Friday, April 30, 2010

Kero's korner: cars, tags and more (LBE)

Hi humans, it's Kero here.

I've had quite an eventful week, and you'll be pleased to hear that my good pal, Iggy, has very kindly sorted out some photos for me to show you. Thank you very much, Iggy! There will be extra licks, sniffs, and tail wags for you this week! Oh, and hugs from Mami too.

Not all of them are from this week though, a couple of them are from before, but Mami hadn't gotten them on to the PC and sent to Iggy in time for last week's post. So, I will post them today.

These first two are from when Mami, Dadi and I went to spend a couple of days at our flat a couple of weeks ago. Firstly, me looking out of the car window.



And this one looks like I'm sniffing the seat, but I was nudging Dadi in the back to ask him if we were there yet, because at this point I wasn't too sure where we were going, and I couldn't reach to nudge anyone else. I was strapped in, you see? The humans have a weird clip thing they use to atatch my harness to the seatbelt. It actually belongs to the car harness I was given - which Willow now has, because it fits her better - but works fine with any harness, so they use it on my ordinary walkies harness. Anyway, here's the photo.



Now, here are some taken last week in the garden at Willow and Mamgu's house.

Me heading out in to the garden...



Just me in the garden...



And me on Mamgu's swingseat...



(I think that last one is Iggy's favourite of the ones shown so far).

My birthday is coming up next month. It's not until nearly the end of the month (it's May 23rd), but Mamgu let me have my birthday presents from her early, and here they are:



Mami says Mamgu gave me the presents early because of the fact I was a good boy about my old toys. You see, I let Willow keep lots of my old toys at her house. I did bring some back with me, but I didn't make a fuss when I realised Willow was keeping some of my toys. So, because of that, Mamgu gave me my birthday presents early.

So, on to this week...

The weekend went basically how most weekends have been going lately: walkies with Willow, Wayne and Mami, Mami disappearing off to that "club" place on Sunday, etc. Although, it was a bit weird as from that point. First of all, it was only Wayne who stayed with me and Willow on Sunday afternoon. Not that we minded, since he stayed downstairs watching TV with us, and took us out loads of times. Also, Wayne plays well with us.

On Monday though Mami, Mamgu and Dadci packed the rest of our stuff in to Mamgu's and Dadci's cars, and I was told to get in to Mamgu's car (where the strap is). I got in, and Mami strapped me in, then Mamgu and Mami got in the car, and we drove off. I was confused, and kept asking what was going on. Mami kept telling me it was OK, and we were just going home, but I didn't understand what she meant, because I thought we were going to stay at Willow's house. But then I saw the flat come in to view, and I figured out what she was talking about. Of course! The flat! That had to be what she was talking about!

We all arrived at the flat about the same time, and Mami kept me on my lead while everyone else brought our stuff in. I had a good look around, and most of my stuff was there, but some of it seemed to be missing. I found it next day though, and Dadi found where my other bed was hiding. It was in a bag. I don't know how that happened. I was SO happy when he pulled it out and put it back where my bed has always been. I wagged my tail, did laps around the flat, rolled all over the bed and sofa, then sat on my bed giving Dadi the, "it's mine... Don't touch!" look. He got the message, and went up town to run some errands for Mami.

Do you know what Mami did when he left? She put me in the bath! I HATE the bath! I don't do water, and she bathed me! Don't worry though, I got her good and wet for it. When that bath was over, she was wetter than me. That'll teach her! It was her fault. We weren't doing too badly, but then she tried using the shower thing that atatches to the bath, and I'm scared of it. She did stop and use the jug method instead when she realised I was so scared of the shower thing, but by then she - and the entire bathroom - were soaked.

When I was dried off a bit, Mami took a couple of photos of me. Here they are:





This one's Iggy's favourite of the bunch.



Dadi came home from town with a new tag for me. Here's a photo:



The humans agreed to keep my other one with Mamgu's phone number on it on my collar too. For one thing, it's an extra safety procaution. For another thing, Mamgu is my secondary contact address and number on my official papers for my microchip anyway. Anyway, the round tag is my new one (my phone number is on the other side to my name). The one shaped like a dog's head is the one with Mamgu's number on (again, it has my name on one side, the number on the other). And the square tag is the one that tells anyone who picks me up that I have a microchip. Mami and Dadi figure that between the three tags, I should be returned to them quickly if I get lost. And, since I'm microchipped, if I lose my tags, there's that too.

Anyway, Tuesday afternoon I saw the girls, and we all raced around the garden together, which was fun. Poppy tried to get me to play ball with her, but I wasn't interested. Actually, it was mostly me and Poppy who ran around the garden, because Daisy was more interested in getting attention and treats from the humans. She's good at it too, and earns Poppy and me treats with it. Good girl, Daisy!

Most of the rest of Tuesday, and most of Wednesday, I didn't do much. Mami and I went for walkies, and we also spent lots of time in the garden, since it was nice weather, and Mami brought herself a swing seat like Mamgu has. But yesterday a man came early in the morning. He smelled like Jack Russel Terrier, and let me sniff him. He stopped what he was doing to pet me too. Good human! I don't know exactly what he was doing, but he was playing with the box that makes the internet work, and Mami and Dadi seemed pleased with whatever he did.

After he went, Mami and I went for our walkies, then Mamgu brought our box that makes lots of things work on the TV down. And then Mami and Dadi spent lots of time getting caught up on stuff on the internet, while I chewed on some rawhide. Nothing exciting has happened yet today. Oh, although, I did see Poppy and Daisy earlier.

Licks and sniffs,
Kero

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Is it working now?

Sorry I haven't been around over the past couple of days. We had an internet issue. Remember I said that the phone and internet got sorted out last Thursday at the flat? Well, we came down here Monday, plugged in the computers, and... Nothing! Our old router is dead. No problem though, they gave us a new one when we signed up, so we decided to just plug that one in... Still nothing! So, I called them up. They claimed it was a wire thing on our end, and they wanted us to unscrew the screws on the box thing where the phone and internet wire plugs in to the wall. I said there was no way we were doing that. Neither of us is qualifyed to do something like that. Besides, it's their job to do stuff like that, not ours. Also, since the phone worked fine, I was sure it was a problem on their end. Especially since, I could find the wireless connection with my laptop - which has a wireless modem, and can use either cable type connections or wireless ones - but couldn't make it access the internet using the connection. Anyway, to cut a long story short, they couldn't send anyone out until today (Thursday) and when they guy came, he immediately said it was their end. Then he went away for a while to do something with their wiring, and by the time he came back the internet was working. I had wondered if the lack of wireless access was something in the settings I'd done wrong, but he said I'd set it up perfectly (both the router and the setup on my laptop) but that if the broadband bit wasn't working their end - which it wasn't, hence lack of internet - then you can't actually use the wireless connection. So, as I said, it was their fault not mine.

Anyway, they sorted the internet out this morning, and I've just spent most of the day getting caught up with the blogs I follow, and catching up on e-mails. I still haven't gotten to Dad's forum yet though, so I better go and do that. I'll catch you up on anything of interest on Saturday, since tomorrow is Kero's post day.

Enjoy whatever's left of your day, and stay safe! :)

Tori

P.S. A post about birthdays I missed, and my craft update - if you can call it that - are below this post, if you're interested in checking them out.

Catching up on missed birthdays

Happy birthday to everyone who I missed saying happy birthday to. For example:

Our friend, and my honorary sister's fiance, Adrian's birthday was on March 20th.
Dylan (Adrian's son) turned 2 on April 8th.
Mam's friend Jane's Grandaughter, Chelsea, had her birthday on April 9th.
My friend Corrine had her birthday on April 10th.
Our friend Kirstie's son, Lucas, turned 4 on April 12th.
Wifey's daughter, Emerson, also had her birthday on April 12th.
Our friend Jackie had her birthday on April 26th.
On April 27th it was ChicagoLady's birthdayAnd
, Louise (Louise is baby Emma-Jane's Mami) had her birthday on April 27th too.

If I missed your birthday too, then a belated happy birthday to you!

Tori

April 2010 craft update

There's not much to tell. With packing up stuff, and then moving back to the flat, I haven't done a lot of knitting, or any other type of craft. I really have to get my backside in gear and get these projects finished!

Tori

Monday, April 26, 2010

The voice from nowhere

The other day, I was having a shower, and I swear I heard someone say, "hurry up! I need a pee!"

So, I hurried up. But, the strange thing is, when I went out of the bathroom, the only living being around was Willow. Everyone else - even Kero - was upstairs. And all of them were asleep.


On seeing me come out of the bathroom, Willow began her, "let me out, I have to pee," dance (I know, because she's not careful who she steps on, or what she runs in to, and you tend to notice a labrador slamming in to your leg, and stepping on your foot). So I let her out.

Like I said though, nobody else was even awake.


