Do nothing

I saw this image this morning on Facebook, and knew I had to share it!

The world was loud enough BEFORE the pandemic. The extra noise created by Covid and vaccines and and and has become so overwhelming for so many!

When I saw this picture, I smiled because that is me next to that tree, except I am a grownup (apparently) and a woman 😛

This image is also how I feel when I am next to my 30 kilogram male rescue dog, and the little 6 kilogram rescue dog is cuddled up next to him 😉

So this is a friendly reminder that sometimes the something we need to do is absolutely nothing.

Don’t scroll on social media, don’t read your texts or even respond (in fact, switch that cellphone off 😛 ), don’t even turn on your television/computer/laptop.

Just be.

Switch off, and do absolutely nothing. Even if just for ten minutes a day!

They say that making a conscious effort to do this every day not only leads to a calmer and more peaceful ‘you’ but it can also make your brain work better and increase your efficiency!

For me? It’s about my love for trees and my ‘furbabies’ 😛 Seriously though, I don’t know about you, but with all the noise, I sure do love some peace!

Have a great weekend, everyone 😉

Looking Up

The little Yorkie from down the road had come to visit, again. My dog was delighted. They make the strangest pair.

She’s three kilograms of fluff and fun; He’s twenty two kilograms of boisterous activity.

And yet, somehow, they just seem to get along so very well that he won’t eat his breakfast until she has dropped by and eaten her share first.

Yes. Can you believe that?

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Spring Cleaning

I’ve been missing in action. For me, it’s been a difficult time – but as usual, there is always some amusement to be had from difficult periods in our lives. My last blog post was very significant to my absence thereafter – which is rather funny (both funny ha ha, and funny weird) because I didn’t plan it that way at all.
Another thing that I found rather amusing is the fact that I have been ‘M.I.A’ for the entire season of Winter here where I live.
So perhaps this was made for me…….
hiber

The only problem is that I haven’t been asleep the entire time…..although then again, maybe I have. Sleep is more than just eyes closed and snoring….it sometimes applies to a dormant soul and a closed heart – just some food for thought.

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It’s Raining Animals!

Most little girls dream of a four-poster bed. Let’s face it: even if you’re a tomboy, a four-poster bed is pretty cool. It acts as a really large tent where you can hide out and plot your revenge on older brothers who left you ‘hiding’ in the cupboard for the past three hours, instead of coming to ‘seek you out’ as promised.
I have to admit that I leaned more towards princess than tomboy as a girl, but I guess I’ve had my moments – and being a single mom for almost ten years, I have found myself on a learning curve of ‘being a guy’ and doing the ‘guy stuff’.

As a young Princess, I plotted many revenges against my brothers – and they usually ended with ‘to the dungeon’, and ‘off with their heads’ – but since they are both very much alive and well, I am sure you understand that all of this was just fantasy.

As was the four-poster bed. I’ve never had one. My grandmother did make me one for my doll when I was about eight though, so I was pretty lucky.

But did you know?

The four-poster bed originated to afford protection from things falling on people?

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‘Wood’ you believe it?

“What are you eating this time?”

Yes, this is a question I regularly ask. And I ask it of my dog. If you have a dog, have ever owned a dog, or have ever been a regular visitor to a house where a dog resides, then you will understand my need to be continuously asking this question.

Unfortunately, for the most part, the answer comes in the form of a screeched,
“Drop that!” It’s usually issued in reference to the item in his mouth : a shoe, an eraser, a pen, underwear, kitchen towel – you get the picture.

Yesterday was interesting.

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Love is in the air

Now that the retail industry has completely exploited our desire to celebrate what we view as special occasions, Valentine’s Day is finally here.

Cupid has not shot his arrow through my heart – there’s no ‘love mate’ for this day.

(Who on earth thought that a chubby baby shooting arrows that can cause grievous bodily harm was a great way to depict the love of Valentine’s Day anyway?)

I have not woken to roses and gifts, and there are no beautifully heart-shaped chocolates awaiting my taste buds. A card telling me how special I am is nowhere to be found.

Am I upset about this? Do I feel unloved? Does it make a difference to me?

Not. At. All.

I get told I am loved, daily. My best friend/sister never lets a day go by without telling me that she loves me; my son never lets sleep capture his weary body without telling me he loves me; my daughter can’t help herself and tells me at least three times a day. Even the dog is in on the action, and rewards my return home after short outings with hugs; cuddles me in the evening; and hops up when my alarm goes off every morning to jump on me and plant a wet, sloppy kiss on my cheek.

