A very Muddy Adventure 🙈

Today was officially an adventure day but I still feel rotten so didn’t want to travel too far for todays adventure.


Instead we opted for something closer to home! So we went the fisherman’s car park in Kingsmead by the Weaver.

We did the loop from there to Vale Royal Abbey which was in total 7.5 miles – which I am pleased with when I spent most of the walk coughing like a goodun.


The route was exceptionally muddy!! We did it maybe a month or so ago and it was muddy but not too bad – this time is was a pure mud bath!


Which made for an interesting slightly slower (no complaints from me and my wheezy chest) walk than usual but still lots of fun.

We also stopped for a few games of fetch in the woods so Toby could have a good old run around as he sticks fairly close when walking off lead.


One section of the walk has been filled with sheep which was a pain as there has been a temporary electric fence erected around them – which you have to climb over to follow the public footpath – they have put a piece of hose over the section of the electric fence you are supposed to climb over but it didn’t fill me with confidence!


It also wasn’t a field as such – more a minefield of mud, sheep and radishes (don’t quote me on that they were weird and purpley/reddy)

By the time we’d managed that section Toby and I were both filthy! 😂


After our very very muddy walk we had a little date afternoon with the better half so we all went over to Chester for some lunch in the lovely and very dog friendly Marmalade cafe.


Toby had a little brush down and collar change before we went out as his red Christmas collar now has speckles of mud brown …. so needs a clean 😂

Toby thoroughly enjoys a good people watching / being generally nosey session whilst in the city 😂


The food is gorgeous and they are so friendly and welcoming for dogs!


We also found on this trip that they do real ice cream milkshakes which were just magic 😍


In other news we’ve got a list of things to do to get ready for our first challenge for #10mountains10months next week …. we’ve had to add washing Toby’s back pack to the top of that list 😂🙈


Hope you’ve all had a lovely Saturday!! 💚


Christmas and Beyond!

We hope you’ve all had a great Christmas doing whatever it is that makes you happy!!

We’ve had a lovely few days over Christmas! 🎁

Christmas Day was just me, the better half and Toby 😍 we had a lazy morning opening presents and then headed out for a Christmas walk!


Toby as usual had the biggest hoard – I’d been collecting presents for him for a while and had been stashing treats away for him for Christmas!


We headed to Teggs Nose for our Christmas walk – the weather wasn’t the best but we had fun nonetheless.


We walked around the top of the park for a change and went to the library in the landscape (forgot to write in the book though! 😂)


After our walk we headed home for Christmas dinner veggie Christmas dinner for me, but turkey and all the trimmings for Billy and Toby 🍗🥓🎅🏼


After eating far too much food we slobbed on the sofa watching Christmas films in true Christmas style!

Boxing Day we headed to Yorkshire as Billy’s niece was turning 1 🎉🎁

The drive was truly traumatic – Woodhead Pass was closed due to impassable snow and the alternative route directed us over Saddleworth Moor which was also horrendously snowy – Billy was a pro and I was a super wussy passenger 😂


Toby and his pal Hugo coped really well with the super busy house (after having a little stroll at the park to blow all the cobwebs away!!)


Then begins the Crimbo Limbo!

Today was my last day of freedom before a very short (thank goodness) 2 day week at work.

So we headed to Pennington Flash!


It was a nice enough walk – I won’t necessarily be rushing to go back but that was primarily as there were too many people for my liking.


There unfortunately were a lot of impolite dog owners who had no control of their dogs – which is a giant bug Bear of mine!

Toby is either on a lead or under close control (either a sit or wait beside me as something goes past) if I’m not sure how he’ll react I put him on lead. If there is another dog on lead I am polite and put Toby on a lead …. it isn’t too much to ask in my opinion!


It was gorgeous weather today and I would have liked to have been out for longer and do more than the 6 miles we did but sadly Billy has infected me with a chesty cough and I currently am breathing like Darth Vader and because my silly asthma means as soon as I get a chesty cough I may as well be a 127 year old man I didn’t think it was the best idea to stay out for too long!


However we had fun and that’s all that matters!! 😊

After a few hours to nap (for Toby) and for me to use one of my MANY Christmas bath bombs we had our first therapy visit after Christmas!


Toby was very excited to be back (slightly upset he didn’t see his favourite resident who always gives him a biscuit) but happy as Larry otherwise!


He met a few residents he hasn’t seen before and had a thorough sniff of all three floors to ensure that nothing Christmassy had been left behind ….


Now he’s completely zonked out having another well deserved snooze 😂

We hope you’ve all had a nice Christmas and have something fun planned for
Crimbo limbo!


