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      Thursday, April 05, 2018

08:48 AM - 04/05/2018

The topic: Conversations

Me, walking into the office, shaking an orange soda zip fizz in my water bottle.

Him: I thought you weren't going to have those anymore

Me: -picks up bank statement, shows it to him-

Me: Doing bank reconciliation

Him: You should probably take a Xanax for that

Me: I will

Me: I feel like I need to put a bra on

Him: Well, you are in business mode. You wear a bra in business. At least, you need to now....

Me: Hey! I just got that!


      Monday, April 09, 2018

09:07 AM - 04/09/2018

The topic: I’ve been nagging for a while

Our pool pump is old and NOT energy efficient. I've been on him a while to do something about it. More so since I've had access to our utility company's website. I could see exactly when the pool pump came on and when it went off by the energy use chart.

Earlier this year we went to the "time of use" option for getting charged for what we use and he started running the pool during the night. Then, last month, the flow valve or something, the thing he uses to backwash the filters, broke. It leaked, a lot, when the pump was running. The pool has been off for a month.

Our latest bill is down over a hundred dollars.

Anyway, he bought a new piece so it no longer leaked. The pool got less green (a month of not running kind of does nothing for the algae growth), but it's still bad. So, last week, after all these years, we finally ordered a newer pump. One that isn't as powerful as the other one (which was overkill for the size of our pool) and better at using energy efficiently. Brian found another pool vacuum, and that was ordered. We ordered new filters for the filter. Locally, those were over twenty-five bucks each and there are eight of them. We got a full set online for $140.00.

The pump got here Friday. The vacuum should be here today. The filters were ordered later and should be shipping tomorrow from back east. With any luck, they'll be here by the end of the week.

Next weekend, Brian is going to do something he's been talking about doing for a while now. Redoing the pool pump area. Moving the pump, rebuilding the deck it's on, a lot of work. But it's nice that he's finally getting around to it.

We had a little shouting match a little bit ago, not that we yell much, but my tolerance level for raised voices is lower than it's ever been right now, I've not been feeling well for a week or so and I yelled at him to "QUIT YELLING AT ME!"  when he moved mail in his inbox and doesn't know where he moved it. We all get frustrated, but if you want my help, don't effing yell at me.

So, I guess he had a question and he just emailed it to me (I'm at my workstation in the family room, doing a little gluing). I had to laugh.

Anyway, it will be nice when this is all done.

the yard   

10:07 AM - 04/09/2018

The topic: Love the hot air balloons

I made one last month. I mentioned I found a spot for it, but after finishing it and hanging it, I moved it to an ever better spot!

And I'm gonna make more hot air balloons! Different sizes! And hang them all from the same area!

Okay, here's a picture of the balloon I made last month (I have many more to add, but that's another time, another entry):

The wood frame here is a little over six inches wide. I think it would be fun to make balloons of different sizes and hanging at different lengths. I think six inches will be wide enough to let me do that without them knocking into one another and I think it would be a fun entry into the house.  Since this across from the front door.

The top panels on the balloon above are nine inch pieces. I've measure paper and the largest I can make with 12" x 12" cardstock would have fifteen inch panels. With that many pieces, I'd most likely print out my own paper. Which I did with the balloon above. For long time fans of the lisaviolet website, there's a section that has some graphics that I designed for use as webpage backgrounds and this is where I got the one I used above. When I showed this piece to Brian's brother and said "I designed and printed the paper" his response was "that's PAPER?"

Right now, I'm working on one with two inch panels. My sausage fingers are having a time of it, it was difficult enough to put these Irish working hands into the larger balloon base. I think it's going to be some sort of miracle if I can get this one put together smoothly. I cut out a lot of pieces, just in case.

I think the overall effect when I'm done will be pretty cool.

photos    craftstuff    balloon   

10:56 AM - 04/09/2018

The topic: The past couple of weeks have been action packed

It started with a notice from the cable company, which also provides the service for our FAX line. A landline.

"Oh, hey, guess what? We're going all digital and need to come to your house and screw life as you know it!"

Okay, that's a small exaggeration, but as someone who does not have ANY local friends (by choice), no visitors at all, well, having a stranger in the house doing something that I do not want done (taking away the landline, which works without electricity), it doesn't only upset my apple cart, it also pours gasoline and throws a match on it.

I loathe change that is not of my doing, no matter how small.

