Blog No 157 – Happy 10th Birthday Lottie ❤️

I can’t believe we’ve had Lottie for 10 years. I can still remember the day we got her. If you didn’t know already, she’s my little Canadian. We drove towards the USA border in whiteout conditions. The snow that day was very heavy and visibility was poor. We met the sellers in a Tim Hortons (Coffee Shop) car park and exchanged money for our wee bundle of fluff.

She was a tiny little thing and the rut of the litter. I didn’t care as her advertisement photos were just adorable. She got the name of Lottie from me as I loved the name. She was the cutest thing ever, her legs were so small the actual stairs were bigger than her. She was toilet trained to go to a pee mat, which was a blessing when she arrived.

She’s never been any trouble, ok she does get excited when people come in. I think that’s normal for most dogs and she yaps again when people stand up to leave. I think that little habit came from when she was a puppy. People would love to pick her up as soon as they came in and again when they left because she was so cute.

She’s been by side everyday and still to till this day she is all over me. Mr Zebrakat will spoil her with treats, yet she favours me. She is wise too, I know when the cancer is being naughty again as Lottie will sit on the spot. She loves snuggles and when I sleep, she will sleep too. Here’s some facts about Lottie

  • She still only weights about 4lbs
  • Her favourite drink is water
  • She loves a walk
  • She has no interest in toys
  • She loves cheese and ice cream
  • She paws you for belly rubs
  • She loves snow and the sun
  • She hates rain
  • She’s doesn’t have a go at the postman
  • She’s smaller than Hamish the cat

She’s been my most loyal pet to date. I would be lost without her. Happy Birthday Lottie!!! Thank you for 10 years of snuggles and happiness. ❤️

Weekly Blog No 110 – Lottie’s 7th Birthday

Another year has passed and I can’t believe it’s been 2 years since I left my homeland Canada. I’ve talked about things that I missed from Canada before but I know my human Mum’s heart is still in Canada. I know she’s missing her friends dearly.

I guess I am too, I miss my furry friends Oscar & Monty. My crush was Oscar, he was tall, dark and handsome, just like what most woman wish for in the male variety. Monty was pretty submissive in my company but could give a great chase for a big dog. Oscar on the other hand was not only handsome but he had adorable ears, I would like to jump up and bite them. It’s not like my furry friends can jump on a plane and come see me nor I to them. Never mind, I will continue to dream about Oscar chasing me through the snow or rolling around the floor with me. Ahhhhh that’s love.

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Monty

My update is a couple of months late this year and now I am 7 years old. I’ve been looking after my human mum, she’s not been so good this year. I’m keeping my eye on her and snuggling up with her as much as possible. I’ve started to paw her like a cat to sit on her legs etc, it works every time. Who would have of known, I could act like a cat.

I’ve had some dodgy haircuts this year too, why is it so hard to produce the same cute hair cut. I’ve looked like a floor rug, someone clearly likes scissors and a sheep after shearing. The last cut has made my legs look longer and my body even shorter but not for the better. Paws crossed for a nice cut in 2018.

Guess what, we have moved again, this is now a permanent address, I think my human parents have a gypsy streak in them. I don’t know if I was coming or going. Finally I think they have settled down and I don’t have to deal with the previous neighbours cat crossing my garden. My current neighbours cat has more sense and avoids my garden, he knows my boundary line. However I do have a small human next door shouting doggie doggie, no!!! my name is Lottie.

The new home is cute, I don’t need a map like my Canadian home. Furthermore I don’t get the warm air heating like my Canadian home, its a metal panel fixed to the wall, I think the humans call it a rad. I did like warm air flowing through my fur, it was just like a permanent blow dry

Some of the items in this home verses the Canadian home, say for instance the shower in the U.K. is a like size of a laundry chute. Ridddddiculous. The bathroom hand basin is so small, an ideal size for a cats lick but not a deep filled bubble bath lol. My human parents are changing all those items and making great moves on creating a beautiful home.

