Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy October 31st (FD)

Happy Halloween or Blessed Samhain to you! :)

Also, happy birthday to my friend Claire, who probably wont see this, but never mind, happy birthday anyway, Claire! :)

And, happy 1st wedding anniversary to Stephanie and Matt; I hope you enjoy celebrating the end of your first year as man and wife, and that it's the first of many!

That's it from me for now though; I'm off to eat some pumpkin pie that I made earlier, drink some pumpkin juice, and read more of the witchy tea party posts while I wait to see if any trick-or-treaters will come calling tonight.

A happy Halloween or blessed Samhain (whichever you'd prefer) to everyone! :)

The 12 Days Of Samhain

"This silly song is a great way to get your kids (or other adults) in the mood for the Samhain season. Sing it along to the tune of the classic Twelve Days of Christmas!"

On the first day of Samhain my true love gave to me
a black cat in a spooky tree.

On the second day of Samhain my true love gave to me
two jack o lanterns
and a black cat in a spooky tree.

On the third day of Samhain my true love gave to me
three crooked headstones,
two jack o'lanterns
and a black cat in a spooky tree.

On the fourth day of Samhain my true love gave to me
four séance spirits,
three crooked headstones,
two jack o'lanterns
and a black cat in a spooky tree.

On the fifth day of Samhain my true love gave to me
five pointy hats,
four séance spirits,
three crooked headstones,
two jack o'lanterns
and a black cat in a spooky tree.

On the sixth day of Samhain my true love gave to me
six owls a-hooting,
five pointy hats,
four séance spirits,
three crooked headstones,
two jack o'lanterns
and a black cat in a spooky tree.

On the seventh day of Samhain my true love gave to me
seven skulls a-grinning,
six owls a-hooting,
five pointy hats,
four séance spirits,
three crooked headstones,
two jack o'lanterns
and a black cat in a spooky tree.

On the eighth day of Samhain my true love gave to me
eight ghosts a-haunting,
seven skulls a-grinning,
six owls a-hooting,
five pointy hats,
four séance spirits,
three crooked headstones,
two jack o'lanterns
and a black cat in a spooky tree.

On the ninth day of Samhain my true love gave to me
nine dead men dancing,
eight ghosts a-haunting,
seven skulls a-grinning,
six owls a-hooting,
five pointy hats,
four séance spirits,
three crooked headstones,
two jack o'lanterns
and a black cat in a spooky tree.

On the tenth day of Samhain my true love gave to me
ten bats a-gliding,
nine dead men dancing,
eight ghosts a-haunting,
seven skulls a-grinning,
six owls a-hooting,
five pointy hats,
four séance spirits,
three crooked headstones,
two jack o'lanterns
and a black cat in a spooky tree.

On the eleventh day of Samhain my true love gave to me
eleven spiders crawling,
ten bats a-gliding,
nine dead men dancing,
eight ghosts a-haunting,
seven skulls a-grinning,
six owls a-hooting,
five pointy hats,
four séance spirits,
three crooked headstones,
two jack o'lanterns
and a black cat in a spooky tree.

On the twelfth day of Samhain my true love gave to me
twelve brooms a-flying,
eleven spiders crawling,
ten bats a-gliding,
nine dead men dancing,
eight ghosts a-haunting,
seven skulls a-grinning,
six owls a-hooting,
five pointy hats,
four séance spirits,
three crooked headstones,
two jack o'lanterns
and a black cat in a spooky tree.

(Click here to see the page I got "The 12 days of Samhain" from).

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Witchy Tea Party 2011: Part 2 (LBE and FD)

Scroll down for part 1, and when you've done that, join me for an Autumn themed tea party...

Don't mind the bat; he's already been fed...

My friend Mr Pumpkin Head made it to the party...

So, take a seat next to him.

I've made sandwiches using the bread and plum jam I made, and some chocolate leaves...

And, of course, there's tea; herbal tea though, though I'm sure we can find something else for you if you'd prefer. The herbal tea is blackberry and nettle, with a hint of echinacea. A tasty combination, and good for you too!

Everything on the menu is suitable for vegetarians, so those of you who - like myself - are vegetarian don't need to worry; just dig in... What you see here is just a small selection, I have plenty more, it's just not pictured!

All fed and watered now? Great!

Well, my altar is set up for the simple ritual I'm doing...

The photo on my altar is Myskanco "Chance" Silva Flame. That was always my favourite photo of him. As I said yesterday, Chance was a very special cat to me. He was an oriental (Siamese with markings other than the "points" associated with the Siamese cat) and I loved him. I got him by Chance, hence his name; I was meant to get a Chocolate Point Siamese, but Dakoda had been a sickly kitten, and never made it to be a part of our family. So we got Silva Flame, but I know from day one that - despite the fact that the "Silva Flame" was the name we gave to him - he would be called "Chance" at home. I clearly remember the day he came home; he was scared, hissing, and striking out with his claws at Kero, etc. He decided to climb up on top of the kitchen cabinets (not on the counters, up on top of the wall mounted ones) to hide. I left him a bit, then climbed on a chair so I could be at his level. I could still see then... I looked at him, he looked at me, and that's how we stayed for a while. Then I gently stroked him and said, "it's OK," before getting down from the chair and leaving him there. We'd reached an understanding; he wanted to be my friend, but he needed time. And I was prepared to give him that time. My patience paid off, and pretty soon he was extremely affectionate with me; loved me to cuddle with him, loved me petting him, and loved playing with his cat toys with me. He could sometimes still strike out at others, but never once did he even attempt to use his claws against me. He was smart too; I taught him to "beg" and "come" on command, and he knew how to "sit" too! When he died it broke my heart; too soon, much too soon! I've missed all the animals that have been a part of my life, but none as much as I miss Chance. He died in my arms while I begged him to "just keep breathing," and wished I could do more than just hold him.

So, that's Chance's story in a nutshell. And, if you're wondering, Chance's picture is on my altar because I know it will be him on my mind mostly while I do the meditation ritual this Samhain; along with many others, of course. Speaking of which...

It looks like Kero wants to join in with the ritual today...

I've got an idea how he can help...

Kero can man the phone with Mr Pumpkin Head so I don't get disturbed during ritual...


Now that all the arrangements are made for my Samhain ritual, it's time for me to get on with enjoying myself. Among other things, I think I'll go and visit the other tea party guests; wont you join me?


