Friday, September 24, 2010

What do you do with an unhappy cat?

We have this cat.... we've had him since he was a kitten, and he's 3 years old. He is a housecat, as I thought that was the thing you are supposed to do. Right?? In reality, I prefer indoor/outdoor cats - I mean, I think a cat should be a cat... but on the other hand, I don't want one to get flattened in the road or something.

So here is the problem. He is desperate to be outside. He's been like that his whole life, altho in the beginning he was content to just go out on the patio and lie in the sun while we were out with him. Then one day he sprinted across the lawn, climbed the fence and started across the green space in our neighborhood. We ran outside and scooped him up fast. After that, we didn't let him out anymore, but he's tried to get out whenever he can. When we moved from there to the apartment, we thought we were safe - we had a 2nd floor balcony so we'd let him out there and for awhile, he was content. Then one day, after we'd lived there nearly a year, he bailed - seriously - he jumped off the balcony and we didn't find him 'til 8 hours later!! Even then, he didn't seem to be on his way home... he was on someone else's ground-floor patio, just snooping around. After that, we didn't let him out on the balcony anymore. I had to block the doorway with my purse whenever coming home, because he'd try to shoot out the door and down the stairs.

Well, now we've moved again, and we are staying for awhile at my parent's house. I thought (wrongly, it seems) that he'd be happy since their house is waaay bigger than our apartment, with lots of new places to check out. Nope. He seems even more desperate than ever to get outside. He has gotten out accidentally a couple times (too many people and too many doors here) and he doesn't just wander out to check it out - no, he streaks across the lawn, heading across the street or into a neighbor's yard!!

We are trying really, really hard to make sure he doesn't make it outside. I'm pretty sure he has no clue how to survive out there, with cars and dogs and such. But, he's so miserable! He yowls at the door, he yowls out the window at night while we try to sleep..... he's pretty annoying, too.

Any ideas on how we can keep him happy and safe inside?

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Is this what retirement will look like?? (please say no!)

My husband needs a job. Really, really needs a job. Oh, I mean sure, we need money so we can pay our bills and all that, but I'm not even talking about that yet. What I mean is that without anyone for him to boss around, he's beginning to (try to) boss me and Kiki. And it's starting to get on my nerves.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Water in, "water" out

You may or may not know that I need to lose weight. As in, a whole lot of weight. As in, I'm twice the woman I should be.

I joined Weight Watchers a few months back, and I've lost just over 20 pounds. If I was being awesome and losing 2 lbs a week I'd have lost twice that... but hey, I'm losing, not gaining! Not even staying the same... so I figure I'm going the right direction, anyhow.

This week hasn't been the best ever, so I'm a little freaked out about weigh-in. So today I remembered "drinking water is good" so I've been chuggin' it.

I've peed 12 times this morning and it isn't even 10:30.

I remember why I quit drinking water.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

It's Raining, it's not pouring

It feels completely fall-like today. Which is good. Fall is my favourite season. Oh, look, I spelled that like I'm British or something. Everyone here is annoyed because they really didn't have a summer. I guess there were only a few hot days this year. But, having myself just moved from Virginia where it was disgustingly hot and humid, I am as happy as can be!

Next door, the neighbor's cat is asleep on their roof. In the rain. Which seems pretty strange to me. At least it is only drizzling.

Well, we haven't finished our lessons today, so back to school I must go.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

"Go Big Blue"!!

So I said I would blog every day.... here it is, as promised -

B S U!! B S U!! B S U!! Gooooo Broncos!!

That's what is on my mind today ;-)

Monday, September 6, 2010

Overcoming lameness (and no, I don't mean I have a limp)

So I've been a total slacker on this whole blog thing. Which needs to end, eh? So I'm revamping what I'll write about, hope I can continue to sneak onto my daughter's laptop (a stinkin' middleschooler has a laptop and I don't?? Yeah, grandma loves her more...) and I don't know, see if I can collect a thought or two each day.

