Cuddle cats

Every working day my black cat tries to get on my lap while I work at the dining table. The space between lap and table is not high enough that she can fit underneath the table while my chair is pulled up. This means that if she does make it onto my lap, I have to sit back and then I can’t type properly. So, nowadays I pull up the chair next to me and place it against mine and she finally settles down curled up against me.

Occasionally she will seize a moment, when I have moved or walked away and sat back down again, and she will claim my lap after all…

The cuddling cat struggle is real! It’s always great when my daughter comes home from school, she can then take over cat-sitting duties for a while (and loves it).

All cats we’ve had have always liked being on us or near us but I don’t think we’ve ever had a cat who insists this much on lying on us, any of us, all day long.

Our other cat, in his old age (he’s 15), also likes getting in the way to best position himself for cuddles, especially with my son whom he sleeps with most nights. Mr Esther jr was trying to get new sheets onto his bed yesterday, he walked out of the room for just a few seconds and returned to this…

As our red cat is old and sometimes takes a while to settle down, we tend to not want to move him when he finally does find a spot. Tough luck for him this time around when Mr Esther jr wanted to finish making up the bed, cuddles would have to wait for a later time.

Speaking of cuddle cats… I recently came across this absolutely adorable picture of Tom Ellis with one of his cats…

He never wanted cats until his wife wore him down, the love is real now…

Richard Armitage in his latest interview (thanks Servetus for the screenshots) says he may want to attempt starting a family by getting a dog first. I know he’s more of a dog than cat person…

…. but he sure looks nice with a cat and may I suggest that a cat might also do very nicely in his New York apartment?

Mr Esther, like Tom Ellis originally and Richard Armitage, never wanted cats either until I was able to convince him otherwise. He has now become a cat person too, despite them getting in the way of reading the newspaper, and they can be useful as iPad stands too.

I can attest that, with all that is going on in this world, the best battles you can have are cuddle battles with your cats!

Perfect day

Last night I went to bed with a big smile on my face, it had been a perfect day and made me think of this song as I fell asleep…

Mr Esther and I slept in quite long yesterday morning after having a late night, meaning we had a nice relaxed start to the day. Mr Esther junior had to go to work from 3pm (internship at a hotel) and mini-me had a party to go to in the evening but our day was wide open and we didn’t want to do anything useful around the house. It was quickly decided that the four of us would go out for a lunch outside on the beach, close to where junior works. We had missed junior on our holiday and doing lunch with him like that, as a family, felt like a holiday in itself. That was a perfect day moment and lunch was good too!

After lunch, junior went to work. Mr Esther and I wanted to walk on the beach and mini-me wanted to walk into town on her own. So, we split up, arranged a time to meet up again and off we went. When it was hot these past two weeks or so, the beach here had been extremely crowded according to the news, but yesterday it was about 20 Celsius (high 60s Fahrenheit), with some rain in the morning and early afternoon and very windy.

There were quite a few people around but it wasn’t crowded, which made the distance keeping easy. Mr Esther is growing his beard and hair in quarantine and it felt weird to him to feel his beard and hair flapping around in the wind, which was funny to see.

We walked on the beach for about an hour, reminiscing on when we had first walked and kissed on that same beach as a new couple. It turned the afternoon into an unexpected romantic beach walk, which was another perfect day moment.

We met up with mini-me again for drinks and then walked to where junior works to say hi. Another perfect day moment, to see him being professional and an awesome employee at the health center part of the hotel.

We drove home where mini-me got ready for her party. She had arranged that I drop her and her friend off and that her friend’s mother would pick the girls up again at midnight. That meant that Mr Esther and I also had an evening to ourselves! We reserved a spot in a restaurant we hadn’t been to before in our home town and biked there so that we could also partake of some wine. Parking our bikes against a bridge made for a typical Dutch image…

The restaurant turned out to be great. Very few people present, good distancing of tables and ample ventilation. We took our time with a 3 course meal, I only took a picture of the dessert…

… but all of it had been delicious. We were stuffed by the end but it had been worth it. Yes, a romantic dinner at a restaurant was another perfect day moment.

Then last night just before I finally went to sleep I also caught the LOROS and Richard Armitage thank you messages for the auction fund raising…

That was another little moment right there.

So yes, yesterday was pretty perfect! Today on the other hand, I need to do a huge load of laundry folding… I guess not all days can be perfect.

