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11-28-08

by @ Friday, November 28th, 2008. Filed under CAE, Crooked Acres, Fostering, Life

I am actually going to be traveling today, but because I love you, I did my usual Comment-Answering Extravaganza late last night.

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It’s that time of year! If you want a holiday card from Crooked Acres, go here and follow the directions. I will absolutely send cards to other countries. If you’d like to send me a card (definitely not required, but always appreciated), you can send it to PO Box 565, Madison, Alabama, 35758.

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Get yer calendars!!!

2009 Crooked Acres Calendar. ~~~~~ 2009 And3rson Kitties Calendar. ~~~ 2009 And3rson Foster Kitties Calendar.

(All calendars are marked one dollar above base price; all proceeds are donated to the local no-kill cat shelter I volunteer for.)

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I put makeup on exactly twice a year – once at Thanksgiving, once at Christmas – and I always feel compelled to document the result.

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Thanksgiving breakfast was FABULOUS. Fred made cinnamon rolls (and it pisses me off that he can do things like make cinnamon rolls with no recipe whatsoever and they come out SO DAMN GOOD), and the bacon and sausage was a big hit, and so was the sausage gravy. Fred went off to take a nap after everyone left, and I vegged out in front of the computer, then did laundry and packed so I wouldn’t have to get up this morning and do that.

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What it’s like when you walk into the new chicken yard. Note that the pigs get bitchy because I don’t have any food for them. They are spoiled ROTTEN.

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I must know: your thoughts on the True Blood season finale AND the Atlanta Housewives Reunion! (To the latter let me just say: OY.)

True Blood spoilers in this section.

I actually forgot that Rene was the bad guy – it’s been so long since I read the book that there’s a lot I just don’t remember. I still adore Sam, I am not surprised that Bill practically sacrificed himself to save Sookie, and I cannot stand that Maryann chick. Was she in the book? I don’t like her. And I can’t believe we have to wait ’til next Summer to see more of the series, damnit.

Atlanta Housewives Reunion spoilers in this section.

NeNe was just loaded for bear, wasn’t she? She was intense and confrontational, and I had a hard time even looking at the TV when she was yelling at Kim! I cracked UP when she rolled her eyes when Kim was talking about her album coming out in January (my guess: either the album will never come out, or it’ll be someone else’s voice!). Boy, you just always know where you stand with NeNe, don’t you? She doesn’t hesitate to tell you what she thinks! And the whole thing where Kim told NeNe that NeNe KNEW Kim was sick and NeNe saying “No, I didn’t, no one ever told me that!” – how good friends were they really if Kim never told NeNe that she had (as Lisa put it) “Cancer.” I find that whole “My doctor said it was 90% certain that I had cancer” and then just left it, and the interviewer (I can never remember his name) had to say “So, you don’t have cancer?” “No, but I have other things wrong that I’m not prepared to talk about” – I find that kind of suspect!

I was so surprised by Lisa just going OFF on Kim, I felt like it kind of came out of nowhere – not that Lisa didn’t have a reason to go off, it was just that she went from zero to 60 in no time flat. I had to rewind to make sure I hadn’t missed something that set her off!

DeShawn might be simple, but damn – she’s the most diplomatic of the bunch and she wasn’t going to give anyone any kind of ammunition to use against her! She was the only one who didn’t get caught up in the trash-talking (well, Sheree didn’t either, did she? I don’t remember that she did, maybe I’m just not remembering.)

Dwight needs to lose the long hair. He’s not a bad-looking man (though when you see him talking from the side, it’s apparent that he’s had some sort of chin plastic surgery!), but he looks so much better without that dreadful weave!

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Robyn, don’t shorten those curtains from the bottom. Cut off the top edge, and sew a new “pocket” for the curtain rod. Much easier than dealing with the scalloped hem. All you need to do is measure and sew a few straight lines on the machine!

The curtains were made of very sheer, gauzy material and I’m pretty sure they were beyond my sewing skills, I can’t imagine trying to sew that stuff!

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Robyn, do you drink tea? If you (or any readers!) do, you have to try a Tim Tam Slam. Bite off opposing corners (diagonal from each other), put one corner in the tea, your mouth on the other corner. Suck in the tea just until it hits your lips, and then very quickly put the entire thing in your mouth. You’ll thank me.

After Monday, when I ate so many Tim Tams I spent the evening clutching at my gut and bemoaning my stupidity, I think it’s best that Tim Tams be banned from the premises. I am breaking up with the Tim Tams (at least until I see the display at Target and packages of Tim Tams throw themselves in my cart, that is).

I don’t drink tea, but I’ve certainly heard about the Tim Tam Slam, and I’ve encouraged Fred to give it a try.

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Isn’t it funny, when Oreos first became available here Downunder people went crazy. Tim Tams were so … ho hum. Send me your address and I shall send you a TimTam package.

I can’t blame y’all for being crazy about Oreos – those things are damn good. I can see being ho-hum about them, though. If you can get them any ol’ time, there’s not the sense of urgency to have as many as you can cram in your mouth, right?

And thanks for offering to send me a package, but see above about how I’ve broken up with the Tim Tams. Those things are too damn good.

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For anyone wanting to learn more about all things homesteady — gardening, chickens, GOATS 😉 I highly recommend you head over to http://www.homesteadingtoday.com

I love that site – I don’t get around to visiting it very often, but I enjoy it when I do.

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The calendars are very cute!! But on a more serious note – do you think you can do anything about the Plain-Jane situation?

It’s only happenstance that Jane updated yesterday, you understand. Otherwise I’d be answering this question by saying that Jane’s gearing up to manage Holly’s campaign for the 2040 presidency and can’t be updating all the time. Apparently I’m wrong, and she can totally neglect the campaign to update her journal. That campaign’s not going to run itself, Jane!

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You know, Robyn, if you guys bought a dairy cow (or even a goat) you’d never have to go grocery shopping. You’d be making your own butter to cook your own eggs and potatoes. To eat with your own bacon. And put on your own veggies. ‘Course you’d have to grow some wheat so you could mill it and bake your own bread, too.

You know what annoys me? That there’s no way we could ever be completely free of having to visit the grocery store and purchase certain things, like flour, sugar… kitty litter, cat food. You know, the important things we can’t create ourselves (or at least not on 4 1/2 acres! We need more land, pronto.)

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Where did you find the big humidifier? it’s it free standing? Will you tell me if you like it? For some reason I have had the hardest time finding one. grrrr.

I ordered mine off the Gaiam site, this one.

(If that link doesn’t work, go to Gaiam.com and search on “humidifier”; it’s the whole-house humidifier) It’s more than I’d hoped to spend, but hopefully it’s quiet and will work for the whole house (at least the whole first floor!); I’ll definitely let you know if I like it; I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

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I went to Target specifically to get Tim Tams and couldn’t find any! Either I didn’t look close enough or they haven’t made their way to Arkansas yet.

I found them in two locations in our local Target – at the end of one of the cash registers, about halfway down the row of registers. They’re also, surprisingly enough, in the cookie aisle. Look closely, they kind of look like any other package of Pepperidge Farm cookies.

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Do any of your cats put things in their food and water bowls? My cat likes to get her puff balls, my pony tail holders, that little ring around the milk jug, a plastic ring she found of my daughters, etc. She also likes to bring stuff and put it in my bed. Last night I was blessed with a soaking wet puff ball and most mornings I wake up with her black and red ribbon in my bed.

I’ve had cats put toys and other stuff in their water – though none of our current cats do it much. It can be a way to help them figure out where the top of the water is. You can cut up a straw and float the pieces in the water to help them see where the water begins, and see if that helps.

Also, what is with the infernal licking? She’s an inside cat, terrified of the outdoors (guess I shouldn’t have named her “Bad Ass Ninja Cat”) and cleans herself constantly. Annoyingly constantly. Every time I pet her she has to clean herself and/or me. Licking, licking, licking, licking. GAH.

Some cats are just constant groomers – but keep an eye on her. Some cats groom as a nervous habit, and it can get to be a problem. If you see any bare spots or the skin underneath her fur seems inflamed, you might need to take a trip to the vet.

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The best humidifiers are from Crane’s on Amazon. I have the Hello Kitty one and the froggie and I heart them.

It’s possible I might have ordered the Crane’s pig humidifier. DAMN YOU, Astruc! I am weak in the face of cuteness.

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In this dream, there were a shortage of pigs on the planet and humans were being used as surrogates. Here I was, pregnant with piglets, and you happened to be the only qualified human/piglet midwife. So I made the 5 minute drive from Maryland to Alabama so that you could deliver my piglets.

Thought you might want to know… May be a new career for you!

Hmmm. I wonder how much schooling I’d need to become a human/ piglet midwife? It certainly sounds interesting – and baby piglets are so cute. I bet I could birth the HELL out of piglets with SCOOP HANDS.

