10-30-09 – Friday

Vote for Suzanne! Good Mood Gig from SAM-e   * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *   I’d ordinarily do a little bit of an entry before the comment-answering begins, but man – there just isn’t … Continue reading “10-30-09 – Friday”

Vote for Suzanne!

Vote for Me
Good Mood Gig from SAM-e


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I’d ordinarily do a little bit of an entry before the comment-answering begins, but man – there just isn’t shit going on ’round these parts. How about some randomness?

The house is a mess. I vacuumed the downstairs last night for the first time since Sunday, and was appalled at all the crap the Dyson picked up. (And I didn’t even vacuum the guest bedroom! I didn’t want to traumatize the baby kittens.)

I made a batch of Sweet-Hot Habanero sauce last night, and it smelled so good that I think I’m going to make the sauce without habaneros for myself.

Made another batch of Caramel-Apple Jam. It’s so popular, I might have to just keep it as a regular feature on the jam page. I’m going to make Caramel-Apple turnovers again this weekend to use up the partial jars I end up with at the end of each batch. I suspect they will be super tasty.

Took Sugarbutt and two of the Wonkas to the vet. They all got fecals (diarrhea for the kittens, blood in the litter box from Sugarbutt) and none of the fecals turned up anything at all. Had a long discussion with the vet about fleas and how – since here in Alabama the weather pretty much encourages flea growth from April on – the problem isn’t so much that Advantage and Frontline aren’t working, but that the environment (ie, house and yard) needs to be treated to stop them from growing. Did you know that fleas don’t generally hop from animal to animal, that once they set up house on an animal and find it hospitable, they stay there? I had no idea. I thought they were roaming little motherfuckers! Bought some spray from the vet’s office. I haven’t seen a single flea since we treated the Cookies last week, but I’ve gotten paranoid about it. (Tip: If you’re looking for something to spray your house with to discourage fleas, look for something with “insect growth regulator.”)

Motherfucking tiny little ants discovered there was a corn syrup bottle in the cupboard that I hadn’t properly cleaned last time I made seed cakes for the squirrels, and threw a par-tay. I had to empty out the cabinet, scrub it down, and Fred sprayed a trail of ant poison across their trail. I opened the cabinet later that day, and there were dead ants everywhere. It was like the ant version of the opening of The Stand. Two days later, they’re still stomping across the poison and dying, then landing on the counter. I’m wiping up ten to twenty ants several times a day. (Thank god they’re nowhere near the area where I prepare food.) What I want to know is HOW THE HOLY FUCK did they stumble across that corn syrup? What were they LOOKING for? (Corn syrup, apparently!) Do ants just randomly send out scouts all over my kitchen all the time and I simply never notice? At least they were those tiny little ants and not the big juicy ones. Gah, I hate those big ants. They creep me out.

After my bragging yesterday about not being fazed by wasps, one flew at my face yesterday, and I nearly dropped dead of a heart attack.

I got into the car yesterday to go to the vet, and thought “Why does my car smell like MEAT? What the FUCK?” It wasn’t until I got into the car to come home from the vets that I realized it wasn’t meat I was smelling. It was vinegar. I went to Sam’s the other day, picked up a box of two gallon-size jugs of white vinegar, and one of them leaked a bit in the back of my car. (Both bottles are still sitting in my car because it was raining when I got home from Sam’s and I don’t unload the car in the rain except for the stuff that needs to go into the freezer.) I’m not sure why I thought it smelled like meat. At least vinegar doesn’t leave a stink behind.

Every time I type “Sam’s”, I think of Sam’s, and it’s making me crave a sub and a whoopie pie.

Fred came in from the chicken yard yesterday and said “I sure am tired of shitty litter boxes.” He’d come through the laundry room, so I assumed someone had befouled one of the three litter boxes in there. I said, “Oh, sorry. Did someone stink it up in there?” and he went on to rant a little more. Which is when I realized he meant “nest boxes”, not litter boxes. Some of the chickens have taken to sleeping in the nest boxes (they’re not supposed to. Those nest boxes are for egg laying. They’re SUPPOSED to sleep on the roosts like normal chickens.) and left lots of poop behind, which means that after we gather eggs, we have to clean off the poopy ones. I’ve done funner things.

I’ve said the sentence “Did you just wipe your BUTT on me?!” more times in the last week than you could ever imagine. Last night I said it to Mike when we were sitting in with the Wonkas before bed time, and Fred laughed and said “I assure you, I did NOT!”

Tomorrow’s our 11th anniversary. Fred told me last night that for my anniversary present, maybe he’d put a coat of polyurethane on the pantry (which is still sitting out in the garage). I’m hoping maybe the second coat of polyurethane could be my Christmas present, and then for my birthday, perhaps we could move it into the house! A girl can dream.

I am tired of the motherfucking rain. I could use a good year-long drought PLEASE.


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LMAO over your 2004 comment…
“In case you were wondering, we are officially Crazy Cat People. We have 8 cat beds in this house and only four cats. How fucked up is that?”

Wanna do a recount?

I recall that wayyyyy back when we got Spanky (he’s 13 now!), Fred fretted about how many cats we had – and we only had three. Then we went up to four and we were all “This is SO many cats! How can people LIVE with more cats than this?!” I refuse to say that we’ll never get any more cats, because every time I say that, we end up with like 3 more.

One day I’ll get up and go through the house and count cat beds. But I’m a little afraid to find out how many we have.


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Love the cookie names for the new little guys, so cute. Have you ever used candy bar names?
I’m the momma of “Snickers Nelson” and he suggests you sometime in the future use these:

Snickers – Baby Ruth – Starburst – Skittles – Tootsie – Gum drop – jelly bean – Kit Kat – Hershey – Gum Drop

I’ve never personally used candy bar names, but I’m pretty sure Snickers and Twix have been used by the shelter in the past. I’ll save the rest of those names for a future litter, though. I really like the idea of naming a cat “Kit Kat”!


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How much do I love it that 1999’s entry is Why We Don’t Need Another Cat, by Fred. Har!


I noticed the same thing! I went back and read Fred’s letter….Fred, what say you now about those reasons you listed 10 years ago???

I haven’t even discussed this with Fred, but I think his answer would be along the lines of “Shut up.” 🙂


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Jake and Elwood are so cute. I am not sure what you call it… the rounded part that sticks out with their nose and mouth… the muzzle?!?!? but theirs look especially pronounced. Is it bigger and rounder than most or is just the way they look in pictures?

It should not surprise you that I subscribe to Cat Fancy magazine, and in just the past few days I was reading a back issue, and discovered that that part of their face is called the “whisker pad.” Makes sense, doesn’t it?

I think that their whisker pads are definitely more rounded than the average cat’s whisker pads, especially Jake’s. That’s what makes him look like such a lunatic, I suspect!


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You must be the champion of all bottle-feeders! I’ve done that for 5 different kittens in my life & I’m not very successful. If I ever get one again, I’m calling you!

Oh, let me tell you. When they refuse to latch on to the nipple and just bite at it and then act like they’re starving, it is SO frustrating. The Cookies are the first batch that nursed properly (though the Wonkas got it after a few days) and now it’s a crapshoot as to whether they’ll latch on and nurse or just bite the nipple. We’ve started trying to get them to eat food, but they couldn’t be less interested. I shoved a bit of food in Hydrox’s mouth yesterday and he made the MOST disgusted little face. I love it when kittens make the disgusted face, it’s so exaggerated.


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And something I’ve been drifting back to over and over in the last few weeks, so what the hell… I just hope this comes off in the spirit in which it is intended and not as an assy question. (Remember: I was traumatized by kitten-in-pain dreams last night! Go easy on me!)

I didn’t read you for very long prior to your move to Crooked Acres, so I don’t know what your eating/cooking/food/activity habits were like then. But I am constantly amazed now to read about all the cooking and various types of food prep you do – canning, freezing, etc. (My hand to God, I thought about making toast for breakfast the other morning but it was just too much work. You made homemade jam before breakfast. That broke my brain.) And then of course there’s all the activity and exertion that comes with managing the various animals and grounds – sloppin’ the hogs, feeding the chickens, fighting off the turkeys, herding the cats, all that.

Meanwhile, one of the doctors I work for has just talked a patient out of having weight reduction surgery because – in addition to her having several existing medical conditions which make her a bad candidate for any kind of surgery – he said that there are some indicators that it’s not the permanent fix that people think it will be, that five or more years after surgery a lot of people have regained a significant percentage of the weight they lost.

Now, I don’t know whether or not that’s true, but its accuracy is irrelevant to what I’m thinking about. Which is this: Do you think, if you had moved to Crooked Acres without having had the WLS, that your new lifestyle would have resulted in significant weight loss over time, and the maintenance of that weight loss? Or do you think that you wouldn’t be able to do the things you do now without having lost the weight in the first place? (Or something completely different..?)

I often think that if I could change one or two habits, that would make me healthier enough to then change one or two more, and then… – but I wonder, in your particular case, which you think is more of a cause and which is more an effect – or if you think there’s a cause/effect thing at all.

This is what I think – I think that if I’d still weighed 300 or more pounds when we bought this house, there’s no way I could have physically done all I’ve done over the past three years. I wouldn’t have felt safe standing on a ladder, I don’t think I could have painted all those rooms and all that trim, I don’t know that I could have mowed the yard with the push mower. I think I would have attempted all that, but my size was literally holding me back from everything I wanted to do.

That said, I should point out that most of the hog-slopping, chicken-feeding, and turkey-wrangling is done by Fred. I don’t feel like I lead a particularly active life, but I do think it’s more active than it was before we moved here.

Really, I don’t know – I don’t think that the lifestyle change would have led to significant weight loss, but who knows?


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Oh! thought I’d remind you, tonight on Bravo is the Atlanta Housewives reunion, suppose to be lots of screaming and drama drama drama….Which one of the housewives shows do you like the best ?

I double-checked, but my DVR was actually set up to tape the reunion, so I’ll be watching that later today!

I have a soft spot for the O.C. Housewives, though I’m not sure if it’s because it’s a better show or just because they’ve been around so long. In second place would be New York, and the New Jersey ladies are in third place. I don’t think that Atlanta is that interesting, frankly – I’ve fast forwarded through most of Nene’s “Who’s my daddy?” story because I find it BO.RING. I’ve also fast forwarded through most of Lisa’s as well, because her “Who’s your teammate? I’m your teammate!” shtick gets on my nerves. I’ve gotta say, Kandi and Kim have been the most interesting this year. I hope Kandi’s around for the next season – she’s the only one on that show who’s not a complete idiot.


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Mike and Violet are suffering from diarrhea, I’m sad to report. I took them to the vet to have a fecal test done, and they didn’t find anything at all. I’ve started them on Slippery Elm and Forti-Flora, and if they’re not better by Monday, back they’ll go. I’m hoping that if things aren’t better by Monday, I can get a good fecal sample here and run it up to the vet, rather than having to put the babies through that trauma again.

Not fond of having a fecal sample taken, to say the least. Can’t say as I blame them!

Such a little worrywart.

Gus, contemplative.


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Yesterday, after my run to the vet and back, I was eating breakfast, and I suddenly heard the Cookies get especially vocal. It sounded like there might be a problem, so I went and cracked the door to the Cookie room open, and saw the kittens in their cage just sitting there howling. But… there didn’t seem to be quite enough kittens in the cage. I did a quick count, realized that one was missing, and stepped into the room.

Skipping across the floor, super proud of himself, was Keebler. As it turns out, the Cookies are still small enough to squeeze through the cage bars. It’s a tight fit, but a determined kitten can do surprising things, and it appears Keebler had decided he had places to go.

I immediately became worried that one of them would try to squeeze through the cage and get stuck, or they’d change their minds and try to pull their heads back through the cage, and their head would pop clean off and go bouncing across the floor, spilling marshmallow fluff all over the place.

So we’ve started leaving the cage door open. At bedtime we did put them in the cage just because I feel safer with them contained (like they’ll be safer, I should say. Not that their wandering around the room at night somehow threatens my well-being. Just my sanity!) Most of the time, once we leave the room, they eventually end up back in the cage, curled up and sound asleep. When I go in there, they all spill out of the cage and come howling at me.

