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      Saturday, December 01, 2007

09:06 PM - 12/01/2007

The topic: I really shouldn’t have laughed

Really, I shouldn’t have. But sometimes, you just can’t keep the bubbles from coming to the surface, you know?

Phoebe has gotten affectionate.  I don’t know when it happened, or why, but it did. She’s decided at night, that she wants to be our best friends. She’s all over both of us. 

Well, the other night, I was stretched out on the sofa, Brian on the loveseat.  Both of us had a fair amount of kitty cats on us, around us, close to us.  Phoebe came over to me, I petted her head, she went to the back of the sofa.  We’re watching television and Brian jumps up from his prone position, yelling and cussing.

I was a little concerned, asked him what was going on. 

“Some black cat just pissed on my head!”

Okay, here come the bubbles.  Stop.  I command them to stop. Stay down, please.  Do NOT come to the surface. It’s very hard.  I get up, start walking around. At this point, I’m not sure exactly which black cat it was.  Kirby and Mickey are on the sofa.  Captain is back in the office. Monica is in the bedroom window.  Joey is in the garage on top of a cat condo.  Little Bit isn’t even a consideration. Ross is in the living room, in a cat bed.  By process of elimination, it’s Phoebe. 

At this point, Brian is in the kitchen, wiping his hair and head off.  I walk by him, heading for the laundry room, looking for black cats.  He says “don’t laugh, it’s not funny”.  Bubbling is getting worse.  I hide my mouth behind my hand.  But my voice….my voice is being weird.  “I’m not laughing.”  “Yes, you are”, he replies.  And as he repeats “it’s not funny”, he starts to laugh.

I bust up.  “I’m sorry, but it really is funny”, I tell him. 

When we went to bed, Phoebe went over to check on him.  He mumbled for her to get away from him.

Then he started petting her. She purred.

09:20 PM - 12/01/2007

The topic: Speaking of Phoebe

Phoebe does not like the wet lawn.  We’ve had rain for the past couple of days.  Yesterday it was heavy at times. Well, Phoebes was in the little plastic “television” cathouse, out by the rosebushes.  A cat can get there by walking on the decorative blocks that are in front of the roses and not have to walk in the grass.  During a respite, I went out to check on the cats who were out there.

Phoebe came out of the television and let me pat her head.  Then she walked into the grass.  She took a few steps and stopped in her tracks.  She picked up one of her back legs and shook it. Put it down.  Did the same with the other.  She didn’t know what to do, her feet felt funny.  She would not walk.  She would not move.  I picked her up and put her back in the television.

Then when I had all the cats in last night and didn’t see her, I went out in search of her. There she was in the television cathouse.  She got out, thinking she was going to head for the back and I wouldn’t get her there.  I smiled at her as she stepped on the lawn. It was still wet.  She wouldn’t move.

Picking her up and bringing her inside was child’s play.

      Tuesday, December 04, 2007

08:35 AM - 12/04/2007

The topic: It’s TUMMY TUESDAY #71!

So, today we have a naughty cat model.  Lorelei is showing us what not to do on screen doors.  She does this on a fairly regular basis, showing the other cats what she means when she says “don’t climb screens”.

click for a larger pic


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!

      Friday, December 07, 2007

09:11 AM - 12/07/2007

The topic: Posting banners

I’m an affiliate of some websites that sell stuff and I rarely do anything to publicize it.  But I think if they send me a banner or whatever that sounds interesting, I’ll post it here.

Oriental Trading Company, Inc.

      Tuesday, December 11, 2007

07:24 AM - 12/11/2007

The topic: From Disneyland

We had a pretty good time.  Missed the cats like crazy.  The castle was beautiful this year, different than previous years.

click for a larger pic

This was during the day.  When the sun went down, it was even more spectacular!  Those are actual lights draping down and over it, “frosting” it.  Very, very nice.

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

09:06 AM - 12/11/2007

The topic: It’s TUMMY TUESDAY #72!


Slow start today, pretty busy with laundry and sleeping in (thanks, Rain Gods!).  Changed the bedding Saturday morning and filled the empty laundry baskets and now have all this weekend’s bedding to clean as well.  Not to mention the clothes we wore while up at Disneyland.


click for a larger pic

Today’s tummy belongs to none other than Richie Cunningham, who shows that even when in the curled up fetal position, it’s still possible to show a little belly.


