Tuesday, 25 April 2017

domestic touches

It's hard sometimes visualising how things are going to turn out.  I ordered a set of new food dishes for the cats, because I was fed up with the way they kept pushing their food off an existing set of melamine plates and on to the hall floor.  I thought I might be able to get a set of plastic dishes sold for picnic and barbecue use, but when I looked in Tesco and The Range all the bowls were too deep, and I thought the cats would get cricks in their necks trying to eat out of them regularly.  I ended up on Amazon buying some stainless steel bowls with non-slip bases meant for cats and shallow faced dogs, not because I was interested in the non-slip base but because they were only 3.5 cm high.  And they sounded hygienic and easy to wash.  Another vendor was offering biodegradable dishes made out of bamboo that would decompose after three to five years in landfill, but I had visions of them starting to biodegrade after being left to soak in the kitchen sink. The cats are perfectly happy with their new dishes, but when they eat biscuits out of them there is a strange tinkling sound.  And Mr Cool dealt with the problem of not being allowed to push his food off his plate by seizing up a large spoonful of tinned food in his jaws and dropping it on the floor.

At much the same time I ordered two new doormats, because when I beat the old mats together to shake the dirt out, little pieces of doormat kept breaking off the edges as the PVC backing disintegrated, and I was bored of picking small tufts of plastic backed coir out of the gravel and tired of living with doormats that had the outline of Kansas, straight edges for the most part but with irregular pieces nibbled out of the corners.  I chose a pair of magnificent one hundred per cent coir mats from John Lewis, thinking that with no PVC back to give way they would withstand any amount of beating, and only realised when I unpacked them that they were so thick that one wouldn't fit under the door it was intended to sit by.  Luckily the actual front door allowed just enough clearance, and I swapped the other over with an existing mat, and all ended happily as the cats adored both of the new mats instantly, and practically queue up to take turns sleeping on them.  I don't suppose they'd have taken half as much notice if I'd got them a set of luxury cat beds from OKA.  As it was I had to move the one under the letterbox to one side so that the postman would not accidentally drop the post on Mr Fluffy.

So that is my piece of practical advice for today.  If you are buying a doormat and the door is supposed to open over it, measure the gap under the door and check the thickness of the mat.

For my next act I was intending to make some new bedroom curtains, but I had probably better spend a bit longer thinking that project through in detail than I did on choosing the doormats.

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