My son sends me the odd message – usually a picture he has found – to show me that he is grateful and thankful for all that I do, and to tell me he loves me. My daughter makes me an envelope containing a letter or a handmade card, at least once a month, declaring her love for her mom.

We often share chocolates and treats with each other.
Why do we need ONE day in which to do it?

“Yes, but….you’re single.”

Indeed, I am. But even when I had a significant other, we didn’t participate in the Valentines hype. If you cannot show me little expressions of love throughout the year, then please don’t jump on the bandwagon for just ONE day. It makes a mockery of the love you’re supposed to be displaying every other day of that same year.

I have another single friend…and she is distraught that she has ‘no-one’ for this special day, yet again. Her son and her mother spoil her rotten every year, and I have no doubt that she has woken to roses, chocolates and cards. But I know what she will tell me.

“It’s not the same.”

And I guess it isn’t.  But I suppose it’s all about perspective. At least there is someone that can love us – my heart aches for the unwanted and lonely people out there, with absolutely no one left in this world to show them love, any day of the year!

But all that said, I don’t begrudge you your Valentine’s day.

So Happy Valentine’s Day to the blogging world!

And if you have no significant other, please don’t let it get you down. It does not mean you’re unlovable, it just means that the right one to love you may still be wandering around the desert, because they’ve lost their directions (and let’s face it, they’re probably hiding from the mean chubby baby with the arrows!).

As hopeless as it may seem, one day you may just find yourself as the top trending topic on the Twitter feed of someone’s heart!

Let’s Do This!

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I saw the above picture in one of my moments of mindless Facebook browsing, and the Nike slogan popped into my head, “Just Do It”!

Suddenly my curious mind realised that I have no clue as to the origin of that slogan. Curiosity killed the cat – grateful I am human, or I would have needed more than nine lives – and I was surprised to find that the slogan is based on a death. Well, sort of, anyway.

Apparently the guy who came up with the slogan remembered something from a case back in 1977. A man was sentenced to death after robbing and killing two other men. As they led the condemned man to face the firing squad, he was apparently heard uttering, “Let’s do this”.

The words were altered, although the meaning is pretty much the same, to “Just do it”.

I feel unprepared for a situation I find myself in. In fact, lately, I am facing a lot of things that make me feel like I am the Queen of The Unready. (It’s great to fantasize about being a Queen of my own kingdom and all that, but the other feelings that go with the title are not so great.)

I find myself procrastinating, questioning and hesitating when the tasks before me actually need to be done. I find myself whining to my dog about how unfair life is, and all the reasons why I just don’t want to do the things I have to do – and detailing all the reasons I am so Unready.

And sometimes I think my dog understands.

This morning, with a mammoth task before me, I stood in the kitchen and sipped my coffee, complaining yet again out loud about why I didn’t ‘want to’. And in trots dog. And I mean ‘trots’, because he had a prize in his mouth, and he tends to display show-horse behaviour when he’s bragging about prizes. The prize? A page from a magazine he’d been tearing up. The page? On one side, an ad for Nike.

Yes, Dog…… Just Do It. And so I did! Ah yes, the little things that inspire the mind to accomplish the great tasks. The furniture has all been moved around, and I can cross that off the list. Only another ten things to go – and there are no more magazines lying around for inspiration. I guess I’ll have another cup of coffee 😉

Triple Troubles

According to folklorists, it is an ancient superstition that good or bad things happen in threes – but I’m also guessing that it’s a modern thing too, because I hear ‘that’ saying almost every day. “These things happen in three’s, you know.”

Apparently it’s the American way to see it in three’s (but we do here too), Native Americans see it in four’s, the Chinese see it in five’s. I’m going to go with three’s, thank you very much, especially if we’re talking bad things. Claudia de Lys is an American anthropologist, and has written a whole bunch of books on folklore and superstition. She reckons that, particularly when it comes to the bad side of the three’s, psychologically we choose to believe this concept because we need to have the reassurance that the bad things will end.

I am not superstitious. I believe differently.

But that said, I have now experienced a ‘three’ of my own. It’s been a bad three, and unfortunately ‘they’ are still here – sometimes when I close my eyes at night, sometimes in my dreams – never the same players, but always the same game. They may not seem as devastating to you as they were to me, but they have definitely messed with my psych and left me emotionally retarded at present.