Click the button below to join in all the tea party fun:

Frosted Petunias

Thank you to Anna for hosting the Witchy Tea Party.
Thank you to Kelly for decorating the bat for me and helping with the photos.
Thank you to my Grandma for funding the purchase of my new purple teapot.
And thank you to Kero for being a good dog and posing by Mr Pumpkin Head for me.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Witchy Tea Party 2011: Part 1

***Scroll down for this week's "Get Off Your Broom" update***

When I found out that Anna was hosting a Witchy Tea Party this Samhain/Halloween/All Hallows Eve (whichever you would prefer to call it) my first thought was of Chance. Chance was a special cat who I loved dearly, and miss very much. But, as much as I miss him, Chance can wait a bit; come back tomorrow to read more on him.

The topic of this post is Zack. "And who is Zack?" I hear you ask. Zack is a very special young man who left this world just a couple of months ago. I knew Zack as a youngster; he was an adorable little boy who always seemed to be happy. I knew him because I knew his Mother. Zack was the 5th born child of 6 children; 3 boys (Zack being the youngest) and 3 girls. I lost touch with the family during the time I've been married, but recently found them again. I wish it had been under happier circumstances, but it was not. Anyway, I wanted to take the time to celebrate a young man who was much loved by many, and who is dearly missed, so I asked Carrieann (his Mother) if it would be OK, and for a bit more information on the teenage Zack, since it had been so long since I saw him. And here's what she had to say: "He was famous for wearing his beanie hat, always smiling...... his smile could light the world on a cloudy day,randomly hugging people, making people laugh, playing his guitar and X box, and caring for his little sister. He was a lovely boy who was always happy during his 15 yrs here on earth."

She also said that if anyone should receive a message from him then she's happy to take it, so if you should, please pass it on and I will tell her. Also, she has a message for him: "Tell him I love him loads & I miss him everyday."

We could all learn a lot from Zack; live each day to the fullest while you have the oppertunity to do so, make someone's day by giving them a hug, and keep on smiling!

Rest in peace Zack, and know you are missed. Yes, the world is missing a remarkable young man, and the Summerlands have gained a beautiful soul!


Don't forget to come back for part 2 tomorrow. In the meantime, click on the button below to see who else is invited to the party and visit them:

Frosted Petunias

Thank you to Anna for hosting this tea party.
And, perhaps most importantly, thank you to Carrieann for helping me with the information for this post, and for allowing me to share Zack with the world.


Finally, a note to all other party guests: If you want me to comment on your blog, please remove the word verification thing. I can't work it due to the fact that it's hard enough to work when you can see, and next to impossible when you can't (the listen and type thing never works). And it's not fair to bug someone every time I want to leave a comment. So, if you have the word verification thing then I will be visiting, but will be unable to comment. If you decide to keep word verification on your blog, that's fine; your blog, your choice. I'm just saying that people like me can't comment on your blog with that on, so if I seem to only be commenting on a couple of blogs, that's why; you'll notice a lack of word verification on the blogs I comment on. I don't want to be difficult; like I said, your blog, your choice. I'm just posting this for your information, and because I don't want you to just think I'm ignoring you or whatever, because I wouldn't do that... I plan to visit everyone on the list, and comment where possible!

Get Off Your Broom: Week 4 reviewed (FD)

It's time for this week's Get Off Your Broom update.

But first; the challenge that Serenity set last week...

Part 1 was to think about - and look at - your diet, and figure out if you're eating a balanced diet. So, I thought about it, and I looked at the Vegetarian Food Pyramid Serenity linked to, and came up with the answer... Most days. I have a couple of days where I'll eat too many things from one food group, and not enough from another. But most days I eat a decent balanced diet; I just have to learn to bear my activity level in mind a bit more, and remember that on my less active days I shouldn't eat for an active person, if you know what I mean. I definately wasn't eating a proper balanced diet before, but since I started this challenge - well, from week 2 anyway, because week 1 wasn't a great example due to all the take-aways I had during moving - I've been doing pretty well at eating a balanced diet.

Part 2 was about making my Get Off Your Broom posts more witchy. My first thought here is, "do I need to then?" Magaly mentioned on her blog recently about how your witchyness would show through if you are a witch, because your posts will be about you. And, quite frankly, I'm happy to let that be the case. However, in the interests of witchyness showing through in my posts, I'll mention the meditation sessions I do after my Yoga session; partly as a sort of, "OK, now relax and get ready for the day," type of thing, and partly because I feel I need to get back in the habit of regular meditation sessions, and think that going from yoga exercises to a meditation session is an easy - and natural - thing to do. I also "try" to get a meditation session in before I settle for bed, but don't always manage it... Not that I always manage the morning yoga and meditation thing at the moment either, but at least the reason I don't always get to the morning one isn't because I fall asleep, which is what happens sometimes during the evening sessions. LOL!

OK, on to a review of this week...

Not too bad; I did cheat for dinner two nights this week and have take-away though; Tuesday because by the time we were able to start sorting dinner I was just really tired (should have done the prep work for dinner before my rehabilitation officer arrived) and last night... Well, I have no excuse, I was just lazy! But the rest of the time I've been pretty good, I think.

Some days I've done great and had plenty to drink, but other days... Yeah, not so much; some days I just forget and end up only having maybe 4 small drinks all day. If only I could forget to eat when I'm bored as easily as I forget to drink. ;)

Most days, great; 40 minute or longer walk in the morning, 20 minute walk in the evening. Except... There have been a couple of very wet days here this week, and Kero doesn't like to go out in the rain, which makes it difficult for me to, especially right now when I can't go by myself yet (still not had my mobility lessons). So since Kero refuses to go far and can't be left home by himself, and I can't go by myself... Well, some of the walks have been practically non-existant. I did try and persuade Kero to go for a walk, but he wasn't having it; we "maybe" made it for a 5 minute walk a couple of times. Like I said though, most of the time the weather has co-operated, and I've been able to do my walks just fine.

I think I did it maybe 3 times this week; better than I had been sometimes, but not what I was aiming for. But, at least I did it those few times, so at least it wasn't totally forgotten. What? I'm trying to think positive! ;)

I lost half a pound, lost half an inch from my waist, lost an inch from my hips, and lost an inch from my chest. So a total of half a pound and 2.5 inches lost this week!

Goals for next week:
*Drink better.
*Get the Yoga mat out more.
*Find something to do indoors in place of walking when walks aren't possible.

Other than that it's just a case of trying to avoid the take-aways, and trying to get walks in when I can. I'n still aiming for the long walk in the morning and short one in the evening, but sometimes the weather wont allow it.


The "Get Off Your Broom" chhallenge is hosted by Serenity over at "The Domestic Pagan"... Why not visit her? And don't forget to visit the other participents too!

