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3/31/09

by @ Tuesday, March 31st, 2009. Filed under Crooked Acres, Fostering, Life

So Fred mentioned in one of his recent entries that we’d decided to put together a purebred flock – Black Copper Marans – to raise in the old chicken yard. He ordered eggs from two different places, and one of the shipments came in two days, but the other one was shipped in Georgia and went to freakin’ NEW JERSEY before it finally ended up here, a week after it had been mailed out.

Good thing she shipped them Priority, isn’t it? I guess Parcel Post would have taken a month.

We put the first batch of eggs in the incubator (I have the hardest time coming up with the word “incubator” – my mind always serves up “humidifier” instead for some reason) as soon as we got them, and since the second batch of eggs arrived five days later than the first, we put them in the incubator, but had to order a second incubator (as eggs reach time to hatch, they have different humidity requirements) to put the second batch of eggs in when it was time for the first batch to begin hatching.

Several days after the second batch of eggs were placed in the incubator, Fred candled them (ie, held a bright light up to each egg to see if there was anything growing in them). He reported to me that of the 40 eggs in the incubator, it looked like only one – possibly two – had any growth.

He informed me that chicks raised singly are “weird” and “warped.” We began brainstorming about what to do. We dithered for a few days. He called around to various hatcheries. He offered that we could get a batch of chicks from one of the hatcheries to arrive the day before hatching (on the first batch) was to begin, and then they could all be raised together.

Once he’d offered up the idea, I pushed him to do it. Who wants a chick who’s “weird” and “warped”?

(Yes, I heard you say “Fred does. He married you, didn’t he? LOL!” Shaddup.)

So Fred ordered a batch of what I call the “Shit no one else wants” special. Basically, we’d get a mish-mash of chicks that hadn’t been sold in a batch to someone else. After the chicks were ordered, Fred went and candled the eggs again.

Suddenly we potentially have 20 eggs hatching, but some of the “membranes are loose and weird.” (I am declaring this goddamn chicken thing to be right the fuck out of control. This time next week, depending on how many of the Marans hatch, we could have 150 chickens. JESUS CHRIST.)

We got 26 chicks from the hatchery this morning. They’re awfully cute, and we got some interesting looking ones. I expect there’ll be more roosters than hens (even though they’re supposed to be “straight run”, ie – “you get what we grab.”).

And tomorrow the hatching begins. Maybe. Or maybe nothing will hatch at all.

I find that this whole ordering-eggs-through-the-mail is really not my sort of thing. I can’t handle the stress – will they get here in a timely manner? Will they have been run through an X-Ray, thus potentially causing deformed chicks? Will any of them be fertile?

I’ve suggested to Fred that if we get less than 10 from the eggs, we cut our losses, add them to the General Chicken Population of the Back Forty, and make a purebred flock of Buff Orpingtons. If we get more than 10, we’ll go ahead with the Marans flock.

I bet you never knew life with chickens could be this fascinating, did you?

(Heh.)

2009-03-31 (8) 2009-03-31 (9)

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I started off the day angry and annoyed yesterday, actually. I had a dental appointment at 8, an appointment that’s been scheduled and written on the calendar for about a month. But then Fred informed me on Sunday that the chicks might arrive, and when they arrive the post office always calls pretty early, and though I suggested that Fred go into work late and deal with the chicks himself, that didn’t happen.

Naturally, TEN MINUTES before I needed to be on the road driving to the dentist’s office, Fred called to report that the post office had called and I needed to go get the goddamn chicks. I swore a blue streak during my drive to the post office (it’s really close, so I had to swear fast!), I got the box o’ pissed-off-sounding chicks, and drove them home. Fred had set up the brooder in the garage on Sunday, so all I had to do was take each chick out of the box, dip its beak in the water, and then set it free in the brooder.

Except I had to LEAVE RIGHT NOW or risk being late for my appointment. I called Fred and asked, in an exasperated manner, if the beaks needed to be dipped RIGHT NOW or if I could wait ’til later. Exasperated by my exasperation, he said it could wait.

I made it to my appointment about three minutes late (according to the clock on my cell phone. The clock in my car said I was ten minutes late. None of the clocks in my life are in accordance with each other.). I was there to have a filling replaced in a tooth on the top in the front of my mouth, which meant they had to numb up my lip, and part of my nose went numb as well.

It’s not a pleasant sensation.

That went pretty quickly, and I was out of there by 8:45. Since our litter reserves were hitting critical levels (I only had two 40-pound buckets of litter, and one 25-pound bucket of litter left – not NEARLY enough!), I went to Sam’s.

Did you feel the earth shake yesterday? I’m sorry about that. For the first time EVER, I went into Sam’s with a list (kitty litter and an entrance mat), and left (duh duh DUH!) WITH ONLY THE THINGS ON MY LIST.

Oh, don’t get me wrong – I eyeballed the yoga pants, and I stared longingly at the underwear, and I considered the 300-pound bag of M&Ms, but I walked out with just the litter and the mat, and had to call Fred and report how awesome I am, because I’m pretty sure that has never ever ever happened before in the history of me.

Fred was distinctly underwhelmed. HE JUST DOES NOT UNDERSTAND.

Naturally, since my numbed-up lip made it hard to talk clearly, the cashier struck up a conversation with me. OF COURSE.

I left Sam’s and stopped at Wal-mart on the way home to pick up dog food and a few grocery items (I’m pleased to see that the price of milk had dropped to a reasonable level), and OF COURSE on my way out the door the women working at the door had to strike up a conversation with me. She wanted to know what kind of dogs I had, and how big they were. And did I mention the numb lip making it hard to speak clearly? I could see on her face that every time I said something, it took her brain several long seconds to decipher what I’d said.

I stopped at the bank, and then headed home.

At home, I unloaded the car, then went out to the garage and proceeded to dip the beaks of the new chickens into water – well. Actually, first I had to ask Fred where he’d put the rocks that we put in the bottom of the waterer. Little chickens are tiny and stupid and prone to fall over asleep where they stand, and it is no fun to find a drowned baby chicken, believe you me. So Fred didn’t know where he’d left the rocks, so I was wandering all over hell and creation before he decided that maybe he’d left them over by the wood shed after he cleaned them off a few weeks ago.

I found them, put the rocks in the bottom of the waterer, dipped the beaks of the new chickens, and then left the garage and almost had a heart attack when I found someone waiting in the driveway. It was a guy who regularly buys eggs from us, stopping to see if we had any. (I am coming to decide that the only real service the “Fresh eggs – $2.00” sign provides is to bring in new customers. People who’ve bought from us before stop by regularly to buy again. I find that the more often it happens, the less it bothers me, actually.

(And at this point, the money we make from the eggs we sell pretty much pays for the chicken feed and scratch. They’re paying their own way, bless their hard-working little hearts.)

The baby chicks taken care of, I went over to the blue chicken coop to check on the other little chickens. Fred wrote about this yesterday, Charlie is recuperating (reCOOPerating, HA HA!) in the blue coop amongst the smaller chickens, and also the white silkie went broody, so we moved her into that coop (and some eggs for her to hatch. I DON’T THINK WE HAVE ENOUGH CHICKENS.) as well because we’re a little leery of the dogs around baby chickens.

When I went into the coop to check on Charlie, she was in a nest box, and she was laying on her side with her head bent at an odd angle, and I panicked.

“Chuck!” I said. I went over and touched her, and she started flailing around. “Chuckles, buddy, what’s going on?” I said. She honestly looked like she was dying. I picked her up and set her on her feet, and she fell over again and began flailing. I finally picked her up and put her on the floor of the coop and she sat there and blinked and looked around, both her wings trembling, and then walked over to the food and began eating. I decided that since there wasn’t much straw in the nest box, she’d slumped over onto her side in her sleep, and then since she didn’t have the use of both her wings, she couldn’t get back up.

Later, I saw that she’d left the coop and was out in the little yard with the little chickens. When I went over to toss some scratch she said “Hey, lady, I would like to get back into the coop, but as I have twisted-up toes and cannot use my injured wing to balance myself, what happens is that I begin walking up the ramp, lose my balance, and go tumbling off the ramp. Look! Let me demonstrate that for you! Don’t you feel like a cruel and abusive chicken owner?”

So I helped poor crippled Charlie back into the coop. When Fred got home, he filled up the nest box with straw, so that hopefully she won’t go falling onto her side and flail around and scare me (because it’s all about ME, duh).

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Yesterday I dragged a Cat-It water fountain out of storage. I’ve had it for a while (I got it for free – earned it with Fresh Step Paw Points! They don’t seem to offer the water fountains anymore, though.) and the last few days I’ve been trying to decide what to do about the water bowl situation in the kitten room. I have two big bowls filled with water in there, but they’re awfully high and heavy and it’s a pain to always have to fill them (and I kind of worry that the water level will get too low when I’m not paying attention and a kitten will have to lean over the bowl and end up falling in and god knows kittens are not the most coordinated little beasts). I used to have a lot of smaller bowls, but I think I tossed them in the great “Oh my god, I have TOO MUCH STUFF IN THIS HOUSE!” purging of 2008.

Anyway, when I got the Cat-It last year, I set it up in the front room for my cats and they completely ignored it – it appears they prefer the Petmate fountain in the bathroom upstairs, or the Drinkwell fountain in the laundry room. (Actually, a couple of them just prefer their water, unmoving, in a bowl. SO unadventurous.) So I put it in storage and forgot about it until recently.

Yesterday, I filled it up and took it into the kitten room, and plugged it in. I half-expected there to be a stampede of kittens to the new exciting thing in the room, but they completely ignored it for about half an hour. Eventually, Phinneas went over to check it out, he sniffed at it, and then he REARED UP ON HIS BACK LEGS AND DANCED AWAY FROM IT.

Oh, if I’d only had the camera with me. And turned on. And pointed at him.

Ah well – I can live with missing the photo opportunity, since I was snuggling kittens at the time.

