Thursday, May 17, 2018

Thoroughly Poetic Thankful Thimble Thursday

Welcome to Thursday, friends! What a wonderful day of the week this is. It means we're so, so close to the weekend. It also means that it's time for the Thoroughly Poetic Thursday challenge, hosted by Angel Sammy and Teddy.

Each week, our hosts share an image for us to use as inspiration for our poem. This week's image is this cute and quaint one here:

I have always been so intrigued by the concept of a tiny house. The idea of minimalism and living more stress-free sure is appealing. The only problem is that I couldn't fit all of my kitties and pup in there, so that would pose a huge problem. That being said, it was not altogether the size of the house in that there photograph that inspired my poem this week.

For whatever reason, when looking at that image above, some of my dad's stories from his childhood came to my mind. My dad grew up as the oldest of five boys. All of them were, well, boys. My dad's childhood tales can get really, really interesting. Between him and his brothers, a lot of things went on in their childhood home. They were a rambunctious litter of kids, to which their mother will attest. My dad's two youngest brothers, those being twins, were especially well-known in their small town for their antics.

Where am I going with this? Well, my dad and his brothers grew up in a small house, in a small town, on Martin Street. For some reason, hearing the words "the house on Martin Street" whenever my dad or his brothers start telling childhood stories has always sparked my imagination. I can only imagine all the shenanigans that went down in that house on Martin Street. I've certainly heard the stories, and it must have been something else.

Anyway, enough rambling. I very, very loosely based my poem this week on the concept of that house on Martin Street. If you would like to know a little more about my version of the house on Martin Street, feel free to read on.

The House on Martin Street

It was minuscule and meek,
That strange house on Martin Street.
The house was dwarfed by surrounding trees,
And looked as if it might blow away in the breeze.

No one in town could make heads or tails of the house,
In part because it seemed that it might only fit a mouse.
The townsfolk knew an old woman lived inside,
And that with her a big grey dog also did reside.
Sometimes passersby also saw one, two, three cats, and more.
A great big goat even stood guard beside the door.

In truth, the townsfolk thought the woman a witch,
And passing by that house on Martin Street made folk twitch.
No one ever paid a visit to the old lady's tiny home,
Especially not with its creepy family of garden gnomes.

One day, though, that all changed,
After the postman thought he had the mail arranged.
But some folk a block over received the old lady's post,
And learned that apparently her name was Gertrude Toast.

 The false mail recipients were a family of seven,
And included a young girl aged eleven.
Her name was Katie and she had four brothers,
As well as a busy father and an even busier mother.
None of them wanted to take the old lady her mail.
After all, what if she was a witch and turned them into a snail!

Finally, Katie stepped up to the plate.
She figured she'd get it over with and not wait.
So the girl grabbed the old lady's parcel,
And hoped this venture would not prove harmful.

 Katie soon stood in front of that house on Martin Street,
Which currently left her unable to move her feet.
Weeds grew all throughout the tiny home's yard,
Blocking the garden that the little gnomes did guard.

 Taking one step and then another,
Katie decided she should have left this task for her brothers.
But it was no use pondering that anymore,
For Katie had already reached the door.

Katie had forgotten one thing about that house on Martin Street,
And that was the goat who then met her with a bleat.
The goat was loud and incredibly large,
And Katie began to worry it would charge.

But about that Katie did not have to worry,
For right then the front door opened in a hurry.
A tiny old lady stood in the doorway,
And at first nothing did she say.

The old woman, with hair grey and crazy,
Finally opened her mouth and greeted Katie.
She said, "Well, hello there."
Then she pointed to the goat whom at Katie did stare.
"Oh, I see you've met Pierre."

Pierre the giant goat again did bleat,
And then sat himself at the old woman's feet.
The old woman said, "Pierre wouldn't hurt a fly.
He is actually really quite shy."

Katie was not so convinced,
But that she was not about to admit.
Instead, Katie told the old lady,
"We received some of your mail today."
The girl offered the letter to its rightful owner,
And then suddenly smelled a pleasant odor.

The old woman thanked Katie and then said with delight,
"Please, do come inside!"
Katie thought that a frightening offer.
At least, until the old woman did proffer,
"I just baked chocolate chip cookies.
Please, come inside for some of the goodies."

Cookies, that's what Katie had earlier smelled.
Her stomach certainly now felt compelled.
The little old lady did seem quite nice,
Even if her tiny house could only fit mice.
Surely the old woman was not a murderous witch.
Surely paying her home a visit would go without hitch.

And so Katie agreed to go inside,
Which made the old woman smile and go wide-eyed.
Katie followed the old lady through the door,
And could not help but ask, "I'm sorry, but is that a squirrel?"
The bushy-tailed critter perched on the old woman's shoulder,
Which Katie noticed as she had drawn closer.

The squirrel was not the only surprise.
There was so much to see, Katie could not believe her eyes.
Surely this could not be the same house,
That from the street looked only fit for a mouse.
No, this house was breathtaking and grand,
With enough room for hundreds of people to stand.

As if she had read Katie's awestruck mind,
The old woman said, with a smile quite kind,
"Never judge a book by its cover.
Otherwise, you'll never know what's inside to discover."

But was it all just a trick of the eye?
Was the the old woman really a witch in disguise?
But Katie kept those thoughts discreet.
After all, there were still cookies to eat.

On the way to the kitchen they walked through a hall,
Where there were dozens of photos hung upon the wall.
"Those are of my husband Paul,"
Was how the old lady explained them all.
"Is he here?" Katie asked.
The reply was, "No, he has long since passed."

The next stop was the aromatic kitchen,
Where upon the counter sat three cats with tails twitching.
The old lady said, "Oh, good, the cats did their job.
They were told to keep the cookies away from the dog."
Indeed, on the floor pouted a big grey hound,
Who gazed up at the felines with a hefty frown.

The old woman handed Katie a plate with cookies of great mass,
And then poured her some milk in a very tall glass.
"Thank you," Katie said in earnest,
For sometimes her manners sure could flourish.

While Katie ate, the old woman talked.
The stories she had to share numbered a lot.
She had grown up on Martin Street, Katie learned.
Anytime she left, she always returned.

The old woman told countless tales of her childhood,
Of the people she'd met and the places she'd stood.
The old woman even mentioned the day she'd met Pierre,
And also the squirrel, whose name was Bear.

By the time Katie had emptied her plate,
The day was beginning to grow really quite late.
And so Katie and the old woman made their way to the door,
With the dog and the cats dancing at their feet on the floor.

"Will you come back again?" the old woman asked.
Katie replied, "That's an offer on which I cannot pass."
And Katie kept that promise day after day,
Visiting her old friend every time she passed by that way.
Pierre was of course always the first to greet her with a bleat,
And, of course, there were always cookies ready to eat.

Guess what? Every single animal in that poem and doodle actually existed at the real house on Martin Street. My dad grew up with many cats, including Gus, Winnie, and White Socks, all of whom I have heard many stories. There was also a Weimaraner pup named Rowdy, to whom my dad and grandpa were very close. And guess what? There was also indeed Pierre the goat! I have heard lots and lots of stories about Pierre. And where does the squirrel come in? That was inspired by the baby squirrel my twin uncles apparently found and brought home one day.


As with every Thursday, Thimble is now here to grace you with her presence, and also of course to participate in Brian's Thankful Thursday Blog Hop.

In addition to yet more window whiffies and sunshine, do you know what else Thimble is thankful for? She's thankful for more fun musical endeavors that we learned about from our friend Stunning CK. We have never before participated in the Curious as a Cathy Mewsic Moves Me blog hop (shame on us!), but we sure were intrigued by a recent one that we saw on CK's blog. For this one, all you have to do is use song titles to spell out your name.

Thimble of course wanted to partake in this fun. You know, Thimble really is into music. Thimble's Auntie (this here human's sister) currently lives with us, and she has a keyboard. Thimble is known to stomp all over said keyboard, using the power button to turn it on, and then playing tunes for us all to hear. Given their shared love for music, Thimble asked her Auntie to help out with this fun musical challenge. Here's what Thimble and Auntie came up with!

T:     "Tiny Dancer" by Elton John
H:     "Help!" by The Beatles
I:       "I Will Survive" by Gloria Gaynor
M:     "Mellow Yellow" by Donovan
B:      "Big Girls Don't Cry" by Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons
L:      "Let My Love Open the Door" by Pete Townshend
E:      "Eye of the Tiger" by Survivor

The other furbabies around here are also working on this, of course with Auntie's help. Feel free to have fun with this yourself!

We are wishing all of you friends of ours a happy Thursday! We are so thankful for all of you!