Note to other participents: I've been visiting your blogs, but I can't comment due to word verification; it's nothing personal, it's just the way things are (the "listen and type" thing very rarely works, and is a lot of hastle to try and use anyway). So, please know that I'm 100% behind you in your quest to get off your broom and become a healthier you, but can't comment to say so.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Plans for Samhain 2011

There was something else I meant to post this past week; I'd said I'd do it last weekend, actually. But things happened, and now that post will have to wait until next week. Anyway, I know people wanted to know what I'll be doing - or have been doing - to celebrate Samhain this year, especially since I said I was going to be doing plenty to make up for not being able to do anything for Mabon. So...

I've already had a tea party (more on that over the next couple of days, since it was for the Witchy Tea Party that Anna is hosting this weekend), and made a spooky bandanna for Kero with some of the fabric I got in that recent Hobbycraft order (again, more on that to come in another post some time soon); I haven't decided yet what to do with the rest. And here's what I still plan to do to celebrate Samhain:

*Put up the decorations; I always leave them until the day before, especially since where I don't have many it doesn't take long to put them up.
*Carve pumpkins (we're getting 2).
*Carve a turnip.
*Make a Mushroom And Winter Veg Pie with the turnip.
*Make a Pumpkin Pie and some Pumpkin Spice Muffins.
*If there's enough pumpkin left over, make some Pasta With Pumpkin Sage Sauce.
*Drink some of Rosmerta's Pumpkin Juice.
*Take some time to read the braille tarot books I got a couple of months ago and have done little more than briefly glance at (I'd do a reading, but I haven't had an oppertunity to make my cards readable to me, so I can't).
*Do a private meditation ritual.
*Braid together 3 ribbons (white for life, black for death, and red for rebirth) while focusing on lost loved ones.

I'm combining the last two; I'll be starting off with the ritual where you bind the ribbons, and incorperating the meditation ritual in to it, since you're meant to meditate on lost loved ones while binding them anyway, so it seems logical to me to extend it by placing a meditation ritual in there.

I was going to bake Cookies in appropriate shapes; bats, ghosts, hands and cats. But I made some cat shaped cookies yesterday, and with the pumpkin pie and pumpkin spice muffins I'm making... Well, I really don't think we need more cookies; we'll have enough to eat for Samhain and the days surrounding it without adding cookies to the mix. So, I decided to forget about doing the cookies after all.

Anyway, we've also got a load of goodies for any kids who come Trick-Or-Treating. Not sure how many we'll get, but I know there are plenty of kids around, so since my Jack-O-Lanterns and other decorations will be up by then I'm hoping they'll come knocking; I like having trick-or-treaters come calling!

Happy 18th birthday Tamara!

Today is my niece Tamara's birthday. I don't know if she'll read this; in fact, she probably wont. But I wanted to wish her a very happy birthday on here anyway. Especially since... Today is not just her birthday, but her 18th birthday!

Happy 18th birthday, Tamara!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Story: Meagan's Samhain

By Kat Dyer

Once upon a time there was a little girl named Meagan. Meagan had a mommy and a daddy. Meagan had a big brother named Corwin. Meagan also had a beautiful black cat named Starweaver.

Meagan's mother made her bring Starweaver in every night. It was getting close to Halloween and some people were scared of black cats. Sometimes people who are scared do things they wouldn't do if they weren't so frightened. Meagan made sure that Starweaver came in at night where he would be safe and warm.

Meagan was excited about Halloween. Her parent's always held a big party. People would come in all kinds of costumes and they would play games. Many of them would come and go, leaving to go to other parties to show off their costumes. But there were a few people who stayed. After a certain time Meagan's parents would start cleaning up and making sure that their guests got home safely. The special guest would stay and help. Soon, only Meagan, her family and the special guests were left.

Now Meagan got even more excited. For Meagan and her family Halloween was more than just a time to dress up and play games. It was also Samhaine. Meagan and her family were Pagans and Samhaine was an important holiday for them. It was also their New Year. It celebrated the end of the Summer season and the beginning of the Winter. Tonight, her family and their friends would bid good-bye to the reign of the Lady and bid welcome to Her Consort, who would hold rule over the winter until the Lady came again in the spring at Beltaine.

This was the first year that Meagan was old enough to stay up and watch the rituals. Her parents had been teaching her about many religions so that when she grew up she would make a wise choice about how to worship. She was very excited about being allowed to watch the Samhaine ritual. She had taken a nap in the afternoon so that she would be able to stay awake.

Meagan went into her mother's bathroom. Meagan's mother Elizabeth was taking a bath in preparation. Elizabeth got out and put on her special robe. She always wore this robe to rituals. Meagan knew that some covens wore robes and some wore special costumes and some wore everyday clothes and some didn't wear anything at all! Meagan's mother said, "Are you ready Meagan? Why don't you take a quick shower and then I have a surprise for you." "What is it?, asked Meagan as she took off her Halloween costume. "You'll see when you're done," said her mother, "now hurry, you don't want to be late!"

Meagan turned on the water and stepped into the shower. And who should jump in with her but Starweaver! "Momma!" Meagan cried, "Look! Star wants to go to the ritual too!" Elizabeth laughed with her daughter, "Starweaver is more than welcome to come to the ritual. It wouldn't be the first time for him." Meagan looked at her cat, "Why didn't you tell me Star? You know all about it already!" She finished her shower and dried off. Meagan's mother held out a beautiful new robe, just Meagan's size. "Oh, Momma! A robe of my very own!", Meagan exclaimed. She felt very happy and proud as she slipped it on. Then she followed her mother out to the little grove in their backyard.

In their backyard was a little circle of trees. In the middle her parents had put up a stone altar. Usually the altar was empty but now there were things on it. Meagan stepped closer to see. Already on the altar were two chalices or cups, a sword, a book, a vessel of water and one of salt, a censor to hold incense and the God and Goddess figures which usually stayed on the little altar in her parent's bedroom. One of her parent's friends was placing a horned helm on the altar. "Would you like to help decorate the Circle?" he asked. The Circle had already been marked on the ground with a spear. Meagan asked, "What are we putting around the Circle?" Meagan's brother Corwin said, "We are putting autumn flowers, pine-cones and pumpkins." She remembered having seen some pumpkins in the garage earlier and had wondered what they were for. Meagan and Corwin placed the flowers and pine-cones around the Circle. Some of the pumpkins were too heavy for them to lift by themselves so the adults helped put them around too.

Soon the grove was ready. Everyone was wearing a robe. Meagan's mother was wearing a white robe and so was their friend Jeremy. This year Elizabeth and Jeremy had been chosen by the Coven to be Priestess and Priest for the group. Each Coven has different rules about who is in charge of things and what they wear. In the Coven that Meagan's parents belonged to the Priest and Priestess wear white and the others may choose from green, yellow, red or blue. Meagan's robe was green and Corwin's robe was blue just like their father Michael's robe.

