Thursday, 3 June 2010

St Mary's Denham

Denham Village also has an amazing church which was open on the day of the fayre so I got the opportunity to capture some images inside as well which was an amazing experience...

Denham Village Fayre

I love England in the summer! It has so many different traditional charms and activities that make the season seem that much more magical! One such charm is the traditional English village fayres, a long standing tradition in England. Many local villagers and a few travelling professional performers came together in a local village to create an extraordinary array of stalls offering games to play, tombola's, products to win, local produce like homemade jam, and cakes. They have lots of children's entertainment including Splat the Rat, Punch and Judy shows, jumble sales, bric-a-brack stalls, jumping castles, theme park style rides, coconut shies and sometimes even a group of local Army cadets! There are also competitions and other events including live local bands and acts, dances, and lots and lots of food and drink  to be enjoyed...not forgetting candy floss! 

I attended one such fayre in Denham Village, Buckinghamshire, set in an idyllic countryside scene which could have been a postcard, complete with a river running through it and swans too! I was absolutely taken aback with the array of colour and the sheer volume of people that I barely took any pictures! At first it was the temptation to joining the army cadets in their 'fight on the slippery pole' game, then i was drawn in by the live brass band and the laughter of children on games and rides, running around eating candy floss which i had to join them in! There were so many stalls with lots of amazing games, things for sale, vintage clothing items and accessories...the atmosphere was electric and we had an amazing day out full of fun and laughter!  Here are some images from the day...

Artisitc Self Portrait

This is me, messing around with colour, light and exposure...having a great time!

A letter of advice to the 16yr old version of myself...


Dear 16 yr old me,  

It’s been 13yrs since I was you, believe me when I say your life is about to really get interesting! 
But first some housekeeping: ONLY OSTRICHES BURY THEIR HEADS IN THE SAND!!!! So stop it!!!! Get a clue love...  Having said that, you do deserve the best, you don't have to settle and you don't have to apologise for wanting to be treated with love and respect or for demanding it especially from those closest to you. When it comes to spirituality, you have slowly drifted from God since your 'Sold out' days, repent and get it right ASAP, you will need Him for life! Listen to Mum and Dad, I know your relationship with them is not particularly deep but in the next 13years they are going to become some of your best friends so stop fighting Mum and take time to enjoy them as you will soon be leaving home...

You are about to fall in love for the first time, don't fight it or expect the other shoe to drop & that you  will screw it up somehow...he really does love you trust that, especially when you feel like he doesn't...he will give you a love that is incomparable and you will have it for life... Burying your head in the sand is for ostriches not people, don't do it girl!!! -- Your heart will break  & the jury is still out on if and when it will heal but eventually they say all hearts heal post their first love, just not as it was before (he is going to keep a big junk of it too by the way if you're wondering where you lost it) so the next time you fall in love it wont be the same but hey, you WILL find love again and you will be genuinely happy again honey, trust me...God will make a way :-) Your pride will however be your downfall so watch that...No matter what happens don't ever stop believing in and giving love...that is the purpose with which God created you.

If you get nothing else from this letter get this; You don't always get a second chance in life so live and love in each day as if it’s your last opportunity because people will walk in and out of your life even if you don't want them to, so make the best of your time with them while they are with you. Forgive quickly, never holding a grudge, If you ever do get a second chance grab it with both hands and hold on tight and don't ever let it go again. 
In life all you can do is your best  believe in yourself, the rest will work itself out. Nothing the world throws at you will kill you (though it will hurt a lot!) it will only make you stronger...You are as strong as you portray, it’s not just an act,  and you will need that strength when you're 18 and the bottom falls out of your world. But if you hold on, you will make it through, God is there, He will help you, turn to Him... That said, you will be ok, I'm still here...

Enjoy Australia (watch the diet, we put on loads of weight post Aussie and that heralded the weight battle that we are yet to win). Do everything! try anything once! Take photography seriously immediately, you have some raw talent and if you start applying yourself now you will be really great later. Pay more attention at school, I know you hate it and feel you’re not good at it but you do have a brain! You just need to believe in and apply yourself. Definitely go to law school! You will love it, but be prepared that you may not practice so start thinking about how you want to use the law in alternative ways as a backup plan so you don't waste time exploring different careers you will get bored with easily. Don't be afraid to re-invent yourself at anytime as you go along, there are no hard and fast rules in life except those you set for yourself! You are creative! Don’t forget that you are and let your creativity lay dormant, use it! Experiment with different artistic expressions and find your thing (p.s. you can sing! Not as good as Mary but you don't have to be as good as your big sister just because you look up to her, your voice is good enough, develop it and later you may find yourself writing songs!!!!And singing solo!!!! I know it sounds crazy but like I said, God has made you a creative person!)