It’s rough to try to feed one kitten at a time when the other four are crawling all over you, trying to steal the bottle from whoever’s being fed, and clawing at your hand because they are STARVING. I solved that issue by taking them one at a time up onto the bed. The other kittens can’t get up onto the bed, so it works out pretty well.

I bought this Snuggle Kittie last year when it was half-price at Petsmart. It’s got a little “heart” that runs off two watch batteries that fits into a pocket on the bottom of the cat and sounds like (or is supposed to sound like) a mother’s heart beat. I figured sooner or later I’d have kittens who were small enough to appreciate it. The Wonkas were completely uninterested in it, except for Gus, who used it as a bed. The Cookies, on the other hand, loved it immediately. They snuggle up to it every night – in fact, when we first got them, they’d nuzzle up to the Snuggle Kittie, need on it, and purr like mad. It’s a little sad, actually, but also very sweet. Every now and then one or the other of the kittens will flop across it and it’s so cute I can barely stand it.

Pink’s a loner. She spends a lot of time off by herself (though when I’m in the room, she seems happiest curled up in my lap). Everyone else was sleeping in the cage, but Pink was curled up on this cat bed in the middle of the floor. She needs her space, that one.

“Um, hey… Someone said there’s a bottle around here?”

Hydrox sometimes sleeps with his eyes open and it CREEPS ME OUT.

“Uh, hi. Did you say there was a bottle up here? Because I could use one. RIGHT NOW.”


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I love it that even when they’re all grown up, Tommy and Sugarbutt still snuggle from time to time.


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2008: Hint: throwing extra adjectives into a book summary doesn’t actually make it sound more interesting.
2007: “Jesus christ, LENNY. I’m not going to PET THE DEAD SQUIRREL.”
2006: Isn’t it nice that I named cats that aren’t mine?
2005: No entry.
2004: List of fives.
2003: (Also, Nance called me “nice.” That bitch!)
2002: But I don’t guess that introspection is the forte of that particular diva.
2001: Who tells stories about you?
2000: This morning, red and goopy.
1999: (Side note: I did nothing, and that just pisses me off. I wish I could go back and smack the shit out of that jerk. I hope his life is hellish).

10/29/09 – Thursday

A couple of people have asked why the SAM-e voting thing is no longer at the top of my page. Basically, I lost interest. The voting has been going on and on and ON and isn’t slated to end until November 3rd or 6th (I don’t remember which), and then there’s a whole second section … Continue reading “10/29/09 – Thursday”

A couple of people have asked why the SAM-e voting thing is no longer at the top of my page.

Basically, I lost interest. The voting has been going on and on and ON and isn’t slated to end until November 3rd or 6th (I don’t remember which), and then there’s a whole second section to the “competition” where you have to make a video and people vote AND the SAM-e people get a say in the matter. So it’s not a popular vote sort of thing, it’s a popular vote AND the SAM-e people deciding who would be the best spokesperson for their supplement (which may be the best thing since sliced bread as far as I know; I haven’t bothered to research it at all), and I’m stretched kind of thin between the kittens and the two blogs (though to be fair, all I do most of the time over at Love & Hisses is cut and paste what I wrote about the kittens here), so I’ve lost interest.

Also, I might find it hard to be THAT positive all the time. Sometimes a girl’s gotta bitch, right?

I say we all vote for Suzanne McMinn. I’d really like to see her get the job!


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The goddamn lady asian beetle invasion has begun. It’s not as bad yet as it will get, but it’s a little worse every day. They climb in my window, crawl all over my curtains leaving their nasty stinky orange trail behind, and then they die and I get to clean up the mess.

Fucking things.

At this point, only a few days in, I’m just sweeping them to a corner ’til the evening, then vacuuming them up and tossing them. I’m wondering if weatherstripping around the windows would help keep them out.

It’s certainly worth a try.

Along with the lady beetle invasion comes the wasp invasion. They seem to come inside when the sun hits the house and warms it up in the afternoon. I’m not sure where they’re getting in, but I suspect it’s at the top of the fireplace in the dining room. The other day I killed 17 wasps in the course of about an hour. (They’re not aggressive wasps – they don’t fly at you, they fly away from you. Mostly, they fly at the window trying to figure out how the hell to get back outside.)

The cats are excellent wasp detectors. If I walk into a room and the cats are all staring at the ceiling, I know it’s time to get out the vacuum cleaner. I only use the vacuum cleaner to catch them when they’re up high. The rest of the time, I grab them with a piece of paper towel, squish them ’til I hear a cracking sound, and then either toss them in the toilet or out the door.

For the first thirty-something years of my life, I was TERRIFIED of flying bugs. In my 20s, I ran screaming out of my parents’ garage because there was a DRAGONFLY flying around. I once took a shower huddled at the end of the shower with one eye on a HUGE spider because I just knew it was going to fly up and chew my face off. When my sister and I were teenagers, we found a huge spider in my room, and instead of squishing it or smacking it with a magazine, we sprayed half a can of furniture polish on it (that’s how much furniture polish it took before the damn thing stopped moving).

It seems that the way to get over that fear is to have to deal with bugs on a daily basis. The first year we owned this house (before we moved in), I’d smack at the wasps with a magazine and then run screaming from the room. A few months later, I’d go after the wasp with the vacuum, and run screaming from the room after I heard the “SLOOP” sound of the wasp being sucked into the vacuum. Last year and this year, I’m using a piece of paper towel and squishing them. Who knows what I’ll be doing next year?

Probably catching and squishing them with my bare hands.



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I didn’t get the calendars created last weekend, obviously. I swear upon all that is holy that I’ll get them available by Monday. It’s my one big goal for this weekend! Pinky swear!

And if I don’t get them done by Monday, you have my full permission to harass me about it every single day.


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So, the dropping off of Terry and Sookie went okay. As well as could be expected, I guess. They only howled half the way there, then settled down and snoozed the rest of the way. They were mostly curious about the cat room at Petsmart.

Until I opened the cage Lafayette and Bill were in, that is. Bill and Lafayette ran over to Sookie and were all “Hey! Hi! Howyadoin’?!” and Sookie was all “EXCUSE me, I do not KNOW you, please stop sniffing my butt!”

I let them all run around and mingle for a good long while, and the hisses from Sookie and Terry kept coming, but they weren’t quite as adamant about it. Finally, I gave them all hugs and kisses, put them in their cage, and left. I ran some errands and then stopped back by Petsmart after they’d opened (I needed to stock up on cat food. Don’t I always?!). I stood at the end of the aisle where the cats couldn’t see me, and watched them.

Bill and Lafayette were all sprawled out on the floor of the cage, sound asleep. Terry and Sookie were sitting up on the shelf staring down at them, clearly thinking “What fresh hell is this?”

My poor babies.

“Did I mention DO NOT SNIFF ME?”

Bill did not want to be held and kissed. Bill wanted to run! And play! And run some more!

Lafayette, in a rare moment of stillness.


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The Wonkas are doing well. They’ve gone from that round baby kitten stage, to the long ‘n lanky stage. They race around like little wild things, but when I come into the room they pile on me and I LOVE it. Nothing like having a lap full of sweet purring kittens.

Sweet until they start smacking at my eyelashes or grabbing at my mouth with their sharp little claws, that is. We trimmed their claws the other night, and life in the Wonka room is now a little less painful for me.

I don’t think anyone was actually even touching him here, he was just being all drama queen-y.

I got this cheap little basket at (I think) the dollar store with the intention of storing cat toys in it. The cats ADORE hanging out in it. When I clean and vacuum their room, I pile all the toys in this basket, and within ten minutes of setting them free in their room, they’ve got the basket emptied and someone’s sitting in it.

Fightin’ brudders.

I just love the white whiskers against the dark fur.

“Belly rub, please?”


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I have no pictures of the Cookies to share today, because I’ve been lax about taking the camera into the room with me. I’ll try to remedy that later today!


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Elwood, annoyed.


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2008: My poor Poo.
2007: I have no idea on earth how we’d ever tell if a chicken was insane, since they seem to lean toward The Crazy even when they’re (we assume) perfectly normal.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.
2004: In case you were wondering, we are officially Crazy Cat People.
2003: I always look like a fucking lunatic when I take my own picture.
2002: (Is it just me who always thinks of Billy Crystal in When Harry Met Sally saying “I would be pleased to partake of your pecan piiiiiiiiiiiiie” when I hear, say, or read the word “partake”?)
2001: (For the record, her verdict was that the real-life prostitutes were “creepy”.)
2000: No entry.
1999: And going blind would just suck.

10/27/09 – Tuesday

Someone searched on “Caramel Apple Jam” last night. If you’re looking for the recipe, it’s here (I used to link to it on Suzanne McMinn’s forum, but that link no longer works and I can’t seem to find the forum post). If you’re looking for where to buy the Caramel Apple Jam I’m selling, that … Continue reading “10/27/09 – Tuesday”

Someone searched on “Caramel Apple Jam” last night. If you’re looking for the recipe, it’s here (I used to link to it on Suzanne McMinn’s forum, but that link no longer works and I can’t seem to find the forum post). If you’re looking for where to buy the Caramel Apple Jam I’m selling, that page is here.

I finally got around to making a batch of Caramel Apple Jam yesterday, and I used my new Dutch Oven instead of the cheap and crappy pot I’ve been using, and I have to say that the dutch oven heated so much better and more evenly, that it took me about half the time to make the jam. It was nice to have a batch cranked out by breakfast!


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In my comments yesterday, Catsy said: What brand and shade of hair color do you have Fred put in your hair? Nance looks great in her new color, doesn’t she? I was hoping for a photo of you. Hydrox is a keeper; his little size was a surprise to me, too.

I use L’Oreal 5CB “Medium Chestnut Brown”. Then underneath, it says “warmer”; I’m not sure what that means. For some reason it came out a lot redder than last time, I’m not sure why.

Please note that the past week of 6 hours of sleep a night because I get up at 4:30 to feed baby kittens is catching up with me and making me look OLD. Also making me look OLD: the fact that I am OLD.

Yeah, Nance looks awesome, damnit. That looks like a salon job, doesn’t it? Rick will probably demand we start calling him “Monsieur Ree-chard” from here on out.

(I took French 1 & 2 when I was in high school (I can still count to 10 in French!), and there was a girl in my French 2 class who pronounced “Monsieur” like “Mon-sewer” and it used to drive my French teacher NUTS but I think of that girl every time I see the word and it makes me smile.)


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The other day we switched the Cookies from the ferret cage they were in, to the other cage we have. The bars on the cage they’re in now are vertical so they can’t climb them. The ferret cage has horizontal bars, so the little monsters were climbing the bars and then diving off them, only there was no mosh pit to land in. I was worried they’d crack their little noggins open, and no one wants to have to clean up Cookie noggin from the bottom of the cage.

(I suspect that if one of the Cookies cracked their noggin open, marshmallow fluff would come puffing out. Except for Hydrox, who’s a genius, and I’ll get to that in a moment.)

So I took the ferret cage into the kitchen and wiped down the bars of the top of the cage. Then I put the base of the cage across the sinks, and ran hot water into it, and dumped ammonia into it. When there were several inches of water, I began scrubbing the bottom of the cage.

I wasn’t wearing gloves.

Have I ever mentioned that when you bottle feed baby kittens, your hands get absolutely shredded? I’ve tried wearing gardening gloves when bottle feeding, but they just don’t give me enough dexterity. So plunging my half-shredded hands into a mixture of ammonia and hot water REALLY stung.

Not one of the smarter moves I’ve made. I’d like to say that I won’t make that mistake again, but please – I think we all know I will, and I’ll be super surprised at how much it stings next time, too.

So, this is how Hydrox is a genius:

1. As I went in to feed the kittens this afternoon, all the others were trying to fit their faces through the bars or climb the bars. Hydrox sat back and looked consideringly up at the latches because HE KNOWS how the door opens. I give it three days ’til he’s figured out how to balance on the other kittens and push the latch back so he can open the door.

