Calico – Tortoiseshell Cat

Calico – Tortoiseshell Cat


Fluff my Persian Cat.

I thought my cat was a Tortoiseshell cat, but studying about cats, I find she was a Calico cat. Although she passed away many years ago I have never forgotten her, I had other cats which I liked, but Fluff was my most loved one of them all.

Evidently a cat of this coloring “Calico” refers only to a color pattern on the fur, not to a breed, but she was a beautiful Persian cat.

I had a white Persian cat, which I loved very much, she couldn’t stay clean on the farm so I gave her to another lady that lived in town, which was for the best, she stayed clean, but I regretted it I missed her so much, I never found another white Persian cat like her again.

Fluff Sleeping

Tortoiseshell Cats

This has been a very confusing study for this article, it seems that a calico cat is a name for a tortoiseshell cat (in Canada and the United States), outside of North America the pattern is more usually called tortoiseshell and white so I will stay with the facts that Fluff was a tortoiseshell cat which describes a coat coloring found mostly in female cats.

Tortoiseshell Cats Are Beautiful

Calico Cats

Calico cats are domestic cats with a spotted or parti-color coat, usually predominantly white with orange and black patches. Outside of North America, the pattern is more usually called tortoiseshell-and-white.


Photo Credit –  Calico Kitten, she is beautiful

Lend me a kitten – Poem for special little kitten

In Memory of a special little Christmas kitten that never lived to be a cat, run over crossing the road.

You can see him sleeping on the top of the couch on Christmas day, not very clear but still a special little kitten.

Lend me a Kitten

I will lend to you for awhile a kitten, God said.
For you to love while he lives, and mourn when he’s dead.
Maybe for 12 or 14 years, or maybe two or three.
But will you, ’till I call him back, take care of him for me?

He’ll bring his charms to gladden you and, should his stay be brief,
you’ll always have his memories as solace for your grief.
I cannot promise he will stay, since all from earth return.
But there are lessons taught below I want this kitten to learn.

I’ve looked the whole world over in search of teachers true,
and from the folk that crowds life’s land, I have chosen you.
Now, will you give him all your love, not think of the labor?
Nor hate me when I come to take my kitten home again?

I fancied that I heard them say,”Dear Lord, thy will be done.”
For all the joys this kitten brings, the risk of grief we’ll run.
We’ll shelter him with tenderness, we’ll love him while we may.
And for the happiness that we have known, forever grateful stay.

But should you call him back, much sooner than we planned,
We’ll brave the bitter grief that comes, and try to understand.
If, by our love, we’ve managed your wishes to achieve,
Then in memory of him whom we loved, please help us while we grieve.

Fluff on Doorstep

Fluff sitting on the front doorsteps in the 1980’s

NanoPoblano 2017 – Day 26 – Your body is beautiful

NanoPoblano 2017  – Day 26 – Your body is beautiful


Photo Credit

Everybody’s is beautiful – Believe it

We all have beauty in one form or another

It is important to believe that your body is beautiful, no matter what flaws you may have.

It’s not an easy time in anyone’s life when we realize that our children are becoming aware of body images, it is far easier for everyone to just accept their body, as it was gifted to them.

How you and your children look at and talk about the body Is an important subject.

Help children to get through those years, without judging what their body looks like, as everybody is beautiful, no two bodies are alike, unless they are identical twins, and then they are different, in their inner selves, mind, soul and they have their own thoughts.

Let’s celebrate the fact that people come in all shapes and sizes. Be a source of positive comments about self-image. Talk about health and happiness rather than appearance.


Photo Credit

Studies have shown that some children start talking about body image as young as seven, one study found that 48% of girls when asked, selected an ideal body type that was thinner than their own.

Meanwhile, celebrities obsess about their weight, kids surf the net and watch TV, and there is only so much parents can do, but it’s worth trying anyway.


Helpful ideas

Be careful how you talk about your own body, if you are overweight don’t say “I hate myself” or talk about yourself as being “fat” or “ugly”.

