Slinky Malinki

A few weeks ago I found myself Googling the name Slinky Malinki. Why? ,you may ask! Well we had just brought home with us a bright red pet carrier, containing a little black cat. I had not planned on getting another cat quite so soon. Our vocal adventuress Mrs Tibbs passed away in the summer. She was 15, though still bombing round the house like a wild thing and jumping up and down walls and stealing several neighbors moggie’s food. It was a shock when she fell ill and the house felt so much quieter without her. 😦

A friend alerted me to the plight of ‘Slinky’ whose owner had had to move into rented accommodation, where no cats were allowed. I saw a picture of an adorable looking black kitty with a shock of white under her chin and was immediately smitten.When we went to see her, we were told about Slinky’s sad start to life. She had been one of a box of several very young kittens abandoned outside a school one cold winter 3 years ago. None of the kittens survived except for her. Her owner had hand reared her so she was obviously a little fighter. It turned out her full name was ‘Slinky Malinki.’
Feeling curious I googled the name……….and discovered she is named after Slinky Malinki ,a mischevious black cat in a children’s story book. πŸ™‚

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This Slinky is quite a character. A poem about him goes like this…

Slinky Malinki was blacker than black
A stalking and lurking adventurous cat
He had bright yellow eyes and a warbling wail
And a kink at the end of his very long tail

He was cheeky and cheerful
Friendly and fun
He’d chase after leaves
And he’d roll in the sun

But at night he was wicked and fiendish and sly
Through the moonlight and shadows he’d prowl and pry
What was he up to?
At night to be brief, Slinky Malinki turned into a THIEF!

Lynley Dodd

My Slinky is still getting used to her new life here. Like her namesake she seems to come alive at night and this is when she demands attention by nudging and rubbing against us. Of course we haven’t let her go out yet. I’m seriously considering keeping her in until after Christmas so she becomes properly accustomed to her new surroundings. I have heard she is a bit of a mouser so who knows what lovely presents she may bring us!

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I’m looking forward to sharing our lives with Slinky and seeing how her character develops. πŸ™‚

slinky catflaps

Frosty Morning.

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I have the day off so thought I would make the most of this morning with a walk down the river. Yes I know I do need to vary my walks. But I find it quite interesting to see how quickly the same landscape changes from one season to the next. Also I wanted to photograph a bullfinch that lives in a little copse by the river….but of course he eluded me once again. I did see my friend Sarah’s labs Billy & Bailey though with their walker Harley. πŸ™‚

Frosty Rose Hips.
Frosty Rose Hips.
Magpie
Magpie
Carpet of leaves.
Carpet of leaves.
Snow Berries.
Snow Berries.
Mallards.
Mallards.
Robin.
Robin.
Rook.
Rook.
Nuthatch.
Nuthatch.
B & B.
B & B.
I believe this is called a Selfie.
I believe this is called a Selfie.
Graffiti.
Graffiti.

A Room With A View.

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Do you like my view? This is the view from the front bedroom, the view I wake up to every day. I always imagined my favorite view would be one of the sea. But I guess I am a bit of a home-bod. Some people are not very impressed with the fact that mostly all I can see is a big red brick chimney!

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I quite like the chimney and the industrial vista. The mill is no longer running but there is talk of it being made into apartments. Its a listed building so maybe one of those apartments will have a chimney running through the middle of its front bedroom. πŸ™‚ I like the fact that I can see Pendle Hill in the distance , where I grew up.

I can hear gulls too…..as a few of them tend to congregate on the mill roof. Listening to them in the morning does kind of make me believe i’m on the coast.

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And yesterday I purchased this incredible painting ( thanks to the generousity of some of my lovely friends) aptly titled ‘Waves’ from a little gallery near where we live. The artist in residence enjoys painting ‘Sea Views’ and this one was done in the cornish village of st Ives. It has pride of place in the front bedroom……so I now have two amazing views to admire when I get up in the morning.

What is your favourite View?

Cute Cats and Cake. :)

I love cake of course and I’m a big puss cat fan, so when I celebrated my BIG Birthday last week I had to have an amazing Birthday cake….or two. πŸ™‚

I was lucky enough to celebrate with a vintage tea party at my favorite Alice In Wonderland inspired tea rooms Callooh! Callay!in my home town. They made me a fabulous chocolate cake with candy pink and white striped icing and a very handsome purple Cheshire cat on top. He was even grinning. πŸ™‚ I was glad they limited the number of candles!

My Cheshire Cat Cake. :)
My Cheshire Cat Cake. πŸ™‚

A couple of days later I went with my family to a lovely country pub in the nearby village of Downham for even more celebrations. This time my sister Yvonne and my friend Becky surprised me with yet another amazing cake!

