Thursday, 28 November 2013

The Best of Health for Fur-Babies

I've just been reading through some of the blogs I subscribe to. The pet blogs from the Northern Hemisphere mention the cold and bluster of the autumn/fall and the approaching winter season. I'm imagining the beauty of snow clad landscapes, warmly wrapped families and pets, hot chocolate and sparkling early evening lights. Having only experienced autumn and winter like this once many years ago, it's a stretch of my imagination as I sit with brilliant sunshine, 30+ degree heat and high humidity, heading into my wet tropical Southern Hemisphere summer.

With our spring comes the waking and movement of beasties such as snakes, paralysis ticks and cane toads which are a real danger to pets in my area. Not all snakes around here are venomous, but we do have one or two of the most venomous in the world, the Eastern Brown Snake and in particular, the Taipan. I have a National Park on my back boundary, and snakes slither through my yard on occasion. This area is also paralysis tick heaven, and because I have a garden pond, cane toads are attracted to my place as well.

Paralysis ticks can kill your pet within days, as can cane toads, which have poison glands on their heads.

I therefore have Pet Insurance, which covers Winnie and Hunny in case of accidents and emergencies. I had started Pet Insurance with my previous dog Lea, and I'm thankful I did, because there were several occasions later in her life when it was a financial life saver. So naturally, when the girls arrived home, cover for them was arranged within a week. And it has already paid off for Hunny, who had a paralysis tick when she was about 6 months old. She had to stay overnight at the vet clinic, and all up with medications and care the bill came to around $500. For a cash strapped writer, that was a big deal!

There are many types of pet health insurance, and many levels of cover. I have Optional Pet Cover with my Home and Contents Insurance, and it costs about an extra $10 per month. It's attached to the premium,  so I don't notice the extra, as I pay by the month. Pet Health Cover is available everywhere now. Through your Vet, Life Insurance, (R)SPCA, online, etc and there are usually basic, medium and high levels of cover.

So whatever season you're heading into, if you have insurance for your own health but not your pet, why not have a look around and see whats on offer? You may be surprised how good it can be.

The Backyard, where Winnie and Hunny Explore, Play and Live. Next week, an update on "Labradoodle Fun and Facts".

Until Monday, have a wonderful weekend everyone.

Leonie, Hunny and Winnie.

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

I am Grateful for...

It's nearly Thanksgiving in the U.S. and although we don't celebrate it here in Australia, I thought I'd say a little about being grateful. This year I've kept a gratitude diary - rather, every day, at the top of my diary page, I've written something I'm grateful for. Yesterday I was grateful for wondrous storms. Today I'm grateful for helpful people.

Being grateful is the same as giving thanks, and I'd like to give thanks to the people and groups who have helped me with my writing. As a new writer "coming out" in July (I'd started writing 40 years ago but shelved it until several years ago), I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I knew I wanted to write ebooks, so off I went. Nothing happened. I wrote a memoir. It's as yet unpublished, thank goodness, as it needs lots of editing I now realise.

I knew I needed help if I was going to make a decent job of my work. So I enrolled in an online writers coaching course with one of the best coaches around. Angela Booth has been in the industry for over 40 years and helps new and established writers and authors with coaching, guidance, classes and courses. She helps small business with creative copywriting and web content. She is a ghostwriter, has info products and several writing blogs. You can find her here:

What I'm saying is that it's enormously helpful and unquestionably important to get help. I've learnt much more about writing, authoring, publishing, creating a platform - all things an eauthor needs to know - than if I had flown solo. Not to mention the personal support and confidence boost I've received. I can say without a doubt that I would be worse of now without coaching. I love doing what I'm doing, and I want to improve what I'm doing. If you're wanting to start a writing career, but a part of you is telling you negative stories, get help. Don't give up if you've started and it's getting a bit tough, get help. And when you've got help, be grateful, because it makes a difference, mainly to yourself.

So, I am grateful for Angela. I am grateful for the information that has come to me from the writing blogs, and not to forget, the dog blogs I follow, the groups I've joined, but haven't engaged in much as yet and I'm grateful for you who read my words.

On that note, I wish my U.S. readers a Happy Thanksgiving. Be safe whilst travelling everyone. See you Friday with more from the Doods.

