Sharon & AlwaysSpecial.co.uk

Archive for November, 2009

Hey you know what?…everything ain’t “shit”..!!

by on Nov.23, 2009, under My thoughts...

Ok….I have been breathing air for over 40 years…..& I hope for a few more.

I have meet some fantastic people…done some fab things…exciting, boring, daring, scary….I have lost some very good friends & family through disease/illness,. I have witnessed the bravery & courage of a close friend & a family member face their death – something I will always carry with me…. sitting while a young mum spends her last days with her two small children will be with me forever.  I have also watched my own mum battle Cancer – twice. My father live with heart problems.  I have held the hand of someone close while they were forced to  return from a place where they hoped to find eternal peace.

I have cried on shoulders….and in return been the shoulder. I have laughed until I cannot breath….& sometimes been so drunk I thought I may never breath again! I have been so embarrassed I thought I may sink & so bursting with pride I felt I could fly.

I have been parted from special people…..only to be reunited down the years. I have bore four children and taken on a few more.

Like you…..I have lived.

 

Why am I writing this?

 

What never ceases to amaze me is the way some people always moan about how crap life is……I fully understand that YEAP…the world can sometimes deal you a crappy turn….& some people make it a crappy place to live in different parts of it……but why do we have to be so bloody pessimistic!!!!!!

 

In the words of my dearest friend Marjorie   “it may not always be tied with a bow….but life is a gift!!!”

 

I read a book a few years ago……it was full of some reminders that there are some truly great things to experience, to celebrate and just make you smile…..I will add some of my own (of course) & a couple from my dearest cyber friend ……enjoy the read… ;)

 

BACON SANDWICHES

Why do some Vegetarians fall off the wagon……one sniff of that Bacon frying…..the sight of the bread knife slicing through that freshly baked loaf of bread…..come on!!

They come in all shapes and sizes…..and it does not matter how you dress them. A long crunchy baguette filled with exotic salad lashings of Mayonnaise,  thick sliced fresh bread with melted cheese & mushrooms making love to the Bacon……or simply Bacon, buttered bread and Brown sauce…….Cup of Coffee/Tea, juices dribbling down your chin……!!!

 

Baths

Combined with any or all of the following:

a) A glass of wine.

b) Bubbles.

c) A good book.

d) someone else.

e) A decent lock…..to keep out all pets/children!!!

 

Being a “KID” for five minutes.

Go on shrug off your adult years…..set up that Scalextric set, finger paint, rearrange the furniture in the dolls house, play with play-dough, run through the leaves kicking them wildly……bet you get more out of it than a glass of alcohol!!!!!

 

Cards with cash in them.

When you are a kid (& adult) cards sre the most boring part of Birthdays, Christmas etc…..What you really want is that odd shaped, beautiful coloured, shiny present….& lots of them. So when you are faced with that white (or pastel if you are lucky!!!) envelope containing a picture of a bear holding a balloon, you know you have got to be grateful……isn’t it made so much better if when you open that card a crisp fiver…or tenner falls out……come on we have all been there!!!!!!!  ;)

 

Breaking the ice on a puddle

Once you reach a certain age…..I think girls at 8 and boys at 10 (a rough guide) you stop being magnetically attracted to rain puddles. No longer do you jump straight into them….wellies or no wellies…..you have grown up!.

A frozen puddle, is a different matter……it is almost impossible for even adults to walk past one without testing it with your foot in the illicit hope of that beautiful & satisfying crack and spider web of fractures as you break the surface. It is the sort of moment that fuels an otherwise grey day.

 

Church Bells.

Religious or not…..the ringing of Church bells on a sunny spring morning is a joy to the ears (did I mention I am lucky enough to live a stones throw from our Village Church!!!  :)    )

 

Encounters with wildlife.

Most wild animals will steer clear of us Humans…..very wise move too – we have a tendency to kill them for food, sport or out of sheer boredom. So when an otherwise shy (clever) creature happens across your path & does not instant flee – it is a privilege, those few seconds, that will seem like an eternity as you make eye contact and, for a moment acknowledge each others presence….will appear timeless & spiritual. – it is enough to humble the most cynical of us humans.

