Saturday, 30 April 2011

The last photo...















I took this photo of Amber just a few days before she passed away *sigh* 

I miss my precious poochie, sweetie~pies.  It still feels weird when I look at this corner of the living room and she isn't there.  I still half expect her to follow me when I go upstairs.  I still say "night night pookie" when I go to bed each night, just like I always used to.  And when I have to go to the loo during the night, I still find myself cautiously feeling with my foot to see where she has spread her long limbs so that I don't tread on her.  She was my constant companion for 10 1/2 years and yet she was gone in an instant. 

I know that it was a "good" death for her ~ if there can be such a thing ~ as she didn't linger and suffer, but it was so terribly hard for us.  I think, deep inside, that I knew I was going to lose her as soon as she had the seizure.  So in a way it wasn't unexpected when our vet telephoned with the results of the blood tests and told us that the news wasn't good.  Still so hard to hear, though.  When she brought up blood I knew it was time to call the vet for the last time.  Amber had that first seizure at 5am and by 11am she was gone.  But she was at home with us, in her familiar surroundings with all the noises and smells that she had always known.  We were able to touch her and talk to her whilst the vet gave her that final injection and that is how she drifted away.  So yes, a good death if you like.  

And life carries on, doesn't it my loves, no matter what has happened.  Life doesn't stand still, it is always moving on.  Time passes, days go by, we have to carry on.  Memories stay in our hearts, though, always there for us to bring to mind whenever we want...         

Thursday, 28 April 2011

The Thursday Poem





















God's Garden



THE Lord God planted a garden
In the first white days of the world,
And He set there an angel warden
In a garment of light enfurled.


So near to the peace of Heaven,
That the hawk might nest with the wren,
For there in the cool of the even
God walked with the first of men.


And I dream that these garden closes
With their shade and their sun-flecked sod
And their lilies and bowers of roses,
Were laid by the hand of God.


The kiss of the sun for pardon,
The song of the birds for mirth, –
One is nearer God's heart in a garden
Than anywhere else on earth.


For He broke it for us in a garden
Under the olive-trees
Where the angel of strength was the warden
And the soul of the world found ease.


Dorothy Frances Gurney
(4th October 1858 - 15th June 1932)

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

This Universe ~ Singh Kaur

What Tarot card are you...

You are The Empress

Beauty, happiness, pleasure, success, luxury, dissipation.
The Empress is associated with Venus, the feminine planet, so it represents,
beauty, charm, pleasure, luxury, and delight. You may be good at home
decorating, art or anything to do with making things beautiful.
The Empress is a creator, be it creation of life, of romance, of art or business. While the Magician is the primal spark, the idea made real, and the High Priestess is the one who gives the idea a form, the Empress is the womb where it gestates and grows till it is ready to be born. This is why her symbol is Venus, goddess of beautiful things as well as love. Even so, the Empress is more Demeter, goddess of abundance, then sensual Venus. She is the giver of Earthly gifts, yet at the same time, she can, in anger withhold, as Demeter did when her daughter, Persephone, was kidnapped. In fury and grief, she kept the Earth barren till her child was returned to her.
What Tarot Card are You?
Take the Test to Find Out.

Monday, 25 April 2011

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Prayer for World Peace


Dove of Peace ~ Giclee print





















We pray to the great Spiritual Power in which we live and move and have our being.

We pray that we may at all times keep our minds open to new ideas and shun dogma;
that we may grow in our understanding of the nature of all living beings and our connectedness with the natural world;
that we may become ever more filled with generosity of spirit and true compassion and love for all life;
that we may strive to heal the hurts that we have inflicted on nature and control our greed for material things, knowing that our actions are harming our natural world and the future of our children;
that we may value each and every human being for who he is, for who she is, reaching to the spirit that is within, knowing the power of each individual to change the world.


We pray for social justice, for the alleviation of the crippling poverty that condemns millions of people around the world to lives of misery - hungry, sick, and utterly without hope.
We pray for the children who are starving, who are condemned to homelessness, slave labour, prostitution, and especially for those forced to fight, to kill and torture even members of their own family.
We pray for the victims of violence and war, for those wounded in body and for those wounded in mind.
We pray for the multitudes of refugees, forced from their homes to alien places through war or through the utter destruction of their environment.