Leonie, Hunny and Winnie

Beautiful frangipani currently flowering in my garden. Can't you just smell it?

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Labradoodle Christmas

Oh yes, Christmas is only a month away! It does it every year doesn't it, it sneaks up on us? Yesterday I remembered I needed to order my 2014 calendar. I've always had dog calendars hanging in my kitchen, and of course the last few years they've been Labradoodle calendars. The years before that they were Airedale Terrier calendars. Airedale Terriers and Labradoodles aren't common where I live in small town regional Yeppoon, so I've always ordered my calendar from Amazon. That way I know I won't be disappointed if I look in the city and can't find it, which happened once...

I've always ordered a Brown Trout calendar, maybe because that's the one I bought first. I have looked at others and just didn't like them as much. As you can see, I've added several links to the side bar where you can have a browse.

When I looked, I saw lots of other Labradoodle goodies, so therefore there would be other breed goodies. I also ordered a figurine, right at the end of my "Labradoodle Ornaments" search, a cute little chocolate labradoodle at $12.99. There's heaps of Christmas ornaments for the tree, some t-shirts, baby rompers and labradoodles in tea cups :) Check it out for yourself and see what you can find :)

Whilst writing this, Hunny and Winnie have been lying close by. They haven't had much to say lately, so here's an update on them.

Winnie had the beginnings of a hair cut yesterday...this usually happens in two stages. Stage one is when I give her a rough cut with the scissors and get all the loose hair off. She has a fleece coat with very fine, loosely spiraling hair. If I'm not on top of her grooming, her coat can get knotty, especially under her collar. If this has happened, I then tease the knots out, give her a bath then proceed to the second stage which I do the next day. I then use the clippers to even her up and give her a fresh new, short "do".

Hunny's coat is totally different, another "Chalk and Cheese" difference between them. She has a very thick, very curly wool coat, and I take her to the groomer! One fur-baby to groom is enough and Winnie's coat is easier! Once they're both done I'll post some before and after photos, maybe in a few weeks as Hunny won't visit until closer to Christmas.

Other than that, Hunny has been having frequent dips in the garden pond. I don't think I'll ever get it back to it's former glory but hey, it can be a fur-baby pool for a while.They've also been having a great time playing hide and seek around the sofa. Winnie hides before Hunny comes in, thinking Hunny doesn't know, then off they go for a good play. Now they're out having a snack and I'm about to have a coffee. Mmmm.

'Till Wednesday, and more Labradoodle chat.


Friday, 22 November 2013

Online on Kobo

Hi everyone,

this morning I received an email with the news that my books are now available on Kobo, and here's the link to my page.

This is great, and fast, just a matter of days after Barnes and Noble who published the books online within a matter of hours after I uploaded them to draft2Digital. Here's my page on B&N

Now it's only iBookstore and that may still take a week. Draft2Digital did say approximately how long it would take for each store to publish. So far I'm impressed. It means, that instead of having to publish separately to up to 6 different stores, any self-publisher can publish to all under one roof. I have only used draft2Digital for the 3 stores I mentioned above, as I had already published to Amazon separately, and will continue to do so.

There's so much to do as a new author/self-publisher. It's not only just writing books, you also have to spend time, quite a lot of time establishing yourself in the writing world. It's great that we have ebooks now as we can reach many more readers, but we have to work harder to make our voices heard among all the other voices and media of today.

Not only am I a newbie author, I'm also a newbie blogger, tweeter, pinner and google+er. I've had to work hard these last few months on everything related to writing, self-publishing AND social media, whilst having CFS.

It's tiring, and often I sit on my bed while I write, like now, or I go back to bed after breakfast, like this morning, BUT I LOVE THIS PROCESS, and I LOVE WRITING and it can only get better, faster, easier, as I gain more knowledge.

From next week I'll be blogging on Monday, Wednesday and Friday only. I need more structure to my weeks...I haven't done any book writing for 2 weeks, it's been all research and sorting social media etc.

Winnie and Hunny say hi, and will have a few words for you next week. Until then, have a great weekend everyone, see you monday.


Wednesday, 20 November 2013

An App for Everything

As you know, I have my books published on Amazon, for Kindle devices, which means, up until now you've only been able to buy the books from Amazon. That mostly also means you need a Kindle to read the books, or so you may have thought.