2. There was a lot of pee in the litter box, so I didn’t worry about pottying them before feeding them. Then after everyone had eaten, I was pottying Blue, and Hydrox came over and sniffed at the pile of paper towels, squatted down, and peed next to them. (True genius would have been going into the cage to use the litter box, but he’s got those short, stubby legs and that huge belly hindering him).

3. He PLAYED WITH A TOY last night. None of his siblings have any idea what toys are, but Hydrox totally looked at the toy I put down in front of him, smacked it with one paw and then waddled off to look for food. GENIUS.

Speaking of Hydrox, I keep meaning to mention this: Fred wanted to name him E.L. Fudge. When I said “Yeah, except that everyone will misread his name and call him “El Fudge”, Fred laughed and said “Even more perfect!”

Paws up, y’all!

Waiting patiently for the petting.

“Kind lady, I will clean MY OWN FOOT, there’s no need to use obscenities. “Bath” indeed!”




Snoozin’ Hydrox. That boy can sleep like nobody’s business, and then he comes awake all of a sudden and wants to know where the food is.

Lap full o’ kittens.


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Off I go to drop Sookie and Terry at the adoption center. I hope they remember Lafayette and Bill and are happy to see them. I hope they (all of them!) get adopted quickly. I hope they aren’t scared.

Jake and Elwood are going to miss those two something fierce. We’ve had the True Bloods longer than we’ve had Jake and Elwood! They practically grew up together, and now Jake and Elwood will be wondering where their brother and sister went.

I don’t know how I’m going to sleep tonight. I’ve gotten used to Sookie sleeping on one side of me and Terry sleeping on the other, making it absolutely impossible to turn over without dislodging one or the other and causing a litany of complaints from the injured party requiring much petting and kissing.


Fingers crossed that they get adopted super fast!

(I’ll see if I can’t snap a picture or two of Lafayette and Bill while I’m there!)


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Jake the Smug.


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2008: Sulking and doing nothing is greatly helped by a sweet little litter of fluffy kittens, if you were curious.
2007: No entry.
2006: No entry.
2005: I’m sorry, but “Sell yourself to me” is Interviewer-speak for “I’m too lazy to come up with a real question, so try to answer this stupid-ass question I read on a bad interview webpage somewhere or perhaps even pulled directly from my ass.”
2004: I cannot stand this song. I cannot stand this video. I am filled with extreme hatred every time I happen across either the song or the video.
2003: We went to see Miss Saigon on Sunday.
2002: No entry.
2001: No entry.
2000: The man drove two hours to spend one hour with his grandchild and then drove two hours back. How cool is that?
1999: May I say that the child gets an UNGODLY amount of presents.

10/26/09 – Monday

From this: to this: in 21 short years. Amazing, isn’t it? This entry from two years ago still says it all. Happy 21st birthday, Danielle!!!!!!!! I love you. (Now behave* yourself tonight!!!!) *When Danielle was little – three or so, I’m thinking – she would do or get into something she shouldn’t, and her father … Continue reading “10/26/09 – Monday”

From this:

to this:

in 21 short years.

Amazing, isn’t it?

This entry from two years ago still says it all.

Happy 21st birthday, Danielle!!!!!!!!

I love you.

(Now behave* yourself tonight!!!!)

*When Danielle was little – three or so, I’m thinking – she would do or get into something she shouldn’t, and her father would say “Dani, behave!”

And she would say “I’m bein’ have!”

Then I would squish her to death.


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This weekend went by so quickly, I hardly know what on earth I did. Let’s see… Friday morning I decided that I would try making some Peanut Butter S’mores Turnovers, because hello – graham cracker, chocolate, and peanut butter in a pastry dough, baked and then marshmallow fluff drizzled on top? How could that not be good??

Well. It kind of wasn’t great. I will happily send you the link to the recipe, but I don’t wan to link to it and then say it wasn’t all that, because I feel like it would be rude. There was too much peanut butter – it was overwhelming, actually. I couldn’t taste the chocolate, and the graham cracker kind of disintegrated. Fred tried one when he got home, and agreed with me.

Then he came up with an interesting idea in the turnover category, so Saturday morning I got up and unfolded puff pastry dough (you didn’t think I make my own, did you? CRAZY.), cut each sheet into 9 pieces, put a blop (that’s the scientific term – I didn’t measure it, I just used a spoon and put enough that it looked right) of Caramel-Apple Jam on each piece, then folded them over, sealed the edges, put them on a cookie sheet, brushed them with a beaten egg mixed with 1 T of water, sprinkled Turbinado sugar on top, and baked for 15 minutes at 400.

And they. Were. Fabulous.

My husband, I’ve gotta say, has an eye for making up recipes on the fly and having them come out pretty damn good.

The best thing about these turnovers (and they’re really more mini turnovers – they’re not like huge, full-sized turnovers) is that you can fill them with whatever sounds good to you – you don’t have to make an entire batch of Caramel-Apple Turnovers if you don’t want to. I actually used lemon curd in four of them (instead of the Caramel-Apple Jam, not in addition to) and they were pretty damn good.

(The Caramel-Apple Jam ones were better, though.)

I meant to make more Caramel-Apple Jam over the weekend, but between spending time with the Wonkas and bottle feeding and spending time with the Cookies, and then spending time with Terry and Sookie and doing three hundred loads of laundry in between all that, there wasn’t a whole lot of leftover time to be chopping up apples. Maybe I’ll get to that today. We’ll see.

Have I mentioned that having babies in the house makes for a lot of laundry? It doesn’t help that several of them are still pooping in their cage (the litter box is RIGHT THERE, damnit!) and then tromping through it. I clean them as best I can with baby wipes, but at a certain point you’ve got to give up and give them a bath. I don’t like to bathe them too often, because I don’t think it’s great for their skin and also it scares them and stresses them out, but when they’ve got poop smeared down their sides, I just can’t stand having them like that. So I use towels for that, I use blankets to line their cage (which have to be changed out when they’re pooped upon), and I use towels in my lap when I’m pottying them just in case something dribbles when I’m not paying attention. I’m doing one full load of towels, washcloths, and blankets every day. On bad days, I’m doing two loads.

Ah well. Could be worse, right?

Sunday I… don’t know. I did my own laundry (having babies tromp through their poo and then across my lap makes for a lot of my own laundry), I did more baby laundry, I…

Oh, I know. I didn’t get up ’til 5:30, because Fred has one of those automatic clocks that gets the correct time from space aliens or something, and the space aliens decided that since they’re turning clocks back for Europe, clearly the clock residing on Citizen Anderson’s bedside table needs to be turned back an hour, right? So Fred thought he was getting up at 4:30, but it was actually 5:30, and he didn’t realize it until he came to wake me up and saw the correct time on my clock.

(We’ve been getting up at 4:30 every morning to feed the Cookies. I hate the first five minutes after rolling out of bed at 4:30, but I like being up early and getting stuff done. I’ll still be glad when the Cookies are bigger and I can sleep a little later.)

Once the Cookies were fed and the kitchen was cleaned up, I gave the Wonkas their morning snack, then had Fred put hair color on my hair. I was originally going to grow my natural color out, because I was getting tired of coloring my hair, but after three months, when I could see just how much gray hair there was, I changed my mind. Fred has to help me out by putting the color on my hair, because if it were left to me, I’d probably only get about a third of the back of my hair covered.

I yelled at him a few times for getting color on my face (“I guess maybe you should have RICK do it!” he snarked, because I told him the other night that Rick had foil colored Nance’s hair, and marveled at that, because as I told Nance, I feel like I’m taking my life into my hands by just having Fred put color on my hair straight from the box with no fancy foiling involved), but all in all he did a pretty damn good job of it.

I’d like to say that I plan to get into a regular hair-coloring schedule from here on out, but I think we all know that that’ll happen right after Satan puts in his order for a Storm Chaser 3-in-1 Jacket (in Colonial Red, obviously).

Annnnd… what else did I do Sunday? Not a lot. Kittens, kittens, and more kittens.

It’s a rough life, but someone’s gotta live it!


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If you didn’t check Love & Hisses over the weekend, you missed a good-news announcement, some great pictures, and an adorable movie on Saturday. And on Sunday, you missed ANOTHER adorable movie and some adorable pictures.

I love my Wonkas. When I walk into the foster kitten room and they are SO excited to see me that they stumble over each other in their rush to get to me, well, how can you not love that?

They like me to hold them (until they see something more interesting, of course, and then they’re off like a shot), and they like me to kiss them behind the ear (they purr super-loud when I do), and they like me to rub their bellies. Gus and Mike are so funny, because if I’m holding one of them like a baby and rubbing his belly, and then stop for a moment to pet another nearby kitten – OH do they get irate. Mike will complain in short bursts, and Gus will do a long, high-pitched meow. It cracks me up every time. The girls, on the other hand, if I’m holding Mike like a baby and Veruca feels the need for some belly-rubbin’ action, she doesn’t hesitate. She climbs up and flops across him and waits for her own belly rub. Same with Violet.

“MY toy.”

“MY toy!”

I love it when they sit with their front paws tucked under them.

Sweet Gus in the sun (with his toy!)

LOVE the whiskers.

Three of the four (Veruca was uninterested in posing.)


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The thing about the Cookies is that they are so cute.

So cute.

SO cute.

And I love me a Siamese mix, but my lord.

This guy right here?

The one flopped across the stuffed Momma kitty?

“Who, ME?”

YES, you! Hydrox, you are the cutest, sweetest, most personable 4 week-old I have ever come across in my entire life! I don’t know if it’s the fact that you’re so laid-back that when you’ve eaten and gone potty, you go back into your cage and flop across the Momma kitty and go back to sleep. I don’t know if it’s the fact that you love yourself a good belly rub and know how to ask for one. I don’t know if it’s the fact that when you’re happy, you march and march and march. I don’t know if it’s the fact that you have the NEATEST feeling fur or that you’re clearly a litter box-using genius, or a fearless explorer, but Hydrox?

I am in LOVE with you.

I don’t even care that you CLEARLY prefer Fred. When he was done feeding kittens yesterday, and I was hanging out with your sisters and brother on my lap, and you FOLLOWED him to the door and then howled inconsolably at the closed door until he came back, I was all “What am I, chopped liver, you brat?!” But I was just glad that when he left again, and deposited you in my lap before he left, you deigned to stay and enjoy a belly rub before you deserted me for the stuffed Momma kitty.

Now, if I can just figure out a way to get you to teach all your siblings to use the litter box as well as you do!

In the meantime: a Hydrox movie!!!


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Tomorrow, Terry and Sookie are off to the adoption center, where they’ll join Bill and Lafayette. Today, I’ll be devoting my time to snapping pictures of them, and giving them extra doses of L-U-V to carry them through until a person with good taste comes along and falls immediately in love with them.


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Kara likes to hang out where it’s quiet. She has to rest up in case there’s some butt-kicking that needs to be done. It’s rough to be Sheriff Mama.


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2008: No entry.
2007: I hope that the days come easy and the moments pass slow, And each road leads you where you want to go
2006: My little girl.
2005: The spud is 17 today!
2004: I hope you dance.
2003: No entry.
2002: “You want to buy STUFF faster than we get rid of it!” he accused shrilly.
2001: Well, the little bastard is home again.
2000: No entry.
1999: Boring work-related shit.

10/23/09 – Friday

Vote for me! Please? Good Mood Gig from SAM-e (It’s to become a 6-month paid blogger for SAM-e. Details are here.) Thank you all for your votes! 🙂   * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * … Continue reading “10/23/09 – Friday”

Vote for me! Please?

Vote for Me
Good Mood Gig from SAM-e

(It’s to become a 6-month paid blogger for SAM-e. Details are here.)

Thank you all for your votes! 🙂


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The lamp in the guest bedroom has been dying a slow death over the past few weeks, probably because it’s gotten more use in the past month than since we bought this house. First the Wonkas were in there, and now the Cookies. Finally, a few days ago Fred tried to turn it on, and it wouldn’t turn on. He took it apart and peered at it, and declared it dead.

So I stopped by TJ Maxx to see what they had in stock, and they didn’t have the brushed bronze look that most of our lamps in the house have, but I saw a silver lamp that seemed like it would do. And $25 is a pretty good price for a brand new lamp.

