Indoor Cats Vs. Outdoor Cats

It’s a topic that I find divides the public down the middle – which is better: Indoor cats, or outdoor cats?

Our Transition From Indoor Cats to Outdoor Cats

When I was younger, our cats were strictly in the latter camp. There was a cat flap in the kitchen letting them wander in and out as they pleased. In a house of four under five year olds, I imagine the peace and quiet was appreciated. Moet and Chandon ultimately died of old age, but they both had scrapes with the outdoors at different points.

When we got our most recent feline additions however, they were always strictly indoor cats. Anyone whose met Hector can confirm that he doesn’t have the common sense to cope with a busy road. Roxy had always been an indoor cat when I got her, and her reaction to an oncoming car would probably be to just flop. It seemed unfair to just let Archie out, and PJ was so fed up of the outside when she came to us that she hardly even joins the supervised trips to the garden. As a family, we’re firmly in camp ‘Indoor.’ It just seems to make sense for our situation. But I know many people in the ‘Outdoor’ camp, and can understand where they’re coming from.

I just don’t know if it’s worth the risk.

Harry & Hugo

We have – had – two lovely ginger kittens at my workplace. It ultimately wasn’t my decision to as to whether or not they were kept inside, and a few weeks of litter trays settled the debate – they were going out. To begin with, there were no problems – although the boys continued to come inside to do their business in the litter tray, much to everyone else’s disdain. Then they started to bring in dad mice and birds, which disgusted people more than the litter trays but hey, that’s just what cats do. Then, one of them didn’t come home one night. Then, only a couple of weeks ago, the second dashed out in front of a car and sadly didn’t make it.

It’s sad whenever you lose a family pet, but this death hit me especially hard. I had warned, over and over again, that it just wasn’t safe for cats to go out when there’s a main road right there. In my brief time as a van driver, I was moving dead cats out of the road every week. Surely it wasn’t worth it?

There are many arguments for letting your cat out but for me, the benefits don’t outweigh the risks. The risks aren’t just to your cat – it impacts the wildlife too. The Mammal Society estimates that cats in the UK kill up to 275 million items of prey each year. With the number of domestic cats rising, it’s likely that this number will too.

I encourage everyone to investigate the pros and cons themselves. I’d love to hear your thoughts regardless of which side of the fence you are on! Do your cats live a pampered life inside, or do they live on the wild side?

30 Cards in 30 Days Challenge: Flip Card

I’ve really fallen in love with card making recently, but I’ve found myself with a couple of problems:

  1. All my cards are looking the same.
  2. I have so much in my stash, completely unused.

Searching the internet for some inspiration, I found this video from Gabrielle Pollacco, demonstrating a type of card I haven’t attempted yet.

Inspired by the video, I set about making my own, including these adorable stamps from Lawn Fawn – one off my ‘not used’ list.

Hedgehugs

But then I got thinking about the rest of my stash, and decided to set myself a little challenge – thirty cards, thirty days. My adventures into my craft stash will be posted daily over on my Instagram, or you can look out for the weekly round ups each Sunday.

If you fancy a peek at what’s to come, check out the list of prompts I’ve created for myself below!

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Ch-Ch-Changes

Way back in 2013, I was just starting my career in stage management. It had been my life since 2008, when I undertook my first Assistant Stage Manager role on a production of ‘His Dark Materials.’ I immediately fell in love with the craft, and for the next two years, most evenings after school were spent at my local theatre, working on productions as part of the Young People’s Theatre. (At one point, my English teacher pulled me aside and told me I needed to stop wasting time at the theatre if I wanted to get a decent A-Level grade – I got a B, and the highest exam result of my class.) When it came to applying for university, there was no question as to what I wanted to do, and I was accepted onto the stage management course at the (now-Royal) Central School of Speech and Drama.

Shortly after starting my career however, my mental health problems reared their ugly head again. By the time graduation rolled around in December, I had moved home and was unemployed. There was little chance of getting a stage management job locally, but even if there was, I couldn’t see myself doing it. I’d fallen out of love with it and, more importantly, I wasn’t mentally in a position to cope with it.

Looking for a new job, I re-examined my core values and came to one conclusion; I wanted to be helping people. After a brief time driving a van for a local supermarket, I found my dream job as a Support Worker for Adults with Learning Disabilities.

After a year though, I started to feel restless in the job I loved. I was starting to reach my peak, with no opportunities to grow becoming evident. I took on a part time role with a youth organisation, working in the development team to set up new provision in deprived areas. Like with my full time position, I fell in love immediately. But it was only so long before I became restless again.

I guess you could say I was bored. Whilst my part time job was providing the opportunities I craved, a majority of my week was the same thing, day in, day out. Part of the reason I loved theatre was that no two days were the same. And I wasn’t ready to give up my past. I wanted theatre back in my life, one way or another.

So here we are. September 2016 – time for a change.

Change One 

As of the 23rd September, I will once again be unemployed. I’m in the process of wrapping up loose ends at the moment.

Change Two 

I am moving back out of the family home, and returning to the frighteningly expensive capital city of London. Five bedroom house to a tiny bedsit.

Change Three 

And this should explain some things. I’m heading back to my alma mater as a postgraduate student, studying a Master’s in Applied Theatre. Applied theatre is “the use of drama in an educational, community or therapeutic context” (Wikipedia) – in other words, the perfect combination of my two passions.

It’s a lot of change in a short amount of time, and I’m constantly shifting between excited and “Oh my god, what have I done?”. But I’m mostly looking forward to the challenge and the change of scenery. And I’ll be sure to share my insights along the way!