This morning, I saw at least two kittens drinking out of the fountain, so apparently overnight they had a meeting and decided that the water fountain was A-OK.

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“Madame, quite frankly I am appalled that you would take such liberties with me. Did I indicate that a belleh rub would be welcome? I did not.”

More kitten pics over at L&H.

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2009-03-31 (11)
One thing Mister Boogers does not het? Sleeping.

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Previously
2008: Shea Butters would be an excellent stripper name.
2007: No entry.
2006: It was so friggin’ cute I made Fred listen to it, too.
2005: I have my finger on the pulse of pop culture, apparently.
2004: A day in the life.
2003: What makes me crazy.
2002: No entry.
2001: No entry.
2000: Okay, enough of the wallowing.

3/30/09

by @ Monday, March 30th, 2009. Filed under Fostering, Life

You’d think after having a day of FAIL on Thursday that Friday would be so very much better. It started off better, I got out of the house bright and early to take the recycling (which had been piled high for days, but taking the recycling to the recycling center is BORING, so I put it off for several days past the point where any civilized human being would have loaded up the car and gotten it done). On my way down the road I called Fred on my cell phone to ask if he needed anything at the grocery store. Since I was going to be in town anyway, I figured I’d stop at the grocery store.

Oh, FINE. That’s a LIE. I was going to town BECAUSE I wanted to go to the grocery store to buy powdered sugar to make cupcakes (well, the powdered sugar was for the frosting), and figured since I was going to town anyway, I’d take the recycling back. If I hadn’t needed powdered sugar, I’d be typing this to you from atop a fifteen-foot tower of cat food cans, I’m sure.

Anyway, when I called Fred he told me that he’d called Dish N3twork and found that they could come out to set up our new service on Saturday, and this meant that we needed to get the Dir3ctTV DVR cleared off because as of midnight, our Dir3ctTV service would be cut off.

So I dropped off the recycling and then went to the grocery store, and I was standing the checkout line when the lady who was bagging the groceries for the person ahead of me seemed to recognize me. She looked at me several times and smiled at me, and she didn’t look familiar. I’m guessing either she’s a reader, she remembers me from the article in the local newspaper (the one about Flappy McGee (GODRESTHERTASTYSOUL) laying an egg inside an egg) last year, or we had a conversation at some point in the past that I’m totally blanking on. Who knows?

I ran home, went and spent some time with the kittens, and then headed for the living room with purpose. I knew I had an episode of Lost to watch, a couple of episodes of Jon & Kate Plus Eight, and an episode of Brothers & Sisters as well. I put on my slippers – which were laying near the couch, which I point out only because it’ll be important in a minute – and sat down to watch TV. Then I thought “Oh! I need to go take my lunch out of the freezer so it’ll thaw before lunch time!”

I did that, and I walked back into the living room, and I glanced down at the floor between the two ottomans (ottomen?), and I said “Huh. The floor is.. wet? What the hell?” I got down on my hands and knees to investigate, and quickly became aware that it wasn’t water. IT WASN’T WATER AT ALL.

Goddamn motherfucking cats. And the part where the cat – or cats – had peed was exactly where my slippers had been laying. I took off my slippers and sniffed them, and sure enough, the far-too-familiar odor was there.

I went and got the bottle of Cat Odor Off (which I use alternately with Stink-Free these days) and some cleaning rags, and I cleaned up the goddamn cat pee, and I saturated the rug near that area, and I tossed my slippers in the washer. And then I decided that since I had the spray and the cleaning rags out, I’d go check out the far corner of the room to see if anyone had peed there. I don’t know why, and I don’t know who (though of course I have my suspicions), but in the corner of the front room where the stairs that Fred built are located (there’s a platform at the top of the stairs for a cat bed), someone regularly sprays. I went over to check it out, and there were a few drops on the floor. So I wiped them up and I stood up and decided I still smelled cat pee.

A few weeks ago, on my one day of productivity, when I got out the sewing machine and sewed a few beds for the cats, I sewed a bed to go on the top of the stairs. And because I knew that someone likes to spray over there regularly, I got all smarty-pants, and on the inside of that cat bed, I sewed a piece of shower curtain. My idea was that the shower curtain would catch any cat urine that was left on the cat bed, which would protect the platform.

So on Friday, I picked up that bed, and apparently the piece of shower curtain worked REALLY well, because when I picked up the goddamn bed, a gallon of cat pee when pouring out all over the goddamn motherfucking place. And such is my life, my soaked-in-cat-pee life, that I didn’t even have a temper tantrum. I just shot a strong look of loathing at the nearest cat, and I began cleaning.

In the end, I had to scrub down that whole area of the room, and then strip off my clothes and toss them in the washer.

And then finally I sat my ass down in front of the TV and I watched Jon & Kate Plus Eight and Lost, and about ten minutes of Brothers & Sisters before deciding I wasn’t in the mood for those goddamn Walkers, and then I deleted Castle (which I’d been taping but hadn’t watched) and a million episodes of Oprah, and then I went out and hung out with the kittens for a long, long time.

At some point in there I went into the kitchen and made a batch of Sugar Cupcakes, the recipe for which I’d ripped out of a magazine. During the making of the cupcakes, I made two crucial mistakes.

First, I lined the muffin (cupcake) tins with silicon liners. Second, I followed the directions to a T and used almond extract.

When Fred got home from work, I made the frosting for the cupcakes and he frosted them, and then he went to eat one of them. Which is when we discovered that those silicon liners don’t pull away from the cupcake, like, at ALL. So half the fucking cupcake stuck to the liner, and then he took a bite of the cupcake and Princess Fred doesn’t care for almond flavored things. Like, at all.

(I was apparently supposed to magically KNOW of his dislike of almond flavoring, but somehow I managed to not add this tidbit to my Super Important Fred Database, so I DIDN’T FUCKING KNOW.)

So he had a small temper tantrum, and as my belief is that you should respond to an uprising by nuking the village, I had a SUPER temper tantrum and told him I was never baking anything for him again EVER DO YOU HEAR ME YOU GODDAMN MOTHERFUCKER?!

(I’m not sure that two days before your wife’s period is due is really the time to get pissy with her.)

And so the pigs got themselves quite the treat that night, let me tell you. I could handle the almond flavoring (I am not a pretty pretty princess with delicate tastes), but the fact that the bottom half of the cupcakes stuck to the silicon liners got all over my nerves.

(Also, I’m not crazy about cream cheese icing.)

So that was Friday. Friday = FAIL.

Saturday was quite a bit better, actually. I boxed the kittens up into carriers and spent half an hour vacuuming their room, changing out litter boxes, and wiping down various surfaces. I spent lots of time with the kittens, vacuumed the house, painted the spots on the ceiling I’d primed earlier in the week.

Mid-morning, Fred ran over to the post office which is literally less than 200 yards from our house. He had some eggs to mail, and before he left he reminded me that he had the “eggs for sale” sign up.

“Try to hold off the hordes!” he joked. It’s always his job to deal with the public when it comes to selling eggs, whether they be for eating or for hatching, and I give him a hard time if there’s even the slightest possibility that I might have to talk to a stranger about the price of our eggs.

He’d been gone for MAYBE a minute and a half, and I was sitting in front of my computer when I heard a sound in the driveway. I looked out, and there was a man waving to get my attention.

He wanted to buy eggs, of course. We had a discussion about the price of eggs – or rather, I guess he knew how much the eggs were (it’s on the sign), but he wasn’t sure how many eggs you’d get for $2. I told him it was $2 for a dozen, but he didn’t understand “dozen”, so I rephrased it as being $2 for 12, and he asked for 24.

(The majority of people who buy eggs from us are primarily Spanish speakers with a bit of English thrown in, and it kind of makes me want to take a course in elementary Spanish so I can better communicate with them.)

He took the eggs and paid, and as he was walking back to his truck, Fred pulled into the driveway and grinned at me, because what are the chances he’d leave for three minutes and someone would come buy eggs?

Later in the morning, I made a batch of Sugar Cupcakes, this time with lemon instead of almond, and with buttercream frosting instead of cream cheese. They came out good and they were tasty, but I think Fred liked them more than I did, and in the end the pigs got about half of them.

Saturday afternoon I was hanging out in the kitten room, and Beulah climbed up in my arms and went to sleep, and then Ezra and Elijah did, and I had the other four in my lap, sound asleep. And I wished like hell that Fred would come upstairs with a camera, and so I started sending very strong thought waves at him to COME UPSTAIRS VERY QUIETLY WITH THE CAMERA AND TAKE A PICTURE OF THIS THE CUTE WILL KILL YOU, and I thought this many times and as hard as I could think it, but that bastard just sat downstairs, oblivious to the thoughts that were being aimed at him. Hmph.

(Seriously, it was so cute you would have died.)

Sunday I put an eight-pound pork roast in the oven. This was a roast we’d gotten off our very first pig and we hadn’t eaten because it was so fucking HUGE, and finally I said “Let’s just cook this up and eat it so I can free up some freezer space!” I had no idea how long it was going to take to cook, but I put it in at 8:00 at 275º F, and it took about 5 hours to cook.

We had it last night for dinner with baked squash and green beans, and it was nice to have another meal comprised of things we’d grown ourselves.

And we’ll be eating roast pork for the rest of the week, I expect.

Sunday afternoon I was hanging out in the kitten room, and all the kittens were racing around except for Beulah, who was perched on my leg. I picked her up and laid down on my side, and she settled in to take a nap, and then suddenly from all points of the room kittens ran over and climbed on top of me, so I rolled onto my back, and all the kittens except Phinneas took a nap on me. I dozed for a little while, waking occasionally to protect my nose from a kitten butt invasion (they REALLY like to try to sit on my nose, I swear to god. It must be warm.)

I also sent more strong thought waves at Fred to come upstairs with the camera, but again – nada. Hmph.