I came to the conclusion that there were only three possible explanations for this:

1. Willow has learned to talk, or communicate telepathically, and told me she had to pee.

2. I subconciously knew Willow had to pee, and didn't hear a voice at all. It was my own thoughts, and I was just telling myself what Willow was thinking while waiting for me.

3. It's finally happened... I've lost the plot!


I'd like to say it was one of the first two, but I'm afraid the third one is much more likely.

What do you think?

Tori

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Welsh Weyr Gaming Club

At the time this is being published, I wont be here. Instead, I will be at the gaming club that my Dad runs, which I've mentioned several times in the past, in a building that's about a ten minute drive from my parents' place, and about a 35 minute drive from our flat.

My Dad has been running this club for about ten or so years now. It doesn't have a lot of members compared to many clubs. I mean, there are more than a dozen of us (Dad, Julian, Gareth, Ian, Ryan, Chris, Lee, Christian, Phil R, Phil G, Budgie, Jason, Daniel, Tim, Tom, Dave P, Drew, Dave, Carl, Kelly and I) but only four of us are there just about every week (Dad, Julian, Kelly and I) and only one other person shows up on a semi regular basis (Gareth). Carl has a great excuse, because he lives up in the North of England, where as we're in South Wales. Plus, Carl makes a huge effort when he is coming to visit, and is involved in everything he can possibly fit in to do with the club while he's visiting. The others? Well, they show up when they feel like it. The trouble is, family commitments started happening, and with how the economy is these days people are working more to make ends meet, then still not having much spare money for things like gaming clubs.

And what do we do at the gaming club?

We play figure games, like:

Bloodbowl
Classic BattleTech
Flames Of War
Horde
Monsterpocalypse
Warhammer 40K
Warhammer Fantasy
Warmachine

And others that I don't know the names of.

Welsh Weyr Gaming Club is also our roleplaying group. We try out most types of roleplaying, but currently being played, or planning to be played, are the following systems:

Call Of Cthulhu
Dungeons And Dragons
Mage The Awakening
Shadowrun
Star Wars
World Of Darkness

We also recently abandoned Warhammer Fantasy Roleplaying, due to lack of enjoyment and enthusiasm.

Club members also play trading card games, board games, etc, and from time to time movies and books are discussed and reviewed during sessions.

It's a nice little club. It's just a shame that so many of the members show up so rarely.

By the way, there is a forum here, though you wouldn't be able to read much of it without joining the forum. Note: membership to the forum doesn't automatically give you membership to the club, because forum members can come from all over the world, but would find it difficult to make it for even the odd session. Anyone is welcome to join the forum though.

Until very recently, there were a couple of days each week set aside for the club. First it was roleplaying on Mondays, and figure gaming on Saturdays. Then it was roleplaying on Fridays, and figure gaming Saturdays. Then it became roleplaying on Fridays, and figure gaming on Sundays. And, more recently, it was roleplaying on Saturdays, and figure gaming on Sundays. But we had a sort of meeting last Sunday - those of us who were there - and decided that we didn't need the extra days, so figure gaming and roleplaying will now be happening on Sundays. Officially it's figure gaming in the afternoon, roleplaying in the evening. But if someone can only make it in the evening and only wants figure gaming, or someone can only make it in the afternoon, and only wants roleplaying, then that can - in theory - be changed to suit whoever happens to be there. The idea being that it frees up Saturdays for either other activities, or extra time for prep work for games of whatever. Plus, it means we will definately have something happening at club, and wont be paying to have the whole day at the place it's run at for everyone to be done with their figure gaming after a couple of hours, then just go home.

Anyway, I just thought I'd talk a bit about the club, especially with the new changes happening.

Hope you're enjoying your weekend.

Tori

Saturday, April 24, 2010

A sunny Saturday afternoon's scribbles

The sun is still shining here. It's great, because it's lovely and sunny, but only warm, not hot. So you can enjoy the nice weather without sweating like a pig. And yet, it's just warm enough so you don't need jumpers and coats, and you can keep the windows and back door - or, both doors, if you want - open to let some fresh aire in. Perfect Spring weather!

***

We had the phone and internet set up again at the flat Thursday. Well, sort of, since they couldn't finish the set up because I hadn't received my username and password information. It's OK though, they e-mailed it to me Thursday night. As it happens, I know how to sort it, and as it happens, I'm still at my parents' house, which means I still have internet access. But they didn't know that. So, where's the logic in e-mailing me the details to get online? Didn't it occur to them that there may be a possibility that I have no internet access at the moment? I mean, they don't know about me being at my parents' place using Dad's internet connection. Just because I have another e-mail address doesn't mean I can get online to access it. I wish these people would use a bit of common sense. I mean, it wouldn't have been so bad if they sent it to my mobile via text message or something. Mind you, e-mailing it to my other address isn't as bad as what I discovered they'd done this morning. Figured it out? No, well I'll tell you... They only e-mailed the information to the e-mail address I "had to" set up with them. You know? The one I can't access without that information, since part of it is my password for the account.


******

We moved our medical records up to the surgery near my parents' place, because it's just across the road from their house, so it was easier - especially with us intending to stay here - and now we need to move them back. So we have "new or returning patient" appointments with our own doctor on Tuesday afternoon. It's basically going to be a case of, "what are you taking this for?" "Are there any issues you haven't mentioned to a doctor and want to?" and so on. The second one I understand, but the first one irritates me, because if they just took a few moments to read your notes then they could tell why you were taking whatever you're taking. Or maybe it's a test? maybe they're really asking if you know why you're taking the stuff? Yeah, that'll be it... It's a test!

And, speaking of medical stuff:

I finally got an appointment through to see Eirona again. They don't know why I was missed... I was meant to be seen just before Christmas. I now have an appointment for May 6th.

We also had our dentist appointments come through the other day... May 5th. That's going to be a busy week. Sky is coming to sort our Sky boxes on the Monday (May 3rd). May 4th is Kero's grooming appointment. May 5th is the dentist. And May 6th is my hospital appointment.

******

Apart from things that have to be packed up last minute, everything is not only packed up, but has been taken down the flat. The rest of it will be going with us on Monday. Then I have the not-so-fun task of unpacking everything, and finding places for it again. *Groans*

******

Kero is still biting at himself. I wish he'd quit it. I swear I'm spending more time telling him to stop doing that than I am doing anything else. I know I spend more of the night telling him to, "quit that!" than I do sleeping... Despite "trying" to sleep from around 9:00 pm, and not giving up on the idea of sleep until around 6:00 am. I really hope this is just stress from all the stuff getting packed, and that he stops it after I start getting things unpacked, and after he sees that nobody is going anywhere without him. Although, if I'm honest, I'm hoping he stops it sooner, before he either does worse damage to himself, or it becomes too much of a habit for him to be able to stop.

******

OK, I will let this do for today. I have a few things I want to get done... Including setting up posts for tomorrow and Monday. Tomorrow I wont have time to post, and Monday... Well, I'm setting one up for Monday in case it takes us longer than hoped to get the internet set up... Got to find the router's disk before I can even start, after all.


Hope you enjoy your weekend! :)

Tori

P.S. There's a new book review posted below this post if you haven't seen it yet. If you're not interested, that's fine, but I know several of my bloggy readers enjoy book reviews, so I wanted to make sure those of you who do enjoy reviews don't miss it.

Man And Boy

By Tony Parsons

"A fabulously engaging and exciting novel about a man who has to learn about life and love the hard way.

Harry Silver has it all. A successful job in TV, a gorgeous wife, a lovely child. And in one moment of madness, he chucks it all away.

Man and Boy is the story of how he comes to terms with his life and achieves a degree of self-respect, bringing up his son alone and, gradually, learning what words like love and family really mean."

(Above taken from here).

I really enjoyed this book. As it says on the page linked to above, "it is very well written, pacy, funny, and heart-breakingly moving."

Tori

Friday, April 23, 2010

Kero's infliction (AED)

This is what Kero has done to himself with pulling his fur out.

One photo is one of his sides, the other is the other side.




Tori

Kero's korner: poor puppy (AED)

Hi humans, it's Kero here.

The weather is still staying nice, but I'm not enjoying it as much as I should be - despite all the great walkies, and all the times spent in the garden with Mami and Mamgu - because I've not been feeling 100% this past week. Mami thinks it's a stress thing, since I do get stressed easily. Anyway, I've been pulling my fur out in clumps until my skin is showing and really sore, and I even made my side bleed the other day. Mami's been putting cream on it. I hate when she does that... Cream is cold, and wet, and stings! Mami says if I'd quit biting at myself then she'd quit putting cream on, but I just can't help it! I try to stop, but I just can't stop myself! Mamgu has special doggy shampoo, so Mami says she's going to bath me with it to relieve the itching. She also says she's going to keep my groomer appointment so I get another bath in a couple of weeks, and so the groomer can cut my fur short. She says if I still don't stop biting at myself after that then it's back to the vet for me. I hope that doesn't happen... I hate vets even more than I hate that cream! But Mami says it is possible that rather than stress it's actually just the common Westie health problem... Skin problems. Apparently, us West Highland White Terriers are prone to skin problems. The vet did actually tell Mami recently that he was surprised I didn't have skin problems yet. Both Mami and I are hoping it's not that though, because it would mean regular treatments - probably daily - with creams, ointments and such for the rest of my life. And I REALLY don't like that idea!