I bought it and brought it home, and then finally got around to setting it up in the guest bedroom yesterday.

And it is hideous. It wasn’t until last night when we were feeding the babies and I glanced over to see the lamp sitting there that I realized just how hideous it is.

We’ll be getting a new lamp for that room soon, believe you me.

(Here’s where I’d put a picture as proof of its hideousness, but I forgot to snap a picture, and the babies just got put back down after a lengthy feeding-and-bathing session and I am NOT going in there and risking waking them up and setting off the howling. You’ll just have to take my word for it.)


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My goal this weekend is to get pictures chosen and uploaded, and calendars for 2010 created.


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By popular vote, the Comment! Answering! Extravaganza! lives on.

If you win the Sam-E blog contest, will you have to stop using the word Fuck? Will it have to be a nicey nice blog?

I don’t know if I would like that. It’s so funny when you say it. (I’m still voting for you everyday.)

HELL no – this site will still be up and running. I’d do a separate entry for SAM-e that was all sunshine and kittens. (Not that I honestly expect to win.


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After you are done bottlefeeding the new batch, do you give them back to the neighbor or you taking them to Challenger house? And how the heck does everyone know you foster kittens? Someone put up a sign?

They’re now officially Challenger’s House kittens (I had to check with the shelter manager to be sure it was okay), so we’ll foster them ’til they’re ready to be adopted.

I don’t know how everyone knows we foster, but I think that maybe Fred told this neighbor way back when we took Maxi’s kittens and fostered them for Challenger’s House, and she remembered. Or maybe she just knows that we’re crazy cat people and that I don’t work, and hoped we could help out!


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I’ve lost track…how many cats are in the house now? When I die I want to be reincarnated as an Anderson kitty…


If my math skills are correct, there are 22 kittehs now! 21-4=17 17+5=22 😀

::Sigh:: You are correct. Our previous high of 21 has now been bested. I’d really like it if we didn’t get any higher than that in the future, BUT I AM NOT SAYING NEVER (because that’ll just come back to bite me in the ass!)


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Since you are the kitteh whisperer I have some questions about transitioning an outdoor kitten (7 months) into an indoor kitten. My parents are about to attempt this. Litter training is the big question at hand. Do Newt and Maxi use the box, or do they go outside? Did you have to “teach” them about the litterbox, or did you put them in it and they just got it? I told my mom to go w/scoopable litter cuz I thought it would feel more like outside. Ugh, I’ve been out of vet med for 11 yrs. and my brain is empty! I’m afraid they’ll never be able to convince him that he’s inside only. Looking for any and all recommendations.

Maxi and Newt pretty much got the litterbox immediately – we put them in it, and they knew exactly what it was and what to do. I think it’s instinctual for most cats who are old enough (and at 7 months old, their cat is certainly old enough). I’d say put him in the litter box, and if he looks confused, take his front paws and show him how to scratch around in the litter. I bet he gets it pretty quickly, though.


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Do you have any idea what happened to that young woman Bonnie — formerly of Bontasia, then she had a blog that I think was called This Will Fall Away or something like that? There hasn’t been an entry there for a year or so and the last entry there was rather a disturbing one. I sincerely hope she’s okay.

I haven’t heard a thing from Bonnie, and I don’t know how to get in touch with her. I hope she’s okay, too! Anyone out there know anything??


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How exactly do you have to “stimulate” them to pee? Rub their lower abdomen?

You rub their hind end with a paper towel. Works like a charm!


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We had a darling cat hanging around my house and the more time she came back the fatter she looked. I let her in one day and sure enough she was pregnant Thank goodness she was okay with staying inside and she and my calico got along perfectly. She has now had the babies in my closet but now I don’t know what to do with them. She had three beautiful babies and I can’t keep them. I know they are not ready to go to homes until they are 10-12 weeks? just guessing on that but then what? My husband love cats but not four more and of course the momma isn’t spade and I don’t know what to do or who to call. If you have any readers in St. Louis that would like to adapt an adorable kitten in time for a Christmas present would you send them to me? I am in awe of you and all you do for the kitties but my babies are only three days old and I’m already attached. Anyways, any suggestions for me would be great and helpful Thanks and sorry for the rambling!

Robin, if you want to send me some pictures, I can put your whole story at the top of one of my posts so everyone will see it – and even if no readers in your area want to adopt, they may have suggestions for you! (And yes, 10 – 12 weeks sounds about right.)


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I was also at the doctor’s office yesterday. There was a poor woman who waited over FIVE HOURS to speak with a doctor. She didn’t have an appointment–they were trying to squeeze her in. She was FAR more patient and tolerant than I would have been. After a couple of hours, I would have made a huge stink!

This reminds me of a few years ago – I think it was my six-month follow-up appointment with my weight loss surgeon, so it would have been August 2006. I waited for over an hour to see the doctor, and when it had been an hour and ten minutes and the doctor was nowhere to be seen, I went to the front desk and asked to reschedule, because I wanted to get the fuck out of there (though I told them I had an appointment). That lit a fire under the doctor’s ass, and he came in and was a condescending douchebag, and ultimately declared that I needed to have my gallbladder out.

(I still don’t honestly believe I needed to have it out, but that’s neither here nor there. And speaking of my weight loss surgeon, if anyone asked if I’d recommend him, I absolutely would. He does good work. But I’d be sure to caveat the recommendation with “But he has less personality than Jon ‘Douchebag’ Gosselin.”)


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How do you tell Jake and Elwood apart?

I tried to get some good pictures of Jake and Elwood so I could really show the differences, but the little brats wouldn’t cooperate, so here – here’s the very first picture I ever took of them.

Elwood’s on the left, Jake’s on the right. Elwood’s eyes are just the slightest bit darker than Jake’s, though to be honest I can’t tell unless they’re right next to each other. Jake’s cheeks are rounder, and as a result, when he looks at you a certain way, he looks like he’s mentally unhinged.

Elwood’s tail is shorter and thicker; Jake’s tail is long and thin.

Fred says Elwood is heavier than Jake, but I can’t say that I’ve noticed that at all.

If you see a gray cat and touch him, and he immediately starts purring, that’s Elwood. (Jake purrs, but he takes some convincing.) If you’re minding your own business and a gray cat comes along, purring, and rubs up against you and tries to herd you in a certain direction, or climbs into your lap and rubs his face against you, that’s Elwood. If he looks at you and tells you to go fuck yourself, that’s Jake.

Half the time when I label a picture as being either Jake or Elwood, it’s just a guess on my part.

And on another note, Jake and Elwood are the least finicky eaters I have ever seen in my entire life. They will eat ANYTHING. I’ve never seen them refuse any kind of food at all.

Last week I was sitting at my desk eating dinner, and Elwood came along to lick my plate when I was done (yes, I let him do that, and yes, it’s not a great habit, but it’s not like I let him eat off the plate WITH me. Yet.) I just happened to realize, as he leaned down to take a bite of leftover squash casserole that it had onion in it, and I gasped loudly and said “Oh buddy, no, you can’t have that!”, and my gasp and exclamation startled him so badly that it scared a fart out of him, and then he ran off, leaving the stench behind.


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By the way, have you (or any of your readers) read The Gargoyle? I’d like to get someone else’s feedback on that one. I had a serious love/hate thing with both the author and the main character, and I still can’t decide how I felt about it overall.

I haven’t read it – but I went and read the summary on Amazon, and it looks kind of interesting!

Anyone else out there read it and have an opinion?


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Holy crap. Meezer mixes and a tuxie. I could just plotz.

Embarrassing confession time: it was literally IN THE LAST WEEK that I realized “meezer” = “siamese.” Before that, I’d seen the word, but just thought it was a bastardization of “mouser.”



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Dear God:

Why, when I say “I’d like to not have any more bottle babies” do you laugh and immediately send me more of them, BUT when I say “I’d like to see more poop”, you grant my request? Could we have some CONSISTENCY, please?



There’s poop. There’s plenty of poop. These kittens? Champions of the pooping. Which would be great if they only pooped when I was stimulating them before or after mealtime, but they specialize in ninja pooping. I’ll walk through the room, and all will be clean in the cage, and then I’ll get to the door of the room and turn around to look at the sweet sleeping babies, to find that in the three seconds my back was turned, two of them pooped in opposite corners of the cage, and the other three tromped through it.

I’m getting somewhat decent at giving wee babies baths. They don’t like the bathing, but they enjoy the cuddling afterward – and they forgive pretty quickly.

I love how well this batch of kittens eats – most of the time, they latch on immediately, and eat until they’re full. It’s nice to not have to dribble formula into their mouths and wait for them to swallow, or squeeze the bottle slowly while they swallow.

My favorite thing in the world is when they latch onto the bottle and their ears start wiggling. I’ve got to get a movie of that, because it’s so cute, and I know these guys will be eating on their own before I know it!

Please note that the sides of the bottle are sucked in because he’s got such suction going on. We have to occasionally pull the bottle out of his mouth to break the suction so he can get more food in his mouth. Hydrox is the super-champion eater.

Orange (I think she’s going to be Lorna Doone. I’ll be assigning names this weekend.) I adore that thousand-yard stare they get when they’re really eating well.

Orange WILL NOT eat while laying on her belly. She MUST be standing up, this is the position she prefers, and don’t you try to convince her otherwise!


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Mike’s sweet little face just KILLS ME DEAD.

I don’t remember what he was looking at, but it must have been quite something!


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2008: He’ll tell you that he “let” me get Kara, but the truth is that he always loves the female cats with the intense eyes and I’d say that he probably wanted her even more than I did.
2007: Bless his fluffy little head, he’s not the brains of the outfit, for sure.
2006: “I don’t know, babe,” I said finally, hoping he wouldn’t go through another four or five possibilities. “It’s a fascinating mystery.”
2005: No entry.
2004: No entry.
2003: I believe that might be a personal record, right there.
2002: My poor baby.
2001: it’s MY journal and I’ll exaggerate if I want to.
2000: No entry.
1999: Why we don’t need another cat, by Fred

10/22/09 – Thursday

It appears that there are some people who’d miss the Friday Comment! Answering! Extravaganza! I actually didn’t think that many people were into it, but I never minded answering questions in the entry, so I’ll put up a poll, and majority will rule on this, mm’kay? Edited to add: There’ll be entries on Fridays whether … Continue reading “10/22/09 – Thursday”

It appears that there are some people who’d miss the Friday Comment! Answering! Extravaganza! I actually didn’t think that many people were into it, but I never minded answering questions in the entry, so I’ll put up a poll, and majority will rule on this, mm’kay?

Edited to add: There’ll be entries on Fridays whether there’s a Comment! Answering! Extravaganza! or not.

Friday Comment! Answering! Extravaganza!

Do you like the Friday Comment! Answering! Extravaganza! ?

Yes! Please keep it.
No! Get rid of it.
I don’t care! I just like to click on things.


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I had a fairly good day yesterday (really, with NINE little kittens in the house, how can you NOT have a good day?!), but I’ll tell you that the highlight of my day?

NOT walking out the side door and seeing Newt flinging a headless squirrel into the air and then continuing to play with it.

Oh, there was a head present and accounted for – it was sitting over by the chimney with a trail of guts leading to it – it just wasn’t attached to the squirrel.

You know, I know cats hunt and eat small rodents and all, and I’ve accepted that. I don’t love it, but I accept it. But WHY must they leave pieces of squirrel near the steps so I have to carefully avert my gaze every time I go outside? If they’re going to kill it, I think they should have to eat it afterward. Because squirrel guts do not lend a happy air to my day.

That Newt is a hunting motherfucker, though. Between he and Maxi, I’m not sure how there are any squirrels left alive in this area.

Speaking of cats and hunting, I don’t think I mentioned that one day last week Kara was in the back yard, and I glanced out the window and saw that she was eating a mole (we have a horrible mole problem, and occasionally they tunnel into the back yard and that’s about the LAST thing they do). Not five minutes later, I looked out again, and she was carrying something big across the yard.

It was no mole, that’s for sure.

