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      Friday, December 01, 2006

01:44 PM - 12/01/2006

The topic: Obsolete equipment

Used to be, a camera or camcorder would last for years and years.  I remember how much I liked my first camcorder.  It held a full sized video cassette.  Well, one day it quit working and we took it to a local place to get fixed.  They couldn’t fix it.  No parts available.


So, we got a little camcorder that used digital tape.  A miniDV.  This was back in 2002.  It was a nice little camera and I was happy with it.  Then last year, I got one of the miniDVD camcorders.  A Sony Handycam.  I like it. I use disks that can be recorded on both front and back.  And I record in high quality, which gives me twenty minutes a side.  Twenty minutes short of the high quality on the digital tape camcorder.  They both have their uses.

The only way to get the video off of the tape is to go through the camcorder.  The miniDVD, well, if I finalize the disk, I can run it just about anywhere. Another plus for the DVD.

But I like having choices.

A couple of weeks ago, before the big crash, I decided to download the video from the old digital tapes, dating back to 2002, when we got the camera.  There was a problem, the picture was wacky and I got the message to “use a cleaning tape”.  Cleaning tape? What the hell is a cleaning tape?

I went over to eBay and found one.  I ordered it.  Then the computer crashed.

So, last night, I use the cleaning cassette and the problem was still there.  *sigh*  I don’t know if it was because the tape was old or what, but it’s not transferring right.  And I’m getting the same message as before. 

The internet is a wonderful thing, you know.  When I got that message the first time, a couple of weeks ago, I did some research.  And it seemed that if the cleaning cassette didn’t work, the only other option was to take the machine to a repair shop.  And that it would probably be hundreds of dollars to fix.  Wonderful.  I shared this all with Brian and I pointed out the problem with the tapes. 

I did a search of miniDV tape camcorders.  There aren’t too many.  The manufacturers have gone the way of recording to disk.  I did find one, a Canon Elura 100.I searched for the lowest price and ended up going with B&H Photo, got the kit.  Which comes with an extended four year warranty.  If this camera dies, I can get it fixed or replaced.  Or, like Brian says, in four years there will be a whole new line of camcorders.

I miss my old VHS camcorder.

04:45 PM - 12/01/2006

The topic: I’ve got too much time on my hands

But wait! I'm not done yet!
I've got more to say!

      Monday, December 04, 2006

07:21 AM - 12/04/2006

The topic: Heartburn

Yesterday, we went to WalMart early. There’s a Denny’s right there, so we had breakfast.

Now, Denny’s has those “Slam” breakfasts. Great price, way too much food. I don’t understand why a breakfast with just two eggs and potatoes is a couple of bucks more than a breakfast with eggs, potatoes, two kinds of meat and three pancakes. Sure you can order the Slam and just not eat all the food, but how often does that happen? I ate one sausage, three pieces of bacon, two scrambled eggs, most of the potatoes and half of the pancakes. I had water, coffee and a large glass of orange juice.

Then we went shopping and the only thing we need for Christmas is a card for his mom. Then, we’re done.

Get home, get unloaded, put stuff away, Brian goes outside and starts washing vehicles, I come back to the office and start futzing around with the JVC miniDV camcorder. I actually got out the manual and read that the cleaning cassette is usually needed after thousands of hours of use. I don’t think I’ve put a hundred hours on this thing. So, I got a brand new tape out and started taping. I let it run. Then, I’d view the resulting video. Each time I did this, the playback was a little better. I think it was just stiff or maybe there’s a little dust inside, whatever it was, working it seemed to be what it needed.

Around eleven, I got some of the Christmas Hershey’s Kisses, the white chocolate with peppermint bits in them. I sucked them to nothingness, relishing the minty white chocolate flavor.

And shortly before one yesterday afternoon, the heartburn hit. It hit bad. If it hadn’t been for the facts that my blood pressure was decent and my pulse was in the low 70s/high 60s and there was no pain on my left side, arm or chest, I’d have seriously considered going to the emergency room. It was the worst it’s ever been. Maybe it was more than heartburn, from what little surfing I did yesterday afternoon, there are a few other things that happen like this.

