We lost our Chewie at just 6 years of age. Why do we get pets?

Why do we get pets?
As if driven by an elusive need
We desire to keep them away from threats
A parenting instinct we must heed

With them all worries our heart forgets
We seek their acceptance their company
As if trying to redeem our past regrets
And we don’t want them to ever feel lonely

We watch them grow their nature is art
Adorable, curious, creative, playful
Like a beam of sunlight they play their part
Surprise us, treat us, and always grateful

They trust and search for our reassurance
Their soothing company, pure and innocent
Our love and care permeates their essence
Yet they remain eternally vigilant

Two different minds sharing one moment in time
Altruistic perhaps we expect nothing in return
Their reliance in us makes a rapid climb
Their presence makes a fire in us burn

So why do we get pets?
Towards them our actions are selfless
By now we have all placed our bets
And we assure them our bond is endless

While enjoying this feeling of belonging
We provide a home that is safe and warm
Too busy to see the blatant warning
That in the distance there is a storm

It’s an unstopable force, we’re made to connect
There’s something in our genes we can’t quantify
We overcome the walls of dialect
And our unique affection helps us get by

Then the tyranny of time comes to reject
This sweet embrace we learnt to rely
And leaves our hearts broken and wrecked
With its dark unexpected and aching goodbye

For Chewie
January 2013 – 11th of February 2019

Thanks for so many good memories, buddy. We miss you.

Watch the video for this post…

Summary:
The video begins with me meowing at Chewie off camera to entice him to meow back, and he does. We are in Cardiff, Wales.
(6 seconds) Priddy stalks Chewie making him assume his warrior stance.
(13 seconds) I’m at the computer with Chewie on lap and meows back after my unseen invite. we did this a lot.
(16 seconds) Priddy discovers the mouse cursor moves and is fascinated by it.
(18 seconds) Chewie plays with a shoe lace
(21 seconds) A Syma toy helicopter is no match for Chewie’s hunting chops
(25 seconds) Chewie kneading in bed. We did this a lot.
(37 seconds) Chewie hunting imaginary things on top of a sofa
(42 seconds) Priddy chases a laser point now that Chewie is tired of doing so
(47 seconds) An exhausted Priddy recovering from chasing a feather toy
(50 seconds) Chewie creating a storm in a glass of water. At this stage, we couldn’t have drinks unattended. They’d have fur and impurities added, and would sometimes be toppled over.
(1 minute) A rare moment where he’s allowed to groom her, she didn’t like him too much once he became bigger than her.
(1:06) They are watching a bird outside the window.
(1:10) It was a very foggy day and it made the beam visible which fascinated him.
(1:14) He’s trying to persuade me to go outside for a walk.
(1:17) Chewie meows back thanks to a squirrel on a post, he was so charmed by it.
(1:19) He’s eating sitting down after a play session. Utter laziness!
(1:26) They are both eating in the motorhome after a nice walk outside.
(1:31) Susana volunteers to walk some dogs and is being led by a good boye.
(1:33) Chewie got a little tiny round mouse. I gave it back to him.
(1:35) Another spazzy play session in the motorhome.
(1:37) Walking among chickens in Portugal. Here he was still suspicious of them.
(1:38) A farm in Wales where we often walked them. So many birds and things happening around.
(1:40) Same farm, just another walk with some loves.
(1:43) Chewing spazzing out on a bed due to my arm moving under the sheets. One of our favourite things to do.
(1:49) Kneading on my lap in the motorhome while I’m at the computer. Great times!
Many things happened at this point. We sold the motorhome, tried something that didn’t work, lost a lot of money chasing our dreams, and went back to Cardiff renting a small flat and start everything again.
(1:57) Here Chewie had been to the vets due to a lump in is hind leg. We had really bad news after test results and knew our days together were numbered.
(2:01) We rented a house with a garden so we could take them outside again. My back is injured and he joined me on the sofa.
(2:03) Susana is at the computer with Chewie keeping her company in the motorhome.
(2:06) We’re driving the motorhome back to Wales through Spain and they’re both sleeping.
(2:08) Chewie comes for some reassurance at the farm in Wales.
(2:13) Priddy is making a grooming video for her YouTube channel. What a diva!
(2:15) Priddy attacks an innocent bystander just because reasons!
(2:18) One of the houses we rented so they could have a safe garden to enjoy again. Chewie plays on the bed with his leg bandaged.
(2:21) He now has some difficulty walking.
(2:24) We’re returning home after our last outing with him. I kinda knew this had been the last time we shared a sky together.
(2:35) Back to footage of a very young Chewie.

