Tuesday tidbits and a long overdue apology.

Heartfelt gratitude

Flowery Prose has sort of been languishing on the backburner for the better part of a year now as I’ve been tackling a zillion other projects…and while this has been going on, I’ve completely broken all the rules of good blogging.  Blogs that are worth their salt are built on the interactions between writer and reader. Although you’ve all been utterly fabulous and continued to read and comment whenever I’ve managed to squeak out a post (which has been less and less often as the months have gone by), I have, sadly, completely failed with regard to responding to all the fantastic comments I’ve received, as well as reciprocating by reading your blogs.  I not only need to issue a huge apology, but I need to take action.  So…effective immediately, you’re going to see a re-energized Flowery Prose.  I am also going to make a far greater effort to spend time finding out about what is going on in your part of the world, via your blog posts.  Please don’t expect huge strides, as I’m still swamped with projects.  But I am going to make a change.  Baby steps.  Thank you so much to all of you for sticking around this entire time, even when there was a whole lot of silence on my end – I am deeply grateful for your kindness!

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It looks as if I will have to fire my research assistant…this is the fourth time today I have caught her sleeping on the job….  😉

Writing updates

The Central Library here in Calgary and the local writer’s group Loft 112 have a cool little thing going on…they’ve set up a Short Story Dispenser, conveniently located near Luke’s Café on Level 1M.  While you’re sipping your tea or coffee, you can indulge in a randomly-selected one-minute, three-minute, or five-minute short story that is released from the dispenser at the touch of a button.  The stories have been written by both international and Calgary-based writers – and I’m absolutely delighted to say that two of my five-minute stories are currently stuffed somewhere in the dispenser, waiting for someone to read them. If you live in Calgary and area, Loft 112 is still looking for more stories to fill the machine, so take a look at the call for submissions and have fun with it!

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Local interest

I recently found a little gem of a book by a southern Alberta-based writer, Joyce Moore: A Guide to Alberta Outdoors – Rides, Hikes, Birds, and Beasts (Bayeux Arts, Inc., Calgary, 2009). It’s a brief but lively collection of nature/outdoors columns that were syndicated for several rural newspapers in the 1990’s.  She writes about ranching in the Highwood River area, the undertaking of several challenging and stunningly beautiful mountain treks, and observations of birds and other wildlife found in the Rockies and the foothills.  A one-lunch-break read, and a fascinating look at our beautiful province by a woman who clearly loves and respects the environment.

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A new member of the family.

Family and friends and those I’m connected with on Facebook already know about her, but I haven’t yet mentioned her to all of you!  I am absolutely delighted to introduce Smudge!

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My hubby and I want to give a huge shout-out to Tails to Tell, the rescue we adopted her from – they do amazing work in southern Alberta and we are so happy to have the opportunity to provide a home for one of their long-term residents.  Smudge had lived at the shelter for nearly her entire life – she had been brought there as an approximately two-month-old kitten (someone found her dumped at the waste transfer site near Crossfield, Alberta).  She is just over two years old now.

After an initial period of shyness and much hiding, she now follows us everywhere and practices this style of devastatingly adorable art daily (sometimes several times per day):

How am I supposed to withstand that kind of onslaught?  “Yes, your Ladyship, I’ll get on that yesterday!”

Those of you who have ever spent time with a cat will completely understand.  We are utterly smitten with Smudge.

 

Calgary snapshot: Regal Cat Cafe.

A couple of weeks ago, my hubby and I honoured a very special reservation for coffee and baked treats at a café in the neighbourhood of Kensington here in Calgary.

We had a few guests join us afterwards.

Of the furry variety.

You see, we spent the morning at the Regal Cat Café, where you can sit and enjoy a delicious tea or coffee and a scrumptious variety of baking, and then, if you choose (and who wouldn’t?), you can pay a small fee to spend the better part of an hour entertaining and being entertained by a roomful of cats.  The Café works in conjunction with The MEOW Foundation, a Calgary cat rescue charity, and the cats you get to play with are all up for adoption.  The money you pay to spend time with the cats goes to help fund the Foundation’s work.

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It was probably the most delightful morning I have spent in years.  We don’t have a cat, but I am utterly infatuated with them, so to have free time just to play with these rescues and watch them do goofy, fun cat things, was such a treat.  And the Café’s ultra-spacious, kitty-approved (and quite frankly, supremely swanky) accommodations, completely separate from the food, are set up with all manner of hiding spots, climbing areas, platforms, scratching posts, blankets, chairs, and sunny nooks just for snoozing.  It’s absolutely perfect.  (There is even an inner room with a sink for washing up and lockers to securely leave your belongings in).

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For anyone in Calgary who wants to visit the Café, there are a few drop-in cat visits permitted, but they do prefer advance registrations.  The number of people allowed in the room at one time is restricted.  And you have to observe a few rules for the safety and comfort of the cats (and you), but everything is clearly explained when you get there.

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I’m looking forward to filling up my new Loyalty card at this wonderful place.  🙂