Meet Alf Capone – one of my Craft Room companions.

Mr. A in the grass

About three years ago Mr. Cobs and I were talked into having a kitten by our (grown up and married)  daughter.  She knew someone who was desperately trying to find homes for kittens and we agreed that we’d have one.

We chose the most adorable little black and white bit of fun and mischief, got her home, and within about three hours we knew we’d made a mistake.  We shouldn’t have just had one kitten.  We should have had two.  She needed a little playmate.  We were fine, but we weren’t kittens.  She’d come from a big ‘brood’ of kittens and we felt so mean taking her away from them all.  It was decided.  We contacted the lady and asked if we could have another kitten.

So back we went the next day to pick up the tiniest little black boy kitten;  huge big blue eyes which melted my heart and the tiniest little white diamond on his chest.  Ohhh, he was SO adorable that there should be a law against being that cute.

Mr. A as a baby

We got him into the house and his little girl sister instantly jumped on him and battered him with play.  Mr Cobs and I both agreed that we reckoned the young lady was going to be the boss out of the two of them.

We weren’t ‘new’ pet owners.  We already had two dogs, and one very elderly cat (whose now 20 years old).  So looking after little rascals wasn’t in the least bit of a surprise.  We knew what we were letting ourselves in for.

But …. we didn’t quite reckon on Alf.  OrAlf Capone;  to give him the full, respectful name he requires.

(I call him ‘Alfie Pops’  – but don’t let him know I told you because I fear that he will tell me I’m dead to him if anyone else knows about this affectionate monica I’ve bestowed upon his head).  :o)

Photograph taken by my lovely neighbour, who's way better at capturing a photograph of this almost all black chap than I am.

Photograph taken by my lovely neighbour, who’s way better at capturing a photograph of this almost all black chap than I am.

 Now I’d like to think that Alf Capone Esquire is more James Bond  (cue Live and Let Die music in the background) – because he is so sleek.  So dashing.  So, SO handsome, and he truly looks like he’s wearing a tuxedo.  The white diamond on his chest simply looks like a pure white shirt, beneath his black tuxedo jacket.  However, I’ve never seen a Bond film where James attempts to assassinate his sister whenever he’s ready for dinner and none is being served at the exact time he requires it.  (more about this distinguishing character  ‘trait’ in a moment)

I’m not saying that any mafioso would assassinate his sister – however … we are dealing with the Cat Mafia here and so I think the rules are very different.

I absolutely love this fascinating creature to the moon and back (plus tax) and he tickles the heck out of me with some of the things he does, and has done, in the time since we’ve had him.

I’m rather ashamed to tell you this but  well,  …  Mr. Alf is a kleptomaniac.  He’s stolen things  from other people’s houses;  cat toys, food – corn on the cob, a fried egg,  and even bread rolls which, by the look of the contents, came from someone’s barbecue.  He’s delivered looong lengths of silicon sealant at my feet which he’s obviously freshly pulled out from goodness knows where;  a sock;  a tiny rubber bouncy ball,  and … oh,  an assortment of other weird and odd stolen things.    Along with the usual cat ‘gifts’ of birds (both alive and those he’s personally ‘delivered’ to the Rainbow Bridge) and mice (those are more often than not alive and running at speed when he drops them, with me chasing after them, squealing: “eek, eeeeeek,  EEEEEK!” as I try to catch the darn things but stop him from catching them again – sigh).

But his most favourite thing to do is to accompany me to the craft room, where he sleeps either under one of my desks, on a big, soft red with white spots comfy cushion, which my (now passed on) eldest dog used to sleep on, or he will curl up on one of the chairs pushed under the table at the back of the craft room, and sleep there for as long as I’m crafting.

If I haven’t gone to my crafty hidey hole when he feels I should have, he will come into the living room where I’m sat and, standing on his two back paws, he’ll put his front paws on my knees and tap me gently, over and over, until I look at him, and I can clearly see the ‘nag nag nag’ in his eyes, asking me to “C’mon….  get a move on, I’m waiting!”  LOL.

However …. in the house, when he gets tired, …. aw, that’s when he becomes a baby again.  He loves the blankets we have for our dog (she likes to clamber under the blankets and put herself to bed).  Mr. Alf loves these blankets too,  so much so, that they’ve become his version of a childs ‘blanky’.  He HAS to have a few minutes with the blanky before he’ll go to bed.