We pray for suffering animals everywhere, for an end to the pain caused by scientific experimentation, intensive farming, fur farming, shooting, trapping, training for entertainment, abusive pet owners, and all other forms of exploitation such as overloading and overworking pack animals, bull fighting, badger baiting, dog and cock fighting and so many more.


We pray for an end to cruelty, whether to humans or other animals, for an end to bullying, and torture in all its forms.
We pray that we may learn the peace that comes with forgiving and the strength we gain in loving;
that we may learn to take nothing for granted in this life;
that we may learn to see and understand with our hearts;
that we may learn to rejoice in our being.


We pray for these things with humility;
We pray because of the hope that is within us, and because of a faith in the ultimate triumph of the human spirit;
We pray because of our love for Creation, and because of our trust in God.
We pray, above all, for peace throughout the world.


prayer for world peace ~ dr jane goodall

Friday, 22 April 2011

ANH challenge to EU threat to traditional herbs




Please, my loves, support this and stop the EU from taking away our freedom of choice

http://www.savenaturalhealth.eu/sign.php

Thursday, 21 April 2011

The Thursday Poem























How Do I love thee?  Let me count the ways

How do I love thee?  Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of being and ideal grace.
I love thee to the level of every day's
Most quiet need, by sun and candlelight.
I love thee freely, as men strive for right;
I love thee purely, as they turn from praise.
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints - I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life! - and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.

Elizabeth Barrett Browning
(6th March 1806 - 29th June 1861)

from the book: Poem for the Day One

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Just to let you know...


















...we had to have Amber put to sleep this morning. 

I feel lost, the house feels empty and it's like a piece has been ripped out of my heart...

Monday, 18 April 2011

Sunday, 17 April 2011

Prayer for World Peace


Dove of Peace ~ Giclee print





















We pray to the great Spiritual Power in which we live and move and have our being.

We pray that we may at all times keep our minds open to new ideas and shun dogma;
that we may grow in our understanding of the nature of all living beings and our connectedness with the natural world;
that we may become ever more filled with generosity of spirit and true compassion and love for all life;
that we may strive to heal the hurts that we have inflicted on nature and control our greed for material things, knowing that our actions are harming our natural world and the future of our children;
that we may value each and every human being for who he is, for who she is, reaching to the spirit that is within, knowing the power of each individual to change the world.


We pray for social justice, for the alleviation of the crippling poverty that condemns millions of people around the world to lives of misery - hungry, sick, and utterly without hope.
We pray for the children who are starving, who are condemned to homelessness, slave labour, prostitution, and especially for those forced to fight, to kill and torture even members of their own family.
We pray for the victims of violence and war, for those wounded in body and for those wounded in mind.
We pray for the multitudes of refugees, forced from their homes to alien places through war or through the utter destruction of their environment.


We pray for suffering animals everywhere, for an end to the pain caused by scientific experimentation, intensive farming, fur farming, shooting, trapping, training for entertainment, abusive pet owners, and all other forms of exploitation such as overloading and overworking pack animals, bull fighting, badger baiting, dog and cock fighting and so many more.


We pray for an end to cruelty, whether to humans or other animals, for an end to bullying, and torture in all its forms.
We pray that we may learn the peace that comes with forgiving and the strength we gain in loving;
that we may learn to take nothing for granted in this life;
that we may learn to see and understand with our hearts;
that we may learn to rejoice in our being.


We pray for these things with humility;
We pray because of the hope that is within us, and because of a faith in the ultimate triumph of the human spirit;
We pray because of our love for Creation, and because of our trust in God.
We pray, above all, for peace throughout the world.


prayer for world peace ~ dr jane goodall

Friday, 15 April 2011

A somewhat unpleasant week...


Photograph by: Michelle Meiklejohn




















Well, my loves, this has certainly been an eye-opening if rather unpleasant week for your's truly. 

