And they call it Poppy Love…

In my previous post I mentioned I had two things keeping me very busy recently and if you know me personally, you will have seen the numerous images I have posted everywhere and therefore know exactly what I am talking about.

For those of you that don’t know, a few weeks, my boyfriend and I added a new member to our family – Poppy the puppy.

Poppy (1)

We decided that we wanted a second puppy while we were still living in Singapore, to give our dog Archie a friend and act as company for him while we were out at work. We realised it wouldn’t be easy to do this while in Singapore, so waited until we came back to the UK so we could buy a puppy from a reputable breeder. In Singapore the puppies are brought in from Australia mainly, plus there are always rumours of puppy mills and added to that was the fact that Springer Spaniels are pretty rare out there – apparently the Singapore police force actually gets theirs from the UK.

As I am home during the day at the moment (not quite an unemployed bum, I do some freelance work from home), we felt it would be the perfect time to get the puppy.

The first day I brought Poppy home, I realised I had completely forgotten how much work puppies can be. Add to that the fact that Archie completely ignored me and Poppy for the first 24 hours, it was fun times all round.

Poppy has since settled herself in fairly well, Archie doesn’t ignore her (or me) anymore, but it’s hard for Archie not to ignore her when she is hanging off your ears, or nipping at your legs.

Everything I have read says it will take a couple of weeks at least before the dogs fall in love and snuggle up together peacefully on the bed and I for one can’t wait for that. But at the minute, if I am not spending long periods outside in the cold trying to convince the little one to be a good girl and go to the toilet, I’m refereeing the two, feeding them or cleaning up accidents on the floor. It has actually become my full time job, unfortunately it is incredibly badly paid and the only benefits are the cuddles I get from both the dogs during rare moments of quiet.

Poppy & Archie

I wouldn’t however give either of them up for the world. I just hope they feel the same way about each other soon…

It’s a dog’s life…

 

Today was one of the loveliest days I have had in some time – we went to pick out a little sister for Archie.

I cannot begin to tell you how much I enjoyed the afternoon I spent with six tiny English Springer Spaniels, four Sprocker puppies and the eight adult Springer and Cocker spaniels we met before we left.

All the puppies were beautiful and I had a hard time to pick between them, so it was actually my boyfriend who made the decision this time. When we found Archie, he was the only puppy we saw, therefore it was simply a decision of taking him or not, although I do like to think even if I’d had a choice I would have picked him out…

At one point during the afternoon, all six of the puppies decided to come and take a snooze on my lap, it was so adorable. Then the Sprockers were let loose and they just ran all over the other pups. It really was a lot of fun.

Puppy naps

Anyway, we have our puppy picked and she will be with us in just under three weeks, so enough time to get ourselves ready for a new little terror running around the house. I can’t wait!

Our new puppy

Sweet home… Manchester

Christmas Sparkle

As I write this blog, I am eating hot Warburtons crumpets, slathered in butter, while drinking a cup of Yorkshire Tea, wearing brushed cotton pyjamas, thermal socks and a jumper for extra warmth – and I couldn’t be happier.

You would think that after moving from hot and sticky Singapore back to ‘the coldest winter in 60 years’ if you believe the papers, would be something of a struggle, but I am loving every single layer of clothing I am having to wear, and believe me, there are plenty of layers…

I was a bit worried it would take me a while to adjust, but to be honest it feels at the moment like I was never away. Manchester is my home and I am so glad to be back. I thought I would miss the sun shining every day, but it’s been so long since I have seen proper seasons, I have found I am enjoying the grey and miserable weather just as much.

Although, that isn’t to say I don’t miss parts of my life in Singapore. I miss my friends, who I know are continuing the tradition of the Christmas cheese party (not just a Christmas thing, it’s just any excuse for cheese). I miss my job, I was lucky enough to really enjoy the work I did and I met a lot of great people through it, far too many to list here. I also miss the beauty wonderland that is Sephora, it is unfortunately only in London, but I do now have Boots back, so I am hoping that will satisfy all my needs again…

I think it has definitely helped to have come back in the run up to Christmas, although I still haven’t put my tree up. Anyone who knows me will realise this is quite unusual, usually it is up the first weekend of December, but I only got the tree and decorations last week and I haven’t quite finished decorating the room it will be placed in just yet – it will definitely be up and twinkling by the weekend, I promise.

It is really nice being able to walk down the road and see my neighbour’s houses lit up by Christmas trees in the windows, and to see the lights up across town, plus during my first week back Father Christmas came to visit.

But it isn’t all fun and games, I do have the serious task of finding a new job. Unfortunately, this time of year isn’t really the best time to be looking for work so I am considering other routes to take so that I can start earning a wage again. I definitely need something to occupy my brain and my time, otherwise I will find myself watching the Jeremy Kyle Show and This Morning everyday in my pyjamas while spending too much money on ASOS and anywhere else that sells pretty things… Not good for my state of mind, or my bank balance!

So, I had better get back to the job search, but I will be back soon to let you know how I am getting on – and probably to show you all the pretty things I have bought myself.

These are my confessions, part two…

I have been a very bad blogger, yet again. You’d think I would learn, especially with all the nice things I would like for Christmas, to be a good girl and keep this blog up to date.

To provide some background to the radio silence from the last few weeks, my life has gone through a pretty major upheaval… I am writing this blog post from the comfort of my sofa in Manchester, after I made the final move from Singapore a couple of weeks ago.

Everything went a little bit crazy in the weeks after bringing back the pooch – he was fine in case anyone was worried. He spent five weeks in Norfolk with my family, enjoying the large flat fields where he could run around off his lead without any worry of being fined…

My last two weeks in Singapore went by so quickly, mostly because I had a number of large events that I was working on, plus a lot of work in the house before we left it, farewells with friends and fighting a virus that decided to attack on my very last week.