You see …. he likes to suck on the fluffy side of them.  Yes – you read that correctly.

We’ve tried to stop him – to no avail.  We’re aware how bad it is and I won’t bother to tell you how worried I am that he might be taking bits of fluff into his system.  (I have checked these blankets and haven’t found any bare patches, or parts where it looks like bits are missing).

Alf Capone 3

The photo above shows you how he drapes himself over the edge of the dogs wicker bed, and once he’s got the blanket in just the right place, he begins to pad, pad, pad it, – just like he would have done to his mummy’s tummy when he was a kitten and wanted to feed – and then he’ll begin to suck it.  Audibly.  Noisy little slurpy, sucking noises.  I kid ye not dear reader.  This is really embarrassing when we have visitors and he does it, because it’s quite loud. 

Alf Capone 4

Once he’s had his blanky time, he then gets himself into position to sleep …. by making sure that he drapes himself half on the bed, and half off.  (see the above photograph).   Doesn’t matter which of the numerous beds we have dotted about our little cottage, – he has a choice of:-  two wicker beds with comfy cushions; a large, rigid plastic bed with a big squishy cushion inside; a firmly padded tartan with matching cushion cat bed, or two lovely, roses printed Cath Kidston pet beds – he makes sure that he drapes himself in such a way that at the very least one whole leg is draped outside the bed.  We have no idea why he has to sleep this way, but I’m figuring that it must be a Cat Mafia thing.  One foot always ready to pounce while the other three are sleeping. 

However  … when hungry, that’s when this adorable little monster becomes the naughty little devil and gets a telling off.  If we take just a nano second too long in dishing up his hearts desire, he will turn his annoyance at being made to wait, into a reason for his killer instinct to show up and he will attempt to kill his sister, so as to get us into action pronto.

He chases her around our cottage: – up the hallway at breakneck speed and back down again; over the high-backed chair in the living room (with claws out, which makes it sound like he’s ripping the fabric), over the sofa, both the back and the seat parts, into and around the conservatory, up the 5 feet tall cat scratching post/bed/climbing frame combination, and,  eventually , if the door’s left open,  he’ll harem scarem through the bedroom, at a gazillion miles an hour – which he KNOWS he’s not allowed to do – over the bed, onto the windowsill – disturbing the curtains and making the lovely little yacht I have on the sill there rock back and forth.  If by chance he manages to actually catch his sister, he’ll make her squeal by grabbing her by the scruff of her neck – which gets him a real old telling off, – which in turn makes him sulk on the sofa until he finally gets what he wants …. dinner, in his favourite dish.  (Please God don’t anyone give him the wrong dish!)

He can be a troublesome bug to our dog too.  He major time loves our dog (‘Maybees’ – say it sort of singy songy and you’ll see how it sounds.  lol) sooooo much, that he wants to love her and love her and love her.  He rubs his chubby little cheeks around her face, scent marking her and making her ‘his’.  He cleans her ears for her with his raspy tongue, which tickles her and makes her shake her head so violently that I think it’s going to fly off one day.  He clambers onto her bed and snuggles up to her – which drives her nuts and she pleads with me to get him off.  Ohhh he loves Maybees soooo much that it’s pitiful to watch.  Maybees does love him too.  But she just wishes that he’d leave her alone to snore when she’s asleep and not climb all over her, trying to wake her up.

But he’s adorable.  For all his funny things, annoying things, rascal ways … we all love him to pieces.  My Daughter and Son-in-Law have both said that they’d have him in a heartbeat.  He’s just brilliant.

And … when he finally finds a spot and settles down ….  he’s just the little boy he always was when we first brought him home.

Alf Capone 2

He’s just my Alfie Pops.  Soft, with fur like you’ve never felt before.  Thick, deep and luxurious.  Sweet natured (really – most of the time).  A little baby who loves ice cream,  drinking chocolate (I dip my finger into it and he licks it off my finger) and scrambled egg.  His favourite treats are cheesy puffed cat crunchies,  which I keep in a little glass jar and shake them when it’s time to come home and stop playing outside in the woods.  He’s a beautiful, massively heavy, big (much much bigger than he looks in these photographs) gorgeous, sweet thing and I love him to pieces.  And no, dearest daughter, if you’re reading, I’m not going to give him to you … but I’ll share him with you when you visit.

