Postcard from Gibraltar Review of 2018

Well here we are at the end of another year, it’s been a year of crafty and photo challenges, and on the whole a good one for the Postcard clan. It’s only now I’ve taken a look back at what we’ve done that I realised that we’ve packed a lot in! Here are some of my highlights from 2018…

January

I started the year off with a lovely walk up the Rock, those paperwhite narcissi were photographed on New Year’s Day. After enjoying participating in a photo challenge in 2017 under the stewardship of Sandra at Wild Daffodil, I decided to have a go at running one in 2018, so #postcardfromgibfridayphoto was born on Instagram and in Blogland. I also embarked on the Seaside Stash Busting Blanket CAL in January too. Little did I know what fun it would become.

February

February saw plenty more crochet and a fair bit of watercolour painting, along with the arrival of HMS Queen Elizabeth to Gibraltar. The huge Royal Naval aircraft carrier was quite a sight to behold.

March

March, very fortunately for us was a month for travel, first to attempt skiing for the very first time in the Italian Dolomites – it was amazing, and second to take the Little Postcards on an Easter trip to the South of England.

April

We began April on Easter Sunday on the Jurassic Coast in Devon, then headed to London for a few days before heading home. It was a fun trip.

May

May meant Med Steps 5 Challenge, Gibraltar’s Comic Con and some lovely spring weather.

June

June brought with it the Calentita! food festival and my very first printed article in the Calentita! magazine. We celebrated World Environment Day and I had a go at Yarnbombing the Alameda Gardens!

July

Summer holidays we the order of the day in July (along with my now traditional annual Summer Craft Challenge). We headed off to Suffolk to help celebrate a big birthday for a member of the Postcard family. We traveled by plane, old trains and kayak! Which reminds me, we went to a fabulous country fair at Worstead, I really should get a post written about that…

August

August was spent in Suffolk, Gibraltar and visiting my family in Manchester. We watched acrobats and magicians in Gib and followed the Bee trail around Manchester.

September

Back to Gibraltar in time for school starting and the end of the Gibraltar Fair. We had National Day celebrations and the MTV Presents Gibraltar Calling Music Festival.

October

At midterm in October we headed off for a short break in Portugal. We’re so lucky to be able to drive to so many lovely places from where we live. This was also the month that I finished my Sandy Bay blanket.

November

November began for us in Portugal and ended with the Christmas light switch on with the fabulous Gibraltar Literary Festival in between. It’s a truly wonderful festival which happens right on our doorstep.

December

December saw the end of the Friday photo challenge I curated as well as a rather pleasant pre Christmas trip up the Med Steps

Thank you to everyone who has followed and read my posts this year, it’s been lovely to know that there’s someone out there actually reading them! I hope that 2018 has been a good year for you and that 2019 is too!

Monthly meet-up August : Flake

This month’s monthly meet-up prompt is flake. There can only really be one can’t there? This was mine while strolling along the prom prom prom in Great Yarmouth a couple of weeks ago.

The only other ‘flake’ I could think of was flaking paint and masonry. It was something I was drawn to a couple of years back as I wandered around the streets of Gibraltar’s Upper Town armed with my camera…

This door inspired me into painting my own watercolour version of it…

I’m linking with Sandra at Wild Daffodil for this bloggers’ monthly meet-up.

Monthly meet-up July : Sculpture

July’s prompt for the monthly blogger’s meet-up arranged by Sandra at Wild Daffodil is sculpture.

Last summer we saw many, many sculptures on our travels, especially in Rome, but this one stuck with me most of all. It was a fountain in Toulouse, in southern France, and was erected to commemorate the 210 victims of a flood in 1875. It was beautiful and poignant.

The fountain can be found in Place Olivier in Toulouse.

Sunday Sevens #143 1.7.18

Hello and welcome to this week’s edition of Sunday Sevens. The first of July… how on earth did we get to this point already? I feel full of excitement about what the summer might have in store for us.

Without further ado, here’s this week’s round up of what I’ve been up to…

Enforced tidy up!

