Friday, 14 September 2012

The Destructive Force of Dementia

Rather than continue weeping into my coffee, I thought writing stuff down might release some of the pain that I'm feeling right now.  After a progressive worsening of dementia-like symptoms over recent months, my 78-year old Auntie has now slid into rapid descent into the need for 24/7 care and yesterday I finally took her to a residential care home.  Although for the best, in terms of her safety and for her need for help in walking, washing, toileting and dressing, as well as proper meals and ensuring she receives the various medications she now has to take, this has hit me hard.  So too my 86-year old Uncle who made the courageous decision to admit that her needs were now such, that care at home was no longer sufficient and after 50-plus years of marriage, will have to now face life alone.  How empty and quiet their house now is - gone is the vibrant, noisy presence that was my Auntie, although in recent months that person had already started to slip away.  Instead a silence made all the more poignant at the sight of all her crazy clutter still as it was left.  Long gone is that vigorous, energetic, funny, intelligent, capable woman, who organised everything - perhaps always her nature or also from the many years spent as a primary school headteacher.  Now is left a shell of that person, whose physical and mental form has significantly diminished.  This feels like a bereavement, although the person is still alive.  Damn dementia!!  A cruel illness or condition or whatever it is, that twists like a knife into the family members and friends who have to see their loved one spiralling downwards in terms of mental and physical capacity.  I don't feel any better for having written this, I just feel angry and upset at the irony that as my lovely baby niece was being born and I became an Auntie myself, my own Auntie is succumbing to a foggy, wobbly blur.  Life sure does throw some shit don't it!

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

If You Go Down to the Woods Today....

You may or may not get a big surprise!  Is that how the rhyme goes?!  Oh gosh taking note of my previous post about the car, I really am having nursery rhymes in my mind already!!  Well - note to self - don't go down to the woods for a late evening walk with the dogs if you're of a nervous disposition!!  It wasn't memories of the 'Blair Witch' film or spooky ghosties this time, it was the fear of meeting the Bogeyman or some real-life unsavoury character!  A couple of times during daytime walks I have noticed one or two lone chaps lurking about and have nevertheless avoided crossing their path on these occasions - so trying to be rational about why this should be unnerving, went along the lines of - he's probably stopped for a breather, or to light a cigarette, to then imagining that maybe something more sinister was the reason for their loitering in the woods.  Waiting to do a drugs deal, or commit an assault of some sort??  Who knows??  What possessed me to go through the woods I have no idea that evening, but I just kept on walking despite being a bit apprehensive to start with.  By the time I was too far in to turn back, I was positively wracked with fear!  I could actually hear male voices around and with the fading light started to hurry the three of us along - when near the road, I got the biggest fright of my life as a passing car's headlights shone through and momentarily lit up a great big bulky object just up ahead!  What I thought it was, is anyone's guess, but I quickly recovered from nearly jumping ten foot in the air, when I realised it was just a huge rotten piece of tree trunk that was lying nearby! :))  We thankfully made it home in one piece, dogs blissfully unaware of the terror I had experienced due to my imagination running wild that night.  They had a drink of water and me.....a stiff alcoholic drink!  Too right!!

Monday, 2 July 2012

New Car - Dogmobile or Babymobile??!!

Well I've had to change my car.  Poor old Octavia the Skoda will move on to pastures new!  In its place I have just acquired a tatty Focus Zetec C-Max.  Nothing flash - that's not my style - just cheaper to tax and to run - now, that's my style!  However this new car has made me feel funny things! I took it on a test drive and felt all mumsy all of a sudden!!  Although a small car, it does have the feel of a people carrier as the seats are quite high and so I feel all high up!!  (Or maybe I need to re-adjust the driver's seat!)  On the test drive, it had the previous owner's child-seat in the back (not the child though!) and it did feel rather strange driving around with this in the back - I felt a bit like a mummy!!  Even though the car will be transporting work equipment and my dogs, it feels like it's in the wrong role and should have children in there instead!  How weird!  I don't feel broody as such, but just like there should be a child in the back and not dogs!!  (by the way I am not wishing that there were children instead of my gorgeous dogs - it's merely an observation!) Hmmm!  After the dogs have been in there a few times it should take on more of a dogwagon feel! - and as long as I don't start singing nursery rhymes, I think it should pass!!  Think it was the child-seat, discarded Fruit Shoot bottles and crisp remnants that threw me - soon it will be dog-hair, mud and smeared dog-snot on the windows to correct this picture!! :))

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Bluebells, Boots and BBQ Weather!!

