We are just back from a winter holiday in Dorset. Trudi and I had a lovely time chasing around beaches and the local area. It was our mission to get Sr Jennifer and Liz out into the fresh air as often as we could - and we did pretty well.
Here's a slideshow of some of our walks
As nice as the holidays are, it's always good to come home again, and catch up with our friends. We've noticed that we don't get quite so many treats on holiday as we get back at St Mary's. There are always people at the Home who we can guilt into giving us a bit of biscuit or a dog treat.
Goodness, where has the Autumn gone? It's been a whirlwind of activity - trips out, holidays, investigating the rabbits and deer in Richmond Park and keeping everyone here entertained. Not to mention we had our long awaited CQC Inspection - so I had to be on best behaviour for that!
We are now in December and we have lots of local schools and choirs coming into the Home to sing Christmas carols for us - which is wonderful. Naturally, I'm a bit of a super-star myself. All the children pat me as they file in and out of the Home.
What's less enjoyable is the weather. When it's been raining, being a natural blonde, I tend to get a bit muddy around the paws and tummy when I've been out for a walk.
How many adoring women does it take to get me clean...?
More than you might think!
Now, where did I hide that mince pie...?
We had an unusual event last week – a Wedding in our chapel. It’s not often we get a wedding, the last one we had was for Jane Wright our Activities Coordinator. Here I am, having just inspected the flowers, which I thought looked quite lovely. I set them off nicely!
This week we have our Holiday at Home Week – 5 full days of activities, singing, dancing and games, culminating with St Margaret’s Day on Saturday 20th July – with mass at 11.00am and a BBQ in the garden afterwards.
I’ve got a busy week ahead of me – and of course I always superintend the teas and meals in the garden. Trudie and I are essential when it comes to clearing up left over food in the garden, making sure there is nothing left about to attract the foxes!
I’ll post more pictures of the week’s activities as we go along. Bye for now….
Northumberland beaches and castles
Thank you Elia for filling in. Normal service can now resume; Trudi and I are back from our holiday with Sr Jennifer and Liz.
We were up in Northumberland – almost in Scotland – for a week. It was a long drive up in the rain, not much fun, but when we found the cottage, we were delighted to see a nice big garden for us to run about in. We soon made ourselves at home. There were lots of pheasants around, who popped their heads round the gate, but they weren’t quite so keen when I bounded up to them to welcome them into the garden. Can’t think why.
The Northumberland coast has the most brilliant beaches, and we all enjoyed our walks on them.
Our local beach was Spittal, which had lovely views of Berwick on Tweed, and we loved Bamburgh beach and castle, Seahouses and Beadnell.
Lots of room for me to run about – and I even went paddling.
Long walks necessitate refreshment – here are Trudi and I waiting patiently for our cappuccino and cake; not sure I enjoyed the coffee but the cake was great!
Hah! At last I get to take over the blog….. Bartie and Trudi are off on holiday this week in Northumberland.
Some people reading this may be surprised that there is a (rather superior) cat in the Home. The other two make such a fuss – running around everywhere and lying on all the sofas and chairs. I am rather more selective about who I greet and where I spend my time.
There is a very comfortable shelf above a radiator in the Chapel, where I can be found saying the office with the Sisters, especially in the winter months. I find I can concentrate better if I close my eyes during chapel services….
In the afternoons I help Liz relax, by making her sit down with a cup of tea, so that I can sit on her lap and be stroked. On the afternoons when she is working, then I have to go into the office and see if anyone there will pay me some attention.
Sisters Ann-Verena and Jane Olive can usually be relied on to give me a few treats, as they come out of chapel – and a bit of a scritch behind my ears.
I keep a very close eye on our other pets, the fish. Sadly both tanks have lids on them, so I’m unable to play with the fish in the manner I prefer. Ah well, maybe one day Les will forget to put the lid back on….
A VERY Happy Easter to you all!
I hope everyone kept a good Lent and were able to enjoy the festivities over Easter. We were blessed with glorious weather – so much so Jane Wright and Sr Jennifer had to keep on moving the eggs for the Easter Egg Hunt – to stop them melting in the bright sunshine.
