Remember when you were a kid and you pretended to be a wizard or a magician and the magic word was usually ‘Abracadabra’? Well, it turns out that it actually has relevance, it’s not just a made up word.
Abracadabra is actually a Hebrew phrase that means ‘I create what I speak’, so you can see that saying that particular magic work is not just gobbledegook but an actual relevant term. Pretty cool huh?
Today’s wonderful Wednesday is all about stray dogs. The Netherlands, land of wooden clogs and tulips has become the first country ever to tackle and win their stray dog population.
So how did they do it? There are several ways actually, like raising the tax on buying new puppies to the point of ridiculous, embracing the ‘adopt not shop’ mindset and ensuring that all neutering is free. Yes, you read that right, FREE! That will eradicate a huge number of stray dogs as there will be so few unwanted pregnancies. Here in England it’s hard to believe that they are neutering for free when it makes up such a high percentage of a Veterinary practices income.
They also have a darn good animal control system, so when you call them they actually turn up! Like, for real, they go and rescue the dog and bring it to a shelter or a foster home. They take this very seriously, even giving those who are abusing or mistreating their animals a hefty fine or even prison time, which they actually enforce!
Their final tool in the fight against strays is education. Yes, it’s a cliché, but their children are taught from a young age how to appropriately care for animals and what the laws are surrounding them. Education is the key to a lot of things in the world and when used properly it has astounding results.
This year for my birthday I decided to ask for something a little different, I asked for people to get me their favourite book.
Why? Because not only do I get to read cool books I may not have thought about before but also you get to know the person giving you the book a little better.
Maybe you didn’t know they like horror? Or maybe you were surprised that they like romcoms? It gives you a little insight to that person and helps you to get to know them better.
This was my book haul!
I got ‘The Glass Castle’ from my friend Lindsay, ‘The Railway Children’ from my friend Tilly and the rest from my friend Hannah who wanted to give me her favourites from several genres. I felt both spoilt and utterly blessed to have such lovely friends.
You like this idea? Here is a handy dandy graphic for you to use on any social media platform you wish.
Did you know there is a medical condition called Sulfhemoglobinemia that turns your blood green? I know!! It sounds like something from a good scifi book but its not, it’s an actual condition!
Can you imagine having your blood taken and the vial filling up with green blood? It would be both cool and scary! It’s actually a problem with hydrogen sulfide being absorbed into the gut causing issues with circulation and a blueish tinge to the skin, especially the lips (cyanosis). At least, this is what it is thought to be, there is no firm diagnosis as to why this occurs. But you will be pleased to know its incredibly rare.
So if you do happen to bleed green the chances are you are not an alien, you are just a little poorly and go and get yourself checked out……….then contact me, because I want to see it! Haha!
The world is an odd place during a pandemic, everyone seems a little sadder and a little more fragile. It got me thinking, I realised that it’s not the big things I’ve been missing, it’s the small things. Smiling at people on the street. Telling random strangers that they look nice (I am a nightmare for this, if someone looks nice I HAVE to tell them). Hugging my friends. Lots of little things.
So I challenge you dear friends to find something small that you are grateful for, or something you are looking forward to doing each day, and record it in whatever fashion you like, even if it’s just in your head. For the next 30 days we are going to play ‘All the small things’. I’ve even set up a handy dandy sheet for you to fill in if you are so inclined, you can find that below.
Have you ever tried embroidery? It’s really fun, not as easy as it looks but still fun. This isn’t my first run in with embroidery, we have crossed paths before.
You will need –
You can draw out your design on the tshirt or item you have chosen. Now, I did draw my design on, but, I went rogue. It was like the spirit of the embroidery overtook me and I had to follow it!
I didn’t use any of the fancy pants stitches, I literally just started in the centre and worked my way out. Below you can see the progression of the flowers. There really isn’t any reason to give a full detailed tutorial, there isn’t much to say, its more of a visual thing.
It’s a simple little flower design, I didn’t want to be jazzy and show off (mainly because this is the extent of my mad embroidery skills!).
It might be a nice hobby to take up during lockdown (does anyone else say that in a dramatic voice? Just me?), simple and supposedly calming, except for when you get a stupid knot in the stupid thread and you cant get it through the stupid hole! Just saying…..
Dear internet, it really doesn’t get any cuter than this!
Captain Tom Moore of Yorkshire, UK , is a World War 2 Veteran that decided to support the National Health Service during the Covid-19 pandemic by walking 100 laps of his garden. He is 99 years old (100 tomorrow, I have sent him a birthday card), has had both cancer and a broken hip, he walks with a frame and completed his challenge in 10 lap chunks.