Ive been to my human dads workplace on a few occasions and again I’m flooded with kisses and cuddles. They all want to take me home but there’s no way I’m leaving my human parents oh no. My human parents mean the world to me, nevertheless my human dad is still the soft touch in regards treats, let’s just say he’s putty in my paws every time.

I actually go to a dog sitters home when my human mum has medical appointments in London. My dog sitter is lovely and her human daughters and I’m showered with love and affection. The only problem is I won’t eat as I’m pining for my human parents. I know they are coming back for me but my anxiety gets the better of me. If only I could drink wine like humans, they always seem to be more chilled after a couple of sips.

I had better sign off now as I have to snuggle my human mum before she has another op this month. She’s a real superstar, you wouldn’t get me going under the knife 4 times just picking and chopping organs for dandelions(tumours). Them doctors keep dissecting her like a science lab class rat or a frog nowadays. She’s has scars like a patchwork doll but so so brave. I hope they take good care of her otherwise I will have to start sharping up my gnashers, enough said. (Disclaimer: I don’t condone violence)

Until next time and love to you all

Lottie. X ❤️🐾🐾

#letstalkaboutnets

Weekly Blog No 53 – Lottie’s 5th Birthday.

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A message from Lottie

I would like to say a big thank you for my birthday wishes. I had a great birthday with lots of treats and cuddles.  I thought I would give you all an update of the last 12 months. I am still very cute with big brown eyes, I haven’t grown in size nevertheless I’ve put on a little weight. This is very surprising as I’m no longer able to eat Tim Horton’s Timbits or Dairy Queen ice cream from Canada. There is hardly any drive thru’s in the UK, only McD’s and KFC both venues never succumb to my cuteness for a treat in Canada so I have no chance here in the UK. I do miss my bank visits to see K, she was extremely affectionate to me and plenty of belly rubs, incurring no extra bank charges. Oh I nearly forget the airport with my human dad, I felt like a movie star there as everyone wanted a photo of me or with me. If only I could have charged them for the privilege, I would have been able to purchase additional boxes of Timbits.

Back to my treats, I was very partial to Timbits, a small round donut, which I could easily fit into my mouth. I would peel the outer skin before attempting to eat the inside. I got this trick from my human mum, I would see her strip off the layers off biscuits or sweets etc as she ate them. I have found a perfect dog treat in the UK, it’s like a chicken drumstick chew. If my human parents fetch me one from the dog treat cupboard, I will give them a playful dance, a few cute circles, a sassy bark and a raised paw for extra measure. My human parents will always respond with rubbing of my soft coat.

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As most of you know, I have left my native land of Canada and headed to the UK. I have to say I don’t miss looking over my shoulder for predators like coyotes. Here in the UK until this present day, I have merely had black ants to deal with climbing on my coat whilst basking in the sun. It’s funny to find something smaller than me and I can remove them by rolling on back and squashing them.

Let me tell you about my dog walks, they are so much more fun as I don’t have to have on my dog lead on when I’m in a human park, as there’s no such thing as dog parks or dog licences. I can run up to dogs, sniff, waggle my tail and play chase. As for humans they offer extra petting and comments like, she’s a cute puppy. Yes I know I am small and adorable but can’t they see that I’m fully grown. What do they say “all good things come in small packages”.

The British weather, I can’t say that I’m a huge fan of the wet stuff they called rain give me snow any day. I’m like any other lady who doesn’t like to get her hair wet especially when I’m out and about checking out handsome dogs. It flattens my hair and it’s not cool when I look like a drenched rat.

Family & friends come over to visit my human parents, I love humans coming because I get oodles of attention. Ranging from cuddles, rocking, belly rubs and even kisses. I will reiterate a kiss if my belly gets rubbed as I thrive on such attention.  Even though I tend to follow my human mum around everywhere, my human dad is the soft touch in regards to treats. I simply have to rest my paws on his leg and give him my puppy eyes gaze and he just softens every time then leaps into action.

