Last time I brushed my dogs’ teeth, I had an unpleasant surprise: Jeffie’s toothbrush had stopped working. Sid’s toothbrush (which is the same make and quite a lot older) still works, but Jeffie’s does not.

I was quite annoyed. These are disposable electric toothbrushes, ideal for the dogs, but actually made for children so the bristle part is nice and soft and small and easy to get into those narrow dog mouths to polish up the pearlies. Unfortunately, they are disposable, so I can’t replace the battery.

I’m thinking of getting them a cheap rechargeable model which is more environmentally friendly, but we’re not sure how they’d react to a sonic version and it can be difficult to find anything else these days. So, when we went shopping, I wandered into the toothbrush aisle to look for a replacement and that’s where OH found me when he came to join me. I was trying to choose between two children’s battery-powered toothbrushes on the bottom shelf (which naturally meant that OH couldn’t really see them properly) and I was describing them to him.

Me: “This one looks alright, but it’s pink!”

OH: “Okaaaay … !”

Me: “Or there’s this one. Oh look! You get stickers with it, and he could have his name on it!”

OH: “Get him that one!”

Me: “But the pink one is cheaper … ”

OH: “Get him the one with the stickers!”

Me: “Yeah, but .. Oh dear. The pink one is a Hello Kitty toothbrush”

OH (in derisive tones) “Hello Kitty? Get him the sticker one!”

Me: “Mmm … No. The ‘Hello Kitty’ is in the sale – it’s nearly £2 cheaper! And it takes ordinary batteries! He’ll have to have that one.”

OH: “I’ll tell him! I’ll tell him he could have had one with his name on!”

Me: “Don’t be mean!”

OH: “But it’s pink! He’ll have a girly toothbrush!”

Me: “He won’t care, you know! Just don’t tell him, and he’ll never know about the stickers.”


OH: “Can we go home now?”

So, with the pink Hello Kitty toothbrush in the trolley, we finished the shopping and went home.

While I was unpacking everything and putting it away, OH was making a cup of tea. Naturally, the dogs came into the kitchen. I could hear OH talking to Jeffie.

“You could’ve had a toothbrush with your name on” he said. “But SHE bought you a pink one. ‘Hello Kitty’! I ask you … !”

You can imagine the tones of derision.

The dogs wandered off, but came back when he opened the fridge to get the milk.

“Hello, Kitty!’” I heard, as he petted Jeffie. “You’ve got a girly toothbrush!”

I ignored it.

But, I tell you, every time the black dog came anywhere near OH that afternoon, that’s what I heard: Hello, Kitty!

“Hello, Sid. Hello, Kitty!”

“Hello, Kitty – what do you want, then?”

“Hello, Kitty! Is it nearly dinner time?”

Honestly, it’s a wonder he doesn’t think that’s his name, now!

Later on, when OH was helping to grate cheese for dinner, Sid hopped into the kitchen and fixed him with a hopeful gaze.

“Hello Sid,” said OH, looking down at him, “why are you staring at me like that?”

“Because there’s cheese being perpetrated,” I said in my ‘Sid’ voice*.

“What’s that?” said OH.

I said, patiently: “Sid said it’s because you’re preparing cheese!”

OH: “Oh. I thought he said: ‘Help me! Help me! I can’t go and lie down in the hall, because there’s a big black cat out there!”

Oh, Ha Ha! Very clever. But perhaps taking the ‘Hello Kitty’ joke a tad too far, don’t you think?


* Imagine a cross between Eeyore and Holly from Red Dwarf. The Norman Lovett Holly, that is, not the female one. I didn’t like her.

Posted on January 17, 2013 in Funny, Life, the Universe and Everything, Oddities by Jay9 Comments »


Hello, all you happy people!

What? You’re not happy? Well, that’s just terrible. How about you take part in this meme, and I’ll try to help you to become just a tiny little bit happier than you were to start with?

To begin, I’ll tell you something that made me happy this week.

We got a beautiful, handmade ‘thank you’ card from a good friend. See it? Isn’t it sweet? She made it herself.


It’s to thank us for a Christmas gift, and for our company on a recent holiday. It was very sweet of J, because it’s so easy to write an email to thank someone (or pick up the phone if you’re in the same country), and yet who doesn’t like a personal card that comes through the letterbox with stamps on the envelope and everything?

And what great stamps they were too! I’ve torn the corner from the envelope, because I save postage stamps for the Retired Greyhound Trust. They can sell them and make a little cash to help the dogs.


Just look at the little fish.

Don’t you just love the Clown Fish? Who doesn’t like Clown Fish? It’s as if they were created to make us smile! His companion is pretty neat, too. Then there’s the little Rango type creature on the right hand stamp, who is gorgeous, and a blue … um … what is it? Some kind of sheep or goat, I think. Very regal and beautifully drawn. I find myself smiling every time I look at these.

And that’s what it’s all about. Read on – and then please do join in!

‘How to be HAPPY!’ is a brand new meme. It’s about finding the little things in life which bring a smile or a glow of warmth to our hearts and souls during our daily lives. Why? Because it’s the way all these little things add up which truly determines if we are happy people, not the big stuff like a lottery win.

To enter, write a post about one thing which has made you happy in some small way recently – it could be birdsong, a favourite smell, a particularly good loaf of bread, a blue sky, anything! Then scroll to the bottom, click the Mr Linky graphic and add your blog post details to the Linky which will appear in a new window, and you’re in.

If you’d like, copy the badge (up at the top of this post) and paste it into your own.

Oh, and it would be nice if you popped round to visit and comment on a few of the others, too!

Posted on January 16, 2013 in Life, the Universe and Everything by Jay10 Comments »

Illustration Friday-Ocean-800

Well, yeah. It took me a bit longer to get inspired and produce something for Illustration Friday this week.

To begin with I was a little daunted by the prompt. ‘Ocean’. I mean, however you look at it, water isn’t the easiest thing to represent in two dimensions. It moves. It changes colour according to the light and what’s in it, and what colour the sky is. It sparkles .. or not. You can both see through it, and not see through it. And I’ve had no practice really, at this, because even in the days when I did a lot more creative art, I don’t think I ever really got to grips with water*.

In addition, I’ve kind of set myself an additional challenge, because this is what I do. I want to explore a variety of different media, most of which I won’t have any experience with. This time, I’ve used watercolour pencils. Not only do I not have much experience with watercolour pencils, but I’ve bought a new type; ‘Intense’ by Derwent. They’re really nice, but also really new to me, and as you can see by that little sketch up there, I am very far from being an expert in using them!

This picture is from a photo of No. 1 son which I took at Rehoboth Beach in Delaware. It was autumn, and breezy, and the sea was coming in quite fast; retreating and then advancing a little more each time. Son No. 1 was amusing himself with the waves, trying not to get his feet wet. He was in his twenties at the time.

After using the Inktense pencils, I took a long look at it and decided to ink it in a graphic/cartoony way. I think it works better, but I’m still not particularly happy with it.


* Tee hee.

Please feel free with your criticism. This is a learning curve for me!

I’m scheduling this post, because – weather permitting – I will be visiting family on Tuesday.

To see the answer to this week’s Macro Monday puzzle, go here.

Did you get it right? Were you close? If you did – well done!

If not, well, come back next Monday, and try again. I can’t promise you that it will be easier … but it might be!

Thanks for taking part! I’ll come back and comment when I can.