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Dear Diary: Time machine, magical moments and Princess Eric

Welcome to the inside of my head, August 2023.

I am feeling a bit out of place at the moment or perhaps it is better described as out of time. The world seems such a complicated place to be in. I mentioned a 1970's housing estate as ‘modern’ recently and our youngest said “you know 1970 isn’t modern, don’t you?”, it made me feel old. And both hubby and I are often corrected by the kids (not really kids, they are grown up now!) on our wordage with suggestions like “that word is no longer used and now considered offensive”. The word usually being one that we have always used because we believed it to be the correct and inoffensive version, what do we know? If anyone has a time machine that could nip back to 1985 and drop me off that would be appreciated. 1985 had good music and I love the fashion, it also had no social media, which I feel would be a relaxing break.

Magical moment

Then I had one of those beautiful nature moments last week, perhaps to counter balance my feelings. I dropped youngest off at Fishbourne Roman Palace in Chichester (fabulous place to visit if you get the chance) as he is a volunteer there. Eric comes with us for the car ride and likes to get out at the Palace and have a yomp around the field beside it and loves to pee under the oak tree there. Whilst standing waiting for Eric to finish his investigations a light breeze caught me and took my breath away. It was as if the world stood still, and it was just me and nature. It was a blessing and very much needed. I already loved the energy at the Palace, but that was a little bit special.


Very excited to have finished the draft of the first oracle card deck in the Kitchen Witch series that will be published by the lovely Animal Dreaming Publishing company. The artwork is all done, with thanks to Pete for his hours and hours of painstaking effort! The accompanying booklet is all written and has been sent in for editing. The first deck is Magical Herbs with Magical Foods, Spell Casting and Grimoire decks to follow.

Down time

I am continuing to work my way through the Ben Aaronovitch Rivers of London books, I am on book 3 now and it is just as good as the previous two. TV viewing continues with the re/re/re-watch of Deep Space Nine interspersed with Guy Fieri and his Grocery Games show, the latter we watch when youngest graces us with his presence, he believes Guy is a legend (which he is).

Eric the Princess

I thought it would be nice to tell you a bit about Eric. Eric is our dachshund. He came to us just over four years ago when he was about 4 ½ months old. He had been shipped across from Poland and was being fostered by a family with small children. When we visited to see him sadly the children were pulling him around and generally teasing him. His fur was covered with bald patches, and he cowered when I approached him, it broke my heart. 24 hours later he was living with us.

I grew up with dogs in the home, springer spaniels in fact. When I left home, we had a springer/lab cross and then later on I had another springer. Pete had not grown up with pets and was very wary of dogs so I didn’t think we would ever have one. Until we unexpectedly came across this tiny daxie that needed a home. I was incredibly surprised when Pete suggested we go and take a look. His thoughts were that it would help me deal with the horrendous peri menopause I was going through at the time, and he was right.

The first few months with Eric (named after the great comedian Eric Morecombe) were difficult. I had forgotten how much work a puppy was! He didn’t like any of the food we gave him, and we went through what seemed like hundreds of different foods until we found a local company that supplied food that he liked, he has been eating it ever since (Nurture Them Naturally). Initially we had to put ramps up for him to be able to step out safely into the garden as he was too small to go down the step. He did master going up the stairs indoors but has still never gotten the hang of coming down them. We had to watch him like a hawk in the garden as he took to not only eating all the plants but also the shingle. So much so, that we ended up removing all the shingle from the garden and replacing it with imitation grass. Thankfully he grew out of eating shingle as a snack, and we were able to bring it back to the garden! He didn’t like sleeping on his own and I spent most of the first few months coming downstairs at 3 or 4am and sleeping on the sofa with him lying on my stomach. Eventually he learnt to feel safe in a crate, we never shut the door, and filled it with blankets and it became his sanctuary. Now he sleeps on the sofa or in our study on his bean bag. On the lead training was difficult, when we are outside he will never take or eat a treat. Never under any circumstances will he sit on pavement or stone floors, so he doesn’t sit at the curb, but he does stop and wait now. In fact, he won’t sit on our floors at home, he backs up until his butt reaches a mat!

Originally he hated going for a walk, many a time we ended up carrying him part of the way so that he had to walk back. Even now he won’t go out if it is raining.

Unlike spaniels who can spot a crumb at 20 paces and catch a falling piece of food before it hits the floor, Eric is rather more refined and likes to pick and choose, deciding whether the food item is worthy of his attention or not. He does however, love Spam.

He is not my familiar, but he is a member of our family, a much loved and valued one. He gave me a focus to help me through some of my darkest moments. He also taught Pete and our children to not be uncomfortable with dogs.

He is the least doggy dog I have ever encountered. He is a totally spoilt princess, but Eric changed our lives.

(The white spots you can see in the photo on Eric's head are some of the bald patches in his fur that he had when he arrived)


Join me on my Wednesday morning chats if you are free, replays are on my author fb page and my YT channel.

You can also find me on this blog and on social media. If you think I can help with anything please do reach out.

We are all part of a community and it is an honour to be here with you and to support each other.

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Kitchen Witch sponsor two daxies via the Red Foundation dachshund rescue -


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