Cat Stew

Sometimes wonderful views take your breath away. This was taken on our last holiday. While my partner and son slept I would sneak out for an early morning run. The run would take me along a path which ran along the edge of Lake Thun. It was just stunning.

Sometimes it’s other things that take your breath away.

Last night I had made a stew. I left my steaming plate of food on the kitchen table while I delivered our son his stew and 2 tons of tomato ketchup. Crash. On my return to the kitchen I had an out of body experience. We have a very accident prone boy cat. Yes you have guessed it. He was lying in my stew. Waiter there appears to be a cat in my food. He was covered in gravy and vegetables completely oblivious to the world. He seemed most puzzled when I pushed him onto the floor. He was even more puzzled and slightly terrified as the dog decided to feast on the four legged plate. My option b meal, a cuppa soup was far less appetising.

I’m still finding bits of stew strewn around the house.

Usually the dog won’t have anything to do with the boy cat. His bestie is the girl cat. However today it’s a different story. Now he’s discovered the boy cats talent as a mobile dinner plate. He is hopefully following him around trying to be friends. Let’s hope the boy cat has learnt his lesson as tonight it’s a curry.

Pets feel

Our pets give us so much entertainment and bring much needed smiles to this broken house. They have really helped get us through the last couple of years. Yes they can be terrors but humans can be oh so much worse….

But I think one pet needs a special mention. They big boy cat. He is such a softy. Even when the cats could venture outside he was not really an apex predator. Never worked out how to hunt. The girl cat would frequently bring him some live offerings. But the boy cat would carefully paw them, then roll over – I suspect he was hoping the vole would tickle his tummy. Strangely the vole would scurry off into the hedge counting it’s blessings. The boy cat would frequently get stuck in the tree requiring rescue. He was petrified of the cat flap so we had to cover it up. He had a favourite type of toy. He would only play with our son’s Dr Who Dalek plastic figures – nothing else. You would see him searching the toy box in a desperate attempt to find the elusive evil masterminds. He has worked out how to open door handles so he gets free run of the house.

But he was also inseparable from my partner. He would follow her about and he always seemed to be on her lap. When my partner went out the cat would sit at the front window and wait for hours until she came back. Sadly you can’t explain bereavement to a cat. I’ve got no idea what the boy cat is thinking. I can’t confirm that he is grieving like we are. But I know one thing for a fact. Every night he sleeps where our partner used to sleep and you frequently see him at the front window. I suspect he’s waiting for her to return.

Nighttime Visitor

In bed waiting for sleep to take me off for a few hours but nothing is happening. So just listening to the wind and rain battering the window. Then…

The sound of pattering dog feet coming closer, quickly developing into sprint mode. In those circumstances all you can do is just brace for impact.

But not needed this time. Yes he launched himself onto my bed but then stopped a few inches from my face. As my eyes adjusted to the darkness a strange vision was revealed. Pup carrying one of his toys, a battered reindeer. He looked at me for a few seconds then carefully dropped the teddy next to my head. And with that the pup jumped off the head and I heard him sprint back into his bed. Few minutes later I could hear him snoring.

What was I supposed to do with Mr Reindeer. So I tucked Mr Reindeer in bed next to me and I suppose he slept well – certainly better than me.

So fast

Once again in the wonderful, wacky world of parenting you get another curveball question.

Dad I know a man can love a man or a woman or be single … are there any other options”.

I’m sure the response to that question was on page 675 of the parenting manual. I wish……

I don’t know how many times I have heard the line, “kids grow up so fast”. That is so true. What happened to the Teletubby or BananaSpilts questions. What happened to the where does Spongebob live. I could answer them.

Then you look at the pets. It only seemed yesterday when we had two lovely, friendly kittens – who just played with a ball of wool all day. Now they rip the curtains off the wall and are top of the food chain in our part of the world.

Or the dog, once so cute and shy. Spending his time snuggling up to cuddly toys. Now currently caked in mud last seen trying to dig his way to Australia.

Yes I dream of days gone by now. Happier times. Simpler times. Safer times. But as much I dream those days are just memories now. So back to today. Where is that parenting manual, where is page 675, and where is that answer to that question.

Sorry sorry sorry – I suspect this post was just a poor excuse to show some cute baby animal photos.

I want that hat

Halloween update.

Just finished watching ParaNorman. My son loves the film. It makes him cry but also laugh. I think the themes of being an outcast and loss resonate with him. It does the same to me.

Mr Trumper the Party Pumpkin has lost his hat. The puppy kept wagging his tail, going crazy and knocking the pumpkins party hat off. Eventually we gave up and tried the hat on the dog. Dog is currently trotting around the house like he is the bees knees. Got to find Trumper a new hat, don’t want him losing his temper. Not on Halloween.


One of the most frustrating thing about autism is that nothing seems to be certain. You can say the same about Dyslexia, Dyspraxia and ADHD. The stock reply to questions seems to be “probably”. It feels a bit like that old beer advert “Carlsberg, probably the best lager in the world ”

  • Is Autism hereditary – probably
  • Are environmental impacts associated with Autism – probably
  • Are Autism and Dyspraxia linked – probably
  • Will the behavioural aspects of Aspergers become more pronounced as he gets older – probably
  • Is his Dyslexia linked to his Aspergers – probably
  • Is ADHD linked to Aspergers – probably
  • Will a coach or therapist help with Autism – probably
  • Is a main stream education the best option – probably
  • Could going to a special school help – probably
  • Would home education be more suited – probably
  • Will the loss of his mum have a long term impact on his Aspergers – probably
  • Will he get any specialist bereavement counselling – probably
  • Would educational psychologist be able to provide a tailored educational programme for our son – probably
  • Will an educational psychologist assess our son – probably
  • Could medication help – probably
  • Could medication make it worse – probably
  • Is Aspergers and Sleep Disorders linked – probably
  • Could the use of a reading Scanning pen help with his Dyslexia – probably
  • Could Occupational Therapy help with Dyslexia – probably
  • Could Speech Therapy help with Dyslexia – probably
  • Could the use of a reading scanning pen hinder any potential reading improvements – probably
  • Will the use of coloured lenses help with Dyslexia – probably
  • Have we now ruled out that coloured lenses will not help – probably
  • Will my son get any additional help during his secondary school life – probably
  • Are we trying every available route to try and unlock his full potential- probably

Probably, probably, probably….

Apart from the definite diagnosis everything else seems to have been on a probably basis. That’s frustrating for a parent as all you want to do is try and find the best course of action for your child. It’s more frustrating for the child as he or she tries to come to terms with life and the future.

But one thing is not probably, it’s not maybe, it’s definitely. When your child has had a bad day at school. When the parent is crying inside with the frustration of not being able to take your child’s sadness and anxiety away. When you need a lift.

The pets never let you down. They are our Ghostbusters our Captain America. Guaranteed to save the day and lift the spirits. They don’t need a proton pack or a shield. Just a few cushions will do the job. What a hero. Son and Dad happy again – probably for the rest of the day.