  • As some of you will know from previous posts, I am a dog person. But it runs deeper than just loving my own handsome mutt. My whole life I have had a passion for dogs. I’m the kind of person who will go to a party, and spend the evening with the dog. I grow attached to canines rather quickly, and considering their rather short life span, this always ends in tragedy for me. On the other hand, I am wary of some dogs, and know when to NOT be affectionate, and just back off.
    It’s rather a long story, but I’ll make it short.
    My neighbour has two dogs. One is a mixed breed, who I love dearly. The other is a German Shepherd cross Husky, and has been temperamental of late – but I have always been wary of him. They’re both male, and the temperamental one has not been neutered. He’s the younger of the two – and twice the size of the mixed breed.
    Three weeks ago, my neighbours were out, and the big dog decided to claim his role as the Alpha in their yard. I phoned my neighbour to come home, and he said he was on his way. He told me not to go near the yard. I stood at my front door, unable to see the dogs due to the fence that runs around their property, but could hear. By the time my neighbour got home, I was a sobbing wreck, my own dog standing beside me shivering. I had listened to fifteen minutes of the smaller dog yelping, the larger dog growling and attacking – and I could do nothing. Thankfully, it ended well, in a sense. The smaller dog went off to the vet, got 50 stitches, and came home. They have now been separated and my neighbour is building a fence in his yard to keep them permanently so. But that yelping, those sounds…..they echo in my ears and make my heart sore.
  • Two days after the dog disturbance, my daughter was invited to a party, pretty much on the other side of town. On our drive there, we came to a busy intersection where there just was no gap in the traffic in order for us to continue, and so we had to wait. At this intersection was a group of drunk men. (11am. This is common for where I live, and so is what happened, but it was the first time we had to see it up close.) A fight broke out right next to us. We were stuck, with nowhere to go, as one man got the other to the ground and began beating him. A phone call to the local police was met with, “Sorry, we have no vehicles now. We’ll send someone when we can.” We were trapped, and although I begged my daughter not to look – well, you know what kids are like. I was watching traffic, as well as trying to keep an eye on the other men (to make sure no one approached our car and tried to harm us), and finally there was a gap and I drove away. That incident bothered my daughter so that she slept in my bed that night – and even now, she asks at least once a day, “Mommy, do you think that man beat the other man to death? Do you think he died?” I try and reassure her with a reply like, “I’m sure the cops got there in time,” but I know differently. Reading everyday experiences in our newspapers of late tells me what the outcome was.
  • Last week, my daughter got so terribly ill – and collapsed from dehydration, despite my best efforts of making her drink fluids. It all happened so fast, but before I knew it, she was pale and seemingly lifeless in a hospital bed, on a drip. As per a previous post, I thought that was the end. It was also almost the end of me. A pleasing result now – you’d never say it happened, she’s as chirpy as a hungry baby bird. But it was awful at the time.

It was only two days ago, when playing catch up in an email with my father and re-telling events as they happened, that I realised that there were three. And that saying came back to me. And it made me wonder. Because if these things happen in three’s, then that means the bad is over….for now.

You see, this begs the question…… do I wait for the next ‘three bad’ cycle to appear……or does it mean I am in line for ‘three good things’ now?

Perhaps it’s a good thing I am not superstitious.

My dog ate my homework

In my house, this old excuse rings true.

Except it’s not just the homework that suffers.

My dog eats EVERYTHING. Some days I’m offended, and wonder if we smell bad – because so far, the only ‘things’ he hasn’t tried to eat in our house are us humans – although playtime results in some pretty nasty scratches, both from teeth and paws.

We got him from a private rescue facility when he was seven weeks old. Some idiot threw him out the window of a car, in a plastic bag, when he was just three weeks. At five weeks of age, he contracted ‘tick bite fever/biliary’ – a disease that usually kills quickly. He beat that. He’s a survivor, this pavement special of ours.

And he’s probably one of the most remarkable dogs I have ever owned. I am a little biased, of course, but when I think of my dogs in the past, he’s something special.

I never had to house train him – he just knew.  Although once or twice, if I didn’t wake during the night, he’d disappear into the shower, and relieve himself there!

He also knew how to play fetch. That was great, until he started not only bringing me tennis balls, but socks, shoes, underwear, knitting needles, dish towels – pretty much anything he could find.

Placing these items in the middle of the counter didn’t help either. He has these ridiculously long legs that he uses as cat paws, to stretch and reach an item and pull it towards him. If he’s not caught in time, and it’s close enough for him to take in his teeth – then the game is on. Yes, he knows how to play ‘catches’ too – except we’re always the ones who are ‘on’.

When his water bowl is almost empty, he tips it up and watches the last of it form a puddle. Then he picks it up, and trots around with it until he finds one of us humans to give it to.

