Thursday, September 18, 2003 Yesterday was an awful day. Like I told Brian on our walk this morning, days like yesterday only happen to people in the movies. Yeah, we all have our bad days, days when little niggling things happen or go wrong, but maybe, at the most, we might have a couple a week. Maybe only a couple a month if we’re lucky. But all day long yesterday, little irritating, annoying things just kept happening. And it lasted until well after midnight.
But first, let’s catch up with the rest of the week. Last Friday, my mother-in-law had called about one of Brian’s brother’s dogs (Brian’s brother is on vacation, he’s back now, though). One of her eyes was really red. Brian wasn’t home when she called, so I got out the ointment I’d gotten for Junior (from Becky when we thought that Oliver had scratched Junior’s eye). I went over there and, sure enough, the eye looked really bad. These are Australian Shepherds, I think, and her eyes are part blue/white. And the part around the eye itself was all puffy and red. So, I put some ointment in. Brian and I went back twice a day until yesterday, because Tuesday evening when we went over, her eye was looking much better and she was very reluctant to have the ointment put in. It’s not like it was all that easy, anyway, she’s a good sized dog and very energetic. Add to the squirmy dog equation an equally playful sister dog, who thinks her sister is getting a treat. Even with Brian holding the sister out of the way, it was still a chore to get the medicine into the eye. If there’s still a problem, her owners are now home and they can take her in to the vet, but I don’t think they’ll have to.
I can’t really remember much of what I did last weekend. Must have been really exciting.
Monday, we got hot on working in the house. Brian pulled the file cabinets out from the wall in the office and I emptied the bookshelf and moved it so that he could get to the nasty carpet under it. He pulled up the carpet that was left, carpet that had been repeatedly peed on throughout the years, carpet that had been soaked through to the pad. Yes, it’s one of those things I did my best to keep clean, but it got ahead of me and that was all she wrote. Then we get the flood last week and we just couldn’t put it off any longer. It was pretty hard to get it from under the old rusty safe (gee, guess how it got rusty?). We’ve got a new safe to put stuff in, but it’s electronic and we’ve not taken the time to learn how to work it. We can’t get rid of the old safe just yet, because of the glass that we use as desktops. It’s pretty heavy and Brian will need help to remove it. We’ve got new office furniture out in the shop, it’s been there for close to ten years, is my guess. Anyway, after he got the carpet up, I vacuumed, then I shampooed the concrete (went over it a couple of times) and used OrangeGlo on the furniture. It did a fair job of cleaning, sure neutralize a lot of the urine smell. I pushed the file cabinets and bookshelf back where they belonged and rearranged some of the other things in here, like the printers (there’s a good chance you might see me on the office camera using one of the printers on occasion) and the stereo. Last weekend (now, I kind of remember something I did!) I went to Office Depot and saw a Fellowes printer stand. It’s plastic, easy to clean and it’s on rollers. I figured I could put my old printers on that. I could move one of the file cabinets and put this in its place. I’d connect it to the Gateway, that way I could use more than one printer at at time (wishful/hopeful thinking?) if I get many orders for calendars (did I mention I’m going to be making cathouse calendars for 2004? I’ve already started work on KOTM contest calendars for 2004; if your cat has either won or been a runner up, fill out this form if you’d like your cat added. Hopefully I’ll get enough entries for a couple of different calendars). Anyway, I pretty much got everything set up, still had a few things to do, but it looks and smells much better in here.
Early Tuesday morning, Ciara peed on me again. We’d just changed the bedclothes Sunday. I think she’d been holding it in for a week. I got out of bed, cussing, and had to wash myself off and change my underwear. I wasn’t a happy camper, I can tell you that. I made the decision to call the vet’s office and get her Buspar prescription refilled. I called the vet’s after eight and was told to call the drugstore, put in the prescription and they’d call the vet’s office. I picked the medicine up early afternoon and Ciara has been back on it. I did a bunch of laundry and we got the bedclothes changed before we went to bed. I was so tired.
Wednesday came. As usual, I got up early to feed the cats. I opened the door to let them out, then went into the kitchen and heated up the chicken. I split that between the cats on the counter, Oliver on the floor (we use small paper plates) and out to the garage, where I gave both Gracie and Lonee a little and I unblocked the garage door and set the cat door to in/out. Then I went down the hallway, heading for the office to give Lisa and Annie their chicken. As they dug in, I grabbed up the plate I put the NutroMax salmon on each morning and headed into the exercise room, where I store it. DeeJay was already in the room, eating his morning Purina One. I had doled out one scoop of food when I happened to look down at the plate. Startled, I dropped it. Ants! Ants all over the plate! Even when ants were getting into the office on a regular basis, they had left the dry catfood alone. Ants! I hate ants! I picked up the plate, put another scoop of food on it, then took it into the office where I searched for the ant trail. In the semi light, I thought maybe they were coming in under the patio door and I sprinkled some Sevin dust in the track (which didn’t please Brian because he has to take the door off of the track to clean the rollers now). As it got lighter, I noticed that the ants were not coming in from under the door, but from behind the file cabinets. I got my ant and roach spray and liberally sprayed along their path, back to the corner. No more ants.