Michael would tease Meagan and Corwin saying, "I wear blue so that no one can see me in the shadows." He would always smile when he said it. Some of the Coven members wore beautiful jewelry. Jennifer was wearing a silver circlet and a pentagram necklace. Robert wore a torque, which is a kind of neck decoration, and several rings with funny writing on them. Meagan recognized some of the letters as runes. She was studying runes with her father.

Soon a horn sounded and the ceremony started. Meagan paid close attention. Her favorite part came at the end which was called Cakes and Ale. Everyone ate little cakes and drank mead or juice. They all sat around and talked about the things they were studying and what they would like to learn about later. Meagan asked about the incense they had used. Jennifer told her that it was made by a Coven member who couldn't be there that night. She said that they would grind together different herbs to make incense that they burned on a special kind of charcoal. Their Coven had a different kind of incense for every kind of ceremony. Meagan remembered that her parent's had special incense for the house too. They would burn it during the day and it made the house smell good.

Sometimes Meagan's friends would ask her why her house always smelled so good. Meagan had to be careful sometimes about what she said to her friends. Her parents had told her that not everyone liked the way that Pagans worship. It was better for her to be careful about what she said until she knew how her friends felt about other religions. She would not want to make her friends upset or to make them feel bad. Meagan had one friend, Cindy, that she could talk about her religion to. Cindy and her family were Christians but her mother was also an herbalist and didn't mind the things that Cindy learned about at Meagan's house. Meagan's parents would trade herbs with Cindy's mother and Meagan sometimes heard them talking about religion together.

When the ritual was over everyone helped to clean up the grove. Meagan was very happy to have been allowed to stay up. Her mother said that she could come to the next ritual which would be a Full Moon ritual. They would also have a guest who was interested in the Pagan religion. Some Covens have rules that their rituals cannot be spoken of to those who have not promised to keep them secret. Some of these rules came from the times when Pagans were outlawed or hurt by some Christians. The Coven that Meagan's family belonged to did not have any rules like this but they were still very careful about who they shared their rituals with. Some people are afraid of Pagans and as you know, people who are afraid sometimes do strange things.

Meagan went inside as people were leaving to go home. She took off her robe and got into her nightgown. Elizabeth came to tuck her into bed. "I'll go put your robe in the place we keep ours so it will be ready for the next ceremony. Did you enjoy yourself tonight?" she asked as Meagan snuggled under the blanket. "Oh yes, Momma. It was wonderful. I think I want to be a Pagan when I grow up." murmured Meagan. Her mother laughed, "Well, now is not the time to decide such an important issue. I think you can wait a few years. You may change your mind later. Sleep tight and dream well little one." She kissed Meagan good night and turned out her light. Meagan sighed as she thought about the good time she had had at the party and at the ritual. Just then Starweaver decided to jump up on her bed. As Meagan curled up on her side to go to sleep Starweaver nestled into the pillow beside her and began to purr.

It had been a good day.

(Click here to see the page I got the story "Meagan's Samhain" from).

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Samhain activity and ritual ideas (FD)

Bob for Apples

Drink apple cider warmed and spiced with cinnamon to honor the dead.

Bury an apple or pomegranate in the garden as food for spirits passing by on their way to be reborn.

Carve a Jack-o-Lantern. Pick a spirit candle.
This is a white candle anointed with patchouli oil. Say:
"With this candle and by its light,
welcome you spirits this Samhain night."
Place it inside the jack-o'-lantern.

Set out a Mute Supper.

Have a New Years party to celebrate the turning of the wheel!

Make a mask of your shadow self.

Make a besom, or witches broom.

Make a witches cord as an expression of what you hope to manifest in the year ahead. Enjoy the trick or treating of the season.

Wear costumes that reflect what we hope or wish for in the upcoming year.

Make resolutions, write them on a small piece of parchment, and burn in a candle flame, preferably a black votive candle within a cauldron on the altar. This is like New Year's resolutions; as for many Samhain is the New Year.

Divination - Samhain is the beginning of the pagan year; divinations were done to see the future of the coming year. It is said that this is the time of the Crone and it is incumbent upon us to see whatever wisdom she is willing to part with on our behalf. Many types of divination are practiced for Samhain. Dark Mirrors - Fire or Water Scrying - Tarot cards - and of course the Crystal Ball.

Make masks and costumes representing the different aspects of the Goddess and God, and wear them to your rituals, or use them to decorate your altar area.

Toll "Lost in the Dark" bells.

Try hanging out with friends and dress up to go see the Rocky Horror Picture show (I've never done this, but some of my friends do!!)

Private Meditation

Hold a Private Ritual and focus on the traditional themes for Samhain, such as Life, Death and Rebirth.

Try learning a new form of divination to practice and then try to see what the coming year has in store for you.

Clip articles from the newspaper that have things to do with paganism and put them in a scrapbook.

Eat some candy!!

Host a Halloween party for your friends and neighbors

Volunteer at a Publicly sponsored Haunted House

Write an essay or editorial to the newspaper to educate people on the real associations and practices of Halloween and witches (pagans, wiccans, etc)

Hold a Group Ritual with people of similar practices

Carve Pumpkins with all sorts of neat designs.

Go Trick or Treating!

Read stories with a Halloween theme. The Meagan Stories are wonderful for this.

Talk about the history of Samhain with your child(ren). Don't just start offering them a lot of information that they may or may not need to know. If they ask questions, give them simple, but honest answers.

(Click here to see the page I got this list of ideas from).

3 days before Samhain, decorate an empty jar with pins, ribbons, feathers, confetti, tissue paper, etc. You may also want to add a photo of a deceased loved one on the jar. Write a letter to this loved one telling them about something you yearn for. Choose a serious need rather than a frivolous wish. Burn the letter and put the ashes in the Yearnin’ Urn. Light a candle next to the urn and let it burn for 3 days. On the night of Samhain, release the ashes in to the wind.

Take a set of ribbons –one white, one black, and one red. Say: White for life, black for death, red for rebirth. Bind these strands together remembering those you have lost. Then braid or knot the ribbons together. Focusing on your lost loved ones. When you are done, place them on your personal altar.

Do a divination ritual.

(The above ideas were adapted from the ideas on the "Samhain ritual ideas" page on Selenai's Blog; click here to read the page).

