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Spot the Caterpillar

13 Jan

My fascination with caterpillars subsided when there wasn’t anymore to be discovered. Partly also, I’ve stopped going out to the garden to specifically look for them because the mozzies would get to my arms and legs.

The two potted plants at the front of the house do not seem to have anymore caterpillars too until recently. It was discovered quite accidentally.

A rather unusual species this time, see if you can spot the caterpillar. I’ll give you a hint: it’s not green and its scientific name is the Geometridae family.

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Looking Back at 2019

31 Dec

Well well… it looks like another year has gone by again. Time to file the memories away to recall later fondly and another set of annual resolutions to make. Or break. But the end of 2019 is much more than another year gone by, it’s the end of a decade!

Looking back, I’ve had my fair share of good memories and heartaches with many things happening in the year. After all, there’s 365 days. What stood out most for me can be summed up to these.

Both girls are all grown up, with one having graduated and continuing on with grad school in the US and the other just starting college in Ireland. Proud parent moments. Then there’s me reaching the milestone big five birthday. Happy me occasion.

My carving hobby resulted in a mixed growth in Gigglesville’s population this year. There were only 13 new Citizens to reach 194 (I couldn’t push myself to reach 200), the Whales grew to 48, with 30 new ones while the Gnomes had only two new giant ones to make three dozen as of 2019. It could be better.

But with this carving activity, there was a price to pay: my aggravated injuries. My golf game suffered as a consequence and for the first time, I find myself not giving the sport any priority anymore. I lost the will to excel when injuries persisted. Hopefully this mindset can change to a more positive one come 2020.

Besides the sports injury, my endometriosis pain was well, a pain to deal with this year. More acute than ever, I was at the mercy of a monthly recurrence, it was dreadful. So I started the 16/8 intermittent fasting diet to manage the painful backache and cramp attacks. With a controlled diet and a list of food to avoid, losing a fair bit of weight along the way was a booster and motivation too besides minimizing the agony. It helped.

Not everything was rosy and good though. My iPad Mini has been wonky and unreliable with each passing day, my MacBook Air had to be resuscitated but nothing compared to losing our beloved English bulldog, Rooney aka official pet number one to old age and sickness. It was the saddest day of our lives and suddenly, the house was emptier than ever and our lives changed.

Looking back, if I were to put 2019 into perspective of a phrase, ‘the good, the bad and the ugly’ aptly summarizes the year for me. Now as I ponder what to expect for the new year and new decade, I hope it will be one that focuses on ‘the good, the better and the best’. No resolutions needed though.

To everyone, here’s wishing you an awesome 2020 ahead, Happy New Year and Goodbye 2019!

Fly Little One

9 Dec
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A week ago, we ‘adopted’ this little fella

Last week, we had an unexpected guest – a baby bird. It fell onto our neighbour’s side of the garden when it was learning how to fly. Luckily hubby rescued our feathered friend before the neighbour’s dog discovered it. We decided to nurse it until it got stronger to be able to take flight. Mummy Bird has been nearby ever since the accident, keeping an eye on us I suppose.

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It’s actually quite a cutie

Over the next few days, we cared for our little feathered friend, feeding it little worms for breakfast and dinner. And it has been eating well, delighting the both of us.

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Getting stronger, it has progressed to eating bird seeds now

It’s been a week already and soon, we will be letting it go. Once it is strong enough and able to fly, we will definitely miss our unexpected temporary pet.

In Memory of…

11 Nov

Today would have been official pet number one’s 12th birthday. Sniffle…

It’s been a month since Rooney’s passing. How time flies! There are days when we get home, I find myself looking out for him expecting a patch of fur lying at the garden terrace when I open the front door. But he’s not there….

We have been keeping busy so that we don’t think too much of the loss. The house has been rather quiet sans the barking or the act of talking to a pet who was literally our third child, our baby. To overcome this, I find myself playing music more often than ever on my iPhone XR. Sometimes I would up the volume on Spotify’s choices for me or simply blast my Music’s playlist so that it’s not so quiet. Sigh…

Happy birthday Roo, you’re in a better place but always in our thoughts and hearts.

Is That a Nose Dinky?

1 Nov

I didn’t realise Dinky my dinosaur ‘grew’ a nose! From the looks of it, it’s a teeny-weeny scab from a scratch of an insect bite. And because of its strategic placement on Dinky’s face, it can pass off as a nose. Hahahaha…

However, I don’t think it’s a mosquito bite because I don’t remember any itch or even scratching my leg. Or maybe there was and I did… I don’t remember. Dinosaurs can be forgetful.

I just thought it’s funny that my Dinky now has a nose, a glowing red one just like Rudolph! Rather cute, no?

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Letting Go

15 Oct

It’s a good thing this weekend I am going away. A timely change in routine in view of the recent heartache. Unfortunately hubby is not coming along as this trip with my high school girlfriends was actually planned ages ago.