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Well, well, well. You are so far ahead of the curve; this link is soooooo two weeks ago.

http://mightyhaus.com/archives/2008/11/bear-claw-scoops

Heh.

It’s hard to resist the SCOOP HANDS. Remember where you heard about ’em first!

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I thought Alabama was part of the humid south. Am I wrong?

It’s plenty humid here in the summer, but in the winter, the cold weather brings very dry air along with it. I’d guess that it’s rare to have much humidity in any location where the weather gets cold in the fall and winter.

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Why Robyn Has Caused Me to Need Therapy: Tim Tams sounded interesting. When I was at Target, I looked for them but couldn’t find them. So I just thought I’d go on Amazon and see if they had them, or what they looked like so I would know what I was looking for. I entered “Tim Tam” in the search box. This is what came up:

http://tinyurl.com/5kmckc

I think I have lost interest in Tim Tams.

What, you don’t want a meal of haggis and spotted dick with some Tim Tams to wash it down with?

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Mister Boogers is not snuggling with Newt. He is trying to push him out of the bed so he can have it all to himself. Newt is trying to hang on for dear life.

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Was Newt actually curled up IN that cat bed? If he was, Mister Boogers sure snuggled him right out of it. Newt doesn’t look at all comfortable. He’s going to wake up any minute and ask WTF?!!!

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Poor Newtles! How long did it take him to realize that most of him had been scootched out of the cat bed?

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Here’s how it went – Mister Boogers was laying in Fred’s desk chair, so Fred picked him up and put him on my desk (I was off watching TV, I think). Mister Boogers went over to the cat bed where Newt was sleeping, and just sat there and looked out the window for a long time. Eventually, he curled up and went to sleep, snuggled up to Newt. Newt apparently didn’t mind the snuggling, but over the course of about an hour Mister Boogers expanded to take up more and more of the cat bed, and Newt kept having to move to get comfortable, and as you can see, he ended up with more of him hanging out of the bed than there was of him IN the bed. He finally woke up and found a more hospitable place to sleep, which only reinforced to Mister Boogers that whatever Boogie wants, Boogie gets!

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Hello! Can you remind me (probably again since you’ve probably explained it but I don’t remember) how you guys ended up with Newt and Maxi? Didn’t they belong to some neighbors? Did the neighbors give them up or did you guys just slowly, over time, end up with the two cats? I remember them being outdoor-only and I remember the box that you guys made on the porch but I don’t remember when they made the switch to indoor/”your” cats.

Maxi and Newt were originally stray cats, kinda (though we found out later that Maxi actually belonged to the people who sold us this house – who just left her here. Grrrr!), and when Maxi showed up on our front porch with a litter of kittens, Fred talked to the lady two doors down, who told us that they (Maxi and Newt) had just kind of appeared one day. Since they didn’t belong to anyone, we asked the Challenger’s House (the shelter I volunteer for) manager if we could foster the kittens and adopt them out via Challenger’s House. She was okay with that, and the lady who lives two doors down said she’d take Newt and Maxi. We had them spayed and neutered, and the lady took them in, but they were so miserable being inside that that didn’t last long, and they started coming to our house pretty regularly. When the weather got cold, Fred was worried that they’d freeze to death, so he built them a (heated!) cat house. He started letting them in the house for a little while at a time, and then one night it was supposed to get really, really cold and he was worried about them, so we brought them in and kept them inside (in the foster kitten room) overnight. That kind of broke the dam as far as the cats were concerned, so we started letting them in and out whenever they wanted, and they just kind of became ours. They hang out at the lady’s house (two doors down) during the day sometimes, but I think we all pretty much agree that they belong to us! 🙂

Also, have you been watching “Ruby” on the Style Network? The show is about an overweight woman from Savannah who is struggling to lose weight because of the health-related issues with being almost 500 lbs. Just curious if you’ve seen it and what you think.

I watched the first episode of “Ruby” and enjoyed it, but I need to set up to tape the rest of them! The thing that struck me about the show was when Ruby went to her friend’s house for dinner, and her friend was making, I don’t even remember what it was, lard-coated lard deep-fried in lard or something (actually, I think it was the mac & cheese that caught my attention) and talked about how they’d go on diets together but they never lasted, and I don’t know. I understand not wanting to make her unhappy by denying her the foods she loves, but the friends aren’t helping, if they really are concerned about helping her lose the weight she wants to lose. I’m looking forward to seeing how the rest of the series goes.

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I do have a question for you: What is the spud doing for Thanksgiving? Has she ever missed a major holiday with you?

(I’m not asking to make you sad, and I hope the question doesn’t — I’ll be away from both my kids on Thanksgiving and just wondered how you felt about it).

The spud spent Thanksgiving with her father and stepmother, just the three of them for Thanksgiving dinner this year.

She’s actually lived in Rhode Island for about a year and a half now, so I didn’t see her for Thanksgiving last year, nor for Christmas (though I did see her in January, when I flew to Maine and then drove down to Rhode Island with my sister and mother to spend the day with her). I figure, I got to have her for each and every major holiday for the first 19 years of her life (except the Christmas when she was 10 or 11, which she spent in Rhode Island with her father), so I guess it’s her father’s turn for a few years!

We do text and talk pretty often, and while it’s certainly not the same as having her here, it definitely does help!

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FYI…Steve & Barry’s is going out of business, so if you want to stock up on t-shirts, now is the time to do it!

Damn, I wish I’d realized that when I was at the mall on Monday. I guess it’s another trip to the mall for me next week! Steve & Barry’s has THE best t-shirts, bar none.

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when you have kitteh duty at the pet store, you often mention how you have to go back to buy something because they’re not open. Well, how do you get in? Is someone there to let you in, or does Challenger’s House have a key? Or do volunteers break and enter on a daily basis?

We volunteers are like Santa. We just slide down the chimney!

Actually, there are pet store employees at the store from 6:30 or so onward (and actually, the little grooming place inside the store is open earlier than the store is), so if the door hasn’t been left unlocked (which it rarely is), we can ring the doorbell and an employee will come and let us in. Then we have to find a manager with the key to the cat room to let us in there. If I can’t find a manager (they’re usually busy doing something, and I can’t always tell who’s a manager and who isn’t), I throw myself on the mercy of one of the store employees, and they always offer to find a manager for me. The employees of the pet store are without a doubt the most helpful employees of just about any store I’ve been in!

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Bet you didn’t know your chickens can do this….

I did not! When we went out to visit with the chickens after breakfast/ dinner yesterday (we like to drag the relatives out to admire the chickens. They don’t seem to mind too much!) Fred picked up a chicken and demonstrated that very thing for his parents. I shoulda had the video camera with me!

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That is one fine stalker rooster! You must have more than one rooster I am thinking though. Do they get along or is there a head rooster?

We have two adult roosters right now (and one that’s just starting to try to crow, so he’s got a ways to go for he’s completely mature). Michelle seems to be the head rooster, and he and the golden rooster don’t seem to fight too much – the golden rooster seems to be fully aware of the fact that Michelle’s King Shit.

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Maybe next year you could raise your own turkey:-)

At this point, we’re actually planning on getting a handful of turkeys when we get our spring chicks, and definitely intend to provide next year’s Thanksgiving turkey!

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Hopefully the kittens won’t forget me while I’m gone. Fred’s under strict orders to give them extra love to make up for my absence!

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“Humans is tasty.”

More pictures over at Love & Hisses.

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Pretty Stinkerbelle. You can’t tell from this picture, but she really is a sweet thing.

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Previously
2007: So I’ve signed up for Holidailies, and I’ll be updating every day in December.
2006: Go! Shop! Buy!
2005: “Well, GODDAMN,” I said. “NOT NOW, I won’t! I was GOING to, but now that I know you’d be sitting there all horrified about me reclining my seat in front of your parents, all worried that they’d be thinking ‘Good christ, look at her over there, so fucking LAZY she can’t expend the ENERGY to sit upright!’, I won’t! I wouldn’t DREAM of reclining on my OWN couch in my OWN home, I would HATE to embarrass you!”
2004: No entry.
2003: Fred’s sister nodded. “That’s what I figured.”
2002: I forgot that teenagers are, on the whole (though yours may be different, or at least pulling the wool over your eyes) bone idle.
2001: McAfee rocks.
2000: Recent purchases.
1999: I informed him that there was no way he was getting out of taking me to the emergency room for this.

11-27-08

by @ Thursday, November 27th, 2008. Filed under Crooked Acres, Life, Picture Entries

It’s that time of year! If you want a holiday card from Crooked Acres, go here and follow the directions. I will absolutely send cards to other countries. If you’d like to send me a card (definitely not required, but always appreciated), you can send it to PO Box 565, Madison, Alabama, 35758.

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Get yer calendars!!!

2009 Crooked Acres Calendar. ~~~~~ 2009 And3rson Kitties Calendar. ~~~ 2009 And3rson Foster Kitties Calendar.

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2008-11-27
Thankful that someone will bring her inside and clean her behind. Also, that she’s not part of Thanksgiving dinner. (THIS year.)

