Thursday, 28 February 2013

Did I Tell You

I've been getting fit recently?
To be honest I just love the "talent" at the gym!
I wish .. but to be honest I can't quite see it in Pen Y Groes!!!!

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Thanks George ...

... For my gift :) I know there was a delay, but I'm Ok about that. Just so chuffed to think you've sat there wrapping them all for us by hand!!!!!!!!!!
Can't wait for what's ahead for us this year.

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Proud Mummy

Cracking photo of Mother and son, and looking so alert.
How do I do it I hear you ask?
It was easy, I prepare all 4 for the photo, but only Mikey and Tali waited, Asha and Ziva had more important things on their minds and ran off. It gave these two something great to watch, and gave me a lovely photo!!!

Monday, 25 February 2013

Can't You Just Tell It's Cold!!!

All by the fire, well almost
Abi, Tia, Jamie, Oliver and Billy

Sunday, 24 February 2013

And Some Posing Pics ....

 Tali, Mikey, Asha and Ziva 
with Llyn Ffynhonnau (the lake) and the Nantlle Ridge behind them
the other side of the mountain
Caernarfon and Anglesey behind him
 What did you all see?
Asha, Ziva, Mikey and Tali
 No prizes for guessing who's pissed off!!!!!!
She's back!
Nico, Jezi and Finlay

Stand Off

Nico and Jezi
Who's Gonna Go First?
 Is She Still There?
Round One Goes To Jezi
 I Guess It's Love!
Now's She's Smiling ...
 But He Still LOVES Her

Friday, 22 February 2013

My Beautiful Isla

Love this photo of my new baby ....

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

On Our Mountain Today

And it feels like the first day of Spring ...
... shame Winter is due to return tomorrow!!
Ziva, Mikey, Asha and Tali
Nico, Jezi and Finlay

Sunday, 17 February 2013

The Best Decision Made

It was no secret, in the middle of last year I was quietly looking for a female to bring to Blanik. A female that would complement my bloodlines, a female I could hopefully mate to Mikey. I looked at a few kennels before contacting Heather at Conbhairean for advice ... and that when she dropped the bomb shell. "Well I've got this dog ....."
Heather told me all about the dog she called Danko. His mental and physical condition on return to the UK was an absolute disgrace, she was upset and angry that a top GSD man in another country could consider it acceptable! Danko had been back with her a few weeks by this time and had come on leaps and bounds. She felt he was now ready for a new chance at life... was I interested?
When Kai was mated to Tara I had set my heart on a male puppy ... he would be called Nico ... sadly this was not to be and Tara lost her litter. Now that Kai was gone too was this fate? Was this my opportunity to get "A Nico?" No not Kai's son, but his nephew. To be honest from the moment I was told about him I couldn't stop thinking about him...and when I saw the photos I was sold!
Nico is everything I hoped he would be, and much much more. He's a clown, he makes me smile, he makes me laugh. Yes he has his issues, there's no doubts that "pressure training" has left it's mark on this dog; but mostly he's a happy dog and he's quick to recover and trust again. (we've only had one incident this year) In my opinion, his hocks may never be as strong as they could have been had he been given normal exercise as a pup. And because of this he may never make it to the top in the show world; but to be honest what he gives me on a daily basis is worth more, tenfold. I also feel that if I was to go on with "Germanic" showing he will need more training, and I've no one to help me these days. I can easily put a ring up in the field, but I need people and dogs to help with the work. Sadly I have neither in this area and St Helens is my nearest breed training club.
Yes I see Kai in him, his head is very similar in shape, and though he's not as tall he's a big boned strong male who also likes the sound of his own voice. He's like a whirl wind at times, you feel the living room is not big enough for this over sized puppy!  But strangely he's a lot like Louis too. Very obedient, happy, bubbly, bouncy and very very cuddly. It was so nice that he and Louis had become friends, in my opinion he was blessed to have had time with Louis. There was no one better to show him the positives of life, Louis loved the world .... and his dog! Then there's Mikey, they'll never be friends, and though I don't see it people often get the two confused. I guess it's the black mask that does it!
I feel blessed, I do feel truly blessed to have this dog at my side. It was the right decision, anyone who wants to take the time to get to know him will find out he really is a wonderful wonderful dog!

