Adventure Brown

Im Lew - A blogger and father of two boys, three if you include the dog, living in Sunderland. Not sure I have the hang of this blog niche thing but hey ho, I'm doing it anyway - expect all sorts of randomness.

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Rigrigg Meadows is located on the shores of Windermere, just before you get to Bowness. Its a nice walk around through woodland and waterfalls and the water edge itself. you do have to pay for car parking and it can get quite expensive in Windermere, I think it costs about £3 for 2 hours and up to £10 all day. There are also toilets in the car park but you have to pay to access those.

I went here for Sunset and Sunrise on 2 separate days, the Sunset worked out pretty well, however Sunrise didn’t happen and it was too wet and foggy, but it didn’t stop me I still got up early and ventured out as sometimes the risk pays off.

This is a popular place for people during the day and on a night so if you were to come here, maybe sunrise may be better as when I was there it was very busy and I was lucky to get a shot.

Down at the waters edge are two jetties, the jetty to the left is more photogenic as the posts stick up further making for a more interesting image, still, both are photogenic.

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This was the only image I caught on sunset, I needed more clouds for the light to bounce off but it didn’t happen, the colour could have been there but its a shame it didn’t really happen for me, Its an image I didn’t really want to share because it doesn’t really do anything for me, but I felt I needed t show it for location purposes.

The second image is my favourite, the sunrise never happened, it was very moody, and foggy down by the water, I knew as soon as I seen the conditions what type of shot I wanted, and these types of settings I think it needs to be in Black and White.

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Rayrigg Meadows – Windermere, Lake District

In a dull flat setting Black and White always suites, there is no colour, just greys and blacks. In the above image I have tried to pull as much out of the image as possible, and I was able to do this by shooting the image in a RAW format. as you can see it has become very grainy and noisey, but those clouds and fog give the image depth and I love how the jetty looks as if it is going on forever, as if it were a bridge to the unknown.

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This image is exactly the same as the previous, this image was edited using Lightroom CC, where as the other was used using LR and Silver Efex.

There is potential here and it would be a location I would love to come back to, just a shame I didn’t quite get the conditions I was after. I did record a short vlog on this location, you can check it out at the bottom of this post.

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Im Lew – A blogger and father of two boys, three if you include the dog, living in Sunderland. Not sure I have the hang of this blog niche thing but hey ho, I’m doing it anyway – expect all sorts of randomness.

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Adventure Brown

Im Lew – A blogger and father of two boys, three if you include the dog, living in Sunderland. Not sure I have the hang of this blog niche thing but hey ho, I’m doing it anyway – expect all sorts of randomness.

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At last, we made it on to our first camping trip, and actually survived it. We took delivery of our first folding camper at the beginning of the year but due to having no tow bar on any of our vehicles and the time of year we put off until we got some essentials sorted.

So for our first trip we wanted to stay reasonably close to home just in case, but far enough away that it actually felt like we were on holiday. We took to the internet for a little bit of inspiration and decided upon somewhere in Northumberland so we were only an hours drive from home, somewhere we were fairly familiar with but yet interesting enough to feel as though we were getting a holiday.

We decided on SpringHill Farm. We had read a blog post on North East Family Fun on the top 10 places in the North East  to stop.  springhill was one of the sites reccomended and it caught our eye. The site itself houses holiday cottages, as well as camping pods but its main focus is the camping site. The review swung us as it looked as though it suited our needs so we took to the computer and booked up.

This was my first time towing anything, and im going to be honest and not act all MANLY here – I was shitting it. To be fair, it was nerve wracking, plus my towing wing mirrors came off mid journey so it didn’t help that I couldn’t see properly. But we made it in one piece and in fairly good time – practice makes perfect – hopefully!

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On arrival to the site there is a board with your booking name on telling you where you will be placed on the site, I did read that you  dont have to check in and all you need to do is look on the board for your pitch and go get set up, but I still went in and got a friendly greeting.

Our pitch was No 2 on the camping field. We couldn’t have got a better pitch with views of Bamburgh Castle and the Farne Islands to our right. It didn’t take us long to set up, but it was hard work and with 2 kids in tow plus a dog to keep our eye on, we certainly deserved a drink afterwards. After setting up it was too late to cook anything, or more like we were so drained from the day we couldn’t be bothered, so we headed out to Seahouses for some Fish and Chips at Neptunes.

The Site

The site is set back away from the main road side of the between Seahouses and Bamburgh and into the peaceful countryside. You still get the great views of the sea yet you have the wonderful greenery surrounding you. The site itself is very family friendly and dog friendly too. Springhill Farm suites everyones holiday requirements by allowing tents, folding campers, caravans and motorhomes. However if you dont own any of these then you czn stay in the wigwams they have on site which are situated near the main reception, or you could opt for something a little closer to home and stay in the cottage lets, these are located just off site away from the main camping and caravan fields.

