Tag Archives: Cat

Simply Sunflowers

This blog is one week old today, it’s been a really rich week! Thank you so much to everyone who is reading, following, liking, commenting and sharing, you have given me loads of encouragement!

This morning, I once more found myself out in the garden enjoying a bright start to the day…. After a week, I’m pretty sure that’s my favourite “routine” daily nurture, it’s happened often enough 😀

I’m also discovering more and more ways of topping up during the day: Some are planned – *gasp* “More than one moment of nurturing your self, is that allowed?” Yes!

Some are spontaneous – and they now seem to feel more nurturing than before, perhaps because I’m more conscious of their nurturing qualities? That seems possible, like the nurture radar has been recalibrated to notice more of what has actually always been there.

Overall, week one has felt very … nurturing (well, good!) and I’ve loved sharing it. How’s your daily nurture going? Any patterns emerging? Ready for week 2 of Creating Daily Nurture?

Sunflower seeds emerging

My biggest sunflower

Cat and sunflower

Gardening assistant lifted up to see sunflower…

Cat paws sunflower

… She was rather fascinated by it!

Young sunflower head

A younger sunflower, seeds still forming

Today’s Nurture: The Story of A Very Special Cat

I love mountains. In particular, the Black Mountains on the eastern edge of the Brecon Beacons National Park grabbed my heart strings in about 2001.

I often stayed at the Capel-y-ffin Youth Hostel, in the beautiful Ewyas valley, looking out at the Offa’s Dyke footpath and the border between England and Wales.

Offa's Dyke Path seen from Capel-y-ffin

Looking out onto Offa’s Dyke from the farm

I visited for a walking weekend, and from that visit ended up running guided walks and navigation training courses at the youth hostel. As a bonus (and as a cat-lover) the hostel had two cats, black and white Gypsy and distinguished grey and white Bertie.

Years later, after the hostel was sold into private ownership, I returned there to host the mountain retreats that encompass every aspect of what I love doing most. This work reflects the deepest nurture for me and, I think, the deepest, most gentle and respectful nurture for those that visit.

And when I returned in 2009, there was Bertie, happily voting with his paws, staying with the place he’d chosen to live.

Bertie Cat at his farm

Bertie Cat in his element, July 2009

With smiles from his previous owner, I now care for him and pay his few vet and food bills. As I don’t live at the farm, I also found myself hating leaving him… I’d have a fabulous week with my guests and then blub extensively as I left the mountains, cat and farm that I love so much.

So after a few years, thinking about the bit that I could do, I went looking for a Bertie look-a-like. (A first step…!)

Through a great friend, I heard of a grey and white kitten on a farm in Exmoor. I drove down without hesitation, and met what became Bertie Junior. She’s a girl… but she’s called Bertie anyway.

Grey White Farm Cat, Bertie Junior, first meeting

Love at first sight… Bertie Junior

Even more amazingly, I took a punt and brought her with me to the farm in Wales for the first retreat after I’d got her. As a kitten, she took to the spacious farm rooms and scampered around happily. And as soon as she had had all her inoculations, she met Bertie Cat. It was instant friendship.

Two grey and white farm cats meet

September 2011 – First meeting of the two Berties

Little Bertie loved Bertie Cat to bits, followed him everywhere. Dear Bertie Cat had the patience of a Saint and put up with her pouncing and bouncing about. They are – and continue to be – the best of friends.

Bertie Cats share and armchair

May I share your armchair please?

They are not related, they see each other for only one week a month, and Bertie Junior happily naps her way through a 3 hour commute to get to the farm… in short, they are utterly not cat like. If you are a cat person, you will understand that they nurture in a way that I could never have conceived!

I made this film in August 2012, whilst enjoying a quiet and restful few days at the farm for myself. Watching it nurtures me on many levels. Maybe it will for some of you too.

Either way, these two cats prove that whatever you assume… you may get waaaay more than you’d ever imagined!!