I watched and watched, and just for the life of me couldn’t figure out what it was. I thought it could be a squirrel, but the color didn’t quite look right. Finally, I went outside to see what it was, and what was it? A rabbit. A RABBIT. The damn thing must have wandered into our back yard (it wasn’t fully grown, so must have been able to squeeze through the fence) and met up with Kara.

She’s a pretty fearsome hunter, too.

Sorry, though. I have no pictures of headless squirrels or half-eaten rabbits to share. I know you’re heartbroken.


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Tuesday, I had an 11:00 appointment in South Huntsville, a follow-up appointment with the Hematologist who ordered my iron infusion.

Let me repeat: the appointment was for 11:00.

People? What do we know about scheduling doctor appointments? Is it that unless one is desperate, one should schedule appointments for very very very first thing in the morning? I believe that is the number one truth of appointment scheduling. Because what happens when one has an 11:00 appointment with a doctor, when said doctor starts seeing patients at 8:00?

If you answered “Why Robyn, you get to wait for 1 hour and 45 minutes!”, give yourself a gold star.

Yes, I cooled my heels for 1 hour and 45 minutes. They tricked me at first, though – I signed in, paid my copay

[Let me take a moment to breathe deeply so that I won’t get pissed all over about the fact that I paid a $35 copay for a follow-up visit. Breathe in. Breathe out. Breathe in. Breathe out. Alright, then.]

and I had hardly sat down and cracked open my book (thankyajesus that I remembered to bring a book with me) when the lab tech was calling my name. This gave me a very false sense of hope that I’d be out of the office by 11:15. 11:30 at the latest. She brought me back to the lab and took blood, and may I just say that it was the best and fastest blood drawing experience of my life. I didn’t feel a THING. Then she told me to go back to a second waiting room and wait.

I sat in a small room with several other people, who were all talking to each other, and read. I occasionally dipped into the conversation to see if there was anything interesting going on, but they were talking about some restaurant in Scottsboro, so I tuned back out. Eventually, the other patients waiting were called back to have their vitals taken, and to go to various exam rooms.

I sat and read.

More patients came and sat and chatted quietly to the people accompanying them. Eventually, this woman came along with a huge bag of knit hats.

(Have I mentioned that the doctor is also an Oncologist? I would guess that 9/10ths of his patients are cancer patients. And there I was, sitting there with my low iron, feeling like a – what? Imposter? Like, pardon me, I have LOW IRON, I have to consult with the doctor about my very important LOW IRON. I just stayed quiet and kept my head down so no one would turn to me and say “I have stage 4 terminal lung cancer, the doctor expects me to kick off in a week to ten ::COUGHCOUGHCOUGH:: oh, pardon me, I seem to have gotten a piece of my cancerous lung on your cheek, could you hand that back to me? So I’m about to die. What’s your story?” and I’d have to burst into tears and yell “I HAVE LOW IRON I REQUIRE THE OCCASIONAL IRON TRANSFUSION O GOD WHYYYYYY MEEEEEEEEEE?” and flee the room.)

So this woman came along with a huge bag of knit hats and stopped in the doorway and said “Would anyone like a hat? I knit these myself, I’m donating them to patients of this office.”

I heard “Free hats” and perked up and casually leaned over and looked, and the woman must have had 200 hats in that bag, and they were GORGEOUS. For one little second I thought about asking for one (hey, they were REALLY pretty), but I thought that would be horribly crass (and you KNOW I’d have to come right here and tell all y’all about it because I can’t keep any of my crassness and stupidity to myself) and so I settled back down and continued reading my book.

Eventually I tuned back into the conversation and glanced over to see that an elderly woman had accepted one of the hats, but then she reconsidered and handed it back to the woman who’d made it.

“She doesn’t want to take one just yet,” her daughter, sitting next to her, told the knitter. “She still has all her hair!”

And the lady who’d made the hats, nodded understandingly and then said “Yes, well, it won’t be long, though!”

Eh. Wha? I know my eyebrows shot up so far they were on the back side of my head, and I had to catch my eyeballs before they went bouncing off down the hall.

I don’t even know what the still-has-all-her-hair woman’s response was, because I was still boggled by what the knitter’d said.

I myself would have nodded and smiled understandingly rather than saying, basically, “Hey, just a matter of time! You’ll be balder than a billiard ball before you know it! Oh, and just WAIT ’til the vomiting starts, that is going to be one FABULOUS experience!”

More patients came and went, pages flew off the calendar, I grew steadily more gray. I started playing a game with myself where I would try to figure out what time it was without looking at a clock, then check the time on my cell phone. I was within a couple of minutes most times.

At 12:20, they came and got me, and put me in an exam room. I sat and read and thought about throwing myself out the window. I texted Fred to let him know I was STILL FUCKING WAITING. He texted me back and told me I should leave. By this point, though, an hour and a half into the wait, I was invested in fucking sitting and waiting until the doctor (who was surely in the middle of saving a cancer patient’s life) wandered by.

At 12:45, the door opened. A woman came in and introduced herself as the doctor’s nurse. She sat and showed me the results from the blood they drew the morning I had the iron infusion. She told me that I do not have Myeloma. I had not been very concerned about the possibility of having Myeloma, since I had no idea they were testing to be sure I didn’t, so I felt no great sense of relief. I just nodded and said “Okay. Well, good.”

(I should have said “Can we test for all other kinds of cancer now, just to be safe?”)

She asked if I was feeling better; I told her I’m feeling the same, but since I felt fine before the iron infusion, the fact that I’m feeling the same doesn’t alarm me.

She said it was surprising that I felt fine before the infusion because my iron level was at rock bottom. In retrospect, I’m wondering if my iron level has gone from “fine” to “rock bottom” since I had blood tests before my visit to my weight loss surgeon last January, or if the surgeon dropped the ball.

(I vote that he dropped the ball because have I mentioned I don’t like that guy?)

Anyway, she said that most likely I’ll have to start coming every 6 – 12 months for more iron infusions, I should come back in three months (with lab work done a week before my appointment so they’ll have the results), and probably 3 months after that. UNLESS the lab tests I had done before my appointment yesterday come back with my iron still low, in which case I’ll have to go back earlier for another iron infusion. So if my iron level is still low, she’ll call; otherwise, I go back in three months.

I was so relieved to be done with the appointment and out of there that it wasn’t ’til I was two miles down the road that I thought to be SUPER annoyed by the fact that I’d waited 1 hour and 45 minutes and paid a $35 copay to not even see the doctor, and in fact have a discussion with the nurse that could have easily taken place over the phone.

At least my next appointment is scheduled for 9. Hopefully I’ll only have to wait for an HOUR next time.

And hey – I got some good reading time in!


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If I ever have to write that I accidentally squished the Wonkas right to death, you’ll understand, won’t you?

Gus, sleeping….

Veruca and Violet, fighting, fall directly onto Gus’s head, waking him up.

And he gives ME the dirty look. Hey, I didn’t do it!

Nothin’ cuter than a sleeping kitten…


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The new guys have been named – go read yesterday’s entry at Love & Hisses if you missed it.

They’re doing very well – I’m feeding them every 4 hours. Well, I say I’m feeding them, but Fred helps out with the feedings that take place when he’s home. Between the two of us, we can get all five of those babies fed in no time flat.

They’re eating a lot, peeing a lot. I’d like to see more poop (did I just say that?!), but they’re doing okay.

The first few days we had them, they’d scream at me every time they saw me. I think they were a little scared by their new living situation and didn’t know what was going on. They’ve relaxed a little, now, and I’ve peeked in to see them playing and exploring their cage several times. Yesterday a ray of sun was shining in their cage, and Keebler was rolling around, stretching, and just generally looking like a happy boy.

I don’t know if all of them are purring for me, but at least several of them are.

Here I go, falling in love with yet another batch of babies. Who saw THAT coming?! 🙂

After feeding, someone’s happy. She was rolling around, stretching, and licking her paw.

I still haven’t assigned names to the girls yet. We call this one “pink” because she’s got a blotch of pink at the end of her right ear. We are SO original.

“HEY! There are BOTTLES in that mug!”

Orange (because we marked on of her ears with orange) crawled out of the cage, into my lap, and demanded a belly rub. She’s going to be a bossy one, I can already tell.

I don’t know why it is, but Hydrox looks to me like a little boy who just got a haircut. He’s a champion eater, that one.


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No True Blood adoptions yet. ::SIGH:: Maybe this weekend will be a lucky one for them!

King Terry, atop his pile o’ cat beds.

Princess Sookie, sound asleep. I swear, these Snoozzy kitten blankets are about the best investment I’ve ever made.


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Crazy Jake.


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2008: Pictures from around Crooked Acres.
2007: You snooze, you lose. That’s our motto at Crooked Acres.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.
2004: (We fat chicks love the buffet, don’tchaknow.)
2003: The gluttony, the sloth, the avarice!
2002: The kitties did not care for the tune, the unappreciative bastards.
2001: How to change a tire.
2000: No entry.
1999: But as I see it, more than 2 cats makes you a weird cat person. Am I wrong? Is it three, or some incredible number like ten?

10/20/09 – Tuesday

Until at least the end of the year – and possibly permanently – I won’t be posting entries here at Bitchypoo on Wednesdays. I will still be posting entries at Love & Hisses, complete with far too many cat pictures, so you can always click over there to get your daily dose of cute. No, … Continue reading “10/20/09 – Tuesday”

Until at least the end of the year – and possibly permanently – I won’t be posting entries here at Bitchypoo on Wednesdays. I will still be posting entries at Love & Hisses, complete with far too many cat pictures, so you can always click over there to get your daily dose of cute.

No, this is NOT the beginning of the end. I just feel like I’m spending too much time online and am never caught up, and want to cut down a little.

Don’t be sad.

Also, Friday Comment-Answering-Extravaganzas will be going away. I’ll respond to comments in the comments (what a concept) unless, I suppose, you’re dying for opinions from others. Let’s do it this way – if you want me to put your comment up on Friday so other readers can give an opinion, just let me know in the comment. Otherwise, I’ll respond in the comments. Fridays will revert to regular ol’ entries.

Make sense?

(And I will post this on Tuesdays for the next few weeks because somehow not everyone reads and memorizes every word I post, some people just (GASP!) skim and forget everything as soon as they read it. Hmph.)


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I made apple crisp over the weekend, and boy was it GOOD. And then I had leftover apple crisp for lunch yesterday – just apple crisp, nothing else -and OY THE GAS.

One day I’m going to learn that I can’t do that any more, eat nothing but a bowl of apple crisp and a scoop of ice cream for lunch and not have to suffer the consequences. If I’d had something with some protein in it, and THEN had the apple crisp, I would have been fine. You’d think after almost four years, I’d remember. And yet, I do not.


I also made a double batch of Caramel-Apple Jam yesterday, and tomorrow I’m going to make another double batch, and then on Friday I’ll make ANOTHER double batch, and then maybe that freakin’ huge-ass bag of Granny Smiths in the laundry room will be gone. (Might take one more double batch, though.) When the apples are gone, I’m done with the Caramel-Apple Jam making ’til next year. It’s awfully good, that jam, but kind of a pain in the ass to make, with the peeling and chopping.

I got the recycling taken to the recycling center, spent plenty of time with the Wonkas, vacuumed. Did laundry.

It was sunny Sunday AND yesterday, and boy was it nice to see the sun after so many gray, overcast days. The chickens and dogs and cats seemed to appreciate the sunshine, too.

I hear our sunny days are limited, though. SIGH.


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I decided on Saturday, after I was about halfway through the latest Greg Iles book, that I am pretty much Iles’d out. I’ve liked his books in the past, but the last couple, I just haven’t been feeling the love. I actually felt guilty for refusing to finish the book.

But fuck that shit – feeling GUILTY for not finishing a book that isn’t holding my interest? How idiotic is THAT? Life is too goddamn short for that shit. If a book can’t hold my interest in the first fifty pages, it doesn’t deserve to be read, how about THAT? It’s not like Greg Iles won’t get the money I spent on the book, I am not TAKING money out of his POCKET, what the fuck is there to feel guilty about, I ask you?