It’s been needed for a long time, but at last, thanks to the arrival of tradesmen to sort out our rather old fashioned floor tiles, I was forced to sort out my sewing/ crafty broom cupboard. I can just fit a chair in when the door’s open to sew at my machine. Let’s see how long this new tidy arrangement lasts…

Sports day season

So as time marches on towards the end of term, sports day season is well underway. This week I had one to go to. It’s a rather warm affair as you sit on the stand at the Victoria Stadium in direct sunlight toasting nicely like a rotisserie chicken. At least the view is stunning, even if you can’t make out which one of those many children actually belong to you!! There can’t be too many places in the world with a more impressive setting for their school sports days…

Morning sun, again

I realise that this photo is rather a lot like the last one, in that it features the Rock and the morning sunshine. I was parking my car one morning and glanced up to see the sunshine casting long shadows formed by the chimneys across Casemates Square from where I was and thought it worthy of a photograph. I was en-route to my sewing class, unfortunately as I am working on something which is a surprise for someone who may see this, I can’t share it just yet. I will though, later on in the summer.

Bright bougainvillea

The bougainvillea is looking fab throughout Gibraltar at the moment and it looks at its best set off against a cloudless blue sky. This great swathe of red / pink blossom caught my eye as I was walking in South District this week, it looked lovely against Parsons Lodge.

Last watercolour lesson

It’s approaching the end of the academic year for children in Gibraltar and this week, I went to my last watercolour class until September. I spent the lesson working on an exercise by William Newton. It didn’t quite turn out like the picture in the book, but it was good fun. I’ll miss my lessons over the summer break, but am determined that I will find time to pick up my brushes at some point before September.

A new perspective

One evening this week, I visited a building I hadn’t been to before – one of the towers at Brympton. I find it amazing that despite Gibraltar being so small, it can be quite easy to find yourself face to face with a view of Gib that’s completely new to you. My trip coincided with a meteorological phenomenon which is rather unusual for this part of the world. The cotton wool ball effect strip of clouds are called Altocumulus Floccus, and looked rather fantastic.

Happy birthday Postcard from Gibraltar!

I didn’t actually realise it on the day, but this Tuesday Postcard from Gibraltar turned three! In some ways it feels like Postcard from Gib has been with me for a lot longer than that. It has opened doors for me, like giving me the opportunity to write for a couple of publications and websites but most important of all, it’s introduced me to a whole host of lovely people around the world, for which I am most grateful for.

Thanks so much for stopping by this weekend, I hope that wherever you are in the world, you are having a lovely weekend. I’m linking with Natalie from Threads & Bobbins for this weekly blog series.

June monthly meet-up : sunlight

This month’s monthly meet-up theme is ‘Sunlight’. Living in Gibraltar, we are blessed with quite a lot of that, this photo is of a sunset, as seen from our front door. I loved that the seagulls swooped into view while I took it.

My favourite sunlight photos though, have got to be of the inside of the Pantheon in Rome. The beam of sunlight which comes through the ancient domed roof is breathtaking.

It has got to be seen to be believed. A truly awe inspiring place.

I’m linking with Wild Daffodil for this monthly blog meet-up.

2018 Friday Photo Challenge (Week 5) Green & January round up

Green is the theme of this week’s Postcard from Gibraltar Friday Photo Challenge. I am a huge fan of green when it comes to the great outdoors.

I like nothing more than a woodland walk in the summertime – it’s always a highlight of my trips back home to England.

These photos (above) were taken on a walk in Wigan, in Lancashire last spring.

Just look at that patchwork of green fields in Cheshire as we took off from Manchester airport.

Gibraltar does have. Bit of green too though, these two photos were taken on a walk up the Med Steps, in the Upper Rock Nature Reserve.

Now, here’s a round up of some of the other entries to the Friday Photo Challenge during January:

Week 1 New Beginnings 

This photo challenge got off to a great start on Instagram with Sandra Capano (@capanosandra) featuring the first Gibraltarian sunrise of the New Year and others marking the beginning of a new chapter in their lives with retirement (@janetbryden) and a house move (@rainbowsnmore)!

In blogland Sandra at Wild Daffodil joined it too with her new Attic 24 blanket along with Anne Marie Hearinga  who featured New Year fireworks as her new beginning in Instagram.