The orange juice, the coffee, the fatty foods, the amount that I ate, all attributed to the attack. And those peppermint candies? Real bad. Peppermint is not good for heartburn. It makes it easier for the stomach crap to make it’s way on up to the esophagus.  And it hurt.  It hurt bad and it hurt for a long time. The scary thing was my temperature dropped.  A heating pad helped the back pain and warmed me up.  I drank lots of water and downed a good number of calcium tablets (my chiro says they’re a natural relaxant and they did help).

I feel fine this morning (I was kind of nervous about eating anything…I didn’t have lunch or dinner yesterday) and I want it to stay that way. Today, I’m going to start a lifestyle change.  I’ll take my Prilosec OTC in the morning, before I eat.  I’ll cut back on the bacon and eggs during the week, go back to cereal every day.  A cooked breakfast on Saturday’s only.  The candy is gone.  Brian is taking it to the shop with him.  Unfortunately, I can’t have it in the house, I can’t control myself.  It’s mindless.  (The Halloween candy bars lasted eight days.)

It certainly can’t hurt.

09:08 AM - 12/04/2006

The topic: Sad news

Piper, of TBIFOC catcams fame, passed away fame, passed away early this morning.

I loved that kitty.  She looked so much like our Rachel and the pictures Lair posted of her never failed to amuse.

Godspeed, Piper.

This has been a tough year.

And hugs for (((((Laurence and Gina))))).

It looks like Lair has taken all cams offline with the exception of Piper’s favorite spot.  A fitting memorial.

11:55 AM - 12/04/2006

The topic: Kitty Movie Monday

Today's movie is one of Phoebe wanting some attention. She's sure a cutie pie.


Check out the one and only original Kitty Movie Monday.

05:15 PM - 12/04/2006

The topic: Superstitious?

I just realized.  I put out eleven bowls in the garage for kitty dinner and take one into the office.

When I was putting the kitty dinner in the dining room, before Lonee had her bad bout of diarrhea (which, wonderfully, has seemed to clear completely up), I’d put ten bowls in the garage, one in the dining room and one in the office.

I’d never put out thirteen.

Isn’t that strange?

05:42 PM - 12/04/2006

The topic: Sinus

When the humidity drops, the dry air really bothers my sinuses.  I get sinus congestion (worse than usual) and I get headaches.

Why don’t the sinus meds get rid of my headaches?  They dry up my sinuses, sure, but the stupid little men banging with their nasty little hammers against the area behind my nose just keep banging away. 

Excedrin helps.  Sinus stuff is a waste of money.

And something else that annoys me.  My nose gets dried up snot in it. It packs in there.  I can’t blow it out.  I need a hammer and chisel to get it out when my allergies kick in (like now).  Brian, on the other hand, gets a drippy nose. 

I think I’d rather have the drippy nose.

      Tuesday, December 05, 2006

07:14 AM - 12/05/2006

The topic: Catcam computer crashed

It won’t boot up. 

Scream. It’s an old computer running Win98SE. It’s got all of my DOS games. 


08:54 AM - 12/05/2006

The topic: It’s TUMMY TUESDAY #20!

click for a bigger pic

Taken on August 12, 2004, here’s another shot of Rachel’s little tummy.  She was just months old.


If you’ve got a Tummy Tuesday blog entry, feel free to post the link in the comment section or trackback to this entry. And if you put a link back to this page, then more kitties will get to show off their tummies!


01:07 PM - 12/05/2006

The topic: Catcam problems

There’s a problem with the catcams going up.  The host knows about it and they are in the process of fixing it.

They’re going to move catcam.us to a different, less occupied server. 

At least it wasn’t my computer.  *grin*

      Wednesday, December 06, 2006

04:54 PM - 12/06/2006

The topic: Woohoo!

The new camcorder is here!  And it looks like it will play the videos without problem that were made in the other camcorder.

I’m pretty sure the video taken with that machine will be okay, it just won’t playback properly.

The new one is so tiny and so keeyute!

      Thursday, December 07, 2006

07:07 AM - 12/07/2006

The topic: I hate this

No KittyMeeze this morning.


He showed up about 8:15, when I was on the phone with my mom.  He was very hungry and very apprehensive, not coming forward to eat, holding back.  I wonder if the full moon brought out the coyotes and he’s been in hiding.

      Friday, December 08, 2006

07:08 AM - 12/08/2006

The topic: An RN came to the house yesterday

We’re in the process of getting the long term health care for both of us.  As we get older the price goes up considerably. 

