Archive for February, 2010

postheadericon Finnish Proverb – Sunday Selections

This lovely Finnish proverb is well suited to the beautiful strawberry plant offering up its fruit for this week’s Sunday Selections.

 
Love is a flower which turns into fruit at marriage.

postheadericon Spring Sights

It is starting to look like Spring around here.  The wild thing is that both the lavender and the Lion’s Ear (or Tail) both decided to start blooming at the beginning of February – I am just now getting around to showing the photos of the two of them..

I couldn’t believe how early they both got started, or the fact that they actually survived the move last fall.  I wasn’t very optimistic for many of my plants since the move was so rushed and haphazard.

We’re starting to get many more of these pretty little guys coming by the feeders.  My birdseed bill is starting to get pretty high as they keep bringing more of their friends.  The photo below isn’t a great shot, I just liked how I caught him mid-flight with his wings on the downstroke.

This Celtic design birdbath was a Happy Black Friday gift to myself.  I’d been wanting a new birdbath for quite a while and handn’t found one that I really, really liked.  We were wandering around Lowe’s at about 7am on Black Friday (ticked because we’d missed out on the TV at stinking Walmart..) and out in the garden section we ran upon this little beauty.  At $39.00 I should have bought two!

The birds love it.  It is a pain to clean as it’s very heavy and in two pieces, but it’s worth watching the little feathered fiends splash around and have a good old time.

The birds are getting friendlier all the time as they have discovered I am the mysterious being that refills the bird feeders – daily.  They used to all leave the yard when I’d walk out.  Now they sit about two feet from me, chirping to each other and at me to “Hurry up!”

And finally….THIS is what I see when I am outside looking in.  Little furry faces that really, really want to be after those birds.

postheadericon The Tao of Mia and Leo Book Review & Giveaway

The Tao of Mia and Leo

THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED

I received this for review back at the end of December.  With everything going on with Mom, I have just recently been able to sit down (with a couple cups of tea of course) and read it uninterrupted.  It is such a delightful read that I wanted to be able to enjoy it and immerse myself in the message of the book.

The The Tao of Mia and Leo follows the author and the escapades of her cats beginning with her beloved Samantha and then the mischievious title characters.  Jeffra Nicholson writes about living in and finally leaving the corporate world to pursue her dream of writing and shares how it impacted her and the cats.  She takes us with her through the life changes and what she learned about herself and her fuzzy housemates. 

This lovely true story is written by a dedicated cat lover who is able to convey a valuable life lesson to those of us with cats or those without.  I found it to be a very insightful look at both human and feline behavior; showing how interchangeable and instructional it can be at the same time.  Jeffra offers many comparisons regarding Leo and Mia’s personalities and the similarities with people. She puts a spotlight on instances where a person could benefit by taking a page (sorry about the pun) out of the cats’ book and mimicking how a cat responds to situations. 

One of my favorite examples is when she talks about buying all of the most expensive toys for her cats only to watch them play with a rolled up piece of tinfoil. She noted that people needed to be able to find joy in the simpler things .  I relayed this anecdote to my family members and compared it to buying a big fancy toy (like a jetski), using it 2 or 3 times, and then leaving it sitting in the garage.  Then finding out that something as simple as playing a card game of gin-rummy at the kitchen table brought us just as much joy if not more, than the $7500 water toy that is now gathering dust.  I keep telling them that we each need to find our ball of tinfoil.

Another selection I really related to (especially with some of my cats) is when Jeffra was moving to a new city and was terrified about the change in her life.  Leo’s behavior at the airport completely mirrored and conveyed what Jeffra was really feeling, but holding in.  Thank goodness Jeffra’s very intuitive mother pointed this out to her after the incident.  I can really understand this on a personal level since I’ve become aware that when I am especially upset or worried about something and trying to block it out, I will have one or more of the cats plastered to my side.  They are very attuned to our emotions even when we’re not.

This is a very easy read as it is not a really long book (around 100 pages).  It has a very positive message that is effectively presented.   I felt connected with the author when I was finished with this book as I also used to be overly wrapped up in my career and didn’t spend near enough time with loved ones.  Since leaving that hectic life, I am enjoying my family, friends, and furry ones so much more.  The Tao of Mia and Leo reinforces the positive message that simplifying your life can enrich it immensely and in unexpected ways.

You definitely do not have to be a cat lover to really enjoy this book.  It is very well written and would make a lovely gift for anyone on your list, especially someone in need of a boost in their outlook.  I have a couple of people in mind who I would like to get this wonderful book for.  I know I will be reading my copy again!

GIVEAWAY
The publisher has generously offered a copy of The Tao of Mia and Leo for one lucky MoonCat Farms Meanderings reader.  Sorry to my international friends, but this is only open to US RESIDENTS. 

There are several ways to enter the giveaway, you can do one or all. Just be sure to leave me a separate comment for each thing you do:

1.Leave a comment on this post & let me know if you have cats and how many.  (You don’t have to be a cat owner to enter, I’m just nosy.)

2.Become a MoonCat Farms follower.

3.Subscribe to MoonCat Farms Meanderings

4.Follow MoonCat Farms on Twitter and/or Facebook (links on the sidebar to the right>>>>)

5.Become a fan of The Tao of Mia and Leo on Facebook

6.Blog about this giveaway.

7.Tweet about this giveaway

To enter, just leave a comment below, on this post only.  The giveaway closes at midnight PST on Friday, March 5th, 2010.  One winner will be chosen at random and announced on Saturday, March 6th, 2010.  The winner will have 48 hours to respond or another name will be chosen. 

To purchase a copy of this lovely and very reasonably priced book, go to the Amazon.com link below:

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Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher for review purposes. The opinions expressed here are 100% my own. I was under no obligation to offer a positive review. The publisher is providing a copy of the book for the giveaway winner.