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      Tuesday, September 02, 2003

03:01 PM - 09/02/2003

The topic: We’re broke

Tuesday, September 2, 2003  I can’t even believe how broke we are.  Brian’s work still hasn’t picked up and we’ve been spending money as if he had all of these jobs lined up.  But he doesn’t.  Earlier this summer he’d tell me “it will be okay” and I took that to mean that something was on the way.  But it isn’t.  He finally got his truck fixed, the one that had the broken transmission.  And I found out last week that he spent nine thousand dollars more on that than he needed to get it working again.  He said it would have cost less than a thousand had he not done other stuff.  *sigh*  Add to that the cost of that ‘69 Bronco he just had to have, that’s over seven thousand now.  I figure if his tranny hadn’t broken, that’s seventeen thousand dollars not spent.  And if he’d only done what needed to be done, well, that would have been a thousand spent.  *heavier sigh*

Of course, I’ve spent money this summer, too.  I finally started burning CDs for the vehicles, since we’ve got the stuff to do it with, I just needed supplies.  Like blank CDs, jewel cases, labels, inserts….  I found some great deals.  I’d gotten kits a couple of years ago, and I’ve found the kits are pretty expensive, when you compare to generic product.  I found a place where I can buy blank 80 minute digital audio CDs for thirty eight cents each.  That’s a great price and I don’t feel so bad when I screw one up and end up not using it. 

And with my weight loss this year, I’ve gotten (needed!) new clothes.  If I’d ever thought that I’d have lost this much weight this year, I’d most likely not have thrown out all of those clothes I did when we redid the bedroom.  It just makes me sick to think of it.  And I do have quite a bit of new material, too.  So, I can make more clothes, which should help.  Tops aren’t all that hard to do.

And I’ve been shopping QVC.  Bad idea.  I love some of their stuff, good thing I won’t spend over a hundred an item.  The last thing I got, though, I sent back (a ring that didn’t fit) and I haven’t ordered anything since.  I did see a new ring that I absolutely love, I keep going back to look at it, but I won’t buy it, not at this time.  Hopefully it will still be around if and when we can afford it.  Maybe if my mom gives us money for Christmas, I’ll do it then.

I have been setting a little aside for Disneyland in October so that shouldn’t be too bad.  And last week, we got our passholder newsletter with advertised special rates for the hotels.  I checked on the Paradise Pier (the least expensive of all the Anaheim Disney hotels) and it was $180 a night, close to what we were already paying, not a deal at all.  But the reservationist checked the Disneyland Hotel (I protested “but they’re always more than the Paradise Pier!”).  Guess what?  They aren’t this year.  We’re saving over a hundred dollars by switching hotels!  That’s a big help.

Brian is finishing up a job today that should have been done over a week ago.  But he couldn’t finish it up because the stupid supplier of one of the products he needed kept sending him either the incorrect product or the product was bad and he had to reject it.  And when they had to re-do, they didn’t fasttrack it, he went to the end of the line.  That’s just plain wrong.  It finally showed up late last Friday.  We’ll bill this out as soon as he’s finished, but this guy won’t pay until next month.  That’s just how he works it.

So, right now, I’d like to thank all of you who are either buying from the store or just donating funds.  Because, to be honest, I’ve been wondering if I might have to start shutting down some of my websites, which I really don’t want to do.  The funds I’m getting are going towards payment to the hosts and upgrades to the programs I run. And, in a couple of months, I’ll be starting a free monthly raffle for lisaviolet design stuff.  Teeshirts, puzzles, and hopefully catnip mice (I’m going to make my own and use our own homegrown catnip, which has done well this year).  Stay tuned.

Brian’s brother is taking a vacation after this job is finished and Brian’s going to try to start, then finish, the dining room and living room.  We’ve got everything we need, the floor tile, drywall (the cats have ruined one wall in the dining room), and paint for the ceilings and walls.  To have that done by our Disney trip would be great.  The weather is mild enough now that the cats won’t mind being outside, Brian can do it during the day.  Yeah, I’d like that.

