Wednesday, 31 December 2008

Many Thanks, Apologies, Belated Merry Christmas and a Very Happy New Year!!!

Firstly MANY THANKS for all the very kind comments that I have been given over the past weeks . I cannot thank you enough for your kind and helpful words that have touched my heart!!!!

Secondly MANY APOLOGIES to you all for not getting back to you and responding to these most caring and wonderful comments. Also apologies for not blogging of late.. life has been very difficult recently and any spare time I have managed to find I have been frantically trying to get everything ready for Christmas or just plain exhausted!!

I did manage to get ready for Christmas but had to burn the candle at both ends of the day to do so and even ended up staying up all night Christmas eve..... I was so behind with wrapping presents for the family and even putting up Christmas cards and I so wanted to make Christmas... Christmas that it was the only thing I could do.. paid the price though because I was dead on my feet by Christmas night!! But it was nice to see the finished result by Christmas morning and of course watch the family's faces as they opened up their presents it made the lack of sleep worthwhile ......

A few Christmas pictures of the tree etc....

Due to hard times financially we all had to make cut backs this Christmas and my daughter and her partner were feeling the pinch quite harshly this year. My daughters partner has quite a few gorgeous ornaments in his home and I fell in love with one ornament in particular and so in view of this and lack of money my daughter and her partner decided to give me for a Christmas gift the ornament I so adored... and this it is.... a gift that means so much to me and will be treasured forever!!!

I adore owls and I so love this special gift..... Everyone gave very thoughtfully this year and I was given essential oils, organic skincare products, useful clothing for indoor and outdoor wear, some really super wellingtons that are just up my street as I love the Guns and Roses band/music
We also gave useful presents this year... clothes and items that were generally needed with the odd surprise thrown in. I also brought a lot of my gifts of Etsy this year... so many beautiful handmade items that have been greatly appreciated and have most certainly given a great deal of pleasure. I will blog about this and list the many wonderfully gorgeous creative people that I have discovered since blogging. Blogging I have to say has opened a whole new world for me and its a real privilege getting to know so many lovely people. I am overwhelmed by the warmth and support shown to me of late and I have a feeling I am going to be needing a great deal more support during the coming year, which I am sad to say I am actually not really looking forward too... to be honest I am scared of what this year will reveal as it progresses. I have began to have a feeling of dread each morning when I wake now and I almost have to force myself out of bed to face the day.

As many of you may know my darling Mum is sadly becoming more confused and muddled as the days go by. This is what has taken up a lot of my time of late and will continue to do so as time goes by. I do not begrudge my Mum a minute of my time.... but I do find it very hard to bear. My gorgeous rock is slowly diminishing and its Mum who looks to me to get her through the days. Some days she is so vulnerable like a little child and it so sad because I am slowly losing my strong, confident Mum... My Mum who has up until recently been my continued rock, she has shared so much with me. I am an only child and my relationship with my Mum has been so fantastic.. I am very lucky I know but it makes it so much harder as I slowly see her slip away into the fog. Mum has undergone many tests and physically all appears to be well, but mentally something is so very wrong. Mum suffered a stroke as I mentioned in an earlier post shortly after my Dad passed away and things have slowly since then deteriorated. It mainly began to affect Mums way of expressing herself verbally, she could not always get out what she wanted to say and at the moment its very hard indeed for her to get out anything she wants to say which is certainly not helping matters. A conversation with Mum now is almost a guessing game. I have to be her voice wherever we go. Next week I will be seeking further medical help because I need to know what is creating this confusion and muddle. I fear a dementia of some degree, but I need to know what it is what so we can plan and prepare. We are also in the process of filling in an housing application form. We live in a Park Home and have done so for the last 29 happy years. We love where we live, its a great community and we live in the middle of some lovely countryside which I also adore. We are a small Park Home estate and have some wonderful neighbours and friends here. My Mum and Dad sold their house so they could purchase a park home here for their retirement and so have many more of the residents. We sadly do not have the funds to purchase a house and so a council property would be our only option. I am afraid living in our park home has spoilt us and also the surrounding countryside so to move would be harrowing for us all but its becoming that I need to be with Mum 24 hours a day and in our present situation this is not possible. As it stands so far 2009 for us is looking very bleak.

Our gorgeous bundles of fur have helped take our minds of some of our recent problems and here's one or two pictures......

The weather has been very seaonal of late and in my opinion very beautiful and I have of course had to have my trusty camera out to record as much of it as I can... I find walking Basil and the two cats, very theraputic and even more so if I have an opportunity to use the camera... it helps to clear the mind and think things through... I need to have that solitude to survive at the moment.

Here one or two pictures.....

And so to finish... please forgive me my moans and groans... regardless of my own personal thoughts of 2009, I do wish each and everyone of you a VERY HAPPY 2009 and that all your hopes and dreams come true....

Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to get it right.

Oprah Winfrey

Friday, 12 December 2008

Miss you so much Dad...