So I didn’t finish the damn book. Instead, I picked up the next book in line, Lopsided: How Having Breast Cancer Can Be Really Distracting by Meredith Norton.

You wouldn’t think a book about a woman who was diagnosed with inflammatory breast cancer and had to go through chemotherapy and a mastectomy would be laugh-out-loud funny, would you? Seriously, toward the end of the book I was laying on the couch reading, and there was this one section that made me laugh so hard I cried. I laughed out loud at least six or seven times in the course of reading this book, and I made Fred read four different sections that made me laugh.

I never do that.

I highly recommend Meredith Norton’s book.

Greg Iles’s book? Not so much.


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The Wonkas are now bottle-free and have been formula-free since I moved them to the kitten room on Saturday.

“I sure am glad they’re off the bottle,” I said to Fred. “I don’t know that I really want to have bottle babies again. They make me worry too much.”

Cue the distant laughter of GOD.

Yesterday afternoon, the driveway alarm went off. Fred looked out the window and told me that it was our neighbor from two doors down and her oldest daughter. She rang the doorbell, and Fred went off to see what was what.

A minute later, he came back in the front door and called me.

“What?” I said, walking toward the front door.

“I need you out here,” he said.

“Why?” I said.

“Just! Come! Here!” he hissed.

So I did. And standing on the front porch was our neighbor and her oldest daughter.

Her daughter was holding a box. Of kittens. Tiny kittens.

I considered bellowing “OH HELL NO!” and going back inside the house, but I am far too polite for that.

It turns out that a mother cat had just been hit by a car and killed, leaving behind five – YES I SAID FIVE – babies. They were alert and had their eyes open, but were obviously still small enough to need to be bottle fed. Our neighbor couldn’t keep them because she has a job and can’t feed them every few hours, and she knows we’re crazy cat people so she threw herself on our mercy.

“Well,” I said. “The guest bedroom is free!”

We brought them inside, and I made bottles while Fred weighed them. The smallest weighed 9 ounces and the largest 11, which I decided means that they’re about three weeks old.

I stimulated them to pee (and they all peed well, which meant, I suppose, that they’d eaten well the last time they ate), and then we fed them. They weren’t terribly interested in eating, but we got some formula into all of them before we put them in the cage with a heating pad and stuffed animal.

They are adorable.

So, four kittens gone to the adoption center, and five added to the household. Apparently it’s very important to God that we have bottle babies in the house. SIGH.

(We haven’t even thought of names for them yet – but I’m sure we will in the next few days!)

There are four tabby-points (I think that’s what they are) (three girls, one boy) and one black and white (a boy).


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The Wonkas are doing just fine. They like their new home, and they like that sun shines through the windows of their home, and they especially like that I come and visit with them lots (which they also liked in their OLD home, the guest bedroom downstairs).


“I KNEW there was something fishy about that “Balloon Boy” kid and his family.”

“Hey! GUYS! She’s handing out pettins. You better hurry, you don’t wanna miss out!”

Gus is totally the Cosmo Kramer of the kitten world.


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And of course Sookie and Terry have made themselves RIGHT at home.

Terry gives Elwood a bath. Hey, SOMEONE’s gotta.

Sookie, playing in the guest bedroom.

Speaking of the True Bloods, the Saturday morning volunteer, who cleans cages at the adoption center at PetSmart told me this funny story about Hoyt and Bill:

I was cleaning their cage, and Sander (Mr. Alpha Male) was also out. Sander always attacks all the other kittens, (just playing I am sure to him). Well Hoyt and Bill were having none of that – they both ran after Sander and he went to hide in the litterbox that I had taken out of their cage while I was cleaning it. One sat on top, one sat in front of the box and Sander was so glad when I put him back in his cage!

I guess my boys are doing just fine.


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The dryer is the happenin’ place to be, these days. I don’t know if it’s because it’s near a window overlooking the back yard or because it’s near the back door (it’s not because it’s warm, because when I actually start the dryer, whoever’s laying there usually leaves).


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2008: King Suggie snoozes in his pile o’ cat beds.
2007: No entry.
2006: Biscuits for everyone!
2005: Your fascinating tidbit for the day.
2004: More Myrtle Beach.
2003: It’s got to be early-onset Alzheimer’s, y’all.
2002: No entry.
2001: No entry.
2000: I think back on the shit I pulled as a senior in high school, and I’m flat-out amazed that I managed to graduate.
1999: Just an all-around relaxing day.

10/19/09 – Monday

It’s (more than) halfway through the month, and I’m finally remembering to put up the other very cool banner I got for October. This one was made by Aly, who makes a lot of my banners. How lucky am I, to have not one but TWO awesome banners this month! Thanks, Aly!   * * … Continue reading “10/19/09 – Monday”

It’s (more than) halfway through the month, and I’m finally remembering to put up the other very cool banner I got for October. This one was made by Aly, who makes a lot of my banners. How lucky am I, to have not one but TWO awesome banners this month!

Thanks, Aly!


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Yesterday morning, I was looking through pictures I’d taken, and I came across this one, which was a picture I snapped of Sookie on Saturday as she snoozed on the cat bed on Fred’s desk:

Please note that at the front of the picture is the insole from a shoe. Fred has used that insole in the past to cushion his arm because resting it on the hard desk hurts the bony part of his arm near his elbow, and in fact rubs it raw.

I remain uncertain where he got that nasty thing, or how it is that the light dawned over his head one day as he rubbed his aching arm, and came to the conclusion that the insole of a shoe was the perfect solution, but it’s been there for as long as I can remember.

But as I looked at the picture and the way that nasty-looking (though, I’m sure, perfectly clean) insole detracted from a perfectly cute kitten, I tried to remember seeing Fred ever actually use it, and concluded that he didn’t. So I spun my chair around to yell at him to get rid of that nasty goddamn thing.

And there he sat at his desk, his elbow gently placed in the warm embrace of the insole.

You know how there are things that really aren’t that funny, but they hit you just right? This hit me just right, and I spun back around in my chair without saying anything, and I laughed until I cried.


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For several days, starting the week before last, we had a turkey who walked around the back forty with his wings hanging low, his feathers ruffled, and his head drawn back into his shoulders. He acted, in short, like a pouty teenager who hadn’t been allowed to go to the John Mayer concert (do teenagers actually like John Mayer, or is it only mommy bloggers? No, John Mayer, YOU say what you need to say and then shut the fuck up about it.).

Fred dosed Sad Teenager Turkey with tetracycline for a few days, but still the turkey dragged sadly around the back forty. Then, one day last week, he called me from work.

“I know what’s wrong with the turkey!” he said.

“What’s that? Is the head cheerleader ignoring him and going out with the quarterback, leaving him to drag sadly around the back forty and write bad poetry?”

“I think he has Blackhead.”

“Well, that seems appropriate. Is there anything you can do to treat it?”

“Metronidazole. Do we have any?”

“I’m in the middle of scooping litter boxes right now,” I said. “Let me call you back.”

I finished scooping litter boxes, searched in 300 locations for the Metronidazole (I really need to come up with a more organized approach at keeping all this crap in one place), and found a bottle with four pills in it. I called Fred and reported that we only had four pills.

“Can you crush the pills, mix them up with water, and give him his first dose?” Fred asked.

I set aside my initial reaction, which was to say “FUCK no, turkeys are YOUR job.” because he’s helped me dose foster kittens more times than I can remember, and I think we all know that foster kittens are MY job.

He gave me the directions for how much water to add and what the dosage should be, and I went off to crush the pills and mix them with water.

Now, I’ve crushed metronidazole pills and mixed them with water in the past because I’ve had to treat foster kittens for giardia. The kittens invariably react to metronidazole by making the most disgusted faces and flailing and foaming at the mouth and gagging.

I’ve always figured they were just being drama queens because you KNOW how baby kittens can be. It’s just drama drama DRAMA all the damn time with them. “WhineWhineWhine, I’m peeing in the litter box and she keeps batting at my tail and I don’t liiiiiiiiiike it!” or “WhineWhineWhine you was petting me and then you stopped, why you not love me no more?” or “WhineWhineWhine, that toy mouse is three inches away from me and I can’t reach it, waaaaaah!”

So I crushed the metronidazole and mixed it with water, and then drew up the correct dosage for the turkey, and I headed out to the chicken/ turkey yard. As I crossed the back yard, I rubbed my mouth with one hand.

And it appears that I had gotten some Metronidazole powder on my hand, and when I rubbed my mouth I got it on my mouth. Then a few moments later I licked my lips.

That is some godawful NASTY FUCKING HORRENDOUS FUCKING SHIT. I made the most horrendous face and gagged and foamed at the mouth and had anyone been near me, I would have kicked them.

GOOD FUCKING CHRIST. We can put men on the moon, but we can’t make Metronidazole palatable to kittens or humans?


(But kittens are still little drama queens. Just not about the Metronidazole.)

I located Sad Teenager Turkey and lured him close to me with scratch (which is cracked corn mixed with some secret ingredient – crack cocaine, I’m guessing. Maybe a titch of heroin. These birds would kill your mother for a handful of scratch.), then grabbed him up. Now, I’ve never medicated a turkey on my own before – usually Fred holds the turkey and pries his beak open and I squirt the medicine in his gullet, and when Fred lets go of the turkey, the turkey gets a thoughtful look, stares off into space for several moments, and just as you think he’s about to share the secrets of the universe, he stretches out his neck and swallows.

So I put the turkey in the doorway of the coop with his back to me, and I kind of held him against me and reached one arm around him to grab his beak. He tried to pull away, but before he could, I stuck the end of the syringe in the side of his beak and squirted the medicine in. The entire time this was going on, Hjonkie, who is apparently the head of the turkeys, was distressed and disturbed. He paced back and forth, getting ever more distressed and disturbed and vocal about it as he paced. I just knew that as I was bent over Sad Teenager Turkey, Hjonkie was going to peck me in the top of my head, and he’s a big fucking turkey (not fully-grown, but certainly getting bigger every day) and I was sure that after he pecked me, he was going to be yanking some brain matter out the top of my head.

I need all the brain matter I can get, I think you already knew that. So I kept a wary eye on Hjonkie and said in a stern voice “You back off, fuckface.” and squirted the medicine into Sad Teenager Turkey’s beak, and then let him go and backed away just as Hjonkie decided he’d had Enough of this Shit and stomped over in my direction. I stopped backing and looked at Hjonkie and said “OH. Did you have something to say to me, fucker?” and magically Hjonkie was all “Oh, is that a fly over there?” and headed off in the other direction.

Had you told me ten years ago, when I started this site, that one day I’d be medicating a Sad Teenager Turkey and showing a pushy bastard of a turkey just who was in charge (hint: IT AIN’T YOU WHO’S IN CHARGE, HJONKIE, YOU FUCK.), I completely, totally, 100% would have thought you were a bored weirdo who was making up things to freak me out.

Never know where you’re going to end up, do you?

Edited to add: After a few days of Metronidazole and a few more days of Tetracycline, Sad Teenager Turkey seems to be pretty close to normal again.


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So, Lafayette, Bill, Hoyt, and Sam were not adopted this weekend, not any of them. ::SIGH:: At least the four of them are sharing one (big) cage, so they can entertain each other.

I absolutely hated leaving them there Friday morning, but I spent almost an hour letting them sniff around the cat room and play with toys before I picked up and snuggled each of them, one by one, kissed them and hugged them and told them I loved them and to be good, and then put them in their cages.

(They started out with Bill and Lafayette in one cage, and Sam and Hoyt in another. But another cat got adopted that evening, freeing up one of the big cages, and so they all four ended up in one cage, which I like.)

I stood at the end of the aisle, where they couldn’t see me, and I watched them for a few minutes (you KNOW I was all teary-eyed like a great big baby), and they were curious and sniffing around and checking out toys, so I left and went over to Target to buy some groceries. By the time I was done at Target, it was past 9:00 (which is the time Petsmart opens), so I went back to buy cat food, and then stood at the end of the aisle and watched them. All four cats were flopped down in their cages, sound asleep.

