Wednesday, April 27, 2016

The Four-Legged Family

Special dedicated '30 Days' photograph today:

Eldest cat, aka the original and grumpiest Grumpy Cat, has gone missing.

For the past few weeks, he has suffered the return of the tumour on his face. Under the watchful eye of the vet, it has been a case of either wait until surgery is possible or the inevitable goodbye has to happen.

I fear I waited too long to try for the surgery option and he's just decided enough is enough. After last year's bit of luck where the tumour moved to a position that would mean Cat didn't need his jaw broken in order to remove the lump, I just hoped luck would be on our side again.

I fear that, because I've hesitated, he has decided to go find his final resting place as some cats do. After all, he was from feral stock, rescued as a kitten with his only remaining sibling, both survivors of a magpie attack on the nest. We adopted them both. His poor sister died from a heart condition not long after the boys were born. She was small, she was delicate and her heart beat just a little too fast.

We were left with the rough and tumble brother. The one who got his kitten head wedged into a cat food tin and valiantly tried to pretend it wasn't anything to do with him. The one who would strut up to any delivery van or car visiting 'his street' for a good nosy inside.

We've gone through so much together and he's always been a constant - even if it was a constant "I told you so" from him. When Ex left the cat never looked at him again, turning his back every time Ex picked up the boys.

He was a character who bemused many neighbours, owning the street wherever we lived.

Wherever you are - please come home, say goodbye. Have one last chase of the dog, one last swipe at the other cats and one last touch of a paw on my shoulder as you sleep on the back of the couch.

Flowerpot cat

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Hello, Goodbye Spring!

For some reason, we've skipped the rest of Spring, all of Summer and Autumn and have gone straight back to Winter. It's nearly May and today we had snow, hailstones, freezing rain with a little chilly sunshine thrown into the mix.

As everyone jokes about a typical Scottish weather system while turning on the central heating again I wish for a chance of warm, toasty weather to comfort the bones. What will happen tomorrow; who knows!

Some Spring lambs, probably needing a thicker woolly coat.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Saying No

I've got to learn to do it, I'm so much better than once I was but I really have to own my right to say no to people. It's important for my health more than anything else and what little energy I have needs to go towards my little family, my ability to keep a roof over our heads and not fall into that 'single parent' stereotype.

I hate being so serious all the time.

It does feel that is my daily routine now and I'd like some fun. Can't afford it though so I'll return to being grumpy, increasingly old biddy.

Escape in a photo -

Need to channel the attitude of this..erm...eagle?

Thursday, April 21, 2016

A Break In Normal Service

In the past two days two legends of my teenage years have died. At nearly 45 I feel too young to be seeing so many familiar faces passing on this year but here we are.

First of all, that bitch cancer decided to deprive us of the wonderful comedienne and writer, Victoria Wood. In an 80s where most accents on TV were RP to the extreme here was a woman, being funny, appealing to all age groups and with an unapologetic Northern English cadence. Which, for me at least, added to the humour.

I wasn't the only one happy to sit with the parents, all of us laughing heartily at Victoria's shows. Really bitingly funny comedy, intelligently written but most of all it made everyone laugh out loud then shut up really quickly for fear of missing the next joke.

My best friend in school and I used to do a daft take on Marjorie and Joan to entertain our classmates.

And my mother and I shared a love for Acorn Antiques, especially Julie Walters as Mrs Overall.

One of my friends pointed me to this one as it is reminiscent of people we know (always in a disorganised flap!) Victoria wrote and starred in Dinnerladies -

Victoria was also a great actress so if you get the chance to watch Housewife, 49, it is well, well worth it for her performance alone.

There we are, getting over another iconic loss when only a little while ago I hear that Prince has died. Alas not one of the many Royals (now hearing Prince has died would give the media a heart flutter as they wondered if it was Charles, William, the other ones).

Again, when I was a teen Prince was very risky and daring. I remember watching and giggling along to Purple Rain with friends, for us it was racy, I've not watched it recently but I would bet it was anything but!  For a bunch of insular teens in a small Scottish town it was the closest some of us would get to porn (unless your friend's big brother accidentally left his naughty French video in the VCR!)  I digress.

Victoria Wood was 62, Prince 57, that seems ridiculously young. So unfair. Celebrity Death Year 2016 edition is bloody awful.

I bought and wore a raspberry coloured beret, which did not suit this 13-year-old, in order for people to think the song had been written about me. I fooled no one.

I tried to get the official video of Little Red Corvette but it looks like that's not so easy - I'll leave it to anyone reading this to seek out his music. Take of the lyrics what you will.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Spring Blossoms

Being a grouchy old so-and-so today so best left to mumble alone. Pretty pic for the day, Spring blossoms. I've always wanted a cherry blossom tree but thanks to Nutty Neighbour's enormous leylandii trees sucking up all the goodness from my garden I have no chance of growing one so I'll just have to appreciate them elsewhere.

At the same point, beautiful weather today gave me an excuse to enjoy some time in the garden and those blessed leylandii were full of birds. Just a pity they are so over-imposing and over-imposing into my garden.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Blame It On The Sunshine...

Blame it on the fact there aren't enough hours in the day of late.  Once again it's running to keep up and I can't run.

I didn't say the 30 days were going to run concurrently...aye. Might have gotten away with it there. So here's a pretty picture of the Highlands to make up for it all.

On the road to Braemar...

Friday, April 15, 2016

Oh, Would You Look At That

...midnight has slipped by again, pulling the bed covers with it.

Time fleeting, flighting, fernickity. So time shall be the prompt.