And that was the weekend. It started out with a day of FAIL and ended with good food and purring kittens.

I’m not complaining.

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I weighed the kittens yesterday. At the large end there’s Phinneas, who weighed in at a pound and 7 ounces. On the petite end, there’s Beulah who only gained an ounce in the last week, and now weighs a whopping 9.5 ounces.

When I fretted about her weight, Fred pointed out that she’d gained 1/12th 12% of her body weight. And then I thought about it some more and decided that she acts just like a healthy kitten, she’s just tiny. So I’m not going to worry about it.

The other kittens were all right around 1 pound 2 – 3 ounces.

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Elijah and Beulah battle it out for the title of Supreme Ruler of the Kittehs. (Beulah won. She’s tiny, but she’s scrappy!)

More kitten pics over at L&H.

Also, there was an entry over there yesterday, complete with a video!

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2009-03-30 (11)
“Do these daffodils make me look less porky?”

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Previously
2008: No entry.
2007: Love you! Mean it!
2006: I am absolutely the last person on Earth you want in the vicinity if there’s an emergency.
2005: Questions answered.
2004: I am absolutely stunned that… I frankly couldn’t give less of a shit.
2003: No entry.
2002: No entry.
2001: I have to wonder, what the hell do all you skinny people do?
2000: Yes, this is a lame, short entry, but since y’all love me, you’ll be back. Right?

Attention: Calgary, Alberta, Canada readers!

by @ Saturday, March 28th, 2009. Filed under Life

Donna says:

My friend is trying to get me to take her kitty (she lives outside the city and strays are always having kittens in their garage… She’s kept 3 but can’t keep more!) I can’t have more than the two I have. I KNOW you have readers in the Calgary, Alberta Canada area…. Who wants a kitty???

Lisa says:

She is adorable, Sarah is her name-a vixen and a diva but incredibly smart. Pass this picture on…I can’t keep her in the basement that much longer!!!

Sarah1

Sarah2

Anyone? Anyone? Bueller????

3/27/09

by @ Friday, March 27th, 2009. Filed under CAE, Fostering, Life

Yesterday was one of those days.

First, it rained really hard all night, so the back forty was half under water – there was even water up under the chicken coop, and I don’t think that’s happened before. Fred called from work to ask me to put my boots on – my tall ones, the ones I’d just packed away last weekend – and slog out to turn the lower part of the electric fence off. Since the lower wires were completely submerged, it wasn’t working, so needed to be turned off. I did that, and then stood and watched George and Gracie racing around through the water. Those dogs certainly do like to get wet. The water in one part of the back forty was deep enough for them to swim in, I think, and they were wading around, chest-high, drinking the water and barking at things I could not see.

(That they drink the water just grosses me out. That seems like a recipe for a walloping case of dysentery. Gah. Yeah, I know they’re dogs and it’s what they do, but still. GROSS.)

Then I came inside and began collaring up the cats so they could go outside. It was raining and except for Tommy they don’t like to run around in the rain, but they like to have the OPTION of going out and sitting in the rain, so I let them do whatever the hell they want.

I got Kara, Tommy, and Mister Boogers collared up, but I couldn’t find Sugarbutt anywhere. I thought perhaps he’d slipped into Fred’s room when Fred came out to get ready for work, so I ran upstairs and looked. No Sugarbutt. I looked in all his usual hangouts, I looked under the couches, and still – no Sugarbutt. I began to wonder if Fred had mistaken Sugarbutt for Newt and let him out the side door. I looked out the side door – no Sugarbutt.

Finally, I went out into the back yard where the other cats were wandering around (the rain had momentarily stopped), and Sugarbutt was sitting on the air conditioning unit. Somehow, he’d waited ’til I was looking elsewhere and slipped past me out the door.

I approached him to put his collar on, and he knew exactly what I was trying to do. He did a big jump off the air conditioning unit and ran across the yard in great big leaps, bellowing “FREEEEEEDOOOOOOOM!” the entire way. I chased him over to the patio, then got smart and hid the collar behind my back.

“Hey, Suggie,” I said, super-casual. “How’s it going?”

He completely forgot that I was trying to take his freedom away, and came over for an ear scratch. I started to bring the collar around to put on him, he caught a glimpse of it, and off he raced again. In the end, after a couple of circuits around the back yard, he ran into the house and I lured him back into the laundry room by dumping more cat food into one of the bowls. He heard the telltale sound of OMG! FRESH FOOD!, came running, bellied up to the bowl, and I snapped his collar on.

Things calmed down for a while ’til Fred called and told me that he’d ordered some posts and wood that would be delivered momentarily, and then I hung up the phone and glanced over into the small chicken yard. Fred combined the two younger batches of chickens – the seven born at the beginning of February, and the 34 born at the beginning of this month – last weekend. They’re in the blue coop, and he made a small yard to the side of the coop so they can come outside if they want to, or come out and go back in. Apparently a few of the little chickens had figured out how to get out of the little yard, and were wandering around making their “I am lost and scared, how do I get home?” noise.

I went out and spent half an hour trying to catch the two little brats, caught one of them, but couldn’t catch the other to save my life. I came inside and called Fred to bitch at him about it, said I hoped the little shithead got caught and eaten by a hawk, and then I glanced out the window to find anarchy.

However those two had gotten out of the little yard, another ten or so had gotten out the same way, and were wandering around. I swore, hung up the phone, and went out to corral them back into their little yard. One particularly stubborn little bastard went hauling ass away from the coop, but apparently had time for a leisurely stop to pick up a worm before he began running from me again.

I got all the little chickens put back in their yard and was just bending down to check under the coop to see if there were any other escapees, when the guy showed up to deliver the wood and concrete Fred had ordered.

(He’s making a shade-type structure to go on the front of the chicken coop so that the dogs and chickens will have a place to hang out when it’s raining and can stay relatively dry.)

So I stood around while the guy unloaded everything and talked about his daughter’s blue heelers (these are dogs, I assume) and how we have a little of everything, animal-wise, how his parents are talking about getting chickens (his mother doesn’t like chickens, but his father really wants some), how his mother trades a guy at a grocery store a pound of shelled pecans for 12 dozen eggs, how his parents went to some store that was going out of business and bought all their meat, and had to get two deep freezes to keep all the meat, how his father shot off his mouth and now his mother won’t cook for him ’cause he doesn’t appreciate her. And so forth.

He left, and I went to rescue the other escapees. It took some doing, but I finally got the little brats back into their yard, and then I went and found scraps of wood to block up the gaps where they were escaping.

After a morning like that, is it any wonder I spent the afternoon napping on the floor of the foster kitten room with a bunch of purring little kittens?

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Boiled okra??? *cringe* How would one make boiled okra that would make it appetizing? I imagine the sliminess factor would be wayyy off the charts.

I have no idea on earth how to make boiled okra that is appetizing – as far as I’m concerned, it’s a nasty, slimy mess, but Fred eats it (and he insists on growing WAY too much of it), so I’ll boil that shit up for him and eat something else as a vegetable for that meal.

I do like oven-fried (or fried) okra, and I like it stir-fried in our vegetable medley, but I won’t eat it boiled. Blech.

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A couple of years ago I was on a jury with a woman who was a retired doctor. I thought she seemed a little young to have retired (she looked to be in her early 50’s) so I nosily inquired why. She said that when she first started practicing she was told that to make a decent living she would need to see 8-10 patients a day. Once HMO’s came into play and also when medical malpractice insurance costs skyrocketed, by the end of her practicing days she needed to see 32 patients a day to make a living and she felt the quality of care she could give patients was diminished. HUGE difference and a really interesting insight on why the doctor is always hustling around like their a@@ is on fire.

Good god – Fred’s doctor is open from 8 to 4 (and they’re closed for an hour and a half in the middle of the day). I can’t imagine trying to cram 32 patients into that time frame!

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My aunt was walking her dog a few years back when a woman walking toward her stopped her and said, “That dog is so ugly, it’s almost cute!” My very quick-witted aunt promptly replied, “I bet that’s what people say about you.”

HA! I wish I was quick-witted like that. I come up with some pretty good comebacks – two days later. ::sigh::

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About the yogurt cure – I don’t get the yeasties often, but they’re pesky when they show up. And the OTC products? Give me hives. Good times. Anyway, yogurt really does work, and it’s quite easy to freeze: take a pair of thin latex gloves. Stuff each finger full o’unflavored yogurt. Freeze. When needed, you can chop off a finger, and you’ve got you a nice cold cootch-sicle (and the cold helps with that fabulous burning, itching).

and

As for the yeast infection, I started taking an acidophilus capsule (live yogurt cultures) daily and have never had a yeast infection since. My gynecologist recommended the acidophilus. Bonus it not only keeps your cooch bacteria in balance it also keeps the balance of good and bad bacteria in your belly and intestines.

I swear to god, my readers know absolutely everything! Thanks for the insight, you guys. 🙂

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If you cut the lotion bottle, is there only enough for one use or does it dry up before you can use it all??

I usually get several more uses out of the lotion left in the bottle – I use a sandwich bag over the top of the half bottle so the lotion won’t dry up.

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finally got a chance to read the penny pincher story. Why do I feel like I live on a different planet than the commenters in the story? I have always used coupons but don’t buy just to use a coupon, I have a thingy that squeezes the toothpaste out of the tube, I use generic products after a trial run to make sure the product is good, buy things on sale usually. Anyway, you would think I lived on a compound with my husband and six of his other wives. No wonder we are in trouble if these basic cost saving things are considered awe inspiring and ground breaking. I have not tried the vinegar fabric softener yet. Does it leave any type of fragrance/odor. I am VERY sensitive to fragrance/odor.

Yeah, I love that steps we take that just make sense to us are viewed by some people as “Wow! That is SO FRUGAL!” Ask Fred – frugal is NOT my middle name.

The vinegar doesn’t leave any odor at all – it evaporates as your laundry dries, and you can’t smell it at all, I promise!

