"Be brave enough to live life creatively. The creative place where no one else has ever been."
- Alan Alda

KG -13-sd

I couldn’t let ‘National Tree Week’ go by without sharing some of my Kew tree photographs. For trees Kew Gardens is brimming with amazing, historical, rare & beautiful branches. Anytime of the year is a good time to go and see them, I think each season holds it own kind of magic & wonder. Of course coming up to Christmas, some of the trees are lit up from early evening for ‘Christmas at Kew’ & you can find out more about that here: http://www.kew.org/visit-kew-gardens/whats-on/christmas-at-kew-2015 The Kew website has lots more information on its tree collection: http://www.kew.org/visit-kew-gardens/explore/attractions/trees I hope you enjoy this selection of my photographs all taken in my favourite place & I hope you get to go and visit some time soon or in the coming year                                               

Market Day in Brentford

One of my great loves in life are trees & I have always wanted to live in a lane which has trees down both sides of it. I love how they tell each seasons story with such beauty, even in Winter they find a way to be bare but beautiful still I think. I realised a few years back that not everyone sees a tree in the same way I do. I remember being in a park with my sister and I said “wow look at that tree” and she said “what tree, there are loads of trees in here, a tree is a tree” & I said “no, but looks at -that- tree” …at which point she was bored and kept walking! & right in that moment I was thankful I didn’t see them as she did. For me every tree has its own story to tell & way [Read More ...]

Tower Poppies -1

I Do Not Know Your Name I do not know your name, but I know you died I do not know from where you came, but I know you died      Your uniform, branch of service, it matters not to me Whether Volunteer or Conscript, or how it came to be That politicians’ failures, or some power-mad ambition Brought you too soon to your death, in the name of any nation     You saw, you felt, you knew full well, as friend and foe were taken By bloody death, that your life too, was forfeit and forsaken Yet on you went and fought and died, in your close and private hell For Mate or Pal or Regiment and memories never to tell      It was for each other, through shot and shell, the madness you endured Side by side, through wound and pain, and comradeship assured No family ties, or bloodline link, could match that bond of friend Who [Read More ...]

Autumn -54

October gave a party; The leaves by hundreds came,— The Ashes, Oaks, and Maples, And leaves of every name. The sunshine spread a carpet, And every thing was grand; Miss Weather led the dancing; Professor Wind, the band…. The sight was like a rainbow New-fallen from the sky. ~George Cooper (1840–1927), “October’s Party,” c.1887

Peace Pagoda -4

I know we seem to have a day or a week for all sorts of reasons… did you know we have a National Vodka Day & a National Egg Day (not that I’m saying anything is wrong with eggs or vodka!) But this week it is indeed ‘National Park Week’ from the 27th July – 2nd August … a week to ‘celebrate everything that is unique and wonderful about Britain’s breathing spaces’ (http://www.nationalparks.gov.uk/visiting/national-parks-week-2015) So I thought I would share some of the parks I visit or grew up around here in West London or not far (of course there are many more). I think living in a really busy city makes our green spaces vital to our overall well being and quality of life. Where would we be without our parks! Time to reflect, visit, enjoy and appreciate them not just this week but throughout the year. RICHMOND PARK…      [Read More ...]

Met on the Southbank

I have to start by saying I am -not- a parent, but I am a qualified Nursery Nurse and auntie to 9 nieces & nephews. I love taking the children for days out that are not too far away & not too expensive but still fabulous! So I thought I would share some places that we have really enjoyed in recent years (sharing my own photographs & personal opinion). I will include links too so you can look things up further & see what else they have to offer as I’m sure I won’t cover it all. 1. Battersea Park Zoo     We love this Zoo … mostly smaller animals but some you sure wouldn’t see in every day life like the Northern Tree Shrew! My niece adores the tunnel you can go in and pop up in the middle of the Meerkat enclosure -awesome idea! I also think [Read More ...]

DSCF2599

‘I like gardening – its a place to find myself when I need to lose myself’ A.S 5 Weeks ago I wrote a blog about my ‘Sky Garden’ for National Gardening Week… and people seemed to enjoy it. Well life has been a bit hectic recently, not much time for new photos… but I decided to do an update on my balcony. It was a love of nature & photography that inspired me to learn the names of the many plants/flowers I have photographed. I spend the Winter time doing just that and hours trying to identify them all. This only served to fuel my passion and made me want to grow my own flowers at home. In February I started by planting some Primula to give me instant colour and cheer. I went on to plant bulbs and sew seeds which is almost all coming to life now. The [Read More ...]

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‘The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just on the body, but the soul’ Alfred Austin  For those who follow me on facebook you will not have escaped my posts about my ‘sky garden’! As you know my love of nature is endless and I spent some of the winter months identifying and learning the names of the ‘hundreds’ of plants & flowers I have photographed to date… it was quite an undertaking! Whilst I love photographing & being immersed in nature, I know very few actual names of things… but I’m learning fast! Then I got to thinking that I wanted to do more than take a photograph… I wanted to grow some of this beauty myself. I live high up and have a balcony space… limited but room for some potential. Several [Read More ...]

Spring -36

Following a beautiful Spring Sunshine Day at my favourite place yesterday (I’m sure you know what that is by now!) I wrote the following poem: Dear Heart… Remember to Remember When your world has turned to grey Remember all the beauty you walked in today Remember the trees full of blossom & bloom Remember Springs sweet perfume Remember the warmth of the sun on your face Remember the contentment you feel in a beautiful place Remember the cheerful Daffodil standing tall Remember how nature has renewed itself since the fall When your world has turned to grey… Dear Heart remember to remember all the beauty you walked in today. – (Words & Photographs by Karen Reader)  

By Karen Reader

       Daffodils I wandered lonely as a cloud That floats on high o’er vales and hills, When all at once I saw a crowd, A host, of golden daffodils; Beside the lake, beneath the trees, Fluttering and dancing in the breeze. Continuous as the stars that shine And twinkle on the milky way, They stretched in never-ending line Along the margin of a bay: Ten thousand saw I at a glance, Tossing their heads in sprightly dance. The waves beside them danced; but they Out-did the sparkling waves in glee: A poet could not but be gay, In such a jocund company: I gazed–and gazed–but little thought What wealth the show to me had brought: For oft, when on my couch I lie In vacant or in pensive mood, They flash upon that inward eye Which is the bliss of solitude; And then my heart with pleasure fills, And [Read More ...]

"Man's heart away from nature, becomes hard."
- Standing Bear