When I got home, Sookie and Terry greeted me at the door, and they seemed a little confused like something was missing, but they weren’t quite sure. I didn’t put them in the kitten room that night, because we’d decided that we’d leave the two of them with full access to the house until it’s time for them to go to the adoption center. Besides, we were going to move the Wonkas to the kitten room Saturday morning.

I woke up at some point very early Saturday morning with seven cats on the bed with me – Terry and Sookie, Jake and Elwood, Miz Poo, Tommy, and Spanky. Most of them were pressed up against me, and I was as warm as I could be. I accidentally brushed Terry with one hand and woke him up, and he blatted at me until I started petting him, and then he purred and blatted some more.

He certainly does crack me up.

They seem to have adjusted seamlessly to the way things are, now. Their routine is that at bedtime, they run around with Jake and Elwood and race up and down the stairs, jump on each other and play-fight, and then when I turn the light off, they (eventually) settle down. Things are going well – but I sure wish the boys would get themselves adopted so I can stop worrying about them!


I don’t know if Jake has a crush on Sookie or Sookie has a crush on Jake, but they certainly like to snuggle up together.

Awww, last pic I took of Hoyt before we headed off to the adoption center!

Bill and Hoyt, right before we left for the adoption center.

Clean pile of cat beds on the table + 10 seconds = two kittens claiming the tower o’ beds for themselves.


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If you didn’t check Love & Hisses over the weekend, you missed an awesome picture of Gus.

I moved the Wonkas up to the kitten room Saturday morning, and it went quite well. I scrubbed the room down and vacuumed it, then got it set up for them, carried their litter boxes and food upstairs, then put them in the carrier and took them up to the room. It’s actually smaller than the room they were in, but it’s also a lot more kitten-friendly. There are more cat trees to climb, more toys to play with, and there’s a water fountain! They slunk around the room, sniffing at everything and occasionally coming over to me for a reassuring pat. I finally left them alone to get acquainted with their new home, and when I went back to check on them an hour later, they were all curled up in a cat bed, and were happy as could be.

Since I moved them to their new home (for the next seven weeks, at least), I decided to do away with their morning and evening bowls of watered-down formula. They’d been off the bottle for three days (I think), and I’d been watering down the formula I’d been giving them a little more every day.

Now, I give them a can of kitten food in the morning, and another can at night. For the rest of the day, they have bowls of Babycat available at all times. I’ve noticed that Gus has zero interest in the canned food, but the other three belly right up to the plate when I bring it into the room. I guess Gus marches to the beat of his own drum.

I’ve seen Gus, Veruca, and Violet drink out of the water fountain, and the pee clumps in the litter box are as plentiful as ever, so I think we’re successfully off the bottle and formula and onto the real food!

My next step with be transitioning them to Science Diet Kitten – but I’ll give them a few more days to adjust before I add that to the mix.

This will be the cover of Gus’s upcoming album of soulful love songs. The first single will be the heartbreaking ballad Why She Always Gotta Bite My Toes?

I don’t know what’s got Gus alarmed, but it must really be something!

Can someone tell me how to stop these babies from growing up so fast? Mike’s getting long and lanky!

The halo proves he’s an angel baby brought to earth to torture us all with the cute.

OH. A comment the other day reminded me that I haven’t mentioned this – the lady who was going to take Gus? It appears that she’s rethought that. Gus is still available, if anyone’s interested.

(They all are!)


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Stinkerbelle shoots me a look o’ hate from atop the canning cabinet.


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2008: No entry.
2007: I do an excellent Bob Dylan imitation. Just ask Nance!
2006: I know. I’m going to hell. At least I know I’ll have good company!
2004: More Myrtle Beach.
2003: No entry.
2002: No entry.
2001: I’ve turned into a crazy cat lady for real, haven’t I?
2000: The spud turns 12 next week, can you believe it?
1999: I’ve been out of sorts all day.

10/16/09 – Friday

Vote for me! Please? Good Mood Gig from SAM-e (It’s to become a 6-month paid blogger for SAM-e. Details are here.) Thank you all for your votes! 🙂   * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * … Continue reading “10/16/09 – Friday”

Vote for me! Please?

Vote for Me
Good Mood Gig from SAM-e

(It’s to become a 6-month paid blogger for SAM-e. Details are here.)

Thank you all for your votes! 🙂


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We like costco ground meat a lot. Higher quality and lower price than the chain grocery stores. How was their price on kitty litter compared to Sam’s?

I actually don’t know, because the only kind of litter I use is Fresh Step (the dust is a killer, but it clumps really well), and once I’d checked to be sure they don’t carry it, I didn’t even check the price on the litter they do carry.

(I feel very Vincent Vega, with that answer. “I don’t know. I didn’t go into Burger King.”)


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For the non cat owners, what is FIV?

Via Wikipedia: Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) is a lentivirus that affects domesticated housecats worldwide and is the causative agent of feline AIDS. Approximately 11% of cats worldwide, and about 2.5% of cats in the USA, are infected with FIV.

(If I ever slip and say “HIV” instead of “FIV”, please point that out to me so I can correct it. My brain keeps trying to get me to say “HIV.”)

From the reading I’ve done online, it’s unusual (though not impossible) for kittens to get FIV from their mother, so I’m keeping my fingers and toes crossed that they come up negative with their second test in 53 days.

Unlike Feline Leukemia, which can be spread through casual contact, FIV doesn’t spread as easily and FIV+ cats can often be integrated into a household with FIV- cats with no issues.

A vigilant pet owner who treats secondary infections can assist an infected cat to live a reasonably long life. (Via Wikipedia)


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I’m wondering… do you vaccinate your permanent cats for FIV? For many years, our cats were strictly indoor-only, so we didn’t get any vaccinations (no risk, so no benefit). But we recently moved to a house on a road with very little traffic and a nice fenced back-yard, so the cats have started spending time outside (they LOVE it, by the way, and I feel terribly guilty that we couldn’t let them outside for so long). We did the standard rabies and combo vaccines (distemper and whatnot), and also decided to do FIV. There are lots of wandering neighborhood cats, and FIV is so easy to spread, we didn’t want to take a risk. With your cats being outside, but maybe not so many neighbor cats to interact with…. what do you think of the FIV vaccine? Worth it? No? And even if all the other cats were vaccinated, would you still want to keep a confirmed FIV+ cat away from them? (vaccine not being 100% preventative)

Except for Maxi and Newt, none of our cats come into contact with any cats who wander through the property (I’ve never seen any strange cats come into the back yard, and our cats are kept inside at night – again, except for Maxi and Newt.). We’ve considered vaccinating those two for FIV, but if they were ever caught by animal control and tested for FIV, they’d come up positive because of the vaccination, and would likely be put down.

FIV, from what I’ve read online, is not that easily spreadable – it requires deep bite wounds and scratches, where the infected cat’s saliva enters the other cat’s bloodstream (again, via Wikipedia), and I’ve read of cases where people integrated FIV+ cats into a household with FIV- cats with no issues.

(I’ve also read that neutering male cats can help to lessen the spread of FIV, as neutered males aren’t as territorial. If you go by our cats, I’d have to agree with that – the most aggressive cats in our house are Maxi and Kara. How do I get THEM neutered, can someone tell me please??)


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I am shocked you don’t watch Food Network! It’s like a default channel for background noise. Sometimes I learn something worthwhile, mostly I get annoyed, but it’s better than ESPN.

I don’t even know if we get Food Network. And I don’t really leave the TV on for background noise – we only have one TV (I know! It’s like we’re living in the freakin’ Dark Ages!) and it’s on the other end of the house from where I spend most of my time during the day. I listen to the radio for background noise!


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Did you always tell your younger sister tall tales? I’m the oldest of five-the sister and brother closest in age to me I teased, fought with- a lot of sibling rivalry. The baby brother (8 yrs younger) and sister (11 yrs younger) I teased a little but mostly adored and protected like a second mother.

No, not really – I seem to recall telling her once that I was adopted (how dorky is that?!), but that’s all I can recall. I’m sure she’ll correct me if I’m wrong!


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The big question is – did you leave the towels up there then forever since the cats like them so much? And Now I’m thinking you probably need to add flour sack towels to your list of things to buy since you don’t have any to actually use. I understand this concept, this is why we end up with tissue paper and boxes left out for weeks – because the kitties like ’em.

Oh, that pile of towels is still up there. Every once in a while if there’s no cat up there, I’ll pull out a towel or two. The pile is slowly diminishing, but I suppose that if I want to get all my towels, I need to put a cat bed up there for them to lay on instead!


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We are moving to a house with a bay window and I will need to get cat beds. Do your cats favor one kind over another? (Right now our tabby will sleep on anything but always chooses to sleep on the thing you most don’t want furred up. Our Siamese gets annoyed that we are taking up so much room in HIS bed.)

My cats aren’t terribly picky – it’s really about location; if I put a bed on my desk, they’ll eventually end up in it, no matter what it’s like. They really like the round Berber Faux Sheepskin beds, like this.

Also, I have these square beds with high sides that I picked up at Big Lots.

And they like them. They’re also fond of cushy beds with high sides.

But if I had to recommend one, it’d be a faux sheepskin bed – they come in small (like at the Petsmart link) or they come in a larger size, which you might have to venture over to the dog section to find.


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I just looked through your virtual tour of your houses. The first tour was so different! The Spud had toys all over her room, Miz Poo (who you referred to as “the kitten” followed you everywhere, AND there was a picture of “4 of the 5 cats.” !!!!!!!!!!!! 🙂

HA – I can’t believe there was a time when we only had FIVE cats. And I’m sure I regularly said “I can’t believe we have FIVE cats. That’s so many! We’ll never have more than that!”

For those of you who don’t look over at the sidebar, there’s a link (to the right) that says “Virtual House Tour”, and it’s got tours of all three houses we’ve lived in since I started this journal ten (!) years ago.

Man, I can’t believe we used to have a cookie jar collection.


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Do you just walk around the house with the camera strapped to your side all the time? Or do you have a camera in every room or? I ask because it seems like whenever my cats are doing anything amusing or cute, the camera is in another room or too far away to have even a chance of capturing the moment before it ends.

Nah – usually either something’s going on in the computer room, and I always have at least one camera within arms’ length so I can start snapping pictures in just a few seconds, or I’m going into the kitten room and grab a camera to take in with me. For every cute picture I get, there are probably ten that I wish I’d caught. With 21 cats in one house (albeit temporarily!), you can pretty much bet that any time you wander through the house with the camera, there’s going to be something interesting to take a picture of.


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I finally got myself and my girls some new kittens. Both of our much loved Cats passed over the summer. You would think they are still here, as much as we talk of them. But someone dropped some kittens at a bank here in town,and I stopped in and you can guess the rest! But the kittens would not purr for 2days? they do now, a lot, but have you ever seen that before? they are both sweet personalities, and beautiful tabbies…..Thanks love the blog!

Oh, I’ve definitely seen that before – are they very young? It seems like when they’re very little, they don’t know how that purring thing is supposed to go, and then they accidentally do it, and decide it’s kind of neat, and then they do it all the time!

Or maybe they were just nervous for the first few days. 🙂


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I’ve had several requests for close-up pictures of the boys who are going off to the adoption center today. I did my best to get pictures yesterday, and paired them up with “befores” – some of the “afters” are not so great, because these kittens were on FIRE yesterday, racing around like crazy. When they weren’t doing that, they were sleeping like the dead. In other words, it was hard to get good close-up pictures of them, but I did my best!

(And for the record, Terry is NOT becoming a permanent resident – he and Sookie are staying here for a little while longer because they’re not completely healed from their surgery. And there’s no way I could decide to keep Terry – because there’s no way on earth I could take Sookie to the adoption center alone. I’d feel horrible for her!)

Click on any of the pictures to see a much larger version.

Bill, before and now. I completely forgot he was such a little fuzzball! If you recall, Bill’s the one who sat around all the time with his eyes squinted mostly shut. Terry’s eyes were worse, but Bill seemed to be in more discomfort, thus the squinting. Now, Bill has his eyes open most of the time (except when I try to use the flash around him!), and we can see that he’s cross-eyed. Just adds to his charm, if you ask me! You can see how before, he had a jagged eyeline, which is why at first I thought his lids had been ripped at some point. He’s such a handsome boy.