Perhaps get some help for your own body-image issues.

Meanwhile, keep negative thoughts inside your own head and don’t vocalize them.

If you are on a diet, talk about your “healthy eating regime” rather than the fact that you are starving and are a bad person for having no willpower.

If possible, do not even talk about a diet, just say you are eating better food, you want to lose some weight and that will mean you can have more fun running around with the kids.


Photo Credit

If your child is overweight, never, ever talk about putting them on a diet.

You control what they eat so simply replace and substitute unhealthy food for healthy food without making a fuss.

Talk about the five plus a day servings of fruit and vegetables and the advantages of putting good food into your bodies, such as having more energy.

Do not rate and compare your child with their friends.

Children come in all shapes and sizes at the same age, so remarking that one child is so much smaller, taller, bigger than another is only encouraging your child to notice a difference rather than accept their friends as they are.

Do not let your children hear you doing a” rate and compare” about your friends and acquaintances, you may be tempted to refer to someone as “fat” or “skin and bones”.

Let your children be who they are and resist the urge to point out aspects of their body shape if they are in togs or sports gear “Oh look at that big puku” is cute when they are toddlers, but not when they are school age.


Photo Credit

If your child says they are unhappy with their bodies, try to find out why.

Is it a result of teasing at school, has a friend made a comment or have they reached this conclusion all on their own?

If there is a bullying issue you need to get straight up to the school and deal with it. Then sit down with your child, explain that bodies change shape and size as children grow and then gently, over the next few months, ease your child into doing some more exercise, eating healthier food-as something the whole family is doing, not just your child.

Talk to your child about how everyone is different.

Discuss hair and eye color, skin color, height and weight, abilities, likes, and dislikes.

Ask them what the world would be like if everyone was the same, and encourage them to be accepting all different shapes and sizes.

Don’t reinforce messages about trying to have a perfect body.

If you are reading a magazine together or watching TV as a family, discuss realistic-looking bodies in a positive term such as “doesn’t she look happy and healthy.

Never, ever ridicule your child in front of people by saying things that you wouldn’t like said about yourself. Some parents think it is amusing, but their child simply gets the message that they are bad, unworthy, fat and deprived.


NanoPoblano 2017 – Day 25 – Talking Animals

NanoPoblano 2017 – Day 25 – Talking Animals

#NanoPoblano 2017

Cute Puppy

Talking Animals

Animals can not talk like humans, but they do communicate with us if they are reared by humans and loved, they understand our way of life.

They make a wide variety of sounds, from the musical song of a bird, the howl of a wolf, clicks by insects, the whistle of a dolphin, the contented purr of a cat, and the bark of a dog.


Today I’m going to tell a tale about a very loved dog that was my sons when he married, trout stayed on the farm with me.

His name was trout, trout would draw his top lip back and closed his mouth, and chatter away moving his mouth trying to communicate with me like speech, (I was the only person he would communicate with like that,) he would make many different sounds, that were all different, not a bark, that would come out of that mouth, but I never made out a word from that chatting.

The funny thing about this he only started doing that after we left the farm and our son took over running it, I couldn’t take trout to town, he was a farm dog and won’t be happy confined to a section. I felt awful it was as if he was begging me to take him home with me, every time I visited my son.

Talking Cockatiel “Pretty Bird” Conversation

Why can’t animals talk like humans talk?

I asked this Question on Google.

Why can’t animals talk like humans talk?

I liked this answer after a lot of researching, so I’m would like to share it with you.

The larynx and mouth of most non-human animals differ enough physically that they are not able to reproduce the same sounds that humans use to communicate, just like we cannot mimic crocodile or elephant sounds perfect.

We may be able to make similar noises, but odds are that crocodiles or elephants would not recognize those sounds.

Another reason was it has to do with brain size and function.

Humans have a hugely developed cerebral cortex, and many areas of this portion of the brain have been associated with language functions.

