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10/31/11 – Monday

by @ Monday, October 31st, 2011. Filed under Fostering, Life

First thing first: the 2012 calendars are FINALLY available! Betty reminded me, I kid you not, TWO months ago that it was about time to get my butt in gear, and first I promised them at the end of September, annnnnd THAT didn’t happen. As I promise every year, I’ll try to do better next year! All the calendars are marked up by $1, and all profits go to Challenger’s House.

I’ll put this up at the top of the entries for the rest of the week for those who don’t read every day or who read via a reader, and after this week they’ll be in the sidebar to the right. Well, they’re already in the sidebar to the right, but after this week they’ll only be in the sidebar.

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Behold, I live!

The last week and a half has crawled by, let me tell you. There’s just nothing on the face of this earth as boring as recovering from surgery, though thankfully I had lots on the DVR to watch to keep me entertained, but still – BO-RING.

I’m doing well – I saw the surgeon on Thursday and got the okay to start scooping the litter boxes again (Fred was thrilled!) and basically I can do anything except heavy lifting or anything that would require turning my head all the way to either side. The nurse took out the stitches in front of my ears and half of the stitches under my chin, and I go back this Thursday to have the rest of the stitches out.

Naturally, I came home and immediately overdid it and had to force myself to slow the hell down. It’s just harrrrrd when there’s so much to do, you know?

I also got the okay to stop wearing the head garment unless I’m doing something active, but I’ve been wearing it almost all the time because it reminds me not to turn my head to the side.

At this point, I am THRILLED with the results of this revision, and I promise that SOME DAY I will get around to taking pictures of my neck and my arms so that y’all can see how the surgery went.

I ALSO got the okay to chew food, which meant that I could stop eating Spaghetti-Os, grits, soup, and scrambled eggs. I can’t chew anything too hard yet (like a steak), but softer stuff, like burgers and noodley casseroles is fine.

I’m back to cooking, too.

I’m hoping that in another week or so, I’ll be back to doing just about everything. Those litter boxes aren’t going to scrub themselves, y’know.

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Today is our 13th anniversary and we’re celebrating by taking the pigs to the processor. Do we know how to party, or what? I am going to miss these pigs because they are SO handy when it comes to getting rid of kitchen waste (especially the stuff we can’t compost). We’re not planning to get pigs again until the spring, so for now the pig yard will get a rest, and Fred will have a chance to fill in all the holes the pigs made with some of the dirt from the pond.

(Speaking of the pond, we got rain last week. We have no standing water in the pond, but it’s early yet. I suspect by mid-winter, it’ll be a different story.)

I got word back about my big camera, the one I’ve used to take thousands of pictures over the past five years, the one that a cat peed on, and I picked up and dropped on the floor a few weeks ago. It was damaged beyond repair, which doesn’t surprise me in the slightest because it sounded really, really broken when I was trying to get it to work after I’d dropped it. So we replaced it with another (newer) Sony DSLR, which arrived while I was recovering from surgery and which is currently sitting on the bookcase in the front room. I haven’t even taken it out of the box yet, but I plan to in the next few days. For the time being, I’m using my little Sony W300, which takes pictures that aren’t nearly as nice, but will do in a pinch.

It turned cold here in the last week – I know those of you who got snow over the weekend are sobbing and rending your garments at the idea that I might be chilly for a moment or two – and so I got out the electric throw for the front room. If I’m not actively using the heated throw, I turn it off, but about half the time one of the kittens runs over the control and it gets turned back on, and I’ll walk into the living room to see the throw (which sits on the recliner when I’m not using it) covered in kittens. When I am actively using it, I end up covered in at least two or three kittens. I should probably just lay it out along the couch when I’m not using it, so the maximum number of kittens can lay on it.

I need to get out the heated bed for the cat house on the front porch in the next few days, too, and while I’m at it I might as well get out the heated cat beds out to put in various places around the house.

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Spanky’s not waiting for me to put out the heated cat beds, though. He made his own! (Box on top of the heat vent = pretty warm!)

Oh, that reminds me – when I walked into the front room Saturday morning to scoop the litter boxes (which are kept in front of the fireplace at the end of the room opposite where the TV and couches are), I could feel the cold air POURING down the chimney. We ended up duct taping a piece of cardboard over the hole to the chimney, which helped a lot, but it’s still colder over there (and thus in the front room) than I’d like it to be.

There was a time when I wanted to put a wood stove in the front room, but it hasn’t happened by now and to be honest I don’t think either of us is that interested in making it happen (and I can’t interest Fred in a pellet stove). What we really ought to do is brick up the damn fireplace, but it’s possible that after we’re dead and gone whoever owns this house after us might want to use the fireplace as a fireplace (I am so thoughtful, y’all KNOW that your average bear would be all “FUCK the next owners!”), so I’m looking for a long-term temporary solution. Got suggestions? My ears are open!

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The daily routine these days is like such: Fred gets up in the morning and closes my bedroom door. Then he opens the foster room door and lets the big Peppers out of their room. He goes downstairs and lets Charlie and Patty out of their room, and then the kittens all run around like the wild things they are.

When I eventually get up, I scoop the litter boxes and greet all the kittens and cats, and the kittens are allowed to stay out and race around the house all day until about 8:30, when Charlie and Patty go into their room and the big Peppers go into their room for the night and the permanent residents get a bit of peace.

Between the permanents and the fosters, there are 20 cats in this house at the moment. I’ve determined that 18 – 20 cats is the tipping point where we enter “My god, this house smells like a litter box!” territory, and we are reminded yet again just why it is that we went from 100% Cat Attract litter in the litter boxes to half Cat Attract and half Fresh Step. The Cat Attract litter is good litter (and pretty dust-free), but it does NOT hold down the litter box smells the way Fresh Step does. If Fresh Step wasn’t so incredibly, horribly dusty, that would be the only litter I use, but alas it is (dusty) so it isn’t (my only litter).

The Peppers Gang is ready for adoption, we’re just waiting for there to be room at Petsmart. And Charlie and Patty will be going for their spaying and neutering next week (I just need to make the appointment), and once that’s done, they’ll be ready to go, too.

Considering how hissy-spitty the big Peppers were when we got them, it blows my mind how super-friendly they are now. Especially…. well, I was going to say especially Molly, but it’s true for all of them.

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Harlan and Everett, snuggled up for a nap.

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This time of year, when you see a gathering of very interested looking kittens, it means a wasp has gotten inside. I have to step in and squoosh the wasp so they don’t get stung.

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“Where’d it go?”

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Charlie Peppers loves him some Everett. Everett’s all “Why meeeee?”

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Miz Poo and Patty Peppers. (Miz Poo: “If I don’t look at her, there’s no kitten there…)

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Definitely not blue-eyed anymore.

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Harlan lets his southern roots shine through.

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Charlie says “Hallo, Tom Cullen, you up for a snuggle?”
Tommy says “Hallo, little man, you just keep on moving. Tommy needs some alone time.”

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“He’s TAKING up half the bed. I’d like to stretch out and nap, but there’s hardly any space for me! MOVE him!”

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Pretty Molly Peppers, daydreaming.

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Elwood sleeps like this a lot and it cracks me UP.

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Previously
2010: No entry.
2009: No entry.
2008: Holy crap! Ten years!
2007: Holy crap, I’ve been married for 9 years!
2006: We’ve been married for eight years now. And they said it’d never last!
2005: Let the Seven Year Itch commence!
2004: Happy anniversary, you walnut-farting motherfucker.
2003: We’ve been married for five years as of today.
2002: He even sent me flowers.
2001: And they said it’d never last.
2000: And happy anniversary to Fred, who married me two years ago tonight, which was the smartest thing he’s ever done.
1999: “We don’t have to get married. We could just wait ’til next year. Shouldn’t we get married on the anniversary of the day we met? That would be more romantic!”

