Friday, 28 February 2014

Who Do They Think You Are #4

Are you ready to judge this stranger by their appearance?



A 20 Year Old, Female thought this: Name: She looks like an Abby or Lucy. Age: About 15/16, so still in school. Location: A small-town type area. Occupation: [see age] Hobbies: Watching films, hanging out with her friends, sleepovers etc. Musical Taste: I'd have to say rock / indie / alternative etc. General Statement: Very pretty face! Even though shes not really smiling she has good defined features. Looks like a nice girl! Not plastered in too much makeup. Not in a low cut dress or anything. Not that im dissing those sorts of things but this experiment is based on judging by looks and I would say she's probably an intelligent, well rounded girl with her head screwed on. Just needs to smile a bit more

And the true facts are...: Name: Cheryl. Age: 22. Occupation: PGCE Student /JD Wetherspoon Associate. Hobbies: I play Ukulele. I love Sci-Fi and Fantasy. I draw and write LOTS. Musical Taste: I'm quite varied. From Punk to Classical. Although I'm really into folk and Acoustic stuff at the moment, especially Keaton Henson. General Statement: I never really know what to say about about myself. I'm a general nerdy oddball, I guess.And I'm cool with that.



A huge thanks to both participants for joining my little social experiment and if you would like to know what strangers think about you get in touch either via my Facebook fan page or email thesweetnesstalks@gmail.com!


Thursday, 27 February 2014

Project 52 // January

Well I'm back with silly photos from my personal life to bore you with again!

If you remember/were here, last year you will of seen that I completed a full Project 365, from January 1st 2013, over on my photography blog theSweetness:365. Each month I shared a summary post on this blog and seeing as I couldn't give the photo blog up cold turkey, you get the pleasure of seeing even more pointless photos - this time a Project 52!

I would of loved to of done another full year however with the amount of time and effort I already put into Underland to Wonderland, theSweetness:365 became overly stressful sometimes. 1 photo a week I can manage no problem and it still helps to document my life.

Here is the first month worth of photos. To read what I got up to each of those weeks, click here!









Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Review // The Most Wonderful eBay Diary


After Christmas I was browsing online for a unique Disney themed diary. There were a few dotted around the inter-webs but they were either too cartoon like or too common - I like things out of the ordinary!
Then I stumbled upon this beaut.
It was from the Sellzzang shop on eBay which is based in Korea, so you know it's gonna have some super cute stuff! I'm usually rather skeptical about buying on eBay, I don't know why, but Jake got it for me as a late Christmas gift as it was just too perfect for me to pass up.
Ordered on 3rd of January it took until 18th to get here (that was a Saturday and I was at work so had to wait until the 20th to go pick it up from the Post office booo) which is an okay shipping time when you think how far it is travelling to get to you.



Once converted to pounds it cost me £12.51 with free shipping. I thought that it was a little expensive for a diary alone but when you look in the likes of WH Smith and Paperchase I guess that seems to be about the going rate so I'm happy with that, again considering the over seas shipping.
I'ts well worth it anyway. The little book is crammed with lots of useful pages and surprises. It is undated and therefor can be used any year or starting on any month and I will most defiantly be purchasing another, although a different style, for next year. 
The beginning has monthly overviews, just like a calender, then following is the weekly planner with a 'Monthly Cash Accounts' (super awesome if you run a home and like to keep track of your bills etc) page at the start of each month. Mixed in the middle of the book are lovely little snippets from the original story, original artwork and space for your notes or doodles as well as a very helpful and useful  Daily Record section. There are a few little list and personal pages at the back too. 



Did I mention it comes with stickers?! haha Not only does it come with month tab stickers for you to label the sections as you use them, it also comes with all these super traditional, beautiful, Alice in Wonderland style postage stamp stickers.
I love it all. The quality and style of the diary itself is more than what I was looking for and the seller I bought from was fab. It was even wrapped up neatly in bubble wrap inside the envelope to keep it all safe.

Some of you are probably thinking, ' Why are you telling us about a diary in February?!' and the truth is I forgot all about these photo's I'd taken until Leona commented on my Life Lately post asking about it. After a little twitter banter shes snapped one up for herself so I though if she liked it...maybe you will too.