Evil genius & rambling on

So, Richard tweeted this the other day (doing a screen shot in case it gets deleted again)…

… and an evil genius image popped up in my head, I thought it was of a cartoon. Googled it and found it…

Apparently Evil Genius is a video game. Naturally based on the villain of villains, Blofeld from the Bond movies, so it seems…

Maybe Richie has been watching too many Bonds and has been playing a few too many video games during lockdown? Yeah… best to focus on good things (instead of supposed evil geniuses), like Guylty’s RA birthday auction that is coming up in August, see here.

Yesterday felt like the true first day of my holiday, as it was a Monday and I didn’t have to work! Went shopping in the city of Utrecht with mini-me. We figured if the city was too busy, we’d just turn back, but it wasn’t too busy. We started with lunch at a café along the canal (totally overpriced for what we got, but the spot was awesome and yes, that’s a paddle boarder on the water)…

There was this little tunnel next to where we ate which looked awesome (but I wouldn’t wanna be caught there after dark)…

Mini-me finally found the ‘mom-jeans’ she wanted (she had tried ordering online but everything she ordered wasn’t right and sent back) and in the evening we even did face masks. Now, I never do face masks, but mini-me loves them, so we bought a few and did them together for a change. I look so happy.

It was lovely bonding time with my daughter. We also had some interesting conversations about boys and men as she told me that apparently she and her friends had been catcalled by 30 something year old men last week and she had told them to shut the eff up, which she would never have dared to do if she’d been on her own. They quickly left them alone but it goes to show that male chauvinism and sexism is nowhere near gone and sadly a new generation of young women has to deal with this as well. Her fave internet joke this week that she shared with me was: “I went to the doctor today to find out if I’m having a baby girl or an abortion.” It’s cruel but I admit to laughing at that one and how sad is that?

In final news, last night I also managed to finish a third Pimpernel fan video set to Nat King Cole singing Smile (last video up on my Scarlet Pimpernel page). Now that is out of my system, time to move on to other things like tidying up the house today. I hate doing that and am procrastinating with this blog post but Mr Esther has now started the tidying, so I feel guilty now and really have to get going… This was a bit of a rambling post, sorry for that.

And a graduation as well…

Not only was it our son’s 19th birthday today…

This evening we also had my daughter’s secondary school graduation ceremony. Socially distanced, so only two people from the same household were allowed to come. That meant sadly that our son couldn’t attend and the grandparents couldn’t either, but at least Mr Esther and I could go.

The director of mini-me’s school section gave a speech, the school principal had taped a video speech and then after that every graduating kid got their own little speech from the class mentor. Our daughter’s speech was about her being very lively with her ADHD and how that didn’t keep her from getting very good grades. Mini-me is going on to higher level secondary education and the teacher commented on how that should be no problem whatsoever for her. She also added that mini-me is easy and fun to talk to.

After all the speeches for each kid, the diplomas were signed and we had to leave again; mini-me was guided onto the red carpet, of course.

We of course had to celebrate such a day, so we went out for dinner afterwards at an Argentinian restaurant my son had picked out for us to eat at. We sat in a nicely secluded, socially-distanced corner and had lovely food.

It was a good end to a festive day.

Sunrise, sunset

The new Mach was challenge is to do something with sunshine. As usual, I at first didn’t know what to do but then I remembered that Mr Esther, mini-Esther and I drove to the beach one evening a week ago to watch the sunset. So, I decided to use the pretty pictures I took then for this challenge. It was still pretty quiet on the beach and that evening was also a little chilly…

… but it was beautiful, with some kite surfers surfing the waves…

Mini-me walked to the water, while Mr Esther and I snuggled into our chairs to watch the sun go down…

… and then mini-me walked back to us, with the sun setting behind her…

… and we watched the sun slowly slide away beyond the horizon.

Mini-me made a timelapse film of the last part of the sunset on her phone. That thing that looks like a bird at the beginning is actually a kite surfer…

When we’re on the beach and I see the sun setting like that, I usually think two things. First of all I think of this little Dutch tongue twister that says: “Ik heb de zon in de zee zien zinken en zij zei zisss” which translates to: “I saw the sun sink into the sea and she said sisss.” Secondly, I think of this song from Fiddler on the Roof

Bittersweet and beautiful and oh my goodness, when my kids leave home one day, I’ll be a mess… But I won’t think of that now! I’ll just stare at beautiful sunsets instead.