10/26/11 – Wednesday

by @ Wednesday, October 26th, 2011. Filed under Fostering, Life

Katie says:

The cat rescue organization that I volunteer for, the Goathouse Refuge in Pittsboro, NC, has gotten a $10,000 matching grant if they can earn an equivalent amount by the end of November, so they’re having a big fundraiser. This would be really great for them, since their budget is really tight and donations are down 60% so far this year.

Here’s their news post about the matching grant campaign.

Please help if you can!

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Amber in Oregon said:

My friend from work has a dog named Buddy. She adopted Buddy from another home (you can check out Buddy’s page for more about his story if you like; it can describe the situation better than I can). Over the year that she’s had Buddy, he has flourished and become a happy, healthy, sweet little buddy (couldn’t think of a better word!), and has brought my friend so much happiness through his companionship.

However, over this past weekend, he suddenly started having major health problems and is now in the veterinary ICU. The vets have not yet figured out what’s wrong, but are in the process of doing tests. Unfortunately, all of this is very expensive (Buddy needs to stay at the vet 24/7 right now and is in an oxygen unit) and my friend is just about out of resources to cover the expenses. She’s having to face the difficult situation of what to do if she just plain runs out of money.

You can read more about Buddy at his page, and there’s an email link there if you have any questions for his owner, as well as a Paypal link if you’d like to help Buddy with his medical expenses. If nothing else, go over and see Buddy’s sweet little face and send lots of love and good thoughts his way!

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Happy happy birthday to the spud, who turns 23 (TWENTY-THREE, CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT???) today! I won’t go on about her – you can read more posts about her in previous years – but I will include one of my favorite pictures of her, which I’m sure I’ve only posted about 300 times before.

Spud20

So. Freakin’. Cute.

Happy birthday, Danielle!!!

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I am healing quite well from surgery, thank you. I’ve spent the last week in the recliner, in the living room, surrounded by varying numbers of cats. I’m getting tired of this whole healing thing, and I’m hoping that after I see the surgeon on Friday, I’ll get the okay to sleep in a more reclined (ie, laying in bed) position AND to eat chewy foods. I am tired of soups, Spaghetti-Os, grits, scrambled eggs, and chocolate pudding cups.

(That’s a lie: I am not sick of chocolate pudding cups because they are WAY too good.)

What I want more than anything is a great big salad, and I know that hearing that I’ve been eating pudding and Spaghetti-Os and am craving salad makes me one of those annoying assholes who’ll probably say “My goodness, I ate half a saltine and I am STUFFED!” next and you want to smack me hard, but I’ve always liked a good salad and also if you try to smack me, Miz Poo will rise up and sneeze in your face, so check yourself, fool.

They finished the pond, and we have 38 bazillion tons of dirt in the middle of the back forty, and perhaps I will get a picture to show y’all one day soon.

For the record, I don’t know why they dug the pond in a rectangular shape. I think that it might have been easier for them to do it that way. And no, it didn’t cost us more than a roundish pond would have – I’ve seen plenty of rectangular ponds around here, so perhaps it’s a regional thing. Also, that pond might be the size of a pool, but the fact that I live in Alabama and that there are snakes that like to swim in water in these parts have made it a fact that I am not swimming in that pond EVER, although Fred has said that as soon as there’s enough water in the pond to swim in, he’ll do it once, before the snakes and other scary water creatures show up.

Okay, I’m posting some pictures and a video and hauling my butt back to the recliner. I’ll be back Monday for real!

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Every now and then, Joe Bob slips out of the collar that keeps him in the back yard, and he comes to find me. I don’t know how on earth he slips out of that collar, sometimes it’s still clasped when I find it, sometimes it’s like he sprouted temporary opposable thumbs and opened the clasp on his own. He never goes far, and he always comes when we call, so I don’t worry too much about him. I do scold him when he does it, though. He just gives me the slow-blink love eyes, and really – how can I be mad at him?

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“Hi, Mom! I’m here to visit!”

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Have you ever seen such a happy boy?

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Happy Joe.

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Smilin’ Joe.

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Jobey Joe.

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Rough life, ain’t it, Joe?

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Pretty, pretty Joe. I know I always say it, but it bears repeating: sweetest boy on EARTH.

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Miss Molly has earned the nickname “The hussy” because once you start petting her, she rolls around on her back and purrs and purrs forever.

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Snoozin’ Charlie Peppers.

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Harlan and Everett knocked this (empty) egg carton to the floor and acted like it was the best toy ever.

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Tasty, apparently (and when I took it away from them they were sooo mad at me).

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Annoyed Charlie.

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“What the…?”

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“It’s a giant sparkle ball! Someone left me a giant sparkle ball! This is the most awesome thing ever!”

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“What’s this?”
“Oh, just a giant sparkle ball. ::shrug:: You touch it, I kill you.”

Lucy Peppers was in a cat bed on my desk, chasing her tail. Of course, the instant I turned on the camera to get proof, she stopped completely and was like “Who, me? Nothin’!”

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I wouldn’t want you to forget the beauty that is Corbie. Consider this your reminder!

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Previously
2010: Guess who’s 22 today?
2009: Happy 21st birthday, Danielle!
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.

10/24/11 – Monday

by @ Monday, October 24th, 2011. Filed under Fostering, Life, medical crap

Thank you, those of you who voted for Gracie in the Greenies contest over the past few weeks. As we went into Friday evening – voting was supposed to stop at midnight Friday – Gracie was in first place and whoever was in second place was about 300 votes behind. They didn’t shut down voting at midnight, which I’d expected they would, so Saturday afternoon Gracie ended up in second place to a dog I hadn’t even noticed before. I don’t know if Gracie made it back to first place again before they finally got around to shutting down the voting, and I don’t know if they’ll count the votes that were cast after midnight Friday or not, so Gracie ended up either in first place or second, depending on how they’re planning to do that. At this point, it’s up to the judges to decide who won anyway, so maybe she wins and maybe she doesn’t – I’ll certainly let y’all know if I find anything out!

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Renee has a question that some of you might be able to help with:

I guess you’d call me the neighborhood cat lady. A month or so ago I caught the local mama kitty and well she’s currently pregnant and living isolated in a room. Until recently I am not allowed to touch her. If your hand gets too close she’ll pop you. Recently she’s gotten very loving – on her terms. At night when I go in, she runs over to me and will rub all over me. I am still not allowed to touch her even though she rubs all over me. I know as they get closer to giving birth they can get very loving. Lately though I can barely get out of the room. When I go to stand up she runs around and tries to block me. Tonight she put herself between me and the door and would hiss or pop at me if I tried to move towards it. I’m not sure what’s up with the possessiveness and I”m not sure how or if I’d ever be able to get her to allow me to touch her, but I didn’t know if you or any of your readers might have some advice or experience.

Advice/ suggestions very much welcome!

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The Goathouse Refuge in Pittsboro, NC needs help raising funds! If they can raise $10,000 by November 30th, they will receive $10,000 in matching funds! Go read more about it here, and help out if you can, please?

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I came through surgery just fine, thankfully. The worst part of going into any surgery (this is just my opinion) is having the IV started. When I had the (non-cancerous) tumor on my knee removed when I was a teenager, they had a hell of a time getting my IV started, and had to poke me three or four times before they finally did. In all the surgeries I’ve had since then, though, they’ve never had a problem. But it’s the anticipation of having the IV started that just sucks, and nothing else about surgery fills me with dread the way that does. What’s that, I’m going to be laying there stark naked surrounded by 45 strangers, all casting judgemental looks at me? Whatever, I’ll be asleep, ask me if I CARE (I do not).

