Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Rainy weekend

So, last weekend, it rained.  and rained and rained and RAINED, and now here we are at Tuesday and it's STILL raining.


Saturday morning, I went to a local garden center that was having their annual season-ending sale, and bought some day lilies, which are one of the few things the neighborhood deer will (usually) leave alone, to replace some weird bush-type perennial that kicked the bucket in my front yard some time back.  I also grabbed a pumpkin plant and a tomato plant, because the deer need a balanced diet, doncha know.

After that, I headed up to Ithaca and splashed around in the rain and bought out Hobby Lobby, and I found some other Very Cool Stuff that I'll be talking about later this week.  Sunday morning, I woke up with visions of Belgian waffles dancing in my head, so I headed for a diner and ate like I'd just gotten back from a week-long camping trip.  *urp*

I was supposed to do a road trip on Sunday afternoon to pick up yet another foster (I KNOW), but that got canceled so I threw on a rain coat and headed for the creek.

The paintballers have been busy reinforcing their perimeters:

and digging entrenchments:

and doing some general reinforcing work:

Insert standard old-fogy "Well, at least they're outside in the fresh air and not cooped up inside playing video games" comment here.

I played some with the macro feature on my camera:

This is my current fav photo:

Sunday afternoon I did a bunch of laundry and let the foster kittens out to romp around the house for a while and broke up a war between Tinks and one of the neighborhood cats in the backyard (TINKS!) and felt kind of relieved that even if I'd wanted to mow, I couldn't, what with all the rain.

And today I read that this has been the fifth-most-rainiest June on record in this area, and it's STILL raining today, so who knows?  Might end up fourth-rainiest, or even third-rainiest! 

Oh yay.

Monday, June 29, 2015

I went to Hobby Lobby and lost my damn mind

And I know, I KNOW, I am not even supposed to be SHOPPING in Hobby Lobby, because REASONS, but I was looking for some giant letters for a project at work, and neither Michael's nor A.C. Moore had what I needed, but Hobby Lobby did.

And normally I don't shop at Hobby Lobby ANYway, because we don't even HAVE a Hobby Lobby here in town so I have never even BEEN to a Hobby Lobby, but on Saturday I went to Ithaca and Ithaca DOES have a Hobby Lobby and so ... I went there.

And discovered the clearance aisles, i.e., NIRVANA.  Guys, the stuff was on sale for EIGHTY PERCENT OFF!

I bought this mirror:

Please excuse my looming face, there.  A lot of Hobby Lobby stuff seems to be distressed, and I am not a big fan of the distressed look, per se, but I plan on glamming all this stuff up anyway, so the base veneer wasn't really a factor.  That all of this stuff is AWESOME?  That was a BIG factor in my losing my mind in the clearance aisle.

 Here is a metal wall shelf:

Another metal wall shelf, which was reminiscent of antlers to me, so, SOLD!:

It's hard to tell from these pics, but those shelves are BIG.  I'm going to need some drywall anchors to hang those babies.

This cute sign, which is going to go in the laundry room, i.e., garage:

This lovely ceramic mermaid (I LOVE mermaids):

This pretty little bird statue (with Ponyboy lounging in the background):

And this shadowbox, for which I have BIG plans:

I bought all of this, PLUS some pipe cleaners and other crafty crap, for fifty-two bucks.


Most of this stuff went right into the foster room closet, where I store the birthday and Christmas gifts that I buy for myself.  I can't wait to see it all again!

So, yeah, I shopped at Hobby Lobby.  I knew I wasn't supposed to, but I did it anyway. 

and I'll do it again.  That store is AWESOME.


Thursday, June 25, 2015

If it quacks like a duck ...

Now that the weather's warmer and I've been sleeping with the windows open, I've been hearing something ...odd.

Seems like every night, around three a.m., I hear something that sounds like a duck quacking in the brushland adjacent to my property.

"quack ... quack .. quack ...", quietly, off and on, until I drift back to sleep.

Do ducks even quack at night?  What the hell am I hearing?  Any ideas?

Monday, June 22, 2015

In my little town

What happened in Charleston last week is terrible.  Innocent people gunned down in a place that should have been a safe haven. It's a tragedy.

And it made some bad memories come back, because a few years ago, it happened here.