Thanks for so many great moments. We miss you so much.

When the going gets tough, the tough get resilient!

Some days are just darker. 

Everything you want to achieve still seems too far away, even though you’ve been trying for so long. You feel like you are punching brick walls, fighting unwinnable battles. You are drained of energy, your brain is mush and your heart is joyless. 

This last couple of days have been like that for me. So, I retreated into myself  for a bit and ‘nested’.

If like us, you are pursuing and unconventional lifestyle, an alternative way to earn your money, different from mainstream expectations, you know you have additional challenges, like finding financial stability or constantly have to defend your choices when faced with other people’s ignorance and prejudice. So, when your efforts don’t amount to any results or you have to deal with negative people all the time, it does get to you, right?

So, what can you do? Do you quit? Do you give in to sadness?NOOOO!!!!!!!

Continue reading “When the going gets tough, the tough get resilient!”

Meet ‘Our Travelling Family’

How can you resist these smiling faces?

Welcome to our inspiration corner, guys! 

This is the true story of a charming, unique family that wants no more than to travel the world helping out whoever needs an extra pair of hands (or 5).

It is also a story about daring to turn your dreams into reality, no matter if you have to choose the road less traveled, teaching your children about compassion and the joy found in the simple things in life.

Karen was kind enough to put up with us and answer some of our questions:

Continue reading “Meet ‘Our Travelling Family’”

Motorhome Kitchen – The Essentials

 

Yummy chicken for lunch on a cold day

Just because your kitchen space decreased drastically in size, you shouldn’t automatically assume that you won’t be able to cook great tasting, nutritious meals any more. All you need to make everything work is a little creativity, meal planning and organization.

Our motorhome ‘Charlize’ had a tiny kitchenette, that consisted of 2 top and 2 bottom cupboards, a very limited counter top , 3 gas hobs and a sink. That doesn’t leave much room for food preparation.  

‘Charlize’s” kitchenette

When you think that everything kitchen related had to fit there as well, plus cleaning supplies and kitty food/litter stuff, storage was a huge challenge too. 

First, let’s talk kitchen essentials. Check out our list of chosen items below.

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Chewie & Pretty – Cats and Van Life

Our cats have been a part of our little family for 4 years now. There were only 2 months old when we brought them home and it was love at first cuddle!

Chewie

Chewie, a male white tabby cat, came first – a tiny little thing, very ‘meowyand demanding, always wanting company and attention, no matter what.

Today, he’s your typical spoiled teddybear scaredy-cat, who loves feathers, cuddles and long naps. He is the quieter of the two.

Pretty

‘Pretty’, a female tortoiseshell cat, was brought home 2 weeks later. She kept her cool and her distance from everyone in the beginning but eventually surrendered to her new loving family.

Today, she is the challenging one, always wanting to go out and explore, preferably on her own, no humans to cramp her style.

She loves kneading on woolly blankies, chasing wiggly strings and birds.

Continue reading “Chewie & Pretty – Cats and Van Life”

Travelling: Arrabida Mountains, Portugal

Arrabida Mountains

Have you ever noticed that most people, when planning their trips, tend to dream about exotic and faraway destinations and forsake all  the beauty in our their own backyards?

We all do that, we do that too …

Nevertheless, it’s never to late to rediscover your home country – be it the area surrounding your home, your closest busy big city or quiet nature spot. Small, shorter trips have a lot of advantages:

  • It’s easier to travel there – you can take your own car, the train, the bus or even walk, if it’s really close by;
  • You are often surprised by what you discover about your own culture and country;
  • You can still travel if you are on a tight budget – it’s much cheaper than travelling abroad, you don’t have to worry about accommodation if you can return on the same day or even about meals if you bring your own;
  • You take your family and friends with you – (short) road trip!!
  • You don’t have to go too far, so you can plan around your working time.

Continue reading “Travelling: Arrabida Mountains, Portugal”