Blog Archives

Wake up.

End of September mornings are tough. Even alarm cat has slunk off to snooze somewhere.


Pokemon battles. The great leveller.



Heavy basket of washing. I’m taking you all with me if I go.


Autumn starlings.

The swifts and swallows have gone. Only to be replaced by the chatterings of gathered starlings weighing down the telegraph wires.



You know you are not allowed upstairs Bonnie.

This is a grey area the stairs isn’t it?

Does one head count as being upstairs or on the stairs? My dog has out-thought me.




This is Millie’s expression on finding out that I may have bought her a “pink” scientific calculator.
I didn’t obviously but was it a bit cruel of me to let her entertain the thought for a while?

Seriously though, if you’re going to make calculators, at least start with a T.A.R.D.I.S. design not a pink  one, although they may need to figure out how to make fluffy ones for Evie…


Story time.

Gruff reads one and then I get a turn…eventually…


Square eyes.

I think I need a fog-horn to get through that tv induced daze…



Wrapping your own exercise books for school.

It’s that time of year when Millie brings home her exercise books to be covered for the year.

I’ll leave you with Millie on this one…



Smashing conkers.

There is a particular way of getting into a conker. Leg up, heel aimed at the spikey little sphere and smash down with full force revealing your shiny prize inside.


Skater boy.

Gruff has bought a new skateboard with his pocket money. It has shiny yellow wheels and a very cool design on the back.

It’s a tricky thing to master but he’s putting in the practice.

skater boy

Give the dog a bone.

A nice big bit of antler. Bit of skill there jamming into your mouth sideways like that Bonnie.

give the dog a bone

Tee off.

So good to have understanding neighbours, especially when your son decides to invent a new form of golf (involving a jedi sword and a giant inflatable ball….)

tee off


Happy dog.


Catching and throwing a ball, or any of his nine strong collection.


Wishful thinking.

No this isn’t like the Death Star Bonnie, it is not fully operation once it has been chewed and bitten. It will not bounce again and no amount of barking is going to put it back together…

broken ball


The moment when you realise your teenage daughter is perfectly capable of watching television and being on her phone all at the same time.

i was watching that



Moulting happy.

Arnie’s purring is causing great swathes of hair to reverberate off his body. It’s quite mesmerizing…

moulting again


Dog breath.

your breathe stinks

Caught in the act.

are you having a pillow fight

Big Hair.

The more you brush it, the bigger it gets…
big hair

Hit the decks.

If you can put the deck chair up yourself you can sit in it….well that one backfired didn’t it?


Return of the den.

It’s summer holidays and the den is bigger than ever.

return of the den

Bonnie’s new bed.

Nicely scrunched up for her to curl up in.

new bed

Pack your bags.

We are going camping. Gruff has packed all his teddies and toys into his minion rucksack but he has a dilemma.

We are not going just yet.

Does he,

a) Unpack all of said teddies and toys so he can sleep with them.


b) Sleep with the entire rucksack?

Answers on a postcard.

pack your bags

Sandwich thief.

Arnie’s quite partial to a ham sandwich. Just eat them before he does.

sandwich thief

Can we go home yet?

Another successful beach picnic nailed there by the Stevens’ family…
can we go home yet

The boy at the end of the hosepipe.


Best. Feeling. Ever.

No school until September.

best feeling ever

Flutterby butterfly.

Two weeks ago I harvested the last of our brocolli from our garden. It was riddled with green caterpillars. Evie had collected a fair few of them and put them in a mesh cage, (with the hope that they would pupate into butterflies).

This didn’t exactly go to plan. Most of the caged caterpillars were infected by a parasitic wasp and the resulting emergence of its larva wouldn’t be out of place in a Ridley Scott film.

One was left and had started to pupate in the cage but we noticed that there was another one attached to the window in our kitchen where an escapee caterpillar had chanced its luck.

We went away this weekend and came back this afternoon to the sight a newly formed cabbage (muncher) white butterfly emeging out of its chrysalis.

There never was a happier girl.



Evie has taken on the task of letting the hens out in the morning.

Today I noticed that the keys to the hen pen were missing. After scouring the house I gave up and decided to collect the eggs…

…and found a lovely warm set of keys under one of our hens.


Really, really large mice…

…or a biscuit thief?

biscuit thief

Hero’s return.

Evie has been on her Brownie pack holiday this weekend and has been sorely missed by everyone. (Especially Gruff).

heros return

Walk in the rain.

I love to walk in the rain, my dog does not. Two dripping wet, soggy creatures.

No children with me, all in school, all busy. Just me and the hound.

I remember the struggles with a pram. Wellies and raincoats, puddles and wet socks.


walk in the rain


Sunscreen fail.

I missed a bit…

sunscreen fail

A mallow moment.

Roasted over a fire and eaten with both hands. Can you get any stickier than this?


No pressure.

One wants to boot his football, the other wants to chase it and wee on trees.

No pressure Mum, none at all, in your own time.

We’re waiting…

can we go to the park

All dogs go to Iceland.

No pun intended on tonight’s England versus Iceland football game I promise.