 

Covering your hand in glue.

Did you ever at School, cover your hands in the white PVA glue (which always stank) wait for it to dry….and then peel it all off? 

 

Crumpet.

Of both varieties.  The crumpet has the double honour of being delicious toasted & also the cause of much innuendo in the Carry on Films!!….BUT there are times when only a hot crumpet dripping with melted butter will do…..and should be considered a celebration of all things wonderful.

 

Having your child fall asleep in your arms/watching you child sleep

If this has happened to you….then you do not need me to explain why this is in my list.

 

Ice Cream

There are few problems or emotional crises that a spoon of ice cream cannot fix. The rejuvenating properties of ice cream are technically & medically, non existent….but whether adult or child….that creamy cold melting feeling in your mouth makes all your troubles crumble.

The origins of ice cream are steeped in mystery and lost to time & most civilisations appear to have their own versions of iced deserts. The ancient Greeks served snow mixed with honey. The Persians would use ice to create sweet confections. the Emperor Nero had ice brought down from the mountains to freeze his fruit drinks & the Indian sub-continent has been home to the dish Kulfi for hundreds of years!!!

FASCINATING FACT.

We have Margaret Thatcher to thank for “Mr Whippy” ….she was part of a research team that pioneered a way of increasing the amount of air in the ice cream, thereby making it softer and able to be served by a pump machine straight into a cone!!!

 

Autumn Sun..

Ever taken a walk in the Autumn….just as the leaves on the trees are starting to turn that glorious golden brown & gold….Dappled sunshine highlighting the beautiful colours, slight breeze lifting the leaves….the sun warming your soul.

 

Summer Sun.

Feeling the warmth on your skin, cool drinks, BBQ smells wafting over the the warm barmy evening…..daytime fun with the kids & a hosepipe, diiping your feet into the sea…..a tan that beats any make up or facial treatment!!….need I go on?

Internet Community.

One thing the internet has brought back into many of our lives is a sense of community. It may be a shame that this huge, impersonal technological beast was the catalyst for this rediscovery, but lets face it bloody glad it has!!!!

News groups, discussion forums, message boards, chat rooms, blogs, my space, social networking, there are a myriad of sites that invite our involvement. We communicate with large groups of individuals on a daily basis and on the whole our lives are enriched as a result.

I have been involved in social networking sites (mainly Twitter & Facebook) for a few months. On Twitter people are mainly brought together through common interests….sport, pets, interests…..or they simply “click” .  Facebook is generally people from your past/present/future who you know or have known. For me Facebook has reconnected me with family, old friends and present friends. Twitter has introduced me to a host of new friends from all over the world…..some I will remain friends with forever & some I have clicked with so strongly they feel as close as family members to me…..on the flip side there are some who have not been “my cup of tea” & others I tolerate.

After a funny warm session on Twitter….how do you feel? ;) in the words of my Twitter friends….PMSL..!!!!

 

Reading in bed.

Losing yourself in a good book has to be one of the most rewarding things about and the location in which we choose to read is often as important as the book  itself. Reading a book (rather than using a computer/watching a TV screen 1 hour before bed) is proven to improve the quality & benefit of the rest we get while sleeping…..so as well as being just great – it’s also the “healthy option!!!”

I must point out that included in this section is reading in the Bath….60% of ladies do it and, reading while on the loo apparently 99% of men partake in this!!!!   ;)

 

Smiles.

They do not hurt, cost nothing although can be contagious. Try one out right now. GREAT…..Now dare you to point it in someone else’s direction. see? I bet you got one back in return? Or possibly you were arrested….if that’s the case give the officer a link to my blog….it might help??? 

Better still have you ever had a child look you in the eyes, and watch a grin spread across their face until it becomes the biggest, glowing warmest smile you have ever seen?

 

Velcro.

Simply because of the noise it makes…..!!!

 

Mobile Phone Signal….

It just cracks me up everytime I see it done…..Someone rasing their arm to the sky, standing on one leg, wobbering, stretching as far as they can into the top pane of the window…………..just to get a signal on their mobile phone….  :) )

 

I will leave you on these two little lines….

