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      Saturday, May 01, 2021


otherstuff
07:54 AM - 05/01/2021

The topic: Over a month!
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Over a month since I've made an entry. Wow.

Time flies when you're having fun. Or just don't have the energy to sit at a computer and do something besides watch craft videos and paperwork.

Things have happened. Nothing major just little piddly stuff. Well, Rory is having some health issues, but I'll do another post about that this weekend.

I still need to do the taxes, but I don't want to. I'll put that off like everything else in my life.

 

      Monday, May 03, 2021


catstuff
09:04 AM - 05/03/2021

The topic: About Rory
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Back on Monday, April 19, we noticed that Rory was having some sort of litterbox issue. Since she's getting older and has been losing weight, I made an appointment for a check up. Including a complete blood panel and thyroid check.

The appointment was that Thursday (the 22nd). The bloodwork wouldn't be done until the following day, it had to be sent out and they were unable to get any urine for testing. I had to bring her back in on Friday morning.

So, they got the urine, the test were run. Not as bad as they could have been but they weren't all that good. She has mid-stage kidney disease and her thyroid isn't doing its job. The vet prescribed daily subQ fluids (100cc) for the kidney problem and methamazole for the thyroid. We're okay with the fluids, I replenished the stock on the 22nd, and I still had the methamazole left over from her mom (Lorelei).  When the vet called to tell me the results, she also said she wanted to see Rory in a week. Rory had her followup checkup last Friday.

Results were a little worse. So, Rory is also getting a phosphorus binder, Epatikin. The vet ordered it for me from their pharmacy, but it would be shipped more quickly from Amazon (it was here on Sunday, better than 4-8 days from the pharmacy) and there was also free shipping. All in all about twelve dollars less.

She hates the methamazole. She takes the fluids nicely, though. She lays there and just purrs. I was concerned about the Epatikin, but adding it to people tuna seemed to be something she liked.

Her fur has that spikey look that cats who aren't feeling well have. Her appetite has been off and she does seem to be eating a little more than she had been.

She's supposed to go back for another recheck next week. I hope her values have improved. She's a pretty nice little cat.

thyroid    rory    kidney disease    catstuff   


geekstuff
09:19 AM - 05/03/2021

The topic: Other stuff
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Brian finally had the time to set up the new television on Saturday, April 17. More than a month since it had been delivered.

We thought it would be an easy install.

It wasn't.

The mount we have is from our first flat screen television that we got in June 2008. In the years since then, televisions have gotten much lighter. Televisions come and go, but we've kept that mount. It is a nice one, you can move the television, pull it out from the wall, which in our situation is the back side of the entertainment center. We bought it at CostCo for like a hundred bucks. It's heavy (heavier than the new television).

 Before it was set up, I did my due diligence to make sure we had the right screws for mounting the television. I was a little concerned about the old mount, but Brian pointed out that there were a lot of pre-drilled holes and that it would work.

Old television removed, Brian took the mounting plate that went on that television and put it on the new television. No problem. Yet. He attached it to the mount in the entertainment center. It was three inches too high. The mount wasn't in the center of the television, but on the lower half. This wasn't going to work.

He spent a couple of hours trying to get the mount to work without having to actually unscrew the entire mount and then drill more holes in the entertainment center. He took the mount apart and what ideally should have worked (in a perfect world), didn't.

The mount was re-assembled and he had to move the mount. But once that was done, it worked nicely.

It's a TCL Roku television. I spent the next two days figuring out how to set up the components, you know, the DVD players, the cable connection and the Amazon Fire Cube (that I bought on sale with money I made from taking surveys). Set the tv up so when it's turned on it goes directly to cable (this is for Brian). I really wanted him to learn how to use the remote to access the streaming services we get and having a television with the built in Roku makes it tons easier. ("See that little house outline on the remote? Just push that and you'll see the menu for the streaming services! Easy peasy.")

I'm really happy with this system now that it's set up. And I think I'll like not being the one that has to find Marvel movies on the Disney+ service. Now he can do it. The only immediate problem I could see was at night, you can't see the keys on the Roku. I found some little keychain flashlights that fit nicely in the Roku tag at the bottom of the remote. I put one on both of the remotes and they help a lot.

roku    new tv    geekstuff   


craftstuff
09:56 AM - 05/03/2021

The topic: A couple of items off of my to do list
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Since I found dies and stamps, I've accumulated a few. Well, more than a few, I've accumulated a lot. Since I found Lawn Fawn, my collection has gotten pretty big.

The problem is organizing them. I'm still working on this. The ongoing, slow organization is using an ancient inkjet printer (I got it to use for our Disneyland trips, actually took it with us when we went) and an Epson scanner. The plan is to copy every stamp and die I have and add the pages to binders, so I can flip through those instead of digging through storage containers. There may be multiple pages for individual stamps or dies. Say, holidays, pets, transportation, birthdays, stuff like that. A page for each category the stamp or die can be used for. Each stamp/die will have a color button on it that corresponds with the color button on the storage container. The pages will also have the same color button so I know where to look for that particular stamp or die.

Lots of work and very time consuming. I hope I'm done by the end of the year because it's really super boring to do.

The most recent organization, the one I took off of my to do list, is with the Lawn Fawn products. I have colored index cards. Stamps, stencils and dies each get their own color card. Dies that work with stamps get their own color card. On the card I add the other items that this will work with. Here's an example (link to a Lawn Fawn product page). Each Lawn Fawn product is numbered and that's how I have them ordered. And I found out I have more duplicates that I'd like to admit. Hopefully, this will take care of that from happening in the future.


Remember this?

And that's one thing off of my list.