So I felt my usual dread Wednesday morning when the anesthesiologist came out to start my IV. And he injected first one vein with that god-awful local that numbs the area (which, if you ask me, is worse than the fucking IV itself) and couldn’t get the IV into that vein, so went after another vein and nope, that one didn’t work either, and so he tried poking around a little to see if he could make it work.

And he hit a fucking NERVE, a literal NERVE. I am stoic, and don’t let anyone tell you different, and you could probably be hacking at my arm to remove it, with no anesthetic, and I might mildly say “Oh, that stings just a teeny bit.” while inside I am screaming, but when he hit that vein, and that zap of PAIN went jolting up my hand, I pretty much levitated up off the bed and made him decide to give up on that hand.

He went on to my right hand and just did the IV without the local (thankyoujesus) and got it in, and then it all went very quickly (in a private clinic, shit gets done quickly as opposed to a hospital where you show up at 5:30 for an 11:00 surgery time and they ultimately get you back there around 3 in the afternoon; in a private clinic there are not those pesky emergencies taking up operating rooms, I guess), and Fred came back to kiss me and say goodbye, and off I went.

The surgery took a couple of hours, and I was home in my recliner a little after noon.

Since the day of surgery, I’ve been doing a lot of snoozing in the recliner. It’s comfortable enough, but I really wish we had one of those really big recliners that you can really get comfortable in. The dressing they put on my head after surgery was absolutely huge, so I was glad to see the surgeon on Friday and have the dressing and drain removed, and a smaller garment put in place.

I was able to shower on Saturday for the first time since Wednesday, and it was really nice.

Yesterday I moved from narcotic painkillers to Tylenol/ Advil, and it’s doing a good job at keeping the pain at bay. I go back to the surgeon on Friday, where I think they’ll remove my stitches and staples and look me over to determine that I’m healing okay.

Speaking of all that, when the nurse took the dressing off from around my face on Friday, Fred told me that (1) I looked like a chipmunk (because my cheeks were swollen) and (2) he was pretty sure they’d moved my ears (the nurse told me they did no such thing). He’s so helpful, isn’t he?

So anyway, so far so good on the healing. I can’t really chew anything, so I’ve been eating the hell out of Spaghetti-Os, grits, soup, and chocolate pudding.

I’m planning to take the rest of the week off from blogging, though knowing me I’ll pop in to post pictures once or twice – or maybe not. In any case, if I don’t post again between now and Monday, rest assured that I’m taking it easy in the recliner, and I’ll be back!

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The original head dressing, which I had on my head from Wednesday to Friday. I post this picture because it is super KLASSY, with that bra hanging off the hook by the door. What can I say? I wanted to take the damn thing off as soon as I got home!

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Yeah, my glasses are too big for my face and also crooked. Shaddup. This is what I’m wearing on my head now. It’s a lot less bulky and a lot more comfortable.

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Luckily, cake doesn’t require much chewing, and I had a Groupon for Peggy Ann Bakery that needed to be used before mid-November, so Fred went by and got us a cake (the pigs got the better part of it because I found that I wasn’t all that hungry for cake when I was doped up on the narcotics.)

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So, the pond is dug. The guys worked hard on it all week long, and round about, oh, Wednesday, they told Fred that hey – there’s a lot of dirt! They told him that there was more dirt than they’d expected (!) and, um, sucks to be us. So Fred put a sign by the side of the road advertising dirt for sale, and I don’t know what exactly is going to happen if no one comes along and wants some of that dirt. I guess we’re going to have a hill out there. Or something.

Anyway.

We have a pond!

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The dirt from the pond.

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The pond, which is about 60 x 120 feet, and about 8 feet deep at the deeper (farther) end.

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Nothing to do with the pond, I just thought this was neat.

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I have to say that I miss Buster an awful lot (reports are that he’s doing just fine at Petsmart, but hasn’t been adopted yet), but things are just so amazingly peaceful around here. I think I hadn’t realized just how UN-peaceful life had gotten and how tense it was making me until things went back to relatively peaceful.

The kittens are being pretty good while I recover from surgery – occasionally one will climb up in my lap for a nap, but for the most part they play around me and near me, and lay on the couch near my chair, but don’t run across my face or anything like that, which is good.

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Everett, looking regal.

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Charlie Peppers loves the big cats. He spends a lot of time snuggling up to Elwood and Tommy.

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I love how it looks like Charlie’s gone all Tasmanian Devil on Elwood’s tail, and Elwood doesn’t even notice.

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(Ignore the dirty rug by the door – Fred hadn’t vacuumed yet)

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Charlie and Everett.

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Charlie, Everett, and Tommy.

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Elwood sure does love that Tommy.

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Previously
2010: No entry.
2009: No entry.
2008: Questions answered.
2007: Then I’m sure they hung up and said “We just bought ourselves six weeks of NO CALLS from Mr. And3rson. Boo-yah!”
2006: Okay. I have a LOT of favorite things about the house, I cannot lie.
2005: “That makes me want to get pregnant and have a baby, just so I can name it Lavernicus,” I admitted. “That WOULD be an excellent name.”
2004: No entry.
2003: It took two days from the first time I called Stanley “Beanie-bean” in front of Fred before Fred started doing it too. He’s such a copycat.
2002: “She was giving me a handjob under the water, and I didn’t stop her, even though I’m not attracted to her, BECAUSE I AM ONLY HUMAN.”
2001: Fred is a freak.
2000: “Uhhhh….” I said, casting around for something smart-ass or impressive to say.
1999: My desk is a total shitheap, because I’m Robyn and I’m a slob

10/21/11 – Friday

by @ Friday, October 21st, 2011. Filed under CAE, Fostering, Life

(Please note: I did not proofread. Pardon any typos.)

From Karen –

I volunteer with a small rescue group near Raleigh, NC named Alley Cats and Angels. We were recently contacted by another group looking for help with a very bad neglect situation. We took in three kittens and three adults, all in very poor shape. They’ve all been to the vet now, and though at first one vet thought at least one of the adults might be too far gone (she feared the foot wound infection had gone into the bones), we are now hopeful that all will be able to make it with proper care. But we could really use some help with the medical expenses for these cats, so have started a chipin campaign.

Our blog will be updated with ongoing status for these guys as they progress. The initial post about them is here.

Once again, the ChipIn for these poor kittens and cats is here. If you can help out, please do. Always remember that every little bit helps!

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Vote for Gracie! It’s the last week of voting. Gracie’s currently solidly in first place, and I’d like to keep her that way. After Friday, the three judges get to decide who wins, so it’s not in the bag for Gracie even if she gets a bazillion votes – but it certainly won’t hurt!

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Just so you know, I am currently recovering from surgery, so I wrote this entry ahead (wrote it on Tuesday) and scheduled it to post so you wouldn’t have to go without. I’m sure posting will go back to normal(ish) on Monday or thereabouts.

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Robyn! I had no idea you were covering for your polygamist Rooster! How many of those kids are his?? Does he keep each family in separate houses ala Big Love??? Does he share himself equally or does he fancy one hen more than others???

Oh, there are NO separate houses for this big, happy family! They all share one big house and (horrors!) the same big room! There are plenty of roosts in there so they have plenty of room and aren’t all up in each others’ space. As far as I can tell, the rooster doesn’t have any favorite hens – whoever’s closest will do, it seems.

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That’s SO cute about Alice’s song – do you sing it to a particular tune?

No, I sing it to different tunes – sometimes peppy like a sitcom theme, sometimes jazzy complete with jazz hands, sometimes slow and mournful. Depends on my mood!

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I swear to the God in whom I don’t believe, my eyes were reading “skip the bug pics” and my brain was saying, “Hmm, if there are bugs, there might also be frogs,” and then – boom! – it’s like you read my mind, IN ADVANCE! What would that be called, prescient telepathy? You’re GOOD, Robyn, you’re really really good.

