My main reason for this post is that I've been looking at the Plaiades recently. One of my starting points as a child so one to go back to with proper kit. I took this (admittedly poor) picture but as my camera only has a maximum of a 1 second exposure it's not great. Anyways there it is on the left. I'm unsure whether or not the blue tint is the reflection of the gas cloud they're passing through or my my movement! I will try to get a better shot and post it.
For Christmas I was lucky enough to get a 3X barlow lens (a barlow increases the magnification of your current eyepieces and is commonly found in sized 2X, 3X & 4X). My first attempt with it was at my highest possible magnification I.E. my 10mm eyepiece and the barlow lens which gave me a total magnification of 150X. I tried the moon but at such high magnification it moved to fast, so I tried Jupiter but struggled to focus on it properly and then last night I got my first ever glimpse of the Orion Nebula. At the same magnification I could see all the main stars in the trapezium and it will be an area of the sky I'll revisit over the next few months. However judging by attempt at Pleiades above I'll leave the shots of the Nebula to MJ!!