Saturday, 24 September 2011

Life in the madhouse. Effectively.

I haven't blogged for ages, and I miss it. But I've been so busy!

Shelagh is here. Tricia has gone. Both really love the house and the area; it is such fun showing my lovely visitors round my new county, and learning a great deal about it for myself, but my, it's hectic too! While there was the three of us together, we crammed a lot into the few days before Tricia went off to visit other friends and family; steam train, Exmoor off-road excursion, shopping, sightseeing, eating, and laughing a great deal.

We were driven around some wild and barely-accessible areas of Exmoor by a chap with a very loud voice, whose favourite word was "effectively". He sprinkled each sentence liberally with this word, and after three hours, having lost count of how many times "effectively" was bellowed, we tottered home, our deafened ears bleeding, barely able to assimilate the lovely sights we had seen for the force of the commentary that accompanied them.

CLICK here for information about this rarity!

A fifth cat has upset the fragile equilibrium of the menagerie, and pet behaviour/bodily functions seem to feature quite frequently. You don't need the details. It's settling down, sort of, and no one has been bitten or scratched, but they all have their moments. Shelagh described it as (effectively) a madhouse this morning, and she was right.

Catkin spends much of her time upstairs, although her hearty appetite would suggest that (effectively) she isn't too upset by this. She has a Lady Bracknell look about her, mostly of disapproval, and the boys, always easily alarmed, can be cowed by a glance.

Millie's fascination for frogs is lessening, but we're not free of it yet. Sitting at my desk this morning, I could hear a rustling sound beside me, and squinting downwards, I spotted this little chap trying to hide behind a pile of papers. He was very happy to be rescued from a carpeted sitting room and returned to the pond.

The builders are here, my roof is now winter-ready, the electrics have been sorted out, and the stone wall in the sitting room, with its oh-so-wrong pointing has been rendered in the traditional style, and looks infinitely better as a result. It will be painted when dry, and I can get some of my pictures up, when it may start to feel more like home (effectively), and less like a WIP.

Next week, the madhouse will consist only of me, the cats and the dogs. And perhaps a frog.


Bow Street Flowers said...

Really? Just you and the animals? Time for me to visit! If only I weren't across the pond and working so much!

judy in ky said...

It looks to my American eyes as if you live in a fairyland, with magical shaggy creatures and castles on the hills. Of course, reality sets in with necessary bits of electricity and roofing. I wish the cats could get be happy and serene... guess it will just take a bit of time.

Von said...

I so know that cat expression!!! Effectively! Getting settled is a good feeling , yes?

HAZEL said...

I thought I rather liked your stone wall...but seeing it rendered I think you absolutely did the right thing. It looks fabulous.

Ginnie said...

Your scenery (and photography of) is stunning! So wonderful to see, and so different from where I live in mostly flat Illinois.

the veg artist said...

The rendering is so effective! I'm sure the little ones will settle down once it's back to just you and them, with no builders for a while, and settled winter days in front of the log burner. You do seem to have been making the most of the last few weeks. Are you on something? What happened to living in the slow lane?

Chesley said...

Just quick words of advice for cat introductions.
I brought in fourth and fifth ones last December,
I kept them in the guest room with their own litter pan, food, and water for around two weeks. Then, I did slow introductions with everyone eating together but limited opportunities to fail (fight). Also I used a plug in diffuser of synthetic cat pheromones called Feliway- don't know if it is available in England- for four months or so. We have occasional spats but no inappropriate elimination.
And I can't resist; effectively.

Diane said...

Wow - you have been busy. Time to put your feet up in front of an autumn fire, methinks. Hope all the small members of the family settle down soon.

MTVA said...

Perhaps the combination of new house, noisy workmen, visitors AND the new kitty are just all combining to give you * effectively * a rowdy bunch of upset week sounds like a lovely back to normal week, just what those beleagured kittys need!

Toffeeapple said...

Slow down, you are going too fast! Gorgeous pictures of a beautiful county.
Your house is looking better by the minute, I'm hoping for lots of pictures when it has been finished.
I hope the feline situation soon resolves itself.

Frances said...

Great photos. Good to have you back! The fireplace and rendered wall look good. I can see why the boys are scared of catkin, she looks quite fearsome!

Anonymous said...

Hi - I am what is known as a lurker from Canada who seldom comments. I enjoy your posts, eapecially the ones about the cats & dogs. Catkin looks like she is now the "queen" of upstairs/downstairs.

Have you thought of getting cat #6 ( or would that be too overwhelming for the others, especially Flossie and Tosca)?. Catkin is the odd-cat out as the others have all paired off.

Prince Edward Island

Susan said...

please ? please ? please ? write a book.

We love your writing style + your keen eye (& ear). We LOVE, love, loved - the update - carry on xoxoxo

over n' out, les Gang

ps I could illustrate the book ? eh ???? chapter heading line art sketches ???

Doohie said...

Well, effectively - - - :-)
Catkin looks as though she has made herself right at home.

Anonymous said...

My goodness, there are so many wonderful things in your post, I could write a book-length comment!! It all looks fabulous, and makes me want to visit NOw ... alas not a possibility at the moment! Love the scenery, the wall, the hidden away electrics ..... and the little frog! I can even tolerate Catkin! Love from bith of us x

Marcheline said...

This is, EFFECTIVELY, one of the best posts you've ever done. Love the highland coos, love the frog, love the arched doorway, love everything.

P.S. Don't paint the stone wall!

Anonymous said...

Lady Bracknall look-perfect description! Your photographs are excellent,almost like being there.

Lucille said...

So glad to have a round up of events and developments. One of my nearest and dearest got stuck on 'essentially' for a long time. V. annoying but at least I wasn't stuck for three solid hours with it.

Pam said...

I've not heard so much 'effectively' and 'essentially' used as much down here in the Southern Hemisphere, but 'absolutely' is just starting to fade out in answer to everything agreeable.
Love the rendering on your fireplace -looks great!

flwrjane said...

Wow you have been busy and NO do not get a 6th cat.

There will never be room for us to visit then. Barely room for you.

It all looks to be a lovely madhouse.

xo jane

Alicia said...


Planet Penny said...

Wow! it's all coming along very nicely, and I do see what you mean about Lady Bracknell!

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