Welcome to Cats and Chocolate…

I’m a cat-owned, book-obsessed deaf writer. My aim is to inspire, and provoke thoughtful discussion, about a variety of topics – from feminism, body acceptance, deafness, and introversion, all the way to the writing life, creativity, and modern living. I often share recommendations and reviews, as I’m passionate about books and reading, watching a wide range of films, going to the theatre, travel, and cultural events – and hope that I help you find your next favourite book or film. I currently live in Greater London, so the city is just a tube ride away – a veritable cultural wonderland.

QwertyCoronacropped

Cats and Chocolate started in 2007, as a personal blog, when I was studying for an MA in Women’s Studies, and wanted to start afresh with a new online space. Since then, the blog has steadily grown as my focus has developed towards the creative life. I hope in the coming years that this website will further grow into a vibrant space for creative inspiration.

My other passion is for access, equality, and diversity – particularly since, being deaf, access continues to be a hot topic, despite the advances of subtitling, captioning, and other technology. I consider myself an ally and campaigner for a wide range of activist communities – campaigning towards a society that accepts people of all abilities, genders, and backgrounds.

lizanddan2landscape

Since I’m also a writer and essayist, I also share my own works-in-progress from time to time, and you can look forward to reading offbeat rough drafts or snippets of essays.Β MyΒ love of fiction and non-fiction has inspired me to write the stories that are missing: I enjoy writing stories about the mysterious, the weird and the unexplained. In time, I will be sharing my progress publishing the novels and non-fiction work I’m currently writing – and hope that my journey will inspire new and aspiring writers.

You can find me mostly on Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest, although this blog also has a page on Facebook.

Why Cats and Chocolate?

You might be wondering why I have chosen to keep my website name as Cats and Chocolate! Both these things – cats, and chocolate – are two things I appreciate very much. I have never lived without a cat.

chocoandmarmalade

When I was born, my parents already had a half-wild cat called Fulham (he was black and white), who was both the love and the bane of my early life. He was incredibly affectionate, until he became fed up and smacked your hand. Whilst he was an elderly cat, we welcomed Georgina and Quentin into the family (we didn’t name them, but their names stuck!), a stunning pair of gentle grey and white cats, who promptly had their ears clipped by Fulham’s assertion of dominance.

We were devastated when Fulham was run over one afternoon in the mid-90s. We never let the cats out of the front of the house again. About a year after Quentin and Georgina joined us, Georgie gave birth to a litter of kittens, and our parents agreed that we could only keep one if it was black and white like Fulham. Of course, since Georgina was mostly white with grey fur, and the majority of the kittens were a mix of brown and white tabby, imagine how strange it was to see one little black and white long-haired tuxedo cat with a tiny black smudge on her nose. We called her Flossie.

I’ve written a number of posts over the years about the three of them. They all had long, happy lives with us, and the last of them, Flossie, died when she was about 14, as did the other two. The months without her were some of the saddest months I’ve experienced, and the house felt incredibly empty. About two months later, we decided, as a family, to start looking for two cats to adopt, and in September of 2013, we adopted Chocolat and Marmalade.

It was our first experience of adopting adult cats, and it was interesting to see how they adapted to us and their new home. We had two years of wonderful memories with the two of them, when Marmalade, our shy ginger boy, went missing in September 2015. As of March 2016, he is still missing. We still have Chocolat, and she is amazing – a vocal and gentle tortoiseshell.

As for chocolate – it’s the simple pleasures in life that oftenΒ make all the difference!

‘You will learn a lot about yourself if you stretch in the direction of goodness, of bigness, of kindness, of forgiveness, of emotional bravery. Be a warrior for love.’ – Cheryl Strayed.

58 Comments Add yours

  1. geonorton says:

    Hi Liz,

    I am doing my MA dissertation on illness/disability, blogging and feminism and I wanted to let you know that I will be studying this blog for my research. If you would like to contact me please do at the email I have provided.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. philomela says:

    hey liz

    I’ve lost your email and I dont know if you know but FAF are organising a day to explore issues around feminism and disability. would you be interested in that? we have an organising day on the 20th of sept and the actual day is 29th of nov.

    I need to find some info on signers and hearing loops for it also, do you know where I can look?

    thamks

    Like

  3. Just dropped in, out of the blue! I saw the name of your blog and that made me click to see what was going on….Did you know that one can never give a cat chocolate? It can be lethal! But now I realize you love cats and chocolate, but you probably don’t give your cats C. I am relieved!