Elayne, I am sad to inform you that from here on out, you will be forever in my brain as someone who hates frogs and toads. Probably because I don’t know that I’ve ever heard of anyone with that particular phobia before!

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I didn’t know assassin bugs had that cute stage. Have you ever been bitten? I had one in my jacket once and I got bit on the arm.. it felt like a nail going in my arm and then the swelling. My arm got huge and I had to take a bunch of Benedryl. So, be careful where you lay your jacket down!

I have never (yet) been bitten by an assassin bug, which is kind of amazing because they’re everywhere right now. In fact, yesterday I was watering the plants on the front porch, and looked down to see a juvenile assassin bug crawling on the front of my shirt. I leaned over so he could climb onto the hydrangea, and he went along his merry way. I think juvenile assassin bugs are aDORable!

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Just saw this and fondly thought of you and the Fredster:

Never Saw it Coming.

That cracks me UP!

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That pig story had me laughing so hard I am was about to cry. I’m sure it was terrifying then, but looking back, it’s pretty funny now, isn’t it?

OK, maybe not.

It actually is funny to me, now that time has passed. What always makes me giggle is remembering how the bucket clanged against the pig’s head and she grunted (but didn’t react otherwise, as she was in pursuit of food). It makes me laugh every time I think about it!

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Somehow I was relieved to hear about your pissy camera. I have had so many problems with my 2 cats, I’ve never been able to figure out how you can keep so many so successfully. Reading your blog not only gives me some hints, it makes me hopeful. Thank you.

Gallons and gallons of Nose Offense is how I manage! 🙂 The cats seem to go through stages where everything is peaceful and there’s hardly any fighting, and then for some unknown reason, they go through a stage where everyone fights with everyone else, or someone’s got an issue with SOMETHING I can’t figure out, and there’s spraying going on in the house. Earlier this year, when I was about to have surgery, I did some really stupid things. First, I completely changed the kind of litter I was using for the cats, and THEN I took the litter box out of the guest bedroom, and THEN I moved the couch from one side of the front room to the other so I could put a recliner in there, where I sat as I recovered from surgery.

This was the perfect storm that kicked off what I like to UNfondly refer to as “Sprayapalooza.” There I was, recovering from surgery, and every morning after Fred went off to work, I was wandering around the house with the light and the spray bottle of Nose Offense tracking down every puddle and every spray, spraying it, and then wiping it up. It very nearly drove me crazy, but eventually (once I switched the litter back to Fresh Step; I’ve since switched to a Precious Cat/ Cat Attract mixture – and I did it SLOWLY) the spraying stopped. Every now and then we’ll find a spray or two, and I go around the house regularly with the black light to make sure there’s not anything I’ve missed, but at the moment things are going well. THANK GOD.

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I think I just stopped feeling even the tiniest bit sorry for the “intelligent as a three-year-old child” pigs. Holy cow, that’s terrifying. Really glad it didn’t escalate beyond that. Did George and/or Gracie show any interest in the proceedings at all?

You know, I don’t know – I didn’t look over at them, but I also didn’t hear them barking or anything, so I rather suspect they were off keeping an eye on the chickens. They probably figure I can take care of myself!

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I’m curious–there’s only one rooster, so all the babies are his. When the babies grow up, do you keep them? and if so, aren’t they all inbreeding after that?

Before this year, we’ve made sure to bring “fresh blood” into the flock so that there was not any inbreeding. I completely failed to realize that we didn’t do that this year until I saw this comment! I said something to Fred, and he said that he’s planning to add some fresh blood to the flock next Spring, hopefully. I’d like to have a few more Silkies – they’re not terribly prolific layers, but they’re wonderful mothers, and they’re also pretty entertaining. I’d also like to have several Americaunas; although they’re terrible layers (at least the ones we’ve had are), when they do lay, they lay blue eggs, and I like seeing a variety of eggs in the egg basket.

We do keep the hens who are born here, but when they’re big enough, the roosters go off to freezer camp.

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Do you ever find feathers from The Rock Star laying around? I’d want to pluck her-she’s got gorgeous feathers! 🙂

I do find feathers from the Rock Star laying around. In fact, I have a small bag of her feathers around here somewhere that I was going to use for something, I don’t remember what – probably to attach to cat toys.

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Just saw this video today (If you haven’t seen any of these Simon’s Cat videos, click around and watch them all,it’s so worth your time), and it reminded me of Miz Poo, and her paw ‘o doom when she has no use for the little ones!

I LOVE Simon’s Cat – he does such an amazing job on those videos! And yes, that is precisely what Miz Poo is like with the kittens. In fact, just a few minutes before I wrote this, Miz Poo was laying in a cat bed, and Charlie Peppers tried to climb in with her. WELL. She smacked him a couple of times with the Paw o’ Doom, hissed, and then stomped off in a huff.

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Does Fred have help with the umpteen kitties when you decamp?

Fred has zero help with the kitties when I’m not here. He does the scooping, he keeps the food bowls and water bowls filled, and just about everything else goes by the wayside. Our cats didn’t get their morning snack while I was gone, the big Peppers didn’t get a morning snack while I was gone, and Charlie and Patty only got their morning snack because I wanted to be sure they were getting their Forti-Flora every day (though to be honest, at this point I think they’d probably be okay without it, they’re doing really well). He does a good job with all of that, and so if the house is a bit of a mess when I get home, I figure it’s worth it, because I know that he took good care of the cats while I was gone!

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I have composed several songs to my kittehs including the “Good Morning” song and “Coltrane, Coltrane, He’s a Helluva Cat”. Any major labels out there want to sign me up? Hee!

I have to admit that I might pay good money to hear “Coltrane, Coltrane, He’s a Helluva Cat”!

When you say the “Good Morning” song, do you mean this one? Because I sing “Cullen, Tom Cullen, weeee slept the whole night through, Tom Cullen, Tom Cullen, let’s eat!” sometimes (not always in the morning). That works with Miz Poo, too – “Pootie, Miz Pootie, weeeeeee slept the whole night through!”, etc.

Also, I use Alice’s song with Joe Bob, since it fits so well (“Jobey Joe, the tuxedo, sure does love his daddy!”)

Both Kara and Maxi get the same theme song, sung to a tune I made up. Maxi’s goes “Porkin’ along, singin’ her song, it’s Out! Side! Mama!” (because Maxi is an outdoor cat and also because she talks when she’s walking toward us. Also also, she’s kind of portly). We call her “Outside Mama” and Kara is “Upstairs Mama” because she used to spend a lot of time upstairs – these days, if she’s not outside, she prefers to hang out on the cat bed on the clothes dryer. Anyway, her version of it goes “Stompin’ along, singin’ her song, it’s Up! Stairs! Mama!” (She also likes to talk when she’s walking toward you.)

Clearly I can go on for DAYS when it comes to cat songs!

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If I were Alice, I’d growl at you for taking such an unbecoming photo of her (#1). The way she has her body twisted makes her look a little heavy – definitely not her “good side”.

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Much in the way it’s not these jeans that make my butt look fat, it’s not the picture that makes Alice look a little heavy, if you hear what I’m sayin’.

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I hate to ask, but pigs wouldn’t actually try to eat a live animal (incl. human)…would they??

I don’t think they’d have much luck eating a healthy living human, but if you toss someone who’s kind of sickly and weak in there, well, I wouldn’t be surprised if the pigs chowed down, really.

I’ve not seen Deadwood (it’s on my to-watch list), but I understand there’s a pig (or pigs) who takes care of disposing of bodies. I wouldn’t be surprised if that was based on fact. Pigs are walking stomachs, and if they get hungry enough I believe they’d eat just about anything.