It’s with New York Life, they’re a pretty stable company. 

In case something happens to one of us, it won’t be so much of a burden to the other.  We won’t have to go into debt to have good help or a good place to recover from whatever it might be that knocks us out.

When we first started talking about it, I was all for it.  Brian was reluctant.  It was on one of our walks when I told him I didn’t think he could take care of me, were something bad to happen.  It upset him that I felt like that, but I was being practical.  His first response was “this is because of the litterboxes; I will do what has to be done”.  No, it wasn’t about the litterboxes (when I took the fall in the backyard and had sciatica so bad my right leg was numb all the way to the toes and I couldn’t walk/sit/lay down without pain, I had to crawl on the floor dragging the bucket to clean the litterboxes because he just wasn’t doing it).  It’s about the fact that if I’m bedridden with diapers, I don’t want to worry about him coming in and changing me.  I don’t want to be in a situation where he gets busy doing something else and I’m laying there in dirty didies.  It’s not a pleasant thing to think about, but the fact is, it could happen.  To either one of us.  Long term health insurance now will provide the necessary help. 

So, we had to fill out some forms a couple of weeks ago.  They did a followup phone call with Brian, but I had a visit from a real live person.  I think it was because I’m fat.  I really do.  She asked to see my driver’s license because of the amount of fraud they get.  Someone healthy signs up in the name of someone unhealthy.  They get the insurance and voila!  The unhealthy person is insured and can be whisked away to a place that charges over $200.00 a day for care.

And she wanted to see that we can take care of ourselves (cooking, cleaning, etc).  I had dinner cooking in the crockpot, I’d run the Roomba and polished the table where we were sitting.  I’d gone over the glass by the fish tank so the house “appeared” tidy when she came in.  She was amazed that we had so many cats, she said there was no smell at all.   With all the doors and windows open and with beef and onions in the crockpot, I think the cat smell was pretty much under control.  *lol*

We should know next week if we were accepted.  I can’t imagine why we wouldn’t be.

      Saturday, December 09, 2006

08:11 AM - 12/09/2006

The topic: Should I slap him?

Brian’s cell is on its last legs.  He mentions needing to get a new one, but he wants a “free” one.  I look online, he’s due for an upgrade.  I find some free cell phones.  I tell him about them last night (I was ready to shut down; but went over to the Cingular site instead).  I pull up the free phones.

He said “I want one like yours”.

“You do?  Are you sure?”

“Yes, your phone fits my holster.” 

That’s a good reason, I guess.

So, I look for my phone. I find it, I can get it online.  But it ain’t free. It’s just as much as mine was.  No matter. Then I ask him about a bluetooth headset.  “I don’t want a headset.”  *sigh*  Here we go again.  “You sure?”  He asks if this phone has a speakerphone option.  I look, I see that it does.  “Yes.”

Then I have him try my headset. I tell him how convenient it is. 

He wants a headset.  Like mine.  Uh, no, not a good idea.  It will be bad enough that we’ve got the same exact phone.  Same headsets could get confusing.  I order him the next step up from mine (there’s also a thirty dollar rebate with this headset).  I place the order. I get the confirmation that the order has been placed.

Then it dawns on him.  His power chargers won’t work with this phone.

“No! No!  I don’t want that phone, my chargers won’t work with it.  We talked about this! I want a phone that my stuff works with.”  I just look at him.

I find the contact phone number for Cingular.  I stand up and start dialing the phone.  He asks me what I’m doing.  I tell him I’m going to see if I can cancel the order.  He said “no, don’t do that”.


I told him that he shouldn’t have yelled at me. He agrees, said he was sorry.

Then I started looking for compatible chargers, both for the wall and for the vehicles.  It appears they are now officially available.  When I got extras for my cell back in October, they were for a different version Samsung phone.  I could have gotten a refund, but that was only $14.95, they wanted it in the original packaging (cellophane…who keeps that?) and I’d have to pay for shipping back, too much trouble.  So, I order two of each. 

Then I pull out the vehicle charger I was given from the Cingular Store when I purchased my cell.  I’ve had no reason to use it at this point.  Guess what?  It’s not for my phone, it’s for the other one.  Since I never opened it, I’m taking it back today.  I want what need for this phone.