We went to a movie yesterday!  It’s been years since Brian has been.  The last one I saw was “A Beautiful Mind”, the one I took my mom and mother-in-law to when it first came out.  And I would like to see “Open Range”.  Gah, I can’t believe how much it cost.  We went to the matinee, which was $6.50 each.  When Brian and I used to go once a week (it was a Thursday thing), it was $6.00 full price, $3.50 for the twilight showing.  *koff*  And the refreshments?  Double gah!  Five bucks for a “big” bag of popcorn?  I had some money Brian had given me last month and I bought the treats.  We shared a bag of M&Ms, shared a large diet Coke and a bag of popcorn.  Brian can’t do popcorn, though, which we found out.  So, the bag didn’t get eaten, only ate about half of it.  Next time, I’ll get a small bag.  And we’ll bring our own little bags of M&Ms. 

It’s cooling down a little and the cats seem to like it.  The flowers are doing so well.  Except for the places the cats like to stretch out, the flowers aren’t doing well there at all.  *lol*

DeeJay has been leaving some wonderfully large, well formed, firm poops.  It looks like the Purina One is good for him.  The only problem is he likes to eat it in the exercise room and I still keep forgetting he’s in there.  That’s how I know how nice his poop is. 

I’ve moved the food farther from the office and Annie now has to trot down the hall a little way to eat.  Not much, but I’ll gradually move it farther and farther, then hopefully, she’ll be eating out of the same feeders the other cats are. 

Autumn was keeping herself under the sofas in the family room, but she’s moved to the bottom of the kitty entertainment center.  I’ve been making a point of reaching in and petting her until she’s been purring for a while.  It’s not very comfortable for me, but she seems to like it and I want to keep a connection with her.  I’d sure like her to not be so anxious.  It only eggs the other cats on.  I caught Daniece (DANIECE!) teasing her yesterday.  Daniece doesn’t do things like that.  I wasn’t very happy about it.

All of the outfronts are still around.  OC has lost weight, I don’t know if it’s a health thing or a summer thing.  He still goes back across the street in the mornings, though, doesn’t come back here until evening.  Sometimes he sticks around fairly late into the morning, but more often than not, he’s gone during the day.  Repete hangs around, as does Little Bit.  I rarely see KittyMeeze across the street.  A couple of weeks ago, when Brian and I were outside watching the stars, we also saw two young possoms making their way to the front of our house.  Most likely to eat.  The people behind us are redoing their backyard and they’ve made a new dogrun for their dogs.  It’s at the side of the house and the dogs are kept there pretty much 24/7 when the people aren’t outside with them.  This makes it easier for the small animals on the fence at night, no more of their weimariner throwing herself against the fence to make the small animal fall into their yard, where it woule most likely lose its life. And it sure cuts down on the barking.

The fur on Junior has almost completely grown back in.  You’d never know he’d had surgery.  He seems thin to me, it may be the heat.  I guess it kind of worries me because he’s still got a good appetite, eats all that he’s given.  He did puke breakfast back up one day last weekend, but he’s been okay since.  Yesterday morning he decided he’d come inside for a while. That was fine as long as he stayed where I could see him, but he got bored and started checking out the house.  And there are too many little bowls of catfood around for me to be comfortable with him on the loose.  Because I know he’d eat as much as he possibly could, the minute he had the chance.

Well, it’s two in the afternoon and I really wanted to get paperwork done today.  I want to see where we stand, how bad off it really is.  I don’t know what we owe to the company’s suppliers.  I’m almost scared to see it.

      Monday, September 08, 2003

02:24 PM - 09/08/2003

The topic: It’s still been pretty quiet

Monday, September 8, 2003  It’s been pretty quiet around here.  We were worried about SpotTee because he didn’t come around for a few days, but he showed up Saturday afternoon for food.  We hadn’t seen him in over forty-eight hours.

The cameras and weather station are on, but I haven’t been spending as much time online as I have in the past.  I think the weather has an awful lot to do with that.  It’s much easier to sit in front of the monitor with all the doors and windows open and listening to the sounds of outside, like dogs barking in the distance and the breeze through the trees (like right now).  When it’s so miserably hot and humid like much of this summer has been, I honestly don’t feel like doing much at all.  Keeping up with laundry and litterboxes is an effort, but it has to be done.  It seems like they all get done in slow motion.

We ended up getting a new freezer yesterday.  We got it at Home Depot and I just finished moving the last of the food from the old freezer.  We’ve had the old freezer almost as long as we’ve been married.  It’s a Montgomery Wards model, which will give you some idea of its age big grin.  The old one is a chest model, the new, an upright.  So far, I think I’ll like the upright (although the capacity isn’t as large) better than the chest.  For one thing, I’m short and it was really hard for me to get to stuff in the bottom.  And it ended up getting covered in ice.  We ended up tossing a huge garbage can full of old food, steaks, lots of buns (hamburger and hot dog) and leftovers (what the hell was that?).  And since earlier this year I cleaned up the pantry, I can get to the Deni food saver (it sucks out the air and seals bags) without having to dig through other devices and I think it should be easier to be more organized.  If we do get steaks in the multi-pack (which we do at CostCo), maybe now we’ll not end up losing over half of them into the dark hole of the freezer chest.  I’ve put all of my diet dinners in there and I must admit, it’s much nicer being able to see right off what I have (I buy them on sale, when they’ve got them four/five for ten dollars, and I’ve got quite a few, they’re in there book style now) and not to have to dig around in the coldness; my fingers would go numb.  I felt kind of bad for Lonee, because she likes sleeping on the chest, but I notice that Katie was on top of the new one this morning, so it shouldn’t be too long before Lonee finds a new spot.

My mom is in the process of taming a kitten who showed up by her home recently.  She’s calling the kitten “Baby”.  So far, she hasn’t been able to touch this feline, but Baby is letting mom sit by her while she eats the food mom puts out.  Baby does seem to like the other cats, is special friends with Target, an unneutered male cat (mom knows she needs to get him in to get fixed, but he’s like Jackie, I guess, one of those cats that it’s wise to not reach out and grab, not if you value your skin).  This specialness leads me to believe that Baby, is indeed, a litte girl.

I liked the soundtrack of “Pirates” so much (the movie we saw last weekend) I just ordered it.  I wish that Depp kid lived on our street.  I think he’d be fun to have around.

I was down another two pounds Friday.  I’ve got nine more to go until I’ve lost fifty.  Woohoo!  Here’s hoping I can lose that by my birthday, doing the “fifty by fifty”.

DeeJay puked all over my feet this morning.  In bed.  Brian was pretty quick about pulling up the comforter (I was on top of it) and got it before it hit the rest of the bedclothes.  That’s in the laundry right now.  There was some grass in the vomit, so I guess his tummy was a little upset.  Since I’ve been giving him the Pepcid, he’s not been doing this nearly as often as he had been. As a matter of fact, I think this is the first time he’s thrown up this much since I started him on the antacid.

The backhoe is gone.  We put it back in the heavy equipment trader for a thousand dollars less than Brian had originally asked.  He got more calls on it this weekend than all of the other weeks put together.  And the first guy that asked about it, got it.  So, the money we got is going back into the equity account.  It would be nice to piss some away, but haven’t we been doing that all year with money we don’t have?  Time to show a little responsibility, I guess. 

What else?  Hmmm….  I can’t think of anything.  It’s been too hot to be eventful, I guess. 

Angel is getting more and more affectionate as the weeks go by.  She’s spending less time in the garage and more time in the house.  In the evenings, she can be found cuddled up next to me or sometimes, Brian.  She still looks as little and kittenish as ever to me.  I took some pictures of her last week and was surprised at how adult she looks.  She sure doesn’t look like this to me.




And here’s a picture taken of Kirby after a little nip party we had on the patio a couple of weeks ago (it was live on the patiocam):


I notice I haven’t been taking too many pictures, either.  Damn, where did my enthusiasm go?  Did the heat melt it?  Looks like.

      Wednesday, September 10, 2003

12:38 PM - 09/10/2003

The topic: What a horrible morning!

Wednesday, September 10, 2003  This morning has been absolutely horrid!  Well, the early, early morning that is.

The weather has cooled considerably, which is really nice for sleep, you know?  It’s so hard to sleep when you feel all sticky, which happens to me when it’s so darned humid.  I’ve actually been looking forward to a good night’s sleep, one where I can actually slide under the covers and have kitties cuddled up with me.  And last night was the first night in months that I’ve been able to do that.  Since it’s getting dark earlier it’s pretty easy to get the cats in earlier and I went to bed around ten, I think.  Imagine my surprise to get woken out of a sound sleep about two thirty in the morning by Brian saying “What’s that?” referring to a noise in the house.  “Oh, a cat probably fell out of the window”, I replied, ready to go back to sleep.  “No, it’s water!”  He jumped out of bed and ran out of the room.  “Spit!” he yelled (except it wasn’t spit that he yelled).  “We’re flooded!”

I quickly got out of bed and followed him into the kitchen, my feet covered in water as soon as I stepped out of the bedroom (the tiled bedroom floor is higher than the rest of the floor, same for the family room).  The hot water pipe under the sink had come apart.  The water had been flowing for some time.  The dining room and living rooms were flooded, the entry way was flooded, the hallway in front of my bathroom, which leads to the office, was flooded, as was the office.  The exercise room didn’t seem to have gotten much moisture, nor did my bathroom, although it was starting to spill over the sill on the floor.  Water was also slowly flowing over the sill in the laundry room onto the patio.  This is going to be fun. 

Brian told me to get my machine and I said “that’s not going to do much” and he agreed, he went back to the shop to get his ShopVac.  Meanwhile, I checked out the cats and all seemed to be okay, none the worse for wear.  Mystie was the most spooked of them all, Pete thought it was time for us to open up the house so he could go into the backyard and do his little Petey hunts.  While I was in the the garage, I got the old SteamVac and hauled it into the hallway, plugged it into one of the outlets in my bathroom and started it up, started sucking up some of that water.  It was slow going because it doesn’t hold much, but an hour later I’d made a great deal of headway into the office.  I told Brian (who was working on the other side of the house) that I wasn’t going to go walking this morning.  I finally got the office mostly dry and finished the hallway.  Then I did the entry way and into the living room.  The bottoms of the cat trees are soaked with water.  Brian had a lot more to do than I did, because he had to pull out the washer and dryer in the laundry room and the refrigerator in the kitchen.  A little before four, I opened up the sliding screen doors and let the cats out (after I’d split a can of people tuna between them in the garage).  I emptied out the dirty water tub on the SteamVac and wrapped the cord up and put it away.  I got a carton of lemon yogurt, a spoon and turned on the tv to the History Channel.  After I ate the yogurt, I helped Brian a little in the laundry room and he was trying to see exactly what the problem was under the sink when I fell asleep.  He said that he finished around five, laid on the loveseat, watched tv for about a half hour, then went to bed.  He got up at a quarter after seven this morning.

I mentioned to him how wet the patio was and it seems that Junior had a bad night.  He’d thrown up on the patio and also had some very runny stool.  He did eat his breakfast with relish and seems to be doing fine now.  I think it was the tomato he ate yesterday, one that I pulled off of the plant that had been attacked by worms.  I didn’t think there would be a problem with him and tomatoes, since he’s snuck them before, but I was obviously wrong.  I cleaned up the yard not too long ago and his stools are looking normal again.

For some reason, I really like this ring, over at QVC.com:


I kept looking at it and I finally ordered it.  It’s on a waitlist because so many people ordered it.  I hope it’s here by my birthday, but I’m not holding my breath.  It’s sterling silver and has little Diamonique stones around it.  I thought it would be a great pinky ring.  Or right ring finger ring.  It’s *koff* $68 but I’m just drawn to it, not something that usually happens.  Some of the stuff they carry is flat out butt ugly, but I really like some of the jewelry they carry.  All of my sparklies are now Diamonique.  I’ve got two carat solitaire rings, one sterling, one gold, that I wear with plain bands on either side.  I rarely wear my real diamonds any more, because I’d just hate to lose them.  I did lose a diamond necklace (bad clasp) years ago and I was heartbroken (the stone came from my original wedding set).  Now, I don’t have to worry about it.  I’ve just started looking at their stuff again this summer.  Luckily, I know that I wouldn’t really wear all the stuff I like looking at.  I’ve grown up, I guess.  Plus, we can’t really afford it right now.  I’m hoping mom gives me money for my birthday and I can use that to put towards the cost of that ring. 

Anyway, right now, the furniture in the living room is moved around, the cat trees are propped against the furniture so the bottoms will have a better chance at drying out.  It’s nice that the humidity has dropped because that will help them to dry out more quickly with less damage.  When I told my mom about it this morning, she said “well, it’s a hell of a way to wash the floors, now you don’t need to do it”.  “Mom, I washed the floors this past weekend.  They didn’t need to be washed.”  And they look really dull now that the sun has come out, so I have to wash them again.  I’ll wait, though, until Brian has fixed the problem under the sink.

DeeJay has had a couple of bad days.  I kept waiting for him to puke yesterday, but he never did.  He must have eaten something that didn’t agree with him, and I have no idea what it might have been or where he got into something.  He’s feeling better today, has a voracious appetite.  He even wanted to eat last night when we were cleaning.  The exercise room was quieter, too, so I didn’t mind him being in there.

I started cutting back the catnip yesterday.  I probably got a third of it drying right now, I still have more to cut back.  I just don’t have any place I can lay it out to dry.  *sigh*  There’s just so much of it.

Well, Brian’s home, guess I should go.


Well, a woman from Project Wildlife just left.  Remember the Dogloo we got from the neighbors when their dog died?  And that I had Brian hide it behind some bushes and palm trees right outside the entry gate?  With the opening at the metal so that smaller animals can get into the Dogloo safely and larger animals can’t get to them? 

This afternoon, I went outside to see if the mail had gotten here.  KittyMeeze was laying on the driveway under one of the vehicles.  I looked around for Little Bit, but didn’t see her.  Just out of curiosity, because the weather has cooled off a little, I looked in the Dogloo.  No feline, but there was one of the small possoms we’ve seen coming to the front.  Well, that’s cool, I thought.  A little while later, I went out with the flashlight to see if possibly, the other possom was here, too.  No other possom, but the one in there was injured.  I could see raw skin on the side.  Now, if I hadn’t seen the injury, I’d have let well enough alone, but this guy looked to need some vet care.  I remembered Project Wildlife, came inside, searched for them online, found the number and called.  I was referred to a pager number for people who help possoms.  Within minutes, my page was returned.  The soonest she could be out was between five thirty and six thirty because she had two other possoms she had to get.  We discussed how I could make sure the possom would stay in the shelter and not run off by the time she got here.  I ended up putting one of the cat gates across the opening.  It wasn’t opened up and it was thick enough that it nestled snuggly between the front of the Dogloo and the wall and iron of the fence.  I noticed that there was a trail of ants going into the Dogloo and they were on the possom.  I said a little prayer that the possom would be okay.

I checked on it a few more times and it was still alive.  She got here about fifteen minutes ago and she and Brian were able to get the possom from the Dogloo (she just picked it up by its tail and dropped it in the carrier box).  Brian was pretty amazed and she said that possoms look meaner than they are.  While she was holding the possom up, we all got a good look at the wound.  It was a large section of flesh taken from the back of one of the back legs.  No blood and it looked pretty clean, not jagged.  She said it looked like it had gotten trapped in wire or something.  And that it would definitely need vet care.  I filled out the form she brought and gave her a twenty dollar bill (I have a little money I’ve been saving for the trip to Disneyland next month).  I showed her the fence and the barrier for our cats and showed her where the possoms come from.  She asked if it would be alright if she brought the possom back when it was healed, released it back to where it came from.  I said sure, we didn’t have a problem with that.  She was relieved and she was glad that it was okay, because it would be back in familiar territory with familiar faces. 