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My 15 year old tuxie makes the NONONONO noise whenever she is going to cough up a hairball. She also sounds just like the cat in the America’s Funniest Video clip of a tuxie saying “Oh Long Johson” and “Oh Don Piano”. She looks alot like it too.

I remember seeing that clip!

That clip reminds me of our cat Tubby, who passed away several years ago, and how a couple of times he said, in the creepiest, ghostliest voice EVER, “Mama. Maaaaamaaaa.” It made the hair on the back of my neck stand up, and it always meant that he was about to barf.

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I need good thoughts from the interwebs, by the way – I am getting three foster kittens next week. Unfortunately these three, although seemingly perfectly healthy right now, tested positive for feline leukemia so my house is probably going to be hospice care for them. I am hoping they make it to adulthood but I know the odds are against it.

Teughcats, I hope it’s going well with your foster kittens! I guess that’s a definite positive, there’s no chance they could retest and come up negative? I have been lucky enough to never have any fosters test positive for leukemia, though of course the Bookworms (and the Wonkas before them) were initially FIV positive. Those kittens are lucky to have you to care for them.

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What’s a sweet gum tree? is it anything like a eucalyptus gum tree?

I don’t think it’s like a eucalyptus gum tree, but maybe it’s in the same family and I don’t know! You can read about the Sweetgum tree here. They’re very pretty trees, and if it weren’t for the gumballs (large spiky balls) that they drop by the thousands, I’d love to have more Sweetgums on the property!

And when you put the big garden to bed, do you pull everything out, fertelize it cover it with mulch and just leave it till spring? Hey, I’m new to this gardening thing – might start up my own no dig garden bed this weekend and everthing! erm, how do I keep the cats off it?

We mostly pull everything up, then Fred tills the entire garden a couple of times over the course of the winter, and we call it good enough. I’m planning to toss a lot of leaves and grass clippings on the garden this winter to help amend the soil. We’ll see if I actually do it, though!

We don’t keep the cats out of the big garden – they mostly keep the squirrels, birds, and rabbits away and they don’t bother the plants for the most part. I keep the cats out of my little raised bed garden by putting a fence around it.

Those Peppers are adorable. are you going to re-intro version 2 with the original Peppers again any time soon?

At this point, both litters of Peppers are out in the house for the better part of the day. Fred mentioned, last night, the idea of putting the little ones in the room with the big ones overnight, but I’m a little concerned that Everett (who plays rough sometimes) might get too rough with them. We may eventually do that, depending on how long the big Peppers are with us (not many adoptions lately, so there hasn’t been room at Petsmart for them just yet.)

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I have a one letter editing suggestion for Alice’s song:
Alice Mo
the calico
sure does love
her daddy-O!

I actually had forgotten this – we’ve been watching Breaking Bad, and once the season started, I added a “yo” (a la Jesse Pinkman) to the end of Alice’s theme song!

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Regarding Charlie and Patty Peppers, and their “love bug” status….do you find that your little boy kitties are generally more that way than the girl kitties are? I keep hearing that female animals are generally more independent. You seem to be the best person to really know….given how many cats have been blessed to be with you.

You know, it’s possible that we’ve had more friendly males than females, but if it’s true that the males are friendlier, it’s pretty slight. I’m thinking of the Peppers Gang, where Molly and Lucy are great big lovebugs (we’ve been calling Molly “the hussy” because she climbs on you and demands that you give her love), Sally can take us or leave us, Harlan likes a snuggle if you grab him, but he doesn’t come looking for it, and Everett is a big snugglebug when he’s not off running around like his tail is on fire. So I guess my answer is… maybe the boys are friendlier, but not by a big margin.

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Back to say that I love the word “snoopervise” you should submit that to Websters. 🙂

Isn’t it a great word? I didn’t come up with it, though – I first saw it on Huffle Mawson‘s page, and stole it (I know I’ve seen it other places as well, but that’s where I first spotted it).

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So do the kittehs miss you when you’re gone and act all lovey-dovey, or are they all “what, you were gone?” and ignore you? I never know if I’m coming back to clingy kitties or aloof ones!

Miz Poo always greets me with “OH MY GOD HOW COULD YOU LEAVE ME NEVER EVER LEAVE ME AGAIN!”, and the rest of the cats are all “We’re glad you’re back, is it snack time yet?”

To be fair, that’s Miz Poo’s reaction whether I leave for 10 minutes or 10 days.

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Such stressed Peppers. Sad, no?

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GOD, Everett! Sally! PLEASE try to calm down!

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“What’s up there?”

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“Hey, I like the way this thing smells.”

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Lucy unsheathes The Claws.

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Honestly, Everett. Am I going to have to put you on valium or something? BREATHE, for god’s sake!

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“Now, I have to go back to work on my State of the Union speech. And I worked on it until pretty late last night. But I want to say one thing to the American people. I want you to listen to me. I’m going to say this again:

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“I did not have snuggual relations with that kitten, Mister Peppers. I never told anybody to lie, not a single time; never. These allegations are false. And I need to go back to work for the American people. Thank you.”

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Previously
2010: Myrtle Beach pics!
2009: No entry.
2008: Let Me Out? No, Wait. Let Me In. IN, I MEANT.
2007: No entry.
2006: No entry.
2005: This is the month that makes the hell of summer in Alabama more than worth it.
2004: I need to win the lottery so I can hire someone to come to my house every day and style my hair while I read.
2003: Which is when Stanley thought “Hey! I shouldn’t just skulk back! I should run and leap! Into the air! Like a big mexican jumping Stanley-bean!”
2002: As if he was going to say to himself “By god, she’s RIGHT! I do not, in fact, reside here. What on earth was I thinking?” and run off.
2001: No entry.
2000: No entry.
1999: “Well, she took that well,” I commented.

10/20/11 – Myrtle Beach Thursday!

by @ Thursday, October 20th, 2011. Filed under Crooked Acres, Fostering, Life

From Karen –

I volunteer with a small rescue group near Raleigh, NC named Alley Cats and Angels. We were recently contacted by another group looking for help with a very bad neglect situation. We took in three kittens and three adults, all in very poor shape. They’ve all been to the vet now, and though at first one vet thought at least one of the adults might be too far gone (she feared the foot wound infection had gone into the bones), we are now hopeful that all will be able to make it with proper care. But we could really use some help with the medical expenses for these cats, so have started a chipin campaign.

Our blog will be updated with ongoing status for these guys as they progress. The initial post about them is here.

Once again, the ChipIn for these poor kittens and cats is here. If you can help out, please do. Always remember that every little bit helps!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

 

Vote for Gracie! It’s the last week of voting. Gracie’s currently solidly in first place, and I’d like to keep her that way. After Friday, the three judges get to decide who wins, so it’s not in the bag for Gracie even if she gets a bazillion votes – but it certainly won’t hurt!

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As a side note, I am currently recovering from surgery, so I wrote this entry ahead (wrote it on Tuesday) and scheduled it to post. Who loves ya, baby?

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Sights from around Myrtle Beach (from when I was on vacation last week!)

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I always try on hats when I’m shopping on vacation. I have no idea why.

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Saw this van at Barefoot Landing. I don’t think it runs.

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Huge patch of basil (which I only recognized because of the smell). Isn’t it pretty? It was covered in bees.

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Hibiscus.

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“Do you MIND?”

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WonderWorks.

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On Tuesday we went to Charleston so I could see Kiawah Island (where my parents have spent a couple of winters). We stopped at The Boulevard Diner and I had the BEST shrimp po’ boy EVER.

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(It wasn’t one of the specials.)

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I took a picture of myself in the bathroom because, well, why not?

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Then we stopped to see the Angel Oak Tree, which is believed to be about 1500 years old. It’s HUGE.

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One of those people is me (picture taken by my Dad). Another of those people is my Mom.

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The picture of my Dad taking a picture of me unfortunately came out blurry.