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

This post is just to say... Sorry! (FD)

Sorry! I spent most of yesterday either outside - enjoying the beautiful weather we've had most of the time; right up until late this afternoon when we had a storm... Not that I mind storms - or preparing or cooking food (made more bread for one thing), then I spent a large chunk of yesterday evening doing a healing ritual for someone who I felt could use a little extra healing energy, and today just got away from me, so I haven't had a chance to get to your blogs. I would have come and checked them this afternoon, but my new rehabilitation officer was here (and, if you're wondering; she's really nice) and by the time she left it was time to sort dinner. Anyway... Sorry; I'll catch up on your blogs tomorrow, right now I have a couple of craft projects I really need to work on (one of which needs to be done before the weekend, and the rest of which need to be done before the end of November). I'll tell you more about anything that needs to be elaborated on another time, and will post what I was going to post today tomorrow instead. For now, sorry!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Birthdays for today and last week

I missed a couple of friends' birthdays, and there are a couple happening today, so I want to catch up...

October 17th was Max (Pia's youngest)'s 1st birthday.
October 19th was Pia's birthday.
And today (October 24th) is both Barb's and Louise's birthdays.

Happy belated birthday to Max and Pia, and happy birthday to Barb and Louise!

Also, happy birthday to anyone else who had your birthday in October but didn't get a "happy birthday" from me!

I hope you had - or are having - a fantastic birthday!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

This is for you if you need it to be

It's the kind of day where you think of the coming Winter; there's a cold chill in the air, and a sharp bite to the wind. The sun is still shining though, as though it's determined to hang on for just as long as it can; determined to remind you it will always be there, giving our planet life, and doing its best to keep us warm.

It's days like these when thoughts of family and friends begin to be foremost in many people's minds; the holidays are here, and the holiday time always makes people think of their loved ones; those who are still with us, and those who are not. This Samhain I will be taking the time to pause between the fun activities I'm planning to do to celebrate. I'll be pausing to think about those people; especially those we have lost. Not just the people though... The pets too!

In the meantime... I know some people who aren't doing too well right now - healthwise or otherwise - who could use those extra thoughts, so I'm writing this to send positive thoughts out there for them; I'll be doing it personally too, but maybe my writing this will strengthen the energies? There is, after all, power in the written word; that's why you should always be careful what you put out there for others to read. That's what I believe, anyway.

So, I'm sending out positive thoughts to those who need them; whether you need them because life is tough right now, need them because you're unwell, or whatever. Just know that someone in the world is thinking of you, and hoping things get better for you!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Get Off Your Broom: Week 3 reviewed and week 2's challenge (LBE and FD)

Time for my weekly check-in for the Get Off Your Broom challenge; which I would link to on Serenity's blog, but with the issues with commenting I keep having on embedded comment forms, and the word verification accessability issues... Well, we've been through this before. But, for any new readers, if either of those things causes issues with me commenting on your blog, then that will explain the lack of comments from me. I will do my best to comment on the blogs I can of my fellow Get Off Your Broom challenge members though; just bare with me people, and remember... Word verification is an issue for even sighted people, and nothing but a cause of headaches and frustration for the blind blogging community! Just saying!


This past week, Serenity set us the challenge of learning about food cravings and deciding if we should give in to them or just try and ignore them.

So, what are food cravings?

According to this article on Wise Geek:

"Food cravings are intense yearnings for a certain type of food. Sweet or salty
foods are common food cravings as are protein foods such as meat or cheese. Most food cravings are thought to be caused by hormones, fluctuations in blood sugar levels, emotional and psychological reasons or sometimes by nutritional deficiencies."

The article goes on to say that:

"We do not always crave foods that are good for us. Stress, depression and a lack of sleep can cause "junk" food cravings. We sometimes may turn to "comfort foods" that we associate with pleasant feelings and overeat these foods when we are stressed, depressed or tired. Food cravings for quick sugar energy, alcohol or foods or drinks containing caffeine or carbohydrates are common when we are tired and want to feel energized.

Fluctuation in blood sugar levels may cause food cravings. Hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, can be caused from not getting enough calories or not eating at regular intervals. Hypoglycemia's affect on the body can be food cravings as the body feels as though it is starving.

Food cravings tend to lessen if we eat regular balanced meals and get all the vitamins and minerals that we need in our diets. Exercise may also help control food cravings by keeping the body in a more relaxed and fit state. Regular exercise has been shown to increase endorphins in the blood and this often leads to a feeling of well being and lowered tension in the body."

In other words, cravings are our body's way of telling us something is lacking from our diet. For example - as mentioned in the article I've taken quotes from above:

"Some nutrition experts state that some food cravings for chocolate may be a sign of a B vitamin deficiency."

So, what does this all mean?

It means that, in my opinion, you shouldn't ignore food cravings, but should try to take the following steps when cravings occur:

1. Think about why you could be having the craving; are you tired and in need of energy? Are you bored? Are you feeling overly emotional?

2. Think of alternative ways you can deal with the craving; would a substitute food item work? Do you just need to find something else to occupy yourself for a bit?

As an example:

You have dinner at 5:00 pm, and about 6:00 pm you're craving some chocolate. Ask yourself what you had for dinner. Let's say it was a full roast dinner; meat (or meat substitute) with roast potatoes and a variety of mixed vegetables. Chances are you covered the main vitamins in there, so you probably don't need the chocolate for that. And chances are the dinner was nice and filling, so you aren't just hungry. This means you're probably just bored. The result? Go and find something to do, and see how you feel in an hour or two. It's quite likely that if you find something to do then you'll forget about your chocolate craving anyway.


Say you had breakfast at 7:00 am, and it's now 10:00 am. You had a bad night, and you're tired, and now you're craving something sweet, and desperate for some coffee. Alright. It's been a few hours since breakfast, and you need something for energy, so what can you have? How about a nice fruit smoothie? Make sure it's full of berries, which are naturally sweet, full of all sorts of vitamins and such, and they'll help to give you the energy to make it through the rest of the morning.

See what I'm saying here?

It's all about eating regularly, evaluating whether a craving is valid or should be ignored, and trying to act on it in the best way you can while also trying to eat healthily.

Of course, I'm sure you'll agree that this is all easier said than done (and I'm personally rubbish at it; when I'm craving chocolate I usually have some). That's the theory of how things should go though, I think.

