Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Recently Read

Skip it if you wanna.

1.  A Long and Happy Life by Reynolds Price - Novel about a young woman in the 1950s struggling with her relationship with her boyfriend.  Interesting.

2.  Home is Burning by Dan Marshall - Account of the year the author spent taking care of his dying father.  The author comes across as a real smart-ass dick, albeit a self-aware one, so meh.

3.  What We Have by Amy Boesky - Recounting of how cancer affected the author's family.  Did not finish.

4.  Finders Keepers by Stephen King - My love of Stephen King (especially his older stuff) is well documented, but this one, a detective story rather than something in the horror genre, just didn't do it for me.  For one thing, a lot of the characters were carried over from an earlier book (Mr. Mercedes) and a lot of time was spent alluding to or explaining the characters' relationships with each other, which Do Not Care.  And, now that I think of it, a LOT of King's work has a central theme of Children Acting Heroically, which, I do not know of a whole lot of children (myself and my friends when I was a child included) who are particularly heroic or even very kind to each other, period, a lot of the time.  At least in the case of me and my childhood friends, we were more interested in serving our own interests than we were about anything outside of ourselves.  If a giant scary monster suddenly showed up in a room full of kids, I'm pretty sure the kids would ruthlessly climb over each other in a mad dash for the door as opposed to banding together to defeat the scary monster, but I digress.

ANYway, Finders Keepers, meh, I actually had a hard time staying interested enough to keep reading until the end, and only did so by taking it along for what I knew was going to be a slow day at the office.

5.  Waterwoman by Lenore Hart - Novel. Started out interesting, about a fisherwoman in the 1920s, but then turned into a standard romantic triangle story, so eh.

6.  Church of Marvels by Leslie Parry - Novel.  Interesting setting and interesting characters, but man, one bad, horrible thing after another kept happening.  I got about halfway through and realized I didn't want to read another half-book of terrible things to get to the (presumedly) happy last chapter and quit.

7.  The Tumbling Turner Sisters by Juliette Fay - Like Church of Marvels, this took place in an interesting setting, in this case vaudeville of the 1920s.  But unlike Church of Marvels, this book wasn't completely focused on tragedy, although bad things certainly occurred.  The characters were interesting, the storylines were good, and a lot of it was set in the area where I live.  Good book! I enjoyed it, and look forward to reading more from this author.

8.  Green Mountain Farm by Elliott Merrick - Memoir by an author who raised his family on a Vermont farm in the 1930s.  Good.

So that's what I've been reading lately.  How about you?

Monday, August 29, 2016

Mystery Bird

On Saturday I did some river paddling, and as always, the bird-watching was great.

Green heron:

Great blue heron:

Great Egret (a first for me on the river):

... and ... a mystery bird!

The neck looks cormorant-ish, but it's too light to be an adult cormorant - maybe an immature cormorant?

I don't know!  Do you?

Friday, August 26, 2016

State! Fair!

Yes, back pain or no back pain, there was no way in HELL I was going to miss the Fair.  So I grabbed a partner in crime and off we went.  This is my peril pal Laurie:

The first surprise came when we got to the gate and discovered they were letting everyone in for FREE for the first hour.  Yippee!

We saw the Birds of Prey show:

 The same girl pictured doing the bird show was ALSO doing the wild cat show that we saw later on.  She was a busy woman!

We admired the cool buildings:

Watched the contest judging:

and struck silly poses with giant farm animals:

 (yes, I do wear a fanny pack.  When I go to the Fair, I wear a fanny pack.  SHUT IT. ha)

Check out the horns on THIS fella:

I LOVE the quilt contest.  This quilt was all cats:

The sand sculpture was a work in progress:

We watched the wild cat show, which was interesting because all of the animals in it had been rescued from untenable conditions.  The Hawk Creek Wildlife Center was using the animals to get the word out about helping the ones still in the wild.  Someone had been trying to keep this serval as a housepet - it didn't go well.  Now it lives in a wild animal sanctuary with several serval buddies. 

All in all, it was a great day at the Fair, and I might even go back again if my back holds up!  Good times.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Ten Years On

Hey!  Guess what today is!  It's the ten year anniversary of this blog!

Ten Years.  Whew.

Let's see.  In the past ten years, I've:

Bought a house
Started fostering - this current litter puts me at over one hundred fosters!  Yikes!
Experienced the loss of three of my perma-cats (Rocky, The Runt and Little Girl)
Bought a couple of different cars
 Lost my Mom to Alzheimer's
 Learned how to kayak
 Stopped speaking to about 95% of my family
 Visited Texas
 Made some new friends and cast some old ones by the wayside
 Read a ton of books
 Learned how to paint
 Had a lot of fun

What will the next ten years bring?  Who knows?  Bring it on!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

The Scoop

So, Kidneystone watch 2016 continues.  And that's all I've got to say about THAT.  And using that as an excuse, I am now going to recycle content that I posted on Facebook this morning, because we INVALIDS get a pass.  Ha.  (but while I'm thinking about it, if anybody wants to know how to see my facebook stuff, just shoot me an email (rockycat24 AT yahoo DOT com) and I'll give you the deets.)

This morning I was scooping litterboxes, surrounded by my little kitten scoopervisors, when I decided to see just how much output this litter (and their mama) was producing.

So I scooped the litterboxes* and plopped the bag on the scale. Let's see ... call it 3.7 lbs. this morning ... times twice a day ... equals 7.4 lbs. a day. Multiply that by 7 days a week and we have ... 51.8 lbs. of output weekly! Congrats, kittens, you just won the poop olympics! You guys all get medals, and I ... need a drink.