Then the day progressed fairly normally, even with Brian home. I’d planned on cleaning up paperwork, paying bills for both home and business. I was working on this when I saw a trail of water leading into the hallway. It was about mid-morning and I decided to follow it. I did. And I found a wet cat at the end of the trail. DeeJay. DeeJay had fallen into the pool, it would seem. His head was completely dry, as were his ears. But the rest of him was soaked. I ran outside to see where he’d gone in and it was at a bad part of the pool. Not that I worry that the cats can’t climb out, mind you. If they can climb a tree, they can get out of that pool because the surface is little tiny pebbles, plenty for a cat to use when using its claws to climb out. But it was at the end where there’s more to climb to get out of the water. Most of the pool, there’s probably six inches between the top of the water and the edge of the pool, but where DeeJay went in, it’s closer to a foot.
I ran in and grabbed some large towels from the linen closet and found DeeJay in the bathroom, like a good boy. I shut the door behind me, put one of the towels on the floor and grabbed up a protesting DeeJay and sat him on the towel. I proceeded to dry him with the other towel. He didn’t like this at all. He nipped at me and spoke to me in a rude tone of meow. I got a bit of water off of him, then let him loose in the bathroom. He walked away from me, mumbling and sat by the tub, and started to do the work himself. I got out the hair dryer and set it at warm with a medium air flow. I picked him up and put him on the counter and pointed the dryer in his direction, fluffing up his fur as I went along. He really wasn’t pleased with this and he let me know. What I finally ended up doing was letting him go and just put the dryer on high and pointed it in his direction from a couple of feet away. He didn’t seem to mind this so much and although it took a little longer, we were both happy to be out of that room. He didn’t seem any worse for wear, but I kept an eye on him all day. He seems pretty tired this morning, maybe he’s sore from climbing.
This done, I went back to work. I had all of the mail opened and distributed. Personal goes here, business goes here. Then I input all the the company invoices into the computer. I went over to my internet banking and paid personal bills, then wrote a few checks for stuff that weren’t recurring, so no need to have them online. This done, I turned my attention to the company. I found I’d not reconciled the bank account in two months (didn’t see any reason, since we didn’t have any money coming in, I guess). Imagine my surprise to find that the last time I’d reconciled was June and the ending balance of that month in QuickBooks didn’t match the ending balance on the bank’s statement. This was really odd, as I had reconciled the account to the penny in July. Why didn’t it match now? I pulled the June statement out of the pile to be filed (I should have learned by now that it doesn’t pay to procrastinate) and started comparing check amounts on the statement to check amounts in QuickBooks. What’s this? Payroll checks are off? I found two that the federal withholding on the actual checks differed from the federal withholding QB was telling me had been withheld. I have no idea how this would happen. I adjusted the check amounts in QB and also had to adjust the liablity owing the gummint. That probably took close to an hour to get sorted out, but once I did it, reconciling July and August went smoothly.
Then I chose which bills to pay, got the checks printed out and in the mail. I was done with bill paying for the month and it was nice. About this time, Oliver came in and checked out the litterboxes. Then he pooped in front of one. Gee, thanks, Ollie. Then he went outside, came back in and proceeded to pee on the runner between the catcam chair and the copy machine. I started yelling. I’d just put it down earlier in the day. When he ran off, I picked the runner up and took it outside. I put down a clean throw rug.
About this time I figured maybe I should catch up on the filing. I got my little sorter out and started sorting. What’s this? Oh, great. Invoices I’d put on the copy machine that I’d never made copies of. We all remember the big stink from a recent year where I paid a vendor much more than he had coming. I paid from invoices that Brian hadn’t yet seen. He’s never been so angry with me in all of our life together. I put those on top of the copier with the intention of copying them when I was done with the filing. The filing went quickly (keep in mind, Brian hasn’t been working much and when he doesn’t work, he doesn’t generate paperwork) and I started making the copies. It was early evening and I was about ready to call it quits for the day. I got all of the copies made and put them on Brian’s desk. Then I went out to the kitchen to feed the dog and I also fed the cats. Since it was getting dark, I shut the garage door and set the catdoor to in only. I closed and locked the screen doors, so when cats came in, they would stay in (except Opie and Benny, who can go out the in only door). When I came back into the office, I started yelling. While I was out, Annie had gone over to Brian’s side of the desk and urinated on the towel that hangs onto his desk (he keeps a towel up in front of unpaid invoices so they don’t get sprayed by cats). And she urinated mass quantities. Many of the invoices and copies now had cat urine on them. I mean, they were literally dripping with pee. SCREAM!!! I took them all and hung them or put them on places where they would dry. (Which they’d all done this morning, now they’re in a place where she can’t pee on them.)
