Sunday 31 December 2006

Index 2006

In January, Marion came to visit, the hoover regained its suck and I took photos up Rivington. In February, the allotment got trashed. In March, TJaM went to Crufts, the humans got Norovirus, the dogs ate a hare and it was TJam's brother's 30th.

In April, ducks took up residence outside our house and Beanz got her Kennel Club bronze citizen award. In May, TJam and Bamgee had a party, we all went to visit Noisette and Carlsberg threw a worm up on the carpet (no photos!). In June we got a new allotment, Mrs Chilled and Mr Chilled got married, Noisette got her PhD, Carlsberg wandered and then got an abscess and Chips got her Kennel Club Bronze citizen award.

July was dominated by the cat. Radical action was taken for her abscess then she escaped and then went awol. JoeyM got married. I didn't write anything for August, but we went camping in Anglesey. In September we went to a garden party.

In October TJam went to the States and in November, a Barn owl sat on her shoulder. We went to Cazza's 40th birthday celebrations and Jean Michel came to stay. In December we had fabulous Christmas celebrations.

Thursday 28 December 2006

M6 Toll

On our drive down to London,TJam was feeling mean, and the roads were empty, so we decided we would not take the M6 Toll. We were lucky to live to regret it. I bet they haven't done any repairs on the M6 since... well, ever. It must be part of their ploy to get everyone paying the toll. As it was, with all the pot holes and concrete slabs around Birmingham, we were lucky to survive with only mild concussion. The Christmas presents did make it home in tact.

Today we made good use of the M6 Toll, while we could still get it for £3.50. It will be £4 as of 1st Jan, but it is a small price to pay to avoid serious head injury and motion sickness.

Wednesday 27 December 2006


Liqueur, Mr Liqueur and Piglet came for lunch. It was very nice, and thank you to TJam's mum for cooking a lovely spread. Sadly, no food fell on the floor so the dogs went hungry once again. Boo hiss.

Monday 25 December 2006

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas!

Here is a picture you won't see very often. All the human family sat around the table. It was taken shortly before TJam's brother nearly joined the horrific statistics of the 3 people per year who lose an eye by champagne cork. As it was, he got away with minor bruising and wetness.

We've had a fabulous Christmas. Us animals got loads of presents that we would like to eat straight away, but which the humans are rationing. Meanwhile, they are stuffing their faces.

Luckily, the decoration project of the house hasn't moved on, so we are all sleeping downstairs. Beanz and I are making the most of diving under the covers and sleeping comfortably with TJam.

Sunday 24 December 2006

Rolling - by Chips

Today has been a day for rolling. Rolling on tufts of grass, rolling in smells, rolling in fox poo. I love rolling. I love dancing around the smell, wagging my tail, dropping my left shoulder, changing my mind, dropping my right shoulder and scooting my neck across the floor. I love getting up and doing it all over again. And again. And again.

Today has been a day for having a bath. I do not love having a bath.

Friday 22 December 2006

Merry Alternative Christmas!

Today, TJam and Bamgee celebrated their alternative Christmas. They had nut roast and brussel sprouts. Us dogs had a hide chew, but Chips didn't eat hers. They must be a dodgy batch. I had 2.

Bamgee gave TJam a mini trampoline. TJam has always wanted a trampoline, ever since she saw a display (in which a girl fell and hurt her neck) at the Walnuts Trampoline Club in 1976. Now her dreams have come true. Here is Bamgee, giving a demonstration in her new Christmas wellies.

Merry Christmas everyone.

Thursday 21 December 2006

Old Friend

I got a Christmas card from Anna today. Anna, my lovely friend who I ate more bowls of peanuts, raisins and chocolate chips with in the name of A level revision, than I care to remember. She kept my secret: that I never actually read or understood, "Nostromo", even though I wrote a full 4 page essay on it. We cycled to school together. She went to youth band and was in the relay team. Last year, my card to her was returned as a "not known at this address. Addressee has moved".

So Anna, if you're reading this, please email me so I can write to you! I miss you and I think of you often. And congratulations on your life and beautiful children :)

Monday 18 December 2006


Hooray. TJam's lovely new wellies have arrived. She has been wellieless for 2 weeks and it has not been fun. Trainers lined with carrier bags just don't compare.

These are Muckboots and we have to say, they are like walking on air, apparently. They are also safe from -20 to +75 degrees but we hope TJam never has to test them. I hope they go better than the muddies that she wore through in 3 months and had to be replaced after 6. Unfortunately she left them in a pub near Shrewsbury where they went missing. Good luck to the people who took them. I'd say they had a few weeks left in them. They also didn't have any kind of sole. These new ones have proper soles so TJam won't slip over in the mud. Well, hopefully not.