The whole nation has got behind Captain Tom, he set up a just giving page, which you can find here, in order to raise £1000 for the National Health Service during this crisis. Captain Tom exceeded his target and the last time I checked it stood at over £25million!
Captain Tom is a true gentleman, he has old fashioned values and manners that the Queen will be proud of. Both Prince William and PM Boris Johnson have given him video messages thanking him for both his service in the war and also his fundraising for the NHS. There is a push from the British public to get him a knighthood and I back this all the way. Knight Captain Tom!
A lovely uplifting story in the midst of a lockdown, thank you Captain Tom!
Journaling is a little bit like marmite, people either seem to love it or to hate it. I have a mixed relationship with journaling, I love it but I don’t do it very often. I’m easily distracted, like a dog when they see a squirrel or a magpie when they see something shiny. I’m full of good ideas though, and one of those ideas was to provide you with journal prompts that you can start on the first of every month, kind of like a journal-along-thing. Even if you loathe it, maybe try giving it a go and see if your opinions change, if they don’t then so be it, accept it and move on, no judgement here.
Journaling isn’t always about writing, for me being a word lover I love to write loads when I get going but I also like to doodle. I have seen some fantastic examples of both written and artistic journals on both Instagram and Pinterest. There is room for everyone here, no judgement is made for poor handwriting, spelling or crud doodling (looking at myself here). Just give it a go, what have you got to loose?
You don’t have to have a specific notebook for journaling, any one is fine (unless you need an excuse to buy a new journal, in which case, cool, I’ve got your back, go get that shiny new piece of stationery!). Personally I change my opinion depending on what mood I’m in, I have lined, dotted and plain journals. I’ve even written in some of them!!
Journal inspiration –
These prompts are designed so that you can use them to write about or also as a doodle challenge if you prefer. Or even as a mixed media journal, that would be fun! A friend of mine is awesome at junk journaling (Shout out to Ambear), I cant get the hang of it myself.
There is a lady on Instagram, you can find her here, and she creates the most beautiful journal pages, here are a couple of examples for you –
Stunning right? They don’t have to be aesthetically pleasing, its your journal, if you want to scribble on the pages and write ‘poo’ over and over that’s your choice, this is about YOU. Self-care and all that jazz!
To show you that it doesn’t have to be perfect to be fun I have chosen to handwrite these prompts. Have fun with them people!
Let me see what you create, find me on Instagram (@chickenbeeblog) and tag me or use the hashtag #CBJournalalong.
Have you ever noticed on yourself or someone else there is sometimes a little hole in the top of the ear that looks almost like a pin prick? It turns out that 0.9% of people in England have this where as only 0.1% of people in America have this.
I have it, its called Preauricular Sinus or Pit which is usually harmless (in some people it may need to be looked at as it can lead to infections, but the pit has to be reasonably sized in order to do this – I’m not medically trained so do not take my word for it!). The picture above is my left ear, the pit is super tiny, it got smaller as I got older, but I’ve always wondered what it was?
An evolutionary scientist dude called Neil Shubin thinks it’s a remnant of a time when we had gills. Yep. Gills. And although this theory is not scientifically tested I have decided to agree with him because that would make me A MERMAID!! I have a freakin left over gill. Mermaid.
How many other mer-people are out there? Give me a shout my fellow fish!
As we are celebrating the Earth today I thought I would bring you the story of Molly, who is saving the planet, one piece of plastic at a time.
Labradors are wonderful dogs, they are loyal companions, very trainable, full of love and have a slight kleptomaniac side. Molly’s owner Fliss Cater took full advantage of their tendencies and positively encouraged her 2 year old lab to collect random pieces of rubbish and bring them back to her.
Miss Cater taught Molly to retrieve pieces of plastic and other rubbish from their local beach in a bid to help stop the amount of rubbish discarded there being dragged away with the tide. And all Molly expects in return is to be told she is a good girl.
Molly can now be found on her local beach in England cleaning up after mucky humans, racing against the tide and having a blast while doing it.
Well done Fliss and thank you Molly (Who’s a good girl? Who’s a good girl? You are! Yes you are!) for cleaning up Britain’s beaches.
We could all take a leaf out of Molly’s book and be a little bit more conscientious with our rubbish. So this Earth Day, appreciate this lovely dog and maybe make a plan to clean up a beach near you, when we are not being grounded!