Anyway, I hope the possom is okay. She said she didn’t think the injury was a life threatening one and that it would most likely be okay.


      Saturday, September 13, 2003

03:33 PM - 09/13/2003

The topic: What a nice day it is

Saturday, September 13, 2003  It’s absolutely gorgeous outside.  After I finish this entry, I’ll be heading out to the pool, even though it is mid afternoon.

I’ve been busy and right now, I just don’t feel like doing much at all.  I’m supposed to be moving stuff around here in the office so that Brian can pull the rest of the carpeting out.  The carpet under the file cabinets and under the safe and bookshelf were soaked in that flood last week. And boy, howdy, did it start smelling as it sat there.  I moved one file cabinet yesterday and Brian was able to get quite a bit of wet carpet up, so today it isn’t as bad.  But it still has to be done.  Later.

He’s gone to the property today.  I made him go.  He said “you hate me!” I said “you’re driving me nuts; go.”  He’ll be home this evening.  He’s been home a little more since his brother is on vacation.  This next week he expects to work on the house, try to get the dining room and living room done.

There’s something about 2:30 in the morning.  Last Tuesday, the broken hot water pipe.  Wednesday, Ciara peed on me in bed.  Thursday night (I slept on the couch, not having gotten around to changing the bed clothes; Brian’s side was okay…you get used to it when it happens so often…*grin*) one of the cats knocked the Pyrex water bowl off of the counter onto the kitchen floor.  I didn’t know what it was, got up to investigate and clean up the mess. And when I went into the kitchen and turned on the light, there were millions and millions of….*shudder*...ANTS!  They were on the counter, they were on the floor.  They had even made their way into the dishwasher, for cripe’s sake.  Nightmare city, I swear!  *Ish*  Then, last night, I slept on the sofa again, not having taken a shower (too tired) after we changed the bedding.  At 2:30, Pete starts crying.  He wants out.  He goes from one sliding door to the other.  This went on for over an hour.  At one point, I called him to me and he let me smurgle him for a while, he kneaded me and purred and headbutted me, but then he was right back to wanting out.  I finally let them out at 3:55 or thereabouts.  Tonight, we’re shutting the sliding doors.  Maybe if he can’t sniff out them, he won’t cry to go out.  *Yawn*

Hey, Ceegee of tigger-cam.com posted a link to a really cool tute on PSP.  Well, the tutorial was for PhotoShop, but it worked with PSP as well.  I did a couple of pictures with it.







Pretty cool, huh?  I’m going to start work on a cathouse calendar for the 2004 year (probably will sell for $6.50) and I’m going to use that method for some of the pictures.  I really think it’s cool.  Speaking of calendars, I’m also putting together a KOTM winners calendar.  If your cat won in the past and you want him or her on a calendar, please fill out this form.  I was on the computer late last evening getting the calendar set up for the store to sell, now I just have to make a calendar.  :biglaugh It’s not like I’m putting the cart before the horse.  I’ve got a couple of months….

Oh, something else I’m going to be doing is raffling off one of every item in my store.  Counting the non-existant calendar, that would be twenty two winners!  I’ll be doing that in October, to celebrate my birthday.



Georgie was peeing blood again Thursday morning.  :waaah I called the vet’s office and now Georgie is on the same treatment Annie was.  Elavil once a day.  I have enough pills for two months.  This morning, George was still peeing little spots of bloody urine, but just a little while ago, he was crying and I gave him food, which he liked, then he went into the master bath and peed in the shower.  While it was still colorful, there was a good amount of pee, so it would appear he’s getting a little better. 

Well, I’m gonna go lay in the sun.  I’ve not been out for over a week and I want to stay tan for the Disney trip, in case I wear shorts.  I didn’t lose any weight this week, but I’m attributing that to the salted popcorn I had at the movie (Free Range) Thursday afternoon.  Brian told me this morning “guys are gonna start looking at you again.”  I laughed.  Yeah, right.  I’m fifty years old, they don’t need to be looking at me. 

Prayers to those in the path of Isabel.  Stay safe!

Well, I’m off.