We are now going out to christen them. They are the best boots TJam has ever had so far.


Note to TJam: Do not confuse your own blue towel that you take swimming, with the blue dog towel.

The first she knew of this was when she got a face full of fur after her lovely shower. Our apologies to the cleaners at the pool, especially around the shower and drying area. TJam did her best to remove most of the black dog hairs that fell onto the floor. Without sharing too much information, suffice to say that her whole body looks like she needs a shave and her clothes are feeling very itchy all over.

Saturday 16 December 2006

Mystery Benefactor

Today I received a shopping voucher for £5. It came from Leeds. I have no idea who it is from. Thank you to the mysterious sender.

I hope it is not my agenda for change backpay.

Friday 15 December 2006

Funny or Mortifying?

TJam was involved in making a video about a charity. It was all going so well. Her t-shirt is faded and grey, so she had squeezed into a 10-year old child's t-shirt so to match everyone else.

After 5 minutes of filming, the video guy said to her, "Do you want to nip to the bathroom and sort your hair out?"

Being a believer that it is what's on the inside that counts, and having been raised to believe that vanity is the worst of sins, TJam said it was ok. It was hard to stick to her principles when clearly she looked rough as ... something very rough.

He said, "OK then, but this is for posterity you know"

TJam thought it was funny, but when she's told people, they have been mortified on her behalf. She still thinks it is funny.

Children Disappointed Worldwide

Santa is dead.

I know this because his 10 foot inflatable remains are lying in my next-door-but-one neighbours' garden.

I might invest in a puncture repair kit.


We had this really cool little dog food carrier. It held just enough food for 2 dogs for 2 days, and the 2 little bowls sloted snugly on each end. It had a little handle to carry it. It was very handy and very well used.

TJam thought it might go nicely in the dishwasher to get cleaned.

We now have a half size, unshapely pile of plastic. Think big, see through clay coil-pot shape (the kind you made when you were 5 years old). TJam thinks we don't know. But we do.

Saturday 9 December 2006

Eating Raw - by Chips

For a while now, TJam has pondered feeding us dogs a raw diet. This seems to be very controversial, which is why she hasn't dared to do it yet, wanting more information and more evidence. Carlsberg catches her own natural diet and doesn't seem any the worse for it. I digress.

We went to Rivington today. I found a dead sheep and ate its leg. TJam couldn't get anywere near me. I just kept running and crunching til I'd finished it.

I have been fine since. I consider it being proactive. The more times I eat raw and am fine, the more evidence for our case of decent and varied food, not a bowl of dried kibble. Victoria Stillwell from "It's me or the dog" says that dogs should have variation so they don't get bored.

So TJam, LISTEN UP! Remember the time Beanz and I ate the hare? WE WERE FINE! Remember that squirrel? FINE. The thing that looked like a human foot? Fine. (Well, I was fine, Beanz threw hers up at the vet after she got spayed and they kept it in a see through plastic bag to shame you when you went to pick her up.) But all in all, we eat carcusses and are fine. Please give us more carcasses.

Wednesday 6 December 2006

Good Trains

In other news, TJam managed to be standing on the platform of a station 15 minutes before her train was due to leave, yet not see the train standing there, or anyone getting onto it, and only realised 10 minutes after it had pulled out of the station (if it was ever really there, which she doubts, but the Guard says it was so it's his word against TJam's!).

We must commend Virgin for their flexible handling of the situation. They let TJam get on the next train, even though she had paid for a reserved seat. That's not the kind of service she was expecting. So instead of, "you missed it. You'll have to buy another ticket", it was, "You can get the next train instead". Wow. It's a long time since she wrote (or even thought) anything nice about train travel. Maybe things have taken a turn for the better. Anyway, credit to Virgin.

Friday 1 December 2006

What's worse than...

Mrs Chilled and TJam shared a room for the while volunteering at the weekend. As they were just about to go to bed, there was a shriek, and there, between Mrs Chilled's 2 pillows, was a faded pink, flowery, nylon nightie that smelt of an elderly woman.

She phoned down and they delivered clean sheets.

They were struggling to see a bright side to all this, until Bamgee pointed out (via text) that at least there was noone actually in the nightie. Suddenly it seemed like somehow they'd got off lightly.

Organised Friends

We got our first Christmas card today. It was made by the lovely Liqueur and my not-goddaughter. Now that is organised.