Bonnie decided to slip out the front door tonight and cross a thirty mile per hour road. She ended up in the car park of our local Iceland supermarket.

Meanwhile her two frantic owners were galloping around the area asking every random person, child, animal, had they seen a large black dog with huge ears and a love of food.

The trail got warmer and warmer until the last group of people simply motioned to the car park excitedly and there she was, nose twitching, anticipating free food, just ourside the shop.

Shame it only sells frozen eh Bonnie?

dogs go to iceland

The last of the puddings.

You know that last bit of pudding? That last bit of strawberry pavlova sitting there on the table?
The one piece that everyone is looking at but is far too polite to ask for. The one that makes everyone pull a face like Christmas is over…

Well tough because whilst we were all yearning, Evie has just leaned over and scoffed it.

last pudding

After the swimming lesson.


A room with a cat.

room with a cat

Bath time.

Still there at every bath time waiting to swipe the bubbles.

cat bubble

Shock horror.

Millie’s response to the “Woman in Black” film.

shock horror


I’m off out drawing again to Pontardawe Arts Centre this morning looking for more willing subjects.

I’ve left Arnie in charge.


Arts in the Tawe Valley.

I’m going to be doing more drawing over the next week at the Pontardawe Arts Centre. If you fancy becoming a drawing in my sketchbook why not come down?
I’ll be there from 10-2 Monday the 13th to Friday the 17th of June.

I’ll be tweeting more drawings over the course of the week as and when!


Water slide.

water slide

Hedge versus me.

Managed to finally cut the hedge tonight. Got most of the hedge’s wild-life in my hair and in other various parts of my clothing, (I’ve just pulled a spider out of my hair two hours later).


me versus hedge

Waiting for thunder.

It’s a very muggy evening here in Swansea tonight with heavy downpours and a few good rumbles of thunder.

Nothing better than counting between the flashes of lightning waitng for the rumble to catch up. Had to rescue a few soggy teddies from Gruff’s room.

waiting for thunder


WINNERSEvie and Bonnie eneted our local dog show today in the “Young Handler” catagory and only went and won it!


We’ve got to eleven so far without them being toppled by shaky hands, sneaky sisters or curious cat.



Sun’s out, paddling pool’s out. I have now made five trips with buckets of warm water…



Blown in hope against a sea blue sky.


Popping candy.

Must be eaten open mouthed for full impact. I still love the stuff.

popping candy

Painting the chicken house.

Thought it would be a good day to touch up the chicken house with a lick of paint. Even put a lovely chicken painting on the side.

Not sure why some of my ladies are now walking around with flecks of bright blue on their feathers…


Cat wrap.

I’ve had a very busy fun day drawing in Swansea and I’ll post all my drawings once they’re all scanned in as there are quite a few.

I’ll leave you with Arnie tonight who has just come in from the rain absoltley dripping wet. So he’s been wrapped in a towel before I let him upstairs to sleep on the kid’s beds.


cat wrap

Guerilla scribbling.

Psst…if your in Swansea tomorrow and you fancy popping into Creative Bubble on Craddock Street I’m going to be looking for people to tell me a story and I will be tweeting them throughout the afternoon (in between bouts of cake eating).

I will be wearing a purple hat with pom poms on(don’t tell Evie, it’s her hat). Why? It’s a purple hat with pom poms on. Enough said.


Guerilla scribbling


Our beach trip started with the best intentions but it was a little too cold for Evie today.


New chicks.

Meet our two latest additions to our chicken family, Bluebell and Gumball. They’re very young and won’t be laying for probably another month or so. They are very tame and don’t seem phased by all the commotion the other other chickens are raging at them through their mesh partition.
new chicks

At onesie.

In one’s onesie in the garden, in the rain, as you do when you’re eight.



Must be getting warmer, the freckles have descended in our house on the pastier of our clan (including me).


Full of it.

Evie’s caught a cold.

full of it


Evie threw a tea party for all her cats and kittens (and herself of course) but the guest of honour was Arnie who had real fish on a plate.


All hail.

On a brighter note I couldn’t help but notice some odd behaviour from my chickens this morning. Normally when it rains heavily, they sprint under the hen house to wait it out until it eases but today was different.
In the most torrential hail storm they seemed to be sprinting around their pen like something irresistably tasty had landed in their midst.
They were eating the little hailstones as they fell like a fresh sprinkling of corn.

It hurts to laugh at the moment but I broke the frown for that one.

all hail

Face ache.

I’m not much fun to be around at the moment. I have a very horrible infected wisdom tooth. Lots of pain killers and some furry hugs are helping my face not feel like it’s been thumped by a rhino.
Best diet ever, although I’m dreaming about eating digestive biscuits once my mouth is better.

face ache

Ant herding.

Keeps him busy for hours and as long as he doesn’t bring them in the house.
ant herding

Spaceships and stuff.

All of us like Star Wars. We’ve had a Chewbacca masterclass tonight and it turns out that the dog does the best Chewbacca impersonation when she yelps in her sleep.
Tomorrow’s lesson will be make a Milenium Falcon out of tin foil, sticky tape and a biscuit tub…

space ships and stuff



Thought that one of Arnie’s whiskers had somehow fallen on my face whilst sleeping but then discovered that it was one of my own (as it was attached to my own face…).