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Have you tried those water hog type of rugs/mats? I’ve heard they are really great at trapping dirt/water and are indestructible. I don’t have any personal knowledge, though.

I haven’t tried a water hog mat, actually – I can’t tell by looking at a picture of them whether they can be vacuumed, and that’s my number one requirement, that it be vacuum-able. The mat we originally had by the back door couldn’t be vacuumed (well, it could, but all the stuff wouldn’t come up because the mat was deep and prone to hold on to the crap that got tracked across it) and it drove me nuts.

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I would like to see your grown up cats all lined up in a row like that! Think they’d go for it? No hissing, smacking, or eating off of each other’s plates?!

I don’t see that happening in this lifetime, no. Kara tends to get so excited at snack time that she runs around and growls at everyone and smacks them, and Spanky will run away if anyone gets too close to him, and Mister Boogers is just generally an asshole. Getting a picture like that might be my new goal, though – I’d certainly like to be able to!

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shout out for pet lovers- does anyone know where to find the milkbone line of dog toys? my jack russell’s birthday party is wednesday and i need to find a replacement for his favorite toy that he has thoroughly destroyed!

although my life is boring, i have a new blog. be sure to visit and enter for a free ipod!

and

Lisa, I see the Milkbone toys at Walgreens here in Texas.

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I echo the cuteness of the kitteh pics. And I totally agree, Best Ever pic of MizPoo. Totally notecard worthy even (hint hint)…will there be an assortment of And3rson Kitteh Notecards in your future? I carefully rationed out my Tubby Christmas cards last year because my supply of 3 packs was running low; I saw you still had them so I will probably get more in the future. But general notecards with kittehs are always appreciated around here as my best friend is the CrazyCatLady and I’d love some to write to her on. *Just another hint hint*

I’ve considered trying to put together an assortment of notecards featuring some of my favorite cat pictures (our cats, and fosters as well), but never really got to the point of looking around for a place to do it. I don’t believe it’s cost effective to do it on CafePress, but that’s something I might try to put together in the future. 🙂

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I’ve only seen that lol cat as this one, but it also made me laugh:

i like to sing-a
see more Lolcats and funny pictures

I knew I’d seen that picture before. It cracks me UP.

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I just created a blog for the first time. I really want it to be a place to rant and rave. I know you’ve had some issues when people “discovered” you. I am mostly worried because there is no way to keep it a secret from my husband. Yet, I know I will want to rant and rave about him. Is there a way you and Fred have dealt with this, or should I just suck it up and come to terms that I won’t be able to freely express my thoughts without him possibly seeing it. In other words, should I just leave him out of it? Also, do you have any other advice? I have changed all names to protect the innocent.

If you’re going to write about someone and you don’t want them to find it, you’re going to want to do it in a place where you can control access – you can have that as a separate section of your site, or on another site altogether. If you have it out in the open, you can change names and locations all you’d like, but I guarantee someone’s going to find it (I seem to recall Sundry being discovered by a member of her family who searched on the name of a drink and managed to stumble across her, and it wasn’t pretty), and they’re likely going to make sure whoever you’re ranting and raving about sees it, too. People are super-helpful that way, I’ve found.

There are sites where you can password protect what you write – wordpress, diaryland (I think) – or you can set it up so that people have to “friend” you to see what you’ve written – LiveJournal and OpenDiary.

As far as what Fred and I do, well – when I feel the need to rant and rave about Fred, I do it to his face most of the time and he generally takes it well. He probably has a web site somewhere – mywifeisaravingbitch.com, perhaps – that I know nothing about.

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Did you try surfthechannel.com I think they have every show on tv!

I checked it out – they actually didn’t have much of a selection when it comes to the Real Housewives, sadly.

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I’m with you on not giving up Bravo. I’m not the biggest fan of the NY housewives but there’s a new series coming out in May. It’s the real housewives of New Jersey. It originates in two towns very near where my husband grew up. He will LOVE identifying all the places. The cast are related 2 sisters married to 2 brothers and a sister-in-law. Nepotism is big here so it fits. I’ve considered giving up HBO/Showtime/Starz as well. There are alot of channels w/o them. Can’t go cheapest though too much good stuff on higher channels.

We discovered that if we switch from Dir3ctTv to Dish N3twork, we can save about $25 a month and still get Bravo – so we’re gonna switch!

And I can’t wait to see the NJ Housewives, I’m sure it’ll be something to see! It sure looks like Bravo’s trying to capitalize on the popularity of the housewives, aren’t they? Another year or two, we’ll have 52 weeks of housewives!

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I’m pretty sure (but I’m too damned lazy to check) that hulu.com has the housewives. NBC owns Bravo and hulu, so it should be there. Maybe a few weeks later, but there.

Are you suggesting that I should WAIT to view my crappy reality shows? The very IDEA! (Heh.) Actually, I still haven’t watched this week’s show yet – that’s my plan for later today.

Yeah, they have the housewives, but it looks like I’ll get to keep my Bravo TV anyway – yay!

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Is it my imagination or has Kara TOTALLY pudged-up since coming to Crooked Acres?!

SHE HAS NOT. She just has a very round face. I swear to god, she’s not portly at all. She might appear to be portly, but she’s not.

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My husband and I were debating. Do you think this is the last season of Big Love? It wrapped up awfully nice.

That’s an excellent question – it didn’t occur to me while I was watching the show, but now that you mention it, I don’t think there are any questions left unanswered by the season finale. It kind of had an air of finality to it, didn’t it?

I have to say that Chloe Sevigny managed to make me feel sorry for Nicki this season, something I never would have suspected she could do. And the scenes with Nicki and Albie were surprising to me – they were both completely different people, open and honest and comfortable with each other, as opposed to how they usually are – guarded and suspicious and untrusting.

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I think the white silkie looks like a muppet. An especially beautiful muppet.

2009-03-25 (12)

I can absolutely see that!

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Could you please get a good picture of a fat kitten belly – you know right after they eat and are comatose. I just need a fat kitten belly to look and dream about petting. It will stop me from running and getting a new kitten. My little condo and bed are full with 3 lazy cats, but they are so big. Their fat bellies aren’t as fun to pet as kitten bellies.

2009-03-27 (1)

There you go! It’s not especially big and round, though. I’ll have to work on getting a shot of Phinneas’s gut; I swear he’s got a little basketball tucked away in there.

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Canz we hearz Miz Poo keening?

I haven’t been able to catch her with the Flip Video, but I have a movie of her from a few years ago when we lived in Madison. Crank the sound way up and stab yourself through the eardrum with something sharp to get the full effect.

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I love the kittens’ round eyes. will they stay that colour do you think?

Probably not – kittens’ eyes start out the deepest, prettiest blue, and gradually turn to their permanent color, usually shades of green or gray. Their eyes have already started changing, and it’ll be a few weeks, I think, before we really know what color eyes they’ll end up with.

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Um, I am sensing that Beulah may be an AndersOn kitty soon. I want to be on the record early with this observation. Just sayin’

Oh, god. Please don’t say that – then I’ve got to say “Of course not, we already have too many cats, lol!” and then immediately adopt three cats. This time next year we’ll probably have 19 of them, and the year after that we’ll be living in the chicken coop and the chickens and cats will be living in the house. All 300 of each.

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2009-03-27 (2)
Beulah, conveniently located so that when the ball comes around the track, she’ll be there to greet it.

More kitten pics over at L&H.

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2009-03-27 (9)
Stinkerbelle gives her man Tommy a look o’ lurve. (Yes, this angle makes her look portly. She’s not. It’s just a bad angle!)

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Previously
2008: I suppose that’s what I get for not having a job, ain’t it?
2007: I think you can imagine how very fucking thrilled I was.
2006: It’s a little-known fact that the butt is the tenderest and most flavorful part of the cashew.
2005: No entry.
2004: No entry.
2003: I’d have to have a mind before I lost it, wouldn’t I?
2002: Luckily, I’ve perfected the mental art of putting my hands over my ears and humming very loudly should my mind ever try to wander in that direction.
2001: While we were on the way to the movie store this afternoon, she turned to me and said “For my birthday” which is in October, by the way, “Can I get another kind of pet?”
2000: Since then, Fred and I, predictably, have referred to smoking pot – when seen in movies – as “Smoking the wheat.”

3/26/09

by @ Thursday, March 26th, 2009. Filed under Fostering, Life

So, the word on my iPod is that it didn’t need a new LCD screen – it needed a new battery. I got an email from the place letting me know that the battery needed to be replaced, so I responded with “Can I authorize that via email? Go ahead and do it, and let me know how much it’ll be.”

And then they told me that actually it costs less to replace the battery than it would be to replace the screen, and they owe me $9 for the difference.

That rocks! They’re going to test it to make sure it’s working right, and then send it back to me. I can’t wait – I’m missing the hell out of my iPod, because I usually listen to it when I’m cleaning or vacuuming or cooking, and listening to the radio just isn’t the same.

Thanks, you guys, for your MP3-player suggestions. I’m going to save your suggestions for the inevitable time in the future when my iPod craps out for real. I suspect the new battery will buy me six months or a year, but eventually the damn thing is just going to die and I’ll have to replace it.

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I have nothing else to report – except that we got a shitload of rain yesterday, the back forty is half-flooded, and the dogs are practically swimming around the outside of the back forty – so for you, a meme! Stolen, I believe, from Ms. Darkstar, who stole it from Mr. POSSLQ, who stole it from someone else and so forth.

1. Did you date someone from your school? My first boyfriend was from my school, actually. He was the only one from my school that I dated.

2. Did you marry someone from your high school? I did not.

3. Did you car pool to school? I carpooled for a little while with my then-boyfriend my Junior year, but after that I either rode the bus or drove.

4. What kind of car did you have? A Chevette. I loved that car. I wish they still made them, I’d dearly love to have one.