Saturday, 16 February 2013

Miss Cuddle Bum

The Devil Will Find Work
For Idle Paws To Do
One reason I had for considering another cats was because Jamie has been such a shit recently. With the long Winter nights keeping him indoors he's bored, and he takes it out on everybody! I guess he misses Riley and really only has Billy to wrestle with now, and Billy is no spring chicken!  No surprises here but Oliver doesn't want to know, Tia's well, what can I say? She's just Tia, and poor Abi's been living in cuckoo land for years now. So I had thought maybe in the Spring I'd get another little boy cat that would cope with some rough and tumble. I had mentioned it at home, but Stevie had said a categorical no, but circumstances changed and Isla arrived. To be honest I really don't think Isla is the right cat to be Jamie new sparring partner.
I'd prefer a cuddle
Isla is affectionate and cuddly, she'd sooner sit on your lap or nuzzle in your neck than play or charge around the house. Toys are of very little interest to her and Jamie is of even less interest to her at the moment! (Though she likes the ball on a string that Lin's mum gave Riley .. and ribbons, yeah she likes ribbons!) She has no fear of the dogs but spits if she feels intimidated if the cats show too much interest in her. She seems a very gently little creature, a sweetie and quite the "lady" really. 
Will Isla ever be up for wresting with an overweight tabby? Well you never know, but I doubt it somehow!

Thursday, 14 February 2013

Wednesday, 13 February 2013


After 7 and a half hours of hiding a dusty Isla turned up, still in the kitchen and looking for her tea. Steve and I had pulled the house apart looking for her. To be honest I was really distressed and worried sick that somehow she'd got out! ... Ah well, now I can relax and have a cuppa!!!

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

When Isla Met Nico (And Finlay)

I think it went quite well really,
Though he did spit all over her!!!
Have you ever been to Scotland then?
 The alistation spat on me!
So pretty

Black Smoke or Smoke Tabby Cat?

I know very little about genetics, the mode of inheritance of colours etc in cats; but having Isla means I have just had to look it up and find out what I can about Smoke coloured cats. Though I guess most of the information applies to pedigree cats I'm still curious and have lots to learn.
A page on common cat colours makes no reference to "Smoke Tabby's"  .....
"If your cat is pretty much solid black or gray, but the roots of the hairs are distinctly white, it is a "smoke." (It's normal for the roots on a solid cat to be grayish; true smokes, on the other hand, have definite white roots.) Smokes are the solid version of silver tabbies. These cats are very dramatic because when they move, the hair parts and the white undercoat can be seen.
  • A "black smoke" is a solid black cat with white roots.
  • A "blue smoke" is a solid blue (gray) cat with white roots."
It seems one parent has to have a white undercoat for the kitten to be a smoke. It is Often difficult to tell them from solid colour kittens except that smokes sometimes have white around the eyes and a paler stomach. It may take some months to tell which kittens will be smoke because the full coat colour is sometimes not seen until the adult coat comes in at 2 years. Undercoat begins to show at 3 weeks, and by 6-8 weeks they have a mottled look.
"The bottom eighth of each hair is white or creamy-white, with the rest of the hair being a solid colour. Genetically this colour is a non-agouti cat with the dominant inhibitor gene; a non-agouti version of the silver tabby. Smoke cats will look solid coloured until they move, when the white undercoat becomes apparent. It is mostly found in pedigreed cats (especially longhair breeds) but also present in some domestic longhaired cats."
So it seems "Black Smoke Tabby" is colour/coat pattern so it has NO bearing on personality or anything else and there's no "history" on it. "Smoke" is simply a colouration where the hairs are white at the base and black at the tips. And tabby as we know is a coat pattern. So little Isla is a Black Smoke Tabby ..... I think!!!!! (or a Black Smoke ... or a Smoke Tabby ... lol)

Monday, 11 February 2013

They Tell Me It's Called Sunshine

Though bloody hell it was bitterly cold!
Ziva, Mikey, Asha and Tali
On The Move
Jezi, Nico and Finlay

Just had to share this one of Nico
Love it!

Loca the Pug singing......'The pug that couldn't run'

If you haven't see this ... please watch it. It makes me laugh ... and cry... so heart warming
Don't forget to read the bit at the end ....