I found one of the eggs, and got excited as Sr Jennifer opened it – but unfortunately she didn’t give me any. Apparently it’s bad for me. Hurumph!
As you can see from the photo, I was all dressed for the occasion as the Easter Bunny – with ears. Sr Jennifer thought I looked a bit like a sheep. Cheek! Trudi was just thankful Jan only had one set of bunny ears on her.
This spring weather has been very welcome. Richmond Park is full of interesting smells and animals. I’ve been trying to make friends with the rabbits and deer – but they keep running off when I bound up to say good morning.
I'm looking forward to May - 6th May will be my 6th birthday. I'm expecting presents!
January and February have whizzed by. I’ve been occupied with overseeing the refurbishments we’ve been doing to some of our rooms. My good friends Fred, Les, Michael, Alan, Andy and Josh have been very busy getting this done – but they couldn’t have managed without my help. Muddy footprints are invaluable for showing up leaks in bathrooms and areas of new flooring that need a bit of a sweep!
February has proved a bit of a surprise with some lovely, if rather unseasonable, warm and sunny weather. Trudi and I have made the most of it with longs walks - and Sister Jennifer made the most of it by giving me a bath. I was not amused.
Half term week meant that we had a few younger visitors at the home, here I am having a cuddle with Anna-Lucia, Vijay’s daughter, and Carmen’s granddaughter.
March sees the beginning of Lent, with our Pop-up Pancake Sale on Tuesday 5th March. Trudi and I can’t decide what we’re going to give up for Lent. Sister Jennifer is suggesting biscuits at coffee time, but we hardly get any of those, so I’m not convinced…….
Not looking forward to today. Sr Jennifer and Liz are taking me back to the vet, to look at my eye. I’ll be in need of LOTS of cuddles and treats when I get back.
Still, tomorrow is Shrove Tuesday – and that means pancakes – so things aren’t all bad!
Trudi and I are getting very excited. The Home has been bristling with school choirs, all sorts of activities and parties for the past few weeks. Not only are we in the run up to Christmas, but we’ve also been celebrating Liz’s 60th Birthday.
There have been many occasions when we have been essential to the celebrations, particularly in hoovering up the crumbs left from mince pie baking, and Liz’s party on Friday 7th December. The food provided by our talented staff for the party was excellent and, as we did some quality control tasting, we can confirm this!
Sr Jennifer has been much occupied with buying presents – for all the residents, the staff and our wonderful volunteers. Not sure who's going to get these glasses... Trudie, Elia and I are just hoping that we haven’t been forgotten – hint, hint!
Also, knowing how exemplary our behaviour has been the past year (ignoring the odd roll in mud and puddles) we certainly hope that Father Christmas might visit us too. If he’s checked his list twice – we should be on the NICE list!
Christmas is always fun at the Home, and we will get the opportunity to see many of the friends and relatives of our family here over the next few weeks.
If we don’t see you in ‘person’ – Trudie, Elia and I wish you all a VERY HAPPY CHRISTMAS
My very busy summer.
The hot weather certainly got to me and Trudie, and we enjoyed the impromptu baths that Sr Jennifer prepared for us. I also went paddling in any water I could find during our regular walks in Richmond Park and Chiswick House – much to the surprise of the ducks.
Last Saturday saw me joining in all the fun of the Staff Family Day. I was invaluable in helping with the games, chasing balls and entertaining all the children.
Fun & Games.
Near the end of June, we went on a holiday to Norfolk. We were able to go on lots of walks as the beach was practically on our doorstep but unfortunately, Trudi was feeling ill so we decided to come back early. She is fine again now so she was able to join in on all the fun during the ‘Holiday at Home’ week. It was in the theme of animals and one day there was an obstacle course in the garden, Liz was dressed up in a lion costume with some of the other staff members dressed in different animal costumes for the race. I couldn’t miss out on this so I decided to join in on the race (I might have knocked a few cones!). I hope that you all have a great summer.
"My friend Trudi and I are the residing dogs at St. Mary's Convent and Nursing Home. We bring joy to the home and the residents. Follow our tales along the way!"