Mami says she's going to get our lunchtime stuff sorted now, so I'll let this do for this week.

Licks and sniffs,
Kero

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Earth day 2010

Today is Earth day. Did anyone remember? Not that it matters. No, I don't mean Earth day doesn't matter. I mean that it doesn't matter if you remember the date, because - as I said last year - you shouldn't only be thinking about what you can do for the planet on just this one day. Avoiding littering for just this one day, recycling for just this one day, walking instead of driving for this one day, turning off the lights - or electrical gadgets - when you're not using them for just this one day, and using environmentally friendly items for just this one day... That doesn't make much difference. But making a habit of doing just some of those things every day of the year... Now, that can make a huge difference!

Happy Earth day, everyone! And remember... If you look after the planet, the planet will look after you!

Tori

Life in the wizarding world

I can't find it now, and the link I had doesn't work, but I did a quiz about my life in the wizarding world, and it said that I would be a defence against the dark arts teacher, I'd marry a squib, and my children would be squibs. That's not how I imagine my life in the wizarding world at all though. This is more what I had in mind:

When I was at Hogwarts, I was in Ravenclaw, and good friends with Luna Lovegood and Ginny Weasley, who were a year ahead of me in school (if I have the years worked out right). After leaving Hogwarts, Luna and I teamed up to create a new version of the Quibbler, which was even better, and more exciting than the original version her father had been doing. I married a muggleborn who was a farmer's son, and we brought a farm near to where the Lovegoods and Weasleys live. As for our children? They all went to Hogwarts, where they were friends with the Weasley and Potter children, and did very well in their lessons.

What would your life be like in the wizarding world?

Tori

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Baby toys, Boyzone tributes, and babbling

I didn't get to see baby Emma-Jane, because Mam just popped in to fetch something of hers that Jane (baby's Nan) had, and I asked her to give Louise (baby's Mami) the rattle I'd brought. But, what I did get was the pleasure of being the first person to buy little Emma-Jane a toy. She has some toys passed down to her from previous babies, but the first toy brought for her was the rattle I got her. It has a lion head on it, and some bits that you can twist in different ways. I never thought to get a picture, so I can't show you what it looks like. For some reason I'm really pleased about being the first to buy her a toy though. I only brought the rattle because I wanted to buy her a present, and I figured she probably had tons of clothes (I was right). I know she's too young for rattles yet, but she'll be old enough soon, and then she can play with the lion rattle I got for her. I bet those of you who know me well aren't surprised it's a lion one, are you? LOL!

Anyway...

I got basically everything of mine all packed up last night, and Kelly's sorting his stuff tomorrow. Argh! Last minute packers! How can you pack properly when you pack at the last minute? Well, I suppose in this case it doesn't matter, since - as Iggy pointed out - if stuff gets forgotten it's no big deal. But still... OK, I'll quit! But I can't help being irritated when people wont do things until the last minute. Ever heard of being prepared?

I also got that other battle report written up last night, and got it published on my Dad's forum too. So, all write ups and battle reports I'm responsible for are now up to date, posted in their correct sections on the gaming club's forum, etc. I don't plan to post them on my blog though. Well, not unless anyone requests that they are posted on here.

As for today...

I did some laundry, walked the dogs with Wayne, called and texted a few friends, and sorted through some old paperwork (with the help of Mam) so as to shred no longer needed documents. Then I watched the tribute to Stephen Gately that my Mam taped for me a couple of weeks back. It was on TV one Sunday - I don't remember which Sunday, but a couple of weeks back - and I was at club, so I couldn't watch it. Mam taped it for me on the Sky box, and I never got around to watching it. I figured it was about time I did, so I watched it today. Then I watched the "Boyzone: Life After Stephen" show that she had also taped for me. They were both really good. But I've been a Boyzone fan since they first started out - when I was just a kid - so of course I'm going to say that!

I finished watching the shows just before dinner time. Now it's a little after 6:00 pm, and I've just finished reading through all the forum and blog posts for the day, which is good, because I think the washing machine is finished, and I need to finish washing these clothes.

Hope you're having a good day, that's as nice - weather wise, and in other ways - as mine! :)

Tori

Quiz: What Latin Phrase Is Your Motto?

The words of wisdom you live by:
Maxima debetur puero reverentia. - "We owe the greatest respect to a child."

What Latin phrase is your motto?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

A welcome, an apology, and some babbling

Welcome to my blog, Rainey! :)

Sorry I didn't get around the blogs yesterday (Monday). I was busy. First I helped Mam wash the cars. Well, OK, I admit it... She did the work, I was just there to fetch things, hold things, etc. Anyway, after that I helped her water the plants that are in the front garden. Then I went to town with her. I should have been walking the dogs with Wayne, but Mam wanted to go to town, and wanted company, so Kelly said he'd take Kero for me. We ended up going to the flat for a bit to make room in the spare room (currently full of stuff needing to be sorted) for an armchair, because Nan was being given Laura's Grandad's old chair, so she was giving us her armchair. Laura's Grandad's chair is one of those recliner chairs, so she was all excited about getting it. Mam says she looks really comfy in it. Anyway, we went to make room for the chair, and Eleri offered us up for a cuppa. I took some juice with me though, because Eleri never has anything but tea or coffee in the house, and I don't drink normal tea now, and have never drank coffee. So, we went up there for a while, then we came back to the house. Nan was cooking dinner by this point, so I didn't want to get in to anything and have to be pulled away from it for dinner. Then, after dinner, I had to do the write ups for the roleplaying we did on the weekend. I also did one of the battle reports from the figure gaming, but I haven't done the other yet. I had to stop, because I was getting tired. I did read a few posts, but I couldn't be bothered to sign in to Blogger and comment.

It took me until this afternoon to get back on the laptop though, because I was helping my Mam with a few things again. Also, the person I waited all day last Monday for a phone call from FINALLY called me back. Apparently he was really busy, then had a couple of days off because he was sick. Anyway, it's all sorted now. I will tell you about it, but not today, because I have a few things I want/need to get done. There are some things, for example, that came up to my parents' house with us, and are still not packed back up to take back down the flat. And we're going back down there first thing next Monday morning. We're not going before, because we wanted the phone line and internet put back in first, and we decided to stay up here for this weekend because of the gaming club. Mam is taking all but what we absolutely need to have here down the flat on Friday for us, so it's all got to be packed up before then. Most of it is done, but there are a few bits to do still, and I want to get them done so as to have time to notice any things I forgot to pack up. I don't like packing at the last minute... So easy to forget things that way! Also, I still have to write the battle report for the other figure game I played on Sunday. And, I haven't checked on posts on my Dad's forum yet, either! So, I better get on with it, you think?

Hope you're having a great day! :)

Tori

Monday, April 19, 2010

Going back

You may remember that when I wrote my post back in December about going back home, I wouldn't give reasons for my decision. It doesn't matter if you don't, because I'm only mentioning it for the benifit of those who do remember, and to say that this post will be the same. I don't want to discuss reasons for the decision, but in order for me to be sharing most parts of my life with my bloggy readers, I do need to say that it's happening. And it's happening because we all agreed that what we thought would be best for everyone, wasn't the best option for everyone after all.

As for what "it" is... Well, "it" refers to us going back to live at the flat permanently.

The phone and internet are both being put back on again on Thursday (April 22nd). Well, all being well, anyway. So, we'll be down the flat again from the start of the following week.

Tori

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Rest In Peace

There was something else I planned to post today, but this post is more important, so the other post can wait until tomorrow. Besides, because of a certain funeral happening today, it seems a sort of appropriate day to be posting this, if you know what I mean.

A few weeks ago the Grandad of a long time family friend passed away. I wasn't able to attend the funeral, but my sympathies were with Laura and her family that day. As they still are now, as she and her family grieve for him.

Within a week of his funeral, our dear friend Iggy lost his Step-Grandmother. Again, my sympathies are with him and his family. Today especially, but also in the days, weeks, and months to come.

And then, yesterday (Saturday) afternoon, a family friend also lost his brief battle with cancer. His name was Andy, and our sympathies are with his wife, Linda, and the rest of the family at this sad time.

Rest in peace all of those who have recently passed on.

And to those left behind... Please know that you are in my thoughts, and that my deepest sympathies and condolences are with you and your family at this sad time in your lives.

