Tuesday 9 January 2024


Many of you don't know that my blog was named by my daughter Eva. We were trying to think of a good name, and she said "I've got it, call it "Breathtaking", I said "don't you think it's a little presumptuous" to which she said "not at all Mummy, you take wonderful photographs"! She is always so supportive of anything I do, even my paintings :=) After several other names were considered, in the end I settled on the name Breathtaking,  It was my daughter Eva who encouraged me to start a blog in the first place. She had been blogging for a few years herself, writing short stories, and poetry, and she had many followers, so she was able to get me started. I love her writing and have several of her books. One year she gave me a poem to add to my birthday gift. Originally it was written in Portuguese, but because I wanted to share it with you, it was  recently translated into English, but even though it loses a little in translation it still manages to convey a message.


"I land in silence on those who welcome me
but whom I welcome, I choose
my wings in motion.
Art surrounds those who are inspired
and whoever breathes art, meanders
between the valleys and the fields like the wind
tilting the wheat and the chest in one direction
not always that of reason...

Beauty never surprises
It only takes breath away...
Nature is so vast.
At the top of the hill I see and charge
I give up, I give in to the lack of oxygen
Watercolours, pastel or charcoal,
I bow down to genius canvases,
I hold my breath...

I fly over the perfect painting
incalculable value if auctioned
Packed in an unsuspecting way
handled without care, the unthinkable...
An insatiable (ir)rational species
smudges this palette,
destroys our planet
in a butterfly effect...

I'm out of breath...
moths, birds and flowers
I land to enhance my colours.
At the foot of the hill I collect my wings and brushes,
spiders, lizards and praying mantises, you will say,
you, believers in something more
evidence of signs of the Divine,
captured by skilful lenses in patient hands."

Eva Gonçalves 2012-05-03

Tuesday 2 January 2024


Happy New Year everyone :=) I hope 2024 will bring us joy like no other year. I wish you all much love and happiness with good health, and especially to those of us who have problems of one kind or another the strength and courage to see the way forward. As this is my first post of the year I have endeavoured to make it both beautiful and add an element of fun with  the  endearing  G.S.Woodpecker who is a regular visitor to my balcony. and I have been searching through my latest photos to make you smile as I do when I see his cute face peering over the balcony ledge. I hope I have succeeded.

What do you think of "Will" for his name? Will the Woodpecker, rolls off the tongue quite nicely, unless this image is of a female.:=) You see there are two, male and female, and unless I can see the red patch of colour on the back of the head, I can't tell the difference between them.

The female could be called "Wilhelmina the Woodpecker" although it is more of a mouthful,:=) Perhaps you are thinking why give them names at all, and the answer to that is because I have become very fond of them, as they are welcome visitors every day, and as I have already mentioned there heads looking over the ledge give me enormous pleasure. Their undeniable cuteness always raises a smile from me.

A closeup of the beautiful European Jay.

White Azalea in bloom in the garden.

About to fly towards my balcony.

Dianthus flowers are still in bloom

A closer look

A  Eurasian Jay actually on my balcony.

A Camellia in full bloom.

On the same large shrub these Camellia buds will soon be  blooming.

Hello and Good Morning :=)

Your breakfast awaits you.

More Azalea buds.

Some Azalea's are already blooming

I like to see the windswept feathers on top of the head.

Another closeup of the European Jay

This is Will! You can just see a little of the red patch on the back of his head.

To finish my post I am closing with the same image as my first one.:=). I have decided to call the female Woodpecker Wilma as it seems to be the most popular name. A big thank you for everyone's best wishes for Christmas and New Year. I hope you had a happy time and celebrated both with loved ones. I will be visiting soon.
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