It counts as a Munro.

Today, the 26th February 2019 and the weather in Ayrshire was 15 degrees Celsius. That is normally a Summer’s day here. It was glorious, and the first walk I have done with OiR this year.

It was a challenge, but it needs to be, to get me fit to do Kilimanjaro in less than 6 months. The leader had decided that we would do Black Craig and Black Lorg. Black Craig is 700 metres above sea level, I am not sure how high Black Lorg is, but they are 2 distincts hills, so i am saying that I did a Munro today, and nobody is going to tell me I didn’t. The combined inclines most have been over 1000 metres, as it was a long way down from one summit, to then climb to the top of the next, as you may get the impression from these pictures.


The team from Comic Relief are currently climbing Kilimanjaro, and I can say that here in Ayrshire we drew the long straw for the weather.

I hope you are enjoying these posts. In 4 days time I hope to do a real Munro. Fingers crossed the weather stays with us.

Blessings Joy

196 Day Countdown: Journey to Moshi

The Winter weather has not been conducive for big high walks since mid-December, so I have been walking much closer to home than I had been last year, with the OiR hillwalking group.

Carrick Hills....Easter Goal

Brown Carrick Hill is a hill just 10 minutes drive from my home, and within 20 minutes of leaving my home, I can have walking boots laced up, and ready to walk. It is quiet around Ayrshire at the moment. With Easter just around the corner, I appreciate the ability to be able to park at a local caravan park, from where I head towards the beach. It’s a ten minute walk downhill, to get the muscles warm, before heading up the 274 metres to the top. The easiest way is via the tracked road, before having to cross open land, with boggy marshy spots.

Today was the first time I left the tarmac, and headed across to find the summit. It was further than I thought, but was well worth it for the sense of peace and calm that came over me, with just the sound of the birds for company. I didn’t see another person for over an hour. I tried not to think about the fact that I had left my mobile on charge at home, so if I had got into any trouble, I was totally relying on my husband to send out a search party to find me. Quite irresponsible I know. I must go out and buy myself a whistle, a simple item which might make the difference to me being found easily or not.

This is a collection of photos taken over the past few weeks on my walks up in the Carrick Hills.

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I am so lucky to have this all on my doorstep. When I am out on the hills, on my own, is when I feel the closest to God than anywhere else on Earth. I marvel at the Creative powers at work here, as I watch the tides come in and out, having an effect on my ableness to walk along the beach at times. The rawness of the wind, the changes face of Arran, who is sometimes iced in snow, and at other times is playing hide-and-seek behind the cloud cover. Arran is a timid isle, pushing it’s little sister, the Holy Isle out first from the mists.

I hope you enjoyed the update of my walks, and the changing views in the photos. Next weekend I hope to do my first Munro, weather permitting.

Blessings Joy x

Good Grief: 29 Years and Counting

Grief 29 years


It struck me today, that I have spent half of my life grieving over my stillborn son. How did that happen? I was 29 then, and 58 now. That’s half my life!

Some years have been easier than others. For some reason this year has not been a good one. There have been days in February that I have just curled up under a duvet and slept. I can’t even say it was a hygge day, as no reading, film watching or hot chocolate was involved.

I came across this poem which sums it up nicely. Credit to Laura Ding-Edwards of Herefordshire

If the mountain seems too big today

then climb a hill instead

if the morning brings you sadness

then stay in bed instead

if the day ahead weighs heavy

and your plans feel like a curse

there’s no shame in rearranging

don’t make yourself feel worse

if a shower stings like needles

and a bath as if you’ll drown

if you haven’t washed your hair for days

don’t throw away your crown

a day is not a lifetime

a rest is not defeat

don’t think of it as failure

just a quiet nice retreat

it’s okay to take a moment

from an anxious fractured mind

the world will not stop turning

while you get realigned

the mountain will still be there

when you want to try again

you can climb it in your own time

just love yourself til then.

My mountain climbing training has taken a bit of a back seat, for a day or two. Tomorrow is the anniversary, and being a Tuesday, it should be a hill-walking day with the group. I will see how I feel, that is all I can hope for.

If you have been upset by this post, then please take care of yourself, and be kind to yourself.



First Delivery of Gin

On Wednesday I joined a gin club, and blogged about it, today my free gift arrived, a bottle of Shetland Reel Gin, a citrus based one. I was so excited to try my new gift.

I was a good girl, I did a walk, did a huge pile of ironing, and then sat down to the 6 Nations England V Ireland with my first gin in hand.

My first one was with soda, as I had googled what to mix a citrus based gin with, and it suggested soda with lemon, so I did as I was told.

My second one I mixed with lemongrass and ginger cordial, and soda water.

I have to be honest, the second won wins.

What would you mix yours with?


We are sitting at half-time, and England is winning too!

I hope I have a clear head to get out and walk tomorrow for more Kili training.



Norwegian Fjords

I am so excited, that I just have to write and share this with someone. Hubby and I have just booked a short holiday, to explore the Norwegian Fjords. It is something that we have been thinking of, ever since we sailed into Oslo, on our very first cruise. It was one of the highlights of the cruise, and something we have always promised ourselves we would do again. And now we are booked to do just that. How excited am I?

Off the scale with excitement! Can’t wait.

Have you been to Norway? What can I expect, what should I do, where should I visit?

Norwegian Cruise

Carrick Hills Chapter 2


The World is a Book


Today I revisited a favourite book, by going back to the Carrick Hills, just 5 miles from home. The hills rise up over the village of Alloway, and are a weather indicator of what is coming our way. If the hills are not visible due to cloud cover, then rain is on it’s way.

The 2 pictures taken from virtually the same spot on the Carrick Hills, show the difference of the vista in 4 days. When I was up there on Tuesday, it was cold but dry. Arran in the distance was covered in snow, but the hills were green.In the past few days, the temperature has plummeted, snow had fallen and the ground was covered by a scattering of snow and care was needed, due to icy patches.

The Carrick Hills have been on my horizon, quite literally, as somewhere that I would be training on for incline and decline training in preparation for Kilimanjaro, and I honestly thought they would be more difficult that they were. This week I have surprised myself as just how easy I found them. My confidence for being fit enough for Kilimanjaro is growing daily.

Does anybody have any idea what this is?

1st Feb on Carrick Hills

Keep warm and keep safe.