So the sunshine has finally arrived at long last!  If this keeps up, the BBQ will have to put in an appearance pretty soon!  This sudden change to warm weather and blue skies, spurred me on to do a spot of spring cleaning today (at long last!) so I decided to spruce up my kitchen with my sample of Zoflora Bluebell Woods Disinfectant - (please see Reviews page, for my review on this lovely product).  After transforming my kitchen into a gleaming, freshly-scented paradise, I felt compelled to go via the woods, when walking the dogs, to further enjoy the real 'carpet' of bluebells that stretch as far as the eye can see!  So despite the scorching sunshine, I donned my wellies as usual - yes, yes! - bluebells there may be in those woods, but there's also dog-poo lurking in the growing greenery on the woodland floor!  If you've read my earlier posts, you'll know about my dog-poo phobia!  Perish the thought of treading in any 'nasty' stuff and ruining my good mood - however I saw one of my dogs accidentally step in a pile whilst foraging about - aargghh! - don't worry though, I'm not about to get welly boots for my dogs to wear too, they just have to wipe their feet on the grass and job's done! 

Monday, 14 May 2012

Drunken / Thoughtless Litterbug Morons!

Sorry but a rant is nigh!!  Who in their right mind smashes a beer bottle into the grass in a public park, where children and dogs run about?!!  I've lost count of the number of times I've had to stop and pick up pieces of glass bottle, to prevent some poor innocent child or dog from becoming terribly injured from the debris left by some selfish idiot!  While I'm at it, why do people think it's acceptable to leave behind all their drinks bottles and food rubbish after watching a football match on the playing fields?  The pitch is literally marked out by a rectangle-shape trail of litter, post-match - just who do these people think is going to pick up after them?  And leaving chicken bones in the fast food rubbish is very dangerous for dogs that naturally go scavenging through the rubbish left behind after some moron's feast!  Aargh!!!  Well here's a thought - I wonder what their houses are like if they are that averse to picking up their rubbish - yuk!!  Lazy so and so's!!  (hey that's mild for me!!) :o))

Monday, 7 May 2012

Bank Holiday Poochy Pamper Day!

Yes the pooches had a lovely day of being pampered!  Instead of doing the housework, I decided my dogs' personal hygiene was more important!  They had their ears cleaned out - no more potatoes growing in there!  Teethies cleaned!!  Toenails clipped!!  Pretty little girls!!  Before anyone thinks otherwise - my dogs are real 'doggy' dogs - they don't suffer being dressed up in clothes or bling-bling!  They roll in fox-poo and eat revolting things they find on their walks.  They lick their bums and eat their own sick straight after!  ...and the things I've had to clear up in my time!  Long gone is my phobia of sick and poo - (but only when it concerns my own!! I still wear wellies all year round - see my first posts for this to make sense! - it's true what they say about you only being able to cope with your own baby's mess and not that of others!)  They get a bath from year to year using baby shampoo, but on the whole, don't smell of horrible dog-smell.  Their dogginess shines through and what may horrify the average non-dog-owner, I find completely normal 'cos they are dogs at the end of the day!  I spare a thought for all those little handbag dogs who are denied the enjoyment of being a dog - just makes me chuckle to imagine them farting and licking their bums and sticking two fingers up at their owners when they leave the room at the indignity of being polished and preened and dressed up in a ballerina tutu or whatever costume their owners impose on them!!    

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

The Uses of Empty Pot Noodle Pots!