The truth is, these days, there's an App for everything, as well as Kindle. I don't need the App, because I have a Kindle, an older keyboard one, not a touchscreen, but I do have the App on my Android tablet, where I read the most. In fact, you can get the Kindle App for ipad, iphone, Android and PC. All you have to do is go to your store and download it, it's FREE.

Of course, you also need an Amazon account, but that's FREE to set up too.

About a month ago I came across another option which has allowed me (and any self-published author) to publish my books to:
Nook (Barnes and Noble)
and iBookstore

 Draft2Digital has come to the rescue, and today I already have the "Winnie and Hunny Speak" Series available in the Barnes and Noble ebookstore. Kobo and iBookstore take a little longer, but the books should be available through them within a week.

This is excellent news for readers who don't have Kindles, but have other devices such as Kobo, and who don't want to fuss around with multiple devices/Apps on multiple devices. Two friends have Kobos, and up until now they couldn't buy my Amazon books. Now they can. Hooray for innovation!

So spread the word to whole wide world folks, if you've got other ereaders other than Kindle, get your author friends to publish through draft2Digital so you can read their work on your device. Email your favourite authors and let them know about this service too. It works to benefit all of us.

And now that I have my books uploaded to more sites, I can hopefully get back to writing. It's been two frustrating weeks of sorting and fixing "stuff".  I'm in the middle of changing my ISP which isn't going smoothly. I'm tired, and Winnie and Hunny have left muddy paw prints and bits of stick all over the floor. It's hot. I stepped up to air con on yesterday, then drank coffee this morning so now feel wired!

What's a girl to do? Have lunch, it's 1.30pm here, have a snooze, and go and sort ISP out.

Happy reading, writing and playing with dogs,


Monday, 18 November 2013

When Blogging/Writing is Slow, check out Pinterest for Ideas.

I'm still in the research stage of "Labradoodle Fun and Facts", because sometimes other things in life come along that need attention before writing. And sometimes blogging ideas are hard to come up with and you grow a little stale, soooooo, I go to Pinterest, amongst other places, for ideas.

I discovered Pinterest only about 3 months ago and I absolutely LOVE it. Here's a link to their page for you to check out. and of course if you click on the gadget on Leonie's Lives you'll see what I've got on my boards, which I created for my page.

If you don't know about Pinterest, it's a social media site, yes, but, it's purely VISUAL. You get to Pin (post) images, anything you like, within the rules of course, and it's VERY POPULAR because there's no imagination required. Brilliant, and it's popularity out ranks Facebook. Naturally, it works differently, and you'll be pleasantly surprised with what you find.

If you haven't already, start up your own page, it's a whole heap of fun!

Till next time,


Saturday, 16 November 2013

My Other, Earlier Books

Before I wrote the Winnie and Hunny Speak series, I published a book of poems. They were published last year, about this time, but they were written in the early to mid 1970's.

I started doodling when at high school, during a boring class which I can't recall, and it evolved into thought and lines and poems which I wrote down in to a very large red covered journal.

I recall it being the time of Woodstock and nuclear bomb testing in the South Pacific, and of course, the Vietnam War. Local University students would march past my school and we would have to pretend not to notice them go past our windows. Yeah, as if!

Several years later I went to Europe and travelled around with a friend. I still wrote poems and when I eventually returned to New Zealand from whence I came, it was to a family tragedy. I wrote one or two more poems shortly after, then only one more about 10 years ago.

I still had my Big Red Poetry Book though, and I had transferred every poem onto my computer thinking one day to do "something" with the poems. That something turned out to be "The Odd One Out - Primitive Poems from the Past. My first foray into ebooks and self publishing.

My poems were the outpourings of a young and lonely soul, a teenager naive yet to the world and her place in it. I didn't think anyone other than myself would be interested in them, let alone want to publish them, so it was up to me. And because I already had a kindle, I heard about self publishing, and the rest, as they say, is history.

So above is the link to my author page/ book list on Amazon which includes all of my books to date. There's also a volume of poems written by my brother Paul. He was tragically killed in a car accident when I was overseas, and was the reason I returned home. He was 17. I never knew he wrote poetry, and only found his work one day several years ago when I was helping my mum shift house. I believe his words are better than mine :) Check his poems out: Salamanca Summer.

