Step back in time to the vintage sounds of music - played on a pianola,
accompanied by a flute and violin, or the lost in the strains played back on a
gramophone. Music conjures up a multitude of emotions, mostly to do with the
heart. And "Melody of Love" is no different. It is a beautiful romantic kit
with a touch of vintage which will delight any collector and perfect for ANY
With a splash of colour in delightful array, "Behind the Mask" is a
celebration of life and love of a different kind. Whether one is still behind
the mask or out in full glory, this kit is a Mardi Gras sensation to celebrate
being who you are!
As the southern hemisphere farewells summer, the northern hemisphere begins
to see the first signs of spring with the first flowers and the caterpillars,
asleep through the winter, awaken into beautiful butterflies. Filled with beauty
and delight, perfect for any springtime or Easter project, "Fresh Start" is the
promise of new beginnings.
Today I was asked something that I've never really thought about before. A friend's in laws are having their aged and sick dog put to sleep, and she knows and appreciates my love and understanding of animals, asked me - how to explain Rainbow Bridge to her son, who is taking the loss of the family pet very hard. I had to ponder what to say, as it's not something I've actually thought about before. As an animal lover we just know about Rainbow Bridge, and it's our comfort just knowing our animals go there to await us when they pass.
So how do I explain what Rainbow Bridge is?
Basically it's a place reserved for all our pets and animals - a place where they all go to from years gone by, where they await our arrival when our time comes, when we will join them again one day. At Rainbow Bridge, they are free from pain, sickness, disabilities, age and are whole again, running free with all of our other lost beloved pets. I guess it's a kind of Heaven just for animals, where all the abused, neglected, surrendered animals from the pound that never found their forever homes, victims of BSL, dogfighting and cruelty, and of course our beloved pets of all kinds, can run free again - free from any affliction they were subjected to in the human world. At Rainbow Bridge, there is only unconditional love of the animal kind.
When I thought about it, I found explaining the concept of Rainbow Bridge rather difficult, because it is just something as an animal lover, I've always known and taken comfort in. I guess we just kind of take that way of thinking for granted - that everyone else does too. But this friend's son is just a child and I'm sure the mere thought of losing a pet is heartbreaking enough, without trying to make some kind of sense of it....though some children do surprise us with their childlike wisdom in such matters. And such is the case in what I believe to be the best explanation for the passing of a beloved pet. I thought of this, the best explanation ever, as I stood there holding our beloved Sheba in my arms after she had passed....and I choked on the words as I shared with everyone who was there the paraphrased version of this story I share with you now - as the best explanation.
A Dog's Purpose - from a 6-year-old
Being a veterinarian, I had been called to examine a ten-year-old Irish Wolfhound named Belker. The dog's owners, Ron, his wife, Lisa, and their little boy, Shane, were all very attached to Belker and they were hoping for a miracle.
I examined Belker and found he was dying. I told the family we couldn't do anything for Belker and offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old dog in their home.
As we made arrangements, Ron and Lisa told me they thought it would be good for six-year-old Shane to observe the procedure. They felt as though Shane might learn something from the experience.
The next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker's family surrounded him. Shane seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered if he understood what was going on. Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away.
The little boy seemed to accept Belker's transition without any difficulty or confusion. We sat together for a while after Belker's death, wondering aloud about the sad fact that animal lives are shorter than human lives. Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up, "I know why."
Startled, we all turned to him. What came out of his mouth next stunned me. I'd never heard a more comforting explanation.
He said, "People are born so that they can learn how to live a good life -- like loving everybody all the time and being nice, right?"
The six-year-old continued,
"Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don't have to stay as long."
The wisdom of that child to make, not only a statement, but share such a comforting explanation is just mind-blowing! I've never heard it explained so perfectly before, and I will never EVER forget that story. It has done the rounds on the internet, I'm sure, for many years but it never grows old.
I shared this story with my friend and she found it extremely helpful to help comfort her grieving son with the loss of a beloved pet. Because truth be told, this is the best explanation I have ever heard!