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Thankful that the humans found this pumpkin pie had too much nutmeg in it, so the chickens benefited.

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Thankful for Reddi-Wip.

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(Check out the little dollop of whipped cream on her head.)

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Thankful for too-much-nutmeg pumpkin pie.

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Happy Thanksgiving, y’all!!!!

(And Happy Thursday to the rest of you!!!)

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Previously
2007: Oprah hates gum-chewing, did you know that?
2006: I’m a bit of a pyromaniac (really, who isn’t?), so my eyes twirled and glittered like Beavis’, and I had to restrain the urge to yell “Fire! Fire! Fire!”
2005: No entry.
2004: No entry.
2003: You were always what I needed. I thought you always would be.
2002: Then I snorted. “But *I* am not going to do ANYTHING with the turkey, ’cause it’s not MY job!”
2001: Thankyajeezus for hooking me up with a geek.
2000: I’m going crazy with wanting you, and crazier still to know that I can never have you.
1999: spud: Momma let her go into heat!

11-26-08

by @ Wednesday, November 26th, 2008. Filed under Crooked Acres, Fostering, Life, Picture Entries

Get yer calendars!!!

2009 Crooked Acres Calendar. ~~~~~ 2009 And3rson Kitties Calendar. ~~~ 2009 And3rson Foster Kitties Calendar.

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In my comments, the very suspicious Tyra said:

Nobody else is suspicious of that loaded sentence? “We stood around and Fred talked to the owner for quite a while, and we bought a few things before heading home.”

Whatjall buy? I think it was a potbelly, some ducks and Pyrenees.

We did not buy any potbellied pigs, nor any ducks, NOR any dogs. We bought Taste of the Wild cat food because I’m a lemming who jumps on anything new and shiny that I haven’t seen before. We also bought a “Fresh eggs” sign because Fred thinks his hand-lettered sign is cheesy. That’s about it, I think.

It seems like there might have been something else, though… Oh, right.

We might have bought a black Silkie, though. What? We didn’t want to just have ONE Silkie, and we thought that if we bought a black Silkie, we could name the white one Sookie and the black one Tara. (That’s a True Blood reference, for those not in the know.)

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Except the black Silkie isn’t really pure black; she’s more black with some reddish-brown accents. It’s pretty hard to get a good picture of her, because she’s a bit skittish around us. I suspect that when she realizes we’re the source of food, she’ll get over that right quick.

So, yeah. New chicken. Same ol’ same ol’.

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Okay, I need to get cleaning so I can flop down on the couch and watch some TV without feeling guilty or worrying about the cleaning that needs to be done. So here are some pictures from around Crooked Acres to tide you over.

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The little chickens are trying to figure out their places in the pecking order. Note here that the speckled chicken is pulling an impressive maneuver we like to call “umbrella neck.”

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This rooster likes to follow me around. He lurks and peers at me from behind the corner of the coop and then he acts all super-casual like “Me? Following you? Nope, not me!”

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Little rooster, keeping an eye on me.

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Lurking and peering. I think he might have a crush on me.

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This picture’s from a while ago – I think I took it about six weeks ago.

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This picture’s from yesterday. I can’t believe how fast the pigs grew between the two pictures. (Note please that my stalker rooster is RIGHT THERE, as usual.)

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Little Pig (only “little” in comparison to Big Pig) checks to see if I might have some food for her.

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“HEY! You has food?”

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“Food?”

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“Food?” (These last three pictures are from about a month ago.)

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“FINE, I’ll just eat grass.”

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As we use our eggs, I rinse the egg shells off and keep them in a bowl until the bowl is full. Then I run them through the food processor and give them to the chickens. Eating egg shells ensures that the chickens will lay eggs with nice thick shells instead of the thin-shelled eggs you get from the grocery store.

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(Yes, I cleaned the poo off that shell in the left of the food processor.)

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I supplement the ground egg shells with oyster shell, because we use a lot of eggs, but we also have a lot of chickens, and the shells we have aren’t enough to keep them in calcium every day. The bag of ground oyster shell is sitting in the wood shed for some reason, and it’s gotten kinda messy in there. The wood doesn’t care, though. It’s not picky.

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“IT IS THE LADY AND SHE HAS SOMETHING IN HER HANDS I THINK IT IS FOOD O HAPPY DAY!”

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I put the oyster shell/ egg shells in this little feeder, though you can just sprinkle it on the ground.

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Charlie (the white chicken to the left, with the twisted-up toes) thought it might be a good idea to try to perch on the side of the feeder. She knocked the feeder over, and the egg shells/ oyster shells went everywhere. Goddamn Charlie. Chickens are not known for their intelligenc. They’re not known for their pickiness either, luckily. They’re just as happy to eat the egg shell off the ground as from a feeder.

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Tommy is so rude. He goes into the kitten room, eats some of their food, digs through their toys, plays with some of their toys if he’s inclined to, and when they come over with the big hopeful eyes, wanting him to play with them, he gives them a dismissive look and ignores them as he ambles out of the room. Brat.

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More pics over at L&H.

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Tommy jumped on Joe Bob and bit his neck as soon as I snapped this picture. I don’t know what it is about Joe Bob that brings out Tommy’s aggressive asshole side but I’M NOT LIKING THE BEHAVIOR.

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Previously
2007: Amazing how that works.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.
2004: Just call me Grinchypoo.
2003: Survivor.
2002: If you think you can have too many smiley-face stickers, you are sadly mistaken.
2001: The phrase “anthrax in my pants” is FUCKING FUNNY when it’s spoken by a sixty-three year old woman.
2000: No entry.

11-25-08

by @ Tuesday, November 25th, 2008. Filed under Fostering, Life

Get yer calendars!!!

2009 Crooked Acres Calendar. ~~~~~ 2009 And3rson Kitties Calendar. ~~~ 2009 And3rson Foster Kitties Calendar.

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I left the house yesterday morning at 7:30ish, and didn’t get home ’til after 2:00. Places I went:

1. Wal-Mart to return the loud humidifier. I looked around for more pants, but the ones I bought the other day that are comfortable and I like? They don’t have them in medium, only small and XXXL. Ain’t it always the way?

2. Kohl’s, to return pants and some tops I bought last week. I tend to only stop at Kohl’s on my way to somewhere else, so I never really have time to spend a lot of time looking around. Yesterday, I was there for an hour and a half, and I feel like I definitely got plenty of looking-around (and buying) done. I found some jeans that seem to be comfortable, and some pants that are, basically, denim leggings and very very comfortable, so hopefully those’ll work out for me. We’ll see. I also got a new pair of shoes because the black clog-type shoes I bought early last Fall have gotten pretty banged up. I got… another pair of black clog-type shoes. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, is my motto.

3. Target to return some headphones and to browse. I did finally end up finding a humidifier (in the baby section), but I haven’t hooked it up yet, so I can’t testify as to whether it works well and is quiet. We shall see. I bought some new underwear, a nightgown, and some sweats for Fred. Also, Tim Tams. What? I didn’t want them to get lonely. They needed a good home. IN MAH BELLEH. It was almost 10:30 by the time I left Target.

4. The mall.

a. I went to Victoria’s Secret to stock up on shampoo (still loving the So Sexy shampoo despite the cheesiest name on the face of the earth). They always look SO disapproving when I’m not interested in getting an Angel Card. Why would I get a credit card I’d never use, I ask you? And yes, I know you get coupons. I never used the Victoria’s Secret coupons they sent when I did have an Angel Card (which I never used and subsequently canceled).

b. To JC Penney to look at their curtains (I found some I liked, but the ones I liked were not in stock. The ones I didn’t care for? Those were in stock all over the place. I must have popular taste in curtains or something.). I also couldn’t remember whether it was JC Penny or Sears that carries Land’s End clothing, so I looked all over JC Penney before I decided that it must be Sears that carries it. Duh.

c. To some big-ass shoe store to look at their shoes. I bought a second pair of black clog-type shoes. Because what if the first pair are not comfortable? Also, 75% off!

d. I walked very slowly by Steve & Barry’s, but didn’t go in. Because I don’t need any more t-shirts, and the Bitten line just really doesn’t work for me.

e. Walked very slowly by Yankee Candle, but didn’t go in. I’ve got ten thousand candles, and I need to start burning them before I buy more.

f. Dillard’s, on the off chance that they’d carry curtains. They did not. I bought socks.

g. Belk’s, on the off chance that they’d carry curtains. If they do, I didn’t find them. I bought nothing.

h. Sear’s, to look all over hell and creation before I finally found the teeny section of Land’s End clothing they carried. It took me about two minutes of looking to decide there was nothing there for me. Damnit.

