Big Decisions, Crufts and Ruff Guides!

Irony of Making Decisions

It’s one of those funny things isn’t it – make a big decision and then irony of ironies, something challenges it.

A few weeks ago I was so up to my eyeballs that I turned off all notifications on Facebook groups.  Every now and again I check them all at the same time, and it has saved me loads of time.

But I then had to face facts that where I thought I was just going to take a few months off paid blogging work, I needed much longer.  So one day I took the big step of removing myself from the PR lists that I’d signed up to, and making an automatic reply that I could send back on any offers.  Such a shame, as I don’t choose many, and the few I do have been fun.  But the stress of then trying to fit in the review just isn’t worth it, unless I write a pants one on the way home in the car!

But then what happened.  FIVE minutes later!

I got invited to something I’d ALWAYS wanted to go to.


Crufts 2014

It might sound daft to a non-dog lover, but I’ve always wanted to go and I knew that the kids would get really inspired by seeing the shows, agility and obedience.

Plus I was invited by the one organisation that I will still be working for this year as an ambassador – the Forestry Commission.

Paws Outdoors

So the point to the trip was that the Kennel Club and the Forestry Commission signed a new agreement at Crufts.  The Club will encourage/remind it’s owners to be thoughtful when walking their dogs.  The commission is encouraging families to include their doggie friends with them on their walks.  (It’s more complicated than that, but I thought you might like the simple version!).

The Forestry Commission have created a ‘Ruff Guide‘ with tips on the best forests to go to with dogs, special activities being put on for dog owners, and tips on how to take care of our dogs whilst we are out.  I love taking the whole family to Wendover Woods, our local FC forest, so I think it is great to encourage more people to go walking with their dogs.

There is something special about a walk when we all go together – maybe because dogs remind us of the simple enjoyment of being in the woods, smelling the fresh air and running around.

The Problem


There we were at Crufts at their wonderful ‘Discover Dogs’ section, surrounded by every make of dog.

And then the kids found the Lowchen pen ….

Kids and Lowchens

Look at the happy smile on Curly Headed Boy’s face, and the tiny little thing that Little Dimples has found quietly sitting in the corner …

Lowchens and children


And then they put the little one in my lap …… the poor Northern Hairy One was doomed.

Family dogs

So Dudley the labradoodle (the best, but most moulting dog in the world) has now got a little sister; which he is secretly quite chuffed about.

The two Norwegian Forest Cats, who are twice the size of her, have got their heads around it.

Lowchen and young children

And now the kids have someone to cuddle when they need a bit of chill time or are sick.


Lowchens and kids

Just look at those two!

I can’t wait to take her to Wendover with Dudley and let her experience the excitement of the woods.  Her little tail is wagging now when we walk her, although she can be a bit scared.  But soon she is going to become a brave adventurer like the translation of her name suggests; ‘Lion Dog’! (Yes, I know this is a crazy name for the smallest dog known to mankind!).

Many thanks to the Forestry Commission for sending us to Crufts.  I hope that any of you who have been nervous of taking your dogs out with you, will check out the Ruff Guide and take them with you next time!

By the way, if you think that your dog could be a star, there is a competition to put them forward as the face of the new 2014 Walkies campaign with the FC.


Ten Tips On How To Take Care Of Yourself!

I’ve been wondering what to talk about with the gorgeous Danny Smith on his drive time show to Radio Verulam for a couple of days.

Should it be my improvement with Fibromyalgia, should it be that the minute the sun comes out we panic about bikini’s or should it be more relationship stuff?

But then I realised it’s all about something simple.

Something so simple that we are rubbish at it.


Having Fibromyalgia has been my teacher in how to take care of myself.  So I’m not that bright either – it took a chronic pain . . . → Read More: Ten Tips On How To Take Care Of Yourself!

Top 3 Tips For Getting And Keeping Relationship

Is it possible to have romance and kids?

I was chatting with the gorgeous Danny Smith online about relationships the other day, so we thought we’d talk about it on his drive time radio show on Radio Verulam.

Missed us?  You can listen in here (5.30-6pm).