My sons way back when they were still known as the Hobbits, discovering Bronze Age Scottish 'things' in the land around Cairnpapple, or maybe just rabbit shits. Yeah, probably just rabbit shits or chocolate raisins as they used to call it. No I don't eat chocolate raisins any more, funny that.
Two hits on the time machine there - reminiscing of when my sons were little squishables and one of our visits to the Bronze Age site not far from home, Cairnpapple.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Trying Not To Be Philosophical Today

I'm feeling a little lost without the routine of working everything around the boys and so, my dinnertime viewing was the film Dan In Real Life. Interesting that the moment the main character steps away from devoting his entire time to his family they become a little selfish.

It's probably something I've covered before but when the boys' father left I decided to...well, devote my entire time to my family. What was left of it. Of course there were issues of trust and esteem that I don't think I'll ever work out to my satisfaction. It seemed the right choice then and it still seems the right choice now. Certainly if the way the boys have turned out is anything to go by then a pat on the back for single parenthood.

Loneliness is not a factor. There are times though...

Anyway, I'm wittering on and all I should really be doing is sending another photograph out into the ether.

It's cold and wet outside so naturally my thoughts return to warmer climates and fond memories and wishing I had a lovely, peaceful holiday to look forward to again. You never know. Relaxation, beautiful surroundings, heat in your bones and a good Joanne Harris book to enjoy - what could be better?

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Under The Bridge

Forth Bridge

There live no trolls under this bridge, well, not on the Lothian side at least. This was taken back in the day when Scotland had a ferry service to Europe, long for those days to come back. Also far enough ago that the bridge was still in it's 'forever painting' phase.

Now they have some magical paint that doesn't need continually refreshed so the bridge is scaffold free.


Again, I wish we had a ferry link to Europe, it's ridiculous we don't but that's what you get as part of this union. We get to drive to Newcastle or Hull, our only other option is the plane. We were also promised quick links to the Eurotunnel that never appeared either. Ah well. We still got to pay for it though and that's always good. ::sarcasm button deployed::

I hear it said that the ferry wasn't used, which doesn't make sense as when we tried to rebook (Rosyth - Zeebrugge) it was always full. Sure, it would need subsidised, most ferries do. Despite my fear of boats (thanks Titanic) I quite liked the over night journey. Outside cabin of course - like, I could have gotten out of that window if anything happened? You just watch me and I would have made sure my then four-year-old sons were with me!

I wonder if it has to take independence for us to be fully integrated with the rest of Europe, to have proper transport links. Naturally I want independence anyway but it's evident how much we've been held back, how many believe we don't 'deserve' to be a fully-fledged country. It's really quite a sad indictment of Scotland.

Well, this post took a dark step, you never can tell where the photographs will take you.

Saturday, April 09, 2016

In A Timely Manner

For some reason I convinced myself I had posted on Thursday and Friday. I must be going mad - at last! Maybe that will allow me some rest. The other day I needed to rest, I didn't, today I paid the price. Eyeballs like peeled onions, you get the gist.

Today's pic, taken at the local forest in Beecraigs Country Park. Mostly Forestry Commission trees (all in straight lines and at the mercy of being felled all at once, making the place look like a bomb hit it) but there are beauties like this dotted around, snubbing a branch at the Forestry's tidiness. Of course they are felled too as nature isn't as neat as they'd like but until then, here it lives.

Wednesday, April 06, 2016

There Comes A Choice

I might have a meeting I need to go to tomorrow evening but until then I will be mainly doing not much but sleeping, painting and watching TV. It sounds like the laziest of days but this is how I recharge the battery, or recharge as much as I can. Or really, just prevent a crash and who wouldn't take a day to avoid crunchy, gnawing, grinding pain.

Simple, really.

Today's photo - be the seagull.

Seagull versus statue
Calderglen Park, East Kilbride


Nothing new there then, but I have to get up early tomorrow and I'm moving dangerously close to a crash. Still, the boys are away to another camp this Friday so if I can make it to the weekend I can let it go then. I can push through the pain and the tiredness for a couple of days, it's not pleasant but what can you do?

It's been a very grey and rainy week, naturally that doesn't help. Wishing for a long, sunny summer - just once, that would be nice!

I should rename this venture, 30 Days (Plus) of Photos and a Bit of Moaning Too. Touch long for a label though.

North Berwick, East Lothian

Monday, April 04, 2016


I ended up feeling (and probably looking) like an incompetent idiot thanks to an antiquated email system which formatted a mail out I sent in such a way that it resembled something done by a toddler.
Badly wanted to stick my head in a blender after hearing about the Panama papers. Oh, here we go again and as is per usual in the UK, nothing will happen other than a bit of tutting.

Google it, you'll not get to hear much about those in the British Establishment who are involved. Of course not. My next self-employed tax return will be filled out through gritted teeth.

And calm. Go for a walk with Happy dog, and calm. (Not like this, it's raining today, of course it is. An Eeyore day if ever there was one.)

Saturday, April 02, 2016

Describe Motherhood

Two for the price of one - it is Saturday after all. Apologies on the portrait quality, photos taken at Kelvingrove Museum, Glasgow. One of the most wonderful places on Earth. I need to go back, and soon.

Friday, April 01, 2016


I Don't Mean To Judge But...

Ah, who am I kidding, I judge, I judge all the time. If people were being honest we all do and if someone says they don't then they've just passed judgement on those who freely admit to judging.

Here are two little gems I mulled over while standing in line at the local Sainsbury's -

Wine; there is a layer of pretentiousness, even in the sweetest person.

A certain brand of cider or maybe just cider full stop; you want to get drunk, as effortlessly as possible and don't mind furry tongue in the morning.

Oh-ho! I hear the holier-than-thou folk cry, and what was it you were buying?

Cat food and diet cola (own brand), because the cats need fed and my insides are heaving cauldrons of rotten (but own brand doesn't have aspartame so I pretend otherwise).