Why Pick a Greyhound?

I have decided to reboot this post again as NorthWest Dog Rescue have a few of this amazing breed that desperately need a loving home. You would be so lucky to have one. . . Or a lovely lurcher for that matter. Please have a look http://twitter.com/NWDogRescue/status/465591027085357056/photo/1

Furrbuddies

Ah if I had a pound for every time I’d heard the following when out on our dog walk:

“I’ll bet he takes some walking doesn’t he?”

Then I’d have . . . Well, lots of pounds. Part of the charm of being the proud owner of one of these awesome creatures is – surprisingly to some – the fact they are pretty low maintenance.

When we decided we wanted to take on a retired racing greyhound, we went to the Lincolnshire Greyhound Trust and were given a choice of two that were suitable. (We have cats. This narrowed our choice slightly but don’t assume a grey is a no-go if you have feline friends too.) One was new to the kennel – a very pretty petite girl, silver grey in colour (or ‘blue’ to use the proper description) and a lovely temperament who presented herself beautifully.

We were given…

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The One About Her Imagination

Gibby has an imagination – don’t all kids at that age? But it has to be said – hers does seem to be particularly active and oh . . . my . . . goodness it is constant.

We have several imaginary friends – sometimes Captain Hook, sometimes a girl called Betty, but mostly a character called Spike. As imaginary friends go though it has to be said, Spike doesn’t do an awful lot. He often chooses to go to work with Daddy rather than accompany her to nursery, and annoys her greatly by having a lie in most days when she is ready to play. Occasionally I have to set an extra place for him at the table, or be selective where I sit so as not to squash him, but luckily, he shrinks at night to fit into the doll’s house and sleep there, so at least I’m not making up a spare bed.

Spike is either a little boy with purple hair and big black eyes, or a giant spider that likes going on the trampoline. So that’s nice.

We also have a bit of a sleep issue, and I’m struggling to find any help with this one. Getting her off to sleep is fine. She doesn’t have nightmares/sleepwalk/want to come in with us either. She just decides that she’s wide awake, any time between the hours of 1-4 and for a good hour or two. This usually comes to my attention when she wakes me up by chatting to someone pretend, having a little sing-song, or seeing how fast she can clap – all without leaving her bed. No amount of soothing or ignoring seems to affect her ability to drop off again, and she is subsequently a pain in the **** to get out of bed the following morning. Last night I stuck my head round her bedroom door after hearing some jiffling:

“MUMMY!” ***Ridiculously loud whisper*** I can’t sleep again.”
“Never mind sweetheart, just try deep breaths and snuggle down.”
“BUT MUMMY, THERE ARE FOURTEEN CHEEKY GHOSTS KEEP COMING IN MY ROOM AND KEEP SNATCHING MY BOBBLES OUT AND I TELL THEM NOT TO BUT THEY KEEP COMING BACK AND I CAN’T SLEEP.”

“Er . . . ok. Well never mind, ghosts can’t hurt you and . . . ”

“BUT MUMMY” ***hand is put by the side of her mouth in a conspiratorial fashion *** “THEY HAVE REALLY BIG EYES, AND THEIR EYES GROW AND GROW AND THEN THERE ARE TINY LITTLE PEOPLE LIVING IN THEIR EYES, AND THE TINY PEOPLE ARE KEEPING ME AWAKE ASWELL SINGING A SILLY SONG.”

“Gibby have you been dreaming?”

“NO MUMMY, I JUST TOLD YOU THEY WOKE ME UP. DREAMING IS WHEN I AM ASLEEP.”

She looks at me matter-of-factly and not in the least upset or frightened whilst I struggle for an appropriate reaction.

“DON’T WORRY. IF THEY COME BACK, I WILL MAGIC THEM AWAY WITH MY MAGNIFYING GLASS.” (She brandeshes said magnifying glass proudly – she currently insists on sleeping with it every night in place of a teddy , but that’s a whole other blog post.)

And so I’ll take myself off to my own bed and fall back to sleep whilst listening to her Gibbling away in the next room, casting spells, banashing ghosts, and other general gibbliness.

When she finally does awake in the morning, we are instantly plunged into a world of fantasy again. “Mummy, there was lots of bumble bees under my bed that woke me up trying to tickle my toes.” Or perhaps it was a wicked witch, or a giant, or a dinosaur, or even one of the dearly departed pets we lost last year.

We have mythical beings around every corner, nook and cranny. It’s mostly fantastic, but it’s also exhausting, and it can get a bit too much as well. Imaginary play is one thing, but full blown hysterics because she cannot turn herself invisible (and absolute FURY with us when we giggle at her insistence that she definately could do it yesterday) – well that’s a bit of a worry – as are the tears and massive upset when she can’t make magical powers come out of her hands. It can definitely get beyond the point that is funny.