I want to share with you the poem I wrote when we had to let our beloved Sheba go to Rainbow Bridge. It hurt like hell, and I was inconsolable for days! I wrote this as a form of therapy in the form of a message from our Sheba.
Ten days after Sheba left us, I brought home Ciara and for a while I felt as though I was somehow betraying Sheba's memory by loving Ciara, but that's normal. Sheba wanted us to have Ciara - I believe she chose her for us - and I brought her home where she made herself completely at home at once, but most of all, she was the perfect therapy to help grieve for Sheba. We still miss Sheba and we always will, but with time the pain eases. Getting another dog was the best thing to help the grieving process, and I've never looked back. I cannot imagine my life without a dog.
Christmas 2010, I found a bedraggled looking Blue Heeler wandering the streets and after some chasing, he jumped into my car. He look tired, weary and as though he had been on the streets for a while. He had just a rusty chain for a collar and no microchip, no ID - nothing. He was dirty, smelly, flea-ridden and when I bathed him he cried in pain. I took him to my vets and he had a flea allergy which caused a skin infection which then in turn was causing the odour he had. But I loved him and looked after him, and within a week of treatment he was a new boy! He had a smile and a little prance in his step. Ciara adored him, and he adored her. I had him desexed, microchipped and registered. It was thought he had a neurological condition that was causing some weakness to his lower extremities, causing his incontinence and the weakness in his back legs. By the end of winter he could no longer walk unaided. I ordered him a wheelchair from the US which he loved and it gave him a new lease of life...even if for just a few short months. Even his front legs grew weaker and the time had come to make the decision once again. Jasper touched everyone's hearts who met him - he had overcome being abandoned, neglected then incontinence, dementia and ultimately the loss of the use of his legs. And just 3 days shy of the year since I had rescued him, I held Jasper one last time and I stayed with him and looked into his eyes as he left us for Rainbow Bridge. No matter how hard or painful it was, I would not leave him at this hour. He had already been abandoned, probably because he was beginning to show signs of incontinence and whoever owned him previously didn't want the bother or expense of looking after an older disabled dog. I was not leaving him now. And I didn't. My beautiful boy left us, but he was now free from pain and disorientation and could run free again at Rainbow Bridge.
Ciara grieved for him. She was there to say goodbye to him, but she was very subdued when he left us. I was sick in bed for 3 days after that and she never left my side. On Christmas Eve I got her Christmas gift in the form of Dexter, to whom she was indifferent for a while due to grieving for Jasper. But 10 days after bringing Dexter home I took him in to be desexed, and all day Ciara pined for him! The last time her "brother" went to the vet he never came home again! When I picked Dexter up that afternoon, Ciara was so overjoyed to see him...and they have been inseparable ever since!
No matter the pain of losing a pet, I would do it all again. You see, the years of love, joy, happiness, devotion and laughs they have given me far far FAR outweigh the pain of losing them - no matter how painful it is. What they have given us while they were with us FAR OUTWEIGHS that....by far!
Below is my boy, Jasper, whom I rescued from the streets 23rd December 2010, and who left us for Rainbow Bridge 20th December 2011.
Love her or hate her - Dexter's Hannah McKay has captured the attentions of our favourite serial killer, but not to kill her. And is it any wonder why? Hannah is played by Australian actress Yvonne Strahovski! Like me, she is a western Sydney girl having been born in Campbelltown, then attending and graduating from the University of Western Sydney Nepean campus (which is just a stone's throw from me).
In a recent interview with the Australian Times, she said: “It’s great to be able to play different types of characters. Hannah is definitely a darker character for me than some of my other roles, and Michael C. Hall was a great inspiration in how to play a character that is dark but still likable. He has the ability to change the dynamic where the audience is rooting for the serial killer to win.”
Also from the article:
The actress said that she was a fan of Dexter prior to taking on the role of Hannah McKay, watching all of the six previous seasons back-to-back before starting filming. She told Australian Times that working with the show’s cast and crew was an enjoyable experience and that she was thrilled to work on what is expected to be the award-winning program’s penultimate season.