Even animals with brains of similar size do not have a similar layout and therefore, are not capable of the higher level communication functions that constitute human language.

Also, another part is cultural, for lack of a better word.

Almost every animal (and plant) communicates in some way.

Those forms of communication evolved under different pressures and conditions than human language and serve slightly different purposes.

Which is to say that animals may not talk like us because they don’t need (or want) to.


Image courtesy of Salvatore Vuono at

Talking Budgies

Yes, male budgies can talk my father was very good at talking to them, I heard them responding many times and I could understand every word they were saying.

Why I said a male budgie talking because my father was an expert at getting them to talk, but he never managed to get a female budgie to talk.

First of all, because of the shape of their mouths.

Birds can be taught English to express certain things but they have no lips so it is difficult.

That’s because they don’t have vocal chords like we do.

Because of that, animals can breathe normally while they’re eating.

They don’t have to keep pausing to swallow.

Now “Can animals talk”?

We had singing pigs.

Formaldehyde and Additives in Children’s Clothing

Children Clothes

Photo Credit

Formaldehyde and Additives in Children’s Clothing

Some garments were found a few years ago to contain higher levels of formaldehyde in them, more than what was considered safe by the World Health Organization.

Formaldehyde is a popular “cheap” chemical used in clothing, shoes, furniture, fertilizer paper, toys, cosmetics, and food. I found an article on formaldehyde in children’s clothing that gave details on how long-term exposure and high concentrations of formaldehyde can lead to cancer.

Also, exposure to formaldehyde can cause eye, skin and nasal irritations, respiratory problems, asthma, and cancer.

Here are some tips for making sure that, as well as looking cute, your child is safe too:

  • As a rule, wash all clothes at least twice before you let them anywhere near your children, especially babies.
  • This also goes for bed linen and towels.
  • Laundering will wash out most of the additives that have been put into the fabric and also make the items softer.

What to do when washing.

  • Add one cup of baking soda to the wash and soak the clothes overnight before putting them through the usual machine cycle.
  • Also, while you are at it, switch to a perfume-free laundry detergent.

There are now several “sensitive” brands of washing detergent, or you can use “pure soap flakes”.

  • Don’t use fabric softener which has strong perfume added to it, as these can cause allergic reactions.
  • Look for HE detergents free of dyes and perfumes to wash baby’s clothes in.

Check Children’s clothes:

  • When out buying clothes, take a good look at them.
  • Are they shiny, stiff as a board or permanent-press?.
  • Do they smell odd?.

These are all signs that they have been finished with chemicals and if a garment is permanent-press, it means the chemicals used on it will be meant to be permanent and will be very difficult to remove.

  • Don’t think that buying 100% cotton or linen means there are no additives to worry about.
  • Natural fibers are extremely prone to mildew, so unless it clearly states on the label that it is additive-free, natural-fibre clothing can still contain additives.
  • 800px-Brand_new_second_hand

Photo credit

Think about buying second-hand.

There is no longer such a stigma about wearing second-hand clothing and there are shops everywhere with good quality and well-laundered clothing for sale.

By the time your child wears it, you can be fairly sure it’s had many washes and will, therefore, be free of most chemicals and additives.

Accept hand-me-downs.

When you have a baby, you are never short of boxes of clothes, so take another look at that woolen cardigan that’s been in the family for a decade, it will be soft and free of any chemicals, not to mention warm.

Little advice for older children’s second-hand clothes

Older children can be encouraged to wear second-hand clothes by sending them to an op-shop to choose their own gear.

They will come out with more clothes than they know what to do with and will get to use their creativity in combining pieces.


Photo Credit

Is Flame-Resistant Clothing Safe for Children?

Many children’s items, including clothing, car seat covers, and toys, are treated with flame-resistant chemicals.

Since 1953, federal regulations have required any item of sleepwear for children to be flame-resistant.

However, concerns over the environmental and health effects of chemical flame retardants prompted the regulations to be revised to allow items to be made with non-treated fabrics that fit snugly.