Last but not least, below are the phrases for tomorrow's Friendly Fill-Ins challenge. I am currently Ellen's co-host, while Annie of McGuffy's Reader takes a break from blogging. Many prayers to Annie! The first two fill-ins below are from the mind of Ellen over at 15andmeowing, and I came up with the last two.

1. Happiness is _________.

2. Ten years ago, I _________.

3. _________ is the best medicine.

4. Most people don't know that I _________.

Our Tip of the Day:

We spent the last two days addressing how to keep your furbaby cool and safe should they be spending time outdoors in the heat. Of course, staying cool indoors in the summer is far more ideal. That being said, though, extra care may still have to be used to keep some cats and dogs comfortable even when inside the home during the summer months. This is especially the case for those furbabies who have certain traits that might make it more difficult for them to stay cool even indoors. For example, on hot days, it is especially important to monitor the condition of cat or dogs with long or thick coats, those who are overweight, those with flat faces (such as Persian cats and Bulldogs), and those who are geriatric, sick, or for another reason may have difficulty regulating their body temperature.

So, how can you ensure that your furbaby remains cool and comfortable inside the home, even when it's sweltering outdoors? First, of course, you can run the air conditioning. Ensure that the unit's filter is regularly replaced. Also make sure that the vents throughout the house are open and unblocked, so that cool air can easily make its way throughout the home. In addition to the air conditioning, you can set up fans to help keep air moving and to keep your kitty or pup comfortable.

Some furbabies may even opt for lying on smooth, cool surfaces in order to stay cool. For example, hardwood or tile floors stay far more cool than carpet, and so you might find a kitty or pup sprawled out on the hard floor during the summer months. In this same line of thought, there are also cooling mats specifically designed for pets. These mats offer a cool surface on which to relax, and they can be placed on the floor, on furniture, or potentially even outdoors in order to keep that furbaby of yours cool.

Even if your furbaby is spending hot summer days inside, it is still important to monitor them and to ensure that they are staying cool. Then again, especially for those with short or no fur, it is also important to make sure that the air conditioning or fans are not too cool for them. As you all certainly know, keep an eye on those furbabies, and then make adjustments as needed to keep them happy and healthy.


Lone Star Cats said...

Sounds like a fun house - speshully da cookies!

Anonymous said...

Another wonderfully magic story inspired by the tiny blue house photo. We loved the reminder not to judge a book by its' cover which was certainly true when it came to the characters in the story! What fun. Thanks for being part of our Thursday FUN every week...........

Hugs, Teddy

Sheltie Times said...

Great poem. Ours sometimes like the tile along with the wood. Our angel Bailey would go sleep in the bathroom on hot days.

Brian's Home Blog said...

That was such a cool poem based on something real! You're looking mighty fine sweet Thimble and we enjoyed those tune picks! Thanks for joining the Thankful Thursday Blog Hop!

Marg said...

Fantastic poem. I really like that little blue house. And Thimble, you are looking mighty pretty this morning. Hope you all have a fine day.

Seville at Nerissa's Life said...

Oh my mouses! The little blue house is super cute. ADORABLE, in fact. But the painting of the house on Martin Street? I LOVE THAT ONE EVEN MORE!!! purrs

da tabbies o trout towne said...

thimble...ewe look gorgeouz az all wayz N we liked thiz weekz storee a hole bunch....we think it wood bee grate fun ta visit de houz on martin street an sure may bee we canna haz cookeez....but it will still be fun...pluz we wood likez ta meet a goat ;) ♥♥☺☺

pilch92 said...

I love your poem, you always write wonderful ones. I wish I had your ambition. Very cute drawing too. Great photos of Thimble and perfect song choices, she is Tiny Dancer. And as always, excellent tips. I look forward to your fill-ins tomorrow partner :)

Sandee said...

I'm all set of for Friendly Fill-ins. Thanks for co-hosting with Ellen. Been praying for Annie for some time.

Have a fabulous day and a very Thankful Thursday. ♥

Memories of Eric and Flynn said...

I always look forward to your wonderful poems, and you never disappoint!

The Island Cats said...

The House on Martin Street sure was a fun place to live!

Melissa, Mudpie and Angel Truffles (Mochas, Mysteries and Meows) said...

Thimble, I'm so glad you participated in the musical meme! Isn't it fun? And your poem is fabulous as always...what a cool place to live!

Savannah's Paw Tracks said...

oh I didn't know my BFGF had a mewsic hop goin' on. I gotta grab my fastest teleport tunnel and get to her place...*shoosh* BYE!!