    BTW, I am across the pond…in Richmond, VA. We have a river her called the James and many streets and areas are named after English locations. Also, my sister’s husband is from Cromwell, I believe. I was in England only once, in 1981…an 18 day bus tour of 8 countries. In London I remember going to Hyde Park and Selfridges and then catching a train to Dover…to take a ferry to Ostende, Belgium. I remember this trip very well, as it was a memorable 18 days! Also, a great way to learn and remember geography and history.

    I read a bit of your blog and loved what I have read so far! My blog is in its infancy….its under the name j615 aka The Head Lion{ess}! As I mentioned I love cats totally. I have 2: Sushi and Willamina. Sushi is male and 10 yrs. old. Willy is female and 19 yrs old. We call her grandma.

    Well, I am glad to have read some of your writings!

    Judy AKA The Head Lion(ess)

    Like

  4. Liz says:

    Hi Judy! Nope, I realise the title must be misleading (which is a bit worrying, oops!) – I don’t feed my cats chocolate! I do feed myself chocolate occasionally though πŸ˜‰

    I love going on Ferry trips across the channel. When I was younger my parents, myself and my sister went on day trips to Calais as the Ferry fares used to be so cheap (they are still reasonable, for the most part). There’s something about going on a Ferry which evokes such a sense of adventure πŸ™‚

    I’m glad you like my blog, it’s always nice to chat to new people πŸ™‚ xxx

    Like

    1. imagennblog says:

      Hello Liz. This is my first time using this website, and so my first time on your blog page. I love that you are into reading all different genres of books, I’m the same but I always come back to adventure novels. I also enjoy fiction writing and I have from a young age, it just came naturally to me, and I have so much fun doing it. I have never gotten around to writing a proper short story (I am still only in highschool) but, I hope to become an author when I am older.
      You earned yourself a new follower, and I’m excited to see what other posts you have!

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Wendy says:

    Did my MA at York in Applied Educational Studies. And Sociology at Reading. I found your blog through the list on Harpy Marx’s blog

    Like

  6. cathygeagan says:

    Hi Liz,

    Found your blog through another book blog – it looks great and I am looking forward to getting to read through it. I love books, cats, tea and Lush so I’m sure I will find lots of interest here! I’m impressed at how prodigious you are, I find it really hard to put my writing ‘out there’ on my blog, resolution of 2011 is to post more often…

    Nice to ‘meet’ you πŸ™‚ Cathy

    Like

    1. Liz says:

      Hi Cathy, thanks for commenting! πŸ™‚ Thanks for reading too, I hope you enjoy looking back through the archives…I’ve had this blog for a while now, and I’m not completely sure what I’ve got back there – hopefully nothing too scary! πŸ˜‰ I’m the same really – sometimes I find I have months where I don’t post that often, whilst others are more productive. I like sharing my thoughts with other people, its lovely when people comment πŸ™‚ Nice to ‘meet’ you too!

      Like

  7. Madison says:

    Just found your lovely blog via twitter! -xo

    Like

  8. Sarah says:

    Well, you know I love your blog…so I thought I’d show you just how much… I am nominating you for the Liebster Blog Award. The award is given to a blog with less than 200 followers that deserves a little more recognition. There are a few simple rules that go along with the award. They are as follows as passed on to me:

    1. Give a shout out to the blogger who nominated you by linking back to their blog.
    2. Nominate 5 other blogs with less than 200 followers.
    3. Spread the good blog karma.
    Lastly, don’t forget to add the Liebster blog award image to your post.

    Lots of love xxx

    Like

    1. Liz says:

      Wow, thank you little one! ❀ Seems that December is definitely the season of good cheer…xxx

      Like

  9. Sarah says:

    I’m giving you another award…The Versatile Blogger award! You can find my post here: http://starsandrainbows.wordpress.com/2012/01/26/2nd-dose-of-blog-love/ xxx

    Like

    1. Liz says:

      Hi Kate, thanks so much! I used to love passing notes too…:)

      I’ll get onto this sharpish! xx

      Like

  10. Kate says:

    Apparently there’s a game of “Tag” going around. It seems a fun game… So I’ve tagged you πŸ™‚

    http://jeangreyphoenix.wordpress.com/2012/03/30/so-its-a-game-of-tag-you-want-eh/