I hope being away—albeit a short one—will heal the broken heart to be at peace and accepting with life and the daily routine. Death really grips the heart and we must learn to overcome this or forever be sad or even burdened.

Emptier Nest

14 Oct

The past few days, the home front felt different and odd. Not used to it. The coming home and being home routines are unfamiliar without official pet number one around. The empty nest is now emptier.

No more sight of him waiting for us, no more insistent barks during our dinner time, no more demands to share our fruits or more of his snacks, no more snores or unabashed farts to break the silence, no more presence. In short, no more routines that we are used to. Sniffle…

Rooney was certainly a family member and a very vocal one, not just a pet like the fish or the tortoise, visible but silent.

Sad as it is, this is inevitable. We should be positive and look at the bright side; he lived a good and happy life – giving us many wonderful memories, annoying moments included.

He was a month and a day short of his 12th birthday, far longer than the eight to ten years typical for bull dogs. He will be dearly missed… Sniffle…

Devastated

11 Oct

Yesterday our beloved senior citizen official pet number one, Rooney passed away from an infection and internal health complications. No words…

All Good on the Home Front

5 Jul

Now that the bag delay issue is settled, there are other matters to tend to.

Official pet number one, Rooney, was confused then happy to see us when we got home. Generally all was good on the home front except for two things – the Marimo Moss balls and the cocoon still hanging on the tree in front of the house.

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He loved his new chew toy

The moss balls would need some serious TLC to recover as they have turned brown but this wouldn’t be an issue to revive them. The cocoon is quite a challenge though. It’s been too long at this stage. Did we miss the emerging moment and deceived by the cocoon shell, still hanging up there? Maybe I should brave climbing up the tall ladder to have a closer look. Hmm…

I’m glad I didn’t gain too much weight, only a pound. I thought it would be more considering the 16/8 diet was thrown out the window the minute we arrived at KLIA and had a beer and indulged in snacks at the Premier Lounge before we boarded.

It wasn’t just the things we ate in the US but when we ate which was always late dinners past seven and sometimes even nine or ten at night, hardly at five or six like we normally do back home. And I ate breakfast constantly eating because it was cold and I needed food to fuel the body to keep warm.

Being back means being back to routine and I am pretty sure that extra pound will be shed in no time especially once I get over my jet lag. So it’s great that all’s good on the home front.

Be Silly or Be Happy

11 Jun

Today’s the day we leave! But there are worries, silly ones and several of it…

Silly #1: my cocoon is still hanging on the front tree and it’s been seven weeks since the giant caterpillar morphed into it; way overdue from what I checked online to be at this stage. Why is the moth not emerging? Is the constant rain stunting its metamorphosis? Is it even still alive and okay? I dare not climb up the ladder to check because it’s way too high. Whatever it is, looks like we will miss the moth emerging from the cocoon if it does decide to come out during our time away.

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It’s nice in here, I’m not ready for the world

Silly #2: my 1000 and more Days trek on the Daily Bonus for Candy Crush Soda on the retired iPhone5S will be broken because I am not bringing the phone along. And will the iPhone XR and iPad Mini have the trek broken too being in different time zones? I told myself I should stop this obsession but I just can’t shake it off. Silly.

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Day 1016 for the iPhone5S and Day 1023 for both the iPad Mini and iPhone XR

Silly #3: will Rooney, official pet number one miss us?

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Should I chew on it or not? Hmm…

Silly worries aside, there are some happy reasons too…

Happy #1: the pineapple in the garden. It’s been more than two years that hubby’s been taking care of it, and thank goodness it decided to ripen on time before we leave. Harvested last Friday, the fruit of labor and love weighed a whopping two kilos! Needless to say, the juicy and home-grown pineapple was thoroughly enjoyed.

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Juiciest pineapple ever!

Happy #2: the constant rain seems to be good for the habanero plant for it has thrived well and we had a bumper harvest. So much chillies! I ate a little on Wednesday night and oh my goodness, almost died from the fiery burn. This batch is super duper spicy.

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The spicy level of the reds win hands down over the greens

Happy #3: we will be meeting up with M2 in Amsterdam! Yes, our baby will fly tomorrow from Ireland to meet us at Schiphol. And she will miss a few days of Summer classes which unfortunately can’t be helped. I feel it’s important for her to attend her only sister’s Commencement ceremony, hence the plan as such.

Happy #4: we will finally be seeing M1. The last time the family unit was complete was when she came back for Christmas in 2017, so that’s like a year and a half since we last saw our firstborn in person. The weekly Skype video sessions do not count. Can’t wait. A 12 hours and 40 minutes flight for the first leg, then a four-hour transit before the second leg of 10 hours and 17 minutes flight (hopefully no delays) before the family will be whole again. Yay!!!

I guess with the happy reasons outweighing the silly ones, I shouldn’t be too silly and just be happy.