When does imagination actually cross the line and become a worry rather that a joy? When does being imaginative turn into having an “over-active imagination” if indeed there is such a thing? I certainly don’t enjoy watching her genuinely distraught as a result of her inability to possess superpowers, and I am finding myself more and more at a loss of what to say to her.

And PLEEEEEASE . . .  someone tell me how to get her to sleep . . . ??

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Flowers.

Gibby is going through a phase at the moment that is both charming and annoying in equal measure. Some weeks ago, she was playing in the garden and came rushing inside to present me with a flower. A dandelion to be exact. “Here you go Mummy, I picked this sunshine flower for you!”

“Aaaawwwwww thank you sweetheart” I gushed, and hugged my little flower fairy tight. After all, how flippin’ sweet is that? Whether it’s a big beautiful bouquet from your other half (I’m sure that must have happened at some point if memory serves) or a daffodil from your daughter – who doesn’t love to get flowers? It struck me as a thoroughly sweet and thoughtful thing for a little girl to do and I treasured that moment. I have been genuinely moved by the excitement Grace has shown by the arrival of Spring. She has been fascinated with it, and seems to find a very deep and genuine joy in all kind of flowers, trees, bugs and the like. I love this about her.

However, since the dandelion event I have been presented with a gradually increasing number of further dandelions/daisies/contents of next door’s flower tubs (sorry if you’re reading this) and general floral paraphernalia several times a day. Every day. Every walk – be it a long one in the countryside with the dogs or a short one from the car door to the front door – cannot go uninteruppted every three steps or so in joyous rapture at the discovery and picking of the nearest weed.

I have gone from placing the snippings lovingly in little water-filled glasses around the house, to thanking her in earnest and subtly chucking them away round the nearest corner when she isn’t looking. Bad Mummy . . . I know.

Over the weeks I have discovered dead rotting flowers in various forms throughout the house, the car, handbags, shoes, on patio tables, in animal beds and even in the fridge! (I have no recollection of that one.)

So before one of you lot comment I’ll say it first:

Yes! I shall try my utmost to relish the flower-giving phase, before she grows up, hormones kick in, and I’m privileged to receive so much as eye contact, let alone a dandelion and a hug.

I think it’s worth putting up with a bit of random flora and forna in exchange for such a nature-loving little being anyway.

Good job none of us have hayfever really!

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Armstrong’s Twisted Fish -A Review.

I’m very happy to share with you my first review as a pet blogger! I know many readers of Water Birth Please are also dog owners, and like me want the very best for their furry family member. Armstrong’s Twisted Fish are a dog treat made from 100% fish skin. Super healthy and the hounds LOVE them.

Click here to read the review in full, or the picture below to go straight to the website. Meanwhile, enjoy the bank holiday! Next post a pre-school book review. (Or possibly a rant about Gibby’s extraordinary behaviour lately!!)

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Show Me Show Me. . . A CBeebies App!

Ah what a fab day we had . . .

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Our house-hold is very big on CBeebies. We don’t have sky, Disney channels and the like. I really don’t see the need when the BBC do it so darn well. There are no characters with attitude, no bad behaviours to copy however innocent it can seem, and – a bit of a geeky Mum comment here – with pretty much every programme, you learn something.

So we were thrilled to be invited along to the CBeebies headquarters to preview something top secret, followed by a tour around the new set of Show Me Show Me. (If you haven’t seen it, it’s very much a modern version of my old favourite, Playschool. Gibby loves Show Me Show Me, and especially one of the presenters, Pui.)

What a day we had! Grace met Cat, one of the presenters who was every inch as nice as she seems.

“I seen you on my…

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Primary School. Secondary citizen.

We got the letter. The letter telling us Gibby has a place at a school we didn’t choose. A school I will have to drive to in order for her to get there, in an already highly congested area.

To take her there every morning, I will have to drive past the primary school I wanted her to go to. The school that is less than 5 minutes walk down the road. The school where she already knows other pupils and I feel is absolutely right for her.

What . . . The. . . . F??!!

I am appealing, but have been told because of the high number of siblings and the places being full, it’s kind of tough.

I feel really sad about this. Sad that in an already hugely over populated country, the parents of only children seem like the very last priority. Sad that I was one of the few Mums I know that was actually excited about the school process – that was looking forward to taking her for the first time, knowing how much I used to enjoy it, and never doubting that she’d attend the school on our doorstep.

Now I am just frustrated and upset that my one chance at this important chapter in my only child’s life has been marred by a ridiculous system.

Michael Gove knew this was a high birth year. Provisions could have and should have been made.

I guess it’s just tough tits to the first borns.

Rant probably very much NOT over. Watch this space.

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Why Pick a Greyhound?

On the dog blog today, why to consider a greyhound if you’re thinking of expanding the family – in a canine kinda way.

http://furrbuddies.wordpress.com/2014/04/23/why-pick-a-greyhound/

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