My gorgeous Teacup Cake. :)
My gorgeous Teacup Cake. πŸ™‚

This very cute cake was made by a new little bakery , VANILLAin Clitheroe who bake bespoke cake creations and cup cakes. Look at all the thought that was put into the design. All my friends and family know I have an obsession with vintage china and tea cups. So this delicious chocolate ( yes I adore chocolate too! ) cake was made in the shape of a tea cup and saucer. There is a darling kitty inside the cup and a little owl on the base. The Owl and the Pussycat! There are also tiny sea shells made from icing, decorating the base. I adore the sea side. My loved ones know me so well!

Loving my cake!
Loving my cake!

What would be your ideal Birthday Cake ?

My Birthday Night Away in Manchester.

Malmaison Hotel.
Malmaison Hotel.

I thought for my November #take12trips post I would show you some pictures from my surprise Birthday trip to Manchester. πŸ™‚

My good friend Becky arranged everything. I have been thoroughly spoiled!

Our transport to Manchester was a stretch  Limo. We had champagne!
Our transport to Manchester was a stretch Limo. We had champagne!
Our destination was the Malmaison Hotel, Piccadilly. Here is the bar area.
Our destination was the Malmaison Hotel, Piccadilly. Here is the bar area.
our comfy bed. :)
our comfy bed. πŸ™‚
Cocktails at the Malmaison.
Cocktails at the Malmaison.
Before each segment of the trip I had to open an envelope with a clue about what we were doing next!
Before each segment of the trip I had to open an envelope with a clue about what we were doing next!
We had dinner at Opus One in the Radisson, Peter st. Check out the giant chess pieces.
We had dinner at Opus One in the Radisson, Peter st. Check out the giant chess pieces.
The Pre-theatre Dinner Menu.
The Pre-theatre Dinner Menu.
My yummy starter ~ crab spring rolls with sweet chilli and garlic.
My yummy starter ~ crab spring rolls with sweet chilli and garlic.

The Menu was of course one big clue. We went to see a musical at the Opera House. πŸ™‚

Here we are after the Show.
Here we are after the Show.

Singin In The Rain has recently opened at the Opera House which is just round the corner from the restaurant. It was an amazing show , complete with lots of splashing of the audience. Take your brolly if your seated in the first few rows.

On Saturday we had a lovely continental breakfast then spent most of the day exploring the Christmas markets and drinking hot mugs of gluhwein. The markets are well worth a visit as they are very festive and brimming full of unusual foods and gifts.

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Thanks to Becky for arranging such an amazing weekend. It was fantastic. :))

A Very Merry Unbirthday Party. :)

My sister and I before the guests arrived.
My sister and I before the guests arrived.

As I was celebrating a BIG Birthday this month I decided to treat myself and my friends to a vintage tea party at my favorite tea rooms Callooh Callay in Clitheroe. Callooh Callay is of course a line in the poem ‘Jabberwocky’ featured in ‘Alice Through The Looking Glass.’

Oh Frabjous Day, Callooh! Callay!

So to tie in with the Wonderland theme of the tea rooms I asked my friends to dress either in Vintage clothes ( any era), tea dresses or characters from Alice In Wonderland. I was going to have my own Mad Hatters Tea Party !
Before the party my friend Becky and sister Yvonne came over to mine to get ready and we enjoyed a couple of glasses of Babysham garnished with cocktail cherries. How very retro πŸ™‚

I had my hair done in a 1950s style.
I had my hair done in a 1950s style.

We all wore outfits inspired by the 1950’s. Becky bought a very swishy swing dress adorned with red cherries, I wore a polka dotted version of a wiggle dress and Yvonne found a cute tea dress off ebay.

Enjoying our Babychams.
Enjoying our Babychams.

The table was laid with beautiful vintage china. playing cards hung from the ceiling.
The table was laid with beautiful vintage china. playing cards hung from the ceiling.

A Cheshire Cat Teapot.
A Cheshire Cat Teapot.

My friend Kaye searching for her street on the floor map of our home town.
My friend Kaye searching for her street on the floor map of our home town.

For the tea party we were served delicious sandwiches and quiche on china cake stands, tasty chicken waldorf salad and butternut squosh salad and then a sublime selection of cakes ~ scones with clotted cream and jam, Bakewell tart and chocolate brownies. Callooh Callay doesn’t serve alcohol but you can bring your own for private parties , so I made sure to buy in some fizz. πŸ™‚

Scones and strawberries dipped in chocolate.
Scones and strawberries dipped in chocolate.
Little bags of sweets were   provided for all the guests.
Little bags of sweets were
provided for all the guests.
What a spread!
What a spread!

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My friends all looked so beautiful and really made an effort which was fantastic. I had an amazing time. Look at my cake !