OK, on to the review of how this week has been for me:

I've done really well with eating. I did make some cookies on Wednesday, and - I admit it - I ate a couple. But I'm still impressed with my eating this week. Why? Because I'm doing a lot better than I expected to. I've had homemade meals all week (as you'll see if you read yesterday's post, I even made my own bread) and they've been "proper" meals (no microwave meals, no chips and, etc). Plus, I only had a couple of the cookies, and only took them one at a time. In fact, there are still some left, and I only made a small batch (I think there ended up being about 18 cookies). Besides, I did say the goal here was to learn moderation and not to diet, which means there's nothing wrong with me having the cookies, because I had them in moderation; only 1 at a time, and I only ate 2 each day, despite passing the cookie plate every time I went in the kitchen. So, I think that was pretty good! Also, I didn't snack much between meals, because I was so busy; I'm trying to break the habit with smaller regular meals anyway. But - as I said last week - I'm a boredom and comfort eater. Well, I've been happy and busy, so everything I've had has been planned. Even those cookies were worked in to my meals (1 was part of an afternoon snack, another part of my supper, etc). In fact, this week I've had more trouble listening to my body reminding me it's time for my meal than anything. Maybe - while I get used to the eating routine I'm trying to set for myself - I should set an alarm for when it's time for my next meal? It would help me break up activities anyway!

I've done better; still not the amount I should be, but better... I remember to get a drink when I go in the kitchen most of the time; it's just a shame I then forget to drink it a lot of the time. Seriously! Several times I've made a drink, left the cup on the worktop while putting away the juice, or putting the spoon from the herbal tea in the washing up bowl, and forgotten all about my drink until a little while later when I'll either remember it, or be reminded about it by Kelly when he goes out there and asks if I plan on drinking my drink any time today. I've definately gotten a lot more fluid in me this past week though, which I'm sure my body is greatful for. And, before anyone says anything; try and get me to drink plain water, and you'll be fighting a losing battle... I have to be desperate to drink plain water, so the way to encourage me to drink more is not to shove plain water under my nose. Make me herbal tea or give me fruit juice and I'll do my best to drink well for you, but say it has to be plain water and you can forget it! Water doesn't taste like anything, and I like to taste what goes in my mouth - and enjoy the taste. So, I'm sticking to drinks with taste to them, thank you very much!

I originally wanted to aim for three walks a day, but I was left with a choice; a decent length walk in the morning, then a shorter one in the evening, allowing me to be able to spend time enjoying trips to the park and the seaside, or go in to town. Or, three shorter walks, and not really much time to enjoy outings, because there's no time to do much around the walks. I went for the first option. So, in the morning (after the postman comes) we've been going for a decent walk (40 minutes plus; often more, like a couple of times when I was walking by the seaside for about 90 minutes with Kero) and in the evening a shorter walk (about 20 minutes). OK, I didn't go yesterday (if you read yesterday's post you'll know why; I was hurting and feeling unwell after ending up with a bruised hip from a run in with a door, a headache from a run in with a wall, and a bad knee that I don't remember how I hurt), but every other day - yes, including today - I've gone for the walks!

I actually got the mat out a couple of times this week. I would have done it more, but I was feeling awful, and was hurting so bad from the run in with the door that I didn't dare (and hurt too much to care what anyone thought of that). I don't hurt as much today though, so I've promised myself I'll allow myself the weekend to get to feeling better, then the mat comes out each morning again.

I did put 1lb back on (I blame the extra drinks), but I lost 1.5 inches from my hips, 2 inches from my waist, and 1 inch from my chest (all of which were much needed). So, despite the 1lb weight gain, I'm OK with my measurements this week. I mean, I lost a whole 4.5 inches from me this week, that has to count for something, right?

My goals for this week are as follows:

*Make sure to get the 1 long walk and 1 short walk in every day.
*Get the yoga mat out every day.
*Remember to drink those drinks.
*Work on meal routine; set alarm if necessary.

OK, that's it from me... Go visit the other participents of the Get Off Your Broom challenge! And - to those people - I hope you're doing well with the challenges you've set yourself. I also hope you know I'm right here beside you, routing for you; we can do this... We can reach our goals!

Friday, October 21, 2011

TV shows, Friday and food (FD)

I found somewhere online that allows you to watch episodes of TV series for free; somewhere that actually works over here. It's called TV Links, and it does have the "Secret Circle" show on it. I watched the second episode today, so now I'm only two episodes behind (episode four was the one that would have been on the TV Wednesday evening). The site actually offers quite a few TV series; some of them I haven't seen on TV in years! So now I have somewhere I can watch any TV shows that aren't shown on the channels the freeview box offers. YAY!


It's been quite chilly here the past few days, but nice and sunny; the type of weather that both reminds you of Summer and warns you that Winter is just around the corner at the same time. Proper Autumn weather I call it!

I've not been out today though. I'm not feeling too great (I think I'm just a bit run down from doing so much the past few weeks). Kelly took Kero out by himself earlier so I could have a day off from needing to do much. Sometimes you just need a rest day, and today is mine... If anyone doesn't like it, tough! I don't feel well, I'm hurting (hit my hip on a door handle and bruised it, hit my head on a wall - which might be the main reason I don't feel too well - and hit my knee on... Well, I'm not sure what I hit my knee on, but it hurt) and I deserve a day off to recover!


Last night for dinner I decided to try a recipe I found a little while back for pasta with pumpkin sage sauce (which is why I was up to my elbows in pumpkin yesterday). It was a very tasty recipe! I'm having the leftovers for dinner tonight.

Actually, I've been doing a lot of baking this week. Remember how I said I was making as much as possible from scratch? Well, I'm keeping my word!

Since we didn't do much for Mabon we decided to do a "Thanksgiving dinner" on Monday. Kelly had a glazed ham, and - since I don't eat meat - I had a stuffed butternut squash (I used only the stuffed butternut squash part of that recipe) and glazed parsnips (I glazed the parsnips with a glaze I'm calling a honey nut glaze). Our dinners were served with roast potatoes, carrots and sprouts.

Then, on Tuesday, I used Jazz's sandwich bread recipe to make some bread.

I made some large bread rolls:

(There were three rolls, but there are only two in the photo, because... Well, it smelled so good I couldn't resist having one as soon as they were out of the oven!)

And a couple of loaves of bread:

Officially the recipe was for white bread, but I wanted wholemeal bread, and I figured it wouldn't hurt to try it with wholemeal flour instead, and it seemed to work just fine. I think,, for my first time doing bread totally from scratch (no bread machine; I gave it to my Dad), I did great. I should have left it to proof a bit longer in the tin though, because my loaves aren't as big as they should have been. But it smells like bread, and it tastes like bread, so it works for me! ;)

I also made some plum jam using a jam recipe I'd had for a while:

I should have left it to cook a bit longer; it's a bit runny (it's more of a lumpy syrup than a jam, really), but it tastes good, and for my first attempt making jam I don't think I did too badly with it. Made quite a mess on the cooker though... Oops! Next time I know to cook it a bit longer, and to watch the temperature I have it on so it doesn't boil over (which is what caused the big mess on the cooker).