My human mum has a nickname for me is Velcro and I actually don’t know why. I think maybe she’s suggesting that I follow her everywhere and stick to her like glue. Maybe there is some truth that I do follow her everywhere but I love her and she is my best buddy. I do hate it when my human parents go out so in attempt to prevent that happening, I will shake and even vibrate. I have been known on occasions to even run and hide so they don’t leave me. In the end, what I thought was oscar winning dramatics doesn’t work nevertheless I do make them pay for it when they get home by jumping all over them until they pick me up and hug me.

My new home in the UK is smaller, not so many rooms and certainly less floors for my little legs. There is no hardwood flooring just a whole load more carpet, which is very cosy on my paws and a boundless back scratch. In the UK, there is a lot more animals on the huge picture box, you know the gadget what humans call a telly. I’m not a fan of them meerkats that are on before every episode of Coronation St, I’m likely to growl at them, freaky looking species with long tails and clothes. I would be far more entertaining walking on the cobbles and talking.

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My priority now is to look after my human mum, giving her loads of attention and snuggling into her like a fluff ball as she calls me.

Bye for now and god save the Queen.

Weekly Blog No 41 – Learning To Drop My Canadian Vocabulary  

 

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As of next week I will be setting all my technology to UK English and dropping all my z to s’s in words like realize to realise. I will be adding my u’s to words again like, colour and neighbour. I shall be pre setting this blog to post, whilst I’m still in the air traveling to London. After 6 years I’m going to have to learn to drop my Canadian vocabulary, for instance.

Canadian – British

  • Gas – Petrol
  • Sidewalk – Footpath
  • Trunk – Boot
  • Hood – Bonnet
  • Washrooms – Toilets
  • Chips – Crisps
  • Fries – Chips
  • Runners – Trainers
  • Parkade – Multi Storey Car Park
  • Fire Hall – Fire Station
  • Pants – Underwear
  • Hydro – Electrictity
  • Candy – Sweets
  • Track Pants – Joggers
  • ABM – Cashpoint
  • Thongs – Flipflops
  • College – University
  • Urgent Care – A & E
  • Lineup – Queue
  • Dish Cloth – Tea Towel
  • Sweater – Jumper
  • Yard – Garden
  •  Wallet – Purse
  • Duplex – Semi Detached House
  • Detached House – Single Family Home
  • Movie – Film
  • Zucchini – Courgette
  • Cell  Phone – Mobile Phone
  • Bangs – Fringe
  • Soccer – Football
  • Awesome – Great
  • Faucets – Taps
  • Drapes – Curtains
  • Elevator – Lift
  • Whiteout – Tipex
  • Bandaid – Plaster
  • Main Floor – Ground Floor
  • Electrical Outlet – Socket
  • Stove – Cooker
  • Jelly – Jam
  • Cookie – Biscuit
  • Soda – Pop
  • Garbage – Rubbish
  • Dumpster – Skip
  • Mall – Shopping Centre
  • Bar – Pub

Now I will have to remember not to turn right on a red light, not to walk to the mail box to collect my mail and when ordering drinks there is no such thing as a double double.  It’s going to take some adjustment and only time will tell.

Weekly Blog No 40 – Preparation for International Move 

International moving is a whole new learning experience, it can be stressful, joyful and expensive all at the same time.  This is our fourth international move. UK to Canada, Canada to UK, UK to Canada and finally Canada to UK. Some might even call us the boomerang Brits.

First you have to make the decision to move, people are moving everyday for different reasons, it can for family, employment, a change of lifestyle or seeking a new adventure. The move can be considered as stressful or a walk in the park but it’s down to the preparation. One thing I have personally learnt from the process is that there is never enough hours in the day. Ideally a 30hr day would be perfect rather the usual 24hr day. Here are some of the things I’ve had to consider.

Furniture & Personal Possessions

 Photo from the sale brochure of my home

Shipping can be very expensive and you have to make the decision, is it really worth all the cost. I have experience with 20ft and 40ft containers, however this time as I chose to do groupage (shared container) to keep costs down. Due to my own personal experience, Canadian furniture is to big for British dwellings, therefore I made the decision to sell most of our items. British furniture is cheaper than Canadian and more suitable for British properties. Although I did have beautiful pieces I’m able to let it go to keep costs to a minimum as I do have wonderful memories.