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!


      Monday, December 17, 2007

10:08 AM - 12/17/2007

The topic: So, I’m in the kitchen

Making up some of the goodies I give out at Christmas (I made probably twenty dozen cookies yesterday, have more to make today).  This morning, I did the melted white chocolate, which I added rice cereal to (like Rice Krispies) and blended in some Spanish peanuts. A real easy recipe, that tastes more fancy than it really is.

Anyway, Brian got home from the dentist and I’m spooning the mixture onto aluminum foil sheets.  He talked about his visit and they’d asked him what he was giving me for Christmas.  And he asked me what I wanted.

Now, I haven’t thought about what I “wanted” for Christmas in years, since we don’t do Christmas.  So, I said the first thing that came to my mind.

“My two front teeth.”

He looks at me, puzzled.

“Your two front teeth?”

To which I reply “yes, my two front teeth.

All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth,
So, I can wish you Merry Christmas”

I start to sing “It’s been so long since I could say
Sister Susy sittin’ on a thistle,
Gosh, oh, gee, how happy I’d be
if I could only whistle!

All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth,
So I could wish you Merry Christmas!”

Now, Brian’s just standing there, a big grin spreading across his face.  I can see he thinks I’m just the most amazing thing for having come up with this little ditty in such a short span of time.  I laugh.  “You’ve never heard that song before?”  Nope, he hadn’t.

But he liked it.  I could tell from his smile.

I’ll have to go through my holiday music collection and see if I have it somewhere.  It’s an adorable little song.

      Tuesday, December 18, 2007

08:03 AM - 12/18/2007

The topic: It’s TUMMY TUESDAY #73!

And today, we have the substantial offering from Marco.

click for a larger pic

One of the gentlest cats in the household.


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!


      Friday, December 21, 2007

11:13 AM - 12/21/2007

The topic: So, we’ve shut down

for the night.

We’re watching television. All the cats are in for the night, Brian’s already fed the outfronts (no sign of Gilly and he wasn’t here in the morning, either).  It was a pretty nice day all around, my back’s feeling better, we went out to dinner (I really wanted a salad) and were just kicking back. 

Yesterday it had been cloudy, a little on the cool side, but early afternoon I’d opened up the house so the cats could go in and out.  And it was great last night, that they all came in so easily.  I didn’t have to chase anyone in.  I like those nights.

So, it’s quiet, we’re watching tv and we hear some noise outside.  It didn’t really sound like a cat trying to get in, but it was at that side of the house. I go into the garage and turn on the outside light and open the door and look out.  Don’t see anything, but I get a impression that something ran back into the yard.

I grab a flashlight and go out.  I check around the pool, up on the bank and what do I see?  I see a red cat.  Not an inside cat, but Gilligan.  Okay, my mind is running a thousand miles an hour.  Do I let him out or try to keep him in?  Obviously, he’d been here all day without a sound and the cats were out.  But KittyMeeze is still out front and I know he’ll be lonely.  I go inside the house and tell Brian I know why Gilly didn’t show up for breakfast or dinner. 

We decide to let him out.  Brian went into the bedroom to put on his boots and I went back outside and unlocked the gate.  Brian came out and stood by the gate (out of Gilly’s sight) and I chased (wrong word, it was more like herded) Gilly to that side of the yard.  And out he went.  Brian said he flashed across the street.  But he came back last night for dinner and he was here again at breakfast.

But I think I should start leaving food out in the backyard, in a place where it won’t get wet, when we leave for overnight trips.  Just in case some cat is out there.

02:48 PM - 12/21/2007

The topic: I’ve said it before

and I’ll say it again.

Once a woman reaches menopause, after having had a period for a majority of her life, she should never, ever, ever again be subjected to a pimple.

Especially big red angry looking pimples on the chin, in a place where if you mess with it too much, it just ends up looking like you fell chin first onto a road paved with gravel. 

Damn it.

      Tuesday, December 25, 2007

07:19 AM - 12/25/2007

The topic: It’s TUMMY TUESDAY #74!