Before signing off ….  I know this isn’t one of my usual crafty posts and I know I’ve been Missing In Action for a couple of weeks (or so), and my blogs been very quiet.  I had to have some surgery.  I found some lumps about four weeks or so ago and the surgeon said that rather than simply take a little biopsy and wait to see what turned up, he felt it would be more prudent to remove all the lumps and, hopefully, all the surrounding cells, and then get a biopsy done on all that tissue.  He doesn’t think there’s anything to be worried about but I won’t get any results quite yet.   I’m not worrying until there’s something to worry about, because that’s just a waste of days and the older I get, the faster the days seem to go, so I’m not about to waste even one day worrying when I’ve got so much crafting to do!

Normal service will be resumed ASAP, as I get back to my crafty stuff.  However …  I will continue to introduce you to the fur babies I have here, who accompany me to my craft room, so that you paint a picture of who’s under the desk with me as I craft.  :o)

Thank you so much for coming to have a read.  I love that you visit to share a few minutes with me.  Thank you. 

Have a wonderful, happy, blessed day!

Cobs siggy sml

… and Alf Capone, of course!

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I’ll Rope You A Star ~ a handmade, little stars, Wand.

Rope a Star  Wand

Did you know … that a Wand isn’t in the least bit magical?  It can’t do a thing.  It has absolutely NO power. NOTHING Let me explain more . . .

All a wand actually is,  is a ‘tool’ on which to focus your attention.  Believe me, if wands themselves really could do ‘stuff’ all on their own, I certainly wouldn’t collect the pretty wands which I do! (or any other sort of wand for that matter!).

Let me take you back to your school days   Imagine for a moment that you’re sat in the classroom, and you’re giggling and whispering with the girl next to you.  Suddenly the teacher’s voice BOOMS out, and shouts your name!  You look up and see him standing there, with a cross face,  hands on hips.  He looks right at you,  gives you a stern telling off and tells you that you’re disrupting his class.

Embarrassing eh?

Now let’s replay that scene again . . . 

The teacher’s voice  BOOMS  out, and shouts your name!  You look up and see your teacher standing there pointing his index right at you.  He’s looking very cross.  Looking directly at you but still pointing his finger at you, shaking it the merest amount, he raises his voice and tells you off, – all the time he’s doing this he continues to point that finger at you.

Can you see (and feel)  how much more ‘menacing’ the whole scene becomes simply because he’s pointing his finger at you?

That finger doesn’t have anything magical about it, and yet it seems to hold so much more ‘power’.

That’s exactly the same as a wand.  All a finger pointing at you is doing is focusing your attention.  (and the person who’s pointing at you’s attention).  A wand is exactly the same thing.   It just focus’ the attention.

Well now I’ve blathered on about how wands don’t have any power, you can perhaps now understand why they don’t ‘freak’ me out, and even why I love to make pretty, magical to the eye, wands!   And this  ‘Rope a Star’ wand is magical to the eye.

Rope a Star  Wand

The inspiration for this wand came from my childhood.  My mother used to tell me a poem, song, or story (I sadly can’t remember which) when I was little, but I do remember that I loved it.  Sadly I cannot remember what the story, song, poem was – and my mother has passed on, so I can’t ask her about it – but I remember a line from it which went something like:  ‘I’ll throw a rope out and rope a star just for you’ …  and that line conjured up such wonderful images inside my little mind,  and it still does now.

So I decided that I would throw a rope out and rope a star –  but this time I’d make mine a rope which wrapped itself around a wand, and the stars would hang from the wand itself.

There are little silver stars which dangle from lot’s of places on the wand, and there’s a crescent moon with stars hanging from the heel of the wand (at the top end as you’re looking at it in the photo.  The ribbon and star cuff around the top of the wand is removable.

Over the years I’ve tried to find the poem, song or story which mentions this ‘roping in a star’ and I’ve never found it.  But if you happen to know it or know where to find it, I’d be thrilled if you could either let me know or pop a link into a comment so that I could go and find it.

Star Light Star Bright1

Have a truly blessed rest of your day, all,  . . .  and a fabulously twinkly, star lit night. 

Cobs siggy sml