The other was reorganizing the storage container that has my fun supplies (glitter! embossing powder! ephemera! paint! markers! pens! pencils! adhesives! etc, etc, etc....) to work with. That took all weekend, just in the mornings because it was cooler, but even though I'll still need to look for stuff, I'll have a good idea WHERE to look.

Accomplishing things is a good feeling.

organization    craftstuff   

      Wednesday, May 05, 2021


catstuff
08:37 AM - 05/05/2021

The topic: Gophers
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The gopher problem has gotten pretty bad here at the old homestead. The backyard is so ridden with gopher tunnels, it's like walking on a wet sponge. Smooshy. And it's even worse when it's rained or the lawn has been watered.

The cats are pretty much, well, useless. They only have the time when we're not in bed to hunt, because we still close up the house at night because of the opossum problem last summer. We do not want a recurrence of that. Not ever. No possum babies in the garage or house. Not doing it again.

I've watched the cats watch the gopher holes. I've watched the cats pounce on the holes. I've watched the cats shove their legs into the holes as deep as they could, trying to catch that gopher.

I've watched many misses.

Every once in a while, I will see one of the cats, usually Ike, with a live gopher. Which results in some pretty excited humans, shouting at one another to "close the doors!" to the house, as Ike trots through the yard with the squirming rodent in his mouth.

Ike does not kill the gopher. Oh, no, not just yet. We have a functioning toy here. He's smart. He carries the gopher to a place in the yard where there are no holes for escape. And he drops the gopher, smacking it down, each time it rears up at him. Finally, the gopher dies. One of the other cats does cleanup, I haven't seen Ike eating them very often. But we have plenty left, if the daily, fresh mounds are any indication.

We also have them in the front yard. I've actually watched them poking their heads up and looking around. When I see this, I go outside and shove pinecones down the hole where I saw the head. The front yard isn't green or anything, just lots of dirt with mulch and a few weeds (the bunnies like to nom on the weeds). Sometimes we'll get ambitious and pull the larger ones, but we don't use poisons or traps. Heck, we have patches of clover in our back yard especially for the bees. Brian told me last weekend, he put bread down a gopher hole out front after he saw the head pop up. Bread. He's feeding the darned things! I said "no bread. Pine cones".

Anyway, last month we had a discussion about the huge amount of holes in the backyard. And Brian suggested leaving the cat door in the laundry room unlocked at night. So, the cats could hunt during the night. I guess maybe it helps a little bit, but we haven't seen much progress in the lessening of the holes.

This morning, I see this.


Blood. Huh.


One down, a gazillion to go. Guess the head isn't all that tasty. (If you want to see them full sized, click on the photo to go to the photo album.)

photos    gopher    catstuff   

      Saturday, May 22, 2021


catstuff
08:07 AM - 05/22/2021

The topic: We said goodbye to Rory yesterday
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After her original appointment last month and the followup appointment where she'd lost over three pounds the next week, I thought maybe it was because the metronidazole was old (it was from Lorelei last year) and ordered a new prescription. I'd been giving that to her twice a day as well as the fluids every day.

But her fur was spiky (those who have had cats with health issues know the look) and it never looked normal. She showed less and less interest in food. She smelled off. It's been my experience that cats with kidney problems smell like fresh baked bread. She never smelled like that.

And she cried. She'd climb on my lap or on my desk and lay there and just cry. I'd pet her and hold her and she'd settle down, but she was obviously very uncomfortable. To be honest, it reminded me of Potter on his last day. (I don't even want to think about that, it was so awful.)

Concerned about her this past weekend, I called on Monday and made an appointment for yesterday.

Yesterday, she barely ate anything. Some deli beef. None of the other goodies I'd place before her (you know when you have a sick pet by all of the different kinds of food in the fridge). I opened a fresh can of tuna and she lapped the juice. Didn't eat any fish. I took a little bit out and split it up and set it next to her face. When I looked out a few minutes later, she'd turned her back on it. I mean, she actually turned around. No interest at all. And later, a length of drool was hanging from the side of her mouth. Kidney disease can cause mouth ulcers. And I realized that's probably what's happening at this point. Her kidneys are shutting down.

I was taken into an examining room. Brian waited outside (one masked person at a time in the room). She'd lost more weight. The vet examined her and said that she was very dehydrated. She said more tests could be run, but she didn't really hold out much hope for improvement at this point. So, she advised saying goodbye.

I called Brian in from the car (because euthanasia) and we were with her when she passed away.

I kept looking for her last night. She was one of those very sweet cats who never fought with any of the other cats. We miss her.


May 9, 2021

thyroid    kidney disease    goodbye    catstuff   

      Thursday, May 27, 2021


catstuff
05:52 AM - 05/27/2021

The topic: We said goodbye to Mario yesterday
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It was time.

This was a hard loss for me. For the past few years, his care took up a lot of time. Making sure he was pooping, if he wasn't upping his meds, hand feeding him (which helped me monitor that he was actually eating), giving fluids when needed.

Doing all we could to make him comfortable.

It wasn't working any longer. Something happened Tuesday, we're not sure what, but he was eating in the garage and it was taking longer than I thought it should, I found him outside in the heat, more disoriented than normal (don't forget, he was blind, and I think maybe he'd had a stroke or two since). I brought him in, set him on the bed and he fell over. His back legs, never his strong limbs, couldn't hold him up. And by his breathing, it was obvious it was taking more energy than he was used to. This was a first.

I called the vet to make the goodbye appointment that afternoon, but they were booked and it was too late to bring him in at that point. I made the appointment for first thing yesterday morning.

It was a hard call. A very hard call. He went quietly. He kind of fought the sedation, but he finally relaxed.

There's more to say, but I'm starting to tear up and I don't want to cry today. So, I'll leave the memories for a later time.

 

mario    goodbye    catstuff   

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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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