Today's thought: School starts tomorrow. For most moms, that's probably cause for celebration - but when you're a homeschooler, it means my work begins. I am sooo not ready. Too bad for me, huh? 7th grade.... wow. They grow up so fast. Since we just moved back across the country (Virginia to Idaho.... again) two weeks ago, I'm not really organized for school yet. And don't have the space here to really be. But I can work with it. We were asked to re-join the school board! Nice to be loved. ;-)

Monday, July 12, 2010

Going to the Beach!!

This Friday morning (really early!) we are going to head over to the coast - my first view of the Atlantic Ocean! I am sooo excited! Growing up out West, I have been to the Pacific Ocean a bajillion times (at least!) but this will be my first time to the Atlantic. I think it will be weird to see the sun rise over the ocean, instead of setting into it!

We are going to spend one day and night on Chincoteague - unfortunately, we couldn't make it for Pony Penning - but, just to be there will be a thrill for this girl who grew up loving horses and reading the "Misty of Chincoteague" stories! If only I could bring home a pony as a souvenir! Then we will head to Virginia Beach to do the touristy thing.... Kiwi has only been to the Oregon Coast, which is absolutely beautiful, but generally pretty cold - so, she's never actually swum in the ocean. I am really excited for her to get to play in the waves and lay out on the beach in the blazing sun like I did growing up in Southern California.

The weather forecast calls for a 30% chance of rain, but that doesn't mean we won't still get plenty of sunshine and heat... I am really looking forward to the trip!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

My dog rocks! (and so do I)

Friday I had to take Merry dog to the vet for some vaccinations. This was our first time seeing a vet here in Virginia. About a year and a half ago, Merry dog had to have knee surgery for a torn CCL (like an ACL in a human). At that time, the vet told us she needed to lose some serious weight in order to protect both the repaired knee and the other knee... I suppose for other health issues as well. So, we have really cut back on how much we feed her. Now, she is a Lab - those dogs loooove their food, and she is certainly no exception! She has gone from about 115 lbs to 73. I was actually concerned that maybe she is a little too thin, so I asked the vet about it. She said to me "Oh, gosh, your dog could be the poster child for "Perfect Weight for a Large Breed Dog". Hahaha!!! If only someone thought I was the perfect weight!! I have a lot more poundage to lose before I am as beautiful as the dog, lol. But, I too, am on my way to slender.


Looks like I need to take a more current picture....

Monday, June 21, 2010

Moving, Again

Well, here we go - again. Yep, we are moving. That part gives me a sheer panic attack. I don't like moving. Let me rephrase that - I despise moving. I've done it waaay too many times for someone not in the military! And of course, the longer we've been alive the more stuff we've accumulated, so it just gets harder and harder. I see these cute little UHaul trucks come in and out of the apartment complex, and Scooter and are are like, "hey, remember when all our stuff could go in a tiny little truck like that?" Sheesh. No longer.

The good news is that we are moving back to Idaho! Yeah. Guess the East just isn't for us. The West is - in my blood I suppose. I'm not sorry we came... I mean, I don't regret the year here. We've gotten to see and do some stuff I probably would never have done if I'd always lived in the West. It's been hard, don't get me wrong. We've been poorer than we've ever been, Kiwi has been miserable without her friends back home... oh, she's made a few connections, but it's been way harder than we thought it would. But, there will be some good memories of our time here.

I guess the best part of this move is that we realized something. You see, of all the places we've lived, Idaho isn't really our "all time favorite". There's not a lot to do there; the weather can be less than ideal; it's sort of in the middle of nowhere.... and yet, we've realized it's where we want most to be, because the people we know and love the most are there. I wonder why we are so thick-headed we had to move cross-country to figure that one out.... Okay, we did need a job - but, we are going back without one. Yeah, it's sort of scary. But we have a job here, and still can't make ends meet, so what-ev, I guess.