      Thursday, September 18, 2003

02:42 PM - 09/18/2003

The topic: Horrible, horrible day

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.

      Friday, September 26, 2003

12:33 PM - 09/26/2003

The topic: No news is good news, right?

Friday, September 26, 2003  No news is good news, I guess.  It’s been pretty quiet around here, a few things, but nothing major.

We haven’t seen OC since Wednesday night.  He hasn’t been here for dinner, so if you could, please send a prayer his way that he’s okay.  This has happened before with him, it’s just we seem to have gotten so much more late night traffic and they just fly down the road.  I know where one of the morons lives, maybe one of these days I’ll post his address here and the world can send him “slow down, asshole” snail mail.  All the residential roads around here are 25mph, not the 50-60 he goes.

I think Little Bit was in heat this week.  RePete and SpoTee were around, RePete doing his loud posturing around Spot.  Now, Little Bit is curled up with KittyMeeze on the bank.  If OC is gone, we WILL do our best to bring both of them in.  Brian has always said “but what would OC do if Meezer wasn’t around?”  I wish OC would have just stayed over on this side of the street.

I pray he’s okay.

We apparantly have a mice nest down by the pool, in the fish tail palm tree.  The cats spend an inordinate amount of time gazing into its fronds.  They can’t get to it because it’s enclosed in fencing material (check the backyard page for pix of the tree), but they’ve been able to nab some mice.  One morning this week I was able to get a live mouse away from Opie and Richie and I took it out front and released it onto the bank where it will have a better chance at living than in our backyard (I don’t mind mice, I think they’re cute, but the cats can kill all the rats and gophers they can). 

Junior was off his food the past couple of days.  I think one problem is Canidae changed the formula of the dry food.  And I believe Junior took it upon himself to do mouse cleanup duty.  Meaning, he ate them, the ones the cats brought to him.  I caught him with one when I was getting the cats in Wednesday night (we got it away from him and Brian disposed of it) and no telling how many more he ate.  But he didn’t finish his breakfast yesterday, wouldn’t even go near it.  I did get him to eat a quarter of a chicken breast, he scoffed that right up, but he wouldn’t touch his dogfood.  He finally ate the canned I put out for him (it’s really important that he eat when he’s supposed to because of his diabetes) and last night, he finished his dinner.  This morning he was quite ready for breakfast and his stools are firming up.  He had borderline diarrhea for a couple of days.  I talked with the cats and tried to get them to understand why they couldn’t give Junior rodents to eat.  I don’t think they got it.

I found that when I buy new pants, I’m wearing a size 10.  Whooda thunk?  I think the sizes have become inflated over the years, along with the butt sizes of the people buying the clothes.  I bet money that if I ever get to the size I was before I got married, I’ll be in a size 4 or 6.  That’s inflated sizes.  When I met Brian I was wearing an 8 or 10.  I think it’s a ploy by the clothing manufacturers.  I’m sure women are more likely to buy a size 12 that fits than a size 16 that fits.  Even though in actuality they’re the same size.  Hey, don’t get me wrong, I love saying “I wear a size 10” but somehow, my little headvoice is screaming “that’s a cheat and you know it!”  I think about fifteen or twenty more pounds, the little sweaters and shirts I have from pre-marriage will fit me nicely.  That would be so very nice.

Three weeks from today, we’ll be on day two of our yearly holiday at Disneyland.  I’m wondering if the rides will affect me differently.  Figure I’ve lost almost a quarter of my total weight. 

I have to cut my hair again and re-perm.  It’s getting long on the top and that makes it heavier and it doesn’t have as much body as it did.  :(

Well, I have to have lunch, then grab a book and lay in the sun.  Time’s running out, one of these days it will be too cool to lay out.  And this is the best time of year, since it’s not so unbearable.

Say a pray that OC is okay.  Thanks.

      Monday, September 29, 2003

02:45 PM - 09/29/2003

The topic: Still no sign of OC

Monday, September 29, 2003  There’s still been no sign of OC.  The last time we saw him was last Wednesday night.  I really don’t have a good feeling about this.  And usually, in the past, when a cat was gone missing for days, it seemed as if at least one of the other ferals was gone sometime during the day, as if they were holding watch over the sick/injured kitty.  That’s not happening this time.