I also made some applesauce:

I made this after the jam, and had learned from the jam about cooking it a bit longer (and not having the pot up so high), so the applesauce worked great; it's the right consistancy, and tastes pretty good, so I'm happy with it. And Kelly is happier with it too; I didn't make such a mess with it, LOL!

And I hope to do a lot more baking in the future! :)


That's it for now; I'll try to keep up with your blogs, but I have loads of projects to do (holiday cards to make, stuff planned for Samhain, etc), so if I get behind again - since I only just caught up from last time, lol - sorry!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Moving - Part 5: random things to wrap it all up (LBE and FD)

Today's post is later than the others because it's the only one I've actually sat down to write on the day, and I was up to my elbows in pumpkin earlier so I wasn't really in a position to be writing a blog post; laptops and pumpkins should probably not be dealt with in unison, after all... Especially not if I'm the one dealing with them! ;)


First - before I wrap things up about the move - I would like to point out, for the benifit of anyone who doesn't follow his blog and is interested, that Kelly did a post about Hastings week and posted the photos he managed to get on Saturday on his own blog (we agreed it made sense, because he took them, and I always have loads to post on my blog, but he rarely does; most of his posts are movie reviews). So, if you want to see the post, go over to Kelly's blog and check out the post entitled "Hastings week photos" that he did earlier this afternoon.

OK, back to my own post...

For those who are dying to see something inside my property, here's a sneak peak...

(Most of my kitchen utensils on the counter in the tubs they're stored in).

I got the shot by accident when I was trying to get a shot you'll see in a bit, but figured I'd post it anyway. What? I didn't say it was a great sneak peak! ;)


When we arrived there was a card from my Grandma waiting for us on the mat, and within a few days we got another card; a card made by Jeannie, but sent to us by Iggy. Here are both cards; you should be able to tell which is which, I think...

Thank you Grandma, and thank you to Jeannie and Iggy too!

I got another bit of nice post a few days later...

Hobbycraft had issues with their site not long ago, and the result was that it took three weeks for me to get my order, some of it was missing when it did come, and communication was all but non-existant. By way of an apology I was given a voucher that entitled me to £20 (roughly $40) worth of free stuff, and free shipping. So, the night before I left I put in an order - £20.74 worth of stuff, and it cost me 74p - and hoped that this time they would do better. They did; here's my goodies:

*Black spider web patterned fabric
*a wooden bat decoration
*black paint
*a hand shaped cookie cutter
*a candle making starter kit
*a plastic container with compartments in it

I don't think you can see the container or the candle making kit; the other stuff is on top of them. Also, this is the shot I was trying for when I got the shot of the utensils.

The candle making kit I just wanted, but have been reluctant to buy one due to price (they're a lot of money for what little comes with them). I wanted it for the moulds more than anything. Anyway, this one was almost half price, and - because of my voucher - cost me nothing, so I figured, why not?

The container I needed; the cardboard one I have that my stuff was in being stored isn't in great shape - OK, it's falling apart - so I need to get my stuff moved in to something else so it can be retired. I figured while it was free would be a good time to try the ones I'd been looking at for size; they're perfect, so I just need to get more now (which I'll do when money allows).

As for the other stuff... Well, Samhain is coming up, and I have some things I'm sorting for it (more on those another day). Besides, they sounded cool!

OK, away from crafts, and on to other things...

I said I'd tell you how Kero came to meet the landlord, so, that's what I'm about to do!

We had Sky TV at our old place. We paid for all the channels to make sure we had every single movie channel, and it cost us £52 a month (wich is somewhere around $100). Because of the price (which still keeps rising) I kept it going. I couldn't help thinking though that it would be cheaper to have something like Netflix or Blockbuster. But there were all those channels, so we left it (despite the amount of times I couldn't help thinking it really wasn't worth the money). But, anyway...

When we moved here we noticed an absence of Sky dishes... Wondering why that is? Yes, we wondered too. We soon found out though.

This area is considered a "concervation area" so Sky dishes aren't allowed on the front of the buildings. With the landlord and local county council giving permission we could have one on the side of the property or up on the chimney, but only with permission from both parties. However, the side of the building doesn't have a big enough gap for the dish, and the chimeny is in a position where the signal wouldn't be great (also, none of us - Kelly, the landlord and myself - like the idea of sending the Sky guy up 4 stories to climb on the roof just so we can "try" and get a decent signal). The other option is to just stick with the TV arial; so a freeview box, which has many of the Sky channels, but not all of them, and hardly any of the movie channels. But, it only needs an arial, and it costs nothing after you buy the box (hence being called a "freeview" box).

The landlord was OK with us having the dish on the chimney - as long as none of the wires had to go through the inside of the part of the property he lives in - but, as I said, none of us felt comfortable with the idea of sending a Sky engineer up on the roof. Plus, we don't fancy the fuss of going to get permission from the local council.

Personally, I took it as a sign that I should do what I'd been considering doing anyway; cancel the Sky subscription and buy a freeview box. So, that's what we're doing.

I was going to get a Netflix subscription for my movies, but apparently they aren't available in my area "yet" so I can't. Blockbuster is meant to be good though (they just don't - to my knowledge - offer the option to watch the movies on your computer; unless you're doing so because your computer has a DVD drive).

There are a couple of TV shows I watch, but most of them I've seen several times and they're available on DVD anyway (some - like Buffy - I even already have on DVD), and the only other one I know is available to watch online somewhere (just got to find the link again) and it will probably come out on DVD at some point too. The "other one" is that new series, "The Secret Circle," which I caught the first episode of before we moved and enjoyed, so I want to watch it. Like I said though, we found it online, so if I find the link again I can watch it on there. Plus, most TV series come out on DVD in the end anyway!

So... It was because of the Sky discussion that Kero ended up meeting the landlord. And, as I said in an earlier post, the landlord adores him!

Actually, just about everyone seems to adore him; he's loving the attention, LOL!


We moved in here on the 5th of October, Kelly went back to Wales on the 10th of October, the removal truck arrived on the 11th of October (and after Kelly saw it off he went and handed in the keys for the old place, then got on a train to come back here), and we already have almost everything unpacked. We would have it all done, but for one thing I'm on strike (I need a break from unpacking boxes) and for another thing we need to buy something for our CDs to go in before we can unpack them.

OK, well... I'm sure there was something else I was going to post about in part 5, but I honestly can't think what it was. Oh well, if I think of it I can just post it seporately. For now though that just about gets you caught up on everything to do with the move; anything else will come in other posts (either because I thought it should, or because I've forgotten what it is and haven't told you about it, LOL!)