Hoyt, before and now. Before, Hoyt’s right eye was bothering him the most – now, it’s not bothering him at all. It’s still (if you look closely) a bit smaller than the other eye, and occasionally he squints the right eye a little, but ointment or eye drops fixes that pretty quickly.

Sam, before and now. You can see pretty clearly the missing parts of Sam’s upper eyelids, before – especially his right eye. Now, he’s got a lovely, smooth eyeline. The other cats have big round eyes now, but Sam’s got more of an exotic slant to his. Such a gorgeous boy!

Lafayette, before and now. I’m sorry the “before” picture isn’t the greatest – I lightened it the best I can. If you look at it in the larger size, you can see how it looked like there were chunks of eyelid missing from both sides. Now, he’s got that same lovely, smooth eyeline. He opens his eyes more now, too – and he’s actually not as cross-eyed as he was when he was wee. Still a bit cross-eyed, but like Bill, it just adds to his charm. I love his serious little face!

On the table: Hoyt. On the chair: Lafayette, Terry and Sookie.

I swear, that blanket had been laying on the table for PERHAPS ten minutes before Hoyt sensed its presence, and jumped up there to fall asleep on it.

Smilin’ Hoyt.

From my comments:

I thought hissing and spitting were the same? Can you enlighten me? Thanks!

Boy, you’ve kind of got me stumped! The only way I can think of to describe the difference is that hissing is a longer sound, like a long exhalation, whereas spitting is a short sound and sounds like the kitten or cat is actually spitting something at you.

Anyone got a better way to describe it? I know the difference, it’s just hard to explain it!

Robyn…will this be the hardest group to leave at the adoption centre of all the groups you’ve had? What with all their issues and surgeries they are just the cuddliest, funniest bunch!

Maybe. All the groups are always very hard to leave, because I always fall completely head over heels in love with them and can’t imagine having to give them up. There’s always a point where I say “I cannot do this. I can’t take them there and leave them. I’M KEEPING THEM ALL!”

(I’m kind of going through that right now.)

What helps is that I stay in the cat room with them until they seem comfortable, and I wait until they’re distracted by toys before I tiptoe out of the room. And they’re ALWAYS distracted by toys and sniffing the cages, and checking out the food. I almost always hide at the end of the aisle and watch them to make sure they’re okay, and so far not a one of them has suddenly looked up and said “Hey. Where’d that lady go? WHY WOULD SHE ABANDON US LIKE THIS?!”

You’d think this would get easier, but so far (4 1/2 years, close to 100 fosters), it hasn’t.

And now off I go to get the boys settled in their temporary homes, because I am CERTAIN that someone’s going to come along and fall in love with every one of them TONIGHT.

(Fingers crossed!)


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“Ha ha HAAAAA! Those little kittens are going, and I shall be the king of the house once again!”


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2008: O lord, what is a wimpy hater of wasps to do?
2007: No entry.
2006: It’s like when you’re in the car and you smell something, so you turn down the radio and sniff harder.
2005: No entry.
2004: No entry.
2003: “That’s because it fucking HURTS!” I yelled.
2002: TV talk.
2001: Is it just Fred and I that immediately think “Chrissie-anthemums”, or did y’all see that episode of Three’s Company as well?
2000: The Spider Dance.

10/15/09 – Thursday

Oh, the PMS fairy has arrived in full force, that bitch. It’s not until the Day o’ Rage arrives that the two preceding days of boohooing given the slightest provocation (sad commercials, sweet kittens, stain on my shirt) make sense. And I’ve probably mentioned this before, but knowing the reason for the Day o’ Rage … Continue reading “10/15/09 – Thursday”

Oh, the PMS fairy has arrived in full force, that bitch. It’s not until the Day o’ Rage arrives that the two preceding days of boohooing given the slightest provocation (sad commercials, sweet kittens, stain on my shirt) make sense. And I’ve probably mentioned this before, but knowing the reason for the Day o’ Rage does not lessen the Rage in the slightest.

I was okay until after I got back from the vet and doing laundry and found that the laundry I’d put in the dryer two days ago was still wet. Because I hadn’t started the dryer. Which meant stinky clothes in the dryer. Which meant I had to rewash them. Which meant a temper tantrum.


And then I took the tomatoes which had been sitting out thawing for the last day, and I was going to run them through the food mill, then put them on the stove to simmer all day, so I could can them today. When I put the third tomato in the food mill and it popped like a zit, spraying tomato juice all over the fucking place, I decided I’D HAD ENOUGH OF THE GODDAMNED TOMATOES. Which meant a temper tantrum.


I stomped out to the chicken yards and tossed all the tomatoes to the chickens, who looked at the tomatoes like “What is THIS shit you’re trying to foist off on us” like the ungrateful motherfuckers they are, and I believe I probably yelled “GO FUCK YOURSELVES, YOU FUCKING ASSWIPES EAT THEM OR STARVE I DON’T CARE!” at them.


Then I came inside and spent – I fucking shit you not – half an hour trying to get a decent image of the book I’m currently reading, so I could FTP it up to my site and link to it in the sidebar. (Yes, I’m aware that Goodreads has a widget for just such an occasion. I don’t like the look of it, and I can’t figure out how to edit it to make it look the way I want.) I finally found a decent one, and FTP’d it up annnnnnd… it wasn’t there. FTP’d it up again. Not there.

FTP’d it up.

Not there.

FTP’d it up.

Not there.

Cue the bellowing. The GODDAMNing. The MOTHERFUCKing. The WHATTHEFUCK??ing.

The rebooting.


Cue the tantrum.


Tantrum completed, I uploaded the image to another place completely, where it uploaded successfully, linked to it in the sidebar, and since I’d blown that half hour I’d INTENDED to spend vacuuming the house fucking around with images and FTPing, I got up to go out to the chicken yards. I go out around 12:30 every day to toss out scratch for chickens, check on babies, give the dogs a treat, and gather eggs.

As I stood up, I glanced out into the back yard and noticed that Sugarbutt was sitting, watching something near the back steps VERY intently. I thought I could hear the sound of a bird being tortured, and then Kara ran across the back yard. I ran to the back door to prevent any half-dead creatures from entering my house, and saw Lafayette.

That little fucker had figured out the cat door. And he’d gone outside. AND Bill was sniffing at the cat door in a very interested manner.

I shooed Bill away from the door and then opened the door and sputtered at Lafayette, who turned and looked at me, all “HAI!”

“Get in here!” I said sternly, and he did.

“Get away from the door!” I said, and shot a blast of canned air at him. He ran into the kitchen.

I grabbed my basket for egg-gathering and a cup of scratch, and headed out to the chicken yards. I checked on baby chickens and fed the dogs their snacks and gathered eggs, and then trudged back to the house. I was putting the basket of eggs on the shelf unit by the door when I HAPPENED to glance at the door and saw Lafayette casually push his way through the cat door and skip-a-doodle-doo down the steps. Then Bill walked over to the cat door and pushed his head through, all “HOWYADOIN’ OUT THERE, BRO?!”

Why, hello tantrum time.


I stomped over to the door and shot a blast of compressed air at Bill, who ran into the kitchen. I flung open the door and bellowed “GET IN HERE!” at Lafayette. There might have been a string of obscenities involved.

I know that it will surprise you, but bellowing angrily at a kitten does not so much make the kitten want to run TOWARD you. Lafayette skipped the rest of the way down the steps and began running across the back yard. I turned around and put my boots on, then ran out after him.

He ran across the yard in great big happy leaps, all “I AM FREE FROM THE TYRANNY AND OPPRESSION OF BEING CONFINED TO 2200 SQUARE FEET! I AM FREE! FREE, I SAY! THE WORLD IS MY OYSTER!!!!” I ran after him, swearing all the while (but also kind of laughing because the great big leaps were funny). I finally caught him when he reached the fence and stood there staring at it, thinking “I CAN SEE THROUGH IT, YET I CANNOT WALK THROUGH IT. IT IS A WINDOW?”

I scooped him up and carried him back to the house, telling him the entire way that he was very bad, then shut the back door. Sugarbutt and Tommy were still in the back yard, but they know how to bang on the door in the perfect way to annoy me, so I figured if they wanted in, they’d let me know.

Then I was going to eat lunch, but do you suppose that there was ANYTHING in the house for lunch? OF COURSE NOT, and OF COURSE I hadn’t planned ahead.


I ended up using one of those sandwich thins, split it open, slapped pizza sauce on it, put a few pepperoni and a sprinkle of cheese on it, then broiled it.

In retrospect: 1. The pepperoni tasted kinda funny; I have no idea how long it had been sitting in there. 2. Not enough protein, which always makes me crash.

Half an hour later – the gas to end all gas.


Finally, I gave up and retired to the bedroom, where I crashed for about half an hour with Hoyt snuggled up to me on one side and Bill snuggled up to me on the other.

When I got up, the gas wasn’t gone, but I was in a better mood. I think that the cute fuzziness of Bill and Hoyt combined drove off that goddamn PMS fairy.

She’s not EVEN welcome here, but you KNOW she’ll be back again next month. Bitch.


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First: Sookie went to the vet yesterday because her eyes didn’t seem to be getting better despite the oral antibiotics and the antibiotic ointment. They took her temperature (it was normal) and the vet looked her over and said that she thought that perhaps the antibiotic ointment was irritating her eyes, that I should go to regular “tears” (GenTeal makes a gel eyedrop that works really well) and give it a few days to see how that works. She could need a steroid shot to help the swelling – hopefully by Monday she’ll be looking better. She spent most of the day yesterday sleeping on a chair in the dining room, but she also got up and played a few times.

Second: Someone emailed and pointed out that I am horribly lax as far as providing pictures of Sookie lately, which I knew because over the weekend I went through my pictures to send the shelter manager pictures of each of the cats, and couldn’t find a decent shot of Sookie since mid-September. My only excuse is that she’s a quiet cat who tends to go off and sleep in out of the way places, as opposed to her loud, obnoxious, in-your-face brothers, and when I have the camera out I tend to take pictures of the cats around me. I’ll do better in the future, I promise!

Third: Sam, Hoyt, Lafayette, and Bill are going to the adoption center tomorrow morning. I will miss the heck out of them (and I’m sure I’ll be a big, sobbing baby when I have to leave them there), so I’m keeping my fingers crossed that they’re adopted quickly – y’all keep your fingers crossed too, okay?

Terry does his road kill impression. Seriously, I don’t know how that could possibly be comfortable.

Elwood and Hoyt, snuggled up on a dining room chair. See that bit of kitten body over to the middle? That would be Sookie. She likes to make it difficult to get a decent picture of her.

Bill has his way with the blanket.

Lafayette’s in charge of kitten cleanliness this week.

Sookie and Sam on the cat tree in the front room.

Bill gets his daily allowance of cardboard.

“Hey, come back! There’s room for both of us in here!”


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Since four of the True Bloods will be going to the adoption center tomorrow, I’m going to be moving the Wonkas up to the foster kitten room this weekend. I hope they don’t get too freaked out – I suspect that they’ll think it’s pretty neat, with the rug to keep their toes warm, the cat towers to climb on, and all the toys to play with. Not to mention the water fountain to splash around in!

Poor Gus – someone’s always chomping on him. I think they think he’s made of cotton candy.

Have I mentioned I want to squeeze Mike to death?


I don’t encourage them climbing up my legs, but it certainly makes me laugh. Maybe when they have cat towers to climb, they won’t feel the need to climb me?

Fightin’ time!

Bath time!


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“Yes, operator? I’d like to make a long-distance call. Operator? OPERATOR? DARN these tabby-foot phones, they’re always dropping the connection!”


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2008: Sam’s might be the ruination of this nation, but GODDAMN do I love that store.
2007: if you set foot in Crooked Acres, the law is that you admire not only the And3rson kitties, but also the And3rson fosters.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.
2004: Pretty beach pictures!
2003: I’m afraid Miz Poo’s reign as Queen Shit may be coming to a close.
2002: Elvis sneer, zits, weird wiry hair. What next, I ask you?
2001: Cheater entry.
2000: No entry.
1999: Fascinating, isn’t it?!