If your child is wearing flame-resistant clothing, their clothes may smolder but would not catch fire unless held in the flame for a long period of time.

As soon as the fabric is away from the flame, it would stop burning.

So, therefore, flame-resistant clothing is safe for children.

How to Properly Wear Flame-Resistant Clothing

The above video is an up to date video, published on 5 Jan 2015

A DuPont expert explains guidelines for how to properly wear flame-resistant undergarments, outerwear, and rainwear.

What is more important than protecting your children health?

The toxic they are exposed to every day, whether it’s their toys, bedding, clothes, etc.

Everything has changed over the last few decades more harmful than ever, most materials come with fire retardant chemicals in them.

Also containing other additives, synthetic chemicals, cancer-causing ingredients, etc.

Let’s protect them and be careful when buying their clothing, always wash before wearing them.

Thought’s About Modern Children Playing with Dolls


Photo Credit – A typical reborn doll. Note the added cloth body on the limbs, and the “rear plate” to make it more realistic.

These days dolls look so real, just like they are human, as the reborn doll, a manufactured skin doll that has been transformed to resemble a human infant with as much realism as possible

Dolls, never go out of date, they just become collectibles and are carried on through the generations, memories.

But they should be part of a child’s life, it leads to the wonderful and lovely job of caring for babies, toddlers, and children.


Photo Credit

My early memories of dolls as a child was a little kewpie doll I had, it was a treasure I could hold in one hand, and I would carry it around everywhere, over the years that little doll has got lost.

While searching for some gift ideas for girls I came across kewpie dolls, it rekindles my mind of that little doll, and they are still around, Check out Amazon.

There are some very nice dolls for girls and boys, these day’s men are bringing up children (house husbands) as well as a woman, but I don’t know that they played with dolls as a child, I could be wrong.

Here’s a blog about children playing with dolls, and Yes even boys, interesting read.

It has been said children prefer to play with touch screens more than traditional toys, like dolls, action toys, and board games, even the barbie doll has been forgotten.

The earliest American black dolls with realistic African facial features were made in the 1960s.

This photo is of Various antique to modern black dolls, which I found interesting, they weren’t around when I was a child, and I did think about it, as I had many dark skinned friends at school (Maoris).


Photo Credit – The earliest American black dolls with realistic African facial features were made in the 1960s.

Now with the reborn dolls, it is a chance to get your child playing with them.

Do your children lay with dolls?

What are you thought’s about boys playing with dolls?

Happy Families – Part Two


Happy Families – Part Two

Ideas for a Healthy Happy Teenager

Photo Credit

We tend not to want to expose ourselves to anything that might take away what we have created and we actually feel most things as a threat in the first years of our child’s adolescent.

Thinking that when our child leaves the house that something bad is going to happen, so we need to control them, that is wrong, we have to let go of that thought for a healthy happy teenager, we must trust them, they know when they are doing wrong and in most cases, it is the peer pressure that will lead then astray.

Try setting reasonable boundaries for your teenage children, if they are broken, then resist getting angry and instead explain the consequences of their actions, which is different in every home, you set the rules, explain by breaking the rules, how it is going to affects them, it is better than getting angry.

Find a way to say, “yes” most of the time instead of “no”. most out of control teens are signaling to their parents that they are desperate to be older, more responsible and independent, so saying “no” isn’t going to work.

Sort out a way to get some of the things they want – like a part time job for them, so they have their own money, can be a compromise while allowing them to experience some independence.

Other things that cause many problems in a family home

Drugs and drinking are some of the hardest things for parents to cope with, also the gay teenagers.

Just stop and think, what were you doing at 17 or 18 years of age?

You will note then that your child is not such a rebel as you think.

The challenge is to find the right balance between healthy risks and harmful ones.

Give them a hug

Photo Credit

Some helpful tips on how to talk to your teenager

Remember to show them that you are always there for them, and yes teenagers love hugs from their parents, even though you may think they are too old for that, no one is never too old for a hug.