Monday, 24 February 2014

Finishing Touches Wishlist // Living Room*

It's now reached the 3 month mark of our moving into the new place and things are still coming together.
My kitchen is complete, apart from tiny nic-nak type of thingy'm'bobs that I'd like to add eventually and the bathroom is fine too. Our 'study' is of course Bunny's bedroom and the spare room, Bakers so that's another two rooms I don't really need to touch.
Our bedroom is on the back burner, last priority as noone needs to see it and it needs alot to make it presentable (a bed for our mattress to go for a start haha) but we're in no rush to do that just now. So that leaves the living room of which I've complied a tiny wish list of 'finishing touch' pieces I'd like to tick that room off the to-do list.


All of my furniture and accessories in our sitting room are old fashioned, or so people say. Both my TV unit and prized cabinet were sourced from the British Heart Foundation shop and are both beautiful, sturdy and old. They don't seem to make the style I like anymore so I have to hunt to find awesome stuff.  Alot on the above mood board are examples similar to what I'm after because of that fact.


Victorian Library Chair  at £300 it's just a smidgen over our budget...ha! But this is the style I like. I've also been looking at chesterfield arm chairs but I think with our one two seater sofa a more delicate, wooden seat would suit the space better.

Toile Print Cushion When working my first ever job, as an interior design consultant, I fell in love with Toile de Jouy. I remember one woman in particular who papered practically her whole house in Lewis and Wood toile - jealous! This one in particular is especially lovely because of the pretty bird on in!

Herringbone Tweed Cushion We already have a lovely woolen tartan thrown to make the sofa more snuggley but it really lacks in cushions. I like plain, traditional things that are practical to use (easing my sore back) so this is lovely. Maybe I'll whip the sewing machine out and make my own as this is a little pricey too!

Tiffany Style Roman Hanging Lamp Lamp shades are my worst shopping nightmare. The first house we lived in was fully furnished and had awful square paper lantern type shades and this house and the previous one had none so I left it that way. However a bulb just hanging isn't the classiest sight and so this shade is the most fitting I could find.

Round Lamp Table I love this! It's the perfect size and shape to sit at the end of our sofa for Jake to rest his mug of tea and Xbox controller haha. The only thing is that it isn't the same colour as the rest of our wood...

Mounted Red Deer Antlers Okay, so not everyones cup of tea and probably a controversial point when I am against animal cruelty etc. However, the site these come from is a reputable company, passionate about natural history and protecting our planet by supporting the WWF. Most of these pieces come from old, diseased, road killed or accidental death animals and personally I think they are beautiful. 


'We're All Mad Here' Cushion What would any room in my house be without a little Disney hint. I suppose my living room has more than a hint already with it taking over my mantle and my display cabinet but this is so subtle and I did mention I need lots more cushions! (Psst there are alot more designs and quotes to choose from or personalize, check them out!)

Personalized Canvas Here is another thing I plan to DIY. My Mam got a lovely present from a colleague as part of the 'Secret Santa' game this past Christmas. It was a framed 'heart' made up of words all about her. I want to create something similar although more in the style of this canvas shown.

Ornate Mirror Oh now this is something that will bug me forever. I missed out on the chance of the most beautiful mirror, almost identical to this, for less than £60.00 in T K Maxx a few months ago. I wish we had had the money to of just bought it then and there because I didn't even want to leave the shop without it but alas, poor girl problems! When I went back with my parents after Christmas to show them the style I was after it was gone. Inevitable but gutting all the same.
Anyways, this one is very pretty and would tie in with the colour of our fireplace nicely...again a hefty price tag though.



I think with these items my room would finally be complete and make this even more the place we'll call home for a while now. 
It's been quite a while since I went internet window shopping for one of these posts and I've enjoyed it, so maybe I'll do another for the bedroom soon... Keep an eye out!






Sunday, 23 February 2014

Weekly Wondering // Week 21

I found this set of questions, '365 thought provoking questions to ask yourself this year', last year and bookmarked the webpage. After having rediscovered it I am answering 7 of the questions each week  until I complete the year. 



140. What makes a person beautiful?
Someone who can show care and compassion towards other living beings. Who has great humor and honesty.

141. Is there ever a time when giving up makes sense?
Yes. When keeping going is causing more hurt that good. If you keep trying and trying and things get worse, you need to give up and try something else. 

142. What makes you proud?
When my animals do anything really haha. All of the commands/tricks that Baker knows and how clever Bunny and he are for their age and species really astounds me everyday. Such a proud parent!