She said: “Being on Dexter is one of my favourite things that I have ever done and I am blessed to have had the opportunity to work with such a professional cast and crew. Michael C. Hall and Jennifer Carpenter are amazing actors, the set was very chilled out and I had a blast working with everyone on the show.”
After a 2011 season that received lacklustre reviews, critics have praised Dexter as having returned to form in the upcoming season which screened in the United States of America in late 2012. Strahovski said that, while she had not read any reviews, the public response to her role on Dexter had been positive.
Well, as fans probably know, Season 6 wasn't the best Dexter season, so it's no surprise the reviews were what was described as "lacklustre". The Season 6 ending, which showed Deb walking in on Dexter killing Travis Marshall, was the cliffhanger to end all cliffhangers!! Making us fans wait an entire year to see the outcome. UK fans are just about to get Season 7, while Australia screened each episode just hours after it premiered in the US, on a Pay TV channel. Watching the story unfold in Season 7 was nailbiting to say the least, and it is during this season we were introduced to Hannah McMcKay. It's obvious by all accounts that Hannah will be returning in Season 8, but in what capacity, we shall have to wait and see....
Can you believe we are halfway through February already? I had all these plans for Valentine's kits that just never came to fruitition, and time just seemed to slip away.
I do have two new releases this month especially for the romantic at heart - whether it be Valentine's or just anytime! Both kits are available in both Full Size AND Tagger, and are beautiful and incredibly romantic.
I have a number of sales running in my stores at the moment!
(But be sure to keep checking back as sales keep changing)
And don't forget the Weekend Deals at Wilma4Ever!!
This week I have 5 beautiful kits for you!
(click previews to go to the products in store)
Buy My Store
And don't forget my BUY MY STORE deal available EXCLUSIVELY at Twilight Scraps!
This is the best way to buy my products as you get ALL my CU and PU products for one low price AND Twilight Scraps is the ONLY STORE in which all my products are available! So you won't be able to get many of these products anywhere else, but here.
So what are you waiting for? Start shopping! And see you in store! *hugs*
Well, the meet and greet went really well today. Started off taking them all for a walk separately before introducing them, and then we introduced Ciara, who did some serious butt and what-not sniffing to check him out, and then we took them for a little walk together before returned and introduced dexter. They all went well, but then they were all hot as well...lol, though I never foresaw any problems. The trainer at the kennels was a bit concerned about them what with Ciara being a dominant, but I think he must have misunderstood me when I said that she was. what I meant is that in all packs, with all animals, there is a heirarchy - Ciara is just at the top of that - was all I meant. In that respect, there was absolutely nothing to worry about.
The main concern now is Charlie-boy's behaviour. It has always been thought he suffers from separation anxiety, but the trainer at the kennels doesn't think that it is. He thinks it is more bad behaviour, bad manners and no real discipline. Now Charlie-boy has had free reign for the years until he came into foster care, and has obviously not known any boundaries. So Charlie is being crate-trained (which is a new one on us as we've never crate-trained before), and he doesn't like going into the crate and boy, is he strong! I put him in there briefly for a couple of minutes while I was on here, and he proceeded to cry and rattle the cage. I let him out when I had to go and get the washing in.
All three pooches are now sprawled on the tiled floor underneath the table here. Except when the neighbour over the back calls her cat - then Dexter starts woofing, which in turn sets Charlie and Ciara off woofing as well. lol And all she did was call "Mimi!" once...every so often.
So after discussing it with Vicki, we are on an extended adoption trial of 4 weeks, afterwhich we can adopt him. Though she stressed that if it is too much don't feel like we HAVE to keep him and feel bad about taking him back, because HE IS a difficult boy and can be very destructive. I watched him in the crate when I put him in and he latched onto it and went hammer and tong on it, shaking it this way and that. All because he didn't want to be in there. Basically like a little child throwing a tanty. As adorable as he is, Charlie-boy is a brat! And THAT is what we have to train OUT of him.
Yes, it will be a challenge...but, it's a learning experience for us all - canines and humans alike! Charlie-boy really is adorable, and really does seem eager to please so that in itself will help in training. He is just stubborn - staffy stubborn - and very very strong! But Charlie - me boss, you pooch!