I don't know what comes next. Perhaps, as some believe, loved ones await us in Heaven, or some other similar paradise. Perhaps, as others believe, they do not. I know not which is true. I do, however, know one thing, and that is that those who we have loved and lost are never truely gone. Not as long as they live on in our memories and our hearts.

Hold on to those fond memories, and when you remember those who have passed on, remember them with joy, not with sadness, for that - I'm sure - is what they would want. It was my Grandad Sid's last request, anyway. He left a poem he had written, which was read at his funeral, and it told those he had left behind to remember him, but not to be sad for him. He believed he was going to be with his beloved Norma, and I believe he was right. Whether it was in paradise, or in another life, or whatever, I have no idea. But that doesn't matter. The point is, that he told us in his own words to try to remember the happy times more than the sad times. And so, that is my message to you today. Grieve for those you have loved and lost, but don't dwell on the sad memories when there are so many happy memories to think of instead.

Tori

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Babbling 'bout blood (PTMI)

My gynaecologist appointment was Thursday afternoon. It was meant to have been at 3:45 pm, but it was actually about 5:15 pm when we were seen. They did say there would be a bit of a delay when we got there, but seriously, that's more than a "bit" isn't it? 20 to 30 minutes... Yeah, I'll accept that as a "bit" of a delay. But any more than that is ridiculous!

Anyway, this is the cue for anyone not interested in... Erm... Female issues, to stop reading, and to go read other blogs. Oh, but if you do that... Please come back tomorrow! Please?

Right, well, as most of you know from recent posts, my female problems are suspected to be the cause for my anemia. The reason this is suspected is because I have such a bad time. I'm one of those people who considers herself lucky to get more than a week in the month without bleeding. This is, as you can imagine, tiring on the body. Not to mention the fact that it makes my goal of becoming a mother rather difficult. So, I went to see the gynaecologist to try and sort that out.

There are a couple of ways that it can be done. Tablets, the pill in some form, a coil, or removal of those parts causing the problem. Well, that last one isn't an option at all. If I had a child, sure! I mean, if I had a child they'd be welcome to it. But since I'm only 25, and since I haven't had any luck on the baby front, then there's no way I'm going to go for that option. Which leaves us with just the first three ways to try and sort it.

The pill in some form, and the coil, would both delay the baby thing. Only for a while, since they don't advise either be used for more than a year or so for what I would use it for. But, they would still delay it. Needless to say, I'm not enthusiastic about those ideas. Although, they would be more preferable than the surgical option, since at least they wouldn't stamp out the possibility of motherhood. And it is possible to conceive while using the coil, and while on the pill. It's just less likely to happen. And, I suppose I am only 25, so waiting for a couple more years wouldn't be the end of the world.

We're going with the tablets option for now though, because they shouldn't affect my chances of conception. I'm also going for a scan to make sure it is just a general things are just a bit messed up (meaning hormones) rather than something else being wrong.

I swear I'm destined to spend my life in hospital! I get rid of one doctor, and I'm seeing another! :(

Tori

Friday, April 16, 2010

Caught up

I've caught up on comments and blog posts. So if you want to see what I said about what you said, then scroll back and check the comments section of the posts from the past week. Same goes for comments on posts on your own blogs.
If I didn't comment on a post you left, it's nothing personal. It just means I had nothing to say.

Hope you're enjoying your day. It's another beautiful one here today! :)

Tori

Kero's korner: sunshine and sleepovers

Hi humans! It's Kero here!

We have been having BEAUTIFUL weather lately! The sun has been shining, and it's been nice and warm. But not hot, just warm. Just right for me and Mami to be able to enjoy it. And we have been enjoying it. We've spent a lot of time sitting out in the garden - in my case also doing a lot of sniffing - and going for walkies. Nothing beats a lot of outside time on days like this! Ah, heaven!

And I saw Daisy and Poppy again this week. Mami, Dadi and I went for a sleepover at the flat, so I said, "hi," to the girls a few times while we were there. I love sleepovers, especially when they mean I get to see my girlfriends!

This will have to do for this week, because Mami just mentioned the idea of going in the garden, and I like that idea. After all, Willow and I need to make sure nobody snuck in the garden over night.

Licks and sniffs,
Kero

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Open Season 2

"After falling head over hooves in love with Giselle, Elliot's road to the altar takes a slight detour when Mr. Weenie is kidnapped by a group of pampered pets determined to return him to his owners."

(Above taken from here).

This was the movie I watched with Kelly Thursday night. Yeah, it's no classic romantic movie, but we both enjoyed the first one, so we figured we'd borrow Mam's copy of the second one to watch. We both really enjoyed it. Kelly and Wayne - Wayne watched it on bank holiday Monday with Mam, Dad, Nan and Elizabeth - thought it wasn't as good as the first movie. I disagree. Mind you, we think the main reason I enjoyed this one more than the first one is that, the parts that made the first one more enjoyable to Kelly and Wayne than this one was, were all visual. They did agree that it was really good, but apparently the absence of things like the duck with the false teeth made it a bit less enjoyable to them (you have to have seen the first one to know exactly what I'm talking about). So, it was a great movie, but opinions are divided as to whether Open Season is better than Open Season 2, or whether it's actually the other way around. Of course, there's also the possibility they're both just as good as each other.

Tori

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

"Where is she then?"

On weekends my Dad likes to have a lie in. No problem, but my system doesn't seem to recognise the idea as being an option. Besides, my sleep pattern is usually screwed up anyway. Because of this, I usually get up early. So, my Dad asks me to grab Willow on my way downstairs, that way she doesn't wake him. No problem there either. I open the door, I call her name softly, and she gets up, shakes herself, and slowly plods out of the bedroom. She then has another good shake. After which she is ready to follow me downstairs. That's how it usually works on weekends. Except for this week. This week was different.


I opened the door, called Willow's name, and... Nothing!

So, I called her again... Nothing!


I called her again... Still nothing.

It was just starting to register with me that she wasn't going to come, and that there was a valid and good reason for it - if I could just remember what it was - when Dad woke up.

Dad: "Willow's not here."
Me: (sounding confused) "She isn't?"
Dad: "No."
Me: "Where is she?"
Dad: "With your Mum."
Me: (sounding more confused) "Huh?"
Dad: "You know? Mum, Wayne, Willow, flat!"

It was then that realisation finally dawned on me, and I realised that the real reason that Willow wasn't coming was because she wasn't there. Mam and Wayne were at the flat from Friday to Sunday, and they took Willow with them. I did know about this, but it seems I forgot.

Tori

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Stuff And Nonsense: A Book Of Children's Stories

"Stuff And Nonsense" is a book of short children's stories by various authors. Stories include:


"The Shepherdess And The Chimney Sweep" - a story about a figurine of a shepherdess who is in love with a figurine of a chimney sweep, but the shepherdess is promised to a goat man who is a carving on the door of a wardrobe. So, the shepherdess and the chimney sweep run away together.


"The Witch's Pumpkins" - a story about a witch who teaches a mean man a lesson. The man is one of those selfish people who think everyone is out to get what they have, and have no intension of letting them so much as look, let alone share it. Anyway, the man decides to plant some pumpkins in his garden, and a woman who is passing stops to talk to him, and admire his garden. He's extremely rude to her, and sends her on her way. So, she teaches him a lesson by tampering with the pumpkins by magic, and bringing them to life.

There were several others too. Like the one about the motorbike that's really a crocodile in disguise. And the one about the vaccume cleaner that's alive, and that gets carried away eating things. I forget the titles of those two stories though... Sorry!


Anyway, I think it's an excellent collection of short stories, and I really enjoyed it. It's a collection that - in my opinion - is great for both little kids and big kids alike.

Tori

Monday, April 12, 2010

A short summery of the past week (FD)

Last Tuesday I spent practically the entire day catching up on blogs, sorting stuff on my Dad's forum, and doing the write up for the other roleplaying game we played on the weekend. As well as gathering a few bits of information required to make a start on character backgrounds for my characters for various roleplaying campaigns we're playing, or planning to play.

Then, Wednesday, I spent the morning with Elizabeth, spent the afternoon napping, spent part of the evening with Mam, and spent the rest of it sorting e-mails, forum posts and blog posts.

On Thursday I took Kero for an earlier than usual walk, then Kelly and I went in to town for a few hours. We went round some shops, and had dinner out. Nothing fancy, but it made a nice change for it to just be the two of us going out for food. We were going to go to Swansea, but it was a warm day, and neither of us felt like sitting on a bus for that length of time on a day like that. Then I came home, called the doctor about my test results, went outside with the dogs for a bit, then took a nap. After which I had a sandwich, fiddled on the laptop for a little while, then watched TV with Kelly. I had a load of other things I'd planned to do, but I just couldn't get motivated to do them. So, I didn't do those things. There will be a review of the movie I watched with Kelly soon.

