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      Saturday, January 02, 2016

10:37 AM - 01/02/2016

The topic: Hey, it’s a new year!

I sure hope this one is better than last.

It's been pretty cold here and delicate flower that I am, I've been spending a lot of time under a blanket on the sofa. Brian says to turn up the heat, but that cost money. So, my excuse for doing nothing is financial.

Well, I did get my Christmas cards finished and mailed out on the 21st of December. But no one got their's until the following week. Even the ones that just went up to the Los Angeles area. Go figure. And they all had additional postage on them.

We were planning on hitting the theaters for Christmas, but I had another migraine on Christmas eve and spent the day in bed. I didn't know how my body would react to loud and flashy, so we stayed home. Brian visited with his mom for a while. She said when he was leaving that Christmas was just weird this year. Yeah, it's been weird for me for a while. I got a couple of cards from friends, that was nice. And one present via email. Last Monday we took wrapped presents over to the vet's office for all of the workers. No cookies this year, I just wasn't up to making them. I'm probably done with Christmas baking. My back just can't handle it.

The cats are doing well, Miss Elizabeth still gets around. I'm really surprised she made it to the new year. In the past few weeks she's quit going out to the garage to potty a lot of the time, she likes my bathroom. That's okay, the floor doesn't suck now.  That vinyl was a huge improvement.

Business was scary slow in December. A total of ten orders and five of those came in the last week. We would have been okay, except for the property taxes that were due on the 10th. I will be so glad when we finally get to the point where there's always money in the bank and we don't have to scramble to pay the bills.

I'm looking forward to the coming week, it's supposed to be raining every day. I think we'll finally make it up to Disneyland. Get some use out of our passes. This will most likely be our last year having them. If we lived closer, it wouldn't even be a question, but Brian's so busy now, it's hard to find the time to get up there and the four hours total drive time wears us both out. And I know my energy level has been pretty low for a while now. We do better when we walk, but damn, it's cold out there. *lol*

That's about it for now, I'm hoping to be better about making entries, but things are just so boring anymore.

Boring is good.

      Monday, January 04, 2016

09:55 AM - 01/04/2016

The topic: Work. Meh.

Yay, first of the year. When our prices increase and I have to change stuff for the website. And figure out how much money to send to the State Board of Equalization for taxes we collected on sales made in California during the year 2015.

Oh, yeah, and there's the little thing of bank statements that need to be reconciled. This is what happens when I leave the office to save money by turning off the computer and peripherals.


      Wednesday, January 06, 2016

06:58 AM - 01/06/2016

The topic: The weather

Rain. Rain, rain, rain and more rain. Water over the sidewalk in front, ankle deep. Water going into the garage from the entryway. Water under the garage door, under my storage cabinets and in front of the litterboxes. Water. Rain. We need it. We need it badly.

For the whole of last year, according to my weather station, we had 6.85 inches of rain. For the year. Twelve months. Six point eight five inches of rain. So far this month (7:03am 1/6/2016) we've had 1.93 inches. We had 1.69 inches yesterday alone. The next storm, coming in this afternoon, is supposed to be stronger than the one yesterday. El Nino is finally here. After today's storm, there are two more this week. Then it starts over again next week.

Rain! Rain! Wonderful, wonderful rain!

Of course, this doesn't really do much for the incredible drought we've been having. We would need years of this type of rain to refill the reservoirs. The water table is low. The earth is parched, deeply parched.

There is a lake here, Lake Cuyamaca. It's up in the Laguna mountains. There is a Shriner's camp up there and when we moved to San Diego back in 1971 and became established, my father joined the local Shriners club, my parents rented a cabin there. They'd visit year round. I'd drive up in my little black '66 Mustang convertible. Lake Cuyamaca was out to the road. It covered a lot of area. When Brian and I used to go for drives, it amazed me at how much the lake had shrunk. I've got photos on my hard drive somewhere, but it was just something that I never thought about until I saw it. I remember being snowed in at the cabin on one occasion, the snow higher than the cars in the driveway. The last few winters, inches of snow were reason for celebration. This week, they're talking about two feet in the local mountains. Snow is good.