Oh, and I don’t know if I’d mentioned this, but I was looking at Brian’s current phone a few weeks ago and it’s chock full of girls’ phone numbers.  What the hell?  Brian is most definitely not a player.  This phone was a replacement for his original phone.  It was a refurb.  Someone never cleaned out the memory.  Lovely, eh?  So, I’ll be cleaning that out (luckily I can do that via the computer) and transferring all the numbers he will want to the SIM card.  That will make it easier for him.

And we’ll be getting the “voice call” service on both of our phones.  I’ll get it to learn how to use it and make it easier to teach him. So, he won’t have to be fumbling on the phone while he’s driving. And that gives me some peace of mind.

He did say “maybe we should get one for Mark”.  Excuse me?  Spend almost two hundred dollars on a cell for your brother?  I don’t think so. Some of the free phones are pretty nice.  And he’s not due for an upgrade just yet.

08:31 AM - 12/09/2006

The topic: Damned tweakers

Brian ordered some fencing from Home Depot a couple of weeks ago.  For the property.  Over $4000.00 worth.  It came in and he went and picked it up last night, loaded it on his trailer.

No room in the driveway to park his truck with the trailer, so he parked it on the street.

Around 3:30 this morning, he’s yelling “get outta there!”  It woke me up, I thought he was yelling at the cats.  Damn.  He’s out of bed, looking out the window.  He runs out of the bedroom, I hear a door in the hallway.  I realize he was yelling at something outside.  I can’t see it, but I take up the cry.  Yelling out the window “get outta there!”   I see him outside.  He’d grabbed the bat and was running up the driveway, with bat in hand and wearing only his tighty whities.  The car had gone, we’d heard it drive down the street. 

Brian thinks it was only one person, he heard no talking.  And he’s not even sure if the guy was looking at the fencing, but very well have been checking out the house kitty-corner from us, with the way cool Christmas decorations.  They’ve got a couple of those blow up things and one is Santa driving a little train and inside the train is a merry-go-round.  That must have cost some toonas and I’m sure it would look nice on just about anyone’s lawn.

I did say to Brian maybe he should say something to them, just in case and he said “why? it will just put them on edge and if someone’s going to take it, they’re going to take it.”

Good point.

Damned tweakers.

      Tuesday, December 12, 2006

06:57 AM - 12/12/2006

The topic: It’s TUMMY TUESDAY #21!

Today’s entry is an oldie of the young Richie Cunningham.  He’s always liked showing off that soft little belly of his.


If you’ve got a Tummy Tuesday blog entry, feel free to post the link in the comment section or trackback to this entry. And if you put a link back to this page, then more kitties will get to show off their tummies!


      Wednesday, December 13, 2006

02:56 PM - 12/13/2006

The topic: I’m sick

The day started out okay, we went for our walk. Came home, I had cereal for breakfast, Brian made potatoes an eggs (sure smelled good).

I made his lunch, he left, I called my mom.  I started feeling pretty tired.   I laid down on the loveseat (too many kittycats on the sofa), read the paper.  Then I thought maybe a shower would help.  It was so nice and warm in there, I sat on the floor of the tub and just let the warm water run over me.

It felt good then, but it didn’t help long term.  I’m sore all over, my stomach is upset and my head hurts.

I’ve slept a couple of hours this afternoon and I’ll be there again before too long.

I must have caught some bug up at Disneyland this weekend.

      Sunday, December 17, 2006

12:29 PM - 12/17/2006

The topic: I see a white cat with a

red stripey tail being naughty and I yell “hey, Mystie, stop that!”

Why does it always seem to be Ron Howard and not Mystie who just got yelled at?  Poor Mystie.

12:49 PM - 12/17/2006

The topic: I’m feeling normal again

Geez, what a strange week last week was.  Healthwise, that is.

Whatever hit me wasn’t textbook.  I had the headache, I had the fever (I couldn’t find my regular thermometer so I used the basal thermometer I used way back when I was trying to get pregnant; it only goes to 100° ), I don’t know how high it really was. My stomach was the worst.  I didn’t feel like I was going to puke or anything like that, it was just upset all of the time and a couple of days all I had to eat was cereal in the morning (I use a bowl that holds a cup) and Saltine crackers.  I wasn’t hungry at all, nothing sounded good and I didn’t want to eat.