The site is very clean, tidy and well maintained. The pitches themselves had so much room around them, it didn’t feel like everyone was on top of each other, unlike other sites where your crammed into the pitches like sardines.

The shower block on site is again very clean and basic, it has what you need, the bonus of this is it also has a family room which has a bath in which when you have small children can come in handy as it did with us.

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Springhill is actually a working farm so as you drive in your passing the farm house and barnes as well as the holiday lets you can rent out, but you can see the wonderful highland cows in the fields just at the entrance of the site.

Their is a small onsite shop, which to be honest doesn’t come overly well equipped, however it had enough in case of emergencies.But there is a few local shops nearby in Seahouses, 5 minutes down the road, just incase you were to need anything, The nearest supermarket is about 15 miles away.

The site also has a small play park located at the rear of the site and is all fenced off and again is well maintained, Zach never bothered with it only because we were always busy doing other things. There is room for the kids to run about and burn off energy, play football or fly kites.

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Whats around

Depending on what your purpose for staying on the Northumberland coastline is it can meet a lot of interests. They are so many places to visit both at the coast and further in land.

Seahouses itself is a 5 minutes drive, It doesn’t have a vast array of things to do here, but it is still nice to walk around this seaside town.  There are plenty of fish and chip shops, but Neptunes is my favourite, you can take away or sit in and enjoy your meal. If you have little ones there is a small mini golf just opposite Neptune’s and a few little shops to get those important souvenirs. I am sure i also spotted an amusemnts too.

If you do visit Seahouses, you can book a boat trip to the Farne Islands  from here. 

The Islands can be seen from Bamburgh beach and offers so much more than a little boat trip. You can Bird watch and see the beautiful puffin birds (in season), you can see the seals, dive, and even go for sunset if your into photography. Or you can just watch them from afar whilst sitting enjoying the golden sand on the beach.

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Bamburgh beach is a beautiful stretch of clean golden sand, you can walk from the castle to seahouses,  but im unsure of the distance – but it is quite a walk especially with little legs. If taking the car then you have plenty of space to park up for the day in both free car parks and also in gravelled lay bys all along the road. Wherever you seem to park you are a five minute walk down onto the beach through the dunes. See my photography vlog here>>> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DmkmNSgFSJU

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These are the 3 main attractions around the camp site, all of which are both within fair walking distance. But if you dont mind jumping in the car and traveling then you can open up your options for different days out. Without going too far in the car here are a few different ideas.

  • Alnwick Castle and Gardens
  • Holy Island (check tide times for crossing)
  • Dunstanburgh Castle
  • Almouth
  • Howick

 

Camping score

The site 8/10

Facilities 9/10

The Pitch 9/10

Amenities 6/10

Overall 8/10

 

 

 

Potty Adventures

Im Lew – A blogger and father of two boys, three if you include the dog, living in Sunderland. Not sure I have the hang of this blog niche thing but hey ho, I’m doing it anyway – expect all sorts of randomness.

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Adventure Brown

Im Lew – A blogger and father of two boys, three if you include the dog, living in Sunderland. Not sure I have the hang of this blog niche thing but hey ho, I’m doing it anyway – expect all sorts of randomness.

In our family I am usually the one behind the camera taking the photos and as a result I’m hardly ever in the images. Unless I set up my camera on a tripod, set the timer and dash back to get in the shot. It’s time consuming and doesn’t usually get the results I am looking for. When we go out for days or even go on holiday, all the photos I take are of the kids enjoying themselves or with the missus and  kids. I rarely feature in any of the photos taken on my camera. The missus takes a few sly shots on her Iphone when she thinks im not looking but other than that we have very few family shots with us all together.

I recently got the chance to get my photo taken with my family…  you can imagine my delight when this opportunity came about and I was offered a mnishoot with Mandy Charlton.  Mandy is a professional photographer based in Newcastle, North East of England.

Mandy suggested a couple of locations to choose for the shoot, one of which was Jesmond Dene. The Dene has a lot to offer with the river, blossom trees that were bang on in season for when our photos were being taken and open grassed areas, as well as the animals and play park area.

We met Mandy on a sunny Sunday afternoon at 1:30 near the information centre in the Dene, she was bang on time and we were all raring to get started. After a few introductions it was straight into the shooting. I am not a one for staged photos and prefer natural shots. Partly because i am like Chandler from Friends….if you have ever seen the episode when he is getting his photos taken for his wedding announcement…ask me to smile and i go all awkward and my smile is less than attractive!!