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Boardwalk to the beach.

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Horseshoe crab shells.

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Looks very Morning Glory-ish, no?

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I called my father the “PaParazzi” and then laughed and laughed at my hilarity (the grandkids all call him PaPa.)

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Any idea what kind of bush this is? We saw a lot of them, and I’m curious.

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My favorite kind of shell.

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I love taking pictures of the clouds from the plane window.

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Molly may have a bit of a crush on Spanky.

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Sally the wild thang.

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Everett and his white whiskers.

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“Hmm….”

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“Hmm….”

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Just call her Trouble.

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Tommy, hanging out in the basket in the kitchen.

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Previously
2010: So he bit the camera.
2009: Awww. Da Cookies!
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.

10/19/11 – Kitteh Wednesday

by @ Wednesday, October 19th, 2011. Filed under Fostering, Life

I’m off to surgery in a little while. The surgery will take about three hours, give or take, and I expect I’ll be home by early afternoon, and snoozing in the recliner shortly thereafter! I’ve pre-written entries for tomorrow and Friday, which will post automatically at 6 am. I expect entries to resume again on Monday as normal, but don’t be too surprised if I decide to take a few days off. We’ll see how it goes.

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From Karen –

I volunteer with a small rescue group near Raleigh, NC named Alley Cats and Angels. We were recently contacted by another group looking for help with a very bad neglect situation. We took in three kittens and three adults, all in very poor shape. They’ve all been to the vet now, and though at first one vet thought at least one of the adults might be too far gone (she feared the foot wound infection had gone into the bones), we are now hopeful that all will be able to make it with proper care. But we could really use some help with the medical expenses for these cats, so have started a chipin campaign.

Our blog will be updated with ongoing status for these guys as they progress. The initial post about them is here.

Once again, the ChipIn for these poor kittens and cats is here. If you can help out, please do. Always remember that every little bit helps!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

 

Vote for Gracie! It’s the last week of voting. Gracie’s currently solidly in first place, and I’d like to keep her that way. After Friday, the three judges get to decide who wins, so it’s not in the bag for Gracie even if she gets a bazillion votes – but it certainly won’t hurt!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

 

I got this email from Rachael the other day, and am posting it (along with the picture) with her permission, because I just love the story (and the picture!) so much.

My cat LOVES car rides. He just sits in the back seat and purrs and purrs and purrs. Surprised his little head doesn’t become loose and fall off with all that purring. Usually I just take him for a spin around the neighborhood but Saturday, I took him to Petsmart. He walked on the leash a little bit before he got lazy and laid down. We decided to put a bed in the cart (needed a new one anyway) and put him in there. He was an instant hit. Everybody wanted to pet him and ask questions (mostly what’s his name, how much does he weigh, where did you get him // Scrilla, 19 lbs, shelter cat). He stared at the goldfish and then was stared at by a young orange & white kitty in the adoptions area. When we were checking out, all the cashiers came over to say hello to him and all the little kids swarmed him. HE LOVED IT. They said they don’t get many cats in the store, pretty much 99.9% all dogs.

I’ve enclosed a photo of him loving life in the cart.

Funny – when he was at the shelter (at 6 months old) nobody wanted him because he was missing hair and was really smelly. Now everybody wants him. I used it as an opportunity to tell people that were loving on him to adopt from the local shelters – because he’s such an awesome cat ambassador!!

(And that’s a dog harness on him because none of our kitty ones fit him anymore)

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Is that the cutest thing on earth, or what? I love it!

Rachael reported that Scrilla got a new brush (he chewed his Zoom Groom something fierce cause he’s in love with it), some cat grass, food and a new bed. He’s a happy boy. Too bad both my girls are fraidy!

PS Don’t tell Scrilla he’s a cat… He thinks he’s a dog!

Thanks for sharing, Rachael – and give Scrilla a kiss from me!

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I’m starting to think that Miss Molly has a bit of a crush on little Charlie Peppers.

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It’s hard to tell from the picture, but she was actually rubbing her chin on him.

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And here she is denying it. “Who, me? Rubbing on that little brat? I’d NEVER.”

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Corbie the Gorgeous. Is he the most beautiful cat on earth? I suspect he is.

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Previously
2010: Vacation pics from Myrtle Beach!
2009: That is some godawful NASTY FUCKING HORRENDOUS FUCKING SHIT.
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!
2005: I WILL BE THE VICTOR, DAMNIT!
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.

10/18/11 – Tuesday

by @ Tuesday, October 18th, 2011. Filed under Crooked Acres, Fostering, Life

From Karen –

I volunteer with a small rescue group near Raleigh, NC named Alley Cats and Angels. We were recently contacted by another group looking for help with a very bad neglect situation. We took in three kittens and three adults, all in very poor shape. They’ve all been to the vet now, and though at first one vet thought at least one of the adults might be too far gone (she feared the foot wound infection had gone into the bones), we are now hopeful that all will be able to make it with proper care. But we could really use some help with the medical expenses for these cats, so have started a chipin campaign.

Our blog will be updated with ongoing status for these guys as they progress. The initial post about them is here.

Once again, the ChipIn for these poor kittens and cats is here. If you can help out, please do. Always remember that every little bit helps!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

 

Vote for Gracie! It’s the last week of voting. Gracie’s currently solidly in first place, and I’d like to keep her that way. After Friday, the three judges get to decide who wins, so it’s not in the bag for Gracie even if she gets a bazillion votes – but it certainly won’t hurt!

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I am very sad to report to you that this morning, I am taking Buster to Petsmart. I am hoping and praying that the right people come along and fall in love with and adopt him, the sooner the better. He is a super awesome cat, but this is not the home for him.

From the beginning, when we let him out into general population, he’s been very aggressive toward the other cats, especially Spanky. (Except Jake. Everyone just LOVES Jake, pretty much without exception.) If it were just a slap fight, I wouldn’t be so concerned – but Buster’s been going after Spanky for real, and Spanky is an old guy who really can’t kick butt the way he used to. Buster tried going after Alice, but Alice turned around and said “Really? You want to mess with ME?” and she showed him she’s not scared to stand up for herself. After that, Buster left her alone.

I know that some of you are thinking of any number of things we could try, but honestly we’ve tried everything. I feel terrible taking him to Petsmart, but this is truly not the home for my sweet Buster. He’s a people lover, and I think that if there were only a couple of cats in this house – cats who could stand up for themselves – he’d be okay. But the number of cats in this house stresses him out, and nothing we’ve tried changes that. He needs to be in a home where he isn’t constantly being stressed out and where he can’t ride roughshod over the other cats.

Like I said, Spanky’s an old guy. I think he deserves to live out his last years in peace. I’ve been truly concerned that Buster was going to hurt him, and I can’t let that happen. I’ve been sequestering Buster in the bathroom when I’m not here to be sure he isn’t going after Spanky, and that’s been stressing Buster out, too. It’s time to let him find his true forever home.

I understand if you’re disappointed in us (hey, wasn’t I super-judgy about the woman who gave Buster up? This is what I get! I wonder if this, and not her doctor telling her she shouldn’t be cleaning out litter boxes is the true reason she brought him back to the shelter.), but it’s a final decision on our part. I love Buster an awful lot, but I think that sometimes loving them means knowing when they’re not in a situation where they can be happy. I hope you understand.

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“Am I not beautiful?” You are, Buster. You definitely, definitely are.

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(And then he turned around and went after Corbie. Sigh.)

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Watching the birds out the porthole window.

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Hanging out on the dryer.

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See the light spot in the middle of all the dark? I call that his angel’s kiss.

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(It’s just the angle. His face isn’t quite that big!)

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Bye, sweet Buster. I’m going to miss your goofy face, your drama queen complaints, how excited you get at snack time, your insatiable curiosity (“Hey, what’s up HERE?”) and your loud, loud purr.