A visit to the vet.

Bonnie had her yearly check-up today and has passsed with flying colours. Don’t know why Arnie is looking so smug, his appointment is tomorrow…

a visit to the vet

Sun’s out, dog’s out.

My dog doesn’t do tanlines. At the first hint of sun she’s out the back garden chasing rays.

suns out dogs out

The “S” word.

Back to school, Mondayitis and chocolate egg withdrawal symptoms. Happy faces all round…
s word


Gruff is all bones and ribs at the moment.


Sound effects.

Hulk’s taken a right pasting today from a Thundercat. Don’t think Evie’s Ana stood a chance. Tomorrow it’s Han Solo versus Superman.

sound effects

And then there were two.

Another one appeared this morning…

and then there were two


Evie had a sewing kit for Christmas. She’s really enjoyed making little pillows and other garments for her toys to waer.

Today she created Kitty. Kitty was made out of her old vest and stuffed with pillow stuffing. She drew Kitty’s face on with felt tip.
I’ve told her not to feed it after midnight…


Mucky pup.

Easter holidays and my children revert to their natural ferel type.

mucky pup

Tea minion.

Millie made me a cup of tea today for the first time and it was perfect. Anyone who regularly reads this blog knows how much tea I drink. Today is a very happy day!

tea minion

Love me, love me.

Leaning tower of cat, all purry and happy. Oh, is that a dead mouse I see? ….ah….

love me love me

Disaster woman.

No this isn’t a gory scene that I’m re-enacting from a horror movie, it’s the moment when your long awaited bottle of fizzy wine decides to explode at the moment of un-corking
and you hope what you’re covered in is just wine and not your own blood.

This particular bottle of wine was a gift from my sister and had travelled all the way from Italy, pity we couldn’t use straws for all that wastage.
Ah well, cup of tea it is then after a mass cleaning of the crime scene…


Easter eggs.

Three children equals a lof of chocolate Easter eggs and Bunnies. I suppose I’m going to have to do the decent thing and help them eat it!

chocolate eggs

Cleopatra and Bugs.

After a frantic week gluing and painting, Cleopatra and her god-egg of mummifiaction and Bugs Bunny had a whale of a time at their parade today.

cleo and bugs

Something fishy going on.

Lesson learnt. Do not get engrossed in phone when balancing a plate of fish on your lap. There will be consequences!

something fishy

Sticking and gluing.

Well it’s that time of year again. It’s Easter Bonnet Parade time and it’s just Gruff making his hat this year as Evie is making an Easter Egg for her competition.

This year’s creation has involved an awful lot of glue and cotton wool…

Easter cafts 2016

Full of it.

Millie’s full of cold at the moment. Discarded snotty tissues litter our lounge where they were cast off after another nose blowing.

full of it


Evie is studying ancient Egypt. Bonnie is obligingly helping portray the god of mummification.


Old Ted.

My teddy bear from my childhood has been adopted by Evie. She has decided that he needs looking after and if I am not cuddling him, she should take over.
Gruff has been distraught at this prospect as he thinks I don’t love my teddy bear anymore.
I had to tell him that I do still love him, I love him enough to share him with Evie.

He’s quite a looker these days, he has my Grandfather’s sock sewn onto the back and a bandage for his tummy. He has one arm and lost his nose many moons ago. He has been to University, he has watched me draw and grow while he slowly fell apart.

I have had to spend the evening cuddling my Teddy bear to reassure Gruff that I do still love him…I’m sure Ted’s looking happier now, what do you think?

old ted#

Spring is here.

It’s 13 celcius, the sun is out in Swansea. Off with the socks!

spring is here


…my fridge-freezer had iced itself up so much it’s gone ka-put. The dog is made up as she’s getting left-overs galore.
de frosting

Helping hands.

Gruff has a pair of very large Hulk hands. He has brushed his teeth in them, stroked the cat in them (cat was not amused), attempted putting his shoes on in them, tried to drink and eat in them.

I do believe he’s currently asleep still wearing them…

helping hands

Cone of shame.

Bonnie’s over-zealous grooming has led to some sore bits on her. The cone went on this afternoon. There has been lots of bumping into things and sad doggy eyes.
I am not popular.

cone of shame


Millie’s hair is super long at the moment!


Mother’s day.

I’ve been spoilt with Ice Cream from Joe’s and lovely drawn cards. I’ll leave you with Millie’s contribution.

mothers day 2016

Happy World Book Day.


St David’s Day.

Which means most of today was spent waving daffodils, eating welshcakes and definitely singing. Wales may be a small country but we do our national day proud.
Happy St David’s day.

St Davids day 2016


Millie was sent home from school today. She’s not very well. Arnie is on call as cat nurse.


I’ve tidied my room.

ive tidied my room

Sofa pile up.

Sofa pile up

I’ve got your back.

When in fear of local moggies, hire some muscle. Job done!

ive got your back

Growing pains.

Pains up and down the lower legs, always at night too. They hurt!
growing pains

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