Liz brings in the cake.
Liz brings in the cake.
My Cheshire Cat Cake !
My Cheshire Cat Cake !

Liz at Callooh! Callay! and her staff did a fabulous job of making my Very Merry UnBirthday Party an evening to remember. There was such attention to detail ~ silly party games,a fun quiz, Giant tissue flowers, Alice In Wonderland animation playing on a big screen etc. I suspect I missed some of the decoration as I was having such an amazing time. Thank you Callooh ! Callay !

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Bronte’s, Black Cats and Vistorians in Haworth.

The Parsonage in Haworth was the home of the Bronte's.
The Parsonage in Haworth was the home of the Bronte’s.

Today we spent a couple of hours walking round the cobbled streets of Haworth. I love visiting though its been a couple of years. On previous occasions it has usually been very bleak and windy up there but today the sun was shining. I actually managed to persuade the other half to take a tour of the parsonage with me. πŸ™‚ The parsonage was of course the home of the Bronte family for many years. As children Charlotte, Emily, Anne and their brother Branwell lived, played, drew,wrote and wandered the moors here.

The Black Bull which Branwell Bronte often frequented.
The Black Bull which Branwell Bronte often frequented.

Before the tour we had a wander round. There are some deliciously old’e world’y shops along the cobbled main street. Lotions and potions galore ( and beautiful vintage inspired tea dresses too ) in Rose & Co Apothecary and old fashioned toffees in Mrs Beightons Sweet Shop. πŸ™‚ There are even a couple of vintage shops but unfortunately they were shut today. I pressed my nose to the glass with longing when I spied some beautiful teacups in the window of Kate’s Curiosities. sigh….

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We also stopped for some lunch at Gascoigne’s Steam Brewing Company Cafe, Bar and Bistro. This is a micro brewery with its own bar and serves yummy grub too. I tried their speciality Pork Pie in mushy peas with mint sauce. Winter warming nosh !

The Bar in Gascoignes.
The Bar in Gascoignes.
Pie and Peas.
Pie and Peas.
Museum sign.
Museum sign.

Before we went into the museum we had a little walk round the grave yard. The Bronte family themselves are all buried in the crypt ( except Anne who is buried in Scarbrough, where she died ) so there were no Bronte headstones. A rather large furry cat was prowling the cemetery and he was quite a character. Sorry i couldn’t resist taking photo’s. I decided to call him Heathcliffe !

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It costs Β£7 to look round the Bronte museum in the Parsonage which I thought was well worth it as the ticket is actually valid for twelve months. You can reuse it within that time span as much as you like. Until 12th January there is actually a rather quirky exhibition on ( see photo above ) at the Museum. ‘Capturing The Brontes’ by Charlotte Cory is a fun and what she calls ‘Vistorian ‘ way of looking at the literary families lives in Haworth. Charlotte combines the use of vintage victorian calling cards and portraits of stuffed animals. Crazily kooky oil paintings of various ladies and gents superimposed with duck and fox heads are dotted round the various rooms and a giant stuffed giraffe graces the study. Apparently the Queen owns a Cory image of a Queen Corgi ! The exhibition continues at the Long and Ryle Gallery in London through February. Here is a very sneaky peek in Mr Brontes room. Feel a bit naughty as your not supposed to take photographs.

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Getting away from the Vistoriana exhibition ,the museum is set out with lots of information about all the Bronte family and plenty of exhibits including a dress worn by Charlotte Bronte and water colours they painted and manuscripts they wrote. I loved reading about their pets. Emily’s beloved dog ‘Keeper’ pined for her years after her death.He was quite famous himself long before Greyfriar’s Bobby.

Here are a few more pictures taken in the grounds of the Parsonage. It was really such an honor to walk round the home of the authors of such masterpieces as Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights and Agnes Grey. πŸ™‚

The Parsonage through the hips.
The Parsonage through the hips.
Vistorians in the window.
Vistorians in the window.
Statues of the Bronte sisters.
Statues of the Bronte sisters.
The Church in Haworth.
The Church in Haworth.

Before we left Haworth I had a hankering for baked goods so we indulged in spicy apple cake at the Cobble and Clay tearooms. :0)

Cobbles and Clay Tearooms.
Cobbles and Clay Tearooms.
I see Cobbles. :)
I see Cobbles. πŸ™‚
Nom Nom !
Nom Nom !

There’s all sorts going on in Haworth on the weekends running up to Christmas I noticed including a Victorian Christmas market ( 16th & 17th Nov), Steampunk Weekend ( 23rd &24th Nov) and Victorian weekend ( 7th & 8th Dec ) and lots more. Makes me want to visit all over again. πŸ™‚

Chick Flick Classics ~~ Roman Holiday.