Getting ready for Christmas 🎄🎅🏼

Today we had a beach day to kick off the start of our Christmas.


We headed to Formby beach – which is one of our favourites!

It was fairly quiet for a Saturday morning but I suppose most people were finishing off Christmas shopping, travelling to see family or getting themselves ready for Christmas 🎅🏼


Formby is free parking at this time of year if you use the Lifeboat road car park (always a bonus!)


Toby loves the beach, he always has done – he just goes bonkers! 😍


So he had a good old run and stomp around had a paddle and played ball and frisbee 👍🏼


There was a very cheeky crow who kept following us also so Toby had to chase him away a few times 😂


After a few hours at the beach we headed back to the car (did some festive skating) and then headed home to get ready for Momma and Poppa M coming round for Christmas Eve Eve tea 🎄


I successfully cooked a turkey second year on the trot which I am rather proud of as a none meat eater who never actually cooks meat.


We had a fun packed night with my parentals – Eating, drinking and generally being merry 💚

Tomorrow I’m off to the dogs home – after two weeks not being there I can’t wait to see the dogs and give them all a big Christmas squeeze!

Hope you are all successfully getting ready for Christmas no matter how you are spending it!


Merry Christmas from us 🎅🏼❤️

A little lunch time update! 🍩

We had our last therapy visit before Christmas last night. We are not visiting again until a few days after Christmas now so we can spend some time with the family over Christmas and Boxing Day.


Toby of course donned an appropriate outfit … elf Toby, and had a little pose on the piano (musical elf 😂)


It has to be really cold for him to wear a jumper there as the home is so so nice and warm!


It was much more peaceful last night, our previous visit was for the Christmas fair so it was a very busy visit!


He usual favourite residents were around and very happy to see him! He got his compulsory digestive biscuit from one of the residents – she always asks if he’s been good and if he is allowed his treat 😂

After his visit we headed home and Toby had a little Manicure – I have to schedule his nail clips for after visits as for a couple of days after a nail trim his nails are sharp and I worry about him scratching or marking the residents!
So Monday is the usual Manicure day 💅🏻

We’ve also been using some paw balm for his little toots to make sure his feet stay in top top condition for all his adventures.


Currently we’ve been using Wild Dog Co. Paw Balm which is great!
It’s lick safe and smells amazing, it helps sore or cracked paws and nourishes his pads.

Toby as you can see loves a relaxing little foot rub! 😂


In other news we in the Martin/Howe household are very excited for Christmas and have got a busy old week preparing for the upcoming festivities!!


We hope you’re all looking forward to the festive period too! ❤️🎅🏼

Busy Bee Weekend 🐝

This weekend we’ve had another busy one!


Saturday we headed to Yorkshire to visit the other half’s family, it was a strange trip as it went from normal weather to winter wonderland and right back to normal!


Toby had himself a little play date with his pal Hugo – I took the boys out to Rabbit Ings country park – which was lovely – free parking too!!

Lots of little paths and trails and very easy walking without getting lost, plus a nice little climb to the top to the viewpoint.


The boys had a good old run around and posed for some pictures along the way! And boy did they pose ….. 🙈🙈


Toby also got a chance to see one of his little human friends who delights in the fact his collar jingles! (Easy entertainment for children 😂) sadly she wasn’t feeling very well so Toby didn’t get much of a chance to play!

Sunday – we had another busy one, of got the day booked off the dogs home so went for an early morning planning meeting with Sophie to do some final things in preparation for our 2018 challenge.


Toby watched the world go by and witnessed some very loud dogs having doggy cupcakes in Bents 🤣


We then had to go home and wait for our parcel delivery slot!
Which brought a very exciting gift for Toby! A brand new backpack! In a very fetching (my favourite colour) GREEN 💚


After his harness arrived we decided we’d take it for a spin to Dunham, there was a Winter Wonderland event going on but thankfully we arrived before it was due to start so had a fairly peaceful walk around the grounds before hoards of people arrived.


I’ve never been to Dunham in the dusk at winter but it is BEAUTIFUL 😍 all the lights are just gorgeous!


There is also a light up musical fountain …. but Toby wasn’t a fan of that and was confused by the noise 😂 so we moved away from it fairly quickly!


After a little mooch around we decided to head home before it got too dark and too busy due to the event.

Weekends just go too quickly for my liking!!

Thanks for reading! 💚

Even more snow days! ❄️

We’ve had another few snowy adventure days! I’ve been off work on annual leave so have had a few more days to adventure than usual!


We headed to Lyme Park on Monday which was still covered in snow thankfully!