Brian is outside right now, cleaning out the pool and running one of the streambeds. This will help lower the water level, since the streambeds leak. Yesterday, the level was pretty close to the top. The weather forecast we watched last night mentioned that El Cajon could get up to six inches more rain this week. Yeah, the pool won't hold that much more. And the problem with the water into the garage is that the drain from the driveway to the backyard is cracked or broken or something like that, whatever it is, it doesn't adequately drain the water. Brian will be working on that this morning, hopefully getting it taken care of before the next storm hits.

Rain. I'm loving it. The trees are loving it. The grass is loving it. The gophers probably aren't. Too bad.




07:18 AM - 01/06/2016

The topic: I’m sure you all know about Charlie

Charlie Ahole, the asshole cat, right? The little bugger that tries to make the other cats flinch and run and when they do, he chases, laughing his wicked little bully boy laugh the entire time. Then when he's called on it, he jumps up on my work table, gives a little meow as if to say "what? I didn't do anything!" and purrs.

Last week, Sagwa (another cat with issues, he's the kitty who sent Mario to the vet after a fight when Mario was new here) decided he was going to stalk Charlie. And stalk, he did. For hours. More than once I admonished him, chasing him away from Charlie's path and telling him to knock it off. Picking him up and putting him outside. But he didn't stop. This would come to no good end.

There was a fight in the bedroom. Brian stopped it, pushing me out of the way (he had on boots, I had on heavy socks). He stopped it by putting a boot between the two of them and breaking it up. Charlie ran into the family room, up onto my work table. I told him this wasn't his fault and checked him over for damage. There was a little blood on him, I think his tongue got scratched, it seems a little bloody, but nothing major. Sagwa was chased into a different room and I found him and looked him over. He was limping a little.

Monday, he was limping a lot. He would put no weight on his front leg at all, he sat there holding it up in the air. Damn it. Abscess. I knew it. Brian asked if we should take him to the vet's office. I told him not just yet, let's see what I can do first. I started him on the clindamycin that I'd gotten for Mystie (she didn't take it). I gently felt around on his leg, looking for the scab. The leg was pretty puffy from the elbow to the shoulder. Pus build up from the white blood cells attacking the site of the bite doing what they could to contain the intruder saliva cooties, but had no place to go, so they just backed up under the skin.  I was pretty sure I found it and I pulled it off (easy, there was still fur attached). It was very tender for him and I knew he felt like crap. I lightly squeezed around the area and he let me know that he'd rather I didn't do that. A little growl, a little show of teeth on my hand, but I just grabbed some skin at the back of his neck and held his head away from me. I decided to go the soaking route. Yesterday, I mixed some epsom salts in warm water and soaked a clean wash cloth in the bowl. I wrapped the cloth around his wound. He really didn't like this very much, but I held it there for about five or ten minutes, then let up. Nothing came out (which was why I did it in the first place, I wanted this thing to drain if at all possible). I would do this as needed, until the abscess burst or the swelling went down on its own. Time would tell.  But he slept for quite a while, then got up and hobbled in to the laundry room where he used the litter box, back out onto the sofa and back to sleep. The next time he woke up, he started grooming.

Yesterday evening he was in the office on the copy machine, a fairly hoppy place to get to, a fair amount of climbing for a cat with a sore leg. I dosed him with more meds. He was pretty resistent to this, but it needed to be done.

And this morning? He's not limping at all. Amazing. I'll keep him on the antibiotic for another five days and he should be okay.


09:06 AM - 01/06/2016

The topic: My love affair with glitter

It grows stronger each day.

So, I have clear embossing powder that I bought a while back. I think I got it on eBay. My plan was to make my own colored and glittered embossing powders. The colored powders worked nicely with Jacquard Pearl Ex pigments. I got a bunch of those on Etsy and Amazon. But try as I might, I've never been able to get regular glitter to work with the clear embossing powder. I've watched video after video. I've read tutorials. And nothing I do works. I've tried mixing the pigments and glitter with the embossing powder. The result looks like 14110115. Seriously.