So, he'll have to be in the office. Our office. The office that hasn't had a decent cleaning since before the catcam was taken down. A long time. Long. Really long. I need to clean.

Well, the weekend before the appointment was cold so I rescheduled the appointment. Deep cleaning needs open doors and windows. It just does. Cold weather needs the remote control and a blanket. Totally different ends of the spectrum. That Thursday, I started the cleaning. A little at a time. Marking cats create a lot of messes, for sure.

Things were going smoothly until I tripped over a cat bed outside and went down on Saturday. It wasn't really bad, the hurt usually doesn't hit right away and I took advantage of it. I didn't do as good of a cleaning as I'd planned on, but the floors were cleaned and the worst places that had been marked (but not easily accessible for a wash rag and cleaner) were taken care of. Anyway, the guy gets here late the following Tuesday, but finally gets the new line working.

The next day, my leg started to hurt. Ah, yeah, so dependable, this pain.

Last Thursday, I did the bank reconciliation for February. I finished quickly, then decided to pop the Turbo Tax disk into the computer.

That done, I figured I'd go ahead and get the taxes started. Just to see what I'd need to do to get them as low as possible.

The taxes were done by late afternoon. Wow! I was on a roll!

Friday morning, I printed them out. The printer puked back gibberish. Oh, not the whole thirty-six pages. But over half was garbage. Great. Just great. Wonderful. I tried a different printer. Same problem. I rebooted. Same problem. Wasting lots of paper (luckily, I started with the cheap crap we use for ourselves, but the shredder was runnin' hot).

I finally figured maybe it was the PDF software I was using. I've only used it for printing out the craft stuff, never any forms. I downloaded Adobe (free!), print out a copy of the forms and yay! Not gibberish!

And wouldn't you know it? The toner was low and a strip on each sheet of paper printed way too light. So, I pulled the printer out from its nook, removed the toner cartridge, did the back and forth thing with it to redistribute the toner, started the print again.

Damn it. I need to replace the toner. Shaking the cartridge did not work.

Cartridge replaced (I've learned when I get down to my last of anything, order more right then), I print out the tax forms. All I need now is money. They will go out next Tuesday.

So, my digestive system has been a little iffy. We have a love/hate relationship with food. I love to eat and it hates to digest properly at times, loves to punish me for years of bad eating habits. And this weekend was just full of punishment. Ever since I had my gallbladder out, the stomach acid has been a problem. Last month I took omeprazole every morning for two weeks. Life was great! Then I stopped. Because long term use of PPIs can make you stupid. I do not want to be stupid.

But stopping it can also make the situation worse. And guess what happened!  Go ahead! Guess!

Yeah, buddy, it got worse. Majorly worse. And it wasn't just the reflux, there were other things going on. Lots of gas. Maybe because of the fiber supplement Brian had been after me to take? Who knows. Not me.

Anyway, I spent the weekend down. On the sofa with a blanket. For some reason, I peed a lot. Well, I wasn't eating much (afraid) and drinking lots of water, trying to help flush whatever was happening in my internals down the toilet.

Sadly, I missed a nice lunch with the fam yesterday. Brian went without me, that's okay, I was the one in pain, not him. I'm sure if I'd asked him to stay home, he would have.

Today, I'm starting to feel a lot better.

And the taxes are done!


      Tuesday, April 10, 2018

07:58 AM - 04/10/2018

The topic: Headed to the vet this morning

Rachel has had problems for a few months now, but was still able to eat. I could tell her mouth was bothering her, but held off doing anything as long as she was eating (after last year, I really would like to not spend so much time at the vet's office).

Sunday, I noticed she wasn't eating. She tried, but didn't eat. I gave her some watered down baby food and she tried a few laps, then looked sadly at the baby food and turned her head. Damn. I opened a can of people tuna (we buy people tuna for the cats just for such occasions).  She sniffed it, then turned away. Tuna juice wasn't enough to get her to try more than a lick.

I pulled out pieces of tuna and crumbled it in my fingers and set it in front of her. She took a nibble. Then another nibble. She ate tuna. She ate a goodly amount of tuna.

I gave her tuna yesterday morning, I gave her tuna yesterday night (she ate a half of a can in one sitting last night). I had lactated ringers in the microwave, heating, concerned she was dehydrated because she's not drinking. I didn't give her any.

Yesterday morning, I called the vet's office and made an appointment.  We're taking her in at 9:30.

This morning she was doing much better, she jumped up when I went into the office for the first time, rubbing against my hand and talking to me. She seemed well hydrated. Is she drinking?