I remember listening to the radio that day, and hearing the first confusing reports of something happening downtown, and hearing the sirens and seeing the police helicopters overhead from my office, across town from the Civic Association.

And I remember that it made the national news that night, and briefly the night after, and then my little town was left to pick up the pieces, and hold the church services, and plan the memorials.

So while I think the ongoing coverage in Charleston is certainly somberly appropriate to such a tragedy, I guess I just don't understand why the coverage is so overwhelming, in every branch of the media.

Is it because Charleston is a big city, as opposed to my little town?

Is it because the murderer is a white supremacist, and the victims are black, and it occurred in a place with a history of racism?

Is it because the murderer in my little town was Asian, and most of the victims were recent immigrants, and thus ... I don't even know ... somehow less "deserving" of media coverage?

I don't know.  Personally, I'm glad that the media didn't converge on my little town back then, at least not for more than the first day.  I think there's something to letting towns grieve on their own.

But as I leaf through page after page of coverage in the newspaper, and see story after story after story on TV and on line, and listen to continuing radio coverage, I have to wonder where all the media were back then.

Back in 2009. In my little town.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015


Where do cats learn how to shred toilet paper?  THEY LEARN IT RIGHT HERE AT FOSTER CAMP.  Mwa ha ha ha ha ...

"Don't pay any attention to those kitties behind me.  They iz ... they iz ... TESTING the toilet paper.  FOR YOU."

Head Counselor?  Why, Tinks, of course:

Monday, June 15, 2015

Chlorhexidrine Scrub

Yeah, so, it was one of THOSE weekends.

Friday night, I noticed that one of Tinks' ears was kind of goopy.  When I cleaned it out, it was also stinky, so I figured he had an ear infection.  The regular vet was closed for the weekend, so I thought I'd keep an eye on it, keep the ear cleaned, spread on some antifungal in case it was a fungal infection, and call the vet on Monday.  Saturday morning his ear looked good, with only a little bit of hardened gunk in it.

Early Saturday afternoon, I got home from running errands to find Tinks with blood running down his face.  His ear was a bloody mess, so I scooped him up, forced him into a carrier (Tinks haaaaates being crated), and hurried off to the local walk-in clinic, which thankfully was open.

Turns out, at some point in the past few weeks, something bit Tinks.  Bit RIGHT THROUGH HIS EAR.  And here's the thing about long-haired cats:  Their skin is really thin, which leads to it healing really fast.  TOO fast, unfortunately, because it leads to abscesses when wounds heal too quickly.  On Saturday, Tinks "blew out" an abscess.

They shaved his little ear, and cleaned it all up, and gave him a long-lasting antibiotic injection, and sent us home.  With Chlorhexidrine scrub.  Which I managed to administer exactly ONCE before Tinks decided that was enough of THAT and refused to come near me.


But!  In better news!  I did manage to give the Rainbow Horse a touch-up on his paint job:

He looks much ... brighter now.  A couple of coats of varnish and he'll be good to go.  I think maybe I'll put him out by the mailbox.  The neighbors ought to LOVE that.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Recently Read

1.  Cat Daddy by Jackson Galaxy - Memoir by the star of the "My Cat From Hell" reality show.  Interesting, and even though I've seen every episode of his show (several times), I still learned new things about cat behavior.  And drug abuse. (Galaxy is a former addict.)

2.  Okay, in trying to edit this post just now I lost a bunch of book entries, so, whoops.  We'll never know the identity of those missing books.

3.  A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman - Charming novel about a Swedish curmudgeon.  An enjoyable read.

4.  We Took to the Woods by Louise Dickinson Rich - Memoir about living in the Adirondacks in the thirties.  I really love homesteading books, mostly for the descriptions about how HARD it is to do, but according to this woman, living out in the middle of nowhere was easy-peasy!  No big deal!  I got a good ways in, leafed forward and saw that there was another 200 pages to go, and noped it.  No hard feelings.

5.  Winesburg, Ohio by Sherwood Anderson - Originally published in 1919, I'm sure this novel about small-town life was considered shocking in its day, but I found it a snooze.  Relegated it to the "bathroom book" for a while, but still couldn't finish.  Snore.

6.  Boy's Life by Robert McCammon - I recently re-read this one.  A coming-of-age novel set in the early 60's, this is one of my Top Five books.  Love, love, love.   Read it!