The first rule is to listen and not interrupt – no matter how horrified you may be, at the things you are hearing.

Let your teenager know they can trust you.Anything that is said between the two of you, will not be repeated unless you have their permission.

As they gain confidence with you, they will be more likely to come to you when things are troubling them and you will be in a position to help them.

Do not judge, instead of responding to your child (that is sharing the fact that they have tried smoking marijuana), by butting in and giving them a full on the anti-drug lecture, let them finish and then talk about the subject, in general terms such as:

How did you feel when that happened?

What did you think about what you did?

Let them explore the right and wrong of the situation.

Leave the anti-drug message for some other time, they know that message already.

Just be there to support them and guide them gently the right way, a hug would not go astray in this situation.

Try not criticize, teens are very sensitive to perceived insults, especially about their friends or lifestyle.

Don’t get at them about wasting time playing internet games, allow them to have their own opinions.

This is what growing up is all about, experimenting with ideas and working out what works best for them.

Their opinions might not always be in sync with yours but if you, encourage them to be who they want to be, they will grow into balanced adults.

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Raising rude teenagers.

The first step is simple: realizing that inside every teen resides two very different people the regressed child and the emergent adult.

One of the main things, that I don’t understand is the rude attitude.

I find very hard to cope with, (in my day’s) if we answered our parents back or yelled at them, we all knew what would happen, so we never ventured there, I don’t think it did me any harm.

The sex issue, we can usually cope with that one, most schools are teaching that subject these days

Substance use, I am lost, I feel it is destroying young bodies and the family.

Happy days!

What are your thought’s about this post, I love comments?

Happy Families – Part one


Happy Families – Part one

Photo Credit

Bringing up a family can be a frightening business, and teenagers (I think) is the hardest part of raising a family.

Questions, questions and more questions, never a day goes by without some thought has to be put into problems created by most teens

Why aren’t they home?

Who are they with?

Why haven’t they called, so many why’s.

A teenager world is a dynamic, unpredictable place. The world around them is forever changing, so many rules, so growing up for teenagers and with their mood swings is a real challenge for them and the parents.

That’s why stringent parenting “techniques” just don’t always bring about the results we would like.

Every teenager keeps secrets, and if you’re like most parents, you worry about what your kids are not telling you–especially when they prefer text messages and social networking sites to face-to-face conversation.

I brought up five children, and really times haven’t changed since the 1970-80’s, just that a whole lot more is happening in the world now, even us adults have a job keeping up with it, no wonder teenagers are not coping very well.

The good news is that they are not teenagers forever and they do grow up to be a credit to your family.

Happy Parenting.


Photo Credit

Bringing up Teen Children Which do you think is easier?

  • Raising a Teen Boy
  • Raising a Teen Girl
  • Neither – they are just a hard as one or the other to raise.

Please Comment, love to have your thoughts about happy teenagers, it could be helpful for everyone involved with young adults.

dVerse – Haibun Monday – 28


#dVerse  Photo Credit

In response to dVerse‘s poets Haibun Monday-28 Prompt “Childhood Experiences”.

This is the first Haibun I have written if you are interested check out the link above

Discussing Mushrooms

It was mid-Autumn a time when mushrooms were plentiful on the farm especially if there had been the warm rain, we all would go out on the farm and gather mushrooms in our bucket.This particular year there was a shortage of them so some that were over ripe were picked to feed our family of seven. Some of those mushrooms were not suitable for eating never the less they were cooked.

With the results even now the thought of ever eating mushrooms at all, especially in a white sauce turns my stomach inside out, and I can still feel that belt that thrashed my body, leaving welts all over it.

Eating whitebait still reminds me of those white maggot looking grubs floating around in the mushroom sauce.

eating brown mushrooms
the kind that grow on a farm
autumn reminds me

NanoPoblano 2016 – Day Sixteen – Extended Families playing together


NanoPoblano  2016 – Day Sixteen – Extended Families playing together

#NaBloPoMo – Day Sixteen  of – Cheer Peppers NanoPoblano 30 Day Challenge

Families doing things together.