Friday was another beautiful day! Wayne and I walked the dogs, then I went to sit back outside in my thinking spot. I didn't get much thinking done though, because Wayne decided to come out and join me. So, as it turned out, I spent the morning sat on the swing seat - sometimes on my own, sometimes with one or the other of the dogs - while talking to Wayne. Then I put some laundry on, had lunch, went online for a bit, took a nap (sleep pattern's screwed up again, and the sudden increase in temperatures isn't helping) and I got up just in time for dinner. Dad cooked. He doesn't cook often. Not because he can't, because he's a great cook, he just doesn't bother. Mainly because he does the cleaning after everyone else has cooked, so he doesn't see why he should then also cook. But on Friday he did cook. He made a vegetable stir fry for himself, Nan and I. Kelly fixed himself food, because he wont eat things like that, and Mam and Wayne were having some mother son time down the flat. That's why Dad was only cooking for three of us. Anyway, after dinner I fed Kero (Willow was with Mam and Wayne), then I talked to Dad for a bit. After that I went around and made sure I was caught up on forum and blog posts. Then I read through a couple of things I needed to read ready for creating character backgrounds for my roleplaying characters. After that I had supper, listened to part of an audiobook I've been listening to a little each night, then I went to bed.

On Saturday it was another beautiful day. I woke up about 6:00 am, then sat outside with my cup of tea for about an hour and a half while Kero wandered around the garden. Then I came indoors for a couple of hours. After that, I fed Kero, then I went back outside for a while until it was time for Kero's walk. Kelly came for the walk with us. Once we were back I just went for a nap, since the combination of the warm weather and the 6:00 am wake up, after only falling asleep about 2:30 am, meant I was really tired and sleepy. I honestly don't remember what I did between when I got up from the nap and dinner time, but I know we had our usual roleplaying session in the evening. And, as usual, by the time roleplaying was over it was time for everyone to be going to bed.

Yesterday (Sunday) was another beautiful day! I spent most of the morning out in the back garden with Kero, and the rest of it walking him. I was meant to have spent the afternoon at gaming club, but with my once again messed up sleeping pattern, and the heat, I was just too tired. So, when Dad and Kelly left for club, I went to bed. Woke up about an hour later for a pee, went back to bed, and slept another two hours. And yet, I was still in bed by 11:00 pm. Unfortunately, I was then up by 4:00 am next morning. *Sigh*


As for today (Monday). Well, the sun was still shining, but this time I wasn't able to enjoy the day. Why? Because I made a call first thing in the morning, the person was meant to call me back, and after I spent the entire day waiting for the call... NOTHING! I'm rather annoyed about it actually. Mostly because the person didn't call back at all, but also partly because I was told it was important that I called, so I did. And I was then told I'd be called back right away, which I wasn't. If you can't call back right away, fine. But don't tell people you can if you can't... Or, if you don't intend to. Anyway, I did pop out to Asda for a bit with Mam, and I've just gotten back, but I waited until well after closing time for the office the person is from before going anywhere. The office closes about 5:00 pm, and I didn't leave the house until after 6:00 pm. And if they had tried to call while I was out then I'd have been told by either Nan, Kelly, or Wayne. All three of whom were here while I was out (and Kelly could have dealt with the call instead of me, anyway). So, what it all boils down to is that I spent the entire day doing pretty much sod all, and for what? For nothing, that's what!


Right, that's it, I've had it for the day. I've been up since 4:00 am, and I'm knackered, and going to bed! Before I go though... Sorry I've not been around the blogs, and sorry that I wont be around for a few days. I have posts set up for the next few days, and will catch up with comments - and, of course, with your blog posts - as soon as I can!


Enjoy whatever's left of your day, and stay safe! :)

Tori

Sunday, April 11, 2010

To The Hilt

By Dick Francis

"From the acclaimed master of mystery and suspense comes the story of a self-imposed outcast who must refresh his detection skills in order to save himself and his family."

"Alexander Kinloch lives in an unelectrified bothy in the Scottish mountains, supporting himself through his paintings. Al's keen visual sense allows him to draw the faces of the four thugs who beat him and tear apart his home in the opening chapter. "Where is it?" they demand, establishing the leitmotif of concealed objects that Francis weaves through the plot. Hard on the beating, Al must rush to London to comfort his mother in the aftermath of her husband's heart attack. Al learns that his stepfather's brewery is about to collapse because the finance director has absconded with millions of pounds. In desperation, the business affairs of the brewery are turned over to Al, though he pines for solitude, his easel and the mountains."

(Above taken from here).

This was a really great book! :)

Tori

Saturday, April 10, 2010

The Haunting in Connecticut

"The Haunting in Connecticut is a 2009 psychological supernatural horror film based on the allegedly true story of a paranormal event in Connecticut.

Set in 1987, the story centers on Matthew Campbell, who is being treated for Hodgkins lymphoma in a hospital in Upstate Connecticut. After seeing the effect the long commute has on Matt, his family rents a nearby house, which they learn was previously a funeral home. They discover a mortuary room in the basement and the family begins experiencing violent and supernatural events that the parents initially blame on stress and hallucinations from Matt's treatment."

(Above taken from here).

This wasn't too bad of a movie. I watched it with Wayne recently, and he loved it. As for me? Well, I wasn't quite as impressed. Don't get me wrong, it wasn't a bad movie, but it wasn't really my cup of tea, so to speak. Actually, I only watched the whole thing because Wayne was watching it too, and enjoying it, and we were in my bedroom watching it on my TV. I figured turning the TV off and going to bed would be a bit mean when he'd been dying to watch it, so I let him watch it all before turning the TV off and sending him out of my room so I could go to bed.

Tori

Friday, April 09, 2010

Kero's korner: Daisy, Poppy and Easter (LBE)

Hi humans, it's Kero here.


First of all, here's a photo of me that Mami and Dadi took when I had not long gotten back home from the vet after the surgery to remove that lump last month. The vet trip was tiring, so - as you can see from the photo - I really needed a nap after that experience!



And here is a photo of the card that my pal Iggy sent me to make me feel better.




And here I am on my bed with some of my teddies a few days later.



I promised I would tell you about my play date with the girls. But, before I get to that, here's a photo of Daisy. You can see a bit of Poppy in the photo too. There's a better photo of Daisy, but I'll show you that one in a bit. Anyway...



So, Mami disappeared for a bit, leaving me with Mamgu. I wasn't impressed. I mean, I do love Mamgu, but I absolutely HATE when Mami leaves me. I started to cry, but Mamgu just told me to shut up. How rude! Still, I felt better when Mami came back, especially since she was followed quite quickly by Daisy, Daisy's daughter, Poppy, and their human.


Daisy was pleased to see me, and I was pleased to see her. As for Poppy? Well, she's always pleased to see anyone. Dogs, puppies, grown humans, human pups... She doesn't mind.

On the way to the flat, Mamgu stopped the car at one of those big shops where the humans can spend what feels like forever buying food. I'm not interested in that sort of stuff as a general rule, but Mamgu brought me a treat. That's why I'm telling you about it, because of the treat. Daisy spotted the treat within seconds of coming in to the flat, and she grabbed it. I didn't want her to have it, but I get in trouble if I growl, so I went and told Mamgu. She wasn't sure what I wanted at first, but I convinced her to follow me, and there was Daisy with my treat. Mamgu took it off her, but gave her something else instead. I didn't mind that though, I was just pleased my new treat was put up on the counter where even Willow would have been hard pressed to reach it. I just hoped they'd remember to give it back to me when Daisy and Poppy went back home again. But I figured I'd worry about that when the time came. All that mattered at that moment in time was that neither of the girls would be able to eat it. My treat was safe!


Anyway...

The humans opened the back door, but closed all other doors. Us dogs didn't mind though, because we just went out and played in the muddy garden. Poppy found my ball, which I'd forgotten about, so me and her played with it for a while. Here's a photo of Poppy running around in the garden. She sure does run a lot. I wish I was still that energetic!



We all got really, REALLY muddy, and Poppy tired first Daisy and then me out. Daisy is a couple of months older than me, and I think that couple of months makes a big difference.

Daisy turned 6 on March 15th, I will be 6 on May 23rd, and Poppy will be turning 1 at the end of April. I forget the number, but I think it's around the 24th... Give or take a day or so.

That's basically how Daisy, Poppy and I spent our afternoon... Playing in the mud, and resting up to play in the mud again. Then, playing ball, and resting up to play ball again. Well, Daisy and I rested. I don't think Poppy has learned the meaning of the word yet.


Here is a photo of each of us that Daisy and Poppy's human took while we were in the garden (before we managed to get too muddy). She tried for more, but we were racing about so much that photo taking was difficult. The humans used treats to get these photos.


Daisy looking hopeful.



Poppy begging.



And, of course, me.



It was a fun afternoon, which was made even better by the fact the humans remembered to give back my treat when the girls had gone, so I was able to spend a relaxing evening chewing it.