She ate her fill of tuna, then laid down to sleep.

There has been minimal drooling and no obvious blood, and it's been troubling her long enough that I don't suspect cancer, just bad teeth. We'll find out soon.

She just turned fourteen last week. Her birthday was April 4, 2004. 4/4/4.


rachel    catstuff    bad teeth   

10:16 AM - 04/10/2018

The topic: Back from the vet

Reception put a note on her chart that she's not used to people. So, here's the deal.

It is her mouth. She has such a tartar buildup on one side of her mouth, that her cheek is raw. The vet used a stick to look in her mouth, kept his fingers well away from the teeth. The note on her chart said "watch". He did.

She has at least one loose canine and, as far as he could see, some bad molars.

He said it didn't look like any cancer, but that he'd want to do pre-surgical bloodwork (which I expected). And then they'd put her under, take an x-ray to make sure there was nothing malicious in her mouth, then do the cleaning/tooth removal. I asked "are you going to take her bloodwork now?" He said "we can do it all today".

Yeah, I think maybe that "watch" note on her chart kind of put her to the head of the line and the less time she spends stressed, the better off she'll be. Now, just waiting on him to call with the bloodwork results.

vet    rachel    catstuff    bad teeth   

      Thursday, April 12, 2018

05:58 PM - 04/12/2018

The topic: Rachel’s test results came back

Not cancer, the dreaded stomatitis. We've had a couple of cats with it.

The bad spot where the molar was gone and the cheek was hamburger from the tartar, had a polyp and he took care of that during the surgery.

So, she's good and doing better. Sleeping a lot. But this morning she ate chunks of tuna, not the crumbled up flakes.

I don't doubt she'll start putting on weight soon. A good thing at her age,.

stomatitis    rachel    catstuff    bad teeth   

      Monday, April 16, 2018

11:38 AM - 04/16/2018

The topic: Conversations

Me: on the sofa, did he call my name? I turn down the sound on the television

Me: Did you call me?

Him: Yes, could you please come in here and help me?

Me: You want me to get off of my ass and come back there to help you?

Him: Yes, please.

Me: put my tablet down and walk back into the office

Him: I'm trying to order more boxes and I can't get past this page

Me: I look at the page. It's a big company and they do business with other companies that most likely have more than one shipping address. We do not. I click the button that says "use" next to our address. This does the job. He can now submit the order. Took all of ten seconds to "fix" this. I start to walk away.

Him: starts laughing, having just realized how easy the fix was.

Me: smiling - I'm a goddess


      Thursday, April 26, 2018

10:09 AM - 04/26/2018

The topic: A quick update

Okay, updates.

Rocky's toe isn't getting any better and it's interfering with his walking. It's close to golf ball size now. I called the vet's office last Friday to make an appointment for the removal of that toe. That happens tomorrow, it was the soonest appointment he had. And he's back to hating his meds.

Rachel is doing a lot better after her dental. It's taken a few weeks, but she's back to eating and wanting to be loved in the morning.

The weather has been gorgeous mid-day, but cold in the morning. Sadly, when it's cold, I put the blanket over me and it's "say, goodnight, Dianne". Yeah, I fall asleep. Add to that the fact that my immune system is pretty busy fighting off the seasonal pollen, I haven't been very active. I have no idea what I've been doing and from the progress I've made, it looks like I've been doing a whole lot of nothing.

I have been cooking dinner again, which is nice. I really backed off after Brian's mom died. But I find myself thinking about what to make for dinner the next day, do I have the ingredients I need? I'm glad to be back in the kitchen. Tired of fast food.

I'm doing a fairly good job of keeping up with paperwork. I have seven invoices to sent out, that shouldn't take all that long. Business has been pretty slow, not sure if it's because people paid taxes or vacations or crappy weather. But it's starting to pick up. The money situation got kind of iffy with the cost of Rachel's dental, we were cutting it pretty close. Luckily, there was still money from the sale of his Bronco, so that got us past the roughest patch. The house payment and taxes got paid on time.

Brian finished his radiation therapy on the 17th and it's great to be able to schedule things again. Like dinner. We won't know if it took for a couple of months, when he starts getting his PSA retested. From what I understand, it will spike up, then start dropping.