143. How do you find the strength to do what you know in your heart is right?
Because I know it's right. Isn't it that simple? Personally it takes more strength to do what is wrong and/or lie because 1. I'm awful at it and 2. It makes me feel like poo! I can't be the only one?!

144. Where do you find peace?
When out for a walk I guess or in the bath! I get less peace now having my three monkeys to keep me busy but I much prefer it that way anyway. :)



145. When have you worked hard and loved every minute of it?
I always work hard! But a time I've worked extremely hard but really, really, enjoyed it was when I worked as a photographer at a holiday camp. During the day I took family portraits in the studio as well as selling prints from the previous night and then at night I was in the bar doing the rounds taking group shots and character photos. You know, like kids with Bradley Bear and stuff? It was fast paced and I did alot of hours but it was alot of fun and interaction with lots of different people.

146. How short would your life have to be before you would start living differently today?
Very short I think. I would change my life now if I could but like I say as an answer to alot of these questions money is the problem!! 




Friday, 21 February 2014

Life Lately // February 2014


Doing
Using my new diary to help me fit more into my days. I'm a hardworking person but can get lazy when there's nothing driving me to do the things that need done.  So I write a to do list and feel accomplished when I can check everything off.  
I've been getting the housework done sooner, spending more time with the animals and friends and putting free time to good use including trying to organize a sponsored dog walk in aid of the Guide Dogs Association. 


Thinking
How far away October is!!!!!!! I don't know how I'm going to cope waiting all the way until the day after my 24th birthday to go to Disneyland. Plus, as much as I'm gonna miss my 3 men at home it's gonna be very cool to have 5 days to just spend with my Mam. 
There is so much to plan! (and so many corresponding blog posts to write!) 

Loving
NETFLIX! We've used it before, but never really made the most of it. As I'm typing this I've watched 6 films and 5 episodes of a TV series in 2 and a half days.... 
[edit - we've now watched 3 series of Breaking Bad and 20 movies]

Hating
'Nek Nominations' . Full stop.  (Although they have finally dried up)

Even if you don't me I'm sure most of you will know my views on alcohol on a whole anyways but this idiotic 'game' that is taking over my Facebook news feed is downright depressing.  It's not just the fact that I don't drink but to think that people judge a person depending on how well you can swallow some disgusting substance in one go is a complete picture of what is wrong with the people of this country. 
The drinking and partying lifestyle and scene takes up a larger percentage of peoples lives than ever should be necessary with people 'living for the weekend'...now binge drinking has been taken to the next level.
People have died for goodness sake. Why not judge someone on how much they do for others? Or how much they can make you laugh? Anything but this rubbish. 


Other stuff
- I now live with a 26 year old! How mad is it that my other half is sooo oldd haha. Mind you, next year I'll be turning a quarter of a century...oh goodness.
- I can't wait for the24th of this month! Jake and I have both taken the week off from work and have lots of stuff planned to spend some quality time together. They'll make for a few pretty cool blog posts too I should think :D
- Still on the hunt for a 'Blog BFF', as cheesy as it sounds, I've found lots of really cool little blogs along the way this month. I'm trying to make a proper effort to comment more and interact which I find hard but hopefully it's going down okay and I don't seem like a weirdo... 
- On the subject of bloggers, I have gained a few new followers lately and would just like to thank you for being here :D
- Just a reminder to those who own dogs - PICK.UP.YOUR.POO. Thanks :)


Wednesday, 19 February 2014

YouTube Videos You Need To See #5

The title says it all really. (Although, yes, true, one is not a 'YouTube' video) Here's my monthly list of videos I have enjoyed and wanted to share. I'll let them do the talking.


A trip down memory lane for all my fellow 23+ year olds! 



This guys awesome birthday surprise for his partner, prompted his high school bully to offer a heart felt apology over facebook. 



If only everyone had this attitude towards their dogs. <3


Here's something doing the rounds on the social networks recently and I was hesitant to watch it originally. I urge you to though. 



Not to go overboard with the 'Gay rights' shizz, and to be honest I don't care whether someone is gay or not. But this here, as a general speech, is amazing. 