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On Saturday, Fred and I left the house for PERHAPS twenty minutes. We drove up into town, dropped off a movie, and came home. In the time when we were gone, some fucking DOUCHEBAG drove his STUPID FUCKING ASS off the road onto our property, hit the utility pole, and then FUCKING LEFT.

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Well, THAT doesn’t look safe.

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At ALL.

Fred called the emergency number to let them know. A while later a utility truck came along, and the guy checked it out. Another utility truck came along a few minutes later, and the guys stood out there and talked it over, and then left. Then… nothing. Yesterday morning, another utility truck parked in the church parking lot, and the guys came over, looked the pole over, stood and talked on their cell phones, and then left.

Still, nothing.

I imagine that before they get around to replacing the pole, it’ll get windy, the whole fucking thing will fall over and THEN IT WILL BE A BIG FUCKING MESS.

You’ll remember – or maybe you won’t, in which case I’m reminding you – that about a year ago (possibly longer) some fucking DOUCHEBAG drove down the road, swerved off into our yard, took out the mailbox and just. kept. GOING. What the fucking fuck is up with fucking assfucks not stopping and fucking, I don’t know, AT LEAST FUCKING APOLOGIZING FOR FUCKING UP OUR PROPERTY?

There was also the guy who swerved off the road, flew across our property, went across the ditch, and finally came to a stop on the church property. Fred saw him very early the next morning, and tried to help him get his truck moved back onto the road, but had no luck. And then there was the guy who drove into the ditch between our property and the church property and had to be towed out.

I am thinking there’s maybe a reason the people who owned this house sold it.

And I know that four (there might have been one more I can’t think of) incidents in five years is not so bad, but mark my words – it’s only a matter of time before some stupid fucking douchebag drives off the road and into our HOUSE. Or into the garage. Because there’s always some douchebag douchin’ along being douchey.

AND PROBABLY TEXTING WHILE HE’S DRIVING.

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The pond guys showed up bright and early yesterday, and except for a half hour lunch, they worked hard all day long!

The first thing they did with the dirt they dug up was to dump some of it in the pig yard. The pigs have rooted up that yard but good, and when Fred mows out there, the mower gets stuck in the ruts. Once the pigs go off to freezer camp (at the end of the month, by the way), Fred will spread the dirt out and even out the yard.

The pigs reacted to those piles of dirt like they were piles of the MOST AWESOME STUFF EVER. They rooted around in the dirt, they ran up on the hills of dirt, and then they rolled around on their backs like dogs.

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George and Gracie snoopervised all day long and thought it was the MOST awesome thing EVER.

I took this picture around noon:

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Fred took this one around 4:30 (I was off taking Tommy to the vet) :

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Fred stood in the trench that is the beginning of the long side (I think. Unless it’s the short side? Hell if I know.)

At the end of day 1, the pond guy guesstimated that the pond is less than 1/3 dug, and that we are going to end up with far, far more dirt than we need. Luckily, he knows a guy who’s building a house and may be interested in taking the extra dirt off our hands.

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Update on Tommy’s eye: Last night I took Tommy to see our other vet for a second opinion (the one I really like the most, but I hate to put the cats through the half hour drive up there). She took a long look at Tommy’s eye, and then said that she thinks it’s iris melanosis – in other words, a “freckle” on his iris. The patch of discoloration is flat rather than being like a growth and isn’t affecting his vision. Also, I brought the pictures of his eye from 2009 and 2010 to show her, and as the spot hasn’t grown much in two years, she doesn’t think that we have to worry about it being melanoma.

Of course we’ll keep an eye on it, and if there are any changes in the spot, she’ll refer us to a specialist. So – for now, at least – Tommy will keep both his pretty eyes.

(But there’s not any reason he couldn’t still go as a pirate for Halloween!)

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Molly totally looks like she’s in a Logitech ad, no? “When MY sister annoys me by sniffing at my back end, I take a deep breath and remember I have a Logitech mouse, and it’s all good.”

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::pbllllt::

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Molly and the Ears of Annoyance.

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“WHAT. What you want, lady?”

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Molly loves loves LOVES to be held on her back like a baby. She was purring up a storm when Fred snapped this picture.

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Patty Peppers, keeping an eye on the goings-on.

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“What’s going on over THERE?”

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She’s the quiet observer, our Patty.

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“WHAT.”

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“Wait. We’re ALLOWED to do that?!”

Um, no. No you’re not, Miz Poo. And neither is he. Not that it stops him any!

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Previously
2010: Back from Myrtle Beach!
2009: No entry.
2008: No entry.
2007: he’ll find them on his hard drive under “Memory Stick, October 18, 2007, Motherfucker.”
2006: I hope I mean that in a good way. I’m not sure yet.
2005: For at least five full seconds a big cartoon question mark appeared above my head and my brain flipped frantically through the instruction manual trying to figure out just what the fuck was going on.
2004: No entry.
2003: No entry.
2002: Poor, deformed Miz Poo.
2001: Ya gotta love the Poo.
2000: Remember that episode?
1999: I just love it when I don’t have to cook.

10/17/11 – Monday

by @ Monday, October 17th, 2011. Filed under Fostering, Life

Vote for Gracie! It’s the last week of voting. Gracie’s currently solidly in first place, and I’d like to keep her that way. After Friday, the three judges get to decide who wins, so it’s not in the bag for Gracie even if she gets a bazillion votes – but it certainly won’t hurt!

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So, I am back from Myrtle Beach! I had a really good time, although the weather didn’t much cooperate. It was warm, but until the last day I was there, it was overcast and rainy and very very windy. The day I left, it was hot and sunny, and if I hadn’t been already packed and ready to go, I would totally have gone for a swim.

We did a lot of shopping – more browsing than buying – and one of the rainy days, we went to see Ides of March, which I thought was really good.

We were definitely not the only ones who came up with the idea of going to the movies that day, either – the theater was pretty packed. I was worried we wouldn’t be able to find decent seats, so as soon as we got our tickets, we went in and got our seats, then my mother and I went out to the snack bar for popcorn and drinks. When we got back, there were people sitting next to us, and they had to stand up so we could go by to get to our seats. As soon as I sat down, the woman sitting next to me stood up, beckoned to her husband, and huffed off.

Well, pardon me for existing, BITCH.

Tuesday, we drove from Myrtle Beach to Charleston so that I could see the area (my parents have spent the better part of the past two winters on Kiawah Island) and BOY is that a gorgeous area.

Since the cats peed on my good camera, I had to take the small camera with me instead. I got some good pictures, but I’m going to save those for Thursday’s entry.

I’m going in for surgery on Wednesday for my neck lift revision. The surgery and recovery will be relatively quick compared to the breast lift/ upper arm lift/ neck lift I had back in February. I can’t scoop litter boxes or lift anything heavy (or turn my head sharply to either side) for two weeks, but after that I should be good to go. I’m tired of these surgeries, and I seriously considered just not having this surgery, but that area really bugs me and the surgery is costing me nothing at all, so I decided to just shut up and do it.

I spent most of the weekend getting the house whipped back into shape and working out in the yard. The leaves are starting to fall from the trees seriously now, and so I raked up a ton of them from the side yard and tossed them in my largest raised bed in hopes that they’ll compost and provide dirt that something might want to grow in next summer. Next time I rake, I’ll put the leaves around the bushes in the front flower beds, and once that’s done I’ll start tossing leaves on the garden before Fred tills it. With all these leaves falling, we might as well use them rather than rake them up and burn them, is what I think.

The most exciting news is that these were dropped off here over the weekend:

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and the guys are supposed to be here this morning to start digging THE POND! They came on Saturday to spray paint the spots where they’ll be digging, and that is going to be one BIG pond. They estimate that it’ll take all week to get the job done.