Now I’ve talked about relationships LOADS at times on this blog.  But I was thinking, what are the Top 3 tips for finding and keeping a relationship?  Here is what I came up with:


1) Love Yourself And Be Clear On What You Deserve

Oh I know it’s cliched.  But you need to know why you are wonderful. . . . → Read More: Top 3 Tips For Getting And Keeping Relationship

Comparison – helpful motivation or the source of pain?

I was chatting to the lovely Danny Smith from West Herts Drivetime on Radio Verulam today about New years and comparisons ….. (If you fancy listening to us, you can do so here, but only for the next week).

Life Check

Cup Of Tea and a chat is good for the soul

This is the time of year when people are looking at their lives and thinking of what they want for the new year.

Personally I hate new years resolutions – they don’t work.  It’s too cold and people are too tired to maintain them.  Spring and September is the . . . → Read More: Comparison – helpful motivation or the source of pain?

My house’s journey in 2013 – from salon to normality

Loads of people do reviews of their life for the previous year, I’m going to do a review of my house’s life last year.

For the first quarter of the year I saw lots of my house because I was still getting to grips with my Fibromyalgia - I basically needed a jolly good rest.  Gradually it brought me the healing I needed and I started to recover.

Then suddenly at the end of May we had a meeting with my friend and hair dresser Tony and a plan I’d had for over 10yrs suddenly burst into life.

. . . → Read More: My house’s journey in 2013 – from salon to normality

Problem Corner – Inappropriate relationships No2

Agony Aunt for Mums

Agony Aunt for Mums

I’ve had a long email from a wife asking for some more help having read my previous post about ‘Inappropriate Relationships’.

My answer is basically ‘Yes’ that woman is a wrong un, but I thought I’d include the whole email with my comments all the way through in red to help guys understand the general nuance when dealing with situations like this:

Email 1

I came across your website when looking for information on cross sex relationships as my partner of 25 years has recently struck . . . → Read More: Problem Corner – Inappropriate relationships No2

My Top 10 Tips for Making Sure You Are Safe And Sound In 2014

Is it possible to have romance and kids?

A hug

So for this months chat with Danny Smith at Radio Verulam on his Drivetime show, I thought we’d talk about ways to help you feel more secure in 2014.

(If you fancy listening to us, you can for ONE week only here, I’m at 5.30-6pm).

Christmas is a very stressful time that can make us feel insecure.  Plus, although it seems as though the recession is turning around, I think it might take a bit longer to kick in for some parts of the country than others.

Lots of things make us feel secure: friendships, relationships, health, . . . → Read More: My Top 10 Tips for Making Sure You Are Safe And Sound In 2014

Sticks and magic

It’s been tough, at times over the past few months.  I’ve been so busy that I was surprised and really chuffed to be asked to remain as an ambassador for the Forestry Commission (which means I get a membership to Wendover woods).

They sent us a lovely pack with a Stick Man book and a few other goodies, which as the kids already love that book, has gone to my salon for the kids there to enjoy on Mummy Mondays.  Julia Donaldson has teamed up with the FC to produce a range of events and activities to tie in with the character . . . → Read More: Sticks and magic

I Love Awards

Everyone is fab

I love awards – some people are OK knowing that they are fab, but I must admit I like to be told!  I’m much better than I was when I was younger, and I can do some self-patting on the back now; which is healthy I think.  But to get an award is lovely.

We had a tough week at the salon this week; we made some awfully difficult decisions now that we know more about our market and restructured letting 5 people go and bringing 1 person in.  The team has really come together since then and we are really . . . → Read More: I Love Awards

Will we make it ‘Back to the moon for good’?

Back to the moon for good

At the end of the last half-term we took a very excited Curly Headed Boy (nearly 8) and Little Dimples (3.5) to the National Space Centre in Leicester for the first time for the launch of ‘Back to the moon for good’.

Honestly I had absolutely no idea what on earth the launch was about!  But I’d wanted to go to the space centre for years, so when they contacted us to go and have a look we jumped at the chance.

Some people suggested that possibly the kids were still a little too young for it all.


Did they like it?

When . . . → Read More: Will we make it ‘Back to the moon for good’?