He trots. Like a horse. And when he’s excited about who is at the door, and is patiently waiting for you to open the gate and let them in, he trots on the spot, like a show horse.

But back to the water. I don’t know about you, but when I was a child I was often in trouble when we went to eat out at restaurants. I would put my straw into my glass, and blow into it, making bubbles. Sometimes, I was so loud, people would turn to look.

We’d had our pup for a month. One night, I was sitting at the computer in the lounge, and he was chewing on his bone behind me. My daughter was sprawled across my bed, reading a book (you’d think she doesn’t have her own room sometimes).And I heard someone blowing bubbles through a straw. I yelled for her to stop. She came to tell me she wasn’t doing anything – and the noise miraculously went away. Until a few minutes later. This time, I turned around.My dog was standing with his head in his water bowl, snout pushing down against the bottom of the bowl, and blowing through his nose! Then he would lift his head, and try and catch the bubbles in the bowl – I kid you not, I couldn’t make something like that up if I tried! He used to do this a lot, but he’s just over a year now, and doesn’t do it as often.

I used to have a lovely back garden. In fact, I’d planted a whole bunch of new flowers about a month before we got him. I worked really hard in that garden. Used to. It’s his now. And of course, there’s not a flower in sight – although what he did with them no one knows.

I used to have a couch. I never really liked it, but at least once upon a time, it was whole. I’m thankful we can at least still sit on it.

couch

In the morning, if my daughter has not yet woken, I tell him to go and wake her. He dutifully trots off to her room, and presses his snout against her nose, lavishing her with soppy kisses. (Of course, this is sometimes a problem when she is woken from a deep slumber by him.)

At night, he seems to know when it’s bedtime. Naturally, he sleeps with me. He eases himself onto the bed, usually in my spot, and curls up as best he can with his long legs, on my pillow. Of course, I gently shift him across to the other side of the bed, amidst moans of protest from somewhere deep in his chest. Some nights he shows his disgust at being moved by moving again – to plonk himself on top of my feet. And that is where he sleeps.
But there are those nights where he is accepting of his position, and he continues to sleep. And just to show he’s still not entirely amused with me, he snores in my ear for the rest of the night.

toffee

If you ask him if he wants a hug, he comes to you and stands on his hind legs. I lean in, and he places his paws on my shoulders. I step closer, and wrap my arms around his body. He curls his paws, so that you can feel them on your neck. He then ‘stretches’, but the curled paws make it feel like he is hugging you. It’s the sweetest thing ever!

His latest antic was earlier today, and I am happy to report that no actual harm came to him – although I was very worried initially. I super-glued a frame, and then placed the super glue, and frame, on top of the microwave, which sits ON TOP of the counter. Don’t ask me how – I don’t think I’ll ever work it out – but in the two minutes it took me to get the washing out the machine, he got the glue. I came through to find him lying on the couch, not looking too happy, ‘chewing his cud’, with the super glue tube in front of him. Sigh. Another baby in the house?

I have to add, because those who hear tales of his antics all suggest it, my dog is not bored or neglected. He has a constant supply of human love, chew toys and bones all over the house. He is regularly supplied with more. He just prefers OUR stuff. AND, he generally only misbehaves when we’re HERE! if we go out, he sleeps, like an angel. The mischief is for our benefit!

And surprisingly, I am okay with that. He’s not just ‘a’ dog. He’s OURS. And we couldn’t have asked for a better addition to our little family!

Hello World!

In the world of blogging, your first blog post could make or break you. (Or so I have read.)  The pressure is on! Of course, amidst this pressure, there were other important events taking place.

The dog has been stung by a bee, again. According to ‘legend’, a bee in your house indicates that you’ll be getting a visitor – oh hell, I hope there isn’t company coming. My dining room table is bending under all the clean, folded and ironed washing from yesterday – To-do list activated : put away the clean clothes ‘sometime’ this morning.

The glass jar of coffee in the cupboard has been attacked by the Coffee Critters and is now empty. When I have finished this cup, a trip to the store is in order – To-do list paused, shopping list in my head begins.

A quick glance down confirms that I have yet to get dressed – switch lists – priority on to-do list. I doubt the other shoppers will appreciate my fluffy purple pyjama’s as much as I do.

My preteen is hungry. Again. Breakfast was an hour ago. How much food can one little body consume? And how come the body is still so small after all that food?

Without further ado, I bid farewell to you – I need to beat the other human (teenager) to the bathroom if I’m going to shower and get out to refill my coffee jar!

Hello World, indeed!