Some of you may be wondering why we never tried to trap OC again.  Well, we kind of did, but he was “trap smart”.  He had been in the trap before and he stayed far away from it.  And we knew he’d be miserable inside.  Leaving him the backyard was not an option, because he wanted out.  And although it’s hard for a cat to leave our yard, it’s not impossible.  He was one cat who really didn’t want to live with humans.  I sincerely doubt we could have ever tamed him down, not like Lonee or Red.  He would have been miserable inside and no doubt he would have just wasted away.

It’s odd, though.  Around the night he went missing, Little Bit was in heat.  She’s no longer in heat.  I know we don’t need more kittens, but I can’t help but wonder at the timing.  If OC is indeed gone, is she carrying his spirit in one of her kittens?  Would this be a way he could live with us happily?

Speaking of Little Bit, she’s sure a tiny cutey.  I do think we’ll be more aggressive about getting them in.  I do know, though, that should we trap her, she’ll be getting fixed.  So, that would mean no kittens.  I’m really ambivalent about the whole thing.

Early, early Saturday morning, I woke up with severe stomach cramping.  I spent about an hour in the bathroom.  I’m thinking I either had food poisoning or a little bout of the flu.  I’m leaning more towards the food poisoning, because I was feeling much better yesterday afternoon and today I’m back to normal.  I don’t remember the flu lasting that short a period of time.  I slept a lot which the cats loved.  Darn Mystie was on me every time I woke up.  When I’d have to get up to pee (I was drinking a lot of water) she wouldn’t move.

Yesterday, I trimmed my hair down, then gave myself another perm.  Oh, my gawd, it looks like I’ve got a small blond poodle on my head!  I know it will relax before the Disney trip, but Lordy, it looks weird right now.  I really want to wash it, but you’re supposed to wait forty-eight hours. Maybe I’ll compromise and wait twenty-four.  Later today.

Brian finally got all of the tile down in the dining room.  And yesterday he did the grouting and he did it the same way he did the family room.  He didn’t put it in the spaces between the individual cracks, but he smeared it all over the tile, smushing it down into the spaces.  Then he wiped up quite a bit of what was smeared on the top, but it was futile.  I told him I’d use the shampooer today to clean it up.  And I started it late this morning, but realized just how much work it was that way.  I remembered the vinegar from before, got out a small scrub brush and tried scrubbing some tiles. This would work, better than it did on the family room floor, because he didn’t use the additive that had been used on the family room grout.  But it would take forever on my hands and knees, scrubbing.  I needed more vinegar anyway, I’d just pop down to the local grocery store for more and while I was down there, check for a mop that maybe had a hard bristle brush. 

I grabbed my license and ATM card, keys and off I went.  No fashion plate, I’ve got work to do.  I’m in baggy sweats (the only kind I’ve got since I lost all that weight) and an old tank top.  I’ve got on worn, dirty sneakers.  Perfect for scrubbing floors.  I thought that maybe I’d like to try a different flavor of soda and look for the soda aisle.  Since I rarely get soda at the grocery store, I didn’t know where it was and I started at the far left of the store.  I look down an aisle and there’s the Heartless Bastard in a deep, deep conversation with a familiar woman.  It’s my sister-in-law who hasn’t spoken to me in years because of this diary!  I can just imagine the conversation.  I’m sure my name came up at least once or twice.  wink  I backed that cart up as quickly as I could, found the vinegar, found a mop that had a hard bristley attachment and got the hell out of there.  I was out of that store in under ten minutes.

Who would have thought I’d see the president and vice-president of the anti-dianne fan club in one place?  :biglaugh

Anyway, I got home, the floor is almost done and it’s looking real good.

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lisaviolet is sixty something, married with no kids, takes care of lots of cats, likes taking photographs, loves Southern California weather and spends altogether too much time avoiding her responsibilities.

In her spare time, she makes pretty things to sell in her store.

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