7.  The 19th Wife by David Ebershoff - This novel is basically two books, one set in the 1870s and one in modern-day, and they both sucked.  At over 500 pages, cutting it down to about 300 might have helped it, but ... nah. Stinkeroo.

8.  Revival by Stephen King - Novel about a shady faith healer.  Pretty short by King standards.  Good, but his quality has definitely declined over the years.  I wish he'd take a few years and write a really good book, because I know he can do it (see:  The Stand, The Long Walk), as opposed to cranking out a couple of mediocre books every year.

9.  All My Patients are Under the Bed by Louis Camuti - Old memoir by a vet who treated cats in NYC.  Hopelessly dated (in a way that James Herriot's books, of a similar vintage, manage not to be).  Mr. Camuti obviously felt that most of his clients (well, the owners of his clients) were blithering idiots.  It's a rare book about true-life cat stories that I can't get through, but this was one of them.

10.  Fierce by Barbara Rubinette Moss - Memoir.  I liked her earlier book, Change Me Into Zeus's Daughter, about growing up with an alcoholic father, but this one, about her tumultuous twenties, I found less engaging.  Still an interesting read.

So!  Not much to recommend there, except Boy's Life, which I cannot recommend highly enough.  What have you been reading lately?

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Meet the new crew

At this point, I am fairly sure that there are two boys and two girls.  I am, sadly, not very good at telling gender until they're a little older.  ANYway, they're all doing well and full of beans.

It was time to pick out names.  I would LOVE to name a litter of four Eeny, Meenie, Miny and Moe, but I don't think it would be exactly fair to the one who got stuck with "Meenie" (i.e., "Meanie"), so I abstained.

THIS one practically named himself:

That's Gizmo.

THIS pretty little tortie girl has ears that look like they've been tipped with paint:

So I named her Tippy.

THIS dude is sportin' a 'stache:

So I stuck a hat on him and named him Poirot.  BONJOUR.

And THIS little sweetie?:

She is what is called a "Mackerel" tabby,  because the broken-up tabby stripes on her sides (supposedly) look like fish bones.  I was going to go ahead and name her Mackerel, but I'm pretty sure she's a girl, so then I thought, well, Mackerelle, but then it got shortened to Mackie, and she's kind of a tomboy, so Mackie it is.

Gizmo, Tippy, Poirot and Mackie.  There ya go.

Monday, June 08, 2015

Fabulous Finds

On Saturday, I found these awesome shoes at a thrift store:

And on Sunday, look what I found at the flea market!

 Once I touch up his paint, he will be a faaaabulous companion to Mr. Z. 

Sodapop would like you to know that he disapproves of this foolishness.

Thursday, June 04, 2015


Yep, it's another batch of kittens!

Four, five-week-old former bottle babies, who are now eating solid food.

I was not able to get them all in one pic last night, but I'll keep working on it. 

Look ... one of them has a mustache!

Unlike the last litter, these babies are EXTREMELY vocal.  There go my ear drums.

I THINK there are three girls and a boy.  Name suggestions welcome!

Monday, June 01, 2015


So, I was supPOSed to take the foster cats back to the rescue yesterday, but that didn't happen, so I went shlepping out in the woods instead.

Oh, it was a dark day, totally different from Saturday, which was bright and warm and sunny.

But the woods were full of wildflowers.

I walked a snowmobile trail:

and found these pretty, lacy flowers.

But then ... BUT THEN ... I came across something that I'd only seen in pictures before ...

Dun dun dunnnnnnn ...

GIANT HOGWEED.  (cue foreboding music here.)

Giant hogweed is extremely poisonous.  Like, kill-you-dead poisonous.  Needless to say, I gave it a wide berth, seeing as how I can break out in a rash just looking at poison ivy. 

Once I got done walking, I had to go and get some soft-serve.  Just to soothe my giant-hogweed-rattled nerves, dontcha know.

And to ADD to the "odd things always happen to me" file, on Saturday, I had a half a loaf of stale bread to get rid of, so I tossed it into the brushland behind the back yard for the birds.

A little while later, I saw a FOX running across the back yard with a slice of bread in his mouth.

Because ... foxes need carbs?  Yeah, I have no idea.  It's just Wild Kingdom run amok all over the place around here.