Thursday, 14 November 2013

First Storms, Wet Dogs

Hi All,

I can't seem to inset a workable link to Hunny's book cover, at the moment, so what you have in the sidebar works if you highlight it and follow it to Amazon. Then you can see which cover I chose, and of course...purchase the book :)

It's Friday, yay! Yesterday afternoon we had a lovely thunderstorm, the first real downpour of the wet season. I always make sure I'm on my back veranda when storms pass over, as I enjoy them so much!

The dogs had a wonderful time as well. Shortly after the rain began, Hunny went out and stood in it, she was simply enjoying its goodness. She'd had a bath on Monday, so she was clean, however, she just loves the water so much she had to have some of the rain as well.

Then she came back and shook off all over me. She waited a few minutes before repeating her rain and shake adventure and in fact did so several times until she was thoroughly soaked.

Winnie wasn't having any of it at first. She prefers to stay dry, except when it comes to the sprinkler or the hose of course. However, she realised that Hunny was having more fun than she was, so very surprising to me, she joined in.

Naturally, I ended up with 2 wet, smelly dogs that wanted to sit next to me on a small 2 seater sofa on the veranda. The rain had stopped and the air was a little cooler now, so guess who was feeling chilly?

I could go inside and change, but they had to remain out for a while longer. They had muddy paws as well as being wet, so on the veranda it was. After towelling her off, here's Winnie.

Don't you just love dogs?

Have a great weekend everyone, see you Monday.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Hunny Labradoodle's Helping Hand online

Hunny's compilation is now online, and this marks the, for now at least, final :) book about Winnie and Hunny. But who knows what a year may bring? Maybe so many more adventures will happen that they'll have to put paw to keyboard - err - dictate for (a) further book(s).
I will be concentrating on my next book called "Labradoodle Fun and Facts" as well as finishing my memoir "Broken", about a breakdown I had 15 years ago. That was a rough, tough time.

As you probably noticed yesterday, I blathered on a lot about designed dogs. No more along those lines; more informative from now on.

Originally, Labradoodles were bred as Guide Dogs in Australia for someone who was blind and whose husband was allergic to dog dander. The best was a Labrador Retriever X Poodle. That was in the 1960's, and many Labradoodle's were used very successfully as Guide Dogs. It wasn't until much later that the "designer dog" label was attached and the world went crazy.

So then, part of my new book will look at the fun stuff about Labradoodles, and part of it will look into the road traveled by  them from their early days to where they are now. They have come a long way indeed. For example, there are Associations that have set breed standards, and are in the process of having the Labradoodle recognised internationally as a legitimate breed in it's own right.

I'd vote for that. :)

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Labradoodle Design

Once upon a time all dogs were just dogs. They weren't Beagles or German Shepherd Dogs or Pomeranians or Labradoodles. Many of our much loved purebreds today are in fact only recently so. Some as recent as 150 to 200 years. So what was all the fuss about when Labradoodles came along?

The fuss was that lots of people got greedy, greedy for the get-rich-quick schemes that sprung up out of "designer dogs" and the puppy mills which grew around them. Now this topic has been done to death and I'm not about to rake it up again, but to me, it does seem unfair to Labradoodles, the innocent parties in the matter.

Labradoodles are wonderful dogs, as are most breeds of dog. We all have our favourites and not so favourites. We choose our companions according to many criteria: size, coat, looks, status, personality, behaviour, ability, etc.

If a new breed is created, which has beneficial qualities others don't, isn't that a great thing? It happens all the time with breeders of many animal and bird species, and nature does it irregardless of what we think.

Don't you just love it? We're not really in control and never will be!

By the way, I've uploaded "Hunny Labradoodle's Helping Hand". It's being published at this very moment and tomorrows post will have a link to it. Hunny is very pleased with herself.

'Till then


Monday, 11 November 2013

From Airedale Terriers to Labradoodles

When I first looked for Winnie, I wasn't looking for a Labradoodle. In fact I wasn't going to have another dog after my last one went to doggie heaven.

She was a 12 year old Airedale Terrier called Lea who had a tumour one day, and a month or so after the vet discovered it I took her back again. As I opened the car door to take her out, the heavens opened and we were soaked. It was as if the angels were crying for her.

