Yes? Oh.

But SERIOUSLY, look how cute this house is.

It’s right at the end of a wooded valley (the same one as the dream house) along a track which is unsuitable for normal vehicles, in its own little glade. I don’t think these photos do it justice – it looks like a fairy house.

Can you blame me for wanting to share our discoveries?!

Sick as a…Redstart?

17 Jun

I’m feeling blue today.

Actually, it’s probably more accurate to say that I’m feeling green – I’m sick.

This is annoying for two reasons:

1)      Being sick is one of the things I hate most in the world. Yarg.

2)      Today is the first day of five days I have off from work. I had to take them as my work year comes to an end next week and I still had a few days to take. We hadn’t planned anything, but were hoping to throw the tent in the car and go somewhere nice and enjoy some gorgeous weather.
Instead, all I have been enjoying is the view of my toilet bowl. And I use the term enjoy very loosely here.

Anyway, enough of my whining. I had planned a post today about how Josh and I have been spending our days off over the last few months.

It was all about maps.

Bet you’re devastated that I’m too sick to bother.

Instead I will just post some pictures of some great little birds we have seen recently.


For those of you not in know (and believe me, I’m not in the know but I will try and sound like I am) this is a Redstart.

Josh reliably informs me that my parents-in-law (who live in Devon) would sell their limbs to get such great views as we have recently. From that I take it that they’re pretty rare in Britain.

Apparently mid-Wales is a stronghold for them, but until now I have only ever caught fleeting glimpses of red high up in the canopy.

However, because we have been exploring more recently and have gone to some more remote places the birds have seemed a lot bolder and we have had some great views.

I will leave you with a picture that accurately sums up how I currently feel 🙂


10 Jun

Hello! Croeso! Welcome back to Dreaming of the Country.

I’m sorry for the sudden way that the website got taken offline. It started out as me trying to edit the layout and not having enough time to do it properly, and then before I knew it, life had slipped by and soon five weeks had passed without a post – or infact a website at all.

The last five weeks have been great. Spring has passed into summer and all around us things are bursting into life. Josh and and I have done tons of exploring recently and I’m planning a series of posts on all the great places we have visited.

We’ve had family to stay, I’ve found some great steals, and seen some stunning wildlife. Keep checking back over the next few days and I’ll give you a full update on things.