Live Stock (Also known as Lottie aka Velcro)

 

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This little bundle of cuteness also needs preparation. There are hundreds of people flying live stock and the cost is incredible.  You have to use a pet agent to fly with certain airlines and I have used the same company and airline 3 times. In order to fly Lottie into the UK you have to have a microchip, than rabies injection and tapeworm all within the proper time scales. If you follow the correct procedure you can avoid quarantine in the UK for 6 months.  Lotiie will be on the same flight as us, however she will be below our feet in the hold hopefully having a fabulous snooze.

Cars

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 We have manage to sell one car to our friends, however one week to go we are still are stuck with our biggest four wheel investment. Friends have offered to sell it on our behalf but cars are just not selling in the downturn. We have a plan B to sell it back to the garage and guess who has the biggest smile, not us.  We can walk away bearing no more cost and cutting all ties.

The Cancer Patient 

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I’m still recovering from spine surgery, earliest indications are that I’m doing well. Hopefully the spine specialist will have the same opinion this week when I see him on my post surgery appointments. My cancer symptoms are causing me horrendous problems, therefore I’m lucky to have my husband around. My family physician has given me a prescription to aid me through the flight. I have my cancer treatment this week so I have 28 days to get my next treatment in place.

Saying goodbye to my family physician was hard, I know I have mentioned him in my blog before but he really was a very compassionate person. The respect was mutual and I hope that I make the same relationship with my new GP. Thank you again Dr K.

I do believe I’m armed with all my medical notes and discs in preparation for the UK medical journey. The word nervous is not usually in my vocabulary but its rearing its ugly head. I’m nervous to be honest due to experience, nevertheless I’m up for the challenge.

Saying Goodbye 

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We have had a stream of visitors (friends) coming into say goodbye. There has been hugs and tears, yet I haven’t allowed myself to go there yet. If I do, I may never stop and I won’t be able to deal with the task in hand. Come next Saturday morning when there is nothing else to do, I will have tissues close by as I know that’s when it’s going to hit me.

My next blog will be in the UK, so this is my last Canadian blog. Goodbye Canada.

Weekly Blog No 39 – Canada to UK

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After recent events, my husband and I have decided to return to the UK.  I know that family & friends are excited  about our return, however we have many friends here in Canada that are saddened by our news. If you had asked me 9 weeks ago if I would return to the UK, I would have said no and laughed at you. Life has a way changing the direction you were travelling, some people don’t adapt to change nevertheless I like change. I’m a big believer of fate and this is one of those incidents that I think fate is involved 

Are we sad to leave Canada.

Yes, there is so much we love about Canadian life and to be honest there’s too many to list. I’m sure Canadian culture will play a big part in our lives in the future, from barbecuing to Canada Day. How could you possibly forget Canadian culture after living here for 6 years. Every international sporting event, I will be cheering both sides of the pond.

Are we looking forward to returning to the UK.

Yes we are, to be nearer to family and friends is huge, however we will miss our friends here who have become our Canadian family. They have been my emotional support since my cancer diagnosis and that is a gift to never be forgotten.

I do believe my life will be different in the UK, I feel like I’m just existing here from one appointment to another. In the UK, I will have more people who will be able to see me during working hours and even attend appointments with me on occasions. Should a miracle happen and my symptoms improve, I could maybe be able to return to work on a part-time basis, if not there is more opportunity for me to do activities to fulfil my time. I won’t have to rely on a car to go everywhere as most places will be within walking distance or public transport.

What are we both most excited about.

Family & friends of course, spending quality time together enjoying what the UK has to offer.  Travel was an enormous part of life before leaving for Canada, it was a case of people asking us, where are you going too now. Airlines in the UK, are considerably cheaper, offering more destinations making travel  more attractive. Although I could provide an itemised list, I would be here for hours.

Are there any concerns about returning to the UK.

Yes and no, health care is different in the UK, therefore it can be wonderful and frustrating at the same time.