5. Unhappy because I hadn’t found any curtains, I actually texted “Curtains, Huntsville, Alabama” to Google, who texted me back, in essence, “Wtf?” I knew there had to be SOME place to get curtains and I thought and thought and thought some more, and then I was like ::lightbulb:: “Linens ‘n Things!”, except that I can never quite figure out how to get into the Linens ‘n Things parking lot from the mall (it’s very complicated), so I decided to try Bed, Bath and Beyond instead, and wouldn’t you know it? Curtains for the downstairs bathroom, and curtains for the upstairs bathroom, both sets of curtains much less sheer so that tomorrow morning when I’m wandering around in the bathroom taking my shower, I’ll feel not quite so much on display. (I still plan to try making my own curtains once I get the sewing machine up and running, but these curtains will do for now.)

And then I stopped and got a salad for lunch, came home, hauled everything (but the humidifier, which was in a bulky box and my arms can only handle so many bags) inside. It’d been raining all day and was still raining, but when I opened the back door, half the cats went racing out into the back yard and then stayed out there ’til they were soaked, whereupon they came inside and rubbed their wet selves on me.

Bastards.

So that was my day. I rarely do that much shopping in a month, let alone in one day and so I slept like a baby last night!

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When I got home after being gone most of the day yesterday, Delmar let me know that he was most displeased with my absence. When I went upstairs, he followed me around and meowed at me. And meowed at me. And then he meowed some more. When I laid down on the bed, he curled up against me, gave me one last meow, and then allowed me to pet him.

I swear, I think he must have some Maine Coon cat in him – he is going to be a BIG cat, I can tell by the fact that he appears to be about twice the size of his sisters AND he’s got some really big paws. It’s a good thing he’s a sweet little snuggler at heart!

Progress made yesterday: when I walked into my room, Lem and Marion were curled up in a cat bed at the foot of the bed. I talked to them and then laid down on the bed, and they just watched me. Up until now, they’ve run off as soon as I get to the bed, then come back. This time, they decided to just stay and see what happened. And as soon as I laid down, they jumped out of the cat bed and came over for pets and kisses. There’s just nothing like having four warm little kittens flopped against you, purring to beat the band.

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More pics over at L&H.

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I never ever thought I’d see the day when Mister Boogers would willingly snuggle with Newt. And it wasn’t that Mister Boogers was asleep in the bed and then Newt came along for a snuggle. No, Newt was sound asleep in that bed, and Mister Boogers climbed into the bed and sat there and looked out the window, and the next thing I knew, they were curled up, both sound asleep. Mister Boogers must be mellowing.

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Previously
2007: I am vowing to be more organized in 2008.
2006: No entry.
2005: All I can guess is that with the holiday season coming on, our defenses are low, and we go a little crazy with the kitten love.
2004: No entry.
2003: I think our kitchen is cursed.
2002: Me, behind the wheel of a minivan? Watch out, Nashville!
2001: No entry.
2000: No entry.
1999: So, I got a kitten.

11-24-08

by @ Monday, November 24th, 2008. Filed under Fostering, Life

Saturday morning, Fred and I took a ride up to a feed store we discovered a few months ago when we were looking for medication for the chickens, who’d picked up some sort of upper respiratory infection (or something; I don’t recall the details, really). They sell chickens and goats and pot-bellied pigs at this feed store, so it’s worth the visit just to feed the chickens (and goats and pot-bellied pigs) some corn and be entertained by them for a while.

It just so happened that one of the pot-bellied pigs had given birth the day before, so we peeked in at the mother and babies, then went out back and fed the ducks and geese and little bitty goats. For a little while, I felt like I was living in one of Lisa‘s pictures.

They had two Great Pyrenees guarding their ducks and chickens and goats, and they both came over to be petted and look us over to make sure we posed no threat to the ducks and chickens and goats. I pointed out to Fred that Great Pyrenees dogs always look very worried, I guess that that’s because they know safeguarding the livestock is a very important job.

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We stood around and Fred talked to the owner for quite a while, and we bought a few things before heading home.

When we got home, I made breakfast and then Fred went out to work, and I started cleaning the house. We’re going to have company here for at least a few hours on Thursday, and so I decided that if I scrubbed the house over the weekend, all I’ll need to do Thursday morning before everyone arrives is to vacuum the downstairs and perhaps run a dust cloth around.

That took me the better part of the day, and then I got to spend a few hours digging through the 1700 foster kitten pics I’ve taken over the past year in an attempt to narrow them down to 12 for the calendar. This was QUITE the undertaking, and thank god I had Fred to help me pick out the final 12.

It’s my goal, over this next year, to go through the pictures before I save them to the “2009” folder and only save the calendar-worthy ones to that folder.

(I don’t hold out a lot of hope that that’s going to happen, though, so expect whining about this time next year regarding how damn many pictures I take.)

In any case, I got the pictures for all three calendars chosen and uploaded, and the calendars created, finishing just in time to go watch TV.

Saturday night, Fred watched Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, while I sat on the couch with my laptop in my lap and surfed the internet. At one point, a resounding CLANG! echoed through the house, originating in the dining room, and I looked down the hallway to see about a thousand cats running, panicked, down the hall before they scattered in all directions.

Turned out, someone had knocked over the fireplace screen in the dining room, and it scared the shit out of every cat in the house.

Sunday, I ran to town, did the recycling, and then went to Wal-Mart. I prefer to get our groceries at Publix in Madison, but since they’ve closed the road I would take that would lead me in a straight shot from Smallville to the Madison Publix, I find it too much of a pain in the ass to get there, so I’ve been going to Wal-Mart or Piggly Wiggly, neither of which even comes close to holding a candle to Publix.

I ended up going to Wal-Mart because I had some stuff to return, and because I wanted to look for a small humidifier. I’ve got a big humidifier coming in the mail, but we’re still going to need a small humidifer to humidify the top floor. I looked all over the damn store for the humidifiers before finding a small display of them over by the Christmas section.

I bought the humidifier, a few groceries, and a warm flannel jacket for Fred, and was home in no time flat.

Turns out the humidifier is too goddamn noisy, which of course I only found out once I’d gotten it set up and running, which meant I had to take it back apart, drain it, and it’ll have to dry for three days on the table before I can box the goddamn thing back up and return it to Wal-Mart.

Google tells me that what I want is an ultrasonic humidifier. Google is such a goddamn know-it-all.

The really good thing about the fact that we’re doing breakfast for Thanksgiving is that the only thing I needed to buy for Thursday was butter and a frozen pumpkin pie. Everything else, we already have on hand.

I spent the rest of Sunday puttering around, balancing the checkbook, doing laundry, canning the jam Fred made. The usual fun stuff.

Today, I’m going to the mall to try on more jeans, stock up on shampoo, and buy some warm socks. Maybe I’ll swing by Target to buy an ultrasonic humidifier while I’m at it. Google’s a know-it-all, but Google’s right an awful lot of the time. Bastard.

Hmm. Did I mention I’m stopping by Target? TIM TAMS, HERE I COME!!!!!

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After I vacuumed the entire house Saturday – including the foster kitten room – I went upstairs to hang out with the kittens and they were nowhere to be found.

There was, however, a small lump hiding under the bedspread on my bed. I patted it gently, and it chirruped at me. I laid down on the bed and talked to it, and it got excited, ran around in circles trying to remember how to get out from under the bedspread, then it stopped moving and made a sad sound. I lifted up the bedspread to see Delmar sitting there, and when he saw me, he got excited and ran over to me and snuggled up to me.

These kittens are so sweet they’re going to be the death of me, I swear.

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“Friends, Romans, countrycats, lend me your ears…”

More pics over at L&H.

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Mack Daddy Joe B. shows you how it’s DONE.

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Previously
2007: Questions, answered.
2006: No entry.
2005: I think I need to go eat some deviled eggs to assuage the pain.
2004: 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.
2003: “Purring? You don’t like the sound of them purring?”
2002: No entry.
2001: No entry.
2000: Just a little more knowledge o’ Robyn y’all can add to your notes.
1999: No entry.

11/21/08

by @ Friday, November 21st, 2008. Filed under CAE, Fostering, Life

Australians, I have a bone to pick with you. We’re friends, right? I tell you my problems, you tell me yours (in that adorable accent) and then we bond and tell each other that we’ve lost too much weight and those jeans make your ass look fabulous.

So then, why. Why. WHY did none of you share with me the magically tasty Tim Tams? Did you want them all for yourselves?

I can’t say that I blame you if you were saving them all for yourselves, actually.

So I am peeved at you, Australians, and the only way I can see forgiving you this breach of friendship is if you send me a year’s supply of Tim Tams, immediately.

Seriously, though. I saw the packages of Tim Tams at Target yesterday and I was all “Um, okay. I’ve heard of these. I wonder if they’re good.” and I was hungry so I bought a pack of the chocolate creme Tim Tams and brought them home, and after lunch I was looking for something sweet to finish off the lunch experience and I spotted the Tim Tams, and I opened the pack and ate one and the birds sang and the cats purred and my life was complete.