Have been feeling a bit low over the last few days... Mum is not well she seems to be getting more and more muddled and confused with life... and today is the anniversary of my Dads death. On this day, December 12th 1991, we lost a very much loved husband and Dad... so long ago yet it seems like only yesterday when Dad was taken from us so suddenly. Dad suffered from asthma and on this particular night he suffered quite a severe asthma attack. Dad had been ill with a chest infection and he had been given steroids earlier that day... sadly during the night regardless of the steroids things took a turn for the worst. Mum called me in a panic and I called for help. It was decided that Dad only needed to see a doctor on call out and by the time the doctor arrived Dad was struggling for breath. Mum was getting very upset as was I but we tried to put a brave face on things... The Doctor called an ambulance immediately and in hindsight and something I have always felt really guilty about is the fact that I should have insisted on an ambulance in the first place! If I had the outcome could have been so different! By the time the ambulance arrived and it seemed like forever... The Doctor kept looking out of the window waiting for the ambulance and checking my Dad... but he could do nothing to help his breathing... Mum and I busied our selves by gathering items required for an hospital stay...
When the ambulance finally arrived they carried my Dad out in a sort of stretcher chair... Dad could not talk he was just concentrating on trying to get what little air he could to his lungs... but I could see the worry in his eyes, Dad hated hospitals... the last thing I said to Dad was ' you will soon be feeling better Dad, and you will be home in time for Christmas' he gave me a knowing glance... The ambulance men got Dad into the ambulance and connected him to a nebuliser.... Dad looked so relieved... and then he died......
I miss him so much (Mum misses him deeply and I don't think she has ever gotten over his loss) .... this was the poem that we read out at his funeral, such beautiful words....

They say memories are golden
well maybe that is true.
I never wanted memories,
I only wanted you.

A million times I needed you,
a million times I cried.
If love alone could have saved you
you never would have died.

In life I loved you dearly,
In death I love you still.
In my heart you hold a place
no one could ever fill.

If tears could build a stairway
and heartache make a lane,
I'd walk the path to heaven
and bring you back again.

Our family chain is broken,
and nothing seems the same.
But as God calls us one by one,
the chain will link again.

Author Unknown.....
Love you with all my heart Dad... and think of you each and every day, but especially today!! xxxxxx

Monday, 8 December 2008

Basil is a lot better now......

As mentioned in earlier posts, Basil was quite poorly over the last week or so with stomach problems. I have now managed to get him back on his much needed painkiller without it upsetting his stomach... thankfully!!

Our vet was becoming quite concerned that due to the long term digestive problems Basil has now developed he may well be rejecting his painkiller. After a recent upset stomach we had to take Basil off his painkiller for a week to allow Basil's stomach to settle down again. Poor Basil was in so much pain at the end of that week, and could hardly stand after lying down for any length of time. Its so hard to witness a much loved pet in pain. I was really worried when resuming the painkillers that he would become ill again. I am not really sure what the outcome would have been if he had totally rejected those painkillers.

Anyway Basil is back on the painkillers and a much happier dog. I started his new multi vitamins on Saturday and so far so good. Basil now has to have multivitamins due to his now permanent diet of chicken and rice. The chicken and rice is a meal that suits his digestive system and Basil also enjoys it a great deal (again thankfully!!) but it does lack vital nutrients and thus the need for multivitamins. Basil will have regular blood tests to check to see if the multivitamins are meeting his nutrient requirements and I guess our fantastic vet will tweak the vitamins accordingly.

So we now hope Basil will be able to remain free of stomach upsets, thus staying happily on his painkillers until he finally has his hip replacements....
We love you with all of our hearts dearest Basil......

Bold and his favourite monkey!!

Bold has a favourite friend he likes to cuddle up too when he has one of his many 'cat naps' and I managed to capture one of his cuddling monkey moments on camera...

The monkey belongs to my son... brought for him by his sister as a bit of a joke a few years ago now... my son must like it as its always kept at the bottom of his bed, but no doubt he will never own up to this statement......

It reminds me of a recent post by the lovely CW at and gorgeous Tom kitten with his favourite doll!
I wonder if other cats have a favourite toy to cuddle up too?

Sunday, 7 December 2008

Green Meme 2

1) Link to Green Meme Bloggers.
2) Link back to whoever tagged you.
3) Include meme number
4) Include these guidelines in your post
5) Tag 3 other green bloggers.
1. Do you use baking soda toothpaste or baking soda shampoo? If not, would you consider it?

Yes we use baking soda toothpaste. We have not used baking soda shampoo because I had no idea that their was a baking soda shampoo... will be investigating. Yes I would most certainly consider it and will try it out as soon as possible.

2. Do you make any home cleaning products?

I use a lot of vinegar and lemon juice and I also use essential oils where possible. I will put some essential oils in my final washing machine rinse. I also include essential oil (few drops) in a spray bottle of water and squirt it over my clothing when I need to damp it down during ironing. Also use essential oils as an air freshener. I use oils to suit my mood. Lavender and lemon are favourites for around the house.
I am considering making my own washing powder.

3. What is your top green issue at the moment?
Electricity/gas consumption. Use as little as possible for both green and economic reasons. Continue to strive to save much more!!