 Remember this….”SUNRISES” The dawn of a brand new day, and anything seems possible…

“SUNSETS” Even if we do not succeed, there is always tomorrow…..

 

If you have anymore that you could add to this list….then message me & I will gladly  add it

 

As always…have fun….Sharon  ;)

 

Additions….

From my dearest friend Marjorie (@Stephanosis)

That Silent Magical Wonderland…

What about when you wake in the morning and it has snowed and the whole world is transformed into a hushed white wonderland. You walk carefully in it and leave the first footprints, that is truly magical, almost like the first day of a new world. x

 

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Every family needs a pup!!

by on Nov.17, 2009, under The Family

After what was a shaky start between Alethea (my little animal lover) and Tikka…it now seems the bond is well and truly cementing!!!

 

When Tikka first came….she was a VERY energetic pup who “mouth” was often to be found at “bottom level” of the kids…..since going on the BARF diet not only has she calmed down considerably, she is now responding to commands from the kids….to see my little two year Kal telling Tikka to “sit” & then rewarding her with “good girl” is simply wonderful!!! (although she still has her moments with poor Shae – insisting on dragging his trousers off whenever she meets him…..I wonder if she will be still doing that in a few years time!!!!! ;)   )

anyway I thought I’d share a moment the other day with you…..Alethea came home, jumped in Tikka’s bed…..I will let the following pics tell you the story!!!!!!

 

Hey did you miss me while I was at School?

Hey did you miss me while I was at School?

Yeah!!..come here I got to tell you something!!

Yeah!!..come here I got to tell you something!!

...come closer Lefie!!!!

...come closer Lefie!!!!

"GOTCHA!!!....with a big sloppy KISS!!!!

"GOTCHA!!!....with a big sloppy KISS!!!!

Soooooo FUNNY!!!!!!

Soooooo FUNNY!!!!!!

 

 

I guess most people may think I am completely mad taking on a puppy….as a working mum – with five kids, four cats & five goldfish…..but do you know what???

 

 

….these pictures sum up every answer I have for them.

 

Have fun & take care….Sharon  ;)

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Peshwarli

by on Nov.16, 2009, under In Memory of...

Peshwarli – “Peshi” was Ms Botsi’s full blood sister both born 30 June 1998.

 

 

Today we had to make a tough decision….to do the kindest thing for Peshi and end the potential suffering she would endure. So at 10.30 Sunday 15th November just a few weeks after losing Botsi, Peshi finally, after a battle with the Vet, lay down with me cradling her head &  talking softly into her ear,  closed those beautiful big green eyes and went to reunite with her sister.

 

Her final minutes were very traumatic, her heart was weak & so could not pump the “injection” around her system….but she was so brave, as animals so very often are. She accepted what was her fate and bore it with dignity.  It is a shame that we “superior” Homo sapiens can not learn something from the animal kingdom….they never complain, bare pain & discomfort with dignity & are loyal…always  :(

 

 

Peshi’s life was a real rollercoaster….she suffered from “nerves” and on a few occasions had been on steroids in order to calm her…..but she was always faithful to those close to her.  Headbutts being her speciality she could knock a drink out of your hand with just one headbutt!!!!

 

 

From a kitten she chose to sleep on my feet….each night she would bound up the stairs, wait until I got into bed, then circle up and down the bed until she flopped on my feet….and there she would stay. When I was in hospital having given birth to my first baby….the only thing I missed was the weight of Peshi on my feet!!

 

Peshi was a beautiful, soft, kind hearted, gentle soul to those who she worshipped…..people who she did not like or know, were given one of her best hisses….then she would run and hide.