The plan originally was to head to the beach (birthday tradition) but I’ve seen a few reports about palm oil being present on the beach we usually frequent and didn’t want to risk it for Toby!


So a snow day seemed more appropriate and we had just as much fun!!


As we are National trust members parking is free for us at Lyme – however for non-members it is £8 per car for the day.

We had a few hours of playing in the snow before Toby got too cold and was sick of getting icicles in his feet (we had to de-ice his feet every 20 minutes or so!) he also had a minor toe related injury 😣 thankfully all seems fine with his tootsies today!!


To be on the safe side Toby donned his little Ruffwear booties whilst he supervised me de-icing the car, going round the block and getting our stuff ready to go and visit our pals at PAPYRUS to take our Christmas donation!


We had a lovely visit at Papyrus –
Toby spread Christmas cheer in his little elf number! 😂


Then to make he most of my last day of leave we went for a drink and cake at Bents Pet Place and then headed out for another frosty walk with slight dustings of snow!


A final little treat for you all! We have received our digital album from the photo shoot we attended on Friday! Here’s my little snowy skater boy! 😍


The pictures are stunning and we will drop the odd one in here and there, I can’t wait to receive the framed one next year and I can definitely recommend Jonathan Yearsley!

Thanks for reading! 💜



Christmas Markets & Snowy Days! ❄️🎅🏼

We’ve had an exciting couple of days, yesterday we went to have a photo shoot done which Toby won at the National Pet Show, which ended up being a photo shoot in the snow!

We then headed off to the pub for lunch before heading back to the studio to pick our favourite photos from the shoot!


The pictures are incredible (we haven’t got any of them yet but can’t wait until we do!)

As we don’t get much snow where we live we did detour on the way home to Loggerheads so that Toby could have a play in the snow.


He’d warmed up after our pub lunch and time in the studio so was more than happy to go for another snow play!


He had such fun as he LOVES the snow!


Loggerheads was fairly quiet as it was about 3 ish on a Friday afternoon! It made for a very peaceful and picturesque walk for me and the little dude though.


Today we were heading to the Christmas Markets with my Auntie and her little woof Marla.

Toby donned a Christmas outfit (ride on santa) for the occasion which earned him lots of funny looks!
But he was bringing festive cheer and that’s all that matters!


The weather unfortunately was diabolical – sleet and rain so we decided to head for some lunch before braving any more harsh weather!

I’d researched some dog friendly pubs/cafes before heading out so we had a few options!

Unfortunately the first option – The Pied Bull describes itself as dog friendly but only allows dogs to sit on the first table by the door, and if that table is taken you have to leave. So not really very dog friendly at all……

We found somewhere MUCH nicer though – a little cafe called Marmalade!


Which was very dog friendly, they found us a table upstairs and made big fusses of the dogs. The food was gorgeous also so I’d most certainly go there again!

The weather was still shocking so we decided to head to the Grosvenor Garden Centre instead – Christmas fill but inside 😂


We checked the website and they are also dog friendly – dogs are only not allowed in the restaurant area and the children’s play area (neither of which we wanted to visit!)


Confusingly there is a sign on the door to say only assistance dogs welcome but we checked with staff and were told it is dog friendly thank goodness!!


There were lots of super cute Christmas displays and photo opportunities!

Toby had lots of fusses and admirers partly because of his santa guest and partly because he’s gorgeous 😂


I would definitely recommend a trip to the Grosvenor Garden Centre with well behaved pups, it was lovely,  there is such a need for more dog friendly places to visit!!

Thanks for reading 😍


The Big Reveal – 2018 Challenge! 🗻⛰

So, Toby, Sophie and I are giving ourselves a personal challenge for 2018.


We have decided that as we have been affected by Suicide and have both carried out Fundraising events in aid of two Suicide prevention Charities that we would band together next year to do something bigger and better than we did previously.

54281327-6963-4214-B8E0-A8CDC842E8A9.jpegSophie on the Charity walk in Memory of Rob up Scafell Pike earlier this year.

Toby as usual is going to be our chief mascot and accompany us throughout the challenge / adventure ahead.

1DB390B7-36A8-4BEA-AE4C-BDB491DAD9FF.jpegMe, Toby and my parents after completing the Yorkshire Three Peaks in memory of Phil in the summer.

Our aim is not specifically to raise money this time but more to focus on raising awareness about young suicide, we are taking on this personal challenge in memory of Philip Martin and Robert Wharton.

C415D177-1996-4287-BE29-24C1E973B0C3.jpegSophie & Rob

F0AFE420-C687-4E16-8E11-7CC6D3C7E48A.jpegAnd my favourite picture of Phil & I.