I've been taking pictures of the projects I've been doing, I really need to get those posted. Like the Christmas tree. I'll probably start on another balloon soon. Man, I love doing those....so many ideas...


vet    rocky    rachel    prostate cancer    cryptococcus    craftstuff    catstuff    brian    balloon   

      Friday, April 27, 2018

04:41 PM - 04/27/2018

The topic: Rocky is home

We pulled all of the food up last night, so he was pretty hungry this morning. He wasn't the only one, but they had to wait.

Took him in a little after nine and the waiting started. As far as I knew, the surgery would start at two in the afternoon.

At 3:30, I picked up my cell phone to see how he did and it vibrated. I answered it, it was Rocky's vet. Rocky did well.

He described what he'd done, cutting beyond the ruined part of the toe and getting as much of the fungus as he could off. He also soaked the paw in Betadine for ten-fifteen minutes, then flushed it thoroughly with saline. He told me that the lump on Rocky's back was definitely smaller and he wasn't sure he should do the amputation, but he decided it would be the best thing in the long run. We take him in on Wednesday to have his bandages changed and on the following week, he can get his stitches out. He said eventually we won't be able to tell anything was done. He said we could pick up Rocky at four.

This was good news because Brian was really upset over the entire thing. He felt so guilty that Rocky's paw had gotten so bad.

Still having money from the sale of his Bronco, Brian paid cash. The vet only charged half of what he normally would for this surgery. The anesthesia was expensive, but it was isoflurane, which has a quicker recovery time. And someone sent money to our vet account yesterday, which was really appreciated.

Once out of the carrier, Rocky started running around the house, he wanted out, Brian opened the door and Rocket ran outside and under the tractor. A minute later he was in back inside. I saw him pulling at the bandage on his front leg, so I took that off of him. Last I saw, he was in the bottom basket, drinking water from the little bowl.

When he was running, it was really nice to see him not kicking that paw. It's bandaged, but that big lump is gone.

When we were paying the bill, and waiting for them to bring him out to us (he was eating) the receptionist said when the doctor was looking over what he was doing today, he said "I can't do that paw, this cat has crypto". She told him we said that he said this may need to be done. I guess when he saw it, he could understand why we brought him in.

Pain meds were sent home with him and I'm glad he'll be okay.

vet    rocky    cryptococcus    catstuff   

      Saturday, April 28, 2018

06:58 AM - 04/28/2018

The topic: A new glue?

Last month, someone asked on a forum about glue. Of course, I shared my love of Beacon 3-in-1.

I like it because, unlike white glue, it doesn't warp the paper, it doesn't dry immediately, meaning I have a little time to adjust what I'm gluing, and I can make finger boogers with it. Actually, that last is more of an annoyance when I'm really busy.

Anyway, more than a few people responded that they liked glitter glue. Glitter glue? Like Stickles? Or the Elmer's stuff with glitter in it? How would that work?

So, I did some research.

There really is a glue that's called glitter glue. I ordered some last night. It should be here tomorrow. I like that it comes with a metal tip. I've tried putting my Beacon in a bottle with a metal tip, the same kind I use for my white glue, but it doesn't work well. Maybe this will.

I have paper cut out for three smaller balloons (keeping busy yesterday, waiting for word on Rocky) and I'm going to wait until my order arrives tomorrow before putting them together.

I'm looking forward to it.


12:53 PM - 04/28/2018

The topic: Rocky update

So, as I sit here doing laundry (bedding, Sammy was finally off of the bed and I yelled for Brian to help me, bed stripped, clean mattress pad, sheets and bedspread on) and cutting out varying sizes of balloons, I figure I should give a Sparkle Butt update (rockets have flames shooting out of their backside, thus "Sparkle Butt").

When we got home, Brian opened the carrier and Rocky ran out. He ran over to the sliding door and Brian let him out. He headed for the tractor, I saw him run under it. Within minutes, he was back in the house.

I was definitely anxious last night. He had a hard time settling down and his breathing was a little more labored than normal. He ate a goodly amount of tuna, over a half of a can. He drank water. I kept waiting for him to settle down, but it just didn't happen. I'd check on him with a flashlight in hand and he always had his head up, not down, eyes wide open, not shut. And there was that breathing. I'd get up every half hour or so and check on him. Finally, around 1:30 this morning, his breathing was much better. The anesthesia he had was one that leaves the system quickly, so I'm curious if it was his pain meds. I'm reluctant to try those at this point. The breathing timeline is right for the buprenex to be out of his system. But doing a search on side effects in cats, his breathing should be slower, not faster. It's maybe just from the pain. I just gave him his first dose (yeah, it's late) of pain meds, I'll keep a close eye on him to see how it effects him without all that other stuff going on.