 

I am sure she has found peace within her soul up at Rainbow Bridge, where she can trust everyone. I know she will forgive us for the decision we made….and that she passed on hearing my voice telling her to give that sister of hers a big kiss…..goodnight my brave Peshi…*X* 

 

May I Go

 

 

Do you think the time is right?
May I say goodbye to pain filled days and endless lonely nights?
I’ve lived my life and done my best, an example tried to be.
So can I take that step beyond, and set my spirit free?
I didn’t want to go at first, I fought with all my might.
But something seems to draw me now to a warm and living light.
I want to go, I really do; it’s difficult to stay.
But I will try as best I can to live just one more day.
To give you time to care for me and share your love and fears.
I know you’re sad and afraid, because I see your tears.
I’ll not be far, I promise that, and hope you’ll always know,
That my spirit will be close to you wherever you may go.
Thank you so for loving me. You know I love you too,
And that’s why it’s hard to say goodbye and end this life with you.
So hold me now just one more time and let me hear you say,
Because you care so much for me, you’ll let me go today

 

Peshi

Peshi

 

Sharon

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BARF – The only way to go

by on Nov.10, 2009, under The Family

After picking our pup up from Joanne Clayton I had two weeks of “cow pat” poos from Tikka…..she went off the food that she had gobbled up with Joanne (Eukanuba) refusing to eat it with….so some very quick research lead me to James Wellbeloved…..a natural comercial dry dog food, thinking that Tikka might be suffering from a reaction to the Eukanuba. The first couple of meals she cleared her dishes, breathing a sigh of relief (this was worse than weaning the four kids!!!!!) ………………but I was still getting half a dozen to a dozen cow-pats a day (& night).

The problem was surely these “cow-pats” were not doing poor pup any good?  & although she was very good letting me know when she wanting to go out…..cleaning down her “toilet” area each time was becoming very laborious!!!

Then came her second lot of vaccinations…..within 24 hours her poo had got worse and within three days she actually had blood in. After talking to our Vet, Tikka was fasted for 18 hours and then placed on Chicken & rice…..Her first solid poo was cheered (pathetic I know!!!)

Not wanting to put her back on comercial Dog food….I spent what seemed like 24 hours glued to the Internet soaking up every last piece of information I could lay my hands on…..the end result was

 

BARF

 

BARF stands for Biologically Appropriate Raw Food or Bones and Raw Food. This diet is all about feeding dogs (and cats) properly and returning them to their evolutionary diet.

A Biologically Appropriate diet for a dog is one consisting of raw whole foods similar to those eaten by the dogs’ wild ancestors. The food must contain such things as muscle meat, bone, fat, organ meats, vegetable and fruit materials combined in precisely the correct balance just as Mother Nature intended…..so that’s exactly what she was put on.

 

Why did she suddenly have loose stools on the commercial diet?

 

She had been weaned successively on Eukanuba…and was eating and pooing nice firm stools. However the day before she came to live with us she had her first vaccination. The following day she had diarrhea (we thought the change & parting from her siblings may be the reason). Her stools continued to be “cow-pat” until after her second vaccination, they then became very loose and also had blood in them. Now the connection with the vaccinations lead me to research even further.

 

It is my belief that the vaccination has caused Tikka Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) which had lead to her becoming very sensitive to the commercial dried dog food. Not only did she have loose/diarrhea, she also suffered from the most horrendous wind (believe me she could clear a room!!!!)….she was also VERY excitable and a little nippy (which of course we put down to her being a pup!!). Another symptom she had was constant scratching, she was de-flead when we got her and another application two weeks later, but still she scratched!!!!!

 

and now?

 

After being on the BARF diet for nearly one week I now have a contented puppy whose stools are firm, have no odour at all and she only “toilets two/three times per day (sleeps all through night!!!!!), her scratching has decreased dramatically, her coat is glossy & she seems calmer (OK she still has her mad loopy Labradoodle moments) but she is more responsive to commands and has stopped all nipping……and above all NO BAD WIND PROBLEMS!!!!!!!!! At meal times she whines with excitement & when the kids have a piece of fruit it is absolutely lovely to watch a 11 week old puppy offering a paw very gently in return for a piece of apple or segment of orange!!!