One of the best ways to keep a family together is to do something different occasionally to what you do every weekend.

So if you spend most weekends working around the home as a lot of working parents do think of something to do to make it a memorable day together as a complete family unit.

Ideas that don’t need to cost a fortune.

  • If you have a young family take them down to the park and feed the ducks, have a picnic lunch and spend time playing with them on the swings etc.
  • Have a barbeque and let the older ones do the cooking, train them to do it safely.
  • Pack a picnic lunch and off to the beach, beach coming or fishing.
  • Have a bike ride together, stop and have an ice-cream on the way, if you are around a shop.
  • Family day at the swimming pool.
  • Go shopping and celebrate by doing something you normally would not do – be proud that you are a parent.
  • Children love it even if you just take a bat and ball, or cricket set and go to the park, and have a game, remember the picnic.
  • Include half brothers and sisters in family outings – where both sides of the parents work together to have a pleasant day out, (past problems must be forgotten for the peace of the children, in most cases, it wasn’t their fault why there was a broken home.)

I know we used to do it and you would be surprised how many other families would join in on the afternoon fun (for example playing a game of baseball, cricket, football), and sometimes we would have a barbeque together at the park with the other family making it a great days outing.

If you have elderly parents remember to include them in some of your weekend outings, it is a way to thank them for being your parents, because without them you wouldn’t have been born and there would be no family.

It is also good for your morale, you will feel much happier at work during the week, the work that didn’t get done over the weekend can wait until you get back to it, but I bet it gets done quicker after a day away from home. Enjoy your family while you can, your children grow very quickly, and your parents won’t be around forever.

Fifty years ago doing things like that was done all the time, but these days it is very seldom seen.

It gives your parents something to remember, at the end of a closing day it will bring back pleasant memories for months to come, memories are precious to young and old alike.

Precious Memories

The years go by so fast, give time to taking some photos that your children will remember, those day’s spend as a family unit together.

Use a camera and get some printed, not a cell phone, as I find most photos taken by a cellphone never ever get seen again, or only seen by the person taking them.

In the years to come your children will treasure them as they will bring back memories, that your children will talk about in years to come of those days spent together as a family.

Happy days with everyone, with plenty of laughter and fun, good for every bodies health.


ANZAC Day – 25 APRIL 2016


Photo Credit Each year on ANZAC Day in Te Awamutu, New Zealand the graves of War Veterans are decorated.

In Remembrance Of those Special Soldiers – Never to be Forgotten.

25 April is ANZAC DAY where we remember all who fell and fought saving our future.

Anzac Day is a national day of remembrance in Australia and New Zealand and is commemorated by both countries on 25 April every year to honor members of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) who fought at Gallipoli in Turkey during World War I.

It now more broadly commemorates all those who died and served in military operations for their countries.

I had uncles that never return from the war, in fact, it was the end of the Corbishley line in New Zealand as Charles was the only son, killed in action.

My Father-in-law fought in World War One, he was one of the lucky soldiers to return, there are many stories which we will never forget, that he shared with us.

George Arnold Hagley

George Arnold Hagley, never to be forgotten.


In Memory of George Arnold Hagley

BODY ON EMBARKATION New Zealand Rifle Brigade

EMBARKATION UNIT 3rd Battalion, B Company

EMBARKATION DATE 5 February 1916

PLACE OF EMBARKATION Wellington, New Zealand


They clad us in the colors of the forest and armed us with the weapons made for war.

Then taught to us the ancient trade of killing, and lead us to the sound of battles roar.

So give us comfort as we lay down bleeding, and pray upon our cold and stiffened dead.

But mark our place that we might be accounted, this foreign soil becomes our graven bed.

Now children place upon this stone a garland and learn of us each Anzac Day at dawn.

We are New Zealand’s dead from distant conflict, our sacrifice remembered ever more.