our hero

Sunday, 6 June 2010

Dog Judo

A rather surreal moment occurred at number 48 this evening. Ann was having a princess bath, overflowing with beautifully scented bubbles and I was giving her a good scrub down whilst she giggled away. A nice piece of classical music was playing on the radio - a rather calm and sophisticated bathtime. Until I realise that Chuck is rolling round on Ann's bed getting the dog to do judo with him. Blanco won!

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Packing a bag for hospital...

After his 3rd fall in 2 days took the FIL to Antrim hospital this morning - they are going to keep him in for a few days and by the sounds of it he is going to have a full service whilst he is there. Don't think there is anything major or sinister happening, but he has too many bits dropping off at the moment and the doctor thinks that a short stay is warranted. So just need to throw a couple of pairs of PJs in a bag along with his slippers. Travelling light!

Monday, 17 May 2010

Is this the most circuitous route...

...of getting photos onto a blog. Taken with my little Olympus, the memory card (now obsolete as the camera is so old) slots into my husband's PC, he uploads the images and stores them there. Then they are transferred onto a memory stick and then onto my laptop, where the bizarre software wants to store the pictures is some wierd file which I can't access directly. So I then have to move them into a file I do have control over.

But finally I have managed to get the evidence of my Friday Cake Bake session into Blogland. The giant cupcake raised the princely sum of £5 at the Mencap (Newtownabbey) May Fayre on saturday. We had a fun morning - the time just flew by, and there was quite a buzz at Drumross, but we won't know how much was raised until the next committee meeting.
Ooh, I fancy a cup of tea and a cupcake now!

Monday, 10 May 2010

Not just a Jack Russell...

A word of advice; if someone comes to visit with their dog and asks if your garden is dog proof and secure - because it is a lovely day and we are going to sit and chat for a while soaking up the delicious sun - think very carefully before saying yes. You may have had other dogs visit, you may even have had a dog live at your house for some time, but unless these creatures were Jack Russells then you can only say - MAYBE!!

Saturday afternoon saw Blanco and I visiting a friend just off the Upper Newtownards Road, as mentioned the sun was glorious so having ascertained that the garden was dog proof we settled down for a chat. Blanco ran about exploring; into this corner, down behind the shed into another corner - from which he didn't appear. Don't worry, Martha's garden is secure too. He didn't come back when I called him, even cheese didn't do the trick. Then I couldn't hear the tinkle that his identity tags make. The neighbour was out, so we dashed round behind the garden into the church yard. Yes, the children had seen a little white dog, but he had run out of the churchyard and down the Newtownards Road. We started down the road, calling his name, looking in gardens and asking everyone we passed. Then one girl asked if I was looking for a little white dog - the security guard at the M&S across the road had him; just then my phone rang and it was M&S calling. By the time I got to the car park, Jacqui had him in her arms, and he looked a bit upset that he hadn't had his freedom in the store.

I was so relieved, not just that I had him back, or that he had crossed a busy road without coming to harm, but that given the choice between Tesco, Spar and M&S within a 100 metres of each other he had proved he's not just a Jack Russell, he's an M&S Jack Russell.

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

All in the name...

Blanco's previous owner came for a visit last weekend, along with his 4 kids who wanted to make sure that Blanco was OK, but perhaps they could bring him home with them anyway?

We got to chatting about the origin of Blanco's name - to my knowledge neither Robert or his wife spoke spanish, so how was it that this version of 'white' was chosen. "Oh, it isn't spanish - it's from Porridge, the Ronnie Barker TV programme".
David Jason played an old man called Blanco - if only they had chosen something different. No wonder he is always trying to make a break for it - he's been named for a prisoner and an innocent one at that!
This Saturday, Chuck decided that he would attempt some recall training - we now have a 50ft lead. The idea being that he could get some distance away in the park, but still be 'under control', unfortunately as he had chewed through the special no-pull harness, this lead was attached to his normal collar. Imagine if you will the velocity that can be attained over 50ft by a very exctited little dog that wants to join the dogs on the other side of the park . The other dog owners were very impressed by how fast he could run, but not so impressed by the ease with which the collar came undone as he reached the end of the lead. Chuck let him play with the dogs for a while and then called him back, he came within 2 ft, and then promptly ran off again. The solution has begun today - he got his first set of jabs, and will go back in 2 weeks time for the last batch and to be microchipped. Then comes puppy training - I know he isn't a real puppy, but as he is a Parsons, he will always look like one, and he is a puppy to us!!

Thursday, 4 March 2010

I've been a wild rover...