I've been trying to sell a bunch of stuff on crai**list that we don't need, but that's going slower than I'd hoped. Get a lot of 'scam' emails, but not as many actual buyers.... what we really need to to have a yard/garage sale - but I don't know how you'd do this when you have no yard (or garage), so that's probably not going to happen. Urgh. Apartments. Except for the pool; I am loving that right now!!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Wow, where have I been?

Sorry - I've been totally AWOL. Gonna try to remedy that. Not sure what direction to take this blog - like, should I make it about something? Dunno.

Lots going on in my life right now, I will be back to post more later, but just wanted to pop on to let folks know that I'm not dead.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Uhm.... not much to say

Just another day. At least it's not snowing!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Making Snow Ice Cream

Growing up in Southern California, this wasn't something we ever did! My grandma was also a Californian, so I don't have childhood memories of making this at her house, either. (I do have great memories of making 'Shake-A-Pudding' at her house though... anyone else remember that stuff??) But I digress.....

Since we had 4 feet of snow, I figured we ought to do something fun with it. Well, besides sledding and hucking snowballs at each other, which we certainly did plenty of! Somewhere, on someone else's blog - and I don't remember who, or I'd give you credit! - I saw 'snow ice cream' and since I adore homemade ice cream, I figured this was for me!

I found more than one recipe for it, but since I also adore sweetened condensed milk I decided to go with that one. It was incredibly sweet and rich, and no one could finish their bowl of it. Well, except me, because I could probably eat a whole can of sweetened condensed milk just plain. Gross, I know. But still.

So here it is - I sent Kiwi out with a big metal pan that I had stuck in the freezer to get good and cold. She got 10 cups of clean, fresh snow.

Then we added one 14 oz. can of sweetened condensed milk and a couple teaspoons of vanilla.

As you stir it together, the snow really condenses down... it looks kinda... chunky... but it's not. It was nice and creamy. I wonder if it's different with different types of snow? Ours was a very light, fluffy, dry sort of snow.

Then we dished it up and ... yummmm! I have to admit, this was more like 4 - 6 servings, not three.....

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Snowmaggeddon?? Lol

Yeah, that is actually what they are calling it around here. Which I find hilarious... I mean, yeah, it's a whole lot of snow in one storm, a lot in an area that isn't used to it, I guess... but sheesh! This would be a typical winter in so many places that it seems silly that folks are freaking out about it. As one woman said when she was interviewed "It's just snow - it's not like it's attacking us." I suppose for us, living in an apartment, it's not such a big deal since I haven't got sheds to worry about caving in, or animals that need to get out of the weather, or a long drive to shovel out or whatever... but, still.

Yet, I suppose you know it is pretty bad when the snowplow gets stuck... he's trying to dig it out here...

Here is a pic of Merry dog enjoying the freedom of a snowed-in parking lot. (the lumps on either side are cars)

Here's my family enjoying the snowfall - the big pile just to their right is our car!

Checking out the sledding hill.... we made dad do it first!

The path after it'd been plowed

Tennis, anyone?!

We thought this one looked like a hippo face! Can you see it?

Hmmm, bummer....

Look how beautiful it was the next day!! Gorgeous! Makes a person happy to be alive.

Hope the weather where you live is pretty too!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Yep, we're getting some snow!!

I think they might be right... we have at least 8" and the biggest part of the storm is supposedly yet to come. I blame me - I was bummed that we were in Idaho for Christmas when the last big snowstorm hit, so I guess this was all for me, lol.

Took the dog out for her "final" nighttime walk a little early tonight, and it was nearly to my knees in places... tomorrow should be interesting if this keeps up.

I've been giggling at cars who can't make it up the little hill to the apt. complex (cause I'm mean that way) Alan on the other hand went and helped one guy make it in... he's a better man than me, I guess!

I'll post some pics tomorrow....

