10/21/11 – Friday

(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 … Continue reading “10/21/11 – Friday”

(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”.

2011-10-11 (20)

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.”

2011-10-21 (4)
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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2011-10-21 (7)
“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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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.