A couple of blog posts ago, I touched on some of my favourite locations for an engagement shoot, and one of the places I recommended was Sense Vally in Ibstock. Well, since the weather was reasonably decent this morning, myself, Rachel and my daughter Alice decided to venture out for a bit of exercise and to feed the ducks.
We pulled up, parked the mini in the first available spot (There weren't many!) and set off on our walk around the perimeter of the lake in search of a large family of mallards we could give some of Rachel's special duck feed to, which I'm told they like MUCH more than stale bread, and contain a multitude of tasty sea creatures which are better for their health.
At Sense Valley, they have a little drop-off, which I'm assuming they use for if they ever need to put boats into the water, but it also handily doubles up as a nice area to get right to the water's edge and feed the birds. Well when we arrived it was more or less apparent they'd been fed for the day, and despite Alice and Rachel's downpour of duck feed, they just weren't bothered. Even the seagulls weren't interested, and years of seaside trips have taught me they'll eat anything!
Feeding the ducks was a massive fail, I don't think we managed to feed one single duck, even after we'd tried a multitude of different spots. No matter how much feed we put out, they just weren't having it. So we decided to call off Mr and Mrs Puddleduck's gourmet lunch and continued on a nice little walk around the lake.
When I was younger, I was very privileged to have lived just at the edge of Thringstone woods. I was always told under no uncertain terms, that I was NOT to go down the woods without an adult as a small boy such as myself would find more than his fair share of things to cause varying degrees of bodily harm.
So naturally, I spent every waking moment out with my friends climbing trees, making dens and just generally worrying my parents sick. To this day, I don't think my mum has any idea how much time I used to spend down there.
Anyway, back to the story in hand, when I even smaller, and actually attended the woods with my mum, I can always remember playing Pooh Sticks over one of the bridges in the woods.
For those of you that don't know, Pooh sticks is a fairly simple game with really only 3 basic requirements. First, you need a brook or a stream. Secondly, you need a bridge over said brook/stream, and thirdly and most importantly, you need the BEST stick you can find. Once all players have acquired their stick of choice, you line up across one side of the bridge, with the flow of water heading towards you, and then you jettison your stick into the water at the same time as your opponents. The winner is the person whose stick floats downstream and appears at the other side of the bridge first. Simple right?
At Sense Vally, they have a multitude of bridges, PERFECT for an epic game of Pooh Sticks, so I suggested a game as to my horror, Rachel had never played. We all selected a stick, threw them off the bridge, and ran to the other side to see who was going to be the winner.
Rachel won. Beginners luck if you ask me.
After our game, we headed off and walked slowly back towards the car, when it occurred to me the last time I'd been for a walk around Sense Vally was New Years Day. As I looked around, it was amazing to see spring bursting into life, with little patches of Daffodils and buds on trees beginning to appear. It completely changed the feel of the place, which ALMOST made it seem like summer was on its way.
So how is this relevant to weddings and photography?
Well, of course, I took my camera for starters, but it got me thinking about wedding season as a whole, and how most couples elect for a summer wedding primarily.
Due to the restrictions, and people having to push their wedding dates back, I think a lot of couples have been disappointed that venues have only had spaces outside of summer. Don't get me wrong, summer weddings are awesome, but spring, autumn, and winter come with their own advantages. Whatever date you end up with for your wedding, embrace the season and make it your own.
Bit of a long one this week, think I waffled on a little bit too much!
See you next Sunday for another installment.