I thought I would continue with my Classic Chick Flick series with a charming romantic comedy from the 1950’s. Audrey Hepburn won an academy award for Best Actress. She plays alongside a rather handsome Gregory Peck in Roman Holiday ( 1953 ).

Roman Holiday.
Roman Holiday.

Audrey Hepburn stars as Princess Ann, European Royalty on a public relations tour of the continent. Feeling tired and bored of endless social engagements she longs to experience Rome, where she is currently staying,as just an ordinary tourist. One night her doctor and advisers give her an injection to help her sleep but it is very slow at kicking in. The princess escapes the royal palace in the back of a delivery truck and is thrown into the hustle and bustle of late night Rome. Unfortunately she is soon feeling extremely sleepy and starts snoozing away on a park bench.

Princess Ann.
Princess Ann.
The Morning after.
The Morning after.

Luckily she is found by Gregory Peck’s journalist ‘Joe Bradley’ who thinking she has had to much wine, lets her sleep in his apartment. Waking late the next day he rushes to work knowing that he has missed his morning appointment ~ attending a press conference to interview a certain Royal visitor to Rome, Princess Ann. Unaware that the stranger he left snoring away is in fact the princess herself ! That is until he sees her picture on the front of the morning papers, along with a cover up story about the princess suddenly falling ill. Joe realizes he may have the chance of a big scoop …..if only he can keep his identity hidden from the hooky playing Royal. He hotfoots it back home.

Ann confesses to Joe that she is in fact a princess and he offers to show her the sights of the city. He also discreetly requests the help of a photographer pal who has an extraordinary amount of cameras hidden up his sleeve including one hidden in a cigarette lighter. Together they hope to get a story on what the princess likes to get up to in her spare time.

The princess has a hair cut.
The princess has a hair cut.
Dare you put your hand in the 'Mouth of Truth' ?
Dare you put your hand in the ‘Mouth of Truth’ ?
Scooter Ride.
Scooter Ride.
Publicity shot for the film.
Publicity shot for the film.
Historical Rome.
Historical Rome.
The film was shot entirely on location in Rome.
The film was shot entirely on location in Rome.

Of course they find the princess absolutely delightful. Who could not? What follows are japes and scrapes and fun and laughter in the beautiful Italian Capital. And Joe and Ann discover they have feelings for each other. But will Joe get his scoop?, will Ann run away with him ? or will she decide that her royal duties come before true love…….?

Dancing.
Dancing.
Falling in Love.
Falling in Love.

I loved the film but that is no surprise as I am a Audrey Hepburn fan. I loved seeing the sights of Rome too. I wonder if they are all still there? Does the Mouth of Truth really exist? I shall have to visit one day. πŸ™‚

November Nature.

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I’m never quite sure whether to class November as Autumn or Winter. This morning when I took our Jake for a walk round the park, frost covered the leaves and grass and nipped at my fingers. The church bells were ringing for Rememberence Sunday and squirrels were foraging for hidden acorns. But by this afternoon when I actually remembered to take my camera out, the sunshine had thawed everything. It was really busy too. Everyone was out and about making the most of the weather which although nice, proved annoying when I was trying to take a picture of a very shy bullfinch. Alas I could not get the shot. So you will have to make do with the obligatory robin. πŸ™‚

The Sheep are never shy.
The Sheep are never shy.
Golden Leaves.
Golden Leaves.
Under the Bridge.
Under the Bridge.
This way to the River.
This way to the River.
Flower Husk.
Flower Husk.

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River Ribble, Edisford.
River Ribble, Edisford.
Blackbird.
Blackbird.
Edisford Bridge.
Edisford Bridge.
Coal tit
Coal tit
Pendle Hill
Pendle Hill
Long Tailed tits.
Long Tailed tits.
Bobbing Dipper.
Bobbing Dipper.
Robin red breast.
Robin red breast.
Graffiti on the way home.
Graffiti on the way home.

#6 Win a stay in the Duke!

Wow I love the idea of staying somewhere so cozy and quirky so i have rereblogged this competition from the gorgeous Spring Parc in Cornwall. All you need to do is like their facebook page and share the competition, to be in with a chance of winning. πŸ™‚

Spring Park

Hello all, good morning! Today is National Stress relief day and so I think I will make you all aware of the little competition we are running to win a stay in the Duke. Now I can’t vouch for everyone but I find the Duke and his private meadow one of the most relaxing places ever. Whether it be lying in the sun on the grass, sitting with a little glass of red wine by the wood burner on a rainy evening or chatting with friends around the camp fire when I am in the Duke I feel all my worries melt away……..

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So if you would like to win a two night break in the beautiful Duke all you need to do is like our Facebook page, and if you get a chance share our competition with your friends. Once we reach 800 likes we will be choosing…

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