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More Smiles

I get these cute things and just have the need to share!  
More tickles for your Smile Department  :)

It's hard work remembering how to do this posting stuff LOL
I'll try harder in 2012.
Promise  :)
Just remember to Smile While You Still Have Teeth!

~Hugz. From. Penelope~


It's Me!


It's been a while since I posted, but today the urge came upon me and I had to share these two cuties with you.  May they bring a big smile to your already sweet and happy face!

See? I THOUGHT they would tickle your Smile Department!
Love ya!



Tree Hugger Me

You've heard the phrase before, but have you ever taken a moment out of your day to do this? Although some trees, like people, are more huggable than others, they all need a hug now and again.  I am a tree hugger, usually using the vertical technique.  I  have done this for many years, since I read  a book called The Secret Life of Plants.  I learned a lot from that publication!  LOL
Degree of Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: 10 to 30 minutes

Here's How:
  1. Find yourself a quiet park, forest, or woodland area.
  2. Walk among the trees until you feel comfortable in their presence.
  3. Feel the different bark textures with the palms of your hands.
  4. Smell the scent of the various woods.
  5. Absorb their life's energies as you look upwards to the sprawling branches overhead.
  6. Find the perfect tree that fits your mood. You will know which one is right for you.
  7. Vertical Tree Hug: Encircle it with your arms while gently pressing your cheek to the trunk being careful not to scratch your face. Squeeze tightly. Sigh deeply. Be one with your tree.
  8. Full Body Tree Hug: Sit upon the ground wrapping your legs around the base of the tree and at the same time embracing it with your arms.
  9. Up in the Air Tree Hug: Climb a tree. Sit upon a strong limb and straddle it with your legs. Bend forward and place your belly against it while wrapping your arms about it.
  1. Feel free to hug more than one tree if the mood strikes. Besides, other trees might get jealous. 
  2. You may like to take home a fallen leaf or nut as a keepsake from your new friend.
  3. Be sure to return each season to visit your tree. And don't be afraid to talk to it as trees are good listeners! Now, where possible, GO HUG A TREE!                               

The Platypus

The platypus is an egg laying mammal exclusively found in Australia.  They are very shy creatures, but a lot of work is now being done to learn more about them in the wild.  I hope you find the video clip, courtesy of National Geographic interesting to watch; it may give you an insight into these little mammals, indeed, may even be your first encounter with a platypus.  Their scientific name is Ornithorrhynchus anatinus.

These curios of Nature are found south from the State of Tasmania and along the eastern parts of Australia and just within the borders of South Australia, in freezing waters of the Australian Alps (yes, we get snow here!) to the warm rivers and lagoons of tropical Queensland.  They are classed as mammals because although they are egg laying monotremes, their young are suckled and reared on milk from the mother.  The female lays two, sometimes three eggs at a time, which are stuck together until they hatch after an unknown gestation period.  

All in all one of the strangest yet most endearing of creatures, they are favourites of mine..  I hope you enjoy this small glimpse into the life of a true Aussie, the playtpus, on this, our official Australia Day, 26th January 2011.

 Infant platypi with mother in nest

Well developed platypi young

Platypus country



Captions I Couldn't Resist!

I received these pix in a recent email, and loved the captions so much I decided to blog them.  I can't pick a fave, though the Bluebird Of Happiness is a strong contender!  Even if you've seen them before, I hope they make you smile, or, even better, laugh out loud!  A smile on your dial costs nothing, after all  :)  And animals are just the best!


Is Failure Real?

This is a prayer I received in my Inbox this morning.  I loved its message of hope and understanding, so I thougut I'd share it with you. Like many other folks, I often feel like I've failed at something; at least now I have a different perspective to soothe a troubled mind: I have learned, rather than failed.  This concept appeals to me immensely  :) 

Lord, are you trying to tell me something?
Failure does not mean I'm a failure;
It does mean I have not yet succeeded.
Failure does not mean I have accomplished nothing;
It does mean I have learned something.
Failure does not mean I have been a fool;
It does mean I had enough faith to experiment.
Failure does not mean I have disgraced;
It does mean I have dared to try.
Failure does not mean I don't have it;
It does mean I have something to do in a different way.
Failure does not mean I am inferior;
It does mean I am not perfect.
Failure does not mean I have wasted my life;
It does mean that I have an excuse to start over.
Failure does not mean that I should give up;
It does mean that I should try harder.
Failure does not mean that I will never make it;
It does mean that I need more practice.
Failure does not mean that you have abandoned me;
It does mean that you must have a better idea.

~ Penelope ~



Quite Interesting

I found this little piece and thought it was quite interesting  :)  I love hedgehogs, though ours here in Australia are a little different and are called "echidnas".  They have sharp spines and eat ants.

Today's advent image
According to Wikipedia:

Echidnas (play /ɪˈkɪdnə/), also known as spiny anteaters,[2] belong to the familyTachyglossidae in the monotreme order of egg-laying mammals. There are four extantPlatypus, are the only surviving members of that order and are the only extant mammals that lay eggs.[3] Although their diet consists largely of ants and termites, they are only distantly related to the true anteaters of the Americas. They live in New Guinea and Australia. The echidnas are named after a monster in ancient Greek mythology

Echidnas are small mammals that are covered with coarse hair and spines. Superficially they resemble the anteaters of South America and other spiny mammals like hedgehogs and porcupines. They have snouts which have the functiοns of both mouth and nose. Their snouts are elongated and slender. They have very short, strong limbs with large claws and are powerful diggers. Echidnas have a tiny mouth and a toothless jaw. They feed by tearing open soft logs, anthills and the like, and use their long, sticky tongue, which protrudes from their snout, to collect their prey. The Short-beaked Echidna's diet consists largely of ants and termites, while the Zaglossus species typically eat worms and insect larvae.[4]

The long-beaked echidnas have tiny spines on their tongues that help capture their prey.[4]
Echidnas and the Platypus are the only egg-laying mammals, known as monotremes. The female lays a single soft-shelled, leathery egg twenty-two days after mating and deposits it directly into her pouch. Hatching takes place after ten days; the young echidna, called a puggle, then sucks milk from the pores of the two milk patches (monotremes have no nipples) and remains in the pouch for forty-five to fifty-five days, at which time it starts to develop spines. The mother digs a nursery burrow and deposits the puggle, returning every five days to suckle it until it is weaned at seven months. The average wild echidna can grow as old as 16 years.
Male echidnas have a four-headed penis. During mating, the heads on one side "shut down" and do not grow in size; the other two are used to release semen into the female's two-branched reproductive tract. The heads used are swapped each time the mammal copulates.
Contrary to previous research, the echidna does enter REM sleep, albeit only when the ambient temperature is around 25°C. At temperatures of 15°C and 28°C REM sleep is suppressed.
Echidna anatomy in a nutshell

 Baby echidna, known as a puggle. 

Adult echidna

I find, however, that I prefer the look of hedgehogs overall; I think they are much, much cuter, so play the video above and I'm sure you'll be as captivated as I was!  :)  I just love their  little paws and sweet faces...Peace out!!!  Go Anteaters!!!

~~ Penelope ~~