One of the videos I watched mentioned the embossing powder. Hmmm, that didn't sound like what I had. I did a search. Nope, it's not regular embossing powder, it's special. And I did more research. I found a similar powder with pretty good reviews from Ranger. It's called Ranger "Sticky". You use it like regular embossing powder, but after you heat it, you sprinkle your glitter over it. Some videos have the glitter being tamped down, others have it being reheated after glitter application. I ordered some from scrapbook.com (way cheaper than Amazon, orders under twenty dollars have $3.99 shipping, so buying two from them saved me money, plus I didn't have to pay sales tax since they are in Arizona). It should be here today.

This could open up a whole new world of glitter application....


09:28 AM - 01/06/2016

The topic: My Christmas cards

I didn't take as many photos as I should have, but I felt really pressured about the time. Here are a few, with the kits I used. This year, the cards were made with kits I purchased from Dreaming Tree.

Christmas Bendi Cards  and Tis the Season Pop Up Cards.

There are more holiday cards available and I had every intention on making them, but I ran out of time. One set of the popup cards I did cut out and start to assemble and if I'd known that sending them on Monday wouldn't get them delivered by Thursday, I'd probably have finished all of them. Anyway, for those of you who don't follow me on Facebook, here are some of the photos I took.

Clicking on a picture will take you to a bigger photo in my family album; clicking on that picture will open a larger photo. Most of the larger photos are 2000 pixels in width, so you can get a better idea of the detail.

My little work station. This was day one. By day three, there was paper all over the room. The big table was covered as was the coffee table behind me. And there was still paper on the small table. And every night I put it all away, starting over the next day.

The first set of cards I cut out. I assembled these because I was curious how they would look. They looked great, but I never finished the cards. But I have the rest of the year to work on them. Glitter cardstock. You can never have enough glitter. You can see the shimmer overspray on the paper I use to cover my work surface.

All of the cards assembled. The pop up trees were all glittered in some manner. The plain cards were shimmer sprayed, the other cards had glitter card stock as one of the papers.

Close up of the bendi cards. The snow outside the window, the inside of the envelope and presents I cut out from paper I printed using digital files I bought on Etsy. The ornaments on the tree are from beads I melted last summer. Yay! Useful!

Another of the Bendi cards.

Close up. If you check out the larger image, you can see the shimmer of the spray I used on the paper, to make it shine like real snow does.

The sky is an Etsy graphic. The moon came from the internet. I shimmered the snow and moon. The snowman only had cutouts for his eyes and nose, so I cut a couple of small pieces of orange (which I shimmered) for his nose and black for his eyes. I glued these pieces behind the holes. For his hat, I used glitter black cardstock.

Pop dots are your friend. Santa's sleigh is really flying!

Envelopes and cards ready to be addressed. That tape you see is tape I picked up on Amazon. The problem was it was easily pulled up from the paper, without ripping the paper. The envelopes were not secure. I usually use glue, but this year I was going for something more festive. I ended up with a roll of Scotch tape, standing at the mailbox retaping every envelope. The trees pop up when the card is opened. It's really pretty cool.


mrs. crankypants
10:05 AM - 01/06/2016

The topic: Stupid commercials

Jublia. Mario Lopez yells "whoa, toenail fungus" when someone in silver high heels is on the red carpet. How the hell would he know? They aren't open-toed shoes. Does he have x-ray vision and can diagnose through leather/plastic/glitter or whatever the hell those shoes were made of?

Stupid commercial. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

      Wednesday, January 13, 2016

12:37 PM - 01/13/2016
I'm watching Law & Order

The topic: I love these box cards…

They are so much fun to make. And every one I make I like more than the last one I made. Until I see a picture of the last one, then I think "how cool is that? I made that!" Yeah, my head works in mysterious ways, for sure.

So, one of my best forever friends had a birthday a couple of days ago and I made her a box card. I used the party card from the Summer Box Cards kit from SVGCuts.com. I used three stamps, one was Hot of the Press's "Janie's Girlfriends",  Fiskar's Make a Wish and Inkadinkadoo's Happy Occasions.

To make things load more quickly, I've split this entry. Clicking on a picture will take you to a bigger photo in my family album; clicking on that picture will open a larger photo.

The finished card.


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

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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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