Monday, 17 February 2014

Cruelty Free Cleaning Products

It's now been around 4 years since I consciously started to ban all items that had caused any animal a life of hell in a laboratory  from my shopping list.
As the (brilliant) trend of people becoming cruelty free becomes more popular by the day I thought that this would be a worthwhile post to write as many people I have spoken to are actively seeking to buy make up and cosmetics that aren't tested on animals but lack the thought about what their household hygiene routine includes - so here are my affordable, everyday cleaning items to give some inspiration.


There are lists upon lists online of  'cruelty free' brands, however the majority from my list are not listed and extra delving is needed. I research a brands name before purchasing and go though their websites as well as well know forums and non testing websites. I will leave corresponding links below.




Easy - The Easy brand is from well know Producer Jeyes. It displays a 'not tested on animals' logo on its products is listed here and here as being clean.
Astonish - Has popular items in its line such as the oven cleaner but other products in the line are less accessible, I bought mine from eBay. Their website confirms they are vegan and they are listed on the Go Cruelty Free website.
Dr Oetker - is a baking ingredient company and is suitable for vegetarians.
Asda - Along with a big percentage of top supermarkets Asda do not test or commission tests on any of their own brand products. See here and here.
Tesco - As above. See here and here.

For floor and glass cleaning I use a steam cleaner and my water has only been tested on my own animals after coming from the tap and being put through a water purifier! haha
Overall you'll see that all of that costs me less than £15.00 whereas the top name brand items, at the same size/ content (including those in place of what I use my steamer for) comes to over double that!


The reason I choose to use the above brands rather than popular clean brands such as Bio-D and Ecover is simply because I am not made of money and they are harder to get your hands on!
I hope you found this somewhat helpful and even convinced people who use the likes of Johnson & Johnson, Proctor and Gamble etc that picking up Asdas own brand of washing powder not only saves you money, but doesn't hurt bunnies (and it works just as well before you argue otherwise! :P)

No excuses! Buy cruelty free okay?!



Sunday, 16 February 2014

Weekly Wondering // Week 20

First up, a very Happy 26th Birthday to my love, Jake, today. I don't think he reads my blog very often anymore but I thought it best to acknowledge the fact officially that he's old. <3


I found this set of questions, '365 thought provoking questions to ask yourself this year', last year and bookmarked the webpage. After having rediscovered it I am answering 7 of the questions each week  until I complete the year. 


133. When you think of ‘home,’ what, specifically, do you think of?
My own bed,  comfort, warmth and four bowls. <3



134. What’s the difference between settling for things and accepting the way things are?
I think that settling is pretty much giving up. It's choosing not work towards anything better whereas accepting is to recognize things are the way they are.

135. How many of your friends would you trust with your life?
To be 100% honest, none of them. I have less friends than can be counted on one hand, some of which I haven't known long at all. Overall I don't have a best friend or a close friend and so wouldn't expect anyone to class my friendship high enough to feel inclined to do any life saving.

136. What’s your definition of heaven?
See question 128.

137. What is your most prized possession?
Other than my three men...I'm gonna cheat by saying my memory boxes. Technically they obviously contain more that one 'possession' but if there were a fire it's what I'd grab. I have some lovely things, but I really am not too overly attached too many material items - it's the memories I hold dear. 

138. How would you describe yourself in one sentence?
I am a kind hearted, animal loving, Disney obsessed, 70 year old in a 23 year olds body. 
(Are all those commas allowed? haha)

139. What stands between you and happiness?
Uhhh I hate these these questions because they make the materialistic me come out. Surely everyone will agree thought when I say that standing between happiness and myself is money!
Now I know money can't buy happiness - I have all I need in Jake and the pets, but money would give us a nice, safe, peaceful place to live which is the only thing I long for. 



Friday, 14 February 2014

The Get to Know Me a Little Tag

Thank you to Leona for tagging me! I love doing these as well as reading as it gives you an insight on the blogger, sometimes a little more personally than their usual posts. I tag who ever wants to do it, BUT on one condition...that you link your post below in the comments so I can check it out :P


1. Do you have a middle name?
Uhh. Yes. And I dislike telling people as those who find out via passport/licences etc always go on as if it's some mad, foreign name or something. It's Rhonda and it means 'good spear' of Welsh origin apparently. (One of the most awesome female MMA fighters goes by the same name so I'll take that!)

2. What was your favourite subject in school?
No idea. I can't remember that far back! In 6th form it was Photography obviously. 