Sunday, 10 February 2013

She's Here

Meet Isla

Long story cut short ... well short ish! After loosing Riley so young I had no intention of taking on another cat; but a close friend had other ideas and went out of her way to try and find me another grey tabby. She was unsuccessful but when a local farmer took a young Smoke Tabby female to the vets, (Her place of work) she thought there was a chance she could come an live at "Blanik." The cat that is not the friend!!!
The teenage kitten is a gift, but a gift with condition, take her on only if "it's the right thing to do for you, if she will help you heal." During the call there was a lot of tears and apprehension and I didn't come to an instant decision ... I've thought long and hard over the last 24-36 hrs and believe you me I've cried a lot too.
The financial implications did not help. Riley's close on £1,000 vet bill still looms over us. Thank God the vets are willing to accept monthly payments. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, but no one could have forseen the outcome with Riley. We had to take the chance, he was just a baby we had to give him the chance of life. I don't regret my decisions, my only regret is that he didn't make it to share a life with us. He touched my heart, took a piece of it with him I guess, but I was privileged to have met him, live with him and love him.
Life is far too short and this little lady needs a home. It may be a little manic at Blanik but we have the space and the love to give, we also have plenty of food on the table and a lonely naughty 3 year old Jamie who needs someone to play with. I look forward to meeting Isla this afternoon and making her part of our family...

Thursday, 7 February 2013

It Never Passes

Without me thinking about you ....
Blade D.O.B - 7.2.91

I'm Going Slightly Mad ....

No doubts little Abi is starting to look old, and as she's approaching 18years old she damn well has every right too! Physically she looks well, though maybe a little thin and possibly deaf, but mentally I'm not too sure. Steve and I are both convinced that she is senile, all I can say is that I hope she's happy in that little world she's living in.
Hard to believe that in her 18 years she's met every dog I've ever owned. She knew Blade and Pepsi, was here when Nikki gave birth to the "A" litter and she's now watching the "H" girls growing up.
I'm not sure how many more months or years she has to go ... her behaviour has changed drastically over the last few weeks. The cat that hadn't been in the living room for over 10 years now doesn't want to be anywhere else. She eats well, drinks normally and sleeps a lot .. yeah plod on little one.

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

The Show Team

What do you think of my handy work?

Windy Walk

Don't you just hate it when your walking uphill but a strong cold wind is determined to blow you back down the way you came. Still the sun was beautiful, the sky dramatic and the dogs loved it ...  and at least I got blown back home in record time!
Mikey and Ziva in front with Tali and Asha at the back

Jezi, Finlay's bottom(Sorry!!) and Nico in the distance

Monday, 4 February 2013

Sisters Update

Steve and I both believe that Jezi is wasted as a pet, she's far too clever for her own good. She really should be in a working home, but would need a handler clever enough to get her motivated, getting her to actually do what you want is never really that easy. Jezi likes to get her own way, she's stubborn determined and excellent at throwing a deaf ear!
In contrast Ziva is far easier, very trainable and so eager to please. Ziva's no were near as devious as Jezi. I'm not saying she's thick, she's not; but Jezi is like Tali ..always one step ahead, always questions what's in it for her? And then usually decides to do her own thing anyway. I call Ziva my little "smiler"  her recall is instant and she does seem to smile when returning to me enthusiastically. She is affectionate and cheeky but sensitive and really hates a row.
Jezi is the class clown, draws attention to herself by lying on her back or by incessant pawing! She is affectionate, but only on her own terms, and she doesn't give a shit how cross I get with her. After all, what she's doing is probably far more important anyway! 
Our girls are like chalk and cheese in character and looks. But I love them both for who they are, Yes I'm very very proud of both of them. 

