About three years ago I ran over and killed our silver tabby on the drive way. To make matters worse, my two children were in the car at the time, so I am sure you can imagine the scene. Let me just say that it was horrible watching my two boys confronting death (albeit a pet) in a most violent manner for the first time. Needless to say, I felt dreadful and have since been labelled a 'cat killer'. That was when I decided it would be good to get another kitten...one that was placid, gentle and loved indoors!
And so my research began. After speaking to many cat lovers, pet shops and of course consulting the trusty Google Guru, I decided upon a Ragdoll. According to 'those in the know', Ragdolls are intelligent, floppy, love affection and are happy to be indoor cats (I didn't want another escape artist!)...so off we went to purchase our new pet.
I let my youngest son Jonathan choose her. There were some beautiful kittens in this litter, but my son chose the one that looked like a pirate! A patch over her eye, a mix of white, ginger and black fur and an attitude to match. Admittedly she was a very pretty kitten...but let me say...she is not your typical Ragdoll!
Jonathan named her Rose after Rose Tyler from Doctor Who, and I have to say that she is aptly named. We have a cat who is blonde, feisty and at times outright crazy, with a dangerous sense for adventure outside the safe confines of our home.
Our Rose has very bad manners...she loves to spit and hiss, bearing her considerable fangs, flattening back her cute little cat ears and let fly with one of her paws, if she happens to be in a bad mood. So much for gentle!
When Rose is picked up for a cuddle there is not a floppy bone in her body! Instead, she barely tolerates the attempt by her humans to give her affection...she wriggles and squirms to get back down. She does like a pat...but only on her terms when she feels like it! Sounds almost human doesn't it? Or is that just me? :)
Our Rose loves to trip me over when I am in the kitchen just so that she can have the pleasure of punishing me when I tread on her!
Taking Rose to the Vet is a nightmare! I don't know how many times I have warned the Vet that she is like a wild, feral animal! Of course they look at me with disbelief as they peek through the cat carrier and see this gorgeous, furry cat with big blue eyes placidly sitting, waiting to be petted. Little do they know that this is just a ruse, a mean trick to lure them into striking distance like a tiger in the grass! But they learn...the hard way! Even I will not attempt to touch or cajole Rose when at the Vets. I value my skin way too much!
On the face of it she sounds positively dreadful, and at time she is! However, at other times she looks so sweet, curled up sleeping on the end of someone's bed as if she loves and trusts us...just don't try to lie down on your own bed...
We love our Rebel Rose...she makes our lives interesting and some families need a feisty member to keep them on their toes!
It's coming up to Valentine's Day and I thought that I would feature some wonderful products from some very talented Australian Etsy Artisans. I don't usually celebrate Valentine's Day because of so much media hype, not to mention the plethora of teddy bears sporting red hearts that stare at me from department store shelves. Not everyone is the white teddy type, and not every Valentine recipient is a teenage sweetheart at school. Some of us like to say, 'I love you' to wives, husbands, mothers, fathers, grandparents, friends and all sorts of people for who we are thankful and grateful to have in our lives.
I have made a Valentine soap which I must say smells divine and looks pretty good too! I call it...predictably...Valentine:) Click on the picture if you wish to take a closer look.
Perhaps you have someone special in your life who loves bracelets. I think that this bracelet by BlueRavenDesigns is lovely and very elegant. I purchased a pearl bracelet from this shop late last year and I love it!
This super cute ceramic planter says I love you in a unique and practical manner. I love this cat planter from MinkyMooCeramics and I'm sure you will too!
I love the work from the very talented Etsy Artisan at VoogsArt. These photomontages are absolutely beautiful and sure to please someone special this Valentine's Day. You don't even have to wait for your wonderful photo to arrive by mail. Download and then print however you wish! Perfect.
If you like fragrant soy candles then you can't go past the candles at InCandleEssence. Candles are a symbol for so much: romance, love, hope, joy and beauty. I love to burn candles, especially in the evening...I am sure there is someone you love who enjoys the light, the ambience and fragrance from a handcrafted candle.
One of my favourite Art shops on Etsy is called JustALittleWalk. What a lovely name and what a talented artist! I love this work and I think that this acrylic artwork speaks volumes for Valentine's Day. It is loving, gentle and so real.
My final choice is a beautiful cyrstal heart pendant made by ElandraDesigns. This is a lovely piece of jewellery and is perfect to give this Valentine's Day.
If you love handmade, and handcrafted with care, time and love...then pop into Etsy Australia and I know that you will find something special for your someone special this Valentine's Day!
I am the most fortunate mum in the world! I am the proud parent of a 16 year boy who is just fantastic, funny, kind, gentle, good-looking and smart...I don't sound biased do I? Of course not because it is all true!
Well the time has arrived in my life when Mr 16 year old is learning to drive! And...like most 16 year olds, he believes he is already a fantastic driver:) Of course fantastic 16 year old drivers are ready to tackle traffic, teeny weeny roundabouts and deceptive corners perfectly on their second lesson! Fantastic 16 year old drivers are ready to take on the entire trip from Sydney to Bathurst over the Blue Mountains on their third driving lesson! Don't you just love such confidence!?
Am I a nervous wreck?...Not yet!
As we set off to Bathurst on the weekend, Mr 16 year old proudly put his L Plates on the car, adjusted the mirrors, changed my seating and sat proudly behind the wheel of my little B Class Mercedes (at least it is made with an internal roll bar) I think to myself.