    Like

  11. Just dropping by to tell you I’ve nominated you for the Versatile Blogger Award, but see someone else already did! Oh well I guess this makes you a double nominee πŸ™‚ I’ve blogged about it here: http://thecosycreative.wordpress.com/2012/04/15/the-easter-nest-awards/

    Like

    1. Liz says:

      Thank you, this means a lot! πŸ™‚ xxx

      Like

  12. Kate says:

    It’s award show time, once again. This time, you have the Sunshine Award coming your way. It looks like you need to host an award show of your own here. πŸ˜‰
    http://jeangreyphoenix.wordpress.com/2012/05/15/and-the-award-goes-to/
    Thanks for brightening my day, Sunshine. ^_^

    Like

    1. Liz says:

      Awww. I feel all fuzzy with these awards! I’m so glad my blog inspires people – that’s why I write. I needed a reminder today, so thanks so much πŸ™‚ xxx

      Like

  13. mwaba says:

    Hi Liz,
    This is so inspiring. We in Zambia have very little opportunities for the deaf. We would like to link up with you and learn from you.Mwaba

    Like

    1. Liz Ward says:

      Hi Mwaba, thanks so much for commenting. I really appreciate it, and I’m glad you find my blog inspiring – I always want to inspire people. The UK has good opportunities for deaf people, although access can still be a problem sometimes. A lot of Universities and colleges have communication support workers and interpreters, as well as notetakers and palantypists (speech to text for lectures etc). I think rights and communication for deaf people are improving, especially with technology. I hope we link up – I’m sure you can also teach me a lot too! πŸ™‚

      Like

  14. Aaran says:

    I came across your website and wanted to notify you about a broken link on your page in case you weren’t aware of it. The link on https://catsandchocolate.com/2009/10/05/quotes-and-links/ which links to
    http://amberdine.googlepages.com/beginning is no longer working.

    I’ve included a link to a useful page on quotes about writing that you could replace the broken link with if you’re interested in updating your website. Thanks for providing a great resource!

    Link: http://www.finestquotes.com/select_quote-category-Writing-page-0.htm

    Best Regards,

    Aaran S

    Like

  15. Jayde-Ashe says:

    Just saw your blog title and had to follow. Cats and chocolate. Add a big glass of gin to that and I am in heaven!

    Like

    1. Liz Ward says:

      Ah, gin. Am partial to a gin and tonic myself. Thanks for following! πŸ™‚

      Like

  16. simpacaci says:

    Hi Liz,
    My name is Sinem (Pronunciation: Ci-nehm), I have only just started working on a blog of my own. I love writing but I don’t even know where I should begin. So I am on a search quest looking at good page examples and how I should represent my self more efficiently on my blog. And I think that your about liz page is a great guide/example for me.

    Like

  17. Wow, so uniquely interesting. I’m still working my way up to a book although I’m told if my letters become much larger they could qualify as a short story πŸ™‚ I loved what I’ve seen, especially then Identity post. Looking forward to a regular diet from now on. Ciao, Susan x .

    Like

  18. The Invisible Sage says:

    Hello Liz, and congratulations! I have nominated you to receive the Shauny Award. Please go to http://theinvisiblesage.wordpress.com/2013/11/29/the-shauny-award/ for the details.

    Like

  19. BeWithUs says:

    All the best to you and happy blogging!

    Do have a wonderful weekend ahead, always~ Cheers!!

    Like

  20. bmj8 says:

    This is wonderful!
    I’m new to WordPress! Any new comments or pointers would be much appreciated!
    http://briannajackson1.wordpress.com

    Like

  21. I love your blog. Cats & Chocolate got my attention, my two favorite things and the content is lovely. xoxo Btw the yellow cat looks just like mine! ❀

    Like

  22. I love your cats names! Ours are Kitty and Peyton. Great Blog!

    Like

    1. Liz Ward says:

      Aww, thanks! It was a joint effort – my Mum came up with Chocolat and Marmalade was already called that by the rescue centre πŸ™‚

      Like

  23. baniaf says:

    Hey πŸ™‚
    your blog ist so cool and i hope mine would be also such as good. If you want you can visit my blog and leave a reply :). I hope so , bye

    Like

  24. Sammy D. says:

    Hi Liz – I am a new blogger, and your site came up in my “blogs you might like” suggestions. It was a good suggestion; I have enjoyed perusing your recent posts and will be back to spend some time. I like the quality of your writing, and am intrigued by your description of yourself and your interests.