Last week, I finally set up that little photo frame dealie that I got at Woot sometime within the past year or two.  The card I’ve got in it is a 1G card and boy, howdy, does it hold a bunch of pictures, when they’re resized to 480 x 270 or thereabouts.  Well, I’ve been going through photograph files and found this most adorable picture of Ron Howard before he because Little Shit.  What a belly on that baby, eh?

click for a larger pic

I hope you’re all having a wonderful holiday.


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!


      Saturday, December 29, 2007

tales from the parkside
09:22 AM - 12/29/2007

The topic: Christmas Eve, 2007

Well, she wasn’t so out of it this year, but she’s skin and bone (Brian said when we left and he hugged her goodbye, it gave him the willies).  She’s just not eating (“nothing tastes good”).  And her home needs a good cleaning.

I think she might be depressed. I think she just sits on her sofa in front of the television all day long. Earlier this month when I’d gone over, her drapes were all pulled and the place was like a mausoleum.  Not only that, she still smokes, which doesn’t surprise me at all, but she had all of these air fresheners and candles going to make the place smell better.  They really didn’t help at all.

Earlier this year, she let me know she didn’t want to do Christmas dinner.  Just do a small gift exchange and that would be it. Not a problem. But after I told her how good our Thanksgiving dinner was from Sprouts, she said maybe we could do that and she’d pay for it.  Okay, we’ll do that.  And since it has to be heated up, that we’ll come over earlier in the day and Brian can wash her front windows.  She’s been complaining about how dirty they are for months, but the only person she asked if they’d do it, they told her it would be $150.00.  The windows stayed dirty.  Brian said he’d do it while we waited for dinner to heat up.  We went over armed with cleaning supplies.

I ordered the meal on the 20th.  We went to the store about 2:30 on Monday to pick it up and corporate had not passed the information on to the store.  There was no dinner waiting for us.  Fortunately, they had enough to put one together for us. We took it over and I asked where the pots and pans were and this started the thing “I don’t have enough pots and pans for all of that food!”  Everything was a big issue.  I found the stuff I’d need and because it was all pretty dirty (mostly from just sitting in the cupboards and not being used) and started cooking.  One thing I had to do was to wash the utensils I needed because they’d been put away with food on them. 

And I couldn’t see out of the kitchen window, so I got paper towels and cleaner and cleaned it. When I went on the patio, mom comes up to the inside of the window, with a self-satisfied smirk “you can’t clean it, the screen doesn’t come off”.  I just looked at her, and pulled the necessary tabs up on the screen and it popped right out.  I smiled at her.  She said “oh” and went back to her corner of the sofa.  Just staring at the television. And I finished cleaning the window.  I also noticed some old drops of something on the little hallway floor and stuff in the kitchen.  I used paper towels to clean this mess up. The towels came up black.  Her home is in desperate need of a decent cleaning and she can’t clean it.  Okay, I understand the floors, she’s always cleaned floors on her hands and knees and because of her osteoporosis, it’s impossible for her.  But that doesn’t explain the bathroom counter not being wiped down, the spotting on her bathroom mirror.  It doesn’t explain the dishes in the dish drainer, dishes that are supposed to be clean, sitting there with old food caked on them.  All of this is alarming to me because my mom was always took care of her house.

I remember as a kid, when dad would be gone for the day, that mom would throw open all of the doors and windows, put on her favorite music, and spend the day cleaning.  It was cathartic for her and when done, she was very satisfied with her day’s work, relaxing with a beer and a ciggie.  What I was seeing now, wasn’t my mom. 

And she showed some confusion.  Not much, but enough to catch my attention.

By the end of the evening, I’d told her I wanted her to see a doctor and I wanted to be there with her.  And also that I’d be coming over at least once a month to clean her home.  There wasn’t much she could say at that point, just agreed.

So, when I talked to her Wednesday morning, she told me I didn’t have to clean, she’d made arrangements with the person who cleaned one of her neighbor’s homes. 