3. What's your favourite drink?
Juice. Just blackcurrant juice. I don't drink that many different drinks and it's what I live off on a day to day basis. Although! I was extremely partial to a still Fanta from McDonalds until the beggars done away with it! Pft.

4.What's your favourite song at the moment?
My teenage self would hate this, but I rarely listen to music anymore. Especially anything new! I'll choose this.


5.What would you name your children?
The baby girl names I've liked in the past have all been used by family and friends already, including Ava and Evie, so I'm hesitant on sharing encase people 'steal' my ideas! However as it's highly unlikely that I will be able to stomach having a sprog within the next ten years so I suppose I may as well say! 
For a girl, I like Tia, Eden, Skyler and Willow and for a boy JJ (Jake Junior) obviously if it were Jake I had kids with or Elias, Lincoln and Brandon. 


6. Do you participate in any sports?
Not anymore! I did do Judo and Jiu Jitsu for a while, other than that I only like to walk and do the occasional aerobic dance work outs or yoga.


7. What's your favourite book?
Oh, this is a hard one. NOT. HARRY POTTER DUHHH.


8. What's your favourite colour?
Green. and brown. and pink...


9. What's your favourite animal?
All of them!!!!!


10. What's your favourite perfume?
Ed Hardy.


11. What's your favourite time of the year?
Summer. I'm such a cold person and even wore a cardigan and boots in the middle of the day, one year in Ibiza and so obviously love to be warm! I love the lighter nights meaning there is more time in the day to get things done and the nice weather to do those things. It makes dog walks and walks in general that little bit more enjoyable too. 


Ollld photo pre-tattoo's! (6/7 year ago?)

12. Have you been out of the country?
Yeah but not far. I have only visited Spain, France, Italy and Greece thus far. Including some of the off coast islands like the Balearics and thCanarys. 


13. Do you speak any other languages?
Ha. No. I wish I could be fluent in another language but alas I am old and it's harder to learn now. If I had a child I would try to teach them from an early age. I did do French and German in school so know the odd stuff and taught myself some Spainish when I was a young teen to use whilst on holiday but that's about it. 


14. Do you have any siblings?
Only child in daa house!


15. What's your favourite shop?
None really to be honest. I'm not a big shopper and never buy new clothes. Oh, actually I'll say the Disney shop as it's the only one I go into religiously when there is one around (and online).

16. What's your favourite food?
Plain pasta with cheese, and broccoli. Either together or separate - I'm not fussed.


17. What's your favourite movie?
Most Walt Disney Products with the only acception being Harry Potter. We have a huge DVD collection though and are just general movie fans in our house especially those with Adam Sandler, Will Ferrell, Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn and the like. 

18. What are some of your favourite TV shows?
We don't watch TV alot but series I love are:
LOST (best.show.ever)
The Walking Dead
Flash Foward
Prison Break 
Sabrina the Teenage Witch 
and of course all my other Disney channel and Nickelodeon teen stuff that I watch on a weekly basis. 

19. What phone do you have?
A Samsung of some sort. I'm not entirely sure as to me as long as it calls and texts I'm not bothered!  


 20. How tall are you?
Just little. 5''4 ish? I don't really measure myself. 


21. Any pets?
You'll only not know this if you have never been here before and so I'll introduce you to my pets children, Baker and Bunny.  << Click it. Go on. Look at the cuteness!

22. Any kids?
LOL 


23. If you weren't you, would you be your friend?
I think so. I'm a good friend, giving, helpful and caring. Although, maybe a little boring to be around seeing as I'm such a socially shy-away nerd.

I dunno ask my handful of real life friends...

24. What's the first thing you notice about someone?
I think it's their clothing as superficial as that sounds but I don't mean it in a degrading way, no, pretty much the opposite. For example, I prefer careless, down to earth and dressed for practicality and comfort whereas many girls my age are obsessed with the latest trends and looking their best at all times with heels and a full face of make up to walk the dog...I don't usually have much in common with the latter (exceptions may occur). I could never go for a guy in skinnys and a cardigan either...


25. What is your eye colour?
Green.


 26. Scary movies or happy endings?
Both. If the happy ending is of a romantic/ lovey dovey I'll have the scary movie instead though please. 

27. Favourite smells?
Vanilla, citrus and other scents from my candle wax tarts alongside a clean house.


28. Do you have any special talents?
None whatsoever.


29. Where were you born?
Wansbeck hospital, Ashington, Northumberland. 


30. What are your hobbies?
Being an animal Mammy, nature and bird watching/photography, being a Disney obsessor and of course blogging. 