2018 Friday Photo Challenge (Week 1) New Beginnings

Home

On Instagram there were some lovely photos of people’s homes, from a beautiful cross-stitch embroidery of houses by @hookstitchsew and views of Lincoln (@pinklady558), the Black Isle in the Highlands of Scotland (@bluejake235), Swanpool beach in Cornwall (@dwphotography63), a cottage in Oxforshire (@isisgem) along with a front door to die for from (@kathycobrey). Not forgetting @alisoninadalucia who featured a lovely mosaic of the Legs of Man, from her home the Isle of Man.

Anne Marie Hearinga originally from the Netherlands, but now residing in Gibraltar, also joined in posting photos of her two cats on Instagram and writing about her many house moves on her blog.

2018 Friday Photo Challenge (Week 2) Home

Me, Myself & I

I was a little bit silly putting this as one of the prompts for the photo challenge seeing as I’m a bit camera shy online. It’s something I have thought about a lot, especially as I was recently approached by someone who wanted to feature me in his work. It was a huge honour to be asked, but for reasons of privacy, I declined as it would have meant me having my face and name all over the shop. I fear that once it’s out, there’s no getting it back and I like the shroud of anonymity, especially living in Gibraltar (which has a population of just 30,000). As it is, I have been rumbled by several people already.

I guess I’m a bit chicken about ‘coming out’ as a blogger, I don’t want people to think I’m silly and frivolous. This is just a hobby of mine, which I love and I don’t want people judging me for it. There, I’ve said it. Perhaps one day you’ll see more than just my shadow, but for now, that’s all you’re getting!

On Instagram, it was lovely to see so many of your faces, some of whom are new to me since beginning this challenge, others, I have followed and have followed me for a while. Again, Anne Marie Heeringa joined in with another blog post and a photo on Istagram. I’m pleased to say that I wasn’t the only shadowy figure to feature in this challenge check out @familyfaulds for a lovely snowy shadow.

2018 Friday Photo Challenge (Week 3) Me, Myself & I

Hobby

My word, you are a talented an interesting lot! So many brilliant hobbies were on show on Instagram for this photo challenge, crochet (@tsdailytreasures), baking (@janetbryden), painting, knitting (@capanosandra), photography, reading, gardening (@alisoninadalucia), film watching, patchwork, embroidery, birdwatching (@isisgem), MotoGP (@mrsscjohnson) and even anti-gravity fitness!! Sandra at Wild Daffodil joined in too with her fast growing Attic24 blanket!

I have been truly overwhelmed by all of the people who have decided to join in on this weekly photo challenge so far. I have done my best to mention most of them in this blog post, however I do apologise profusely if I have missed anyone out. If you want to see the Instagram photos for yourself, just search the #postcardfromgibfridayphoto hashtag to see them all there (over 50 were there at the last count). Thank you so much for all joining in!

If you haven’t yet had a go, and would like to, please feel free to dip in and out as you like, there’s no obligation to stick with it for every week of 2018, just as and when you fancy it. You can join in on your blog (if you have one) just leave a link in the comments below and I can find you that way. Alternatively join in on Instagram using the #postcardfromgibfridayphoto hashtag and you can join the gang!

Have a lovely weekend and a great February everyone!

2018 Friday Photo Challenge (Week 4) Hobby

It couldn’t just be one photo for this week, I guess I have too many hobbies…

Since putting my career on hold to start a family, and then moving to Gibraltar, I have been lucky enough to be able to carve out a bit of free time to do fun stuff as the children have got older. I was always quite crafty as a young girl and enjoyed sewing and creating things, these days I love to crochet and do some embroidery in my spare time. I also attend watercolour and dressmaking classes during school term times (following the path of creative study I would have liked to do in my youth but opted for the ‘sensible’ academic option which came up trumps and got me a job to pay the for mortgage).

But that’s not all, my other hobby is wandering round Gibraltar taking loads of photos and then turning those into blog posts about where we live. It is that hobby which has broadened my horizons as a stay-at-home Mum and reconnected me to the outside world after over a decade out of the workplace. It also gave me the confidence to go back to work on a part-time basis, something which I am really enjoying.

If you fancy joining in with the Postcard from Gibraltar Friday Photo Challenge, you can do that on your blog or via Instagram. Just tag me in your post or post your blog link into the comments below, or use the tag #postcardfromgibfridayphoto on Instagram so we can all see each other’s photos.