You complete me, Tim Tams.

I think it’s probably a lucky thing that Target is a half hour drive away, so I can’t just run to the store to buy some.

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A small section about Survivor. Don’t read this if you haven’t seen last night’s show!

I have to admit that I haven’t been that into this season of Survivor, but that blind-side last night, where Randy handed over what he was POSITIVE was the immunity idol and then smirked, only to get his ass voted off the island? PERFECTION. I actually did a Roscoe P. Coltrane chortle when the voting was going on.

Does anyone else think that Matty bears a striking resemblance to Leonardo DiCaprio? And when he does that dorky-ass laugh, he strongly resembles Leonardo DiCaprio in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape.

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Out of curiosity, do you not like the mini-blinds? You can hang the curtains over the blinds, insuring your privacy, but still covering up the mini blinds.

I didn’t really like them in the kitchen because they were hard to clean (although, y’know, it’s not like I tried to clean them all that often) and the ones in the stairwell and bathrooms looked horrible because of the ladybug (or I guess I should say “Asian Lady Beetle”) invasion of a few weeks ago. I like the fact that the curtains in the bathrooms and stairwell let in the light without my having to open them every morning and close them every night.

The saga of the miniblinds in the kitchen goes as follows: I took down the miniblinds and I took down the miniblind hardware, breaking the bracket in the process because I’m a great big klutz. Then I put up the new curtains, and lo and behold, guess what? When you put curtains like that on the windows? You can’t see through them, and apparently I REALLY like to look out the window when I’m doing dishes. DUH. What would be the point of windows in the kitchen otherwise, I ask you? So I thought about pulling the curtains to the side but they looked like crap. Then I thought about putting shades in the windows, but was concerned – because of the molding on the side of the window frame – that they would stick out at the top. Which isn’t a problem, except that there’s a limited amount of space between the window frame and the light. So Fred said, “Hey. If it will SHUT YOU THE FUCK UP, howsabout I stop and get the nice blinds (plantation-style) that we’ve been replacing the miniblinds with, and we put those there instead?”

And I was so frustrated that I just wanted it to all go away, so I agreed and then when Fred started to put up the plantation blinds in the kitchen, he said “Huh. That’s not going to work, they stick out too far at the top, you can’t put your favorite rooster valances back up if we have plantation blinds.” and I threw myself off the nearest cliff and I whined and moaned and threw some cats and then I said “WHAT DO YOU SUGGEST?” and he said “These plantation blinds don’t have to go in these windows. Don’t we have some miniblinds in some windows that we haven’t replaced yet?” and I remembered that there were two windows in the front room that still had miniblinds in them, so I told him that, and in pretty short order he’d put the plantation blinds in the front room and the miniblinds in the kitchen windows, and then he told me to calm the fuck down and stop that shit, and so I have.

(For the moment.)

My next project will be to actually get my ass in gear and go around and shorten all the blinds in the house to the correct length so that they look decent. FUN!

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Don’t forget to include your take on last night’s Real Housewives of Atlanta episode.
I can’t wait to see the reunion show next week!

My bullet points on this week’s Real Housewives:

1. Kim and the smoking and her kids begging her to stop, oy. The more I see of Kim, the more I just realllly don’t like her.

2. Did it seem to anyone else that that call from Dallas Austin was him laying the groundwork for disappearing and never answering another call from her again?

3. I like NeNe, but I really think she’s probably best taken in small doses in real life; I bet she gets overwhelming pretty rapidly. Her friend – whose name I cannot remember, is it Dwight? – LOVES to use the word “Dreadful”, doesn’t he? He did it so many times during their conversation it made me laugh.

4. I think DeShawn’s got a good heart, but she really strikes me as not the sharpest knife in the drawer. And the part of the show, after she and her husband were playing basketball, when she was asking him about his future plans and he looked at her like “Why are you acting like you don’t know this?” made me laugh out loud.

5. Sheree strikes me as truly genuine when she’s talking about her clothing line and how much she loves having something of her own, but good god, girlfriend does NOT know what she’s doing, does she?

6. I love Lisa, though I think her insistence on making Sheree and Kim interact with NeNe strikes me as, I don’t know, pushy maybe? Why can’t it be enough that they’re civil to each other, why must they have heartfelt interactions?

This show ended on such an upbeat we’ve-overcome-our-differences note that I am DYING to know what happened between the season finale and the reunion show. I hope it’s not one of those cases where they hype the hell out of it and then it turns out to be NOTHING.

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I think what you would have done if you’d seen the men go to steal your chickens is run to get the camera! That way you’d have photographic evidence against them AND you could blog about it. Duh – Fred is so silly sometimes.

I suspect you’re right!!!

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Um, possibly you have written about this (I think you have and that makes me a Total Skimmer, tm Jane. Or Tessie?) but have you considered getting a cow? How about ducks?

We did talk about getting ducks before we had the pond filled in, but haven’t really talked about it since. We talked about getting a cow, too, but with the chickens taking up the back forty, I don’t know that we’ve got the room. We could probably fit a mini cow back there, though!

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I gots to say something. I went to OTP [Old Time Pottery] on Wednesday afternoon because of your entry (and because I happened to be in the ‘hood.) THEY HAVE POTTERY. Lots of vases near the lamps, especially. So now you can go at your will, because it doesn’t violate Fred’s rule.

They must keep the pottery in the one section of the store I haven’t been through, then!

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Have you thought of getting a Wii? Instead of planting my sorry, lazy ass on the couch after dinner, I’ve been making my daughter play Wii Sports and Wii Fit with me. I even got my husband to do the advanced step aerobics on Wii Fit last night and I must say that the laugh I got out of it made the game worth every penny! There are also some other pretty fun games to play–Mario Galaxy is AWESOME and was a game that the three of us played together. The Xbox 360 is fun too, though.

We’ve talked about it, but I don’t know how much we’d use it. I’m not really one for playing games, haven’t been since I kicked Super Mario Brothers’ ASS back in the early 90s.

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I found this site on another blog this morning and thought, who would like this? Robyn! So, have fun! Some of the games are really hard!

That site is just too cute!

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Have you thought of re-naming Crooked Acres to the Chicken Ranch? Hee! Ask Fred to ‘splain it to you.

Fred doesn’t need to explain what the Chicken Ranch is to me, I already knew!

The idea of changing the name to The Chicken Ranch does amuse me, because if any Smallville residents pounded on the door, all appalled, I could claim ignorance and then ask how they knew the name of a brothel in Nevada.

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In regards to pantry moths…after buying flour or any grain like that I put it in a bag and pop it into the freezer for 24 hours. It’s supposed to kill anything that’s in there. Generally, there’s eggs in most grains so that’s the quickest way to deal with that. If you get them throwing out the items that they’re in doesn’t always do the trick. I cleaned out my cabinets several times. Finally I got so disgusted I took everything out of the cabinets and sprayed them liberally with a bleach spray (clorox cleanup or something like that) and wiped them all down and let me them dry overnight. I haven’t had the little visitors back. Just a couple of suggestions.

Do you find that your flour gets kind of lumpy after you keep it in the freezer? I have to sift my flour before I use it, and I’ve never needed to do that before; and the only difference is that I froze my flour before putting it in the canister.

Would you believe that I no sooner posted my entry last Friday, than I went to the pantry to see if we had quick-cooking oatmeal and found that it was SOLID pantry flies and crawling with the worms? The chickens sure did enjoy it when I tossed it to them.

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FYI-I was nosing about Target tonight & they had teeny Santa hats in with the dog apparel. Maybe that would work for the cats.

We do have pet-size Santa hats – I was looking for tiny ones, like such:

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because tiny hats are FUNNY AS SHIT on cats. Unfortunately, that tiny hat (which I cut off an ornament) refused to stay atop the kitty heads long enough for a really good picture, so our Christmas cards this year don’t include tiny Santa hats.

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I keep my chocolate chips in the freezer. I don’t use them very often, and you can just toss them right into whatever while frozen.

I am embarrassed to admit that that NEVER occurred to me. I’ve moved the chocolate chips to the freezer, and I’m sure the pantry moths are crying bitterly right now because the Ghiardelli milk chocolate chips are no longer available to them. Take THAT, pantry moths!

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Meh.

I still have the Tubby t-shirt with that on the back. It’s my favorite Sunday afternoon, movie watching, popcorn eating, sitting on the couch and being lazy shirt.

Though the Tubby t-shirts with “meh” on the back aren’t available anymore (CafePress started charging an additional $3 to have printing on the backs of shirts), you can still get Tubby swag (with the “Meh” on the front) here. (All items are marked up by $1; all proceeds go to the no-kill cat shelter I volunteer for.)

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Jewelry armoire is brilliant!! Anyone who wants one should wait until after Christmas; last year Target clearanced out the $100+ armoires for $25….score….I bought 3 (2 for me and one for my daughter…I keep my small purses, extra wallet, and so on in addition to jewelry, in them).