Amazingly Accurate Weather Forecast

Living for many years in Idaho, where the weather seems to be anyone's guess, I am used to taking the forecasts with a grain of salt. Something about the wind and the mountains (they claim) can cause the fronts to shift, so we never really know what we'll get.

So here I am in Northern Virginia, (just outside of Washington DC) where they have been predicting the biggest snowstorm in - well, I don't know, a long time, and I'm thinking "yeah, whatever". They said the snow would start falling today mid-morning, around 10:00 am. At 9:55 I got in my car to take my daughter to her literature group, and the first flakes had just begun to fall...!! That is some seriously accurate forecasting - these folks are good!

Now, as to whether or not we will get the predicted 1 - 2 feet of snow remains to be seen. It is coming down pretty thick right now... I'll keep you updated!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

An interesting day...?!

First we had this......

Which was caused by this....

Kinda like TV for pets, eh?

Monday, February 1, 2010

Huh! Who knew?? A post about "ice melt"

So, the other day it snowed again. Which is weird, because it's been in the 50's and really lovely weather... been feeling like Spring. The snow from the Christmastime Blizzard was almost gone - and then it does it again. Well, not blizzards, but snows, about 6 inches or so.

So we are taking the dog for a walk when she starts limping. I look at her paw and don't see anything, put it down, she is still limping. Then I notice it seems to be both front feet - no, all of her feet... what the....?? She is walking as tho she is trying to walk on the sides of her paws, they are all curled in and...well, weird. My mind is racing, trying to think what could possibly be wrong, when Scooter says "hey, walk her on the snow". So I do, and then she's fine. He'd realized that the ice melt stuff that the apt. complex had put down on the sidewalk was burning her paw pads!! Poor girlie! It's true, the moment we were off that part of the sidewalk, she was fine. Thank goodness, it didn't do any damage, just hurt at the time. I would never have thought of that - I mean, when there is a need for ice melt on the ground, I'm generally not walking barefoot, y' know? So who'da thunk it?

Now you know.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

stuff that makes you go hmmm....

So, I don't know why I find this so funny, but.... the big initials on the sides of the garbage trucks here - which, you know, must be the initials of the company....



it is indeed a crime what I throw away.....

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

West vs. East ~ Weirdness ~ What's a Yellow Lab??

So here is something I have noticed since living here: East coast people don't know what a Yellow Lab is.... apparently. At least they aren't familiar enough with them to recognize one without it's tail. See, our dog hasn't got a tail - just a silly little nubbin that makes her do what we call "Wiggle Booty". She had a tail once... and she was a voracious wagger! When she got happy - which was mostly always - she would wag from the ribcage back. The problem was her Yellow Lab/Golden Retriever mixing... most of her tail was thick-and-heavy lab tail, but the final inch or two was fine-boned Golden tail.... so when she wagged like that, she'd break the end of her tail open on the door frame or whatever - then the continued wagging would, well, make a pretty gross mess of blood splatter on the walls as she wiggled around. We tried for nearly a year to beat this, with splinting and wrapping and whatever we could think of. Finally, our vet just said our best bet was to amputate her tail. To be honest, I haven't missed that thing, or the constant bruising on my thighs that she gave me with it.

Now, in Idaho, (where Labs are about the #1 or #2 popular breed) when I'd be out with my dog, people would just ask me "Why did you dock your Lab's tail?" I mean, they recognized what she was - a tailess Lab. They may have found it strange, but not, like, frightening.

Here in Virginia, when I'm out walking my dog, people will look at her with obvious fear, and - sometimes - ask me "What kind of dog is that?" What is that about?? I think - and I'm guessing sort of - but I think that they assume she's some sort of pitbull mix, since that is probably a more "popular" breed around this area, and I guess only mean and aggressive dogs have docked tails....?! I mean, seriously, look at this dog's face and tell me how scary she looks, lol! But I can't tell you how often I get the frightened look, or if I have her off-leash and someone sees her, the "OHMYGO_!!" exclamation as though they expect her to be eating their face within seconds. I find it really irritating. 'Cuz she's about the sweetest dog on the planet.