Now, one of the things that’s finally gotten through to me is that my mom lies to me. If she thinks it will keep me off of her back, she’ll lie to me. About what she’s eating. For example, back in October, after we got back from Disneyland, I took mom with me to CostCo, where she bought a case of Ensure; she tells me how much she likes it, how she’s been drinking two of them a day - when I ask her if she needs more when Brian and I are going, she tells me “oh, I’ve still got some”.  When we went over there Monday, I found a six pack of them and two out of the pack…eight drinks….she wasn’t drinking them like she’d told me. She lies about who’s she’s visiting, who’s calling her, who’s bringing her food, just overall what she’s been doing.  You might remember that on Christmas 2006, it came out that she’d been lying to me ever since she’d been diagnosed with breast cancer back in 1999 about not smoking. She promised she’d quit and always gave me good reports about how well she was doing, when I’d talk to her on the phone. But when we dropped in on her last March, bringing her Sharp’s near beer and muffins, on our way home from CostCo, it was obvious she’d been smoking.  She was “depressed” since the mechanic who usually worked on her old car, wouldn’t smog check her new one. She bought beer and cigarettes (“they’re just the cheap kind!”) when she left. 

But now, when she tells me something, after fifty-four years of believing what she says, I no longer do. I suspect every word out of her mouth, especially when I think she’s trying to not disappoint me.  The past year has been a definite learning experience for me.

Anyway, I tell her I’d like to come over when this woman is there to clean her house.  “Why?”  Oh, just to make sure she does a good job.  “Well, I don’t know when she’ll be here.”  Okay, then call me when she leaves and I’ll come over to check out the job she’s done.  Aha!  I’ve hit a nerve.  The liar’s nerve. She gets defensive. She thinks this is a prelude to her being put in a home, about losing her independence.   She says “I might as well put my head in the oven!”  I think to myself “nah, just go on the way you’re going, it’s slower, but you’ll have the same end”.  Of course, I’d never say such a thing out loud to her.

I think I am able to explain that I’m just concerned about her, that I never in a million years expected my house to be cleaner than hers. And that it’s more than the floor, it’s the house.  We end the conversation. 

A couple of hours later, the phone rings.  It’s mom.  She says “okay, you can clean my house. I just tried to wash the floor and I was down there with a bucket of water and I couldn’t get up.  But you have to let me pay you.”  Fine, if she pays me, I’m sure she’ll feel a little more independent, like she’s doing me a favor.  Twenty bucks.  “But don’t be coming over here everyday!”  Yeah, like I’d clean house everyday just hoping to get rich.  Not me, I’m not a real gung ho housekeeper.

Thursday on our morning conversation, she’s ready to make the doctor’s appointment.  She wants to come over and have me make it because she gets frustrated with punching in numbers according to the menu.  She’ll be here around ten.  Okay with me.  She calls again before nine.  “I’m on my way!”  Okay.

She gets here and I come back to the office to get a pen and paper.  I tell her to just take a seat at the table.  “Which one?”  (She’s standing in the dining room.)

“How many do you see?”

“Just one.”

“Then sit at that one, okay?”

Anyway, I get the appointment made (for January 3rd) and give her all of the information.  I tell her I’ll be picking her up around 7:30 in the morning.  And when she leaves, I start making a list of things I want to discuss with her physician.

Thursday afternoon, someone tells me I should think about talking to her doctor before we go.  I think this is a good idea, so I call. I find out there might be a problem because of the HIPPA laws and the fact that I don’t have Power of Attorney.  I leave the message for a call back.  If there is none, at least I tried.  But I got to thinking about the POA and did a little net research.  I can fill out the form online and print it out and take it to a notary.  And I read about the living will.  My only concern is that my mother will think I’m trying to off her, that I’m after her money. Which I’m not, but unless she has a major change in thinking about her life (and eating habits), POA and the LW are a definite good thing to have.

I bring that up to her yesterday morning and she’s okay with it.  This morning (because of how frail she looked Monday, I’ll be calling her seven days a week, not just during the week; like Brian said if something happened to her on Friday night, she could very well just be laying there over the weekend, in pain or worse), she says “now these papers you want me to sign, is this so you can put me in a home?” banghead

Anyway, I’m hoping to have a resolution with her health by the end of the month. I’m hoping (praying) that her lack of appetite can be cured with medication.  It’s possible that she’s just depressed.  This morning, she mentioned the onset of dementia.  That scares me.  I tell her that’s one of the reasons that we’re going to the doctor, that maybe there’s some physical cause for what’s been going on with her. 

She did sound good this morning. Said she’d had a great night’s sleep. Told me about being invited to a neighbor’s house for New Year’s Eve. That at first, she hadn’t thought about going, but she changed her mind.  I like hearing this, being out around people is good for her.  I just hope she’s not lying.


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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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