Keep that in mind, y’all! We’ve had our armoire for almost a week, and I can report that it’s working out even better than I’d hoped. Nothing has accumulated on top of it (except for the occasional cat), and I love that!

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So, I know you and Fred have read a ton of books on farming/canning/raising animals/gardening/etc. We’re making a move (sudden, and completely unexpected) from Columbia, MO to a tiny town in Michigan to live with my brother and his family on a small farm. You and Fred have inspired wifelet and I to raise chickens, garden, etc. So, can you list some books that have helped you out? Or if you’ve put them in entries that are easy to find, I’d even be good with links. We’re overwhelmed, but excited! Thanks for any help!

The absolute hands-down favorite book on this subject (for both Fred and I) is Carla Emory’s Encyclopedia to Country Living. It’s a huge book and covers just about any topic you can think of. It’s a no-nonsense guide to gardening, raising animals, even slaughtering them if it comes down to it. It’s so interesting that if what we’re watching on TV isn’t interesting me, I’ll get the book out and open it to random pages and just read about whatever.

Fred really likes Storey’s Basic Country Skills and Storey’s Guide to Raising Chickens – I haven’t really looked at them, but he swears by them.

We do have more books than that, but honestly I don’t think we’ve even bothered to open any but the Carla Emory and Storey books.

Fred also swears by the Backyard Chickens message board, there are a lot of people who frequent that board, and they’re good about helping out the “newbies.”

(Warning: chickens are absolutely addictive!)

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Robyn in a police car? Yeah, the first thing that came to mind was the accidental indecent exposure that several other people had thought of. But then I saw this video of a cat on a Roomba, and I had visions of one of the And3rson kitties taking a joy ride that got out of control, and… well… you can just imagine.

I dearly wish I could get one of our cats to ride the Roomba around. Instead, they all give the Roomba a wide berth.

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don’t forget to make hashbrown casserole for your thanksgiving brunch!

Fred’s parents will be bringing either hashbrown or grits casserole. I actually haven’t made hashbrown casserole in ages. I’m kind of having a craving for it, now!

My sister recently made the hashbrown casserole and added ham to it so she could have it as a main dish; apparently it was pretty good!

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Do your cats ever try to fool you into feeding them more than the regular times? Our dog has discovered if she acts excited and makes enthusiastic false charges at the door to the garage one of us will assume she hasn’t been fed yet. We call it her Jedi Dog Trick. “You have not yet fed the dog. You will now feed the dog.”

Now that we’ve moved Snackin! Time! back to 5:00 (that’s when it gets dark, and it’s the easiest way to get them in the house so I can shut them in for the night), the cats still think that they should have their snack when we get our evening snacks. They run into the kitchen, mill around and stare at me with their big, hopeful eyes, and ignore my yelling “YOU ALREADY HAD YOUR SNACK!” at them. They haven’t convinced me yet that they should get another snack, but hope springs eternal i the hearts of the Crooked Acres Gang.

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You could just shorten the curtain for the downstairs bathroom.

I can’t, actually – it has a scalloped hem, and I’m not that skilled. Also, the material is that sheer, gauzy stuff, and the idea of trying to hem it when I’m sewing-impaired gives me a virtual migraine.

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Can you catch a field mouse with scoop hands?

You can catch a field mouse with SCOOP HANDS, but you cannot keep the field mouse with SCOOP HANDS. SCOOP HANDS are kind of big and klutzy and not made for close work. SCOOP HANDS are good for herding field mice toward a big, empty container, though.

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Okra is from the Devil himself. I cannot bring myself to eat HAIRY vegetables. UGH.

I do like fried okra – or oven-fried – but other than that, I’m not crazy about it. It’s a good toy for cats, though. I recently found a dried okra pod that Kara’s kittens kicked into my closet, and Delmar played with it for a long time before he lost it somewhere.

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I have a Friday question for you! Yes, its the lady that wondered why you didn’t have a long-haired cat. Now I know the truth, and it’s name is HairBall. Are any of your cats sufferers? Do you treat any of them for it? Do you groom any of the kitties? Thanks 🙂 Now get a long haired cat so I can ask you more questions. (hee)

Every once in a while one of the cats has an issue with hair balls. We give them some Laxatone, and that generally takes care of it pretty quickly.

I’ve mentioned the Furminator before, right? That thing is MAGIC. It removes loose fur like you wouldn’t believe, and it does it fast. I highly recommend you give it a try. I don’t use it on the cats as often as I should, but it does an amazing job on them. I prefer to use it on them outside, because fur tends to get all over the place when you use it.

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Hey! You remember these kittens?

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They’re all grown up, and I got to see them yesterday!

See current pictures of them over at Love & Hisses. They’ve grown up to be such pretty little monkeys. And though the pictures won’t show it, I have to say that Dora has got the LONGEST tail I’ve ever seen on a cat. I must have mentioned that about a hundred times when I was visiting, but it was cracking me up.

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The kittens are starting to come downstairs more and more often. When I was watching TV last night, I glanced down the hallway and all four of them were sitting on the bottom step, watching Stinkerbelle watch them. They don’t stay downstairs for long – and it makes them nervous if I get up and move around while they’re downstairs – but this is a big step for them.

Lem’s the biggest explorer of the bunch. He was the first to come all the way downstairs, I see him running around downstairs more often than the others, and I expect he’ll be the first one to come hang out with us while we watch TV in the evening.

This is just the biggest bunch of lovebugs. Delmar, especially, would like me to spend my entire life laying on the bed with him, telling him how pretty he is, and petting him.

I need to get a humidifier. The dry air in the house is making it very staticky, and the kittens don’t appreciate trying to sniff my hand and getting zapped in the nose for their trouble.

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“Really? You think you wanna mess with me?”

More pictures over at L&H.

Also, pet store kitty pics over at L&H.

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2008-11-20 (7)
Tommy hangs out on the back of Fred’s chair, and is clearly thrilled about it.

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Previously
2007: Go, Super Shopper, go!
2006: Right. Because six is perfectly normal, but SEVEN would be lunacy.
2005: Every time I contemplate reading those books, I get a “Good god, I DON’T WANNA!” sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach, which to me is a sign that, y’know, I DON’T WANNA and YOU CAN’T MAKE ME.
2004: No entry.
2003: No entry.
2002: Fuck him, too.
2001: It don’t get any better than that, nosir.
2000: I see enough nasty stuff in my life.
1999: No entry.

11-20-08

by @ Thursday, November 20th, 2008. Filed under Life

I couldn’t connect to the internet for a good part of the morning yesterday, which is why y’all got a picture of Miz Poo and a “see ya!” from me. Thank god I can post to Bitchypoo via Flickr.

Flickr is the BOMB.

(Sue, the reason there was no hat on Miz Poo is ’cause I didn’t think of it, surprisingly enough. I was midst temper tantrum (nothing drives me crazy like not being able to connect to the internet when I’ve got SHIT TO DO), so I just snapped a quick picture of the nearest thing. Miz Poo is almost always the nearest thing. She lurves her Momma!)

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Thanks, you guys, for your jeans suggestions! I’ve made note of them all, and will check them out when I get a chance.

I did go to Wal-Mart to buy a belt and while I was there I tried on about ten pairs of jeans and none of them worked for me. I found a belt and was about to leave, when I happened by the display of men’s jeans and decided to try them on.

Turns out the Wrangler Regular Fit 34×29 jeans fit pretty well so I bought them, then when I actually started to wear them yesterday, I found them uncomfortable. That’s my problem, you see – thinking jeans are perfectly comfortable in the store, but finding them not so when I actually try wearing them at home.

(Robin, you’re probably correct that I should invest in a decent belt and not the $7.99 special from Wal-Mart. I’ll add that to my mental to-do list!)

Also, I should note here that the only reason I bought low-rise jeans is because after surgery, when I tried on the Lee Rider jeans I had in the drawer, they fit okay at the waist, but the crotch hung down halfway to my knees and that was not a good look for me, so I thought that low-rise might be what I need. “Mom” jeans are okay with me, I’m no fashion plate, believe me.

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While I was in Wal-Mart, I bought curtain rods for the upstairs and downstairs bathrooms and the window in the stairwell. I purchased curtains online for all three of those windows, the curtains came Monday, and I wanted to get them put up. There have been miniblinds in all three windows, and I decided they’d look better with curtains (cafe curtains in the bathrooms and a sheer panel in the stairwell) to provide privacy, but allow light in. None of those windows are in locations where someone could stand and look in the window (at least, not without a ladder), so the curtains I got – these for the downstairs bathroom and stairwell and these for the upstairs bathroom – will work well, I think. If not, well, I’ll send ’em back and find other curtains to try.

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Downstairs bathroom. I can see that the curtains are too long; I need to find something better (and less sheer). These’ll do for now. (Miniblinds hardware at the top of the window still needs to be removed.)