Of course if you would like to make a donation to either charity in memory of either Rob or Phil please feel free to do so.
The Challenge for 2018 is called #10Mountains10Months & we are going to be taking on one mountain (loose term – climb is most accurate) a month for 10 months of the year in order to raise awareness for two separate charities.

6122D751-E6B9-4CEA-A018-1DDA54019FFC.jpegSophie proudly wearing her CALM top

The Charities that we are raising awareness for are CALM – Campaign against living miserably (dedicated to preventing male suicide) and PAPYRUS – Prevention of Young Suicide.

C20E30FA-57DD-4699-A4E2-AC3705D884DF.jpegToby and I wearing purple for PAPYRUS

F4DAAA58-019B-4468-A0D1-23B111C4AA8A.jpegToby with his beautiful PAPYRUS gear

We will hopefully be leaving a little something at the top of each climb in memory of Rob and Phil which will hopefully aid us in our challenge to raise as much awareness as possible.

Our Challenge will end with the biggest climb of the challenge which will be in October 2018.


Our aim is to use our challenge to raise as much awareness as possible, we have been friends for almost 24 years (I even checked this with my mum – we met at mum & tots when we were 2 and we both turn 26 a few weeks either side of the beginning of the challenge!) both of us have now been affected by Suicide, we want to try and do as much as we can to raise awareness, to make people more comfortable to talk about how they are feeling and to seek help if they need it.


We will make sure that we post updates after each climb so you can see where we have been – the list of mountains will remain a closely guarded secret!

Thank you for your support! ❤️


Getting into the Festive Spirit 🎅🏼

Today was Cheshire Dogs Home Christmas Fair, Toby and I are well and truly in the Christmas spirit already, we have been for a week or so!


Our tree is already up and we have decorated most of the downstairs into a suitably Christmassy fashion!

Whilst at the Christmas Fair Toby took his job of looking after the grotto until Santa arrived very very seriously! He of course wouldn’t want anyone from the naughty list to pinch themselves a gift!


He makes for an awfully cute Santa Paws!


We couldn’t decide on the most appropriate Christmas attire for Toby today so he had a number of outfit changes through the day 😂

It’s so hard to pick a favourite but I think at the moment his Home Alone top may be the best!


We posted on Facebook a while back that Toby was triple checker on the naughty/nice list this year for Santa, so after Santa had seen all the woofs and tiny humans today Toby nipped in to discuss the final draft of the list.
Obviously folks you still have to behave for all of December or they will have an emergency edit made!! 😂


Events at the dogs home are always fun but usually very busy and full on so Toby and I are very sleepy this evening so are having a nice relaxing evening!

Hope you’re all getting in the spirit and feeling festive! 🎅🏼


Adventure Day 02/12/17

Today we decided to go adventuring in the Peak District again, but today we went for the Monsal Trail which is the former Midland Railway Line.


It’s a nice flat route with plenty to see along the way, most of it relating to the old railway line but it makes for interesting pictures for sure!


This little old building is covered in graffiti and looks really out of place now in all the beautiful surroundings but as we witnessed today it often acts as a passage for little kids on bikes and again makes for really cool pictures!


There are also lots of little paths and trails off the main trail that we sometimes explore when we visit (depends on which car park I use) but today we just went for a straightforward there and back along the trail.


The Monsal Trail has tunnels which form part of the path which are slightly creepy but add to the fun of the walk!


Today we walked through 3 of them, all about 400m long, nice and creepy and very very cold!


The trail can be busy as it is popular with cyclists, walkers and horse riders but it depends on the day & weather etc.

Today I thought it would be busy with it being a Saturday and the weather be chilly but not rainy or miserable but it wasn’t too bad at all I saw a few people but not too many or too often!!


The route is really nice as Toby can be off lead for practically all of the walk. I do put him on lead in the tunnels as although they are lit the lighting isn’t the best and sometimes people on bikes appear out of nowhere, I’d much rather have a non-squashed Toby 😂


Today we parked at Millers Dale Station and walked towards Bakewell (I would have liked to walk all the way to Bakewell but we didn’t arrive til late morning and I didn’t want to risk having to find my car in the dark!!)

Millers Dale Station used to be the largest station on the midland railway line, having 5 platforms at one time, for those history buffs amongst us!


To park at Millers Dale is £4.50 for a full day slightly less if you pay for 4 hours (possibly £3.50 but don’t quote me!)

Toby and I walked 9 miles in total and it was a lovely crisp walk, we took lots of pretty pictures & we missed all the rain, makes for a very good Saturday if you ask me!!


Thanks for reading!