Hastings Week 2011

I got this bit of text from the internet about Hastings week: "14th October (now Hastings Day) was the date in 1066 when King Harold lost the Battle of Hastings. William Duke of Normandy, who was using Hastings as his base, then claimed the crown and changed the way England was governed forever. He also gave us the English language. In 1966 the 900th anniversary was celebrated and it was such a success that Hastings Borough Council decided to mark the date every year as Hastings Day. For a time it was just a day of activities but it has grown over the years to become a week-long celebration of art, music, sport, events, and exhibitions." The text came from I went to try to get photos of the fireworks that happened on the 15th for Tori but did not get them. I did get some photos though. And here they are. This first photo is some florescent tubes in a stall near to where the fireworks were. I just thought they looked cool. And these are photos of the procession with torches (they had real flaming torches) that were walking through the town near to the ocean where the firework display was. They were carrying some guy in a big hat but I do not know for sure why. Tori thinks she saw somewhere when she was looking online for when the fireworks would be that he was winner of the re-enactment of the battle that they did up at the place called Battle (which is where the actual battle for the battle of Hastings happened) but we don't know for sure if that is true or not. Those are all the photos that I was able to get. Sorry. Kelly

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Moving - part 4: in town (LBE & FD)

Continuing from yesterday...

First, a couple of photos that should have been in part 2, but didn't make it because I needed to ask Kelly about them:

This photo of the sunrise was taken not far from our new place; just before you get on to the road that takes you in to the town, I think. I have no idea when it was taken though... I'm guessing when Kelly took the camera with him to get the shots that you'll see later on in this post. Anyway... Here's the photo:

And this we think is some kind of old fashioned clock tower. It kind of looks like a cross between a church and a clock tower, but it's not big enough to be a church. Anyway, it's up the road from us, and Kelly thought it was cool so grabbed a photo of it. And here's the photo:


During our trips up town Kelly mentioned that a few of the shops are nicely decorated for Halloween/Samhain. So I asked him to grab some photos for me to share.

These first couple are of the decorations in the window of the fruit and veg shop...

Spooky cobwebs:


An old fashioned weight scale covered with cobwebs:

And these are from the window of the hairdressers...

A cobweb covered skeleton:

Apparently you can see Kelly's reflection in the window in the above photo, and the reflection of a church. It's no ordinary church though; it's been converted in to flats (apartments) by the look of it. I bet those people have no trouble finding their way home... LOL!

Pumpkins and gourds in the hairdresser window:

During another trip up town we visited a shop that we went to just for Kero; the shop where we got those calming dog treats I mentioned in the post I did early Sunday morning. It's called "The Dog Biscuits," and here it is:

I just love their sign:

("Dogs welcome, but must be accompanied by well behaved owners").

Kero made friends with the owners as well as their cattle dog, Jenna.

(Sorry, no Jenna photos).

We got him those calming treats I already mentioned; they're called "Calm Dog"... Rather appropriately. We also got him some dental bones called "Fab Fangs."

And we got him the red and green tartan bandanna he's wearing in this photo:

You should see him after we give him the calming treats; it's really funny!

They take 15 minutes to get in to their system, and we can tell when the 15 minutes are up; he goes from hyper hound to dopey dog. When we give him the treat he throws it around and plays with it before eating it. By the time the 15 minutes are up there's no way he'd be up for doing that; it's all he can do to keep his eyes open to watch where we are. He had more energy after the exhausting journey from the old place to here than he has after one of those treats... So, I guess they work well. LOL!


There's a Frenchh market stall in town every Friday (which is where I've been getting my French pastries). They do fantastic food, and their prices aren't too bad.

There's also a craft market there on a Saturday, but we haven't had an oppertunity to go and have a look yet; too busy doing other things. I do plan to go and check it out soon though, and I'm sure I'll tell you about it when I do. :)

Actually, there are LOADS of places we want to check out; there's a lot to do around here, and we plan on doing as much of it as possible!

And Kero doesn't mind... The more we're outside, the more he gets to be outside. ;)

Right... Well, that's it for today; come back tomorrow for the final part.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Moving - part 3: the seaside (LBE and FD)

We've had a few walks to the beach - which I'm sure I don't need to tell you is an enjoyable thing to do - and I'm sure some of you at least have been eagerly awaiting these photos, so, here they are:

First, the view of the ocean from the top of our road:

(The above photo was taken from only a short distance from our gate).

Now, a couple of shots of the ocean from down the road:

(Taken a little way up the road from the hotel mentioned in yesterday's post, I think).

OK, we're just about here, but I need to sit down for a minute...

Kero and I are now at the beach:

Kero says, "Look at all the birds; a bit too big for me to be chasing though... I think this is one time I'll just watch the birds and not try chasing them!"

Watch out for the poles as you walk along the promonade...

I'm not sure, but I think the tide's coming in...

...Look at those waves...

The first couple of photos of the above batch were taken the first Thursday evening we were here, I think. The rest of the above batch were taken the following morning, and the next batch of photos I'm going to show you were taken this past Friday.

It was a beautiful Autumn day...

Perfect for going to the beach...

...Watching/listening to the waves crashing against the shore...

...And perfect for being out in a boat too, apparently; this person thought so anyway...

For my part, first I walked along the promonade with Kero - while Kelly went to grab some fresh veg for dinner - and enjoyed a French pastry. Then I allowed Kero to persuade me to walk down the beach until we almost reached the water (he chickened out just before we reached the water's edge; shame... I wouldn't have minded a bit of paddling). It wasn't a long walk, but it was hard work. Why? Pebbly beach and sandals... Yeah, it was interesting (and a little painful). I can't have minded it that much though; I did it again the following morning. LOL!

One final photo for you today... One of the birds Kero was trying to figure out whether to chase (like he usually does with birds) or hide from... A seagull!

There are two ways to get to the beach from here.

One way takes you past the hotel. If you go that way you can be there in about 5 minutes (unless you're walking Kero, in which case you'll be lucky to make it in less than 10, because he just has to sniff everything thoroughly). It's a quieter route too.

The other way takes you through town. If you go that way you're looking at probably a 10 minute walk (even without Kero, LOL). 10 minutes still isn't too bad though.

We've actually been to the seaside pretty much every day, and gone actually on to the beach most times. We have to make the most of that; Kero does especially, because dogs are only allowed on the beach from October 1st to April 30th.

We'll still be allowed to walk him near there, but he wont be allowed on the beach itself.

Anyway, I'm meant to be ending this, LOL!

Come back tomorrow for part 4...