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Stairwell window.

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Close up of the flowers on the bathroom and stairwell curtains. The flowers ended up being larger than I expected, but I still like the curtains quite a bit.

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Upstairs bathroom.

I got these for the kitchen window (in gold) so I could take down the miniblinds. Haven’t put those up yet, we’ll see how that goes.

I actually wanted curtains with small purple flowers for the upstairs bathroom, but couldn’t find any I like. If I ever get my sewing machine up and running (before the end of the year, I swear it!), I might think about making my own curtains. How hard can it be?

(Famous last words!)

I have to say that I think the windows and doors in the computer room would look best with Roman Shades, but (a) Ugh! SO EXPENSIVE! and (b) I think Fred’s patience is rapidly running out with me and the goddamn blinds/ shades/ curtains dithering.

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Y’all cracked me up with your answers to the meme yesterday! Anyone who doesn’t read the comments, you should go back and check them out, I have some funny damn readers.

(Elayne saying that I’d break in and rescue an abused animal and then leave a stern note shaming the owners for their behavior? I am sad to say that I can actually see me doing that!)

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Yesterday, late morning, as I was about to get up and go make another batch of cookies for the pigs (this time I tossed in a handful of sliced okra so Fred and I wouldn’t get into them. When I crave a chocolate chip cookie and think of stealing one from the pigs, you better believe the idea of getting a slice of okra in my chocolate chip cookies keeps me the hell AWAY. I even made sure to mix the cookie dough extra good after I added the okra to spread that slimy okra taste around. Yum?) I glanced out the window into the back yard.

Tommy was closely paying attention to something that was going, so I got closer to the window and looked out. Turns out Newt was on the outside of the fence smacking at a field mouse, the field mouse would run through the fence, Tommy would smack at it, it’d run back through the fence toward Newt, and so on. As I watched, the field mouse ran toward Tommy, who smacked it and then leaned down to sniff at it.

As Tommy’s nose got close to the mouse, the mouse snapped at Tommy, and Tommy – clearly not expecting the mouse to do anything but run away from him – levitated three feet in the air and puffed up to twice his size.

I don’t know the last time I’ve laughed so hard.

I grabbed an empty litter bucket, went out and caught the mouse, locked Newt inside, and let the mouse go in the woods on the other side of the chicken yard. Never had to touch the mouse with my own hands, thank god.

The mice sure do seem to be slow this time of year. Shouldn’t they be off hibernating or something?

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2008-11-19 (7)
I know that it looks like I’m sticking my thumb in Delmar’s mouth and he’s gagging, but what’s REALLY happening here is that Delmar is biting my thumb with his sharp little teeth and I’m screaming in pain. Kittens have VERY sharp little teeth, in case you wondered.

More pics over at L&H.

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2008-11-19 (5)
Sugarbutt illustrates that redheads can indeed wear pink and look fabulous while doing so.

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Previously
2007: He stood, stretched, said “Why yes, I do believe I AM ready to leave this room, thx,” and ran off down the hallway.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.
2004: Questions answered.
2003: Pictures.
2002: Just another example of my weirdness.
2001: God in heaven, has the WORLD GONE NUTS?
2000: “Oh, you’re giving us the COT free of charge? Well, let me do a friggin’ happy dance for that!”
1999: “Lookit them buildings, Fray-uhd! They’s so TALL! And look! A homeless person. Give him money, Fred! Give him money!”

11-19-08_0821.jpeg

by @ Wednesday, November 19th, 2008. Filed under Life


11-19-08_0821.jpeg, originally uploaded by RobynAnderson.

T-Mobile

Can’t connect to the internet, new entry will have to wait ’til tomorrow. Have a good one!

11-18-08

by @ Tuesday, November 18th, 2008. Filed under Life

I’ve seen this meme all over LiveJournal. In the comments, answer this question:

“If you saw me in a police car, what would you think I got arrested for?”

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Holy god in heaven, I take A LOT of freakin’ pictures. All year long, I copy all the pictures I take of our cats and foster kittens into a folder called “2008.” The idea is that in November I can quickly go through the pictures and pick out the best of the best and make Foster Kitties calendars and And3rson Kitties calendars for 2009, and put the link up here and anyone who’s interested can order them from Cafepress.

We never sell a lot of calendars – just a handful – but I have a few people who buy them faithfully every year and it’s worth the effort to make them happy, and I always buy one of each to have here, and I charge $1 over the base price and donate the money I make to the shelter I volunteer for. It’s win-win!

So yesterday I opened the “2008” folder to start separating pictures into “And3rson kitties” and “foster kitties” folders, and do you want to know how many pictures I took last year of cats (and pigs and chickens)?

Almost 3,000.

Took me most of the afternoon to separate the pictures into the two folders, and that’s just the beginning – now I have to go through and delete all the ones that won’t work for calendar pictures, and then make Fred help me narrow them down to the final choices.

I’m not complaining, though – it was nice to see the pictures I’ve taken over the past year, and my GOD Kara’s babies were adorable. I saw a picture of the Rock Star as a baby, and squealed, she was so freakin’ cute.

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The calendars should be available the middle of next week, hopefully. Maybe before then!

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Those of you who suggested that I buy a belt in yesterday’s comments, thanks for the suggestion! I’m embarrassed to admit that it never occurred to me, and I might as well go ahead and give it a try – if it works for me, I’m going to feel like an idiot. (Luckily, that’s a familiar feeling for me. Ha!)

Shelly suggested some jeans from LL Bean. Since I have a gift card from there, I’m going to give them a try. Teri C. suggested those jeans that have elastic inserts at the back – another thing I never thought of, but seems so obvious! MichelleB mentioned Old Navy, and I’ve actually been looking at their web site over the past few days, thinking about getting some of their hoodies because I’m a hood rat this year (HAR HAR, that joke courtesy of Fred) and their hoodies are inexpensive. I don’t think I’ve ever bought anything from Old Navy, but it might be time to start. They also have some simple cotton pants I’ve been looking at that I might find comfortable.

The issue with my body is that I literally have NO FUCKING WAIST, every pair of pants I wear slide down my body ’til they hit my butt, which stops them from going any further. And my entire life I’ve been used to wearing my pants around my belly button, but that’s just too damn high for me (apparently my belly button was lower before I had my lower body lift), and so it very well might be a drawn-out process before I find something that works for me. My waist measures 35 inches (while I’d love it to measure something more like 28 inches, that’s just not the way I’m made) and my hips measure 39 inches, and those four inches? All ass. If my butt were flat, I can guarantee you that my hips would measure exactly the same as my waist. If you look at me straight-on, I have no waist indentation at all. It’s kind of frustrating, but I guess not everyone’s meant to have an hourglass shape.

I was going to spend the day shopping today, but due to the onset of PMS rage, I think it’s best that I spend as little time in public as possible. Maybe I’ll just run up to Wal-Mart and buy a belt and go from there.

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Over the weekend, I finally got a picture to use for the holiday cards I’ll be sending out this year, and got the cards ordered.

(Don’t send me your name and address just yet – I don’t do that sort of thing ’til AFTER Thanksgiving! I refuse to!)

I also got someone to volunteer to cover for me at the pet store on Thanksgiving morning. I was a little worried about that, to be honest, because I didn’t figure anyone would want to do it, but not ten minutes after I sent out an email, someone offered to cover for me.

We’re not doing the usual Thanksgiving this year. Fred’s sister and her husband are going to be in France (he’s from France, so they go back and visit when they can) and it’s his father and stepmother’s turn to have Thanksgiving with us (his parents alternate years), so Fred invited his niece and her husband, and his nephew and his fiancee to have Thanksgiving with us. His niece and her husband are scheduled to have Thanksgiving dinner with her father’s mother a little after noon and his nephew is working, so Fred suggested we do breakfast rather than the usual turkey-and-stuffing meal and eat mid-morning, and everyone was up for that, so it’ll be us, his parents, his niece and her husband for a Crooked Acres breakfast.

His father is very sensitive to the nitrates in bacon, so he’s looking forward to eating fresh bacon that’ll be cooked with nothing but salt and pepper. We’re going to have sausage, scrambled eggs, of course, and I’m sure biscuits and gravy.

I think I went off-topic there. All I meant to say is that I’ve been putting off asking if anyone would be willing to cover for me at the pet store because since we’ll be eating early, there was no way I’d make it into Huntsville, clean cages, and get home before everyone showed up. It was really nice to have that taken care of so quickly!

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I will tell you what – when you are cold, there’s nothing that warms you up better than to have four mid-sized kittens pile atop you and fall asleep. I don’t know what the average cat temperature runs, but I’m guessing somewhere in the two-hundred-degree range. I was SO cold yesterday morning that I finally went upstairs and laid down on the bed and all four cats piled around me, and it was like having four furnaces turned on high then piled on and around me, and I was toasty warm in no time at all.

