Thursday, 26 March 2015

Cuteness Overload!

What better time could there be to visit a garden center than at the outset of spring? Seedlings are shooting out of the earth, plants boast full new buds, and some already look radiant in full bloom. And then of course, there are the animals and birds.
Archie the cat
I visited a garden center this afternoon and despite all of the things clamoring for my attention, what made me stop in my tracks were the baby chicks...and the baby ducks...and the little dwarf rabbits. In fact there was just so much cuteness surrounding me I couldn't decide what I loved the most! Standing there, I found myself deciding which ones I'd have if I irrationally took them home now and turned my garden into a farmyard. For the ducklings I'd have the three that were asleep in the corner, as for the chicks I'd go for three fluffy yellow ones. Then there were the rabbits. Now that's a tough decision. There were two sitting together, one almost on top of the other really, and they were both so fluffy. One was white with speckles of light brown and the other was a rabbity version of my cat Archie. The resemblance was uncanny! If he had a cousin in the bunny rabbit world then for certain this was he.
Yes I'd have loved to take them all home, I suppose it's a good job there weren't any kittens else I may not have been able to stop myself!

Catherine Walker is the author of The True Story of a Not So Crazy Cat lady available now in paperback and eBook.

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Town Cat, Country Cat

I have just returned from visiting my sister. She lives a few hours away with her boyfriend and their cat in a pretty French town. She's quite a cook so I was certainly well fed during my stay and I particularly enjoyed the home-made cheesecake. But used to the pace of country life I am always struck by the differences between my home and hers. Instead of the hooting and tooting of owls, the steady hum of cars outside the window in all I hear at night and the street lights cast a constant yellow glow over everything.
In the same way life is also very different for her cat compared to mine back at home. Whereas my four legged companions roam the fields and forests, napping in the hedgerows and chasing butterflies, her cat lives indoors. She is the queen of that house, bossing her owners about as she steals the best seats in the house or demanding that they open the door that leads into the conservatory so she can tease the neighbour's dog through the window. She's a particularly stroppy madam if I'm honest, and she's not keen on visitors who enter her realm. I sometimes wonder if she would enjoy a visit to the country, to roam freely outdoors with grass beneath her feet and not a car in sight but perhaps in reality the vast openness would scare her. I know for a fact that in reverse my own cats would not like to live in a world with gates and boundaries.
By the end of my short stay I was ready to head home and as soon as the car pulled onto the gravel drive my cat Debbie appeared, greeting me back, and not far behind her was Roux. I always enjoy a trip away but in my heart I know that, like my cats, I belong in the country too.

Catherine Walker is the author of The True Story of a Not So Crazy Cat Lady available now in paperback and eBook!

Sunday, 8 March 2015

The Best of Friends

Here in the French countryside life has a relaxed pace. When I take a stroll down the lane it is rare for even a car to pass by, I'm more likely to bump into one of the neighbours who has decided, like myself, to take advantage of the spring sunshine and go for a walk. We exchange pleasantries, sometimes they even give me a dozen eggs fresh from their chickens in their back garden. Today when I was out walking, that was exactly what happened.

The neighbour in question is an elderly lady, eightly years old and widowed almost fifteen years ago. She rarely leaves the vicinity and her life is a quiet one. I smile whenever I see her approach because never very far away is her little cat.

It was the cat that adopted her rather than the other way around, a couple of years back. It turned up out of the blue one day and sat on her doorstep. The old lady at first thought it was one of mine, I have a few after all. I told her I'd never seen the cat before but would be happy to take care of it, but this little cat had already decided who her owner should be. She followed the old lady (who'd never had a cat before) around from day one, into the garden, up the lane, everywhere! Initially the old lady was bemused. She didn't know what to make of her new friend who'd attached itself to her like a shadow, but bit by bit she began to soften and one day a food bowl appeared on her front porch full of cat biscuits...and then a little cat bed.

Now the two of them are always seen together, today being no exception, and they make me smile every time. It was as though that little cat knew that the old lady was lonely, that she needed a companion, and she was the one who would help her. Just like my neighbour, we don't always know what it is we're missing until it finds us and I think that that little cat might just have changed an old lady's life.

Catherine Walker is the author of The True Story of a Not So Crazy Cat lady available now in paperback and eBook.

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

BlogPaws 2015 finalist!!

Have you heard? I still can't quite believe it! The True Story of a Not So Crazy Cat Lady blog is a finalist in the BlogPaws Nose to Nose awards 2015! Along with three others, my blog has been named a finalist in the Best New Pet Blog category and I'm over the moon! In May at the conference in Nashville they will announce the winners but winner or not I am so chuffed to have gotten this far.
I started this blog back in summer 2014 with a love of two things; writing and my cats. From this concoction was born my book The True Story of a Not So Crazy Cat Lady, a labor of love which took a good eighteen months to write and was eventually published in October 2014.
As all pet lovers know, our four-legged friends are very important in our lives and I have learnt a lot since finding that litter of kittens all of those years ago. They offer us companionship, support, and unconditional love. Equally they leave great holes in our lives when they leave us, and all of these things meant that I could write the novel I did.
This blog coincides with the book, to further discuss the topics raised in it and to talk about others. I live in the beautiful south of France and I find inspiration everyday in my surroundings. I'm truly honored that my blog has been chosen and so to BlogPaws and everyone who reads my blog, and my book, I say a great big THANK YOU!

The True Story of a Not So Crazy Cat Lady is available now in paperback and eBook.

My little boy Archie.
Teddy when he was a mischievous kitten.

BlogPaws 2015 Nose-to-Nose Awards Finalist badge

Sunday, 1 March 2015

I Need Your Vote!

Hello everyone, today I'm going to talk about something a little bit different...needle felting! 
When I'm not writing I love to work with my hands and one of my favourite crafts is needle felting. I sell my miniature needle felt animals in a couple of online stores, one of which is A Little Market. I was lucky enough, very recently, to be asked on the strength of my creations to take part in a competition sponsored by the magazine Marie Claire Idées. I was asked to decorate an embroidery hoop on the theme of winter and just below you can see my entry.

It is now up to a public vote to see who will make it through to the top 10. It's only one vote per person and you don't need a Facebook account to take page, so if you have a minute to spare I would really love it if you could support my entry. Follow this link (if you're using a tablet go to to go the competition and see the gallery of entries. I'm counting on you :)

Catherine Walker is the author of The True Story of a Not So Crazy Cat Lady available now in paperback and eBook!