5. What kind of car do you have now? A Suzuki Reno. Meh.

6. Its Friday night…where are you now? Watching TV ’til 8:30 or 9, spending time with the kittens, and then going to bed. Well – Fred goes to bed, I usually stay up and read for a while longer.

7. It is Friday night…where were you then? Probably working.

8. What kind of job did you have in high school? My first job, I worked as a carhop at a drive-in restaurant. Then I moved on up in the world and began working at McDonald’s. I worked there my Junior and Senior year. In the summer between my Junior and Senior years, I worked in a kitchen on an island (Malden Island) where a bunch of people from Massachusetts owned homes. I think I was too young and stupid to truly appreciate that job.

9. What kind of job do you do now? I am the High Priestess of Litter Box Scooping, Pig Treat Making, and Kitten Butt Wiping.

10. Were you a party animal? I was not.

11. Were you considered a flirt? Not in the slightest.

12. Were you in band, orchestra, or choir? None of those – and the world breathes a sigh of relief, because I have no rhythm or singing ability at all.

13. Were you a nerd? Not at all.

14. Did you get suspended from school? Nope.

15. Can you sing the fight song? I don’t think I ever knew what the fight song was. Did we have a fight song? Surely we did.

16. Who was/were your favorite teacher? Mr. Hall.

17. Where did you sit during lunch? Either with friends, in the library (the librarian would let me stay there even though the library was technically closed during my lunch period), or out in my car.

18. What was your school’s full name? Lisb0n High School.

19. Where did you party the most? Uh… nothing comes to mind. I didn’t really “party”, if by “party” you mean “get drunk” or “get high.” I hung out at friends’ houses a lot.

20. What was your school mascot? A greyhound? Maybe? The teams were called the Lisb0n Greyhounds, so surely they had someone in a greyhound costume? Fuck if I know. I never went to the games.

21. Would you do it again? Do… what? Go through high school again? Fuck no.

22. Did you have fun at Prom? I s’pose. Junior Prom, I went with a boy I had a crush on (I asked him) and Senior Prom I went with a friend (ditto). Prom is overrated, I think.

23. Do you still talk to the person you went to Prom with? Nope, neither of them. I have no clue where either of them even are, these days.

24. Are you planning on going to your next reunion? Nope. Haven’t gone to any of them yet, why would I start now?

25. Do you still talk to people from school? On Facebook, a few times.

26. What are/were your school’s colors? Uh. Black? White? Maybe red? I don’t remember.

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Honest to god, I’m equally terrified that I’m going to step on Beulah the runt (she likes to follow me around the room as I scoop litter boxes and pick stuff up) or squeeze her to death because she’s so cute.

2009-03-26 (9)

More kitten pics over at L&H.

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2009-03-26 (10)l
The view from my desk, most days.

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Previously
2008: It took me a few weeks, but I finally finished The Washingtonienne and today I am announcing that bitchypoo.com, in conjunction with vituperation.com, is awarding The Washingtonienne the title of The Most Vapid Book of This Century.
2007: I was filled with a black hatred for the goddamn lights and my goddamn husband and every goddamn thing that ever was.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.
2004: Another reason I love the man: he makes me laugh every day.
2003: I’ll tell you what, he’s lucky I didn’t go get the cleaver and chop that fucking finger right the fuck off.
2002: My mind is blank…
2001: It’s just the little things that get to me, y’know?
2000: Married people! Having sex in the middle of the day! What IS this world coming to?

3/25/09

by @ Wednesday, March 25th, 2009. Filed under CAE, Fostering, Life

Thanks, y’all, for your comments on the idea of keeping vs. canceling one’s land line. I gave Fred the go-ahead to call and cancel the land line yesterday. And then we found that if we cancel our phone service, our damn internet goes up by $10 a month, so I dithered a bit more (did I mention I’m a master ditherer), and ultimately we decided that I’d switch my cell phone plan to the cheapest Virgin Mobile offers ($6.99 a month; 10 cents a minute) and we’ll keep the land line. Of course, I’m keeping my 1000 text messages a month for $5, too, ’cause you’ve gotta have priorities.

I also gave him the go-ahead to call and cancel HBO. Everything we watch on HBO (Entourage, Big Love, uh… I think there’s something else, isn’t there?) eventually comes out on DVD, it’ll just be a matter of seeing it after everyone else, big deal. It’s not like my Netflix queue isn’t 10,000 DVDs long, after all. I don’t think we’ll run out of stuff to watch. (I did make him wait ’til the season finale of Big Love aired, though!)

We talked about switching to the cheapest plan Dir3ctTV has, but would you believe that doesn’t include Bravo? Fred’s giving me a hard time for not wanting to go without Bravo, but MAN. I can’t get enough of those crazy-ass housewives! If there was a place online where I could watch the shows for free, I’d be there, but I haven’t been able to find a place, so the cable plan stays the same. At least ’til he can convince me that we don’t need to keep the more expensive plan just ’cause I want to watch those crazy-ass housewives (good luck to him on that!).

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Yesterday I finally got around to spackling the two small holes in the ceiling of the computer room, and primed over the stains on the computer room and laundry ceilings. Said holes and stains were caused by the roof leaking earlier this year (late last year?), and now that the roof is fixed, it’s well past time to cover the stains on the ceiling.

It wasn’t until AFTER I’d painted primer over the spackled holes in the computer room that Fred reminded me that I was supposed to sand before I primed.

DAMNIT.

So I guess today I’ll sand, re-prime, and if the ceiling in the laundry room (which I haven’t even looked at today) needs it, I’ll put a second coat of primer on that. If it doesn’t, I’ll paint it. I’m just hoping the ceiling paint matches what’s already on the ceiling (it should, it’s the same brand from the same store, but that doesn’t mean anything, of course). I’d hate to have to paint the entire fucking ceiling.

I’m sure I’ll have to, though. Ugh.

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Scenes from around Crooked Acres:

2009-03-25 (Pear Blossom)
Pear tree in bloom!

2009-03-25 (Peach Blossom)
Peach tree in bloom!

2009-03-25 (12)
The white Silkie. I think she’s beeeeautiful.

2009-03-25 (10)
Michelle keeps an eye on his wimmin.

2009-03-25 (9)
I don’t know what kind of rooster this is – we thought they might be Icelandic, but I’m really not sure about that – but we’ve got two of them. And they’re gorgeous, but they are ASSHOLES, and their days are numbered.

2009-03-25 (8)
Silkie cross. I love the way the tips of her wing feathers are white.

2009-03-25 (7)
The little bitty ones (now almost three weeks old) enjoy being outside. This one was so happy s/he decided to try out his/ her Matrix moves.

2009-03-25 (6)
Tommy and the Boogs try to figure out how to get their paws on those little snack-size chirpers. (They were unsuccessful, but not for lack of thinking long and hard about it.)

2009-03-25 (5)
“I bet I could totally fly!”
“Keep dreaming, dude.”

2009-03-25 (4)
“How about now?”
“Uh… nope. No egg.”
“Now?”
“Nope, nothing.”
“DARN IT!”

2009-03-25 (3)
“I’m flying! I’M FLYINGGGGGGGGG!”

2009-03-25 (2)

2009-03-25 (1)
Polish crosses. LOVE the mohawks!

2009-03-25 (11)
Oreo looks like he’s making a smartass comment, doesn’t he?

2009-03-25 (14)
Yes, please beware of the dogs…

2009-03-25 (15)
For they are fearsome creatures.

2009-03-25 (13)
“What?”

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2009-03-25 (21)
“I can has a snuggle?”

(More kitten pics over at L&H)

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2009-03-25 (23)
Being Sheriff Mama is TOUGH work.

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Previously
2008: “My flabby sections” would be an excellent band name.
2007: No entry.
2006: No entry.
2005: The spud is officially licensed.
2004: Ain’t it always the way that when you call someone names in your journal, secure in the knowledge that they’ll never see it, they always do?
2003: (And before you say it, yes. You shouldn’t give a shit what I think, either.)
2002: Is it just me?
2001: No entry.
2000: If you knew you’d get $341 million for being treated savagely and cruelly for 7 years, would you do it?

3/24/09

by @ Tuesday, March 24th, 2009. Filed under Fostering, Life

So I was cleaning the house last Thursday (or vacuuming, or something along those lines) and I was listening to my iPod, and then the KATG show I was listening to came to an end, and I glanced down at the screen, and it was blank with squiggly black lines across it. Nothing readable at all. I flipped the hold switch back and forth, I synced it with my iTunes, I surrounded it in a verbal blanket of profanity, nothing worked.

I Googled around and decided that it needed a new LCD screen, found a place that would do it for a nominal fee (“nominal” meaning “costs less than buying a new goddamn iPod”), and sent it off.

Saturday, I got a call from the place I sent it to. They’d received it and turned it on, got the squiggly lines, synced it up with their iTunes, and the screen came on just fine.

Might be a battery issue; might be because the iPod hates me. Who the fuck knows? So now I’m waiting to hear from the diagnostic department.

If this iPod is hosed, I’m going with a much cheaper alternative next time around. Tell me what mp3 player you use and adore – the cheaper the better!

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

We are considering what to do with our (phone) land line. Currently we pay $40 a month, which includes unlimited long distance. Which would be a good price if we ever talked on the phone, but we really don’t (and if there’s a long distance call to be made, we can always use our cell phones). We’ve discussed going with the cheapest plan from Vonage, which would save us almost $20 a month. We’ve also discussed going with the cheapest AT&T plan, which we like because it’s not tied to the internet line, so if internet were to go down, we’d still have a phone line.

We’ve also discussed just getting rid of the land line completely and using our cell phones. But the idea of not having a land line makes me a bit nervous. We’ve been talking about it for about a month now and can’t seem to come to a decision. I don’t knowwwwwwwwwww. You’d think it’s not such a big decision, but I AM a master ditherer, so dither I shall.