(the blue in the pic above is me - you can kinda see my hands in my hoodie pocket - she's fully laying on top of me!)

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Sick men....ugh

Finally convinced my dh he needs to see a doctor. He's only been sick - I mean, really sick - for over a week now! Seriously, I couldn't sleep last night, listening to his labored breathing. He's probably got pneumonia or something! Sheesh.

Monday, January 4, 2010


So, now I am sick. Which is just boring, and stupid. I had things to do today... not the least of which was starting to put away the Christmas paraphanelia. I mean, I love it, I do... but I also love the clean-ness and space you find when you put it all away. Sometimes I like to leave it up until the 6th (Epiphany) but this year I was just ready to clean up. Well, mentally ready. Obviously, not physically ready. Hubby is still sick. Of course he refuses to go see a doctor. 'Cause he's a guy. Argh. Men are dumb sometimes. Lots of times. But, I digress.... I don't want to be sick. It's boring. Poor Kiwi is really bored, what with having both parents sick.... ahh, poor kiddo!

Well, someone still has to take the dog out to potty.... crud. That'd be me.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

...and so it begins....

2010 is not beginning in a very good way at my place. Everyone (but me) is still sick. Urgh. Which means sleeping late, laying around, and watching waaaay too much tv. Which to me is kinda like... Hell. Seriously. I am a "need to get OUT" kind of person, and this is driving me crazy. So, I may have to bail on these people pretty soon! I can't believe my husband had 3 1/2 days off work and we got to do... absolutely nothing. I despise that!!

At least I have to walk the dog - that's something. It's OUT. She is loving the snow - she stops to eat big, crunchy mouthfuls of it - like it's a snowcone or something! Silly girl. The cat is trying to scratch his way thru the glass panes in the office door so he can go out, which he would change his mind about if he knew how cold and windy it is out there... think, "blustery".... in fact, I should probably go pick the swim noodles off the balcony so they don't blow away. Yeah, the pool toys are still out there.... in the snow.... so sue me. Lol. It's called "no storage in this crazy apartment".

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year!!

Wow...2010. When you're "old" like me, that just sounds weird. Almost science-fictiony, huh? Lol.

I watched the Rose Parade this morning... it starts so much later when you live on the East coast! The Parade is such a tradition for me... I grew up in Southern California, and my grandparents lived right there in Pasadena (in fact, my parents actually met while attending Pasadena City College! hehe) Every year we would walk over to Colorado Blvd. and watch the parade... sometimes dad and grandpa would bring a ladder so us kids could sit up there and see over the crowd (which wasn't quite so big in those days!) When I was a teen, I belonged to the "Petal Pushers", which was a group sponsored by the Lutheran Church ( The Lutheran Hour has had a float in the parade for years). We'd get farmed out to all sorts of groups, whoever needed help decorating their float. I've glued hundreds (probably thousands!) of flowers and seeds and stuff to floats in the past! Fabulous fun!! In "lucky" years, if our particular youth group got to work on the 31st, we'd spend the night in some church gym and go to the parade in the morning. A couple other years, I and some similarly crazy friends spent the night right on the sidewalk, staking our claim for a good viewing position the next morning. And yeah, even in sunny Southern California, it gets pretty dang cold overnight when you are in just a sleeping bag!! Once I remember waking up to feeling kinda squished in my sleeping bag - and some people were sitting on me! Absolute strangers! Didn't want to get dirty by sitting on the sidewalk I guess... I think that was the same year I foiled a purse-snatcher.... Good times, good times!

The downside, of course, is that every year it looks so absolutely beautiful there in SoCal, sunny and warm, and all those folks freezing in the gray and snowy midwest would pack up and move there.... it got so crowded my family had to move to Idaho!! Where it's gray and snowy.... huh....