Wednesday, 12 February 2014

RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch 2014


This January I registered to take part in the nationwide wildlife survey to track the numbers of particular species in your local area. The RSPB (The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds) hold this annual count and this year I saw it advertised and knew that giving an hour of my time to help was nothing! 
It's only been a year and a half or so that I have been really into bird watching and I'm still working on recognizing species but the pack I was sent in the mail, along with my long lens to get a close up look at the birds, was an excellent help. 




What didn't help however was the weather. It was peeing down! Usually the trees out back of ours are full of all different birds (see top photo) and just the day that I have to count them they were all keeping under the cover of better sheltered bushes and trees by the looks of things with a poor turn out.
That with the fact of not wanting to disturb the birds that did turn up, meant photographing through the window and so producing shoddy photos unlike my usual bird captures.


When I registered I was sent a pack through the mail to track my recordings, a little booklet to help identify species and a voucher for £5.00 off at the RSPB online shop! So even non-birding types have no reason not to try and get involved next year ;)

Obviously I have forwarded my findings onto the RSPB but I also thought it may be cool to list here and compare with anyone else who took part.
You could even just have a look in your garden now and see if your area attracts the same birds as mine or not - I think that could be pretty interesting to know :) Visit their website which also has a bird identifier that I find amazingly useful!


So my tally was as follows.
During the 1 hour time period I saw (in total, not all at once as the survey was):
Sparrows - 7
Blackbirds - 1
Chaffinches - 3
Blue Tits - 8
Great Tits - 3
Dunnoks - 2
Gold Finches - 13
Collared Doves - 2

Alot less than is usually in our back garden! Did you take part? If not why?!! I hope you'll consider taking part next year.


Monday, 10 February 2014

Why I Don't Fit In As A Blogger.

[READ MY DISCLAIMER BEFORE LEAVING COMMENTS]

I've never fit in.
Since high school, into the world of work and now even online. 
Here is a list of things or reasons that make me a blogger outcast.

(Edit - This post is in no way me complaining about the fact. I like not fitting in most of the time, although certain days I feel down like anyone else. Apologies for posting a negative, un inspiring post. I hope you understand I just like to let the truth out :) )

I have never been and will never go to a meet up.
In general I don't like meeting up with people anyway - let alone lots of strangers!  I strongly dislike large groups and feel awkward having to try and impress (in a way) anyone. I'd much rather stay at home, in my jogging bottoms, behind my computer screen.
That being said I really would love to have a friend or two who I could share my blogging talks with or even meet up, share interests or collaborate with...I think some of my real life friends don't really get my passion towards this little corner of the internet haha.

I prefer my own company...:/

I don't understand the concept of 'blog hops' and giveaways for the purpose of gaining followers.
I think that a following should come from people genuine enjoying your writing and through word of mouth rather than people only following because they have to. In the past I've had alot of people follow and then a few days later unfollow when I haven't returned the gesture, that's really uncool and so awkwardly in your face I don't know how they can so shamelessly seek popularity.


I don't like tea!
Nope. Or coffee. I feel like I'm the only one who doesn't have the customary statement in my 'about me' about how much I like either of the hot drinks oh, and cats. (Nor do I use the word penchant! )


I am actually a photographer.
A vast percentage of blogs I have read, in the list including tea and cats, the word 'photographer' is present. Now if you don't or have never earned money or had work published you aren't reallly a photographer. You may be interested and really good at photography but if that was the case 63% (I don't know, it's the first number that came to my head) of the world would be photographers.
I know this will make me super unpopular (wow, that'll make a change...not!) and I have been argued with before for stating so but owning a DSLR means nothing. You do not need a fancy DSLR just for blog photos.

I am/used to be a portrait and wedding photographer. I have photographed children, families, animals, events and wedding days, both for myself and under another studios name. I still do take on work occasionally but don't actively seek jobs after the death of my car causing getting around a problem at present.



I have no real blogger friends.
Enough said. That's that. Although when trying to join in I usually end up worse off than I started...


Pastel colours, floral patterns and 'vintage'ness are unappealing to me.
Every other blog I visit fits a theme, or the blogger stereotype for design I think.  I feel that my blog is rather different to the standard and there is another point in which I don't fit in.
People fill their rooms with white on white everything and I fill mine with real antique dark wood and rich coloured fabrics. Is white really practical afterall?