You already know that I had a prolapsed disc about three years ago which I have been 'recovering' from ever since.  I have also been taking painkilling medication in the form of Tramadol ever since my disc went.  Initially I was taking other medication too but was eventually able to whittle it down to just the Tramadol.  My prescription states that I can take two-100mg tablets twice daily, if required, but over the past year I have whittled that down and in recent months have been able to get by on just one tablet daily.  Whilst I will admit that I am not pain-free the majority of the time, the pain has gradually decreased to a level which I would describe as 'discomfort' in varying degrees depending on what I have been doing.  That's not to say that I never have a pain-free moment; recently I have noticed that from time-to-time my pain has indeed been noticeable by its absence!

So, sweetie~pies, two or three weeks back I decided to try having the odd day with no Tramadol, just to see how things were progressing pain-wise.  Well, the pain was no worse than the days when I was taking the medication so at the beginning of this week, I decided that perhaps it was time to come off the Tramadol altogether.  I'm now in day five of no Tramadol and to be frank it has not been a very nice week at all *sigh*

I have felt quite unwell with a variety of symptoms :-(  I've felt cold, achey, tired but having great difficulty in getting to sleep at night, restless (especially my legs!), depressed, upset tummy, streaming nose/sneezing, palpitations.....

I must confess that I was getting to the point where I wondered if I should make an appointment to see my GP, when the thought gradually seeped into my poor befuddled brain that perhaps it was because I was no longer taking the Tramadol.  So, I did a search for withdrawal sypmtoms associated with Tramadol (not that I was honestly expecting to find that that was the problem) and was shocked to discover that I was not alone!  It seems that Tramadol is actually addictive and all the symptoms I have been experiencing are all-too common when one stops taking the drug.

To say that I was shocked was an understatement.  I was horrified to think that I had actually become 'addicted' to a drug; I felt like crying.  Strangely, I also felt embarrassed and rather ashamed.  Thankfully, I gave myself a metaphorical slap in that regard as I had no idea that this would be the outcome when I was first prescribed Tramadol.  To be honest, I would gladly have taken anything as I was in so much pain!  I do wish, though, that I had been made aware of the potential risks involved at some point.  In fairness, I should say that my GP did say to me a long time back that the aim would be to eventually get me off the drugs, but he has been quite happy to keep signing the repeat prescriptions at the same original dosage for all this time.

I guess the moral of the tale is that we should all take more responsibility for our health, and make a point of finding out as much as we can about our medical problems and any drugs that are prescribed for us.  As I've already said, at the time I would have taken anything to ease the pain but as my back started to improve, I should have found out as much as I could about both my medical condition and the drugs I was being prescribed.  

I am still going through a certain amount of withdrawal but I have weathered the storm thus far and have managed to resist the lure to start taking the Tramadol again.  Hopefully it won't be too much longer before the drug and its effects have cleared from my system :-)               

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Where the hell is Matt



I saw this YouTube video on another blog and just had to share here!

http://www.wherethehellismatt.com/

A Doll-Shaped Heart

New post today :-)

A sister for Jane!


This, my loves, is Ginger ~ Jane's new sister :-)  Isn't she sweet!  Poor Ginger was terribly dirty when she arrived and looked a little sad.  She soon perked up though when she realised that I was going to give her a lovely bath in the kitchen sink.


I think that this photo shows more clearly just how grubby Ginger was ~ I don't believe that the poor little mite had ever had a wash in her whole life!  I got out all of my dolly spa bits 'n' pieces and set to with gusto on the "clean up Ginger" project ;-)













Don't be alarmed, sweetie~pies! I took off Ginger's leg so that I could drain out all the water which had seeped inside during the cleaning process. Had I found that I couldn't remove a limb very easily, then I wouldn't have submerged her in the water :-)  I have to say that it is waaaay easier to clean a dolly than a real baby LOL

You can see the difference between her still-dirty face and the rest of her in this photo!



















Ta daa ~  here she is, a lovely clean, sweet-smelling baby dolly, complete with both legs in their rightful places ;-)

I had to use my non-stick saucepan scouring-pad to get the dirt and grime removed from Ginger, along with copious squirts of Ecover multi-purpose cleaner! Her eyes were very dusty, too, so I gently cleaned round them with a very soft toothbrush which did an extremely good job.