Most of you who read this know that I have five children and work from home so preparing Tikka’s food on a daily basis would be virtually impossible…..so after again trawling the Net I came across what looked to be a fantastic alternative… www.naturalinstinct.com who have been kind enough to allow me to “sing their praises” . There are a few UK based companies out there who actually produce a “ready-made” BARF diet up that you simply order and rip open then feed your dog….but what struck me most about NaturalInstinct was the fact that they truly believe in what they are producing, having fed their own Welsh Terrier, Maggie, who HAD suffered from ear problems. The site was simple to use & not too commercial/glossy looking. The support via e-mail was fantastic (hey OK I might be an experiencedmum….but young puppies are a different ball-game!!!!)…..anyway I am so impressed by them, the product and Tikka’s improvement (& waggy tail/clean bowl!!!!!) have just ordered the next 10 weeks (or so) food from them. 

 

You might be thinking “that sounds expensive”……it’s not!!! £2.30 – £2.90 will get you a 1kg bag of food…for Tikka this is actually divided into 5 meals (the “recommended” average states that puppies should be fed up to 10 % of their body weight. Therefore, if your pup weighs 10 lbs you should feed 1 lb of food divided between 3 or 4 feedings per day…..For Tikka the cost is approximetly £1.50 per day…probably less than it would cost for three tins of Dog food……She does have treats of fruit & raw veg & dried Liver & every other night has a raw bone for her “tea-time” meal, after being fed the “bulk” of comerical food she took some adapting to the smaller portions….but has now settled and now appears content on the amount ;)

 

While I fully appreciate the opposite side of the coin…..

Parasites and Bacteria

One of the biggest concerns about feeding dogs raw bones and meat is the risk of contamination (of both dog food and human food surfaces) with bacteria such as salmonella and E. coli. But to be honest my family have raw food placed upon the surfaces most evenings before it is cooked, I have never had any problems yet!!!!. While raw meat may carry these kind of bacteria, they have also been found in commercial kibble and other foods, and a more wholesome diet may equip the body better to deal with the inevitable infections and parasites by boosting the immune system.

Bacteria and parasites may be picked up any number of other places – such as sniffing or licking other dogs at the park, or walking over ground where another animal has defecated and later licking paws clean. Every animal will be exposed to parasites in bacteria – but for the sake of minimizing risks, some owners prefer to avoid the raw meat BARF diet, However after Tikka has licked her bowl clean(!!!) usually 5 minutes, I take the bowl up and it is washed ready for next time.

Some veterinarians claim there is an increased risk of seizures and other bacteria-related illness in dogs who are fed raw; other vets claim to have seen no BARF-related bacteria or parasitic infections and even recommend BARF.

Is BARF a “Balanced Diet”?

Commercial kibble manufacturers claim that their foods are nutritionally balanced and perfect for every dog. In fact, there is very little research on pet nutrition….I strongly believe that just taking a good look at your dog will tell you everything you need to know & it is what works for you & your dog.

Bone Splinters

There is some concern about bone splinters, even from raw bones, causing internal damage to the esophagus and intestine of pets.

Fans of the BARF plan are insistent that raw bones do not splinter and are safe for dogs to chew and ingest. Raw bones are also said to be an ideal source of calcium, amino acids (protein), minerals, and other nutrients…..The other night Tikka was feed a raw Chicken wing (she has had two before no problems) however she swallowed the one half of the wing completely much to my horror (she is never left alone with a bone) all because she wanted to play with the cat!!!!. Now I knew the bone had to come out & was praying her intestine would cope with it, however her system went one better, three hours after eating the bone she literally threw it up, all that she eaten had passed through her safely the bone came back up on it’s own!!! She was not ill she just “got rid” of what she did not need!!

There are persuasive arguments in favor of and against feeding a dog raw food. Ultimately, the decision is that of the pet owner and must depend on the veterinarian’s recommendations as well as the health and specific needs of the dog….for Tikka and me?

 

Waggy tail at meal times tells me everything!!!!!!!

One Happy Puppy!!!!

One Happy Puppy!!!!

 

 

Although Tikka being the intelligent Puppy that she is……can often take the BARF diet a little too far……Bones & Raw Meat do NOT include poor old Mr Corky!!!!!!!

 

Nice try Tikka!!!!

Tikka & her best friend Mr Corky!!!

Tikka & her best friend Mr Corky!!!

 

If you have experienced the BARF diet….good or bad please leave me a comment….Have fun  ;)

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