I've been trying to get some decent photos of him, even took a little video of him scratching at the sisal on the cat tree he was on. And then he lost his footing and slipped down between the cat trees to the floor and he sat there crying at me. I couldn't get the camera out of my hand fast enough, I reached down and held him and he seemed okay. He wanted down, I set him on the floor and he went back up onto a cat condo, then back over to his comfort zone. Whew.

He is in pretty good spirits for all that he's been through this past couple of months.

This is what the granuloma looked like on the twentieth. Just a week ago yesterday. If you go to my March 21 entry, comparing photos, this sucker got a lot bigger in just a month.

These pictures were all taken today. Last night, he tried picking at the bandages, but I think they must have a nasty taste, because he really hasn't messed with them too much. He did chew a little hole in the tip and was pulling at the gauze underneath, but I trimmed that off the few times he got it out. It looks like maybe, hopefully, he gave up.

You can kind of see where he's pulled at the tip of the bandage here.

A large area of his leg is bandaged.

When he sits, this is how he sits. With that leg up in the air.

Fast asleep at last

It's been about an hour now since I gave him the buprenex and his breathing is normal and he looks pretty relaxed. That will help me relax, for sure.


rocky    cryptococcus    catstuff   

05:29 PM - 04/28/2018

The topic: Got paper cut today!

Yesterday I got enough paper cut to make three little balloons. Today, I got enough cut for three larger balloons. The only thing I didn't cut were the banners and I have to think about what I'm going to do there. I've seen old style hot air balloons with a netting on them and I think that looks pretty cool. Of course, I couldn't find anything ready made, so that means some YouTube research. No hurry.

On the last set I cut, I realized that I only had one pad of this paper and if I screwed up, it was over. Since this is a bigger file, I could only cut two pieces per sheet of cardstock. And I needed four sheets of cardstock, two each of different patterns. First sheet cut great. The second one? On the fourth panel, the cardstock came off of the mat and that was it. I stopped the cut job and found some other cardstock to use. I will use the stuff I cut, but I'll have to change the plan on the other files.

Next week I'll probably start assembly. These are gonna be so cool!

craftstuff    balloon   

mrs. crankypants
05:39 PM - 04/28/2018

The topic: What the hell?

I'm sitting here, cutting away and the mail shows up.

There was a package for Brian so the mailman just left everything in the entryway. I picked the stuff up and started looking through it.

Mail from the bank. Huh. I open it up. Puzzled, I kept looking at it. I'm seeing that we got some sort of advance on April 16. Almost $4400.00.


Back in January, we used one of the bank cards to pay for the liability insurance and I've been paying that each month, but we haven't touched this account for the year or so that we've had it. I know Brian didn't pull this out. But nothing shows what it was for. Just that we owed it. I called the bank.

Well, of course I'm not on the account and they had to speak to Brian. He wasn't home, he was off pricing out new wood for the pool filter/pump redo. She set up a conference call with the both of us and got the okay from Brian to talk to me, all three of us stayed on the line while she checked into it. Turns out it was a bank error, the account it should have come out of was one digit different. And she had a check number. My question is how did it get off one digit if they've got the check? Isn't that taken off electronically, with their special ink?

Anyway, she said it would take about a week to get it resolved and that we won't be charged any fees or penalties.

I sure as hell hope not.

And Brian is going to tell the bank, again, that I can speak to them on behalf of him. Like he's done at least three times in the past.

      Sunday, April 29, 2018

12:59 PM - 04/29/2018

The topic: Ideas, ideas, ideas

So, one of the card stacks I pulled paper from was from Die Cuts With a View's Recollections series. "Surf's Up".  It's no longer available (I've had a lot of this stuff for a long time). The paper I used for the balloon part has little fishes on it. A repeating pattern of little fishes. Different colors. I grabbed a matching light blue for the basket.

And ideas come to me. To hide the seams of the balloon (I've used braided cord in the other ones), I'm thinking of using ribbon with little sea shells glued to it.

For the basket, emboss the bottom with a grass folder and lightly go over that with light green ink, then maybe hit it with a Wink of Stella glitter brush.

This is gonna be fun.

And I'll hang it in my bathroom, which is light blue and sea foam green. And has fishes swimming at the top of the walls. And along the botttom of the mirror.

But for now, laundry.

craftstuff    balloon   

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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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