Friday, we had chiro appointments so we went to dinner after that, Home Town Buffett.  I had a salad, a small one, a muffin, a little piece of pizza, half a slice of garlic bread and a piece of rotisserie chicken breast, which I peeled the skin off of.  Then I had a little bowl of peach cobbler with soft serve ice cream on top. I only ate half of that.  I can’t believe how full I felt. 

We go to breakfast yesterday morning, I had sweet potato pancakes with scrambled eggs and two slices of bacon.  I doubt I had a full cup of coffee and a couple of bites of eggs, all of the pancakes and all of the bacon.  That was it until about eight thirty last night, when I had two slices of cheese cut in half on Saltines.   I’ve had lots of water to drink.

This morning, my stomach was feeling much better.  So, I had my little bowl of cereal, brushed my teeth, braided my hair, then left for Wal-Mart.  I have a lot of baking to do and I figured I’d see if they had any of the stuff I needed.  They had some, then I went over to the Vons (Safeway) in the same center and got the rest of what I needed.  Plus some other stuff.

I needed more white chocolate chips (melt white chocolate chips in the microwave, add some Rice Krispies and Spanish Redskin peanuts, drop onto a sheet and let firm up; it’s a really rich tasting treat and so easy to make), some peanut butter chips and brown sugar.  I ended up spending $185.00 (well, not really, I used the Club card and the total was under $120.00).  Came home, unpacked, unwound.

Then it was time for lunch so I drove down to Jack in the Box for a chicken fajita pita with salsa.  I really like those.  I thought if I had something decent in my belly, I’d be less inclined to nibble as I bake.

I am glad that I’m feeling better.  The baking must get done.  (I hand this stuff out to the various folks who help keep our lives running smoothly.)

      Monday, December 18, 2006

09:12 AM - 12/18/2006

The topic: Baking

I got the white chocolate Rice Krispies thing done yesterday.

I did two batches of oatmeal raisin cookies and two batches of milk chocolate chip cookies done.

Today, I’ll make peanut butter cookies, snickerdoodles, tollhouse chocolate chip cookies and chocolate macadamia nut with white chocolate chips.

And maybe some more of the Rice Krispies things.

I had one cookie during all of that baking.

Yay me!

09:15 AM - 12/18/2006

The topic: When do you make the call?

Brian went up to the property Saturday morning.  If he stays the night, he calls me when he’s settled after his work is done to let me know he’s okay.  Then he calls me when he starts home.

If he doesn’t stay the night, he calls when he starts home, so I’ll have an idea of when he should get here.

He didn’t call last night.  Around seven, I called his cell phone.  It went straight to voicemail.  For those of you familiar with cellphones, you know this means his cell never got the call.  I tried another time, with no luck.  I actually called a few times with no answer. 

Concerned, I called his brother, wanting to know if he’d spoken to Brian yesterday.  No, but he had left a voicemail asking if it had snowed.  I told him how worried I was.  He said that he and his wife would drive up to the property to see if Brian was around.  About fifteen minutes later, the phone rings.  Mark called the sheriff, who lives next door to our property.  He said the gates to our property had been open earlier, but were closed at 5:30, which would have meant that Brian had left.  One of my worries is that he gets hurt working by himself.  An uncle I never met died when the tractor he’d been on rolled over and killed him.  This man spent his whole life working with tractors.  Gates closed meant Brian was ambulatory.

The trip probably takes somewhere around an hour or so, depending on traffic.  Mark said if I hadn’t heard from Brian by eight to call him back. 

I start thinking maybe he stopped for dinner.  Or maybe he stopped down at the Ranchita store, put on his geezer hat and started conversating.  Get Brian started on a subject that’s close to his heart and it’s hard to stop him. He can be downright gregarious.  He did this last week.  I called him, he said he should be home by eight.  He got home at about a quarter ‘til nine.  Because he stopped at the Ranchita store for coffee.

If I didn’t hear from him by 8:30 (which was a good three hours after the gates had been seen shut), I’d call his brother and we’d start searching for him.

He finally showed up around 8:20.  He didn’t know he’d gotten any calls.  He told me “this phone doesn’t work”.  His brand new phone. It just kept “searching”, even for the time.  I told him to turn it off, then back on.  He did. It worked.  “Gee, I didn’t know that.” (Yeah, you did.  You had just pushed that information to the back of your mind, since it didn’t seem important.)