What are we going to miss from Canada

I don’t think my UK bank account manager will be hugging me or asking if Lottie(dog) can come to our next appointment.

Beautiful scenery & open, clean and uncongested roads.
The phase “Have a good day”.

Speedy service everywhere.

Drive thru’s.

My Family Physician – I’m going to pack him into my suitcase, he doesn’t know that just yet.

Open plan houses, basement living,  his & her washhand basins, more than one washroom and upstairs laundry.

Lack of rain and blue skies.

Cheap gasoline/petrol.

More flexible business hours, for health care, shopping and banking.

Summary 

There are pros and cons to every country and I’m ready to deal with whatever is thrown at us.

Weekly Blog No 33 – British Slang 

I have been in Canada 6 years, yet I haven’t lost my British slang. In fact I have given a few Canadians a whole new dictionary of words. Being a Brit in Canada, it took a while just getting around the Canadian vocabulary so I can only imagine how Canadians seem to be confused with our slang words.

I thought I would provide a list of words and there meanings.

  1. Shambles – Plan gone wrong
  2. Loo – Toilet
  3. Do – Party
  4. Plastered – Drunk
  5. Her’s majesty pleasure – Prison
  6. Up the duff – Pregnant
  7. Nosh – Food
  8. Bees and Knees – Awesome
  9. Kip – Sleep
  10. Gutted – Devastated
  11. Starkers – Completely naked
  12. Bottle – Courage
  13. Doddle – Easy
  14. Ta – Thanks
  15. Off your trolley – Nuts, crazy or mad
  16. Posh – High class
  17. Full of beans – Lots of energy
  18. Dodgy – Not to be trusted
  19. Give us a bell – Call me
  20. A flick – A movie 
  21. Pins – Legs 
  22. Afters – Dessert
  23. Moggy – Cat
  24. Mucker – Pal
  25. Parky – Chilly 
  26. Telly – Television
  27. Tea – Dinner
  28. Pint – Beer
  29. Fit – Hot looking person
  30. Dogs breakfast – A mess 

There is hundreds of words, far to many to list, however I would love to know your thoughts. 

 

Weekly Blog No 14 – Landscaping

This week I thought I would share with you a project that my husband & I have been working on for the last few months. We have been lucky to endure some great weather to complete the hard landscaping, which we assumed was beyond our expectations for this year. I can only take credit for the landscape design to the yard, however my husband has done all the hard labour with some input from neighbours & friends on certain tasks.

In Canada, a yard/garden are pretty similar in design consisting of a deck, some planting and lawn area. Brits love a yard/garden to contain a patio area, lots of planting and a lawn area. Canada is the country of snow and freezing temperatures so when designing a yard/garden this has to be considered. Grass is only green for about 3 – 4 months before turning brown and laying underneath snow.

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The yard/garden before the work commenced.

Firstly we wanted a boundary fence to divide us between our neighbours and provide a screen of privacy. When this was installed I was able to give more thought to the overall landscape design. I was able to determine the position of sun throughout the day and also the potential shaded areas within the yard/garden. We decided to include a deck in the design even though the area is in the shade all day. We shall build the deck next year, as it adds value to a property in Canada and is a selling feature.

 

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The boundary fence in situ.

We wanted to add some Englishness into the design by inserting a patio area for entertaining. Therefore we used hard landscaping for the following purposes a bbq, table & chairs, comfortable seating and a fire pit for late nights. I actually designed the yard/garden around this area as this was going to be my most utilized space. I didn’t want the typical curves in the design but I did want to create some straight lines to dovetail the architecture of our house. As you will see from the photo below I have managed to design a patio area for our requirement, a lawn area, planting beds, proposed shed area and finally a proposed sun lounger area.

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The yard/garden starting to take shape

This area I am going to put raised planters/boxes along the fence line to grow vegetables

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My husband is completing the pavers around the planting areas and in the sun lounger area. We have more work to do and will complete the rest next year as we are satisfied with our achievements this year. We have to buy some additional yard/garden furniture to full the space as well.

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