I think I didn’t mention that my contract with T-M0bile was up last month, so I switched to Virgin Mobile. Except for the fact that I got an email from Virgin Mobile every fucking day for the first week expressing their excitement that I’d signed up with them, it’s going well. I got the 1000 text messages for $5/ month option, AND I got a phone with a QWERTY keyboard, and I’ve gotta say, it sure does make texting a whole lot easier. 1000 text messages is far more than I need, but it’s nice to have the option.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

It’s Spring, which means that Miz Poo has started finding and “killing” a toy, then drags it through the house, keening all the while. It’s cute at first, I’ll give you that, but holy CRAP after a while it’s like someone’s driving a steel pick through my eardrums.

She’s SO pleased with herself after she’s delivered her kill to whoever’s around, though, that it’s hard to tell her to FOR THE LOVE OF GOD PLEASE STOP.

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2009-03-24 (2)

The kittens have been named! Check ’em out over at L&H. Also, there’s a short movie.

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2009-03-24 (15)
Something about the way that daffodil leaf (?) is bisecting Mister Boogers’ nose makes him look particularly nostril-y, and it’s making me laugh.

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Previously
2008: And then they tried to say that I was calling Rick’s feet “dainty”, so in one short day I managed to insult everyone in the house.
2007: No entry.
2006: No entry.
2005: I. Am. PISSED.
2004: “I’m sorry,” I said. “I don’t believe I quite understand. Could you explain this “spoonful” word to me via pantomime again?”
2003: That, or she’s a stalker-reader.
2002: No entry.
2001: No entry.
2000: Some people just have a smack-me face, don’t they?

3/23/09

by @ Monday, March 23rd, 2009. Filed under Crooked Acres, Fostering, Life

This one made me laugh ’til I cried:

funny pictures of cats with captions
see more Lolcats and funny pictures

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First things first: I made two loaves of bread on Friday using the Amish White Bread recipe that Aimee sent me to (THANK YOU, AIMEE!!!), and I must say that that is some DAMN fine bread! And it couldn’t have possibly been any easier. I used the mixer right up to the point where it was time to put the dough in the bowl to rise, and I ate sandwiches all weekend long using the bread. SO GOOD.

It is a little sweeter than I’d like, though, so next time I’m going to use less sugar.

Which leads me to my question, bread baking gurus – if I reduce the amount of sugar that I use, do I need to adjust anything else in the recipe?

I very well might try making some of Angie’s beer bread next weekend.

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Saturday morning we ran out to do errands – mainly, to visit L0we’s and see if we couldn’t find a door mat to go by the computer room door. The one we had there wasn’t wide enough and I’ve been bitching about it for ages, so off to L0we’s we went. I ended up getting a small beige carpet that I’m already regretting – we track ten tons of shit in on our shoes and boots even after we wipe them on the outside door mat, and the beige shows every bit of the dirt that gets tracked in.

All I frickin’ want is a door mat that measures five feet long by, oh, four feet wide, that is dark and that can be vacuumed. Also, I don’t want to spend $100 for A GODDAMN DOOR MAT. Why is that so difficult to find? WHYYYYYY?

OH. I also got some storage bins – L0we’s sells 18-gallon storage bins made of 99% recycled material for less than $5 each. That’s a freakin’ BARGAIN, if you ask me.

So we came home and Fred went out to mow the lawn, and I came inside and started puttering around the house. I got all the humidifiers from all the parts of the house, cleaned them, then set them on the table on a towel to dry. When they’re dry I’ll pack them up in a storage container and put them upstairs in the garage until the Fall.

(Next Fall when I’m bitching about the lack of humidity, remind me they’re there, would you?)

Then I went into the laundry room, pulled everything down from atop the refrigerator and freezer, wiped them both down (the cat litter-caused dust up there was NASTY), then made a pile of stuff that needed to go into the garage for storage, and put the rest of the stuff back. I cleaned and organized the shelf unit in the laundry room, pulled everything out of the water heater closet, scrubbed the floor, and put everything back.

I was just at that point of my cleaning when the phone rang. It was the shelter manager asking if I wanted some kittens, and I was all “HELL YES!”, and she said she’d arrange it with the woman who had them and would call me back.

While I waited, I cleaned out the guest bedroom closet, carried a bunch of boxes upstairs to store in my closet, cleaned out both the closets in my room, cleaned out Fred’s closet, and was just getting the litter boxes set up in the kitten room (and shooing Newt out of the room – he’s taken to sleeping on the cat bed in there in the afternoons, lately) when the phone rang.

I left the house for the pet store, made it there in record time, and then the woman (another volunteer for the shelter) who’d picked up the kittens walked in a minute later.

You can go over to Love & Hisses to see the first pictures I got of them. They are SERIOUSLY cute – the only problem is that I always forget when they’re so small (they’re really just getting the hang of the litter box), you need to use regular clay litter for them (they tend to eat the litter at first because they are not known for their high intelligence), so I went over to the dollar store to buy litter.

Then I got the litter boxes switched over to smaller ones, and I sat and bonded with the kittens, and the little bitty runt was chewing and chewing and chewing on one piece of food for the longest time, and a lightbulb finally went off, and I realized that she didn’t yet have jaws strong enough to chew that stuff up. Luckily, I had some BabyCat (which is much smaller), and she was able to eat that. Then I gave them all some canned cat food, and they ate the hell out of that too.

Sunday morning I got up and hung out with the kittens for a while, and then made my grocery list and headed for Publix.

Honest to god, I wonder if anyone’s ever died from getting zapped by static electricity. I was in the cat food aisle and I happened to reach out and touch one of the shelves and the fucking zap HURT LIKE A MOTHERFUCKER. I felt my fucking HAIR MOVE from the shock.

IT IS SPRING AND IT IS SUPPOSED TO BE HUMID, AND I STRENUOUSLY OBJECT TO GETTING ZAPPED BY STATIC ELECTRICITY IN MARCH IN ALABAMA.

So Publix annoyed the shit out of me because they had NO canned kitten food. NONE. I wasn’t even looking for the fancy stuff, ANYTHING that was geared toward kittens would have been fine with me, just to get me through a couple of days. But, nay.

I had to go to Wal-Mart to get some canned kitten food, and then I went home.

At some point, I realized that I was pretty much out of BabyCat, and I did some thinking and remembered that a new pet store – P3t Dep0t – just opened near Publix recently. I thought, surely, given that they’re a PET STORE, they’d have either BabyCat or something similar, right? After noon, when I was pretty sure they’d be open, I went up there to check.

I do not know why the fuck it surprises me when I walk into a P3t Dep0t and find that it SUCKS, because I’ve been in two of them before and – surprise! They sucked! So why I was surprised to find that they have one tiny little aisle of cat food which did NOT include BabyCat, I don’t know.

Frankly, I have yet to find any pet store that is as good and carries the range of cat food that P3tSmart does. Why I bother to go anywhere else, I don’t know.

(Well, I do know – it’s a half hour drive to P3tSmart and only a 10 minute drive to P3t Dep0t.)

So I decided I had enough BabyCat to get me through ’til this morning, and I’ll be headed to Huntsville to stock up on it here in a little while.

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Also, my new kittens? Cutest things EVER.

(See more kitten pics over at L&H)

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Actually the weekend was kind of babycentric, now that I think about it. I was going out to my car yesterday morning when I saw Newt looking with great interest at something tiny. I went to investigate, and found a wee baby mouse.

It didn’t look injured (and it certainly didn’t look like it was past the point of saving), so I picked it up (yes! Picked it up with my own two bare hands! On purpose!) and brought it inside. Fred found a container to put it in and then I assumed that he put it in a dark place so it could recover.

When I got back from the grocery store, I found that he’d taken the container (a plastic container with the lid set on top so that air could get in and out) and put it on the kitchen counter. You know, the kitchen counter where the cats like to hang out? You know, where all it’d take is a firm smack from a cat paw to send the container tumbling to the floor so the mouse would fall out and the cats could all gather around and take turns eating it?

I’m sure that in a parallel universe, that did happen (or the mouse escaped and is currently living somewhere in the house), but in this universe, THANKFULLY, the cats didn’t even notice that there was living food set out all nice for them, and Fred and I determined that it was time to free the mouse, so Fred went and set it free behind the chicken yard.

(Of course, he accidentally DROPPED it first, but we won’t talk about that.)

2009-03-23 (2) 2009-03-23 (1)

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Wanna see what it’s like around here at Snackin’! Time!?


Snackin’ Time March 2009. from Robyn Anderson on Vimeo.

Pardon the camera work. I’m no professional, obviously.

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2009-03-23 (9)
“Seriously? More kittens? SERIOUSLY? What, am I not enough for you?”

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Previously
2008: No entry.
2007: No offers yet though, damnit.
2006: “Hookers and blow!” he crowed jubilantly.
2005: Also, there’s that whole pesky “dealing with people” thing, and I don’t like that sort of thing at ALL.
2004: The spud passed the test for her learner’s permit, THANKYAJEEZUS.
2003: No entry.
2002: No entry.
2001: Fred and I chose the names of our future child/ren way before we ever met – Seth Forrest and Samantha Jayne.
2000: On the other hand, I was shopping in Wal-Mart, wasn’t I? What’d I expect, diamonds and furs?

3/20/09

by @ Friday, March 20th, 2009. Filed under CAE, Crooked Acres, Life

Fred sent me the link to this article last week, and the things I find most amusing about it are (1) I make my own laundry detergent and use vinegar for fabric softener not because it’s cheaper, but because it’s better for the environment and (2) The breathless way they report that she cuts her lotion bottles in half to get the last bits of lotion out of there as if it’s the CRAZIEST, MOST FRUGAL thing they’ve ever heard of. I’ve been cutting my lotion bottles down for years to get the ten tons of lotion left in the bottle and have always just considered it a middle finger toward the lotion companies who think their customers will give up when they can’t easily get the leftover lotion out of the bottle.

