Aaaand for today’s Macro Monday puzzle, I bring you this neat little object which I’m pretty sure you’re all familiar with, even if you don’t own one!

Some people use them in their professional work, and some use them for their leisure activities, and in some cases they are absolutely necessary.

Me? I use one simply for convenience, I use it probably about 75% of the time, and I take it everywhere … well. Actually that’s not strictly true, because there are a few situations where I have to lay it aside, according to the rules of the place I’m in (partly because of what I use it with). Anyway, I find it extremely useful!

Now, remember it’s a macro. This means that it’s either life-size or larger than life.

How many of you will have one? I can’t tell you. I know a lot of dog people who use them, and I know more people without dogs who use them – without really thinking about it – in all kinds of places, from shops to offices to home, in cars, on bikes, and pretty much anywhere you can name. They’re relatively cheap, really, but you do have to go to a more specialist kind of shop to get them. At least, you do here!

So, take your guess and write it in the comments, and as usual, I’ll be back tomorrow evening (that’s Tuesday, UK time, probably around 10pm) to give you the answer in the form of a picture link.

Have fun – and happy guessing!

UPDATE!! At last … Sorry, OH decided to transfer our sites to a new server and it took far longer than it should have done.

Anyway. DING DING! We have a WINNER!! Let’s have a big hand for Herman Turnip, the only blogger to guess correctly this week! Carol, of Wanderings of an Elusive Mind also deserves a mention for describing it pretty well without actually telling me its name, so second place goes to her. I’m pretty sure she meant one of this type, since I know many people do use them for dog leashes. Well done, Herman T and Carol!

For the rest of you – some of whom were very close – here’s the answer. Click the link to find out what it is a part of.

Thanks so much for playing, everyone – it makes Mondays so much more fun! See you next week?

Posted on May 12, 2013 in Hounds, Life, the Universe and Everything by Jay5 Comments »


Oh gosh, I am SO. TIRED. this morning!  I am sorry to say that there will be no actual pictures of this event. Because it was so hectic and I was so nervous, I didn’t take any and now I’m kicking myself!

This was Brambleberry Greyhounds’ very first fundraising event (apart from the Meet & Greets) and I decided, in my infinite wisdom, to do a pub quiz.

To be fair, it wasn’t really my idea.  One of the owners in Brambleberry’s Facebook group suggested it, when I said we really needed to look at putting together an emergency medical fund after Mr T was returned with his horrible injury.  And I thought ‘Great idea!’

The Fisherman’s Arms, less than a mile from the kennels was chosen as the venue.  The landlady of the pub readily agreed to host it, and one of our members, M, volunteered to be Quizmaster and write the questions on the basis that his mother ran these things for her club. He said he could pick her brains.


So I began to ask around for prizes.  I asked online, I rang shops and business, I wrote letters and I leaned on people to ask on our behalf and I am truly amazed at the sheer number of prizes that were donated – some from big companies like Tesco, from local businesses like garden centres and the greyhound stadium, and many from individuals – who made things themselves or bought things to give.

We had so many prizes donated that we held a raffle as well as the quiz, and still had some to keep back for future events.

One that we kept back was from cartoon artist, Linda Pavitt (who sadly doesn’t have a website).  She gave us two original drawings – and even more valuable – exclusive permission to reproduce them on cards, mugs and anything else we choose.  We are so grateful to Linda for that!  I’m thinking I might raffle the originals off at one of our big greyhound events.


So how did the evening go?  It was HUGE fun!  I think everyone had a blast.

The question were wide ranging and very tough – nobody got full marks, but that was OK, because we all enjoyed heckling our Quizmaster, and when it came to marking the papers those sitting near to us were very entertained by some of OH’s answers:

Q: What does a lepidopterist collect?

OH: Suitcases!


Q: What is a hippophobic afraid of?

OH: Stairs!

But as he said: if you don’t know the answer, it doesn’t hurt to guess!

I must admit, I was a tad puzzled by ‘codices’ as an answer to ‘what do you call a collection of toads?’ but that was easily explained by the fact that he thought that M had said ‘codes’ not ‘toads’. And of course, he would have been correct, if only that really had been the question!

