It has been so very gorgeous this week – sunny every day and in the 60s and 70s – that the fact it’s supposed to cloud up and might rain this afternoon isn’t bringing me down at all. I’ve done laundry every day this week (bedsheets and clothes on Monday, towels Tuesday, more clothes yesterday) … Continue reading “5/21/09”

It has been so very gorgeous this week – sunny every day and in the 60s and 70s – that the fact it’s supposed to cloud up and might rain this afternoon isn’t bringing me down at all. I’ve done laundry every day this week (bedsheets and clothes on Monday, towels Tuesday, more clothes yesterday) just so I could hang it all out to dry, so that if we have another rainy spell, I can put on my line-dried clothes and smell like sunshine.

(I’m hoping like hell that rainy season has come to an end. I saw a cartoon somewhere that said “April showers bring May showers”, and I showed it to Fred and he laughed bitterly.)

Yesterday I left the house mid-morning to run errands. I had a list of stuff to get at Sam’s Club, and I wanted to swing by Target and Bed, Bath and Beyond. I tried to stop at Bed, Bath and Beyond on my way to Sam’s, but it was 9:00 when I got there, and BB&B doesn’t open ’til 9:30, so off to Sam’s I went. The one thing I really like about having a membership at Sam’s through Fred’s company is that it’s considered a business membership, so instead of having to wait ’til 10 for the store to open the way the unwashed masses do, I can go into the store anytime after 7. It’s a LOT less busy before 10, believe you me.

I wandered around the store, got almost everything on my list (I guess Sam’s doesn’t carry plain old ammonia – or if it does, I’m not looking in the right place. I assumed it would be with the cleaning stuff.), picked up a few things that weren’t, and was out of there a little before 10.

I tried to fill up my gas tank at Sam’s, but for some reason the pump wasn’t reading my membership card, so I quietly told it to go fuck itself and left. I did get gas at the station across from Target, then stopped at Bed, Bath and Beyond. The last time I was there, a few weeks ago, I impulse-purchased a spray bottle of Yankee Candles Good Air, and I have to say – that stuff can take care of a large stank in a hurry. I wanted to get another bottle for upstairs (because when a stank needs taking care of, there’s no time to go wandering downstairs for the bottle!), so I went in, grabbed the bottle, and stood in line.

There were three people in line in front of me, but the person at the very front of the line was doing something complicated, apparently, and after five minutes with no forward motion, I put the spray bottle back and left.

At Target I got everything on my list and then some, then got in line. There was only one person in front of me (or rather, one couple), but I’m not sure how they could have possibly moved any slower. They did the MOST annoying thing, the thing that drives me batshit every time – they waited to write out the check until after they knew what the total was. GOD I HATE THAT. I wanted to snatch away their checkbook and beat them with it.

But I refrained.

I left Target, and by the time I got home, it was after noon. I unloaded the car, put stuff away, went out to check for eggs, hang out with the dogs, ate lunch, and then it was time to snooze on the couch in front of Oprah.

Those couches, the ones we got a year ago from Fred’s parents, are THE most comfortable couches to sleep on. They’re so much more comfortable than the old couches, the cheap ones we had, with the recliners in each end. I mean, we miss having recliners sometimes and have talked about (one day) getting recliners to put where one of the couches is, but for now, you can’t beat a snooze on the blue couches. When there’s a kitten or two piled up on top of you, so much the better.

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A few years ago, I bought these small cages that you put seed cakes in and hang outside for the birds. They’re similar to suet cages, only much larger. I bought the seed cakes to put in the cages at Target or the pet store or Wal-Mart. When I first started buying the seed cakes, they were less than $5 for a 2.5-pound seed cake. Since then, due to the economyyyyyyy, I suppose, they’ve gone up. I can’t find them for less than $6 a seed cake, and usually they’re more than that.

So I figured, why not make my own? I did some extensive searching online and had a hard time finding something, because most of the recipes I was finding were for suet cakes, and while I do have a suet feeder and will likely be making my own suet at some point in the future, that’s not what I was looking for.

Finally, I came up with two recipes to try – one involves just gelatin and water, the other involves flour, water, corn syrup and maybe a packet of gelatin. I tried the first one, the gelatin and water, stirred in some bird seed, let it set, and put the seed cake out in the basket to see what would happen. Wild birds are like cats sometimes, it seems – they don’t like new things. For a few days the birds ignored the seed cake, and then slowly they started picking at it. I made another seed cake the same way, but used a different blend of seeds (this one had raisins and peanuts in it) and put that one in the seed cage on the tree I think of as the squirrel tree. If I keep the seed cage and the suet ball feeder filled on the squirrel tree, they’ll pretty much leave the bird feeders alone, which means they don’t knock ten tons of bird seed onto the ground.

The squirrels are not like the cats and birds – it took them no time at all to decimate that seed cake.

Monday, I made seed cakes using the flour, water, and corn syrup recipe. I put one seed cake in the feeder that the birds use, and one in the feeder that the squirrels use. So far, the squirrels have picked at the seed cake in their feeder (though they seem to prefer the peanut butter suet balls, and who can blame ’em?), and the birds have ignored their seed cake, which is pretty much par for the course.

Cost-wise, I think the flour recipe is less expensive – the recipe makes more seed cakes than the gelatin recipe, not that gelatin is all that expensive, about $1.40 around here for a box of plain gelatin (you use the whole box). I guess I’ll wait and see what the end result is regarding the seed cakes – if the birds completely ignore the flour recipe seed cake, I’ll stick with the gelatin version.

Both recipes are here.

And while I’m mentioning recipes, I found a recipe for filling for George and Gracie’s Kongs while I was surfing around. Usually I just put plain yogurt, a dollop of peanut butter, and some chopped-up carrots in their Kongs, and they’re perfectly happy. (BOY they love their Kongs! On the one or two evenings a week when they see me coming, carrying their Kongs, they get extra excited!) But since I don’t want them to get bored, I thought I’d try something new.

They liked the new filling well enough – but honestly, I think I could fill the Kongs with dirt and ice, and they’d be just as thrilled. It’s less the filling than the challenge, I think.

The Kong filling recipe is here.

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The girls are gearing up to go to PetSmart tomorrow, even though they don’t know it. I’m spending as much time as possible picking them up and kissing them (they are SO kissable!), and yesterday Bessie gave me this look like “Seriously, lady. What is your issue? You’re messing up my fur!”

Yeah, poor babies. It’s a rough life!

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Snoozin’ girlies.

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It just stuns me that Miz Poo puts up with the kittens snuggling with her (or at least sharing the same cat bed). After all these years of fostering, I think they’re starting to wear her down.

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I’m not sure why it is, but I think that kittens with their ears back are the cutest things on earth. Closely followed by hissing kittens. Is there anything less scary than a hissing kitten? I think not!

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Bessie, sun-drunk.

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Mister Boogers wants to know why that kitten keeps following him around.

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I don’t know what they were looking at, but check out the crazy eyes on Bessie!

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2008: These pigs, I’ve gotta say, are coming in handy as garbage disposals on legs.
2007: No entry.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.
2004: We’re off to Memphis.
2003: Possum #2.
2002: Mean mommy.
2001: No entry.
2000: No entry.