Now I'm not a regular consumer of the good old Pot Noodle, but sometimes they do satisfy a big hunger when you need something hot and filling inside you on a cold wintry day and you're in a hurry! Oooerr missus!!  Within minutes of adding the boiling water to the dried up contents of the pot, hey presto!......a hearty, filling snack to stave off the effects of lowered blood sugar after hours of not eating anything since breakfast and provide enough energy to survive walking the dogs in the horrible weather.  I have found though, that instead of throwing the empty container into the bin, they serve many useful purposes:  filling with water and soaking the dogs' Kong toys, so the remnants of what food was stuffed inside, will clean off easier.  They can also be used to hold the Kong toy in place whilst stuffing it with tasty food treats for doggy to enjoy, or to enable dry kibble to soak inside with warm water to make a yummy mash for a doggy tongue to extract!  They can also be used to hide food treats under and your clever doggy has to work out how to get the treat out from underneath - pushing with his nose, paw or simply lifting it up in his mouth and tossing the pot aside!  Who knew how versatile the Pot Noodle pot could be?  So next time I am frowned upon for buying 'junk food', it's for the purposes of 'dog things', not because I can't be bothered to cook a proper meal!! :))

Monday, 26 March 2012

Sunday Morning Snuggles

As a special treat some Sunday mornings, I allow the dogs upstairs to come and snuggle on the bed with us.  I have no problems with dogs sleeping on their owner's bed, but my dogs are quite big and take up a lot of room - one prefers lying across the pillows - and with one great snoring lump in the bed already in the form of 'im indoors, I have to draw the line somewhere!  Besides, whilst we only have the one bed, my two doggies have about five dog beds to choose from, as well as the settee so they are hardly deprived!  Anyhow on these special mornings (usually the day when I plan to change the bedclothes!) they are welcome up!  The closeness of all us cuddled up together and hearing their contented little snores whilst snoozing after their breakfast, are one of the best things in the world!  Yesterday however, with the clock change, they really took advantage of it and wouldn't get up for their walk! It was me champing at the bit to go out to enjoy the lovely Spring morning sunshine!  Think they were making the most of a good thing - especially as Sunday morning snuggles on this occasion had turned out to be Saturday evening snuggles as Mummy went to bed early for once and had allowed them upstairs to keep me company....... and they had stayed there all night!

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Child at Heart!

Think my lovely other half is inadvertently letting his inner child show!  At Christmas he was the one who kept asking when we would put up the tree and decorations and yesterday - a Sunday!- he was up extra early to see the snow that had been falling in the night!!  What's happened to him?  Now into his forties, he's getting excited about things he used to say were 'silly' (or maybe he was just pretending back then and secretly was bursting with excitement whenever I said we need to get the Christmas decorations up!)  It used to be 'bah humbug!', moan, moan, moan etc. and used to just get the tree out of the loft, assemble it, put the lights on it (something I just cannot do for lack of patience and artistic eye) and then say I could do the rest!  So I used to transform the house into Christmasland and he'd say 'you're not all there!', but had a little grin on his face nevertheless when seeing the end result!  Well the past couple of Christmases he has wanted to put the decorations on the tree, put the other christmassy things around the house and was even looking forward to spending some Christmas time with me!  For the first time in 18 years we had Christmas dinner together! What?  Well better that way round, than to get grumpier as he gets older - perhaps this year he might offer to go and do the shopping for me!! :))

Dressed to Impress??

Or just plain daft?   On seeing a young girl teetering along in high heels and barely any covering to her legs apart from a thin pair of tights in this cold icy weather, I must be getting older, as these days I find myself saying the things my elders used to say when I was a child! - 'She must be cold, you'd think she'd wear a coat,' or 'She'd rather look fashionable than wrap up warm!' or 'That's not a skirt, that's a belt!' etc.
But it was when walking my dogs the other day when the temperature was barely above freezing, that I had to roll my eyes in disbelief!  A lady who regularly walks her dogs where I do, was coming along hunched up against the cold and on seeing me, proceeded to complain how cold it was - I said to her that wearing a hat would help enormously to keep warm, but she replied that she looked stupid in a hat!  Honestly, when it's so cold who cares?  I rather be warm wouldn't you?! 
Then what annoyed me the most, seeing as she'd only just come out of her house with her dogs, she said it was too cold for her she was going back home - so the dogs were denied a walk because she wasn't suitably dressed!  Now I know there's not a specific uniform for dogwalking (apart from compulsory wellies for me! - if you read my first ever posts, you'll understand why!) but walking the dogs in freezing icy conditions in a field that takes on the feel of Siberia, whilst wearing silly little shoes, a skirt, no hat or gloves and a thin little jacket best suited for a shopping trip, is just ridiculous!  Don't bloody moan then that you're cold - go and get changed into something warmer and bloody well give those dogs a decent walk!!  Now there's snow on the ground today it's going to be interesting to see who braves it out and whether they forfeit fashion sense for warmth!!