I stayed with her and watched the light disappear from her eyes as she slipped into her final peaceful sleep. I cried and cried too, and when I came home my children and I held a wake for her. They had grown up with her, it was such a sad day.

So that was it, no more dogs. I was too devastated, and wouldn't go through that again.

Buut, then you get talking to a friend over lunch one day and become enthusiastic about dogs all over again, and what hope is there? And that's exactly what happened, as you can read in "Hi, I'm "Winnie."

First however, I had to do some research because although I adored, and would dearly love to have another Airedale, (she was the second I'd had), I was getting older and found the grooming a bit much. So a smaller dog was the answer.

Second, Airedales had a "non-shedding" coat, much like a poodle's, but it did need clipping, that's really why I wanted to "downsize", as I'd done the clipping too. So my priorities were coat, size and temperament.

I looked at Welsh Terriers, smaller but very similar to Airedales; Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers, very cool; Wire-Haired Fox Terriers, and Labradoodles. For one reason or another, the only one that was perfect was the miniature Labradoodle!

In the month, yes month, of online research, soul-searching, doubting and not telling anyone my thoughts, I found out a great deal of information on Labradoodles and their origins. In my next few posts, I'll tell you some of what I found about these wonderful dogs.

Sunday, 10 November 2013

Hunny Labradoodle's Helping Hand

It's Monday. I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend. How is it in your neck of the woods? In my neck of Australia it's heating right up. I'm sitting here in a sleeveless top with the fans on thinking about Christmas approaching. It's always hot here on Christmas Day.

But I'm wandering.

My post today is about a compilation of Winnie and Hunny's 4 books and it will be called "Hunny Labradoodle's Helping Hand". In essence, because Hunny is more Arty than Winnie, she gets the credit for helping me put the series together in one volume, hence the title. All I need is a cover and it will be online.

You may have noticed :), that the "Winnie and Hunny Speak" covers are "homemade". They are photos I snapped with my phone in the back yard and in the house. I did this intentionally instead of doing up fancy covers because I wanted readers to see Winnie and Hunny themselves, in their environment.

But Hunny is a little shy, and prefers not to have her photo taken, so I haven't managed to get the "right" shot yet. But I'm patient, and she's a good girl and will oblige today or tomorrow.

In the meantime, I've also been thinking of putting some posts together on Labradoodles generally. How they came to be originally. There was a plan, not just a designer dog plan either. I'll enlighten you next time. In the meantime, here are some of the photos I took yesterday of Hunny. See you tomorrow.

PS: I'm actually thinking the top photo might do the job. I was very lucky to get this one because Hunny usually turns her head before I capture her image. Anyone game to leave a comment? Please :)

Thursday, 7 November 2013

Another Blogger

Another blogger I really like is Laurie Metzger. Here blog, Dog Foster Mom is beautiful and heartwarming. Here's here blog: .

Before Laurie married, she was not a dog person AT ALL, but her husband tried extremely hard to convince her that they should adopt a rescue dog, a big dog, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Ever since, Laurie has been fostering dogs, helping them to rehabilitate from sometimes terrible past situations. She helps them find new forever homes. How wonderful is that?

Laurie had to go back to school to become qualified to do this. She had to move house to help out her new friends. She now lives out of town and drives into her other full-time job in the city. That's right. She has two full-time jobs!

Dog Foster Mom tells the stories of the dogs Laurie fosters and finds new homes for. There are photos of the dogs as well. Sometimes Laurie has a few, often many.

I absolutely love this blog. I know there are other wonderful people out there who do the same; people who care for our deserted, lost, injured pets and wildlife. They have the most generous and compassionate hearts and I think they do a very special job indeed.

Wooof for now, have a grrreat weekend. See you all monday,

Leonie, Hunny and Winnie

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Other Bloggers

I've been reading and following some other dog blogs lately and wanted to share some with you. I've also wanted to say thanks to everyone who has viewed my posts. I'm still new to this game and finding my way around, so it's encouraging to see that I'm getting some views. If anyone feels like commenting on how I could improve my blog, please feel free to do so.

Okay, I said I'd been following some other dog blogs. My fabulous writing coach Angela Booth directed me to 2012's 25 Top Dog Bloggers  and I did a little research into the ones I liked best.

My favourite is All Things Dog Blog It's No 3 on the list but I like it the best because it covers EVERYTHING dog.