If I could knit, I’d knit a duster-type coat with big pockets in it, so I could load a cat or kitten into each pocket and they could keep me warm all winter long!

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Lem in the back, Marion in the front. I don’t know why, but I just adore this picture.

More pics over at L&H.

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2008-11-18 (7)
::fume::

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Previously
2007: Brudderly love.
2006: No entry.
2005: Apparently I’ve got the Jaws of Doom.
2004: Reader questions.
2003: Of course, my immediate response is “Are you on drugs???”
2002: I think that everyone there had a little cartoon question mark over their head, ’cause I sure as shit did.
2001: No entry.
2000: No entry.
1999: No entry.

11-17-08

by @ Monday, November 17th, 2008. Filed under Fostering, Life

So, the low-rise size 8 jeans I got at Target last week? Not so much working out for me. I put them on and they were okay, even comfortable. But the instant I did anything at all (in this case, bending over to scoop out the litter box), they rode halfway down my ass.

The jeans are going back, and one day this week I’ll go on another shopping mission to find jeans that work for me. The mid-rise Lee jeans I bought at Kohl’s were mostly comfortable, but I spent too much time pulling them up, so they’re going back, too.

Maybe I’m just not meant to wear jeans. But the Land’s End cotton pants I’ve been wearing forever are too big for me (I must yank up my pants 400 times a day), and of course when I went to order them in a smaller size, they no longer carry them.

Ain’t it always the way?

Fred snorted “You should just start wearing overalls!”

Don’t think I’m not tempted!

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Saturday morning dawned cold and rainy and just all-around crappy. While Fred went out to do a few things that couldn’t wait (run chicken wire along the outside of the pig yard fence, because the littlest chickens were going from the chicken yard to the pig yard, and from the pig yard into the woods alongside the pig yard, and we were concerned that they’d get lost or eaten by something, so we needed to put a stop to that), I vacuumed the entire house, starting with the upstairs.

The foster kittens have no great love for the vacuum cleaner, so while three of them went and hid under the recliner in my room, Delmar sat atop the cat tree and glared at me while I was vacuuming their room. It always amazes me just how much cat hair accumulates in there in the course of a week – they throw off so much cat hair, I’m surprised there’s any left on their little bodies.

When I was done vacuuming my room, I stood and looked and considered, and decided to move my bed. I had it sitting at an angle, and that worked out okay except that the bedside table was too far away from the bed, so I couldn’t see what time it was in the middle of the night without getting out of bed and squinting at the clock.

This is what my room looked like before I started moving stuff.

This is what it looks like now:

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I think the room looks smaller, and I’m not sure how much I like having it off-center, but I wanted the cats to be able to sit on that table and look out the window if they wanted, and the closet door to the left opens all the way with no problem, AND I’ve slept quite well the past two nights, so it’ll be staying that way for the time being.

When Fred was done outside, he went and took a shower, and then we headed out to find the slaughter house. The pigs will be going to be processed the Sunday after Thanksgiving (they were originally scheduled for mid-December, but they’ve gotten a lot bigger a lot faster than we expected), and the place that will be processing them is not the place where we took the last two (the place where we took the last two don’t process anything but deer until February), so Fred wanted to make sure he knew where it was located.

We found it with no problems at all, and we headed for home, then stopped at a furniture store we happened to pass.

By the side door we’ve had this table:

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And while it’s a nice-looking table, it’s kind of rickety (the cats like to jump up on it, of course), and there’s only the one door, and most of the time it’s piled high with shit and I can’t stand looking at it. So it’s been my mission lately to find something to replace that table, something with more storage space and that won’t wobble when the cats jump up on top of it.

So since we spotted this big furniture place, we stopped and looked around, and I wasn’t finding anything I liked that would work, and I was getting grouchy, and Fred spotted something on the second floor and pointed to it and said “Would you consider something like that?”

At first I scoffed, because what he was pointing out was a jewelry armoire, but then we went and looked at it, and pulled out the drawers and discussed it, and the more we looked at it, the more it seemed to me that it’d work out for us. It had plenty of drawer space, wasn’t at all rickety, and the price was right, so we decided to get it.

Fred picked it up and we went downstairs to pay.

The women who were working were just delighted that we’d come inside and found something in less than twenty minutes (possibly less than ten, I wasn’t timing us) and wanted to just pay and take it with us.

The saleswoman who wrote up the sales slip introduced herself to Fred and shook his hand, and I amused myself by thinking of saying “Don’t get too attached” because I doubt we’ll ever be back (nothing against the store – it’s just not in an area we generally visit). They rang up the sale and then gave us a couple of insulated coffee mugs with the store name and web site on the side of them, and then we were out of there.

I didn’t realize it until we were loading it into the car, but the absolute best thing about it is that both sides open up and have hooks where, I assume, you’d hang necklaces if you were using it for its intended purpose. We’re using both sides to organize our keys and all the extra house, shed, and coop keys we have. VERY handy.

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It’s nothing fancy, and we’re probably going to hell for buying a cheap piece of furniture to replace an antique table, but it works really well for us and it’s nice and solid and I like the way it looks, so there you go.

We spent the rest of the day inside, mostly. It was ugly and cold outside all day and neither of us had any desire to be outside. We talked about going to the movie store, but ultimately decided we could find something we already had recorded or a movie we owned to watch, so we stopped and picked up sandwiches for lunch and went home.

What Happens in Vegas was on pay per view, so we recorded that and watched it, and as we’d both been told, it was no great award-winning movie, but it was a romantic comedy and we are always entertained by Kelso (he’ll always be Kelso from That 70s Show to us), so it was a pretty good choice. If you’ve got nothing better to watch, it’s not bad.

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We finally got some sun on Sunday, and Fred spent most of the day working outside. I spent most of the day pulling everything out of the hall and guest bedroom closets, wiping the dust off the floors, and rearranging everything that went back in. We’ve had a lot of empty boxes sitting in a corner of the computer room and it was bugging me, so I got all the packing and shipping stuff (boxes, packing peanuts, bubble wrap) arranged in the guest bedroom closet, and it looks a lot better. I’ve got a lot more decluttering to do, but it already looks a LOT better in the computer room and dining room, so it’s definitely a start. Hopefully by the time Thanksgiving gets here, the house will look halfway decent.

I also cleared out several of my desk drawers – my GOD, how much tape do I think I need?! – and the checkbook balanced and spent lots of time with the kittens, and ended the day by having ribs (in the crockpot with BBQ sauce), sweet potato crack, and green beans for dinner. Everything was grown here at Crooked Acres, and I think it’s going to be my goal to have a Crooked Acres-grown meal for dinner every Sunday night. It’s a good way to kick off the work week!

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I went upstairs yesterday afternoon and all four of the kittens came into my room and snoozed with me. And let me say this – I know now why cats sleep like 23 hours a day. It’s because when they’re sleeping, they are NEVER still. They’re always twitching or stretching or switching positions. Three of the four were curled up against me and the fourth (Marion) was curled up behind my knees, and I felt like I was on a ship in the middle of the ocean, the bed was practically rocking with all the moving around they were doing.

I’m not complaining, though – when all four of them start purring, it’s a very sweet sound.

Delmar’s the biggest snuggler of the bunch. He always, always lays down so that his face is as close to mine as possible, and sometimes he’s just so overwhelmed with love that he rubs his face against my nose, and often times I feel his lips on my nose and y’know, you don’t really think about cats having lips, but I assure you, Delmar certainly does.

All the kittens are snugglers – though Claudette has her limits and prefers to be petted a little, then back off and be in the general vicinity without actually touching me. She has got an amazingly loud purr for a little girl.

I took down the baby gates at the bottom of the stairs, but except for a few times when I caught sight of Lem checking out the guest bedroom (across from the bottom of the stairs), no one else has been down. They seem pretty happy having the upstairs to themselves (though Kara will occasionally venture upstairs and put the smack down on anyone who gets to close. She makes me despair, our Kara.) and usually when I go up there, at least a couple of them are hanging out in my room. They always react by rushing out of the room and into the foster room, then if I lay down on the bed and call to them, they’ll come back in. I don’t know why they think they need to run out of the room when they see me – they either feel the need to go to their “safe place” or they think they’re not supposed to be in that room, I’m not sure which. I hope they get over it, though!

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More pics over at L&H.

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2008-11-17 (4)
“I’m ready for church. That preacher better not go on and on about patience this week, though. I’m not in the mood for that shit.”

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Previously
2007: Hey! I was decluttering last year at this time, too!
2006: Here’s Doctor Robyn’s list of diagnoses.
2005: Cat hair on the seat of your pants! It’s the Next Big Thing!
2004: Do you suppose that cats realize that when we kiss them, it’s a sign of affection?
2003: NAS-TAY.
2002: No entry.
2001: No entry.
2000: Thanks, y’all, for your emails regarding hamster sex.
1999: So, I didn’t get the kitten.

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