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

To Grey or not to Grey!?? That is the Question!!

Whilst chatting with a fellow blogger on the subject of the appearance of grey hairs, it occurred to me - when does a lady just succumb to the grey and no longer fight against it with hair dye?  When do I just become a 'silver-surfer'?  OK I'm turning 41 in 3 months time, but nevertheless have rather a lot of white, not just grey, hairs just springing up all over my head!  Foils and tints at the hairdressers just don't cut the mustard now, so last year I succumbed to an all over permanent to hide the white!  However judging at the speed with which the little blighters re-appear, it's going to take money and time to try and maintain a youthful look!  So ladies, when is the age and for what final reason is it that more senior females amongst us sport the 'looks-like-my-lovely-Nanna-look'??

Monday, 30 January 2012

Dizzy Days!!

What's wrong with me today!??  Is it the cold getting to my brain, or lack of sleep due to a darling doggy waking me, wanting to go out to the toilet at 3.40am and then not being able to get back to sleep!? Or is it my age!!?  For a split second this morning I thought I had forgotten my PIN number when paying for diesel for my car!!  Thankfully it came back to me but what if I get another 'senior moment'? Should I write it down and keep it about my person?!  What a disaster if I had got to the checkout and loaded up a huge load of shopping in the supermarket and then forget the PIN number!?  Then just now I nearly put a bottle of red wine in the fridge!!  Aaargh!!  Disaster!  I've already done that last year and opened up a bottle eagerly anticipating the refreshing cold taste of a glass of white wine after a hectic day, only to see COLD red wine flowing into the glass - tasted disgusting by the way - so impatient was I to wait for it to reach room temperature I glugged it down!!  With the weather about to turn colder and another day older too, I can only expect more 'dizzy dolly' moments!! 

Thursday, 26 January 2012

The Doggy Popcorn Episode!

Had a complete panic yesterday!  Jess, one of my gorgeous dogs, decided to eat a load of the 'wotsit' polystyrene-type 'nuggets' used for packaging in boxes!  Empty box in the porch, left there for putting out with the recycling, 'nuggets' still inside.  She'd investigated the box earlier and decided it wasn't of interest but the moment I go outside to put something in the dustbin, I return to find her munching a mystery something which I immediately realise what, when she then dived over to the box and grabbed a mouthful of the 'nuggets'!  Shit!  Couldn't believe she'd done that and that if only I'd disposed of the 'nuggets' earlier!  So panic-stricken that they would expand inside her, or poison her, I called the vet to be told that they'd probably dissolve but if any problems to bring her straight down.  Thankfully little monkey is OK and those 'nuggets' I'm told, are made from corn starch, so really she'd eaten something like popcorn!  They didn't even swell when I put a couple into a cup of water and did crush down to nothing when I squished one in my hand!  Phew!!  Next time I go to the cinema I'll check carefully what they've covered in salt or sugar, in case they've decided to sell me 'packaging nuggets' instead of the real thing!  At least they'd be quieter to eat though!!!

Monday, 16 January 2012

I Can't Believe......'s January and there's daffodils out in bloom!  A whole bank of them all happily waving their yellow heads around in Windsor last week!  Hope they're not too shocked by this cold snap!  I can't believe Christmas came and went so quick - well the Christmas tree all packed up in its box, still standing in the living room, waiting to get put back in the loft is a reminder that just four weeks ago we were getting all geared up for it and now it's a distant memory!  I can't believe we still haven't put the Christmas tree back in the loft!!  I can't believe yet again we have a Christmas pudding left over - why do I buy 2 when we only ever eat one!?  I can't believe I have to fill up my car with diesel yet again! Boring! (and expensive!)  I can't believe we're halfway through January already - this time last year I was still in my 30's - now I'm in my 40's!  I can't believe I'm still awake and not asleep on the settee - blogging at night prevents me zonking out whilst watching the news, cup of tea in hand!  On that note bed is calling, so off I go...but not before adding yet again...I can't believe I'm going to be an Aunty!  :))

Monday, 9 January 2012

My Blog's Gorn Public!

