My Sunday Photo

The girls had a petting zoo come to their guides group last week. I was on the rota as parent helper, so had to take the two smaller ones  with me- what a shame.

They had a ball and DD3 loved the little bantams. She spent quite a lot of time hypnotising them and placing them in various places.

hypnotising chickens
Then she had the idea of putting them on the donkey’s back and giving them a ride.

chickens on a donkey

Luckily neither the chooks nor the donkey minded.

Sunday photo

My Sunday Photo

My youngest daughter has always wanted a pet bird but neither DH or I like the thought of a bird stuck in a cage for 10+ years. Plus, we have cats.

On Monday there was a post on a local parents’ page saying someone had found a budgie, had anyone lost one? And if not, could anyone take it and look after it as person who found it was asthmatic. I waited a bit to see if anyone more suitable replied, but after a couple of hours dropped the finder a PM. He replied quite quickly and  told me that the bird was being kept in a plastic box. It was quite safe and well, but obviously needed more suitable accommodation.

All we could offer was a smallish hamster cage with perches made from apple tree twigs but it would do until the bird’s owner was found. The kids were ecstatic and have named him/her Charlie. The cats were also over the moon and had to be persuaded ( with a water bottle) that Charlie was not some sort of environmental enrichment activity for them.

Blue Budgie
Charlie has been with us almost a week and I’ve registered him/her on a load of lost bird/pet sites. I’ve had one reply from a lady who lost a blue budgie a week previously. She lost her bird about 6 miles away so it’s certainly not too far away, but hers was a mature male, while Charlie is probably 5-9 months old and most likely a female. So from now on I’m going to refer to him/her as ‘her’.

I think Charlie most likely comes from an aviary or pet shop. She is not scared of humans or cats or dogs but isn’t hand tame. I’ve had to hold Charlie a couple of times to move her and I haven’t been bitten. And budgies can bite quite badly if they put their mind to it!

So for now, we have a bird. DD3 is very pleased, I like having the little chirper in the house and even DH has just ordered a new cage for her so it seems that Charlie has  her little feet firmly under the table.

Sunday photo


My Sunday Photo

We have two rescue dogs and we do agility with both of them.  Actually, when I say ‘We’, I really mean DD1 and DD3.

DD1 has taken on the training of our newest dog and I used to train our older dog myself but I’m too slow for him. So DD3, who is 10, has taken him over and she is doing a brilliant job.

She’s been running him for about a year now and they are probably almost ready to start competing. It’s been a steep learning curve for her and she found it hard  at first taking directions from the lady who takes the classes.


She’s had to learn how to use her body language to give her dog the signals he needs to know what’s coming next.

She’s had to learn to think about the dog’s point of view.

And the rules involved in tackling different bits of equipment.

L&B 6
Most importantly, she’s had to learn to cope with making mistakes and disappointment in a way that keeps her dog’s tail wagging.

I think agility is a brilliant sport if you have a dog of any shape or size.

It’s loads of fun for dogs and owners, even if you end up relegated to the sidelines and function as a mobile hitching post. watching your daughters do all the work!

Sunday photo

My Sunday Photo

Mouse in the house
This was the scene in our kitchen on Wednesday night.

Our cats are always bringing in small furry things and dropping them as soon as they get in the house. The said furry thing then makes a beeline ( or should that be mouseline?) for the nearest large appliance and this results in very frustrated felines.

On Thursday night, it was obvious the Furry Thing had relocated to the living room. We had cats in cupboards, up the chimney, behind the TV- they were definitely on the prowl.

When we went to bed, we shut them in the lounge and let them get on with it…

This was the sight that met our eyes on Friday morning. The scene of the crime has not been altered in any way.

Mouse on the piano

Do you think our cats are trying to tell us something?

Sunday photo

My Sunday Photo

Last week I shared a photo of one of our cats who gets possessive of anyone who sits on the sofa.

This week, I’d like to introduce you to his brother who allows the kids to hold him in all sorts of weird positions. Here he is being used as a phone rest by my eldest. He doesn’t  seem to mind at all

Phone rest cat

He also tries to follow the little two to school each morning, which scares me as we have to cross roads to get there. I would hate for either of the cats to get run over but I don’t feel we’d be being fair to keep them as indoor cats.

The local wildlife would probably rejoice if we did. For the first couple of years, these cats only brought in frogs but have since graduated to mice and birds. Along with the odd camellia.

Look. My cats bring me flowers!

Things cats bring in

My Sunday Photo

My Sunday Photo

It’s a year ago today that we lost our lovely Lurcher, Willow. If you want to hear the full story, you can read about it here.

If you don’t have time, all you really need to know is it involved a fox, a van and specialist vet care that cost over £8K. After which she died anyhow.

We had some insurance, but not enough. At least we know we did everything we could for her.

A year on, I have dreaded the run up to this day but now it’s here, it’s not so bad.  We’ve looked at photos and told stories about her and earlier this week I spent some time making a little Lurcher feltie that is supposed to look like her.

The dog-shaped hole she left has been filled by a rescue dog who has fitted in to our family well, but of course there is never any filling the Willow-shaped hole.

We still miss her pointy nose, hairy butt and mad zoomies last thing at night.

I just can’t believe a whole year has passed since we last saw her.

Willow Feltie

My Sunday Photo

My Sunday Photo

Our garden is quite neglected in winter. Only the dogs use it, and this morning one of them decided a little renovation was in order.

One of the planters we had tomatoes in last year was the object of his efforts.

I think you will agree with me when I say his efforts were not consistent with basic garden winter maintenance.

Or maybe he’s trying to tell us something?

Farley Mess
My Sunday Photo

My Sunday Photo

My kids have always wanted a trampoline. I always thought it might be a good thing to have in the garden for about a week, but after that I suspected it would become infested by spiders and no one would ever use it again. My children have what I consider an over the top fear of anything with eight legs.

DH doesn’t want a trampoline in our garden either but his objection is more practical; he just worries that one of our offspring might break something.

It’s hard getting the everyone out to exercise when the weather is like this . Just look outside  to see what I mean if you live in the UK. The days of being able to force everyone into wet weather gear and wellies and taking them out puddle jumping are over for us,  so when I hear about something they can do indoors that doesn’t involve a controller and a screen, I’m all ears.

I bought them a rebounder.  It’s a little trampoline, built for purely for exercising. They love it, and often queue to have a bounce but they don’t like having to share it with others. That’s alright, because the feeling is most definitely mutual.

The cat isn’t so keen on sharing his new bed with the kids either.

Cat on the rebound
BTW,  my smugness at discovering a screen-and-console free activity turned out to be unjustified. It seems it is entirely possible to play Plants vs Zombies while bouncing on a rebounder.

My Sunday Photo