4. Given unlimited cash, what is on your fantasy green wishlist?

To be able to purchase an eco home. My biggest and most wonderful dream of all would be to build our home in a completely eco style in woodland. To be completely self sufficient. I would also like to own land that could contain one of those gorgeous wind turbines... I think they are so lovely and to be able to use all that energy from mother nature really would make me so happy!!

(Isn't that a beautiful sight!)

5. Have you implemented any new green act/behaviour/product this month?

Yes.. all my statements/bills are mostly sorted out online now. I have cancelled as many paper statements and bills as I possibly can . This will help the environment and also make me less guilty about using a computer. I have also decided that I not going to have outdoor Christmas lights this year, thus saving on energy and hopefully a more economical electricity bill.

Now for nominating three other blogs.... I am going to try to find blogs that have already been tagged with green meme 1. Please don't feel you have to do the Green Meme 2, its only if you want to.....


Thank you so much !!! for this award, I am so happy to receive it!!

I need to pass it on to five other blogs. I will try to award blogs that have not yet received this lovely award, so here goes......I am going to nominate

Thank you for your lovely blogs .. a joy to follow!!

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

I have been tagged with a Green Meme 1

Green Meme 1

I’ve been tagged - by

Thank you so much CW!!!!

The Guidelines:

1. Link to
Green Meme Bloggers
2.Link to whoever tagged you
3.Include meme number
4.Include these guidelines in your post
5.Answer questions ( which are quite thought provoking!)
6.Tag 3 other green bloggers.

1. Name two motivations for being green

My first motivation for been green was brought
about by my love of nature and hearing about so many animals/plants etc
becoming endangered due to pollution and the way 'man' is treating the planet. No
better reason for been motivated personally to contribute to the saving of
the 'planet'

My second motivation was the birth of my
children I wanted them to have a safe and happy environment to live in and by
bringing them up with my green beliefs will hopefully go towards making our
precious planet a better place to live .

2. Name 2 eco-unfriendly items you refuse to give up

My computer.... such a useful part of my life.
I try to compensate its use by not putting on the television/radio

My tumble drier.. I live in a small home and to
have wet washing draped around in the winter would be most unpleasant, and
impractical. I do my best to put it outside and line dry it when I can and thus
reducing the length of time I have to use of the drier.

3. Are you at peace with, or do you feel guilty about no.2?

I do not feel guilty so guilty about using the
computer because I shop online instead of having to drive into town to shop, this
saves on fuel which would have to be used to go into town. I also cut down
on the use of other electrical items to make up for my computer usage.

The use of the drier does make me feel guilty
but I am as economical as I can be with the length of time I use it.

4. What are you willing to change but feel unable to/stuck with/unsure how to go about it?

I would like to be able to use solar panels and
wind combine energy but due to where I live I am unable to do go ahead with
these ideas, so I am stuck with leaving things as they are.

5. Do you know your carbon footprint for your home? If so, is it larger/smaller than your national average?

Sorry no I don't. Something I have been meaning
to do for a while now. I would hope it would be on the low side as we try to be
as careful as we can with our energy usage.

6.What’s eco-frustrating and/or eco-fantastic about where you live?

Eco-frustrating is the use of pesticides in
surrounding fields. I cannot believe the amount of times the farmers spray the
fields during the crop growing season. I love living in the countryside but
really detest the chemicals that are used on crops. The chemicals in the air are
choking after a field spray and we are very careful to keep away from a recently
sprayed field. I love living in the country but do worry about the effects these
chemicals are having humans , wildlife and the environment.

Eco-fantastic is the latest recycling scheme
our local council have provided. We have green wheelie bins for garden waste,
although most of my garden waste (apart from weeds) goes into my own composters.
We have a fortnightly wheelie bin collection for recyclable materials such as
glass, cardboard, plastic which is absolutely fantastic, and a weekly wheelie
bin collection for normal household rubbish.

7. Do you eat local/organic/vegetarian/forage/grow you own?

We eat organic food. Some of the food is local,
some is not. We are not vegetarians, we have tried a vegetarian diet
and also vegan, but its not for us, but we make sure that the meat we eat is
organic. I do forage for foods and will collect blackberries or nuts when
in season. Would like to find out more about foraging as rosehips and
elderberries have been in abundance this year. We do grow our own but are
limited for space so try to utilise most of the garden.

8. What do you personally find the most challenging in being green?

It can be time consuming and also hard work.
Also some times hard on the budget, especially organic foods and clothing.

9. Do you have a green confession?

Yes and no... I am not going to feel guilty
over it as I do my level best to be as green and organic as possible, but at
times I may have to wear non organic clothing or use on
occasions non organic foods. I do have a budget and sometimes my budget will not
always stretch to totally organic and as much as I hate it I have to concede.
The budget is top of my list during these difficult financial times!

10. Do you have the support of family and/or friends?

Yes totally! My husband is with me all the way
and my children have been brought up with my green/organic methods and they too
are happy to continue with that lifestyle. My friends are happy to go along with
my lifestyle and support me in many ways.

Thank you CW for the gift of this Green Meme, I
have really enjoyed doing it !!

And now I would like to pass it onto three other lovely bloggers (will try not to tag anyone who has already been tagged with the Green Meme before)