If that wasn't enough fun to pack in to the day, Mami and Mamgu gave me a really neat toy in the evening. They pulled some kind of human pup toy out of it, then put a dog treat in it, then gave it to me. I wasn't sure what to do at first, but then I figured the best bet would be to try and get it open like the humans had. Eventually, I managed it, and I got to eat the treat. They put another one in it then, but I figured it out quicker the second time, and had it open in no time flat. After which I went back to eating that other treat, then I took a nap until it was time for my before bed trip in to the garden.


The next day we had what the humans call a "duvet day" until it was time for the car ride back to the house. Willow was really pleased to see me when I got back. And, yes, I was really pleased to see her too. She may be a total idiot, but you can't help but love her.

Soon after we got home, visitors came for that roleplaying thing the humans do with dice. I decided I wanted to spend the evening watching TV with Willow and Mamgu instead though.

Something called "Easter" happened on Sunday too. I don't know what that was all about, but the humans all got a load of chocolate, and me and Willow got Jumbones each. It took me all day to eat mine, so at least I had something to make me feel better while Mami was at that gaming club place she keeps going to with Dadi and Dadci on Sunday afternoons.

During Tuesday's walkies we spotted a couple of dogs we hadn't seen before. Willow and I both really wanted to go say, "hi," to them, but Mami and Wayne said no. They said if the dogs and their human came past us we could say hi to them, otherwise, no. If only they hadn't been going a different way to us! They did come back past the house on their way home, but by then we were indoors, and Nani wouldn't let me go outside to talk to them.

Not much else happened this week. Mind you, after that exciting weekend I was glad of a quiet week!

Well, it's time for me and Willow to go walkies. So, I will let this do, then I can go and see what smells are out there today, and which other dogs have been walking on our route.


Licks and sniffs,
Kero

Thursday, April 08, 2010

"No action necessary"

That's what it apparently says on my notes at the moment to do with my iron level. Partly due to the results of the most recent blood test (from two weeks ago), and partly due to the fact I have an appointment with the gynecologist next Thursday (April 15th) and it's hoped that something can be done by that particular doctor to sort out the suspected cause of my anemia. The results of the blood test, by the way, were that my iron level in my blood was up to 12.4, despite that particular thing being an issue at the time of the blood test. Bearing in mind, 12 is considered normal, and 12 to 14 is considered "in the average/normal range" for people. So, I'm obviously doing something right. Well, there's the 600 mgs of iron in those tablets too... I dare say that's helping a fair bit as well. ;)

Tori

Marley And Me: The Movie

"A family learns important life lessons from their adorable, but naughty and neurotic dog

(Above from this page).

If you ignore how much of the story is slightly altered, or missing, from the book, then it was a fantastic movie! Mind you, even with the missing and altered parts it was really good. The ending is a real tear jerker though, so have tissues ready for that part! And guys... That goes for you too!

Tori

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Thinking spots

When the weather permits it, I like to take my morning cup of tea - well, nettle tea now - out in to the garden. I sit down on one of the patio chairs, or on the swing seat, and I think.


I think about my plans for the day.

I think about things that have happened recently in my life.

I think about things that happened a long time ago in my life.

I think about things I hope will happen in my life in the future.


I think about the people who matter to me in my life... My family, and my friends.

I think about the birds I hear singing in the trees, and at the feeder.

But mostly I think about the answer to whatever random question happens to be floating about in my head that morning. Be it about the mysteries of the universe, about something I heard or read recently, or about anything else that might have sparked my curiosity.

On days when it's just too wet to sit outside, I do my thinking indoors. I always find I get the best results when I'm sat in the garden though. Perhaps the fresh air helps me think?

Anyway, I was thinking about the fact I was thinking, and then I got to wondering, and what I was wondering, was this... Do you have a thinking spot in which you like to sit and think? Or, perhaps, a time that you like to set aside for reflections, contemplations, and considerations? A time and place, perhaps, for all your wonderings and ponderings?

Tori

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

My Easter weekend (FD)

As mentioned in Kero's post, Kero, Mam and I went to sleep down the flat Friday night. We haven't let it go yet, because we want to give a few months of us all living under the same roof to see how things go before giving up the flat. Anyway, we figured a "girls only" night would be nice, but took Kero because it would be cruel to the others to leave him with them. Why? Well, because Kero has seporation anxiety, and he has a tendancy to howl on and off the entire time I'm gone. Meaning that people prefer me to take him with me when possible.


Anyway...

We had some hot cross buns for lunch with everyone else. Well, I say, "everyone," but it wasn't really everyone... Kelly doesn't like them, because he doesn't like currants. But, anyway, we had the hot cross buns, then we went down the flat. Stopping in Tescos on the way to grab a couple of things we needed, and a couple of things we wanted even though we didn't really need them. Only Mam went in Tescos, Kero and I stayed in the car. Poor little guy thought we were taking him to the vet, so Mam brought him a treat to make him feel better.


When we got to the flat, I went to see Eleri and give her the treats we'd brought for her, Faye, and the dogs. It was just her and the dogs there, and Mam was making ginger cake, which she said she loved, so we invited her in for some while the dogs played together.

Since it was a nice day, we left the back door open, and the dogs ran in and out, in and out. The garden was muddy from the rain we've had recently, so the kitchen floor - and all three dogs - ended up absolutely filthy! Poppy and Kero seemed to be enjoying themselves most. They found a ball of Kero's that I'd forgotten was in the garden. Well, actually, Poppy found it. And they had a great time with it. Kero got bored first, but then he's 5 years older than Poppy (Kero turns 6 in May, Poppy turns 1 at the end of April). Any more to share about the dogs' play time will be in Kero's post on Friday.

When Eleri, Daisy and Poppy had gone, Mam made us what we're calling a "veggie's fry up." Which is basically a full English breakfast, only without the meat themed stuff. Which basically means we had fried tomatoes, fried mushrooms, fried eggs, and beans, and the whole lot was served on toast. That was what we fancied for dinner, so that was what we had.

We then spent the evening talking and messing about. Then we had supper. Being totally honest, we did pig out a bit at supper time. We each had a small desert - mine was apple crumble, Mam's was lemon mirangue pie - and we ate some chocolate. One of the chocolate things we had was a kinder surprise egg, which we'd gotten for the fun of it. So we ended up spending a while trying to figure out how to put the toy in mine together. It was some sort of plane or spaceship type thing, and it took AGES to put together! While we worked on it, we gave Kero the little plastic egg the toy came from, but we put a small dog treat in it for him to get out of it. It took us a lot longer to put the toy together than it took him to get the treat from the egg though. LOL!

After that we had cocoa, then we went to bed.


We spent most of Saturday just lazing about. We didn't even get dressed until just before we were leaving the flat to come back to the house... We just stayed in PJs. Mam did make a veggie bake though. We ate most of it, then put the rest in a container for me to have Monday, since I wasn't having what the others were having for their dinners. She also made me a boiled egg sandwich, and there was another little lemon mirangue pie, so Mam let me eat that.

We got back to the house not long before roleplaying, and by the time that was over it was bed time.

Sunday morning, the first thing Mam, Nan and I did was sort out Easter eggs, putting everyone's chocolate stuff on their mats at the table. Then I packed mine and Kelly's tuck bags, because we were still going to the gaming club, so we needed stuff for tea time as normal. I put a little chocolate egg in each of our tucks. Mine was a proper Cadburys cream egg, Kelly's was the mint aero one, because he doesn't really like cream eggs.

I did well for chocolate. Two chocolate bunnies, a chocolate chick full of chocolate buttons, about a dozen cream eggs, two ordinary Easter eggs, and a few little sweets (caramel bunnies, mini eggs, etc). And all I've eaten of them is half an Easter egg, and 3 cream eggs.

Anyway, the rest of Sunday was a normal Sunday for me: walk the dogs with Wayne, have dinner (it's almost always a roast on a Sunday) and go to club. We were a bit earlier than normal home from club though, but that was due to tiredness rather than anything else.

Then yesterday (Monday) I woke up WAY too early. I ended up getting up at 2:30 am, so was starting to get tired when everyone else hadn't long gotten up. Elizabeth came up to see us for the morning, and we were meant to all watch "Open Season 2" only I was just too tired, so I went to sleep instead. The others watched it though. I think they were going to leave watching it because of me going to sleep, but I told them to go ahead and watch it without me. No sense them missing out on watching it just because I was tired.

I got up in time for lunch, then Mam and I went to Asda for a few things. We noticed that the Easter treats were already at reduced prices, so we grabbed ourselves a couple more things to add to our chocolate stashes, and I brought Mam a chocolate bunny, because nobody had brought her one, and she wanted one.


Then we came home, and I spent the rest of the day alternating between sorting e-mails and such, and working on the write up for the roleplaying session we had on Saturday evening. Doing the write ups doesn't usually take long, but between the fact we'd had quite a long session in which a lot had happened, and the fact I kept getting side tracked with different things I wanted to be doing, it took me until well in to the evening to finish.