It seems he had, after all, stopped at the Ranchita store.  And spoke with Jocelyn, the proprietess.  Out of curiousity I asked who else was there.  “Oh, other people came and went, but for the most part” it was just Jocelyn.  Two weeks in a row.  I’m seeing a pattern.

Now, don’t get me wrong, Brian would never cheat on me.  It’s something we discuss (not in terms of us) every once in a while, how it’s just not worth it for all the parties involved.  And besides, Brian is too busy to have an affair.  I know all of this, I know this in my heart.  I married a good man and as he’s told me in the past “I’m not your father”.  My father was a horrible cheat.

But I pointed out that Ranchita is a small town.  And people will start to talk if he keeps this up.  “Oh, his wife never goes up there with him, he’s always alone, poor man, I wouldn’t blame him if he yadda…yadda…yadda….”  Small town gossip. 

(They have no idea why I don’t go up there and in reality, it’s none of their business.  I’ll tell you, dear readers, why I don’t go up there. 

There’s nothing for me to do.  Sure, I can sit in a trailer and read.  Maybe take some pictures.  But Brian would be outside working and I’d most likely be bored to tears. And I’d be worried about the cats.  It’s one thing when we go to Disney for the night, we leave here around noon and we aren’t home terribly late, when we get home, there’s still plenty of time to let the cats run around outside.  And I’m sure if we didn’t have so many cats, I would go up with him occasionally.) 

There was some yelling. There was some cursing.  All from me.  I was relieved that he was okay.  I was upset that I was so upset for no reason. When all it would have taken was the consideration of a phone call.

He looked like he felt pretty bad that I was so frightened when he didn’t call and that he got home so late. Like I stressed over and over “when do I call for help? How do I know when you being here late is because you’re being neighborly or because you’ve been hurt? How do I know?”

I think this won’t happen again. 

Oh, and he said my coffee was lots better than Jocelyn’s.  Good answer.

11:44 AM - 12/18/2006

The topic: Kitty Movie Monday

An oldie of Richie in the sink.  I thought it was so cute how he pushed himself around.

Oh, I learned how to add music, too. 


Kitty Movie Monday.


This movie was made with SwishVideo

      Tuesday, December 19, 2006

08:50 AM - 12/19/2006

The topic: It’s TUMMY TUESDAY #22!

Having totally forgotten that today was Tuesday and also having a little project that had to be done early, Tummy Tuesday completely slipped my mind.  Thank goodness for Lair’s blog, otherwise who knows what would have happened?

Today’s tummy entry is Sammy, taken back in January of 2002 with his best bud, Junior.


If you’ve got a Tummy Tuesday blog entry, feel free to post the link in the comment section or trackback to this entry. And if you put a link back to this page, then more kitties will get to show off their tummies!

04:10 PM - 12/19/2006

The topic: Weird dream

Alright, since I hit menopause, the entries with Aunt Flo (the old bitch) as a subject matter have pretty much left the building.  But….

I woke up from a very strange dream this morning.  It seems I had to “powder my nose” and realized that I was having a period.

I knew this was wrong since I’ve not had one since March 2003 and I went to see the nurse immediately (no doctor, there were other things going on, like I said, weird dream), more concerned than alarmed.

When I woke up and went back over the dream in my mind (I do this sometimes; when I don’t, the dream just goes away) I realized that I’d been wearing a pad (it was what I showed the nurse).

So, yeah, like I wasn’t expecting some sort of flow.  I always wear pads, just in case, you know?


      Thursday, December 21, 2006

08:59 AM - 12/21/2006

The topic: Sad anniversary
Yesterday was the thirteen year anniversary of the loss of little Hollywood.

      Tuesday, December 26, 2006

08:29 AM - 12/26/2006

The topic: It’s TUMMY TUESDAY #23!

Click for a bigger pic

Marco graces us all with his very ample belly, on this last Tummy Tuesday of the year.


If you’ve got a Tummy Tuesday blog entry, feel free to post the link in the comment section or trackback to this entry. And if you put a link back to this page, then more kitties will get to show off their tummies!

tales from the parkside
09:54 AM - 12/26/2006

The topic: Christmas Eve

We spend Christmas Eve at my mom’s.  She cooks dinner, we eat, exchange presents, then we come home.

We were supposed to be there at four in the afternoon.  We showed up at 4:15.  Mom said she thought we’d be there at five.  No, four was the time.