The Blog is written by Carrie Boyko and covers strategies for happy dogs and happy families such as pet solutions. If you or your dog needs a problem solved, or you have multiple dogs in your household with issues, Carrie talks about some solutions. She uses green and organic foods and remedies, which I like a lot.

The blog reviews products, has giveaways, events, parties and competitions. Like I said, it covers everything dog. And you can follow the blog on Blogger, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest. There's loads of information on anything you'd want to know, so check it out.

After I viewed the list of 25, which covers mostly USA bloggers, I thought I might see what Aussie dog bloggers were up to. I found this site, which is quite similar to Carrie's above, but of course tailored to us Aussies.  And guess what else I found? If you have a look at the site you'll find that Four Paws PR are introducing the Inaugural Australian Pet Blogger Awards!!

If any of you are Aussie pet bloggers, hop onto the site via the link and enter your blog. You'll have to be quick though because it ends on the 15th of this month. I'm wondering if I should enter! What do you think?

"Till tomorrow,


Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Seating Arrangements

Exerpt from "Chalk and Cheese" Book 4 in the "Winnie and Hunny Speak" short ebook series

Winnie speaks:

...sometimes when we're bored or we want a hug, or for no reason at all, we jump up onto the two-seater where mum sits on the back veranda. That's where she does most of her writing. It faces the garden and it's peaceful.

Usually just one of us jumps up at a time, because it's a TWO-seater, but every now and then, in winter when it can be chilly, we like to snuggle up together.

Some of you may have seen a cartoon which circulated on Facebook which illustrated this perfectly. Erica our eldest spotted it first and sent it to mum. She thought it was hilarious, so did mum. Mum showed us the cartoon on her tablet, and then began explaining it to us.

There's a lady relaxing in an armchair with a glass of wine, her faithful and ever-loving big fur-baby was at her feet. he was thinking that if he was VERY careful, he could ease up onto the armchair and join her without disturbing her. He proceeds to climb up; she queries his intentions with a look. She moves over a little; he carefully climbs completely aboard. She is aghast, entirely squashes into the tiniest space, limbs pointing in all directions, wine long spilled. He is happy saying..."See, she hardly noticed"...

See, this is us. Hunny is on the left, then me, then mum. I think I'm the most squashed. I had to hang my head and front paws over the edge of the seat. It wasn't very comfy and I didn't stay there for very long.

Leonie speaks:

Actually, I was the most squashed. I only had half a cushion to sit on, AND, I don't know how I managed it, but I also took the photo.

And not to be outdone, Hunny wants to post this photo of herself to show off her beautiful colouring and styling too. Isn't she gorgeous! And she's sitting in my spot.

Monday, 4 November 2013

Chalk and Cheese

Today is Melbourne Cup day in Australia, the biggest racing event of the year when punters bet millions, and lose millions on their favourite horse. I bet $2 with my mum, and lost, but that was no great loss, and we had fun. That's what counts.

So here it is, the final ebook in the "Winnie and Hunny Speak" series, and .....ta da..... it's called "Chalk and Cheese" because that's what Hunny and Winnie are. Even their coats are different.

Hunny is VERY cool, calm, collected, and patient. You either have to be around Winnie, or everyone would go crazy. It's because Winnie has such a BIG personality. That's not to say Hunny doesn't, she is such a character herself, but so different. You couldn't have two Labradoodles that are so different.

Hunny loves the laid-back lifestyle, the peace, the quiet, the dignity of living a country-type life you could say. But we live at the beach. It must be because we have a large yard. She is never in a hurry to do anything, except eat, and to tell Winnie when she's had enough of whatever high spirits she's dishing out.

Hunny doesn't care about going out in the rain or getting her paws wet. See, she's a country girl at heart. Winnie hates that kind of stuff. She's a bit more precious about icky things. Winnie is sometimes so boisterous it seems she has enough energy for both of them anyway. so you see, they are perfectly balanced.

At the moment they are both nagging me to serve them dinner. It's bordering on pestering, and it is that time of day.

Just to conclude, I have a photo of trendy Winnie. Here is her ear hair. See how it is layered and coloured? And she hasn't even been to the stylist. Isn't she a lucky girl?

Tomorrow, an excerpt.