Off we go to get some petrol before the trip....driving carefully down the main street of Camden we come across our first roundabout..."Now keep your line and stay in your lane", I say calmly to my son as he promptly attempts to side swipe the white four wheel drive on the outside lane of the roundabout! Keeping inside one's lane really means...move as far over into the other lane as possible so that no one else can be on the roundabout at the same time as you! Thankfully the other driver saw those big yellow L Plates and took evasive action!
With my heart still thumping and many an apologetic smile to the afore mentioned driver we pulled into the servo for some fuel. Phew...first leg of the journey went well!
We drove out of Camden with no more hiccups and reached The Northern Road (which is roundabout heaven) ...things were going smoothly as Mr 16 year old cruised along at 80 kph and mostly kept inside his lane (he has a tendency to veer left) until the next roundabout..."remember to keep your line, slow down and think about where the car is going", I say....of course, slow down really means maintain my speed and slow down as I am going around the roundabout!
I gingerly look into the mirror in my sun visor to check for cars who needed to pull off the road as our car grandly took another wide roundabout turn! Needless to say...Mr 16 year old did improve, and, as this was only his second roundabout ever...he was doing just fine. At least he was doing better than me!
Our next hurdle was exiting The Northern Road and merging onto The Great Western Freeway heading towards the Blue Mountains...Think about this...80kph L Plate merging with 110kph traffic... so I calmly say, (well I think I spoke calmly)..."pull over and I will drive from here"...and surprisingly he did with no complaint!
After I navigated the drive over the Blue Mountains, I let my son drive from Lithgow to Bathurst, which went smoothly, until Kelso, which is on the outskirts of Bathurst. Here slow down for the red light was secret code for...maintain speed and brake just as I get to the red light!
Life with a 16 year old Learner driver is fun! I am constantly taken back to my teenage years and learning to drive with my Dad. It is lovely to marvel at the sheer enthusiasm my son has just to get behind the wheel and go for a drive.
I know that he will grow into a mature and sensible driver...and that by the time he gets his P Plates...he will not be like many other P- Platers on the road who believe that they are invincible...Is that just me living my life in fantasy mode? I hope not...
Share your experiences...I would love to read them!
I went to Canberra on the weekend for my niece's 18th Birthday and as luck would have it...the annual
Floriade flower exhibition was in its second week. I think the second week is the best time to see this impressive and colourful display of fields of flowers in every possible colour! The sun was shining, faces were smiling and the gentle fragrance of millions of Spring blooms filled the air. Music, food stalls and people, some almost as brightly dressed as the flowers, strolled around the gardens beside the graceful Lake Burleigh Griffon.
My youngest son, Jonathan, bravely tackled this very feminine outing:) I think he was mollified by his extremely unhealthy lunch, proudly devoured in 3 minutes flat! Luckily for his blood sugar levels and teeth, Floriade only comes once a year! These evil donut puff balls certainly put a smile on his face and a grimace on mine!
I never cease to be amazed at the amount of work that goes into a floral display that brings joy to so many people. Workers and gardeners prepare for this display through the Summer, Autumn and Winter before the next Spring, so that all the flowers time at the correct time and in the correct place. It is an amazing display of careful planning and respect for the beauty of nature. I appreciate the efforts of these gardeners who work tirelessly so that I, and many others can appreciate the "art" that is their work. For these gardens are a work of art...albeit short-lived...it is art non the less.
So I come home full of the fragrance of flowers, the colours of Spring and look at my bare patch of grass...and wish!
I will leave you with some more photos from a lovely weekend in our nation's capital!
As I sit writing this my very painful back is telling me that it hurts and is urging me not to move or bend or do anything!
In fact, my brain is telling me that my pain is in my back, and is cleverly putting into place protective measures like holding myself stiffly, moving with caution and pulling in all my supporting muscles to protect my back. Little does my brain know that its protective measures are doing more harm than good! Bad back...means "keep moving"!
Even though I keep telling my brain that the pain it is feeling is not nearly as bad as it thinks...I still can't seem to break through the brain pain barrier! There is currently a lot of research into pain and specifically chronic pain and how our brains can be our worst enemy (or best friend) in the fight against pain. I found this very humorous and informative talk by Lorrimer Moseley to be extremely helpful in dealing with, and understanding the pain in my back.
I know it will get better, and I know that my brain is reacting to an injury memory of many years ago.
I think that if you have had back pain you will know what I mean when I say that it is extremely painful! Sort of like a knife sawing through your nerves. Not only is it painful, but there are things that you want to do that the pain in your back won't let you do...simple daily chores, going to work, and getting outdoors. So the physical pain changes your mood because not only are you in pain, you are feeling frustrated by limited movement and jobs not done. Pain is more than the feeling...it effects your entire outlook on the world around you...your 'pain brain' limits you physically, emotionally and socially.
So why am I writing this? Simply because I do not want my 'pain brain' to prevent me from doing what needs to be done. Nor do I want to give in to pain that will get better with time...and I want to share with you just a little snippet about understanding why we feel pain. I think it is good to understand why we feel pain the way we do...It may not alleviate it..but at least we can understand it!
My final words to you...Keep moving and smiling! It actually does help!
Are You confused about what is a Healthy Way of Eating? It seems that today there is so much information about food...but so much confusion!
Hi! Welcome to my Soapy Conversations about Soap and AllSorts of other Topics! I live in NSW Australia and I am a mother of five, Grandmother of Five and I sponsor seven children through Compassion Australia. I love making soap, reading, teaching English, and being an Advocate for children and women living in poverty.
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