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Taking stock: a ‘what I’m up to in my absence’ meme

Posted by on Wednesday 28 August 2013 in meta | 4 comments

Inspired by Lynsey.

(For those not following me on Twitter, a few bits of news might be pertinent for understanding some of these. Firstly, our lovely old man-cat Boron died in June, which was sad but expected, and we got three new rescue kittens at the end of July – Matilda, Kaufman and Strange. They were 18weeks-ish old when we got them so they’re just under 6months old now so they’re hardly little kittens any more but they’re still very playful and very amusing. Second, I left my job at the theatre [teaching drama] in July – it was officially only a few hours a week but it took up considerably more time than that, both at the theatre and at home, and was crowding out my time & energy for other things — fun stuff and other work stuff. I’m now trying to decide what’s next.)


Making: a couple of blankets for the kittens – Tilda particularly like kneading blankets so I’m making some tiny ones for their beds. Strange is showcasing the first one above – it was very much a quicky (mostly made in a few hours while chatting and no blocking, hence the wiggly sides), made from leftover yarn
Cooking: with stuff from the freezer – there isn’t enough room for ice cream so we need to clear some space!
Drinking: too much tea but also water through a straw – I’ve discovered I drink far more water if I use a straw
Reading: after re-reading a few fiction favourites recently, I’m currently reading some books about treating anxiety and “In Tearing Haste: Letters Between Deborah Devonshire and Patrick Leigh Fermor” – it’s surprisingly endearing (all from the library).
Wanting: um, surprisingly very little at the moment.
Looking: at the animals dotted around the room – we’ve just given them their spot-on flea treatment (the kittens for the first time with us) and they’re giving us the stink eye back!
Playing: I played old school Tropico while I was ill after finishing drama (my usual post-production slump) but I think I’m done with it for now
Wasting: the last few weeks of summer in the garden – I had a really good handle on it until my crazy busy fortnight in July but it got overgrown while I was busy and now I have little enthusiasm for reining in the annuals. I’ll deal with the shrubs and perennials when the annuals die back.
Sewing: an embroidery of some tomato plants that I started back when my now triffid-like tomato plants were tiny seedlings – sewing has taken a backseat to crochet in the last few months but I think it’s very nearly finished
Wishing: for those around me to have a better next few months than the last few
Enjoying: having a little breather between commitments
Waiting: for my pottery and sewing courses to start in September
Liking: watching the kittens exploring the garden. I thought they’d go off on big adventures in the woods straight away but in their fortnight as inside/outside cats, they’ve mainly stayed in the garden — hiding behind big courgette leaves or amongst the strawberry plants to jump out on a passing sibling, bouncing between the different levels like it’s one big cat tree, and in Kaufman’s case, watching Chicken-TV from on top of the run.
Wondering: what I’ll be doing a year from now. So many possibilities!
Loving: how well our old Carla-cat and Lily-dog have coped with the new arrivals – there were a few awkward days but by and large, everyone has slotted together wonderfully. The picture below was taken at the weekend, a month after the kittens moved in – it’s Carla, Lily and Strange. Strange was the hardest to integrate – Lily would ignore the others but try to chase Strange and Strange hissed at Carla whenever they bumped into each other. As you can see, they got over the initial grumpiness. (Kaufman loves Lily the most though: he’s always going up to her for headrubs and tries to sleep next to her whenever she’ll let him. He even tried to feed from her once, which confused Lily no end!)


Hoping: Lily-dog will sleep tonight – she’s had a few bad nights this week (not uncommon in older dogs) and that’s meant I’ve had a few bad nights too. I was wandering around the garden with her at 2:30am this morning and it was probably nearer 5 before I got to sleep for the first time — and that was on the sofa in the office
Marvelling: at how organised and on top of things I seem to be at the moment – it’s a new thing! I’m not expecting it to last (especially if I remain sleep deprived) but I’m enjoying it in the meantime!
Needing: a few hours more sleep! Also, to do my daily chicken chores and get some work done.
Smelling: … animals smells. The flea stuff on the back of their necks, the litter tray… nice!
Hearing: the chickens clucking and next door’s little dog whining – because I just took the latter into her garden for a wee, which excited both her and our chickens!
Wearing: a boring black tshirt because due to the inclement weather over the last few years, about 90% of my tops have long or three-quarter length sleeves and I have a dearth of nice short sleeved shirts for actually warm days – this is one I use for my backstage “blacks”
Noticing: the timing of our local fruit this year- the cherry plums are late (and very sparse) and the blackberries are early. (Also, like Lynsey, I’ve noticed a lot of butterflies around this year, and lots of bees as well. I’d like to think I’ve made a more wildlife friendly garden and this is my reward but I think it’s just a coincidence!)
Bookmarking: lots of things on Pinterest and Ravelry, which has the unfortunate side effect of making me constantly want to do the next project rather than the one I’m currently working on. Also lots of things which may or may not be useful depending on which of the million paths I choose to pursue over the next few months.
Opening: all the doors and windows at all times – making the most of the weather before autumn kicks in and to make up for the stifling days during the last weeks of the heatwave, when we had to keep everywhere closed up to prevent the kittens escaping.
Giggling: at finding kitten teeth marks in odd things
Knowing: very little but
Thinking: lots of things!
Feeling: momentarily tired but content


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  1. Hazel

    I’m sorry to hear about Boron. He looked just like my old cat, Merlin. Sounds as though he had one happy retirement though.

    Good to hear from you.

  2. Lynsey @ swirlyarts

    I’m liking the tip on using a straw to drink more water – I may well copy it as I need to drink more water and less Pepsi Max! The kittens are gorgeous :)

  3. PipneyJane

    Welcome back! You’ve been missed.

    So sorry to hear about Boron. Even when you’re expecting the inevitible to happen, it doesn’t lessen the pain.

    I’m glad the new kittens are settling in well.

    – Pam

  4. Mo

    How nice to find such a comprehensive post when I’m trying to catch up on my blog reading! :)

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