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Winnie and Hunny's Top Tips for Parentcare

Today we finished our fourth and last ebook in the Winnie and Hunny Speak series. It's called "Chalk and Cheese." Mum uploaded it to Amazon for us but it's not online yet, it will be tomorrow. Then we'll tell you a little about it.

In the meantime, we'll give you our top 5 tips for parentcare. We noticed that mum's a bit exhausted after her effort of helping us get the books out so we thought it would be a good idea to give others a few tips on how to look after their mum or dad.

Tip #1 Diet. Always make sure they are well fed and watered. Provide wholesome and healthy food, not junk, and never give them too many treats. One a day max. Always remain close at paw when they eat in case of crumbs or crusts which may fall to the ground. These may need vacuuming, if you know what we mean. Be helpful and offer to clean up any leftovers after meals. Green inside is clean inside.

Tip #2 Exercise. Exercise is a must and is as important as a good diet. It is appropriate to exercise daily, 20 minutes as a rule, more is preferable. Parents usually like walking, so if your leash is accessible, make sure you sit by it, bring it to them, or give hints with that certain look or gentle nudge. If that fails to get their attention, do whatever you have to to get them off their butts. Fit is well.

Tip #3 Helping. Ensure that home is cosy and comfortable for them. Sometimes they may need a cushion fluffed up, or a bed made. Sweeping, vacuuming and mopping aren't beyond your abilities, nor is window cleaning, or gardening. Many paws make light work.

Tip #4 Be Happy. There's nothing better for a fur-baby than a happy parent. The way to keep your parents happy is to be happy yourself. Do funny stuff like tricks and getting the "sillies", or being cute, even if you're having a bad day. Soon enough you'll have them laughing and patting you, and you'll be feeling better yourself. What goes around comes around.

Tip #5 Love. This is the most important tip of all. You can do without all the other tips but you can't do without love. You can show your love in so many ways, including the above, but here are some special ones. Give your parents lots of hugs and kisses. Sit/lie next to them, near them, on them. Make eye contact often. Bring them toys and other stuff to play with. Always be super enthusiastic when they come home from work/shopping, get up in the morning. Love is all you need.

These basic 5 tips should keep any parent well cared for. By following these simple tips you will have a loving and faithful companion for many years. If you have trained them well, bonus.

What more could a fur-baby want.

Bye for now,your pals Hunny and Winnie

Friday, 1 November 2013

Yeppoon is where I live...

Just a slight diversion...I thought I'd tell you about where I live.

The background photo you see looks east from Yeppoon towards the "Supermoon" rising over Keppel Bay on the evening of June 23rd this year. I took it with my phone, so the moon doesn't look so big, but hey, I like it.

Yeppoon lies about 50km north of the Tropic of Capricorn on the Capricorn Coast, and that particular full moon was a Capricorn Full Moon. I like such things also.

My home doesn't have a view of the ocean, but I'm about 500m, as the crow flies, from it, with a hill in between. I do have a great backyard though, and that's where I mostly sit and write, Winnie and Hunny never far away. That's where we all are now. It's about 30 degrees, with a warm easterly blowing. Quite humid.

Yeppoon is a small regional town with a VERY laid-back lifestyle. Imagine shorts and t-shirts almost all year round. We have a dry-tropical/subtropical coastal climate with offshore Keppel Islands which make Keppel Bay very shallow and sheltered.

Twenty minutes up the coast are rainforest and pristine beaches, some only accessible by 4WD, they are spectacular! You can go camping, hiking, fishing, snorkelling, diving. The Great Barrier Reef is close by as well.

I don't do any of those (anymore)! If you've read my earlier blogs, you'll know why. But I do love my garden, which is about a hectare, (roughly half an acre I think) and gardening. I manage a little every now and then. Australia has some amazing and interesting native plants, and I used them as much as possible when I started the garden. I now have one that's fairy maintenance free, except for some weeding, re-mulching and fur-baby-disturbance maintenance!

Winters are dry here in Yeppoon, and the garden has to look after itself, so I plant low water-requiring plants. Summer is the wet season, which officially started on the 1st. If you'd like to check out my garden, have a look at my Pinterest Board: My Garden:Dry Tropics.

Next post, more on progress with the "Winnie and Hunny Speak" series.

Bye for now