    Like

  25. rita kowats says:

    In appreciation of the fine work and inspiration of your blog, I nominate you for the Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award. Mo was kind enough to nominate me. Her blog is a delightful walk through life. Try it! http://thecrazycrone.com

    Follow this link for a list of my other nominees, and for a template to use in nominating others: http://spiritualitywithoutborders.wordpress.com/my-nominees-for-sisterhood-of-the-world-bloggers-award/

    Like

  26. emeraldwake says:

    it was an honour to be here ,Regards , EM

    Like

  27. benzeknees says:

    Thanks for following Benzeknees! It looks like we have a lot in common!

    Like

    1. Liz Ward says:

      We do indeed! No problem πŸ™‚

      Like

  28. suchled says:

    Liz, It is sad and ironic that I found you blog due to the trouble that is happening. I got it from E. I am an old bibliophile. However I have a nephew who is a down syndrome sufferer and I have posted a few ideas concerning the fact that we too often see a person as being disabled, when in fact they are just different and have amazing qualities that others don’t have. If you get a chance to look at my blog search for Alexis.
    I am going to love your blog – I can see that already

    Like

  29. emtag2 says:

    What a lovely blog you have. I am very glad I stumbled upon it! I have enjoyed your most recent posts and look forward to exploring your archives! Please check out my (new!) blog if you get the chance πŸ™‚
    http://www.taggletalk.wordpress.com

    Like

  30. Jade Reyner says:

    Hi! Just picked up your blog and was immediately taken by the name so I had to check it out. My ‘about’ page states that I love cats and chocolate so it seemed rude not to visit. Then.. I realised that you are a writer like myself and that you are also from the UK! I am going to be following your blog with interest now and am really pleased that I came over for a visit. πŸ™‚

    Like

  31. Your blog is enchanting! The pictures, quotes, books, words – all of it is amazing! I look forward to reading more.

    Like

    1. Liz Ward says:

      Thank you so much πŸ™‚ I’m glad you’re enjoying it so far.

      Like

  32. elizz says:

    hi liz, i was camping in your blog and had a nice time digging into your archives and reading.. i like the way you write, words are smooth and so light.. really, i enjoyed it.. by the way, my kitties Star, Tiger and Boots are sending their hellos to your adorable furries chocolat and marmalade.

    Like

  33. crendina says:

    Hello Liz,

    nice to meet you! Your blog is just lovely, the photos are beuatiful and your writing cought my attention!I’m glad to discovered you!Cristina

    Like

  34. I see you do a Reading list as I do, only I include my reviews in mine it’s in the menu under 2015- Library on the Fly http://multiscreenmotivision.wordpress.com/ (and if you hoover on the Book nook one there’s other book related pages

    Like

  35. Hi there, Liz! I hope you’ll forgive my presumption (!!!) in nominating you for the Liebster Award over at my blog (yeah, I know I’m a little late in pinging you, but I was trying to work up my nerve… and kinda procrastinated) πŸ˜‰ I hope you’ll accept–despite having had another nomination before… πŸ™‚

    Like

  36. Hey Liz,
    I have been reading your blog for quite some time now and I love it. Can you just let me know from where I can subscribe to it so that I receive your posts in my inbox? I follow your blog, but I want to subscribe to it.
    Thanks. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Liz Ward says:

      Hi Ratika, thanks for commenting and I’m glad you like reading my blog πŸ™‚ For the email follow button, there’s a ‘+’ symbol in a circle when you scroll to the bottom of my blog. All the widgets are under that, including the follow by email button. I’m working on making this layout more user-friendly, hopefully I’ll be able to work out the CSS in the coming months! πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks for following my blog. πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Liz Ward says:

        That’s okay! Looking forward to reading πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  37. Hi,
    I stumbled across you blog while I was messing around in computer class. I really liked your other posts (from about two years ago) about depression. You described it very accurately. I’ve been depressed for over two years now and I couldn’t have put it into words like you did. I feel like you could make people who were always happy truly understand depression. You made me feel understood for once. Lovely work

    Liked by 1 person

  38. Madison Ward says:

    Just wanted to let you know I’ve given you a follow. I love the way you write and of course your blog topics are great! I look forward to reading

    Liked by 1 person

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