Sunday, 3 February 2013

More Jezi Baba

..Her other names include:  Baba Yaga, Jezeda and Ienzabada
Today we see this figure as a hideous witch with supernatural powers and an insatiable hunger for human flesh. Tales about her exploits come from Russia and East European countries. She is known throughout these areas as a trickster who entices human victims into her lair where they meet with a horrific end if they are unable to perform the impossible task she puts before them. Jezi Baba is said to reward the good – those who can perform her chores correctly and in a timely manner – and eats the bad – those who displease her. Because the tales of this figure were not written down until the nineteenth century, her ancient past is more hidden from us. As an archaic mother goddess,Jezi Baba was banished to the forest and marginalized as a witch with the arrival of organized religion. After the banishment, she had dual aspects – she is sometimes a canabal and at other times a spiritual guide. Ever, she is grouchy and unpredictable and must be handled with care.
Now Jezi Baba is seen as a hideous, gigantic ogre. It is said she travels with Death and eats the souls of his victims. She is described as having fangs of stone or knife blades and her eyes, like Medusa’s, petrify anyone she gazes upon. Her mouth, in some versions, is said to stretch from earth to the gates of hell. In other variations, she drops her jaw when she sees an unsuspecting human and it opens into a cave that the person walks into and is swallowed whole. Her hands are tipped with the claws of a bear and she wears a necklace made of human skulls. She also likes to smoke a pipe. Jezi Baba is enormous in stature and it’s said that when she lies down, her head is at one end of her little hut, her feet at the other and her hooked, blue nose touches the ceiling. Her mode of transportation is either a mortar, rowing or steering with the pestle, or an iron kettle. She sweeps the air with a fiery broom made of birch, cleaning her tracks as she goes (Russia has a strong tradition of foot-tracking magic).
Our Jezi Baba
-Did she really deserve this name?
The aforementioned hut is an entity of its own. Its name is Izbushka and it stands on chicken/hen legs at each corner. It whirls about constantly, but obeys orders. If one were to say, “Izbushka, Izbushka! Stand with your back to the forest and your front to me.” it will. The hut is found in a clearing, deep within a birch forest and is made from bones of Jezi Baba's victims as is the fence surrounding the house. The railing is decorated with the skulls of the witch’s dinner and their eye sockets glow. The hut’s windows shut like eyes and the keyholes have sharp teeth, the bolt is a hand.
Even though she is frightening and hideous, scholars believe that this hag was once a potent female nature spirit. She likely was once a provider of healing, protection and guidance. As with Medusa, Baba Yaga is connected to the cycle of life and death. In early tales, she is the keeper of the Water of Life and Death, dropping a bit of water on a victim which allows the body to die and the soul to be reborn.
As with many a powerful, mother goddess, the number three crops up in many tales about her. She has three ghostly horsemen that ride in front of her hut – white (day), red (noon) and black (night). In this vein, when she takes flight there are three birds which accompany her on her journeys – the crow, raven and owl (which can also represent night and day). It is said that Baba Yaga has three sons, in some versions they are dragons. Other variations claim she has three, equally vile sisters. There are countless tales tied to her of a mother with two daughters. Multiples of three are often the case with mother goddesses for they represent the maid, mother and crone. As further example, here is a Russian Love Spell which invokes Baba Yaga:

In the ancient realm, there is an open field
In the open field, there is a wizened oak
Around the wizened oak dance thrice-nine maidens
From beneath the wizened oak emerges Baba Yaga
She lights thrice-nine oak-wood fires
Burn for me, as
  Fierce, hot and pure as Baba Yaga’s thrice-nine fires!

Not living up to her name sake ...
... these days anyway!!!
Evidence points toward Jezi Baba having shamanistic roots. We see this in one of her names, “Baba Yaga Bony Leg” which rhymes in Russian and has a resonance that it lacks in English. Somehow, this is indicative of her shamanic connection. Her cannibalism, which could indicate ancient blood sacrifice, also points toward a spiritualistic past. Initiates from around the world describe their induction ceremonies in similar terms: they are “killed”, chopped up, cooked and consumed by spirits who then resurrect them. Once reborn, the shaman has powers previously not acquired. Tales of Jezi Baba’s cannibalism may be seen in this aspect.
Another suggestion is that her eating of human flesh is tied to the moon. According to this interpretation, she is the moon. Symbolically, she eats her own body and then regenerates (waxing and waning). Izbushka turns on its chicken feet in time to the moon’s phases. When the lunar body is full, her door is open and the hut is accessible to the living – she is fat, happy and pregnant. It is only when the crescent moon is visible that one needs to watch out, for she is hungry and her womb and belly are empty.
Double-faith – tenuous but simultaneous practice of ancient Pagan traditions and Christianity – can be applied to Jezi Baba. With the arrival of the organized religion, the figure who casts a dominant shadow over Russian folklore, moved deep into the birch forest. Here, she awaits visitors and is the inspiration for countless tales. As with Lilith in Jewish tales, Jezi Baba is so infamous she doesn’t need to be named. References to the old woman in the birch forest are enough to identify her. She seems to have developed into the boogie-woman of the forest, a tool for parents to use in order to scare children into good behavior. Stories of the crone speak of fear, but also tremendous respect and even love. 

Saturday, 2 February 2013

Waiting ....

There ain't no point in moving on
Until you've got somewhere to go
And the road that I have walked upon
Well, it filled my pockets
And emptied out my soul

All those insecurities
That have held me down for so long
I can't say I've found a cure for these
But at least I know them
So they're not so strong

You look for your dreams in heaven
But what the hell are you supposed to do
When they come true?

There's one year of my life in these songs
And some of them are about you
Now I know there's no way I can write those wrongs
Believe me
I would not lie, you've hurt my pride
And I guess there's a road without you

But you once said
There's a way back for every man
So here I am
Don't people change, here I am
Is it too late to try again?
Here I am