Thanks Netmums for having me on your Bloggers Network, as of today!  Scary biscuits!  People might read what I blog! - but then, duh!!! that was the general idea!!  I feel like a new Mum - so proud to bring forth my creation to the world!!  ("Oh get over yourself, Suzanne," I hear you say - "it's a blog, not a baby!!")   Nevertheless, I will help my little 'blogchild' entertain you and hope you enjoy watching 'it' grow.  For now, bedtime is calling - oh but damn, so is that pile of washing up in the sink!

Friday, 6 January 2012

I'm going to be an Aunty!!

Well it's now official - I'm allowed to announce that I'm going to be an Aunty!  Yes my little brother will become a father in July!  And I will be an Aunty!!  Yes - see I'm so excited, I keep saying it!!  Looking forward to this year's Christmas shopping already!!  Those little Christmassy clothes for babies are so cute!!  Roll on July, I want to meet my new nephew or niece already - from your scan photo, you're looking good already babe!!

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

The Flying Dog Poo!!

Anyone in the UK today knows how windy it is!  It was like Armageddon this morning - squalling winds and lashing rain - floods everywhere - if these are just gales, as described on the weather report, imagine what hurricanes and typhoons must be like!  Nearly had a mishap picking up the dog poo this morning!  'Him indoors' bends down in the lashing wind this morning, poo bag in hands, stands up straight on successfully scooping the poop, only to have the bag literally ripped out of his hands!!  Contents of poo bag fly out into the air, whilst empty bag whizzes airborne away and across the field!!  Good job I started to laugh just a split second later and not before, else I'd have been hit in the face!!  Talk about getting egg on your face! Shit happens!  Haha!!

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Self-Employed versus Working for the Man!!

Well 10 years ago I had a full-time job and a steady salary every month - these days I'm at the mercy of good ol' supply and demand!  It has taken quite some time to re-adjust to the change in work culture when switching to self-employment.  For instance, not being able to take for granted that there's X-amount of money coming in each month - instead you just hope for a busy month!  Difficult, given these economic climes!  If you're sick you don't get paid, likewise, days off don't come into the question - for the same reason!  However what I do like - is being my own boss, planning the days when I take bookings for dog-work and now more recently, Phoenix work.  I enjoy working from home and preparing my Phoenix brochures, researching events and contacting organisers.  Receiving Phoenix stock and preparing customer orders for delivery.  Report writing for dog behaviour work and preparing for classes!  Chatting with dog owner clients and making appointments for one-to-one training sessions!  And blogging about it all and updating social media sites!  I even love doing my accounts every month!  The best thing of all is being able to spend more time with my lovely dogs - I now get to walk them and play and train them - all of us are much happier as a result!  I hope to get busier to ensure that there'll not be a return to commuting in the rush hour to a place where the work is dreary and for which I have little passion and where office politics and stress reign!  It is with that in mind that I'll continue working hard to endeavour that this woman will not return to working for da man!  :))

New Products for 2012!

Christmas has come and gone in the blink of an eye!  It seems to be true that the older you get, the faster time flies by!  Well what's next to celebrate??  Good ol' fashioned lurve!!!  There are loads of cards in the Phoenix range with a Valentines Day theme - please see my beautiful website

New Year, New Blog!

Happy New Year!  With the New Year has come a brainwave!  Why not share with you all, my experiences as an Independent Phoenix Trader!??  The beauty of the business is that there are no targets or pressure imposed by the company - just as well! as in the last year since I joined, I've not done much with my Phoenix business other than sell to friends and family!  Hence why I've not blogged about it up 'til now!  But now - in 2012, the Phoenix will rise, so to speak - already booked in for a handful of events and customers asking for the new brochure already - looks set to be a promising year!