Anyway, my mom wasn’t acting right. She’d sounded fine on the phone, but Sunday night, there was something obviously wrong with her.  Her hands were freezing, she wasn’t doing anything in the kitchen.  The turkey was in the oven, but nothing else was getting prepared.  Her hands were freezing (her place was an oven).  I warmed her hands up with mine and then went into the kitchen to finish dinner.  She didn’t know where anything was.

I did find an empty pack of cigarettes in the trash bag she had hanging from one of the cupboard pulls.  It was right there on top, ashes next to it.  I asked her about it, she denied it was hers.  There have been a few times she’s had the smell of tobacco on her, but she blamed it on a neighbor. 

She had a couple of beers, I had some champagne. Brian had one glass, that was his limit.  The turkey was taken out of the oven to cool down and I started the peas, mashed the potatoes and heated up the gravy.

Mom would walk into a room and just stand there.  “What am I doing?” she’d ask.  And she was walking like it really hurt. 

I was frightened that she’d gotten so bad in such a short period of time.  I thought maybe it was her medications.

When we left, Brian said we’d take the carcass and put it in our dumpster, he didn’t want her bothering with it.  We said our goodbyes.

Brian told me yesterday morning that mom was drunk on her ass.  And thinking back on it, that made more sense.  When I called her, I asked her about it.  She said that she’d maybe had a few beers too many. Oh, and she was smoking again.

All the concern I had for her Christmas Eve just flew out the window. Cigarettes mess with one’s taste buds, so that food doesn’t taste good. They screw with the circulatory system so that blood doesn’t flow like it should.  They also contribute to high blood pressure.  Her doctor recently doubled her dose of meds because they couldn’t get her BP regulated.

She remembered nothing of the night before.

Add to that the drinking (the black out) and you’ve got a recipe for disaster.  It terrifies me that she’ll have too much to drink and burn the place down with a cigarette or take a bad fall and seriously injure herself or die. 

I can’t be her policeman.  I don’t want to be her policeman, but I don’t want her to be in a position where she has to live in a home because she can’t take care of herself.  I told her this this morning on the phone.  She did tell me that she had taken two traquilizers Sunday afternoon because she was “feeling hyper”.  Mom doesn’t like taking these things, because she feels like she’s losing control.  WTF does drinking too much make her feel, then?

Anyway, she said she got rid of the beer she had and was going to try to quit smoking again. She’s got the lozenges, so she can start on them until she gets the patches. 

I was so very proud of her and I don’t want her to hasten the end of her life.  I like having her around.

      Wednesday, December 27, 2006

07:54 PM - 12/27/2006

The topic: Amazing cats

Saturday morning, I was cleaning out litter boxes.  I was in the garage and I heard a noise in the rafters.  I looked over to see Lorelei fall to the cement floor from one of the crossbeams.

She had a rough landing on her left front leg.  She hobbled off into hiding.  I was able to get to her and I felt her leg, mostly to see how she reacted. It wasn’t like Marco’s, just hanging there and while she didn’t appreciate what I was doing, it wasn’t extremely painful to her.

She was able to put some weight on it and as the hours went by, it seemed to be getting better.  Two days later, you’d have no idea she’d hurt herself.

There is talk of boarding up the rafter access, though

07:59 PM - 12/27/2006

The topic: I sewed today

For the first time in over a year, I pulled out the sewing machine and took care of one of the projects on my list.

I had gotten more of those blankets, the kind you see on the catcam chair to use as pillow covers for the big body pillows we’ve gotten at CostCo for the cats to lay on. We’ve got three of them.  I figure these would be easier to clean than the pillows.

I sewed up six of the suckers.  Washed one pillow since the others were being used by kittycats.  We had some real weather today and the majority of the cats stayed in the house, snoozing in various soft and warm places. 

When the pillow was washed and dried, I slipped one of the covers on it and it works nicely. 

I hope the cats like them

08:03 PM - 12/27/2006

The topic: Beds

Earlier this year, when the cold weather was replaced by the warm, I took all of the heated cat beds and had every intention of getting them washed.  I finally did this last week.

I put one in the living room under the coffee table and the other three are in the window in the family room. 

And one by one, the cats checked them out and now, during the day, all three are occupied.  Kitty cats like warm places.

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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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