Lastly, I don't like Make Up or Fashion.
Well it's not so much that I don't like make up as I take a big interest in the brands (cruelty free if course) and ways in which I wear my make up. However I just feel that how I choose to make my face look better or the products I like, isn't really interesting enough to merit a blog dedicated to it. There are so many others out there after all. As for fashion you know my wardrobe is full of Disney shirts and jogging bottoms.

I know there are many blogs that don't include such posts, but I just wish there were more and that they were more recognized than they are. It's seems as though alot of 'Lifestyle' blogs are now incorporating more and more fashion and beauty, leaving us boring old true lifestyle blogs a minority.



So yeah, there it is. Why I don't belong in this whole blogosphere! It's probably rather all over the place because right now it's 1.08am and I'm busy flicking between YouTube videos and writing. That plus the fact that I'm tired and I don't really want to go back through and proof read this ever means that I look like an illiterate, repetitive fool - probably. Oh well! :) 



Sunday, 9 February 2014

Weekly Wondering // Week 19

I found this set of questions, '365 thought provoking questions to ask yourself this year', last year and bookmarked the webpage. After having rediscovered it I am answering 7 of the questions each week  until I complete the year. 


[This is where I wanna live! Photo credit - Anna Theodora Photography]


126. What makes everyone smile?
I would of used to answered this with baby animals. However, I have actually encountered people who are so angry with life that they can't even crack a smile to a cute little puppy looking up at them. Urgh!

127. What do you owe yourself?
To make sure I always look after myself and never settle for being treated like I used to be.

128. What would your ‘priceless’ Mastercard-style commercial be?
I don't know about the whole advert but my priceless moment would be silence. I hate noise, noisy  children, noisy neighbours etc and to have a nice quite house in the middle of nowhere would be completely and utterly priceless to me!

129. Can you think of a time when impossible became possible?
Never? Because if it was possible, it was never really impossible to start with. 

130. Why do you matter?
Technically everyone matters, although I beg to differ with undesirables and drug takers etc. As for me I matter to my parents because I have to haha and I matter to my pets because they depend on me for them to live. 
But really I, like every breathing being, matter because my choices and actions have a roll on effect. Consequences effect others and in turn, they effect others and so on. 


131. How have you changed in the last five years?
I've gained in confidence, I'm happier and have more respect for myself in terms of not settling for being made to feel miserable.  I've become a mother to a doggy. Urm..I don't know what else. 

132. What are you sure of in your life?
I'm sure that my animals are my children and that Jake is the best thing to of happened to me . Also that I have a low tolerance for people, especially neighbours. 





[Oooh, ps! As of Monday the 10th (tomorrow) I will now be posting on a Monday as well as the usual Wednesday, Friday and Sunday! Yey!]


Friday, 7 February 2014

How To Properly Care For A Domestic Rabbit

In my 23 years of life I have owned 4 rabbits, a guinea pig and 8 Syrian hamsters, meaning learning alot along the way. So much so infact that I feel alot of the information is worth while passing on especially when I have very sadly lost pets due to not being completely prepared as an owner. 

I have known a few people who have looked into getting rabbits in particular and I have been asked advice, so here it is all in one place with links to other knowledgeable sites and such I have found as well as lots more.
Lets get started.


Diet

Just like humans (and most other living creatures) a rabbits food intake is important. Too much and the wrong things cause them to become overweight and that is a very bad thing for a little creature. Sadly, when I was a small child my first rabbit became so overweight that she was unable to properly clean herself and had to be put to sleep at a young age.
Not only the amount but the type of foods your rabbit eat is extremely important too. They are the animal version of a vegan and with sensitive little tummys, only able to handle plant based foods.
Did you know that 80% of their diet should consist of hay?! I didn't until a couple years ago when researching why my Bunny wasn't feeling too good.
Other than that they need a good supply of fresh vegetables but there are certain ones they should stay away from or eat in moderation - for example it is widely known that rabbits eat carrots, however they should only ever actually get them as a rare treat as they are high in sugar!
Also, the dry, bagged rabbit food that you buy from the pet shop is not necessary part of their diet at all and the muesli with grains in should really be avoided. If they are fed these it should only add up to about 4.5% of their overall food intake.
Always provide fresh, clean drinking water. Some may prefer a bottle but my little guy drinks from a bowl like a dog!