The session lasted approximately 45minutes and it certainly felt like we got a range of images in different areas of the park. Zachs favourite part of the session was definitely when Mandy offered him a chocolate out of her bag for doing some top notch smiles for her camera.

It only took around 3 days for the images to be ready and we received our photos via Dropbox, easy downloaded and easy usuable, no disks or memory sticks that can be lost.

I was really impressed with the images and hope to get our favourite printed and framed for the house.

Mandy Charlton Photography

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Disclaimer: I was gifted a free photoshoot in return for this review. All thoughts, opinions are my own. 

Im Lew – A blogger and father of two boys, three if you include the dog, living in Sunderland. Not sure I have the hang of this blog niche thing but hey ho, I’m doing it anyway – expect all sorts of randomness.

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Adventure Brown

Im Lew – A blogger and father of two boys, three if you include the dog, living in Sunderland. Not sure I have the hang of this blog niche thing but hey ho, I’m doing it anyway – expect all sorts of randomness.

I have recently been camping in Seahouses, and with the beautiful Bamburgh Castle right on my door step I needed to go and photography this wonderful structure.

For those who don’t know, the castle is located in Northumberland right on the North East coast, it stands high on top of the hill overlooking the North Sea.

The Castle itself ofers so many photo opportunities and from so many different angles. It is part surrounded by sand dunes which make for a good foreground. I opted to stay in the dunes from the south beach, However if you want to shoot from the sand you need to go to the North beach.

It did take me a while to find a good composition but when I did I was quite happy with the results.

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I wanted to capture the sun rays because there wasnt much going on in the sky, I would have like a few more clouds for the light to bounce off and give me more colour but it didnt happen so the next best thing was rays.

As you can see from this image the amount of dunes, these stretch nearly as far as Seahouses itself .

After this I moved over the dunes for a different shot, The sun sets so quick I barely had time to get there.

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Im Lew – A blogger and father of two boys, three if you include the dog, living in Sunderland. Not sure I have the hang of this blog niche thing but hey ho, I’m doing it anyway – expect all sorts of randomness.

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Adventure Brown

Im Lew – A blogger and father of two boys, three if you include the dog, living in Sunderland. Not sure I have the hang of this blog niche thing but hey ho, I’m doing it anyway – expect all sorts of randomness.

Both of our children already have so many toys between them and yet we still seem to be collecting more. We all do it, we’re all guilty of over purchasing to some extent, and we’re all guilty of letting all the toys stack up, both old and new, most of them getting forgotten about. We live in a throw away world nowadays and yet we sometimes find ourselves never throwing anything away.

Children can have so many toys, most of which just never get regularly played with. Then what happens? They end up at the bottom of a pile never to be seen again, or sometimes they don’t even make it out the box.

To prevent the dreaded waste of toys I have put together a few tips to help you organise toys so your child may never get bored with what he or she plays with. Lets face it, there are always going to be toys that our children will always look to play with and favoured over others but if we learn to alternate them then it may prevent them getting bored of them.

In my eldest sons room we have bought two IKEA shelving units and storage boxes. In each box we have separated his toys into categories.  So for example in one box we have a collection of cars and trucks, another has his dinosaurs, or another has jigsaws. We have a total of 8 boxes in his room as well as other overflow plastic storage boxes that we keep in the garage, which house his Lego and train set collections.

Every day we will get a different box out from his bedroom and bring it downstairs for him to play with. Its a great idea for young children, as we all know attention spans aren’t great so having something different to play with each day should help. This way every toy that they own should then at least be played with at some point and not left to gather dust somewhere. Then as your child grows out of toys or gets new toys; you could donate your toys to a charity and add the new toys to the box.

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Under-bed storage

Make use of all the dead space you can. A layered sliding storage can be especially made for the under-bed area or you can just put things in a handy boxes under the bed, we bought a handmade bed that was made to our specification, rather than bunkbeds I opted for a cabin bed with built in wardrobe, cubby hole and plenty of storage.

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This was when we first got the bed, but as you can see there is a large draw under the bed, as well as each step on the left is a draw for storage.

Storage cubes

storage boxes and IKEA cubes are brilliant for storage, these are easy to build and stack up and Zach can get a box out when he wants, each box has been categorised rather than everything being put in and mixed together.

 

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Up on the rod

Here I found an old rod in the garage which I attached to the bed and it made a perfect place to hand all of Zachs dress up clothes.

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Im Lew – A blogger and father of two boys, three if you include the dog, living in Sunderland. Not sure I have the hang of this blog niche thing but hey ho, I’m doing it anyway – expect all sorts of randomness.

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Adventure Brown

Im Lew – A blogger and father of two boys, three if you include the dog, living in Sunderland. Not sure I have the hang of this blog niche thing but hey ho, I’m doing it anyway – expect all sorts of randomness.