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Regarding the dark spot in Tommy’s eye, which you can see pretty well in this picture:

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and this one:

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I originally had an appointment for Tommy at the vet’s last Thursday, the day after I got back from Myrtle Beach. But I was fretting about it so much that Fred offered to take him on Monday just to shut me up.

Fred reported that the vet carefully looked at Tommy’s eye and then said that he shares our concern. We’re to keep an eye on his eye (heh) for the next two months. If the spot keeps growing, then Tommy’s eye will need to be removed.

I will, of course, keep y’all informed.

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I weighed all the kittens over the weekend, and was very much NOT surprised that Harlan Peppers weighed in the heaviest at 5 pounds, 13 ounces. Everett was a distant second at 5 pounds, 4 ounces. Sally and Lucy were 4 pounds, 4 ounces (Sally) and 4 pounds 3 ounces (Lucy), and Molly was the lightest big Pepper at 3 pounds 7 ounces.

Those of you who feel bad for Charlie Peppers for being bullied? Don’t feel too bad for him. He stands up for himself quite well, and most of the time Molly puts up with him. He weighed in not much lighter than her, at 3 pounds 2 ounces, and little Patty Peppers was 2 pounds 10 ounces.

This is where Charlie and Patty, when they’ren not running around like wild things, like to hang out:

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Several times a day, they curl up there and nap or watch the other cats run around. Charlie has turned into the biggest lovebug, and will sit at my feet or at Fred’s feet, and howl to be picked up and snuggled. Patty will put up with being snuggled, but she won’t ask for it, and if she’s not in the right mood for snuggling, she’ll run off if you reach for her.

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Charlie in the sun.

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Would you look at Harlan and Molly, resting after their hard work of ripping up that scratching post? Brats.

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The huge Harlan Peppers.

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“What? I’m sleeping. You go ‘way.”

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Yes, I know, I need to tuck the blinds cord up out of the way. I did, after I snapped the picture.

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I love how Sally and Everett’s stripes show up in this picture.

I sent my camera off to be (hopefully) fixed. I am DYING without it; using my little DSC-W300 is just NOT the same!

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Hmm. Appears Jake might have a case of the loonies. How unusual.

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Previously
2010: No entry.
2009: No entry.
2008: Questions and answers.
2007: At one point, Fred and I were on our computers and Nance and Rick were on their laptops in the dining room, and it was like a total dork convention.
2006: And since I’ll be dead long before then from (1) PSC, (2) Weight Loss Surgery (3) Heart Murmur or (4) Throat Chewed Open By Crazy Wild Cats, I’m not going to worry too much about it.
2005: And I like Nicole Kidman and I loathe Sean Penn and didn’t want to see him rubbing his liver lips all over her.
2004: No entry.
2003: Poor Stanley. All he wants to do it play, and none of the big cats will play with him.
2002: That’s a lot of poop to scoop.
2001: “I don’t like it,” he said haughtily. “It’s not even REAL lemon juice. It’s citric acid!”
2000: Now I just have to decide what to spend it on.
1999: When I got to the top of the stairs I found Tubby huddled there soaking wet, and Mr. Fancypants circling him in a hostile manner.

10/14/11 – George & Gracie, Buster & Corbie Friday

by @ Friday, October 14th, 2011. Filed under Fostering, Life

I’m off the grid at the moment – visiting my parents in Myrtle Beach, SC where they have a timeshare. I’ve scheduled entries to post every morning at 6 am (central US time) Monday through Friday, so you won’t have to go without your daily entertainment courtesy of moi. They’re all picture (mostly cat) entries, high on pictures, low on words. Just the way you like it!

I don’t expect to be able to check my email or Facebook or anything, but I’ll probably post to Twitter every now and again, so you can check there. Be good, and if you can’t be good, take notes and tell me all about it when I get back! 🙂

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Vote for Gracie! (Thank you!)

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George and Gracie Friday!

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George is always on the alert for trouble.

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“Hrm?”

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Thank god Gracie’s on the case!

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::thlarp::

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“Nuttin’ over there.”

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“Chickens is safe.”

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::sigh::

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Buster & Corbie Friday!

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Buster has NO dignity.

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None at all.

And clearly it runs in the family.

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They’re such pretty boys.

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This is where Buster likes to hang out during the day.

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Nothin’ Charlie likes more than to bite Patty’s tail.

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Lucy Peppers keeps an eye on her brothers.

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Charlie discovered the side table in the front room.

(I know the posts have been kind of lacking in foster kittens this week. I’ll make it up to you, promise!)

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Alice disapproves of this “kitten” nonsense.

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Previously
2010: No entry.
2009: Terry the Mouth (with a special vocal performance by Hoyt!).
2008: He’s not usually pink, for the record.
2007: No entry.
2006: No entry.
2005: “M-O-O-N!” Fred said. “That spells Tom Cullen!”
2004: No entry.
2003: I’m pretty certain “Never going to fucking go hiking with him EVER A-FUCKING-GAIN” crossed my mind at least once.
2002: Hotel room so big/ roomy, spacious, perfect. Butt/ is what it smells like.
2001: No entry.
2000: No entry.
1999: Don’t get your bippies in an uproar, though; we’re not trying to get pregnant.

10/13/11 – Crooked Acres Thursday

by @ Thursday, October 13th, 2011. Filed under Crooked Acres, Fostering, Life

I’m off the grid at the moment – visiting my parents in Myrtle Beach, SC where they have a timeshare. I’ve scheduled entries to post every morning at 6 am (central US time) Monday through Friday, so you won’t have to go without your daily entertainment courtesy of moi. They’re all picture (mostly cat) entries, high on pictures, low on words. Just the way you like it!

I don’t expect to be able to check my email or Facebook or anything, but I’ll probably post to Twitter every now and again, so you can check there. Be good, and if you can’t be good, take notes and tell me all about it when I get back! 🙂

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Vote for Gracie! (Thank you!)

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Sights from around Crooked Acres.

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Dem pups.

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Ducks. They’ve grown so much since we got them!

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They’re always this close together. I don’t know for sure, but I’m thinking we’ve got four girl duckies, here. (Yay!)

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Mama hen and her babies.

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Someone asked what the daddy of all those babies looks like. This is him, the only grown rooster we have. He’s a big boy, and apparently QUITE fertile.

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Two mamas and a gaggle of babies.

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Snoozin’ pigs.

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::perk::

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::stampede::

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::stampede::

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“You has cookies?”

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Stampeding tires a girl out.

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Silkie. I call her the angry Muppet.

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Ducks like tomatoes too. Go figure.

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Crested Golden Polish (ie, The Rock Star) is the prettiest chicken we have, if you ask me.

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Not quacking yet, but he’s getting there.

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Caught in the act of taking a dust bath. Doesn’t she look guilty?

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Lone duck, separated from the other three.

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The volunteer tomato plant at the edge of the chicken yard. It didn’t get very big (it wasn’t watered very often), but it’s still producing!

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Wee baby chick.

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Harlan has a crush.

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“Hey, mister!”

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“Hi!”

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::smooch::

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::smooch::

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“What was THAT?”

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Previously
2010: Greetings from Myrtle Beach.
2009: “This would be the perfect time to clean out the refrigerator,” Fred said, all perky-like.
2008: Like I was having a temper tantrum, so I grabbed his list and took off so he couldn’t check it twice.
2007: No entry.
2006: I sure do wish I was going to see Callie Torres and not some old guy.
2005: Does this mean I’m getting old?
2004: No entry.
2003: Bringing home Mister Boogers.
2002: No entry.
2001: No entry.
2000: All about the cats.
1999: I certainly am bitching a lot today, aren’t I?

[Bitchypoo is peeing-her-pants excited to be powered by WordPress.]