*oh! oh! Now I know why they call it a "litter" of kittens! How did I never see that before?! haha

Friday, August 19, 2016


Okay, first off, if anybody has any sure-fire kidney stone remedies, I'd be happy to hear them, as the little bastart currently residing in my system really needs to get the old heave-ho, STAT.

Last Sunday, I decided to head out to Salt Springs for a hike up the falls.

Up we go!

View from the top:

The rock masons have been out in full force:

The recent rains have been helpful to the fungi:

At one point I was walking through a field where the vegetation was as high as my head.  Shortly after I snapped this pic I had a sneezing fit.  Gee, I wonder why:

Hopefully I'll be able to back on the trails again soon. 

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

I always assumed all that stuff on the walls was fake

Here's an interesting article about restaurant decor:

The Death of Flair

Which I found on this amazing website:

Messy Nessy Chic

Good reads!

Monday, August 15, 2016


Down a bumpy gravel road ...

Over a rough little portage:

to a space to camp out for the day!

By the time I got the lawn mowed at 10 on Saturday morning, it was already 88 degrees out and I was soaked in sweat.  So I tossed the kayak and a few toys in the wagon and headed for the lake.

I'd float around on the tube for a while,and then go for a paddle.  When the skies looked like rain, I'd head for shore and read for a bit before heading back out again once the weather cleared.

What a beautiful day!

Thursday, August 11, 2016

They said it really loud, they said it on the air, on the radio

Look, I'm famous!

Every Dog's Dream on Southern Tier Close-Up

Which just goes to show that I will, indeed, do anything for a cause.  Ha.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Foster Update!

The kittens are six-and-a-half weeks old now (where does the time GO?!) and growing like weeds.  We've had our share of goopy eyes and stuffy noses, but as the kittens get older they become more resilient, and everybody's doing well.

You know how they say that cats sleep for, like, twenty hours a day?  Kittens sleep for twenty MINUTES a day.  It seems that way, anyway:

But when they DO sleep, they sleep HARD:

They're good at cracking each other up:

AND driving each other crazy:

They like to tell spooky stories:

And the size difference between kittens who are (approximately) the same age can be amazing:

But little Jughead, there, continues to make progress in the weight department:

And Rosa wonders, "are they gone yet?":

Soon, Rosa.  Soon.  And then you'll have your peace and quiet back.

Monday, August 08, 2016

Costume contest!

I went to the reservoir to do some paddling yesterday, and happened upon a canoe and kayak costume contest!

Some people went for the basic look:

Although I did like this dragon:

Bird's nest?  I'm not sure:

Tiki bar!:

From left:  Beach scene, birthday party, Finding Nemo:

And!  My personal favorite:

Now I want a pirate kayak!  There's my next project ...

Friday, August 05, 2016

Cranky McCrankypants

So, today on my lunch break I went to the store and bought an entire key lime pie and ate a big old hunk of it, and then I crammed the rest of it into the tiny office fridge, and I'll take it home tonight where I'm sure I'll eat another big-ass chunk, and truth be told key lime pie is not even my jam, but I think I'm having a delayed and totally inappropriate reaction to the doctor's appointment I had yesterday.

I had to go to the doctor for a follow-up visit after my little meltdown this past Spring, and actually I've been doing really well, and I've stopped taking the Celexa completely and can't remember the last time I had to take a Zanax or whatever the hell it's called, but the doctor had scheduled this follow-up visit when I was in the LAST time, and so I went.

And all was well and we were chatting  and blah blah blah and she's asking me all the standard questions, and she asked if I'd had any recent weight loss or gain, which, COME ON, she's got my damn chart right in front of her (yes, I AM cranky AF), but ANYway, I said that yes, I'd gained a few pounds, and it was probably due to eating my own weight in soft-serve this summer.  And she laughed and then asked if I exercised, and I said yes, and she said something about eating less and exercising more, and blah blah blah and it frankly kind of pissed me off.

Because do you know what I weighed yesterday morning?  They weighed me practically when I walked in the door, and the weight was listed in the file that doctor had in front of her, as she encouraged me to eat less and exercise more.


I weighed one hundred and twenty-one pounds,  I am 5'-5" tall, and that doctor was sitting there telling me to MAKE SURE I EXERCISE ENOUGH TO KEEP MY WEIGHT DOWN.

I ... I'm still kind of pissed off about it, honestly.  (See:  Key lime pie for lunch. HAHAHAHA)

It reminded me of when I was a kid and still seeing a pediatrician (his name was Dr. Greene), and my mom took me in for a checkup, and I was 4'-11" and weighed 86 pounds, and the doctor started lecturing my mom about putting me on a diet.  A DIET.

My mom, being quiet, didn't say anything to the doctor, but when we left the office, she did tell me,  "Don't even listen to that doctor.  He doesn't know what he's talking about.  Your weight is fine."  And I mean, I KNEW my weight was fine.  I was a freaking BEAN-POLE at that age, FFS.

So there I was yesterday, all 5'-5" and 121 pounds, and I've never had a weight problem in my LIFE, and this piece-of-work doctor was telling me about the necessity of diet and exercise.

And if it was like that for me, I cannot even begin to fathom the type of sh*t that overweight people must get handed when they go to the doctor.

Now EXCUSE ME, I need to go get that pie out of the fridge.

Maybe it'll make me less cranky.

Wednesday, August 03, 2016

In the garden

I just realized it's been a while since I posted any garden shots; some of these pics (I'm looking at YOU, peonies) were taken over a month ago.  Right now the Rose of Sharon and hibiscus are getting ready to bloom, so it looks like I'd better take my camera out to the gardens more often.  ANYway, here is some of what has been blooming this summer: