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2004-11-30

by @ Tuesday, November 30th, 2004. Filed under Life

* * * So, remember that quilt I was so happy about a few months ago? The one I found on eBay and was thrilled that it was so inexpensive, because I like quilts and I bought it and started using it as a comforter on the bed in my room (you can see what it looked like in the picture of Meester Boogers and Spot at the end of the page)? Yeah, that didn’t last long. For one, Spanky barfed on it while I was in Maine, so Fred had to run it through the washer and dryer (yeah, I know – but the directions that came with the damn thing said it was okay to wash and dry it if needed), and then the day I got home from Myrtle Beach we had to wash it again, since Spot was snuggled up with a dead bird on the bed and I didn’t want to get mites or lice or whatever the hell it is that wild birds carry. Then, a few weeks ago Fred was moving his legs around or something – to be honest, I have no freakin’ clue what exactly he was doing – and a square ripped. I tried to sew it back together, but I’m no seamstress and was too impatient, so I never did get it done. Also, the fabric of the quilt was starting to pill, and I finally got annoyed, and decided it was time to buy a new comforter. Like I mentioned, the spud and I went into Dillard’s and McRae’s to look at their comforters, but not only did I not like anything I saw, but everything there was in the area of $300, and the days when I’d spend that much money on something the cats will destroy in – if I’m lucky – a year are long, long gone. We went over to Linens ‘n Things, where there were more way-too-expensive comforters. All the ones I really liked were $100 – $200, and that’s still more than I want to spend. I found a “bed in a bag” that I could live with (I find it pretty funny that to spend less on a comforter, I have to get the set of sheets, shams, and bedskirt too, whereas with the expensive comforters, all you get is the comforter) and said something like “Well, it’s ugly, but I can live with it. I’ll only have to look at it for a year, anyway.” The spud said “Why don’t we go to Bed, Bath and Beyond? You might find something you like there!” “But if I don’t find something I like there, I’ll have to come back here!” I said. And then I remembered that the last two or three comforters I’ve bought have come from Bed, Bath and Beyond, and I decided I might as well take a look. So, long story short (too late!), I found a bed-in-a-bag that I disliked less than the one I’d found at Linens ‘n Things, plus it was blue, so I bought it. I ended up spending ten dollars less than I would have on the other one, too. I need to remember to go to Bed, Bath and Beyond next time I need a comforter.

The only problem is that I always prefer to buy comforters in king-size, because the queen-size really don’t cover the bed as much as I’d like, but my bed’s a queen-size and thus king-size sheets wouldn’t fit. I solved this dilemma by remembering that Fred’s bed is king-size, so I could get rid of one of the crappy set of sheets I’ve been using on his bed, and use the new sheets instead. Problem solved. Everyone’s happy. I give it two weeks before someone barfs on the new comforter.
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I’m amazed that Spot would let Meester Boogers sleep so close to him. Usually he gets up and walks away in a huff if Meester Boogers tries to snuggle. Maybe he doesn’t realize Meester Boogers is there…
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2004-11-29

by @ Monday, November 29th, 2004. Filed under Life

* * * Ever had one of those days when you just can’t remember the name of anything? I was chatting with my sister last night, and I was trying to ask her what Bath and Body Works products she likes, and I could NOT for the life of me think of the words I wanted to say. “What the hell is that stuff you put in the bath?” I asked Fred. “Bath fizzies?” he offered. “No, not fizzies, the stuff you pour in….” “Water?” “Har har. No, the liquid stuff you put in, and it makes bubbles…” “Bubble bath!” he said. “Oh yeah, that’s right.” Duhr. Then I was talking to my mother on the phone and I was trying to tell her about something new we’d tried the other night. “You take these, um… beans… Oh, what the hell are they called?” “Baked beans?” my mother suggested. “No, not baked beans… Oh, what the hell… Fred! What are those beans?” “Garbanzo beans!” he said immediately. “Right, right, garbanzo beans…” Duhr. I’m telling you, it’s the early-onset Alzheimer’s…

* * *
The garbanzo bean recipe we tried the other night: Open a can of garbanzo beans, drain and rinse. Toss with 2 T. olive oil and the spices of your choice (I used garlic salt and cayenne). Spread out on a cookie sheet. Cook for 30 – 45 minutes at 450�, stirring often (I stirred every 15 minutes) until beans are dark brown. (Ours were done at 30 minutes) Fred bought a bag of dried garbanzo beans yesterday, since a bag is going to be cheaper than buying cans, soaked a small amount of the beans overnight, microwaved them for a little while, and then followed the above recipe. He said that they weren’t quite done at 30 minutes, but were burned at 40. Anyway, they’re pretty damn good. The ones I made with garlic salt and cayenne were good, though a little more spicy than I would have liked. I’m going to make some more today, with different spices. They’re suprisingly good AND good for you. Can’t beat that with a… thing. You know. That you beat things with?
* * *
A few nights ago I was laying in bed ready to fall asleep when the back of my arm started itching. With my eyes closed, I reached up with the hand of my opposite arm and began scratching the itch. Halfway through the scratching process, I opened my eyes, caught a glimpse of my hand, and almost had a heart attack because I thought someone else was in the room. At least once every evening when I’m laying in bed reading, I catch sight of one of the posters of the bed and jump, thinking that someone’s standing there. Yep. I’m a freak.
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“TWELVE TWENTY-NINE AND ALL IS WELL!”
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2004-11-26

by @ Friday, November 26th, 2004. Filed under Life

* * * Thanksgiving was faaaaaabulous. We went to Fred’s sister’s house and had all the usual stuff. Fred’s father and stepmother made the turkey, and it was really good – even more so last night when I had a turkey sandwich for dinner. We – by which I mean “I” – were responsible for the sweet potato casserole. It’s pretty easy to make, and Wednesday morning I decided to put it together so we could just pop it in the oven before we left the house Thursday. I got the whole damn casserole put together with the topping sprinkled on top, and I thought “Huh. That doesn’t quite look right. Oh well.”, shrugged, covered the casserole, put it in the fridge, and began cleaning up. Whereupon I realized that I’d forgotten to put the friggin’ pecans in the topping. I called Fred and said “Do you suppose I could just sprinkle the pecans across the top?” “Well,” he said. “Why don’t you mix up a half-batch of the topping, put the pecans in that, and sprinkle it across the top.” I was instantly enraged, way more pissed off than I should have been, given that the whole situation was MY OWN STUPID FAULT. (Actually, it was the fault of the dishtowel which was hiding the bag of pecans. Stupid dishtowel.) I got all clipped and pissed-off sounding with Fred. “Well, what?” he said, himself annoyed. “What do you want me to say?” “That it would be fine to just sprinkle the pecans across the top!” I said. Honestly – must I always spell EVERYTHING out? “Then sprinkle the pecans across the top!” “FINE.” “OKAY.” “Good-bye!” I said, and he said goodbye, and we hung up. And then, fuming the entire time, I mixed up a half-batch of the topping, added the pecans and sprinkled them across the top. Bastard. It turned out pretty damn good, because really – you can’t have too much of a brown sugar and butter topping, can you? The best part of Thanksgiving, though, was the apple tart Fred’s sister’s boyfriend – who is French – made. It wasn’t quite cooked in the middle, but that was A-OK fine with me, ’cause the outside crust was absolutely fucking fabulous. I wanted to divorce Fred on the spot and marry the crust, it was so amazing. Those French sure do know how to cook.

* * *
Speaking of Fred’s sister’s boyfriend, he seems like a really nice guy. But – and I know I’ve mentioned this in the past – when I’m listening to someone with a very thick accent always makes me feel stupid, because I have a hard time understanding what they’re saying. Yesterday, though, even though I could only understand about every third word he was saying, I still got the gist of what he was saying. Kind of like Shakespeare, I guess – I couldn’t for the life of me tell you what any single line in a Shakespeare play means, but I pretty much know what’s happening in the course of that scene. (My 11th grade English teacher was not impressed by my “I have no idea what they’re saying, but I know what’s going on!” argument, by the way.)
* * *
I was up until almost 2:00 this morning. This happened because around 10:30, after I’d folded a load of clothes and put them away, I decided to come downstairs and check my email one last time before I went to sleep. Long story short, I added an email address to my robynand3rson.com domain, and checked it a few times to make sure it was working. It seemed to be working okay, so I sent one last test email, and upon checking that email account I started getting an error message. And then I realized my other robynand3rson.com email – the one I use for the giveaway page – was coming back with the same fucking error. After fiddling around with several different things – more on that in a moment – I still couldn’t access either of my robynand3rson.com emails. Which is when I remembered that when I’d had any domain-type problems in the past, all I did was put a help desk ticket in and the helpful support people fixed it, and all was good. So I went to the Ventures Online page, whereupon I was reminded that Ventures was bought out by some company called Data393. When I clicked on the “support” link on the Data393 page, it said that unless I’d gotten a Data393 password, to use the Ventures Online support page for the time being. So I followed the link back to the Ventures Online support page, clicked on the “Put a help desk ticket in” link, and got an error. No matter how many times I clicked that fucking link, I always got an error. I hate it when that happens. Well, no problem, right? I’ll just send them an email! Except… apparently you can’t fucking do that. Again, no problem – I’ll fill out the “emergency pager” form! Except… you can’t do that if you don’t have a help desk ticket. Okay, fine! I’ll fill out the feedback form to alert them that their help desk link is fucked, right? Except… I filled out the feedback form, clicked submit, and GOT A GODDAMN ERROR. By this time it was midnight and I was swearing up a storm (and Miz Poo was laying on her pillow trying to decide whether she should be alarmed) and I was pissed beyond words. I went back to the Data393 page, thinking that I’d just use THEIR support page, only guess what? You can’t use it unless you have a password. And had they sent me a password? Why, no. OF COURSE NOT. Finally, I ended up on the Data393 “contact” page and though there was no email address for the support team – OF COURSE – there were email addresses for the sales, abuse, and careers (?) departments. I ended up emailing the sales department, detailing the problems I was having, and calling their support page “spectacularly unhelpful.” I stomped upstairs around 12:30, turned the light off, and instead of going to sleep, tossed and turning, fuming all the while. My main concern was that I had updated the giveaway page yesterday, and now who the hell knew when I was going to be able to access that email? Also, I had planned to start taking names and addresses for Christmas cards today, and who knew when I would be able to access THAT email? After thinking about it for a little while, I got up again, came downstairs, logged into my hiwaay.net account, and created two more email addresses. Yes, I’m supposed to be cancelling my hiwaay.net account at the end of this month, but I guess I’ll just friggin’ wait ’til the end of December instead. Around 1:30 I went back upstairs and read for a little while before turning the light off. I finally fell asleep, but what do you suppose I dreamed about all night long? That’s right, spectacularly unhelpful support pages. This morning I discovered that Data393 had emailed FRED a password, because the billing is under his name, and after fucking all, why would I need to access the stupid support page? I’m only the fucking OWNER of the domain. So I put in a help ticket, got a quick response (“We’re checking into it”) and have heard nothing else in the past three hours. If I could just hunt down, say, the head of Data393 and punch him or her in the face several times, I’m sure I’d feel WAY better.
* * *
Miz Poo has been driving me absolutely fucking nuts lately. She hops up on my desk and sits between me and the monitor. No, she doesn’t want to lay down. No, she doesn’t want to go over on her pillow. No, she doesn’t want her belly rubbed. She just wants to sit there, in the way, and half-doze while I lean around her to see the screen. ARGH!
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I swear to you, he was staring all wide-eyed and panicked-looking at absolutely nothing. Maybe there was a ghost taunting him…
* * *
Time to let me know you want a holiday card! (And yes, of course I’m more than happy to send cards to other countries!) Go here, fill out the form, and click on the button. That’s it. Simple, eh? I’m taking names and addresses until December 20th this year, just because I can. If you’d like to send me a card as well (not required, but always appreciated), send it to: Robyn Anderson, PO Box 565, Madison, AL 35758 USA.
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2004-11-24

by @ Wednesday, November 24th, 2004. Filed under Life

kidding. There was no actual big pile of money – it was theoretical, so I could bitch about how much money we had to spend on the car and the cat.

* * *
Also, all y’all who are looking for Cat Town? It’s here.
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For some reason last night as I was laying in bed trying to go to sleep I started thinking about the time when I was in 7th or 8th grade, in History class (it might not have been History, but it was one of those boring classes). I finished my quiz and handed it in, and sat. As I was sitting down the teacher said (apparently it was a timed quiz) “Okay, class, you have thirty seconds to finish!” As I always carried a book to class with me, I reached over and opened my book, hoping to read a few paragraphs before I had to shut the book and pay attention. The teacher saw me open my book, and he immediately began making fun of me for thinking that I could get much read in thirty seconds, told us all a story about how he’d been watching TV and trying to read during the commercials because he was reading a really good book, only he was reading in such short bursts that he couldn’t remember what he’d read and would have to go back and read it again. And then he mocked me some more for thinking I could get any real reading in. And I just glared at him and thought to myself Just because you’re too stupid and scatterbrained to read and watch TV at the same time doesn’t mean I am, jackass. Seriously, I used to be able to have a TV show on and read while I was watching the show, and know exactly what was going on, on both the TV and in my book. Now, though, even if I’m sitting and doing nothing but watching TV half the time I only have a vague idea of what the hell is going on, which is why I need to read the Television Without Pity recaps, so I can figure out what the hell happened. I guess I know what that teacher meant, now that I’m approximately the same age he was at the time. I still think he’s a jackass, though.
* * *
Pet store pictures from Monday are here, and Tuesday (I covered for the regular Tuesday person) are here.
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Entries are pitifully short lately, aren’t they? I think it must just be the time of year. We’re going to Fred’s sister’s for Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow, so chances are good unless I have some good information to impart, there’ll be no entry. In any case, y’all have an excellent Thanksgiving (or an excellent Thursday, whichever is the case for you), and I’ll see you on Friday!
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2000: Just a little more knowledge o’ Robyn y’all can add to your notes. You’re welcome.]]>

2004-11-23

by @ Tuesday, November 23rd, 2004. Filed under Life

Eudora, Outlook, or any other mail client to download your email? That’s why I’m changing my email address – I was just waiting for that particular feature to be available. The best part is that gmail still catches the spam so you don’t end up downloading it. I do love, love, love the gmail!

* * *
So I was about asleep last night when the phone rang. It was my friend Liz, half-drunk after a really crappy night. She placed an online personal and has ended up meeting some real assholes – since last week she spent four evenings chatting (both online and on the phone) with a guy she hit it off with. Now, Liz is overweight. Not as overweight as I am, but overweight, and she’s smart enough to tell guys right off the bat that she is. Because if that’s going to bother them, then why waste her time? This guy she met online last week swore up and down and all around that her weight wouldn’t bother him. They spent a lot of time on the phone, and last night it became apparent that, in fact, the fact that she’s overweight bothered him. She told him off and hung up and went out to meet friends at a bar and ended up having a pretty good time. But my question is this – if he knew that an overweight woman would not appeal to him, why the fuck did he have to waste her time? Why spend all that time on the phone with her, all that time chatting online with her, all that time on his webcam (IF YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN), when in the end he wasn’t really interested? “And he’s not much to look at, but that didn’t bother me!” Liz said. You know, I just don’t get it. There are these really dorky looking guys out there, who have such an inflated ego that they think they deserve a woman who looks as (shudder) perfect as a supermodel. I know there are women who are the same, but I’ve found that the women are vastly outnumbered by the guys who will watch a gorgeous woman walk down the street and sneer “She’s got fat ankles!” I mean, please. What the fuck? Liz said several times “I don’t CARE if they have a problem with me being overweight – I wish they’d just SAY SO instead of wasting my time!” She also told me how lucky I was to have found a guy who’s so perfect for me and loves me whether I’m all dressed up with perfectly blow-dried hair or shlumping around in sweats and a holey t-shirt. Of course, she didn’t have to tell me how lucky I am – I already knew it.
* * *
Interested in reading and critiquing something Fred and I wrote together? Go here, follow the link to read what we wrote, and leave any comments at the end of Fred’s entry.
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Displeased.
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2004-11-22

by @ Monday, November 22nd, 2004. Filed under Life

gmail email address to email me, okay? I won’t cancel the hiwaay.net accounts until the end of the month, so if you email me at my hiwaay.net account, you’ll get a gentle reminder email asking you to change my email address in your address book. Fair enough?

* * *
Also, if anyone out there wants to design a Christmas-themed logo for me for next month, go for it. If no one’s feeling creative, I’ll just use the one Kat designed for me last year.
* * *
Friday evening at 5:30 the phone rang. Fred checked the caller ID and said “It’s Dr. Judy’s office!” Since I’d been waiting all week to hear what my test results were, I grabbed the phone out of his hand and answered it. Now, before I go on, let me put a disclaimer up in big, bold capital letters, mm’kay? IF YOU OR SOMEONE YOU KNOW HAS THIS CONDITION OR YOU ARE A MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL WITH AN OPINION ABOUT THIS, FEEL FREE TO LEAVE A COMMENT. IF, ON THE OTHER HAND, YOU ARE ABOUT TO GO TO GOOGLE AND LOOK IT UP SO THAT YOU CAN CUT AND PASTE EVERYTHING YOU’VE LEARNED ABOUT IT, PLEASE DON’T. BECAUSE I KNOW HOW TO GOOGLE JUST AS WELL AS YOU DO, AND CHANCES ARE PRETTY DAMN GOOD I’VE ALREADY SEEN IT. THANK YOU. End disclaimer. The nurse told me that the echocardiogram showed that I have “mild tricuspid regurgitation” (translation via Google: Tricuspid regurgitation is leakage of blood backward through the tricuspid valve each time the right ventricle contracts.) and that if I have any medical procedures or dental word done, I need to have antibiotic prophylaxis beforehand. The Holter monitor showed occasional periods of rapid heartbeat. The nurse told me that the options were to take medication (no, she didn’t say what kind of medication, and I didn’t think to ask) or just monitor it for now. I opted to leave it alone for now, only because I don’t want to start on any medication at this point before I’ve talked to the doctor. The office had already closed by the time the nurse called, so I wasn’t able to make an appointment on Friday. I called this morning to make an appointment and have one next Wednesday (December 1st!) in the afternoon. Hopefully I don’t keel over dead before then. (THAT WAS A JOKE. I’m not going to keel over dead, people.) Naturally – because I am me, after all – I immediately set about trying to find ways to exploit my new “condition.” Friday night when I got upstairs I realized I’d left my book downstairs. “I left my book downstairs,” I said to Fred, who was already laying in bed reading. “Oh yeah?” he said. I theatrically fell onto the bed and clutched at my chest. “Oh, my heart,” I moaned. He laughed, but then he went down to get my book for me. Score! Later, I was laying on my back in the bed reading and Miz Poo decided to stomp her porky ass across my chest, and I pushed her off and said “Miz Pooty, you’re gonna give Momma a heart attack”, which I thought was mildly amusing at best, but Fred laughed so hard he about wheezed. Last night after farting in bed (SUPPOSEDLY, because after all I don’t fart) I said “I can’t help it! I have a heart condition!”, but he was not amused. I guess I need to be careful where and when I try to exploit it, eh? For instance, if he drags us into another endless game of Trivial Pursuit on Thanksgiving, you can bet your ass I’ll fake a heart attack without thinking twice. I’ll report back after I’ve seen the doctor to let y’all know what she’s said.
* * *
From my comments: I asked it before but perhaps I missed your answer…but why is it not bad for cats to consume raw chicken? I have heard you mention several times feeding them bits and I KNOW it can’t be bad if you and Fred feed it to them. I’m curious. Also, do your cats beg for food? My cat, Mel, has taken to meowing LOUDLY as we eat dinner wanting some bits of meat (only meat!). It becomes bothersome when you have guests and a begging cat! I guess it’s not bad for them because they’re animals who, in the wild, consume raw squirrels (are there squirrels in the wild?) and other small animals, so their system is set up to digest raw meat. That’s the way I look at it, anyway. We don’t give them a lot of raw meat (although I bet Meester Boogers would eat three pounds of raw chicken if we’d let him), just small amounts, but so far as we know, they’ve never gotten sick from it. Meester Boogers is far and away the most interested in raw meat, with Spanky and Spot coming in a distant second. Miz Poo isn’t interested in it at all – in fact, the only kind of people food she’d interested in is the liquid from cans of canned chicken or tuna. They don’t usually beg at the table, although Meester Boogers, Spanky, and Spot will sit and make it clear that if some food came their way, they probably wouldn’t turn it down. Oddly enough, Spot will every once in a while decide that whatever we’re eating smells really good to him, and he’ll sit next to Fred or I and meow squeakily and pat at our arm with his paw until we give him some. Without fail, he sniffs at it, turns up his nose, and walks away.
*
Hey Robyn – I wanted to know what you think of Dr. Phil this season, specifically the Cheating Husband Doctor with the Pregnant Mistress. Why on earth does his wife not leave that man??? He seems to have the emotional maturity of a 12 year old. Oh man, Dr. Phil this season is pretty damn good. I’m sad to say that I missed the first show with the cheating husband and his wife, but I caught the second episode, and I don’t for the life of me get why she doesn’t kick his ass to the curb. I mean, it’s one thing if he’d cheated and he was really sorry and he was going to do everything he could to make it work, but this man actually asked his wife why he couldn’t have her and the mistress, too! He had sex with the mistress IN THE WIFE’S BED while she was with her dying father! When they have fights, he threatens to go be with the other woman. GAH. He’s a huge shithead, that one. All I can guess is that it’s really important to the wife to save her marriage and/or she’s just really scared at the idea of being on her own. Only she can say for sure, but I’m thinking she deserves better. Don’t you wonder what’s going on with people that they’re willing to show all their dirty laundry on the Dr. Phil show, with millions of people watching? I mean, the real-life desperate housewife who was selling drugs to make money to buy her own drugs – yikes! Hi Robyn, you could brag about having icelandic readers. We just love your blog! Iiiiiiiiiiiiiii have Icelandic readers who loooooooooove me, and youuuuuuuuuu don’t!!!! Speaking of Iceland, that is one seriously gorgeous country. We watched last week’s episode of Iceland and talked about how we’d love to visit one day.
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I could not wait to tell you how much I love your journal. I only check it 56,000 times a day. I think I got the link to it from jane or Nance. I can’t remember, since I am an oldie but goodie. BTW Whatever happened to that (pile)of money that was cluttering up your corner. Surely you did not spend it ALL on the freaking car. Just wondering! Nanamama 😉 Oh, between the car and the cats, you know that pile o’ money is looooong gone. I’m not complaining, though – that corner of the room was getting mighty dusty.
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Hey, Robyn, do you have enough smiley face stuff? Sometimes, I come accross a giveaway smiley face thing, and think, “hey! I’ll send this to Robyn!” But then I think, “ah, she probably already has so much of this stuff, she doesn’t want it.” Clearly, I think of you everytime I see a happy face and probably always will! Well, y’know, you can never have enough smiley face stuff! I got a really cool calculator in the mail a few weeks ago from the very cool Amy that makes me grin every time I use it. And then I got smiley-face gum from Amy just a few days later! Amy rocks.
Smiley faces always make me smile!
Clearly the fact that so many of you think of me when you see smiley faces means that my plan to take over the world is almost complete…
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My family – 2 children and hubby are moving to a new home in a few weeks (not a long distance move), and I would like to know if you have any suggestions to lessen the stress I’m sure the pets will feel? I don’t really have any good advice – the time we moved from our old house to where we are now, it was a distance of about a mile (if not less) and we had to lock the cats in the bathroom so they wouldn’t get in the way of the movers, and they were all freaked out for about two weeks straight. I would recommend that once you’re all moved into the house, you make sure to show them things that are familiar to them, whether it’s some of their toys or what they liked to sleep on in the new house, or whatever. Anyone else have suggestions? Leave ’em in the comments.
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Did you ever get a response to the “have you ever smoked peanut shells?” question – whether it referred to inhaling or barbecuing? I’d like to know who does that myself. (This is regarding one of the questions in that survey I did a while back) I never did get an answer to that, and I’m still curious which it meant!
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Why oh why Robyn must you torment us with not letting us know what car Fred drives? Can u give us even a clue? just a little clue? PUH-LEASE!! *said in the most pathetic voice possible* and I missed the whole thing about Fred’s car. Why is it a secret? Is he being stalked? Are there Married White Males all over the US losing weight, going from fat to phat, taking up hiking, working on computers and all the need to complete the transformation is THE SAME CAR?!?!?!?! Sorry, got carried away. I just think it is funny that (seemingly) everything else about him is posted on the internet, why not that? It started out that Fred didn’t want people to know what he’d bought because then everyone would give their opinion about it (“Oh, I drove one of those, and it sucked!”), and that drives him crazy sometimes. Now, he just likes to see y’all go nuts ’cause he won’t tell you what he bought. He’s a sadistic bastard, that one.
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Roar… ROAAAAR… RAAAAWWWWRRRRRR… Urrrp.
(Pictures taken by Fred)
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2004-11-19

by @ Friday, November 19th, 2004. Filed under Life

journals and blogs I read page is updated to the best of my ability. I’m sure there’s a blog or journal or two I forgot to put on there, but hopefully I’ll realize that and get ’em added as I notice they’re not on the list. If I read your journal or blog and it’s not on the list (I didn’t list every journal and blog by it’s journal/ blog name – some I listed by the domain name, and some by the journaller/ blogger name. Because I can.) let me know and I’ll add you. They’re listed alphabetically and I’m using blogrolling to keep the list, which is why it’s just a long list rather than several columns across the page. In the future you can get to that list by clicking on “Who I Read” over there in the sidebar under “other”.

* * *
More from my comments: OK..I’ll bite … what is your very favourite thing to make for dinner… you most yummy concoction ever? Well. My favorite thing to make for dinner is reservations, of course. Bahahah! Ha! Hee! ::snort:: Okay, seriously. I just hate cooking. If I were given the choice, I would never be required to cook for the rest of my life. But we don’t order out or go out during the week and I only require Fred to cook on Saturday and Sunday, so usually during the week I have to cook, though to be perfectly honest we have sandwiches on Thursday night and either order out or go out on Friday night, so I only have to cook on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. But I digress. These days my favorite dish to make is shepherd’s pie, because it’s easy as hell (though the mashed potatoes are a bit of a pain; I have the unfortunate habit of not cooking the potatoes long enough, and thus the mashed potatoes end up lumpy), I can throw it together, toss it in the oven, and I don’t even have to make a side dish to go with it. Because protein? Check. Carbs? Check. Veggies? Check. It’s the perfect all-in-one meal and it tastes damn fine.
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how about telling us why you adopted each cat that you have (i.e. what was it about their personality that you liked, or did you just adopt them because they were too cute to pass up….etc) And maybe on top of that…what do you like/dislike about them now since they’ve been integrated into your family? Ooh, this is a good question. Okay, here we go, in order of age. Spot showed up at Fred’s back door about ten years ago, before Fred and I met. He was a small kitten, and he sat at Fred’s apartment door howling his head off all night long. Any time Fred would open the door, Spot would run like hell and hide, then Fred would shut the door and go back to bed, and Spot would come back and resume howling. Fred started leaving food out for Spot and would sit by the back door while Spot ate. It took a few days, but Spot finally got comfortable enough to approach Fred, and as soon as Fred got his hands on Spot, he tossed him into a cat carrier and took him to the vet. He’s been with Fred ever since. Because of the night he spent howling at the door, he apparently did some permanent damage to his vocal chords, and ever since rather than meowing, he kind of squeaks. And when something’s bothering him, he squeaks a LOT. I love Spot to death and he’s such a sweet, gentle guy that I have only one complaint about him, and that is the way he thinks everyone’s out to get him. After living with him for eight years now he is finally at the point where when I walk into a room he doesn’t immediately lose his shit and run under the bed. But if I walk in his general direction, he acts like I’m running over to kick him and he runs away. If I look at him, he gets nervous. If I want to pet him, I have to carefully approach him, talking nicely to him, and then carefully reach out and pet him, whereupon he forgets that he’s a spaz, and throws himself onto his back so I can rub his stomach. Oh, and he’s the loudest licker I’ve ever heard. You can hear that boy licking himself from three rooms away. I can hear him licking even if I have ear plugs in sometimes, and trust me – it’s really annoying as hell.
“What? How else am I going to get clean?”
Spanky was a Christmas present from Fred to me our very first Christmas together. At that time we had two cats, Spot and the spud’s cat, who I called PFE (pronounced “Piffy”) and the spud referred to as “Katie”. We spent Thanksgiving at his sister’s house, and she had a small kitten. I spent the afternoon snuggling with the kitten and that, of course, kicked off the “I want a KITTY!” cravings. I talked and talked and TALKED about getting a kitten and couldn’t get Fred to agree, because he thought that two cats was enough in an apartment the size of ours (and may I say ha ha HA, because by the time we moved out two years later we had four cats). I was pretty sure there was no way in hell we were going to get a kitten, when Fred arrived home from work… holding Spanky. He’d gone to a pet store near work, and they had a number of kittens. He went through the kittens they had, picking them up to check them out, and the only kitten who showed the slightest bit of curiosity was Spanky. Spanky absolutely reeked when Fred brought him home, because the lady at the pet store had put some kind of nasty perfumed powder on him. God, it was awful. From the very first, Spanky was MY baby. He followed me around all day, he slept with me at night, and when I was standing in the kitchen doing dishes, he’d curl up between my feet and go to sleep. I accidentally kicked him across the kitchen floor more times than I could begin to count. He was also a climber – he loved to climb up on my shoulder when I was sitting on the couch. He was still so little when we first got him that he wouldn’t eat hard cat food, so we had to feed him baby food for the first week or so, then mixed hard food in until he was on nothing but cat food. My only gripe about Spanky is that sometimes he feels the need to hear his own voice and he will howl and howl and howl until you hunt him down and shoot air or water at him. He’s awfully sweet, though. Several years ago when Fred and I were both working at his company, Fred would get up and go to work, and an hour or so later I’d get up and start getting ready for work. Invariably when I was just out of the shower Fred would call to tell me something, and I’d sit on the bed with my legs crossed – Indian style – and Spanky would curl up in between my legs. To this day, if I’m sitting on the bed and talking on the phone, he has to be on me, or he gets freaked out.
Baby Spanky.
Miz Poo has been my baby for almost exactly five years. Fred and I were in South Huntsville when I talked him into stopping at the pet store that was then run by the no-kill shelter I volunteer for. I walked in and saw this tiny torti kitten in a cage with a couple of other small kittens. I walked over to talk to her, and she started howling at me. I picked her up, and she snuggled into me, purring like mad. I had promised Fred before we even stepped into the store that I wouldn’t try to get him to adopt a kitten, so when he said we needed to get going, I put the kitten back into her cage and left, wanting to cry. She howled after me the entire time I was walking out of the store. I spent the next several days pouting and begging and pouting some more, until Fred could no longer stand it, and he agreed that I could get her, as long as I promised to clean the litter box for the rest of my life. I was all excited for a while, and then I remembered what a pain in the ass kittens can be, and I thought maybe it would be better not to get her, and so I decided not to get her. Fast forward a few weeks to the Wednesday before Thanksgiving. The spud and I went out and had lunch at our favorite chinese restaurant. We were going to go to the movies, but when we got to the movie theater the lines were out the doors, and so I said “Hey. Let’s go to the pet store and check out the kitties!” Of course – being her mother’s daughter – she was all for it, so I called Fred and told him where we were going. “If you adopt that kitten, you have to clean out the litter box for the rest of your life!” Fred reminded me. Up until that point, we’d been taking turns cleaning it out. “Oh, I’m sure she’s been adopted!” I said. We got to the pet store and walked through the door, and from her cage half the store away the kitten spotted me and began howling at the top of her very loud lungs. I went and took her out of the cage and carried her around the store. I would pet her for a minute and then stop, and she’d snuggle into my shoulder even more and meow bitchily at me until I began petting her again. I was so torn – I loved her to death, but I didn’t really want to deal with a kitten in the house. I was about to put her back into her cage when the spud said “Can’t we get her?” and I said “Go get my checkbook out of the car before I change my mind!” She did, and we adopted her, and though I worried like hell about the other cats hurting her, she definitely knew how to hold her own. And she’s still kicking ass. My complaint about Miz Poo is that she LOVES to jump up on my desk and sit between me and the monitor. She won’t be coaxed to lay down, she won’t hear of going over to lay on her pillow, no. She must sit there as long as she wants, usually half-dozing in her sitting position while I lean around her to see the monitor until she decides she wants to be somewhere else.
Still one of my favorite pictures of her. It’s a rough life, eh?
Stanley (AKA Meester Boogers), I think you all know the story about. But in case you don’t, I’ll tell it again. Mr. Fancypants disappeared at the beginning of the summer of 2003. The beginning of October, we started talking about getting another cat. We talked about it for a few days and then stopped talking about it, saying that we’d just stick with four cats for the time being, and besides – Mr. Fancypants COULD still show up again. And then one Friday afternoon when Fred had been home from work for an hour or so, he said “Let’s go to the no-kill cat shelter and see what they have for kittens!” The words were barely out of his mouth and I was running out the door. We got to the shelter and started looking at the cats. I fell in love with a tiny black kitten named Debby but she hadn’t been fixed yet and thus couldn’t be adopted out (the policy of the shelter, and a damn good one), so we kept looking. In the room of older cats there was a sweet tabby I liked, but we had agreed we’d get a younger cat, since they tend to adapt better when thrown into a situation where there are older cats already present in the home. Then Fred remembered a picture I’d seen on the shelter’s web page a few weeks prior; this one to be exact:
“Is Paw Paw here?” Fred asked. The lady who runs the shelter told us that he was recovering from an upper respiratory infection and was quarantined in the bathroom. We went in and looked at him, and he was clearly just SUCH a character that we decided he’d fit in nicely. We adopted him then and there and haven’t regretted it for one second since. When we were trying to come up with a name for him I suggested “Stumpy” or “Stubby” (gotta be an “S” name, dontchaknow), but Fred looked at me all disapprovingly and said that that would be making fun of his disability (ie, his stumpy little tail). And what do we call him now, other than Meester Boogers? That’s right, Stumpy. I know I write about him all the time and put up pictures of him constantly, but he’s just such an active, curious little guy and he always makes me laugh. He makes this noise that I simply can’t describe – it’s similar to a chirp, only it’s a deeper sound. It sounds very grumpy, and I’ve come to refer to it as a “grump”. He’s a happy, happy kitty and I think he realizes just how good he’s got it. He’s definitely Fred’s cat – when we’re sitting and watching TV he’ll go and rub up against Fred’s legs and then flop down at his feet. He gets excited when Fred gets home, and on the rare occasion Fred has a meeting in the evening, Meester Boogers grumps around the house and isn’t happy until Fred gets home. My complaint about Meester Boogers is that he isn’t a cuddler. He’s friendly, and he’s always happy to see you come in the door. If you’re doing something, he’ll come rub on you and check out whatever it is you’re doing, but he doesn’t like to be held and cuddled, which sucks because I’d LOVE to snuggle with him every now and then. Oh, I’m not crazy about his killing small rodents or birds and bringing them into the house, either.
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I’ve been meaning to ask … How’s the diet / exercise thing going these days? You haven’t updated OFB since 8/31 and I’m always so inspired with how you keep going. I’ve jumped off the diet / exercise bandwagon so many times that I think I’ve injured myself! Oh, it’s going absolutely horribly, which is why there’s been no update. I think for the time being OFB is on hiatus. ’nuff said. 🙂
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Hey! When are you going to take signups for Christmas Cards this year? What are your plans for Thanksgiving this year. I’ll start taking names and addresses the day after Thanksgiving. Isn’t that when I always do? I thought it was, but I could be wrong. I think for Thanksgiving we’ll be eating dinner at Fred’s sister’s house with his father and stepmother, sister, her boyfriend, his niece and nephew. We’re supposed to bring something – Fred usually makes a fancy cake or pie – but we’re not sure whether we’re bringing dessert this year or not. I think I actually made a poppy seed cake last year, and it went over really well. There wasn’t a single crumb left by the time we were ready to leave.
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Robyn, I need your help!! Sometime in the past (please don’t ask me when – it’s all a big blur to me) you mention a product that Fred had bought to get rid of the cat piss smell in your carpet. What was the name of the product and where did he get it from? It’s called Axi-Dent, and we actually bought a half-gallon bottle of it, concentrated, from the guy who came to clean our carpet. You can buy it here. It worked really well for us, though it has a pleasing berry smell that now makes me think of cat pee whenever I smell it.
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OK, I have a question. I know you’ve already told us, but I’ll be damned if I’d know where to start looking, but….what kind of digital camera do you guys use. I know you upgraded a little while back, and I’m thinking it’s a Sony Cybershot. Do you love it? What bells and whistles do you love/could do without? I’m looking to upgrade mine, if you hadn’t guessed! The newest camera we have is a Sony Cybershot DSC-V1, and it is absolutely amazing. It shoots short movies WITH SOUND (our previous Cybershot shot movies but didn’t have sound), but mostly I love it because it is 5.0 megapixels and takes the clearest, crispest pictures you could ever hope to see. Of course, the down side to that is that each picture takes up a lot of space. The up side is that when you print out those pictures they look absolutely amazing. At this point, though, I’m not using that camera all that much because it got dropped before I went to Myrtle Beach in October. It works as long as you don’t zoom, but if you try to zoom, it can’t focus. Something got knocked around inside and needs to be fixed. Someone’s supposed to take the camera to the store, but keeps putting it off. Ahem. Okay, that’s it for today. I’ll answer the rest of the questions on Monday – and if you have one, leave it in the comments and I’ll see what I can do for you.
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Contemplating the state of the universe and trying to figure out how to fix it.
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2004-11-18

by @ Thursday, November 18th, 2004. Filed under Life

Robyn, I have a question for ya! At your highest weight did you ever have sleep apnea? The reason I ask is that I have it, and I asked the doctor why I have it while others with similar weights don’t seem to have the problem. His reply was that they did have it (probably just as bad as me) but weren’t aware that they had it. Sorry for rambling, just curious. Btw I don’t necessarily believe the doctor. I think he can’t tell me why me and not someone else, so he’s just claiming all overweight people have it. Thanks in advance. As far as I’m aware, I never had sleep apnea, though it’s possible that I had it and didn’t know it. Obesity, according to this page, is the biggest risk factor for sleep apnea, but it doesn’t say anywhere that all overweight people have it. I think you might be right about your doctor claiming all overweight people have it because he doesn’t know why you have it and someone else doesn’t.

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write about how much you totally LOVE me, and how long you’ve KNOWN me, and how much you LOVE me . . . This one’s from Mo, whose blog I stalk 63,000 times a day, even though I hardly ever leave comments. I have no idea how long I’ve known you, Mo – four years, maybe? I know that the first time I emailed you, it was to ask you where the hell Blue Collar Diva (remember her?) had gone, and you were like “How the fuck would I know?” Man. I wish I knew how BCD was doing… Anyway, I love the Mo. LOVE HER. Because she’s funny and gaseous and always cracks me up. Also, she is the mother of Frankie, who is Miz Poo’s love interest, though he’s not-so-secretly gay. Come out of the closet, Frankie! Also, Mo occasionally puts up kitty movies, and that right there makes her a gal after my very own heart. Mwah!
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I’m curious about your change of heart for Walmart. You used to love it, now you hate it-what gives? I did love Walmart. In fact, I’d visit Walmart a minimum of three times a week and go into withdrawals if it had been more than a few days since my last visit. But then Target came along, and here’s the thing – I began to notice that the freakin’ aisles at Walmart were always, always, always blocked by big piles of boxes that Walmart employees were supposed to be stocking the shelves with, only there were never any Walmart employees to be found. And I’d have to figure out a way to get my cart around the pile of boxes, when there’d invariably be someone blocking the way with their cart as they stood slack-jawed and drooling as they tried to decide which brand of marshmallow fluff would best suit their palate. At Target, on the other hand, the aisles are wide and never blocked with huge piles of boxes. If someone’s staring slack-jawed and drooling, I can always get my cart around them, and that makes me happy. Also, I can get sushi in the deli section. Occasionally I still need to visit Walmart if I need something Target doesn’t carry – for instance, there’s no craft section at Target – and every time I go to Walmart I find what I need and get the hell out of there as soon as possible. I think I’m probably turning into a yuppie snob.
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A question that is tearing my heart out- I have 3 new cats,9mons., 2 that are 6mons. (all adopted since June), they are horribly destroying our new home and furniture! Today I ordered a product called Soft Paws, claw covers. I am really struggling with the idea of de-clawing. As a fellow cat lover I would appreciate your thoughts. I hesitate to say this, because I know I’m inviting a shitstorm, but I am not anti declawing. I’ve known many cats who were declawed and didn’t appear to feel maimed or deformed (but then, who the hell knows what goes on in the mind of a cat?). Your cats are still young enough that you can train them to be comfortable with having you clip their claws every week or so. It’s fairly simple to cut their claws – similar to cutting fingernails, you just need to avoid cutting them too short. There are instructions here. I also highly recommend using a can of compressed air to let the cats know when they’re doing something they shouldn’t be. If you spray a blast of air at them every time they scratch the couch, it shouldn’t take but a few times for them to get the point. In the end, you really have to decide yourself whether you want to go the declawing route – like I said, I’m not anti-declawing, but it can cause problems with your cats and it can also be pretty expensive. I hope that helps.
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Also — have you ever forgotten to empty the tank on your Floormate? If yuo haven’t, I don’t advise it… Something DIES in there, I swear. I left it for a month once (the time it takes me between moppins, ‘cuz I am lazy) and I literally GAGGED emptying it. If I could have justified throwing it away I would have. I actually have never forgotten to empty the tank, thank god. I’m a weirdo who likes to see all the crap the Floormate sucked up, because it makes me feel like I did an excellent job of cleaning, and won’t need to do it again for weeks and weeks.
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But if you’re looking for topics, what’s going on with the spud lately? Does she plan on getting her drivers license? Who’s going to be the lucky one to take her out in the car? The spud is doing just fine – she’s enjoying school (some classes more than others – she just finished making a pillow in Family Dynamics) and enjoying being around her friends at school. She went to a Halloween party at a friend’s house and had a good time, and she’s going to be going to a Christmas party (I guess it’s a Christmas party) in December at another friend’s house. She does plan on getting her driver’s license, though not until she takes Driver’s Ed. at school next term, so maybe she’ll have her license by spring or early summer. Fred took her out driving several times earlier this year and she seemed to be getting the hang of it, though Fred had a hard time getting her to go anywhere near the speed limit. That’s good, though – better too slow than too fast! We decided to stop taking her out driving until after she’s taken Driver’s Ed., because we were worried that she’d pick up bad driving habits; I’d prefer her to learn all the basics from someone who teaches Driver’s Ed. for a living, and then practice everything she’s learned. Fred will be the one taking her out driving because I don’t think my nerves can handle it.
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You should write all about Fred’s car. LOL Fred’s car is a [censored] and he thought about getting it in [censored] or [censored], but ended up deciding that [censored] was the prettiest color. He got it at [censored] and got a really good deal on it. I had to drive it last weekend because my Jeep was being worked on, and it’s certainly got a lot more pep than the Jeep does. I enjoyed driving it. He’s had it for eight or nine months now and still loves it as much as he did when he first got it. In summary, I think he would definitely recommend the [censored] and if you’re in the market for a new vehicle, you should give a [censored] a test drive!
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Is that your kitty’s tongue sticking out or part of his lip? He looks so in love. That is actually NOT Spanky’s tongue sticking out in the picture from yesterday’s entry, it’s his lower lip!
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You can always write about the wonder that is your husband. Except, you know, for those things he doesn’t want you to write about. (Fred left that comment, by the way) Okay, here’s a Fred story. A few weeks ago he was trying to chase Spot down, because it was time for his (Spot’s) medicine. Spot ran under the bed, and Fred got down on the floor to try to sweet-talk him out from under the bed. “Oh my god!” Fred said. “There’s a dead mole under there!” “Whaaaaat?” I said. “I think it’s dead,” Fred said. He grabbed the can of compressed air and shot a brief blast of air under the bed. “Yeah, it’s not moving.” “Well, GROSS! How long has it been under there?” I said. “I don’t know…” Fred’s attention went back to getting Spot out from under the bed. He finally coaxed Spot out and picked him up to give him his medicine. I got down on the floor and looked under the bed. “Where is the mole?” I asked, looking around. “Uh…” Fred got back down on the floor on the other side of the bed. “Right there!” he said. “It’s right in front of you, don’t you see it?” “That?” I said. “Yeah, that.” “Babe,” I said, already grinning. “That’s a toy mouse.” “Oh,” he said, shrugging. “It looked just like a dead mole to me…” Heh. Okay, that’s it for today. I’ll address more questions tomorrow – if you have a question or a suggestion for something you want me to write about, leave a comment and I’ll see if I can oblige.
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A muscle by my right eye is very twitchy today, and it’s really annoying the hell out of me, especially since I’m trying to, y’know, SEE out of that eye damnit.
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This is the look Spanky gets when you rub his back; it’s a look of intense pleasure. But it kind of looks like he’s thinking about something and Dr. Phil is in a thought bubble over his head, doesn’t it?
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2004-11-17

by @ Wednesday, November 17th, 2004. Filed under Life

* * * Someone asked in my comments the other day if my Hoover Floormate is good and whether it does everything it promises. It absolutely does an awesome job – my only complaint is that when I use the stuff they sell specifically to use on your hardwood floors, I end up with streaks. I get by that by using ammonia in the machine, though it’s probably not good for the machine. I suppose I could go over the floor with a regular mop wet with ammonia and water once it’s dry, but why would I want to use the Floormate and then have to mop? It’s a dilemma, is what it is. I’ll tell you that I’m always amazed at how much cat hair I end up with in the machine. I usually do a half-hearted vacuuming of the floor before I start cleaning, even though you don’t have to, but when it comes time to empty the, uh, THINGY, there’s always a ton of cat hair. Also, the water is usually pretty nasty and brown. Probably if I did the floors more than once a month (oh, don’t look all horrified like that) it wouldn’t be so bad. Probably if I had to use a regular mop, I’d only do the floors about every other month, because I hate using a mop even more than I hate dusting.

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Y’know what? I still don’t have crap to write about; there’s just nothing going on around here these days. Tell you what – if you have something you want me to write about, leave a comment telling me what you want to hear about and I’ll do my best to oblige. Fair enough?
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This picture makes me giggle. That’s one happy Spanky-doo.
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2004-11-16

by @ Tuesday, November 16th, 2004. Filed under Life

When I was flying home from Maine in September, during my layover in Memphis I was checking out the gift shop, when I saw the cow bank. And then I saw the pig bank. I couldn’t decide which I liked more, so I got ’em both. They make me laugh every time I look at their expressions. I only wish they had a cat one, but sadly they don’t. You can get your own here. I do like the moose – I might have to get that one too, one of these days.

This is one of the t-shirts I got for Fred when I was in Myrtle Beach. He loves the obnoxious shirts, don’tchaknow.
I bought this book a few years ago, after Fred and I were on “Bullshit!” Laura Fraser was the other “expert” in the same show as us and when I was looking up information on her I read about the book and decided it sounded interesting. I finished it Sunday night, and it was definitely a good book; I highly recommend it. I’m sure I’ll be giving it away on the giveaway page in the next few weeks. I would keep it – and that’s saying a lot; I don’t keep many books – but I have a feeling I’d never read it again, and that would be a waste of a good book.
I got this shot glass when I was in Myrtle Beach, to add to my shot glass collection. I had a hard time finding a shot glass I liked, for some reason.
Not recently purchased, but this space heater is definitely worth the money I spent on it two years ago. The temperature outside had dropped quite a bit in the past few weeks, and I’ve been getting colder and colder, so I decided it was time. It’s cold in this room right now, but I am toasty warm with my heater at my feet.
They’ve put a little coffee drive-thru up around the corner (well, around several corners) and down the street, on a busy highway. To me, the building looks almost cartoonish, and it makes me almost wish I was a coffee drinker.
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Pet store kitty pics from Monday are up here.
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Hey, do y’all know where online you can (legally!) download music? iTunes doesn’t carry Tim McGraw or Wynonna Judd songs, both of which I’m hankering to listen to. I know there are download places other than iTunes, but I’ll be damned if I can find ’em.
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Da Poo, sitting on her pillow on my desk ten minutes ago.
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