We have a storm going on at the moment and he doesn't seem overly phased at all by it...whereas Ciara is panting like a steam train. lol
Anyway....stay tuned for more on Charlie-boy, as I'm sure there will be more to come!
Well, the big day is here....tomorrow at least. Tomorrow morning we head up to the kennels with Ciara and Dexter to meet the beautiful Charlie-boy! I'm trying my best NOT to be anxious, but the suspense is almost killing me! I am remaining positive that all will go well but there is a part of you that just wants to get it over with so we can all relax again.
This is an important day, not so much for us but for Charlie. He has had a rough time of it going back and forth between various homes that just never lasted, which of course only adds to his anxiety. Tomorrow is important for him because after all he has been through he really REALLY needs a home. And we want to offer that for him, and be his safe haven.
When we meet tomorrow, we will do a slow introduction with Ciara (our boss girl) before bringing Dexter into the equation. Because it is important that Ciara meets him first, gets to know him with some serious butt-sniffing and the like and maybe a little play - as she is the canine pack leader. Then we will slowly introduce Dexter because he is a hyper boy, Ciara does tend to jump in when Dexter is playing with another to "protect" her boy. This is the important factor and we need to work it just right. I do so want this to go well for Charlie, because he needs a good home, and we want to give him that so he never has to be pushed from pillar to post again.
Please keep us in your thoughts tomorrow, and that for Charlie's sake, it all goes smoothly....and Charlie can be "home" at last.
Here is Charlie, enjoying the sunshine and interaction with all the other dogs at Dogwoods Country Kennels. He loves the company of both people and canines alike, and seems to be doing quite well considering all his recent setbacks. While I'm not usually a huge fan of kennels this particular one seems to a fabulous place, set amongst the vast bushland of the Blue Mountains boasting a huge acreage on which they reside.
I visited the Kennels' Facebook page this morning and was greeted with this happy smiley photo of the Charlie-boy, captioned "Charlie - another happy staffy". Is there any other kind? lol It was great to see the photo on there, and it helped ease a few fears I had for the little guy stuck all the way up there - being bounced about from pillar to post.
Do I have a home, or do I not have a home - that is the question?!
Well, Charlie-boy, just you hang in there! Just another 2 nights at the Kennels and we'll be up on Sunday morning to meet and greet you with your two new (hopefully) siblings. And all going well, you will come home with us and start your new life - once and for all!
I have discussed the situation with my two and have had words with Ciara, the lady boss, and have reassured her that SHE will always be my girl but this little guy needs to know the love and comforts that she and Dexter are lucky enough to enjoy. Ciara is very intuitive, and she can sense your mood, how you feel and knows what you are thinking long before you even voice them, so it was important that I reassure her that she is not going to be left out and that she is still my girl.
On the day I received the call to say Charlie was on his way to the kennels as his adoption trial fell through (again), talks were had and plans were being made - Ciara knew. For that very afternoon when we returned home from some errands they both greeted us excitedly, but Ciara then took herself up to the back corner of the yard and nestled herslef in the garden behind a mass of lantana and jasmine (and weeds) - which is her "safe place" when she feels scared. I called her and she came out but just stood in the middle of the yard, not coming any further. She knew. So since then I have been working with her to reassure her that she's still my girl, and having little chats about Charlie with them. She knows. She understands. So it's important I stay positive about the situation and not let her feel threatened in any way.
I've also reminded her of the times Dexter annoys her and pesters her to play, even when she just wants to relax, and I've told her that as they are of similar ages, Charlie and Dexter could be happily playing together outside or in the back room while she just "chills out" on the couch in the house or on the bed. No need to be disturbed or being pestered to play all the time. As an older girl approaching her 8th birthday in April, she likes to enjoy a nap or two more often. Dexter, of course, will be happy to have another playmate!
So hang in there, Charlie-boy! Not long now....and hopefully in 48 hours you will be curled up here with these two, enjoying the lap of luxury that is also yours to come!