Well, not so much a wild rover, but a small white dog that was let out into the back garden unnoticed when Chuck threw some crusts out for the birds...I thought something was up when he didn't come running as I got the car keys out to head down to Sailortown and I wondered if I had shut him into the study.
A search of the house gave no joy, then Chuck realised what might have happened and dashed out the back door calling for him. I opened the front door and Blanco tore in like a little hurricane - belted around the downstairs rooms like he was possessed and then settled on the settee at DA's feet. Following Cesar's advice, he was rewarded for coming home - with Petit Filous!!
There is nothing that dog loves more than getting his tongue into the bottom of a joghurt pot. It's true what they say about dogs and owners picking up each other's habits - but I thought it would take longer than 2 months. I can see Chuck and Blanco fighting over them in the future.

Saturday, 27 February 2010

Pole dancing?

Well today sees the culmination of a fairly hectic two months. Chuck and I have handed the keys of number 43 over to our lovely Polish tennants, and now we are dancing. I'm very pleased with the way everything has gone and especially that the weather, which has been somewhat of a challenge since January, didn't have any negative impact for us or our workmen.
I'm sure Sarah Beany would approve of everything that we chose to do any also those things which we chose not to do, she is a goddess in the property world and we worship at her feet. I think my favourite part of the house is the hallway/stairs/landing - pedants may argue that this is 3 parts, but I maintain that as they are not separated by any doors they are ONE.

I'm very pleased with the wardrobe doors which started life as deep purple and now sit as a monument to neutral - and only required two coats of paint. Decided not to bother with new knobs - the originals were fine - it's what SB would want.
So now I can put my time and energies back into crafting - I have orders for 12 cards, Mothers' Day is 2 weeks away and the chemist which sells my creations have asked for some specific ones. I have committed to a craft fair for next saturday - found out yesterday this will mean an early start - note to self: always ask times for events before saying YES. Cards, mug-jumpers and some notepads will be my contribution - and if I find I have time perhaps a couple of boxes. We'll see how it goes this week.

I think an afternoon nap is in order with the little white hot water bottle that is Blanco - too excited last night to sleep properly (me not he).

Monday, 22 February 2010

I second that emulsion...

Time spent at number 43 today was insufficient to tick all remaining items off the to-do list, in fact came back with additional items - not fair. The deep purple wardrobe doors will need at least one more coat of mellow magnolia and I'm fairly sure that I've missed at least one of the patches on the dining room wall. Although, I did get the main bedroom curtains hung - will need Chuck to get the pelmet up - ooh er missus!

Sunday, 21 February 2010

Dog Whisperer

Woke this morning to the whitest of light which can only mean snow. Only ventured outside briefly to put out food for the birds and try to take a couple of artsy photos. So spent most of the afternoon knitting and enjoying the wisdom of Cesar Milan. DA seemed to enjoy watching all the dogs and Blanco was mesmerised. Not sure whether it was the dogs in the shows or Cesar himself but he was so totally engrossed and looked bereft when the advert breaks interrupted his important viewing. He also took part in his first SKYPE call this afternoon - very C21 dog.

Saturday, 20 February 2010

Yes! I do want to join a book club.

Great evening yesterday, book club night. Inspired by the book made some 'Brides Fingers' - very nice Afghan treat - but ever so sweet! This month we had a few more ladies and there was more discussion than last month's book attracted. Was a bit cheeky and took my knitting - another mug jumper finished - need to find some lovely buttons now, perhaps Catherine has something suitable. I'm thinking some traditional horn ones, or possibly toggles on the creamy aran and bright colours on the beige mug jumpers; need Catherine Button's advice before deciding. Bring your button tin to Bean!!

Thursday, 18 February 2010

My blind spot...

Having successfully washed the verticals for some of the bedrooms at number 43 last week I finally got round to putting them back up today; this entailed trimming off the stray threads, spritzing with water, ironing them, sliding the weights and hangers back in before clipping them back into place. My rate is approx 26 blinds per hour - will add this to my next C.V. This evening I escaped to sailortown for more arts & crafts - have got about 3 hours of knitting done today in total; at Bean and at the art group - shame I don't have more mug jumpers to show for it. Arrived home to find Blanco snuggled up with Ann, so comfortable he barely glanced up as I came in the door - apparently they enjoyed '27 Dresses' more than Chuck did.

Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Begin at the beginning...

This is my first foray into blogging, so please bear with me whilst I find my 'voice'. Have been inspired to start by two good friends - Catherine Button & Mags. Also, just one day into Lent and am left desolate by the Facebook 'fast' that I have agreed to. Why-o-why did I agree to it! Having said that, have surprised hubby by washing the eponymous white dog and cutting his dad's hair this afternoon - note to self: think about opening a salon for old men and pets.

My reading list

  • One Shot by Lee Childs
  • The Girl who kicked the Hornet's Nest by Steig Larsson
  • The Children's Book by AS Byatt
  • The Girl who played with Fire by Steig Larsson
  • Nation by Terry Pratchett
  • The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Steig Larsson
  • No!I Don't want to join a Book Club by Victoria Ironside
  • The Bookseller of Kabul by Asne Seierstad
  • Brooklyn by Colm Toibin