About love...your will love one or two men as you go along, in fact you are now in the early stages of a romance with your first love and you will be with him for four years!!! I know it sounds like a lifetime as your track record on relationships so far has been short, sweet and strictly will scare you and you will run, you will fight it and question if its is real and as firsts go, you picked well...your first love on balance is a great guy and in that relationship you will learn what love really is...take careful notes, try not to get upset with him so much when he seems to be defending the world against you, he is just trying to help you see that every story has two sides, a lesson you will need to hold on to. When his world comes crashing in, be there...stand by him...fight for him, he needs you more that his pride will let him admit but if you stay it will change everything...When all is said and done, if you do what I did, you will hurt him, he will hurt you, but you need to muster up the courage to forgive... people fail you, this is what we do, there will be no perfect man beyond this that will never hurt you...though you will try to look for him...Ralph will break your 30 pact so don't bother making it! Lol! :-) Don't worry when your heart gets broken that first time, though it feels like it’s in a million pieces and will never be put back together again, it will, eventually...maybe not exactly the same but definitely stronger...bottom line you will survive!

About friendship...there are three types; those for life, those for a season, those for a specific purpose. Learn to distinguish early on in which group each friend belongs, that way they are less likely to hurt you! Joe will be your friend forever! (for his sins!) Be good to him and supportive of his plans and his life...a time will come when you will need to be the one to be there for him so be ready. Speaking of friends, as hard as it is for you to believe, you will be a bridesmaid at Ru's wedding and no, not to Enoch either! Yep, you will become friends in England. It’s hard to explain but when the time comes, don't be suspicious, her offer of help is genuine and she will be there for you in your lowest times, another you will eventually count as a friend for life :-) When it comes to church folk, I must warn you, on the tin it says that church is a second family when you join, a home away from home, if you will... that is more the spirit of the idea. However in reality church is a hospital full of messed up people trying to make it to heaven. So don't go in expecting everyone to treat you like family or be your best friend use the categories mention above and you will be fine. Also God made you the way you are warts and all so if anyone tells you that you need to be someone different from who God made you to be, then run !! (God speaks to you to, cultivate your personal relationship with him and through that you will know who you were meant to be).

About England, go if you have to but if you can avoid having to go, stay close to home an study there instead. But if your choices are limited and you do have to go, do your 3years, get your degree and come home, it’s not a place for everyone and in hindsight it’s not a place for you...but if you don't do either of the above, then you will fall in love again, just be sure not to let anyone else's opinion or thoughts on your choice influence your decision or you will end up being in England wondering what you are doing there alone !...Take control of your life, you are wise beyond your years and able to think for yourself and make your own decisions, trust your instincts.

All in all we made a whole bunch of mistakes (all those I warned you not to) and we still survived! We are stronger in that God found us again and restored us so there is hope, we forgave the hurts, forgot the wrongs and tried to make right the wrongs...we do OK so don't be afraid of tomorrow, be true to yourself, honest with yourself and allow yourself to live happy, don't let people or things make you live a defeated life because there is so much strength within you, you don't have to 'put up with it' !

Enough of my babbling! Whatever you do live your life without fear, do the right thing, live without regret and love with every fibre in your being! Remember that your calling is to love / show love through all you do so start young trying to bring people love and kindness and joy wherever you can and God will be glorified through you :-)

I love you and wish I could be there with you to navigate through the tough decisions and hard choices, I would have told you to hold onto everything you were given, even at the wrong time, God can make things work out for good...Two wrongs don't make a right. Fear cannot be a driving force in your life and you shouldn't make decisions based on it .Never lose your individuality and personality, thats what makes you who you are... and remember... Be creative!

I love you and will be celebrating our 29th year next week, taking to heart some of the advice on here that I am yet to actually put into practice! :-)

 Remember,  you’re not an ostrich! 

Love always,


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