So, that's my Easter weekend. Yeah, I know, not really all that exciting really. No family BBQs, no family picnics or buffets. But it works for me, and I had a good weekend.

Hope you had a great weekend! Enjoy whatever's left of your day! :)

Tori

Monday, April 05, 2010

Easter Bunny, Easter Hare, or Spring Bunny,

From Wikipedia

The Easter Bunny or Easter Hare (sometimes Spring Bunny in the U.S.) is a character depicted as rabbit bringing Easter eggs, who sometimes is depicted in an anthropomorphic way (e.g. with clothes). In legend, the creature brings baskets filled with colored eggs, candy and sometimes also toys to the homes of children on the night before Easter. The Easter Bunny will either put the baskets in a designated place or hide them somewhere in the house or garden for the children to find when they wake up in the morning.

The Easter Bunny is very similar in trait to its Christmas holiday counterpart, Santa Claus, as they both bring gifts to good children on the night before their respective holiday. It was first mentioned in Georg Franck von Frankenau's De ovis paschalibus (About the Easter Egg) referring to an Alsace tradition of an Easter Hare bringing Easter Eggs (and the negative impact of too much egg consumption).

Origins
The Easter Bunny as an Easter symbol bringing Easter eggs seems to have its origins in Alsace and the Upper Rhineland, both then in the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation, and southwestern Germany, where it was first recorded in a German publication in the early 1600s. The first edible Easter Bunnies were made in Germany during the early 1800s and were made of pastry and sugar.

The Easter Bunny was introduced to America by the German settlers who arrived in the Pennsylvania Dutch country during the 1700s. The arrival of the "O_ster Haws_e" (a phonetic transcription of a dialectal pronunciation of the German Osterhase) was considered one of "childhood's greatest pleasures," similar to the arrival of Kriist Kindle (from the German Christkindl) on Christmas Eve.

According to the tradition, children would build brightly colored nests, often out of caps and bonnets, in secluded areas of their homes. The "O_ster Haws_e" would, if the children had been good, lay brightly colored eggs in the nest. As the tradition spread, the nest has become the manufactured, modern Easter basket, and the placing of the nest in a secluded area has become the tradition of hiding baskets.

Symbols
Rabbits and hares
Eggs, like rabbits and hares, are fertility symbols of extreme antiquity. Since birds lay eggs and rabbits and hares give birth to large litters in the early spring, these became symbols of the rising fertility of the earth at the Vernal Equinox.

The saying "mad as a March hare" refers to the wild caperings of hares as the males fight over the females in the early spring, then attempt to mate with them. Since the females often rebuff the males' advances before finally submitting, the mating behavior often looks like a crazy dance; these fights led early observers to believe that the advent of spring made the hares "mad." This bold behavior makes the hares, normally timid and retiring animals, much more conspicuous to human observation in the spring.

Rabbits and hares are both prolific breeders. The females can conceive a second litter of offspring while still pregnant with the first. This phenomenon is known as superfetation. Lagomorphs mature sexually at an early age and can give birth to several litters a year (hence the sayings, "to breed like bunnies" or "multiply like rabbits"). It is therefore not surprising that rabbits and hares should become fertility symbols, or that their springtime mating antics should enter into Easter folklore.

Eggs
The precise origin of the ancient custom of coloring eggs is not known, although evidently the blooming of many flowers in spring coincides with the use of the fertility symbol of eggs - and eggs boiled with some flowers change their color, bringing the spring into the homes. Many Christians of the Eastern Orthodox Church to this day typically dye their Easter eggs red, the color of blood, in recognition of the blood of the sacrificed Christ (and, of the renewal of life in springtime). Some also use the color green, in honor of the new foliage emerging after the long dead time of winter.

German Protestants wanted to retain the Catholic custom of eating colored eggs for Easter, but did not want to introduce their children to the Catholic rite of fasting. Eggs were forbidden to Catholics during the fast of Lent, which was the reason for the abundance of eggs at Easter time.

The idea of an egg-laying bunny came to the United States in the 18th century. German immigrants in the Pennsylvania Dutch area told their children about the "Osterhas," sometimes spelled "Oschter Haws." "Hase" means "hare," not rabbit, and in Northwest European folklore the "Easter Bunny" indeed is a hare, not a rabbit. According to the legend, only good children received gifts of colored eggs in the nests that they made in their caps and bonnets before Easter. In 1835, Jakob Grimm wrote of long-standing similar myths in Germany itself. Grimm suggested that these derived from legends of a goddess called Ostara, but as a romanticist, he tried to connect contemporary customs to pre-Christian traditions, knowing that no written sources of that time existed. Additionally, a goddess of that name is only mentioned in a single ancient source giving an ambiguous statement about an Ostara month.

Media
Easter has become a commercially celebrated event, with shops and media advertising Easter around Spring. The Easter Bunny is usually a big part of Easter for younger children, so, it often appears on Easter commercials. The Easter Bunny is also featured a lot on Easter TV specials, and in Easter themed films, such as Here Comes Peter Cottontail: The Movie.

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Above taken from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Easter_Bunny

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Easter Eggs

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Easter eggs or spring eggs are special eggs given to celebrate the Easter holiday or springtime.

The egg was a symbol of the rebirth of the earth in celebrations of spring and was adopted by early Christians as a symbol of the resurrection of Jesus.[1]

The oldest tradition is to use dyed or painted chicken eggs, but a modern custom is to substitute chocolate eggs, or plastic eggs filled with confectionery such as jelly beans. These eggs are often hidden, allegedly by the Easter Bunny, for children to find on Easter morning. Otherwise, they are generally put in a basket filled with real or artificial straw to resemble a bird's nest.

Origin and folklore
Fabergé eggs were commissioned by Czar Alexander III of Russia as an Easter surprise for his wife Maria Fyodorovna

The egg is widely used as a symbol of the start of new life, just as new life emerges from an egg when the chick hatches out.

The ancient Zoroastrians painted eggs for Nowrooz, their New Year celebration, which falls on the Spring equinox. The Nawrooz tradition has existed for at least 2,500 years. The sculptures on the walls of Persepolis show people carrying eggs for Nowrooz to the king.

At the Jewish Passover Seder, a hard-boiled egg dipped in salt water symbolizes the festival sacrifice offered at the Temple in Jerusalem.

There are good grounds for the association between hares (later termed Easter bunnies) and eggs, through folklore confusion between hares' forms (where they raise their young) and plovers' nests.

Christian symbols and practice
The egg is seen by followers of christianity as symbolic of the grave and life renewed or resurrected by breaking out of it. The red supposedly symbolizes the blood of Christ redeeming the world and human redemption through the blood shed in the sacrifice of the crucifixion. The egg itself is a symbol of resurrection: while being dormant it contains a new life sealed within it.

For Orthodox Christians, the Easter egg is much more than a celebration of the ending of the fast, it is a declaration of the Resurrection of Jesus. Traditionally, Orthodox Easter eggs are dyed red to represent the blood of Christ, shed on the Cross, and the hard shell of the egg symbolized the sealed Tomb of Christ—the cracking of which symbolized his resurrection from the dead.

In the Orthodox and Eastern Catholic Churches, Easter eggs are blessed by the priest at the end of the Paschal Vigil, and distributed to the faithful. Each household also brings an Easter basket to church, filled not only with Easter eggs but also with other Paschal foods such as paskha, kulich or Easter breads, and these are blessed by the priest as well.

During Paschaltide, in some traditions the Paschal greeting with the Easter egg is even extended to the deceased. On either the second Monday or Tuesday of Pascha, after a memorial service people bring blessed eggs to the cemetery and bring the joyous paschal greeting, "Christ has risen", to their beloved departed (see Radonitza).

Pious legends
While the origin of easter eggs can be explained in the symbolic terms described above, a pious legend among followers of Eastern Christianity says that Mary Magdalene was bringing cooked eggs to share with the other women at the tomb of Jesus, and the eggs in her basket miraculously turned brilliant red when she saw the risen Christ.

A different, but not necessarily conflicting legend concerns Mary Magdalene's efforts to spread the Gospel. According to this tradition, after the Ascension of Jesus, Mary went to the Emperor of Rome and greeted him with “Christ has risen,” whereupon he pointed to an egg on his table and stated, “Christ has no more risen than that egg is red.” After making this statement it is said the egg immediately turned blood red.

Decorating techniques
Easter eggs are a widely popular symbol of new life in Bulgaria, Russia, Romania, Ukraine, Poland and other Slavic countries' folk traditions. A batik (wax resist) process is used to create intricate, brilliantly-colored eggs., the best-known of which is the Ukrainian pysanka. The celebrated Fabergé workshops created exquisite jewelled Easter eggs for the Russian Imperial Court. Most of these creations themselves contained hidden surprises such as clock-work birds, or miniature ships. A 27-foot (9 m) sculpture of a pysanka stands in Vegreville, Alberta.