All in all, I was very pleased with how well Ginger has turned out after her dolly spa session. Then it was off to raid Jane's cupboard to find her something to wear :-)


 

 

 

 






Ginger loved the dress I was able to find for her, which was just as well as it was the only one of Jane's which was small enough for her!  All the others are too big so I shall be looking in the charity shops in town for baby clothes in newborn size :-)



















And here are the two sisters sitting together on "Jane's" chair.  It looks like Jane is very happy to have a sister after all these years ~ she has even given Ginger one of her teddies :-) 

Little do the girls know that they have another surprise soon ~ even more new sisters to join the family!

The Thursday Poem























As Kingfishers Catch Fire

As kingfishers catch fire, dragonflies draw flame;
As tumbled over rim in roundy wells
Stones ring; like each tucked string tells, each hung bell's
Bow swung finds tongue to fling out broad its name;
Each mortal thing does one thing and the same:
Deals out that being indoors each one dwells;
Selves-goes itself; myself it speaks and spells;
Crying What I do is me: for that I came.

I say more: the just man justices;
Keeps grace: that keeps all his goings graces;
Acts in God's eye what in God's eye he is -
Christ - for Christ plays in ten thousand places,
Lovely in limbs, and lovely in eyes not his
To the Father through the features of men's faces.

Gerard Manly Hopkins
(28th July 1844 - 8th June 1889)

from the book: Poem for the Day One

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

We had a glorious weekend...

.....but it's back to grey, cool and overcast again here in the UK *sigh*  Oh well, it isn't even quite mid-April yet, so I guess we can't expect it to be constantly sunny and warm ;-)  I expect it won't be too long before I am complaining about how hot and humid it is LOL


This just has to be one of Amber's most favourite activities ~ if you can call soaking up the sun an "activity" LOL  Our garden doesn't have any lawn so you can imagine how warm it gets out there ~ the paving acts very much like storage-heaters!  I often have to chivvy the silly doggie into the house to cool down ~ much like I have to make her move away from the wood-burner in the cold weather :-)


The first time I saw Babs doing this I was very worried ~ I thought she was ill!  But no, my loves, it would appear that she, too, likes to do a spot of sunbathing :-)  She stretches out her wing and lifts up a leg so that her underside is exposed to the sun and will lay there for a few minutes with her eyes closed and a blissful expression on her cute little chickeny face.  She is very sensible, though, and only lays out in the heat of the sun's rays for a few minutes at a time ;-)


Our neighbours gave us this apple tree last year; they had originally given it as a gift to Alan's mother but she no longer wanted it.  It is absolutely full of pretty blossom and I really hope that we get apples from it in due course.


I spotted ~ ha, ha ~ this sweet little ladybird on my currant bush and it, too, looked like it was doing a spot of sunbathing LOL  I tried to take a photo of the pretty yellow flowers on the currant but I couldn't seem to get a good picture ~ you can sort of make them out in the background of this one!


A little corner of the raised bed near the house, where I have one of my two tiny nature pools.  I just thought how pretty it looked with all that lush greenery and new growth :-)


And this, sweetie~pies, is Amber's latest hiding place beneath the dining-table.  What, I hear you ask, can she possibly be hiding from??  Well I shall tell you: flies!  Yes, my loves, you did indeed read that correctly: my doggie hides from flies!  I'm pleased to be able to report, though, that she is not alone in this strange behaviour ~ I have been told by other doggie-owners that their pooches, too, hide from the pesky little blighters.  I wonder what it is that makes our doggie friends act in this odd way.....

Hazelton ~ a miniature town

New post today :-)

Dolls' house inventory: Part Four

My loves, I'm afraid that this is very photo-heavy!  I did think about splitting these remaining photos into two posts but I told you last time that there would only be one more inventory post to come ~ hope you aren't all too tired of my collection of dolls' house miniatures ;-) 






























From my point of view, though, this has been a very worthwhile exercise sweetie~pies.  It's given me the opportunity to sort out all the things I've gathered together and in the main, I have re-packed everything like-with-like as much as possible.  Hopefully this will make it a tad easier to select what I want to put in my upcoming projects when they are completed :-)

I am starting to get very excited now, my loves, as I can make a start on those projects I keep mentioning ~ look out for a new post soon!