I guess I was frugal (I was frugal!) when frugal wasn’t cooooooool.

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When Nance and Rick were here earlier this month, we played Catch Phrase, the game we LOVE (which we can thank Nance and Rick for introducing to us!). If you’ve never played the game, you get a word and have to give your teammates clues so they’ll guess what it is. It’s always a blast.

Anyway, I recorded one of our games, and if you want to know what it’s like when we play, you can hear it here, or right click on that link and download it to your hard drive, if you want. You’ll probably have to crank up your sound, I didn’t use any kind of fancy equipment. It’s me giving the clues first, then Rick, then Fred, then Nance, and so forth.

During one of the games, Rick got “Gene Roddenberry” but then he ran out of time. He shrugged and told Nance she wouldn’t have gotten it anyway, and when she found out it was Gene Roddenberry, she got annoyed (because, as she says, “I absolutely LOATHE nerds that act SUPERIOR about their NERDY ICONS.”). This is why Fred says she’s like a one-woman comedy show, because she was going off and we were all laughing our asses off at her. (She wants y’all to know it wasn’t real anger and not a fight, she just hates that shit.) Fred and I listened to it again last night, and were both laughing so hard we were crying. You can hear that here. (Again, sorry about the poor sound quality.)

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Michelle admitted:

I have, um *cough cough* 11. But I count your permanent AND your fosters, so you still beat me whenever you have fosters 😉

11 really is the maximum point for us. I think it just depends on the dynamic between the cats, personalities, how much open space you have for them to roam and stake as their territory, etc. They are not fighting, but we do have to break up little bickering-bullying sessions. I think it would be a little calmer if we only had 9 or 10, but when I try to think about who I would give away, it is just too difficult because each one of them adds a unique personality to the household (not to mention every last one of them is spoiled rotten).

As we currently do not have any fosters, Michelle’s got the Crazy Cat Blogger title for the time being!

I would really like to think that we’re going to stay at 10 cats, but I’ll never again say “This is it, we really can’t have more than X cats”, because it always comes back to bite me in the ass. The more cats you have when you add one more to the bunch, the longer the process takes, because the new cat has so many other cats to interact with, and some of them are more hysterical and hissy than others. I think I’ve said it before, but I really think it’s just in the past few months that Joe Bob has found his place in the tribe, which means it took about a year. I do think how nice it would be to have fewer cats sometimes (especially when they all feel the need to escort me from room to room), but I can’t say that I’d like to see any of the rotten little brats go, so I suppose we’re stuck.

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Before I started reading you, I had zero cats. Ever, in my life. And my husband hated cats. After reading you for a few years, now we have one cat and we love her, and maybe we might someday think about getting another one. So thank you for that!

You are ENTIRELY welcome, I’m glad to have suckered you in to the cat-owning world!

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And how does one pronounce bhut jolokia?

Myself I pronounce them “What’s the name of those really hot peppers you’re growing this summer, again?”, but according to a page I found on Google (and then closed), it’s pronounced Boot Joe Low Key Ah.

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Poor Fred! I’m surprised that he just didn’t leave the “spot” and use the opportunity to spin one of his hilarious stories about it.

He said he thought about taking a picture of it and putting it up on his site with “Goddamn it.” under the picture, but wasn’t sure anyone would get it!

I have worn my hair fairly short for years. Two years ago just before Christmas I went to a shop to get it trimmed. When I told the new hairdresser that she could cut it fairly short in the back, she picked up her electric shears and proceeded to buzz the back of my hair to the point that I couldn’t even get a hold of it! Too astonished to even say anything (what could be done, anyway), I paid for the cut and walked out. I chose to act as though it was precisely what I wanted and the looks and comments of my family at our Christmas get together were very amusing. It did give me the opportunity to stop coloring my hair since the back was mostly white and didn’t match the light beige blonde of the front and sides. Who knows how much longer I would have kept up the coloring? Always look on the bright side!

I told Fred that if I cut my hair really really short, I’d probably stop coloring it, at least for a while, and let the gray come in. (I’m a little relieved that he didn’t make a big stink about it when I backed out of cutting off my hair, to be honest. I’m not ready to go gray!)

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I watched that video without my headphones on, so maybe I’m missing something with no sound, but that was CREEPY AS HELL.

Awww, it’s Julie through the glass! And her mother’s watching her grow up and you’re supposed to realize how fast they grow up and get all teary-eyed!

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The comment on the time your doctor spent with you caught my attention. My sister lives near Huntsville, and she and her husband have been seeing a family practice doctor for 20+ years; even their son went there. Anyway, the last few times they either had appointments, she said the doctor seemed like his @ss was on fire, only spent about 5 minutes total with them. AND even told her husband, when his B.P. was too high, just not to check it very often. Have no idea what’s up with that these days.

This is probably entirely sexist of me, but I’ve found that the female doctors I’ve seen are always willing to spend a little more time with me. Well. Actually, now that I said that, I’m recalling that my weight loss surgery surgeon (did I mention I do not like that guy?) spends more time in the exam room with me than I’d like. If he just popped his head in and said hi and then went along his way, I’d be perfectly happy. But for the most part, the females (my PCP and my gynecologist) will sit and actually look through the chart and ask questions, whereas the majority of the male doctors I see are all “Here’s your hat, what’s your hurry.”

I can’t believe that a doctor would react to high blood pressure by telling a patient not to check it very often – that blows my mind!

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I seems like I read somewhere, and damned if I know where, that eventually, the loose skin will reabsorb. That it’ll take maybe a few years. Is that true? But where’s the fun in that…!

I think you may have read that on Fred’s site many years ago – I believe that’s what someone (the plastic surgeon? A dermatologist? I don’t remember!) told him. I don’t know that I believe it at all – though I suppose the only way to really disprove that is to stay the exact same weight for 7 years and see what happens skin-wise!

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Speaking of rude people — those that think it’s completely appropriate to come up to you and tell you how ugly they think your dog is. I mean, wtf? What can you say to that? “Um, thanks for sharing?”

You should totally say “Well, I guess you‘d know about ugly, wouldn’t you?”

Or is that too mean? (Or too subtle?)

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Here is a question for tomorrow, what did Fred’s coworkers think when he showed up to work bald & wearing a hat – which I’m guessing is out of the ordinary for him since he had to go buy some – did they think he had come down with a sudden illness or pulled a Britney?

He actually went into the offices of the two who would tend to mock him, took off his cap, and said “Get it over with now” then told them what had happened. They didn’t have much to say – what fun is it to mock someone when they’ve given you permission to do so?

Also I had a thought that amused me and thought I’d share, I even had to keep myself from giggling aloud and scaring my fellow bus passengers this morning. Fred didn’t have to shave the rest of his hair off, he could have just worn those sassy hats you occasionally put on the cats & take pictures of over the bald spot

I think it was sometime Tuesday that Fred called me and said “I just realized that I could have worn a cap to cover up the bald spot instead of shaving my whole head!” HEE. I would like to see him with the little pink straw hat on, personally.

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Robyn, all you have to do is look at your last year’s entry on your sister’s birthday, you always mention it : )

Ha – I do, don’t I? My mother pointed out that Debbie’s birthday is the easiest to remember, since she was born in 1970. Which I perfectly well know, but did it occur to me to think of it that way? Of course not!

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Is Mister Boogers ok with sleeping on a PINK bed? I suppose he would tolerate it while sighing and shooting hate rays.

Mister Boogers is secure in his masculinity and doesn’t mind sleeping on a pink bed – it’s no worse than the purple bed he was sleeping on, after all!

(Also, pink goes nicely with his pretty blue-gray fur.)

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As the main cook do you make things you hate but Fred loves to please him? I am selfish if I hate I don’t make it.

I do make some stuff that Fred likes, but I don’t do it often, and I make myself something else to eat while I’m doing it. Boiled okra is something he likes and that I can no longer stand (though oven-baked okra is fine with me), and I’ll boil him up a pot of it every so often.

I did make – and canned – quite a bit of salsa the summer before last, and it was all for him, because I don’t do hot salsa, and he doesn’t see the point in salsa that doesn’t singe the tastebuds right off your tongue.

I’ll make anything he wants me to make, really, all he has to do is request it, but when I put him on the spot – “What do you want to have for dinner next week?” when I’m making the grocery list – he never comes up with anything I won’t eat.

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the arborio rice is worth it and the store brand isn’t too expensive. i know wegmans and trader joes sell their own brand.

I really need to get me to Trader Joe’s, I have a list a mile long of stuff I want to buy from there!

And yes, you damn pretentious foodie freaks, I will try the Arborio rice just to see the difference. And then I’ll give it a try with a REAL (ie, not the microwave) risotto recipe and see how that goes. (I knew y’all were going to tell me I need to use Arborio rice, and I knew I’d cave almost immediately. I suspect I wanted to be convinced!)

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that unknown chicken looks kinda like an Ameraucana to me with the chin fluff and all.

Now that you mention it, Fred did come across a picture of an Americauna rooster that looked just like our unknown roosters. I’ll be interested to see what they look like when they get older (though I don’t believe they’re on the short list to be permanent residents, if y’know what I mean, given the large number of roosters we currently have).

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And, Fred thinks rice is pretentious? Is he southern? Growing up (in Georgia), we had rice and gravy every Sunday, and “xyz on rice” was the basis of, I’d say, at least half homemade meals. I actually tend to see things like tiny new potatoes as pretentious, since we hardly ever had them. Hee.

No, he thinks risotto is pretentious because it’s something they show on Hell’s Kitchen and it requires care and attention and you can’t just throw it on the stove and walk away and expect it to finish itself.

(Although the microwave version sure is easy to do.)

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Have you or anyone you know bought an Amazon gift card for themselves? I see things I want there but some items are only $2.99 & I don’t want to use a credit card for such a small sum. I know it’s a stupid question but I just wondered how other people managed to make small purchases.
I was considering buying a gift card for 40 dollars. What do you think?