There are many other decorating techniques and numerous traditions of giving them as a token of friendship, love or good wishes. A tradition exists in some parts of the United Kingdom (such as Scotland and North East England) of rolling painted eggs down steep hills on Easter Sunday. In the U.S., such an Easter egg roll (unrelated to an eggroll) is often done on flat ground, pushed along with a spoon; the Easter Egg Roll has become a much-loved annual event on the White House lawn. An Easter egg hunt is a common festive activity, where eggs are hidden outdoors (or indoors if in bad weather) for children to run around and find. This may also be a contest to see who can collect the most eggs.

When boiling hard-cooked eggs for Easter, a popular tan colour can be achieved by boiling the eggs with onion skins. A greater variety of colour was often provided by tying on the onion skin with different coloured woollen yarn. In the North of England these are called pace-eggs or paste-eggs, from a dialectal form of Middle English pasche. They were usually eaten after an egg-jarping (egg-tapping) competition.

Easter egg traditions
Egg hunt is a game during which decorated eggs, real hard-boiled ones or artificial ones filled with, or made of chocolate candies, of various sizes, are hidden for children to find, both indoors and outdoors.

When the hunt is over, prizes may be given for the largest number of eggs collected, or for the largest or the smallest egg.

Real eggs may further be used in egg tapping contests.

In the North of England, at Eastertime, a traditional game is played where hard boiled pace eggs are distributed and each player hits the other player's egg with their own. This is known as "egg tapping", "egg dumping" or "egg jarping". The winner is the holder of the last intact egg. The losers get to eat their eggs. The annual egg jarping world championship is held every year over Easter in Peterlee Cricket Club. It is also practiced in Bulgaria, Hungary, Croatia, Lebanon, Macedonia, Romania, Serbia, Ukraine, and other countries. They call it tucanje. In parts of Austria, Bavaria and German-speaking Switzerland it is called Ostereiertitschen or Eierpecken. In South Louisiana this practice is called Pocking Eggs and is slightly different. The Cajuns hold that the winner eats the eggs of the losers in each round.

The central European Slavic nations (Czechs and Slovaks etc.) have a tradition of gathering eggs by gaining them from the females in return of whipping them with a pony-tail shaped whip made out of fresh willow branches and splashing them with water, which is supposed to give them health and beauty.

Egg rolling is also a traditional Easter egg game played with eggs at Easter. In England, Germany, and other countries children traditionally rolled eggs down hillsides at Easter. This tradition was taken to the New World by European settlers. Different nations have different versions of the game.

Egg dance is a traditional Easter game in which eggs are laid on the ground or floor and the goal is to dance among them without damaging any eggs, which originated in Germany. In the UK the dance is called the hop-egg.

The Pace Egg plays are traditional village plays, with a rebirth theme. The drama takes the form of a combat between the hero and villain, in which the hero is killed and brought to life, The plays take place in England during Easter.

As food
The Easter egg tradition may also have merged into the celebration of the end of the privations of Lent in the West. Historically, it was traditional to use up all of the household's eggs before Lent began. Eggs were originally forbidden during Lent as well as on other traditional fast days in Western Christianity (this tradition still continues among the Eastern Christian Churches). Likewise, in Eastern Christianity, both meat and dairy are prohibited during the Lenten fast, and eggs are seen as "dairy" (a foodstuff that could be taken from an animal without shedding its blood). This established the tradition of Pancake Day being celebrated on Shrove Tuesday. This day, the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday Lent begins is also known as Mardi Gras, a French phrase which translates as "Fat Tuesday" to mark the last consumption of eggs and dairy before Lent begins.

In the Orthodox Church, Great Lent begins on Clean Monday, rather than Wednesday, so the household's dairy products would be used up in the preceding week, called Cheesefare Week. During Lent, since chickens would not stop producing eggs during this time, a larger than usual store might be available at the end of the fast if the eggs had not been allowed to hatch. The surplus, if any, had to be eaten quickly to prevent spoiling. Then, with the coming of Easter, Pascha the eating of eggs resumes.

One would have been forced to hard boil the eggs that the chickens produced so as not to waste food, and for this reason the Spanish dish hornazo (traditionally eaten on and around Easter) contains hard-boiled eggs as a primary ingredient. In Hungary, easter eggs are used sliced in potato casseroles around Easter.

Easter eggs for the visually-impaired
Beeping Easter eggs are Easter eggs that emit various clicks and noises so that the visually-impaired children can easily hunt for Easter eggs.

Some beeping Easter eggs make a single, high-pitched sound, while other types of beeping Easter eggs play a melody.

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Above taken from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Easter_egg

Friday, April 02, 2010

Kero's korner: lady friends and nasty weather

Hi humans, it's Kero here.

I have to make this short because Mami, Mamgu and I are sleeping at the flat tonight... Just the three of us! Mami says we're going down there soon-ish, but coming back up to the house in time for roleplaying tomorrow. That means I will probably see Daisy and Poppy. Poppy is Daisy's daughter... She's nearly a year old now, that means she's old enough for me to take an interest in her. Oh, don't tell Daisy I said that though, Daisy wouldn't be impressed!

Anyway, the week hasn't been that exciting. The weather has been nasty most of the week... Rain, sleet, rain, hail stones, rain, snow, rain... Did I mention rain? I did? Well, there's been a lot of it! It's times like this I'm very glad I have one of those doggy jackets. Willow doesn't have a doggy jacket, but then she loves water... She's one crazy dog!

That's about all there is to say, sorry!

Licks and sniffs,
Kero

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Busyness, weather and Yummies (FD)

WOW! It's April 1st already! I have no idea where the time keeps going! Well, actually I think I do. And I also think it's lucky that I've been setting up posts with reviews in them in advance from time to time, or you'd end up with days at a time with no posts from me! It's because I'm doing so many different things. I mean, between crafts, roleplaying, figure games, outings with Mam, watching movies, reading or listening to books/audiobooks (as applicable), walking the dogs, etc, my day does get filled up pretty quickly. For example, my weekends basically revolve around roleplaying and other club activities. Mondays I spend most of the day doing battle reports or roleplaying write-ups to post on Dad's forum that he has for the club. I ended up doing this because I did it once, everyone thought I did it well, so now everyone just gives me the information required to do this and leaves me to it. It seems I'm the only one in the club with any enthusiasm when it comes to writing. But, I don't mind (if I did I wouldn't do it). Anyway, Tuesdays I'm normally out shopping with Mam, and Fridays Kelly cooks dinner, so I do the prep work for him (sorting veg, putting pies together, etc). The rest of the time is free for me to do as I please pretty much. Although, I do help Dad do laundry. At the moment though my "free" days are filled with reading rules for things, learning what I need to ready for doing the roleplaying campaign I plan to do, listening to the pile of audiobooks I had to listen to (I say "had" because I've almost finished listening to them all) and working on all my craft projects. This is why I keep getting so behind on blogs lately, and being such a bad blogger. Sorry about that! :(

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Our weather has been really weird over the past couple of days. We've had sun, rain, hail, sleet and snow. The only one of those that's been lasting for more than a few minutes at a time though is the rain, so the snow hasn't been settling at all. It never does when - like these past couple of days - it rains a lot before and after the snow comes.

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It's gotten that most Thursdays involve take-away. I don't think that's a big deal though, because the rest of the week it is home cooked meals (well, apart from the odd microwave meal, canned soup, etc, had on a Saturday). Quite often I cheat though, because I'll buy a pizza or something from Asda, but we'll cook it at home and I still say it's technically take-away. We had proper take-away today though. We had "Yummies" which is a pizza, kabob, burger, and fried chicken delivery service that's near us. I wasn't all that enthusiastic about the idea at first. I mean, what's a place like that going to have that I'll eat? But I know Kelly loves his pizza, so figured if there wasn't anything I'd either just have fries, or make something at home. As it turned out though, Yummies has a lot for vegetarians. They have salad pockets (salad in pitta bread), veggie burgers, potato wedges, chips (fries), onion rings, garlic bread, and various dips and sauces you can get to go with these things. I figured I'd try their veggie burger with some chips, so we got a meal combo. The one we got was for a 12 inch pizza of your choice, a piece of chicken, any burger, two lots of fries, and a small-ish tub of colslaw. Kelly had the pizza, I had them make the burger a veggie burger and had one of the portions of chips with it (using the colslaw as a dip for the chips), we had the chicken for Kero and Willow to share, and we let Wayne have the other lot of chips. We also had a free 1 & 1/2 litre bottle of pop with that. And all for £16 (about $30, or a bit less). Plus, the veggie burger was... Well, there's no other way to put it... Yummy! ;)

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I think that basically covers everything I planned on saying today.

So... Enjoy whatever's left of your day, and stay safe! :)

Tori