Exercise

Unfortunately this point is over looked by many people and poor little rabbits that are bought as pets for children are kept locked in hutches and cages for a large percentage of their lives, usually after the novelty has worn off. Whether your rabbit is an indoor or outdoor pet they still need to be getting out and about for a run for a minimum of 3 hours a day!!
I am very lucky to have a spare bedroom and a 'study' which have turned into Baker and Bunny's bedrooms, meaning Bunny is never in a cage. He is out in his room 24/7 and has run of the house in the afternoon when Baker is napping and again once Baker has gone to bed.
BUT, if your rabbit happens to be an outdoor rabbit you need to make sure they have access to a 'run' that gives them room to run and jump (as rabbits love to dart about) whilst still being covered over protecting them from other predators. Shady and Snowdrop, the rabbits I had as a child used to love nothing better than exploring our back garden, climbing into rockerys and nibbling my Mam's plants. If this is the case you must always ensure there are no gaps in the fence, or escape routes and defiantly supervise them. 



Living Space

I am a big believer that rabbits should not be kept in hutches. Full stop. And this page of the rabbit welfare site proves exactly why 'A Hutch is Not Enough'.  Though obviously hutches are the common housing option, alongside cages, many of which are actually too small. The rabbits living quarters is advised to be at least 6 times the length of your little guy while outstretched or with a run attached to give constant access to a larger area.
In the wild the buns will apparently cover up to the distance of 30 football pitches, have strong limbs and fiesty attitudes so this is why it is necessary for their physical and mental health to have room to move around.
Within the living space they need a separate 'potty' area or plastic litter tray, enough space for sleeping quarters to be separate from this and their food and water, as well as bordom breaking toys to keep them entertained. I also switch up the contents and layout of Bunny's room every week to make sure he doesn't get too bored!
It needs to be cleaned often. A damp, dirty space can lead to things such as 'Hock Sores' on the rabbits feet this eventually leads much worse issues, as well as other health problems.


Time and Money

Like taking on any animal they are a cost to add to your household outgoings. With hay and straw for food and bedding, fresh vegetables, toys, cleaning materials, vet trips (not only when they are ill but to neuter and vaccinate them!), the pounds add up making them just as expensive as a dog to own - don't just think it's just the initial outlay with a couple of quid for rabbit muesli now and again.
Take all that and double it. See rabbits are sociable animals and live in pairs or groups so it's best to have two for company. Your company is essential as well and this is where time comes in. They need quality time with you, regularly and often to form a friendship, trust and feeling of safety when being handled.




Other

Other important points to acknowledge are:

Have both male and female rabbits neutered.  
Here's why:
- It prevents unwanted baby bunnies. They may be cute but with thousands and thousands of rabbits already living in rescue centres we don't need to add to the growing number.
- It stops aggression and fighting between both sexes and towards you. 
- Bucks (boys) won't spray all over your house!
- It's easier to litter train them.
- If not done, female rabbits are at a high (80%) risk of developing cancer cutting their lives short.

Some plants and vegetables are not suitable for your rabbit.
Check this website with foods to avoid!

They need special attention taken towards their teeth and nails. 
With a proper diet their teeth shouldn't become much of a problem as hay helps to keep them in shape. Their nails on the other hand will need clipped, which you can do at home with proper clippers. I have them...but Bunny isn't a fan, so I would rather pay the £8.00 every 3 months or so meaning he hates the vet and not me! 

You don't need to bathe your rabbit!!
Infact they are really clean creatures and if you watch them for longer than 5 minutes they are likely to have a little groom in front of you. Most do not like to get wet and it can be very stressful for them. Their skin is delicate and they are sensitive to heat, so when they are wet they may even develop hypothermia.

Rabbit proof your home.
If, like Bunny, they are going to have access to the house do the rabbit equivalent of baby proofing. They are nibblers and need wires to be hidden to prevent temptation haha. 



Another helpful website can be found here!
And on behalf of poorly looked after bunnies everywhere, please sign this petition.

Overall I urge anyone that is adopting or buying any animal whatsoever to put alot of time in and fully research every aspect of your chosen pet before bringing them home! It will give them the healthiest and happiest life as well as bring you the most enjoyment out of an appreciative new best friend! Thank you for reading - I hope you found some of this useful!