By this time, it was close to 8:30, almost time for the New York feed of the Tonight Show. I had shut down everything in the office and kicked back on the sofa. When the monologue was finished, I started to round up the cats, to make sure they were all in for the night. There didn’t seem to be too many. I shine the flashlight around. What’s this? Who’s this? Autumn? Crap! This is awful. She’s really hard to get in. I remember that from before. This is going to suck, I just know it. I had Brian open up the garage door, which would have been great if she’d gone to the garage door, but she went to the screen door. Then she ran to the garage door, but it wasn’t opened yet. *sigh* It took over an hour to finally get her in. It was almost magical how she could hide. At one point, she was under the steps in the doghouse on the bank (you can see it using the backyard camera). You couldn’t see her because she was behind all of the pine needles. I was able to touch her a couple of times, but that was it. Finally, Opie chased her and she was on top of the wood next to the shop. I was able to pet her, but I’m too short to grab her. So, I called Brian out.
Now, Brian, bless his heart, is afraid to be rough with the cats. He doesn’t want to hurt them, so he’s not as firm as he can be. He reached up to scruff her and she was so squirmy, he handed her over to me. But not before she bit his finger. I had her and had her on the ground where she was trying to get away, but I wasn’t letting go. Except I was holding her by her tummy, not her scruff. She ended up biting my hand and she did a great job of it. She was terrified. I let her go. My hand was dripping blood, but I wasn’t giving up. We looked all over the yard for her, Brian checking the pool area, me checking the bank and the rest of the yard. Before I found her so easily accessible, we’d opened up both garage and living room doors, so we had more cats outside now. Since neither of us could spot her, I made the leap that she’d gone inside. I got the rest of the cats in and started looking for her in the house. I couldn’t rest until I’d seen her safe. She was nowhere to be found. I went back outside and looked more. On the off chance (yeah, right) that Brian hadn’t looked more thoroughly, I looked under the pool pump again. And there she was. In the very back, against the corner. The only way to get her out was water. I turned on the hose and ran the water over the floor of where the pool pump is. The water ran down and flushed her out. I saw her up by the doghouse on the bank. I turned off the water and went after her. She wasn’t there. How she got away so quickly was nothing short of miraculous. On a hunch, I went up to the doghouse with the flashlight. She was in there. Just huddled against the wood next to the door, so you would have to actually look inside to see her. I was able to get her. She cried a little, but I had her scruffed with one hand and I held her back legs, for support, with my other (the bloody) hand. When we got into the house, I let her go and she ran into the family room and under the sofa. It probably took close to a half hour, but she ended up back in the bottom of the entertainment center, where she usually hangs out. I got some chicken for her and gave it to her, speaking to her softly, giving her little rubs on her face and back. She finally relaxed and started eating the chicken. Before the night was out, I had her purring for me, leaning into my fingers with her body and giving me kisses.
Brian had gone to bed at this point and I settled down onto the sofa. And Junior started to bark. He hasn’t barked like this in months. I’d get up and call him to the door. He’d come and lay down. Then, after I’d fallen back to sleep, he’d start barking again. I’d tell him to shut up. I finally went outside and the people behind us had let their dogs out of the dogrun. The neighbor dogs barking obviously didn’t bother them. But the neighbor dogs (like Junior) were barking at their dogs. Because the dogs were back by the fence, after some critter. Most likely a possom. A possom most likely related to the one taken away by Project Wildlife last week. There wasn’t much I could do at this point, so I went back to the sofa. Junior settled down for a while, but I was awakened again after one in the morning by his barking. And the dogs behind us were now barking, too. It had become a neighborhood thing. Finally, the people behind us got up and put the dogs back in the run. And whatever critter they were after got away.
I’m very tired right now. My hand, where Autumn bit me is swollen and sore. I think I’ll probably have a good sized bruise there as it heals. I woke up with a horrible headache.
This is the second time I typed this out. I lost it all the first, that was this morning. It’s now almost two in the afternoon. By two, I will be out by the pool, in my suit, soaking in the sun. I’ll most likely fall asleep out there.
Here are some pictures I took this morning of the flowers. For some reason, my dahlias aren’t doing too good. I think I may have oversprayed them with that bug killer last week.
Oliver checks it out
Have a great day!
Oh, I almost forgot! Yesterday I also updated my pinwheelmoment.com website and added the shirt back into the store. And this October, I’ll be having a raffle to give away one of each of what I sell at lisaviolet designs. So, check it out. And be ready to enter. One entry a day per person.