I think it makes sense – I haven’t done that with an Amazon gift card (I can alllllways find more stuff to add to my order on Amazon!), but I do it with an iTunes gift card, because when I buy stuff at iTunes, it’s always one or two songs or a TV show, and I hate seeing the small charges come through on the debit card. With an iTunes card, it’s a one-time $25 expenditure, and I don’t have to see a $2 charge on my statement when I buy stuff from them.

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Males and those who have no interest in hearing about a cure for yeast infections (rather than the harsh chemicals you can get at the drugstore), look away.

Robyn, I was reading one of your old entries, from July 04, I believe (I am working the graveyard shift this week which is very boring and your journal has provided HOURS of giggly entertainment so far this week, so thanks for that btw!), in which you mentioned the horror of using Monistat for yeast infections. Maybe since then you’ve found something that works better, but I thought I’d share my home remedy that has proven to work BEAUTIFULLY. I fill a 10cc syringe (which I have easy access to since I’m a nurse at the hospital) with plain, unsweetened, unflavored yogurt, and “inject” it up in there. I have to inject it lying down, and then usually STAY lying down afterward, because once it heats up to my body temperature it gets very runny and likely spills out. So often times when I do this, it’s at night and I’m wearing underwear I care nothing about. The last couple times I did this, though, I inserted a tampon behind it to “plug it up,” and it seemed to do the trick! I even dared to venture out of the house like that, and had no spillage issues. The active cultures in the yogurt just eat up the yeast. I usually only have to give myself one treatment and the yeast infection is gone. Two treatments if it’s a particularly harsh infection. But, y’know, it’s way cheaper than the OTC crap (which DOES burn and inflame and irritate and itch), it’s easier, and it’s faster. I don’t often recommend inserting food into people’s body parts, but in this case it has a great medicinal effect! I read online somewhere about somebody recommending to freeze the yogurt in some sort of cylindrical shape (not sure what she used to do that) to make insertion easier, not to mention its lovely cooling effect. Haven’t tried that yet myself, but I’m keeping it in mind.

I once got caught visiting a friend out of town when a monster of a yeast infection came on. I had no syringes at my disposal, but I thought maybe the pharmacy would have some, so we went to a Kroger & I asked the pharmacist if he had any 10cc syringes. He said Yeah, I think so, and went off to look for some, and came back with 2 or 3, but before he handed them to me he asked if it was for giving my pet a medicine or something like that (I guess he wanted to make sure i wasn’t some sort of druggie) and I just looked him right in the eye and said “Oh, no, it’s for me, I’m having gynecological issues.” He kind of stammered “Oh–ok” and awkwardly handed me the syringes. Hee! I love how embarrassing people usually gets them to do whatever you want them to!

I don’t get yeast infections all that often unless antibiotics are involved, but I suspect that this tip will come in handy for one of y’all out there!

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2009-03-20 (1)
He’s a pretty, pretty Tom.

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Previously
2008: I am a peeing machine.
2007: That just screams “Monday”, doesn’t it?
2006: “I prefer ‘va-jay-jay’,” he said almost prissily.
2005: No entry.
2004: No entry.
2003: And why is it that I ALWAYS have my period when it’s time to leave on vacation? Why? Whyyyyyyyyy?
2002: I don’t want to have to think about Ozzy having a boner, thankyouverymuch.
2001: Fortunately, I have many more lazing-around-the-house-reading hours in the day than he does.
2000: I didn’t think cats did such things once they were fixed.

3/19/09

by @ Thursday, March 19th, 2009. Filed under Crooked Acres, Life

2009-03-19 (1)

Happy, happy birthday to my baby sister, who turns 39 today!

(This year, I had to subtract my birth year from the current year to figure out my own age, then subtract two years from that to come up with her age. Probably next year I’ll have to call someone and ask them what year it is.)

Happy birthday, Deb! May you have a day that does not involve cat barf or poop in any way, shape or form!

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Fred and I watch Hell’s Kitchen every week, I don’t know if I’ve mentioned that. One of the dishes they make regularly on Hell’s Kitchen that I’d never had before is risotto. Someone’s always fucking up the risotto, sending Chef Ramsay into apoplectic rages wherein he bellows at whichever hapless fuckup is in his crosshairs.

When I was reading a magazine last week, I came across a recipe for mushroom risotto that didn’t look too terribly difficult – in fact, it was made in the microwave. I asked Fred if he’d eat it if I made it, and he moaned and groaned and rolled his eyes, then said he’d try it.

He’s not a big fan of rice, and also I’m pretty sure he thinks it’s pretentious.

So yesterday I roasted a chicken, made vegetable medley (yellow summer squash sauteed with an onion and cherry tomatoes (the yellow squash and cherry tomatoes came from our garden last year and have been sitting in the freezer)), and made the risotto as well.

I have to say – that risotto is some DAMN good stuff. Even Fred said that it was really good, and he even got himself a small second helping.

The recipe is here.

I may toss some baby peas in next time I make it, because I do love peas (my friend Liz, on the other hand, regards peas as a personal insult when she comes across them).

Also, the recipe calls for “Arborio or long-grain rice.” Save yourself six bucks and buy the long-grain rice. I Googled Arborio rice and found that some people insist risotto just isn’t the same if you don’t use Arborio, but fuck if I’m going to spend that much on any kind of rice that doesn’t involve gold flakes.

Now if I could only find a super-simple recipe for Beef Wellington – that’s the other dish they always make on Hell’s Kitchen that I’ve never had and want to try.

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Nance will be SO proud of me (or will roll her eyes, more likely) because I finally FINALLY sat my ass down and used my sewing machine yesterday. A year after I got it, I finally made something on the damn thing.

What’d I make? Cat beds, of course. DUH.

2009-03-19 (4)
I picked up this basket a few months ago with the intention of putting a cat bed in the bottom, since the cats like to curl up in confined spaces. I made the bed and put it in the basket and thus far the cats have shown no interest, but it’s still early yet.

2009-03-19 (2)
I got these beds at Big Lots last year when I visited Nance and Rick, and the centers come out, but when you wash them the insides kind of get bunched to one side. So I made new inserts for the beds – two of them, anyway. I would have used purple if I’d had any purple fabric to use, but I didn’t, so I didn’t.

2009-03-19 (3)
Cat bed for the set of stairs Fred made to sit under one of the windows in the front room. The cats like to sleep there, but it’s been driving me crazy that none of the cat beds we had fit the space. So I finally made a bed for the space. It’s probably too floofy, none of the cats have shown any interest in sleeping there, but like I said – it’s early yet. Someone will give it a try sooner or later.

If I feel like it later, I may make some pee pads to put in the cats’ favorite places to pee (the washer gets sprayed every now and again I DO NOT KNOW WHY, and the baseboard in the computer room bathroom gets it now and then, too. UGH.). I currently put towels there to protect the surfaces, but I’d rather not use towels, even if they’re old and crappy ones. Also, I need to make a cat bed to put in the old Coca Cola crate we bought in Tennessee. I was going to make a bed for that yesterday, but decided to scrub the crate down first – it was pretty dirty – and now I want to let it dry before I bring it back in the house.

I’m not particularly good at sewing – I have an inability to sew a straight line, let alone cutting a straight line – but honestly, I’m making cat beds and pee pads, and who the hell is ever going to be close enough to critique my sewing technique, right?

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Scenes from around Crooked Acres:

2009-03-19 (5)
George regards his chewy.

2009-03-19 (6)
George makes sure no one’s coming to steal his chewy.

2009-03-19 (12)
“This are MY chewy, Lady.”

2009-03-19 (9)
The handing-out of the chewies. (Note Gracie’s green lower lip.)

2009-03-19 (7)
The chickens enjoy some leftover pasta.

2009-03-19 (10)
At almost 6 weeks old, this bunch has hit their gawky & goony stage. The two chicks in the middle with the tiny mohawks are half crested Polish and half who knows what. I can’t wait to see what they look like when they’re grown!

2009-03-19 (11)
The black silkie has gone broody. She is an angry, pecky little thing in the best of times. When she’s broody, she’s twice as angry, and she pecks HARD. She also gets super pissed-off when I pet her. Brat. I’m sure she’s got some rage going on right now – Fred put her in a cage to break her of the broodiness, and they always hate that.

2009-03-19 (13)
I don’t know what kind of chicken this is – it’s one of the November bunch we got from the hatchery, and that was just kind of a mishmash. We thought it might be a Wyandotte at first, but now we have no idea. Fred thinks this one’s a rooster, though we haven’t caught it in the act of crowing or getting some lovin’, so who knows?

2009-03-19 (14)
Michelle is such a good head rooster. He’s McLovin‘s son and he acts a lot like him, but he’s a lot less prone to clutching his pearls and running around in circles than McLovin was.

2009-03-19 (15)
Don’t know what this one is, either, but he’s definitely a rooster. He’s started up with attempting to crow. They’re always funny when they first start, they sound so rusty.

2009-03-19 (16)
Mr. Friendly isn’t as friendly as he used to be. I guess he’s growing up and has better things to do than being held by the humans.

2009-03-19 (17)
One of the chicks we hatched from Amish eggs at some point in the past (I don’t even remember where these chickens come from, half the time). He’s a rooster – they’re always the prettiest.

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2009-03-19 (18)
Joe Bob is all “No dude, I swear it! I had it by the tail and then it got away and ran over in that direction. It was HUGE, it was like the size of a kitten!”
And Newt is all “I do not believe you.”

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Previously
2008: That Pioneer Punk is a bad, bad influence.
2007: I am such a prize, I really am.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.
2004: “Have you noticed that it smells like the bodies of fifteen [gentlemen of Chinese descent] laying in a pile in the ditch, rotting?”
2003: Always something, you know?
2002: “I’m starving to death. Meh. STARVING, I’m STARVING. Meh.”
2001: My baby’s growing up!
2000: No entry.

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