Mr T put in a brief appearance at the end of the evening, along with a companion (to help his confidence).  William is a tripod, and is the most outgoing dog you could meet, and of course together they represented where the money for medical expenses goes, in the cutest, most engaging way.  So cute and engaging, in fact, that later this week, another Brambleberry ex-racer will be getting a chance at a home, because one of the guys taking part in the quiz had been thinking of getting another dog and has now decided on a greyhound!

And that just might be the best thing to come out of the evening – along with the probably-somewhere-around-£250 that we took in entry and raffle money!




It’s been a busy day today, which is why I’m late.  Again.

First thing, I had to get up and take my car in for its MOT.  And you know what?  This car makes me happy!  Especially since a couple of days ago I had it valeted in one of those drive in hand-carwash places and it’s all nice and clean and smells nice.


They were really nice; friendly, helpful, thorough – and also quite cheap, which is always a bonus.  Some of them were a tad short on English-speaking skills, but I now have an insight into how damned hard it is to become fluent in a second language, so I forgave them easily enough.  The young man who did my car is Romanian, and told me that Romania is a beautiful country but there were no prospects for him at home, and that he could maybe earn only a quarter of what he needed in order to rent himself a home (let alone eat as well) so he came here.  And boy, do these guys work hard all day!

So anyway.  My car went in for its MOT and it passed with flying colours. It’s such a great little car.  Danny, who owns the garage where we always take our vehicles to be tested and/or mended, said it should go on forever – and that pleased me, too, because it’s perfect for the dogs and they don’t make the Yaris Verso anymore.  At least, not in this country.

When I got home, I found a friend waiting for me. She’d come to show me her perfume samples and gave me a lovely boxed bottle of fragrance for the Brambleberry Quiz Night raffle.   The Quiz Night is the first big event that I’ve organised for Brambleberry and I have the jitters; what if nobody turns up?  What if the prizes are not what people are expecting? 


What if nobody buys raffle tickets?  But, well, this being The Year of Not Worrying, I’ve decided to go with the flow. I’m doing my best, and winging it, and I’m putting my faith into my supporters and the public and that Things Will Turn Out Alright.

Screen Shot 2013-05-05 at 21.27.37

I also went round several shops leaving more posters – better late than never! – and picked up some cellophane wrap from a florist for a gift basket I’m making for the raffle.  Everyone was very kind and encouraging, and in the pet shop, a man came in while I was talking to the lady behind the counter and she said ‘Look – here’s a greyhound man!’ and so (naturally) we got talking about greyhounds and were still there fifteen minutes later, exchanging stories.

Here’s the funny thing: when we bought my Yaris Verso … ten years ago, for heaven’s sake … the one I actually test-drove was a kind of champagne colour.  Couple of years later, we began to notice a champagne-coloured Yaris Verso parked in the next village, or driving past our house, or in town.  And during our conversation, this Greyhound Man said he’d seen me walking Sid in our village, and asked me if mine was the blue Verso, which he’d always noticed because it was like his own car.


A lightbulb went on in my feeble brain, and I said ‘Don’t tell me – you have a champagne Yaris!’ and he admitted that he did.

All these years and we’ve lived a couple of miles away from each other, owning the same breed of dog, and the same make and model of car!  And eyeing up each other’s Yarises, and wondering why the other person made that choice.  Yarises are common enough, but you see very, very few Versos.

Yeah, I know.  Such a small thing to delight me, but there you are.  That is what this meme is all about – taking pleasure in small things.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to make a couple more cards, tie ribbon round some poop bags, stick some dog treats and toys into a basket and wrap the whole thing in cellophane – which is turn will remind me of my schooldays and making Christmas decorations and fairy wings with shiny, coloured cellophane sheets which crackled so delightfully and let the light shine through like jewels.

Little things, my friends.  Little things.

So, those are a few things which made me happy this week.  How about you?  If you’d like to join in, post about something which lifted your spirits and made you smile, and link back here, if you’d like. You can even use this little badge – it always makes me smile!



Posted on May 10, 2013 in Oddities by Jay1 Comment »

I have been trying since yesterday to make a ‘How to be Happy!’ post, but I can’t upload any pictures.

Sorry not to be very entertaining.  I’ll keep trying and hopefully we’ll get this sorted soon!