Now I’m back I’m in a whirlwind of job hunting, decorating my house to make it feel like home again and seeing all my friends and family again.

It really is great to be back…

Dog on a plane…

I am writing this post at Singapore Changi airport, waiting to board a plane to take me back to the UK for four days. Yes, four whole days, just enough time to completely screw up my body clock, so I will no doubt ridiculously tired the whole time I am at home and then for the whole of next week when I am back in Singapore.

I promise you there is a good reason for this, I’m not one of those people that enjoys pain… My whirlwind trip is all for my beloved pooch, Archie.

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My time in Singapore is due to come to an end very soon, and my boyfriend and I decided it made sense to send Archie home sooner as we have a few things to do in my last few weeks that don’t mix particularly well with dogs. So, I very nicely asked my parents if they would mind looking after him for three weeks, then it was four weeks and now it is around five. I’m lucky my parents love me – and Archie of course.

So, while I am waiting, kind of patiently, for my gate to open, my gorgeous little man is somewhere possibly nearby, possibly already on the plane, no doubt wondering why I have abandoned him in a strange place. Or he is probably sleeping. I on the other hand am a little sick with worry, hoping he is ok, not scared to death and also hoping he is actually on the same plane as I am… I’ll know for definite in around 15 hours, by which point I will be in London, so if Archie isn’t, that’s going to be a problem.

But as everyone keeps telling me, I am sure he will be fine. Yep, sure of it. Absolutely.

I foresee a long sleepless flight…

I’ll leave you with my last view of Archie, taken by Bellina at Pet Embassy, who have effortlessly handled all the pre-flight paperwork, check-ups and everything else that comes with flying Archie back home.

See you in London little man x

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You see a mousetrap, I see free cheese and a challenge…

This past week has absolutely rushed past me, and it is only because I am taking the morning off work that I am able to get this post written.

My work and personal life are currently competing for the title of what can cause me the most stressed, although last week I was able to go out and be a little fancy for the evening. I was invited to attend a charity viewing of Agatha Christie’s The Mousetrap, shown in the beautiful theatre at Raffles Hotel Singapore.

The Mousetrap

The evening started off wet, with Singapore experiencing one of the heaviest downpours in a long time and it began right around the time I needed to get a taxi. Well, of course it did, I was wearing this new and very pretty tea-length dress from ASOS and yes, while it is knee-length on the model, I am much shorter, so it is tea-length on me… I also had on my nude coloured heeled sandals, which are made from a lovely soft velvety-like fabric. So yes, of course it rained.

Shoepershoe challenge

As anyone who lives in Singapore knows, when it starts to rain, 90 per cent of all taxis either become very busy anywhere that you are not, or just disappear from the roads altogether. In the end I gave up trying to book a cab and magically as I left the office, two taxis with green lights appeared, so I didn’t end up too wet or arrive too late.

The event was an incredibly glamorous affair, with some women clearly having spent the whole day getting ready, unlike myself – a shower at the gym after work and a quick change in my office toilets… There were stunning long and short dresses, I spied some very real diamond and sapphire jewellery and very intricate hair dos. While I may have felt a little out of place in my ASOS dress and Dorothy Perkins shoes, I soon forgot that by spending most of my time people watching, I could have done it all night but there was a play to watch.

Having never seen The Mousetrap before, I spent most of the evening trying to figure out ‘whodunnit?’ and had suspicions about two or three people, which actually turned out to be fairly close to the mark. You won’t be getting any spoilers from me though, the reason it has been so successful over the last 60 years is because theatre-goers are sworn to secrecy over who the murderer is, so if you want to know, you will have to go and see it for yourself.

After the show, we were treated to an amazing three course dinner in Raffles Ballroom, including this mouse-shaped dessert.

Mousetrap dessert

It was one of those nights that don’t really happen that often, well for me anyway, so I made sure to enjoy every minute. My only disappointment, there was no cheese to be seen anywhere…

x

Mousetrap quote from Scroobius Pip

From Kinky Hearts to Love Hearts

Love Hearts

 

One of the things I find quite difficult about living so far from home is the food cravings.

Singapore imports pretty much everything they sell here and what you can find in a supermarket one week, will likely not be there the next.

I am resigned to the fact i will never be able to find things like Hovis bread or Greggs sausage rolls here but every now and then I will come across something I thought I would never see, like Lucozade.

I love the sticky psychedelic coloured drink and it’s a very good day when I spy a couple of bottles in the supermarket.

Mostly, I can make do with alternatives to my cravings. If I want Cherry Coke, I’ll just have to find some Dr Pepper. If I want a Greggs sausage roll I home bake some instead.

The problem is when you really want something very specific that the problems start. About a month ago I got one such craving for Love Hearts. And of course, I couldn’t find them anywhere.

It may seem like a weird craving and a strange thing to obsess about, but it’s little things like this that will make me homesick. At home I can walk to the nearest newsagents, petrol station or supermarket and pick up a packet. No problem at all.

So basically Love Hearts were making me homesick and I moaned about it to a fellow Brit at my work. As she, like me, lives thousands of miles from home she understands the random cravings and said she would keep an eye out.

I had pretty much given up by this point, I had no hope of finding them. Then I walked into my friend’s office a few days ago and she presented me with an envelope with a note that read “found these on my travels on Saturday (Candy Empire VivoCity) Enjoy!” Not only was I incredibly touched she had actually bought me the sweets – she could have just told me where she had seen them – but also I was just really happy to finally have these elusive sweets in my hand.

So, now I have two whole packets of (Giant!) Love Hearts to eat. Not sure when I will be busting them open, think I’ll just savour the fact that I have them for a while and break them out when I am really in need of that home comfort sugar fix.