Friday, June 28, 2013

And the rains came...

Not only raining here but hailing too.  The temperature dropped from 82 to 67 in about 45 minutes.

I am trying (at docs direction) different sleep meds, in the hope that I can find one which will let me sleep all night and not leave me like this in the morning:

So far, not so good.

The knitting forum that I follow is pretty big; about 96000 members and about 5500 posts a day.  The topics are arranged in groups, and not limited to knitting /   crocheting.  There is a thread going on now, 39 pages worth, on Paula Deen.  It's split about 50/50 between for and agin'  with most of the "for" group saying they like her recipes and that her racist bigoted remarks should be forgiven since she apologized.  The "against" group say they like her recipes, but that it's her big mouth that landed her in this trouble and if she has any gumption she should own up to her disgrace and disappear.  I myself don't like her recipes or her vocabulary.  Good riddance.

Bumper sticker for the day: "Blessed are the flexible, for they never get bent out of shape."

Friday, June 21, 2013

June J-birds

Here is a photo of a blue jay and a woodpecker on our squirrel feeder.  You can see the woodpecker eating a kernel  of corn.  It seems only fair since the squirrels eat out of the bird feeder.

It will soon be the 4th of July and already the booms and bangs are being heard in the neighborhood.  They send the cats under the beds, but the horses don't seem to notice.  It is a lot easier to soothe an anxious cat than doing the same for a 900 pound horse, so I am not complaining.  But fireworks are pretty expensive, so to put on much of a show you need $$$$.  And it is all over in 10 minutes, I don't see the attraction of firing off a few rockets and flash bangs.

When I was a kid one of the neighborhood kids lost an eye to a firecracker when he put one in a can and then looked at it when it didn't go off, the very thing they teach kids not to do.  And where were the parents?  Inside watching TV would be my guess.

 We went to a nearby mall on the anniversary of their first year in business and watched a phenomenal show by the Zambelli family, all co-ordinated to a musical score that was broadcast over a local radio station.  Incredible show.  Maybe a thousand families there, all OOOhing and AAAhing .  It has been 20+ years now and I still remember.

When we lived in San Francisco, on the fourth of July in 1976, there was this magnificent firework program due to be set off on Alcatraz Island.  Tens of thousands of people, all sitting anywhere there was a sight of the island, we were at the Marina.  About 15 minutes before it was due to start, one of SF's well-known fogs rolled in through the Golden Gate and completely hid the island.  We could all hear the firecracker noise, but couldn't see a thing.  Everybody went OOh and AAh as if they could really see something, an inside joke I guess.  I heard that the tall buildings had a wonderful view of the fireworks above the fog and reflected in it.  Or so we read in the paper the next day.  It was quite a let-down.  Except for all the pot smoke in the air.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "Don't worry what people think.  They don't do it very often."

Friday, June 14, 2013

How to pill a cat.

How to Give a Cat a Pill (followed by How to Give a Dog a Pill)

1. Pick up cat and cradle it in the crook of your left arm, as if holding a baby. Position right forefinger and thumb on either side of cat’s mouth and gently apply pressure to cheeks while holding pill in right hand. As cat opens mouth, pop in the pill. Allow cat to close mouth and swallow.
2. Retrieve pill from floor, and cat from behind sofa. Cradle cat in left arm and repeat process.
3. Retrieve cat from bedroom and throw away soggy pill.
4. Take new pill from foil wrapper. Cradle cat in left arm, holding rear paws tightly with left hand. Force open the jaws and push pill to back of mouth with right forefinger. Hold mouth shut for a count of ten.
5. Retrieve pill from goldfish bowl, and cat from top of wardrobe. Call spouse from garden.
6. Kneel on floor with cat wedged firmly between knees. Hold front and rear paws, ignoring low growls emitted by cat. Get spouse to hold head firmly with one hand, while forcing wooden ruler into mouth. Drop pill down ruler and rub cat’s throat vigorously.
7. Retrieve cat from curtain rail, and get another pill from foil wrapper. Make note to buy new ruler and repair curtains. Carefully sweep shattered figurines and vases from hearth, and set aside for gluing later.
8. Wrap cat in large towel, and get spouse to lie on cat with head just visible from below armpit. Put pill in end of drinking straw, force cat’s mouth open with pencil, and blow down straw.
9. Check label to make sure pill is not harmful to humans. Drink one beer to take away taste of pill. Apply Band-Aid to spouse’s forearm and remove blood from carpet with cold water and soap.
10. Retrieve cat from neighbour’s shed. Get another pill. Open another beer. Place cat in cupboard and close door onto neck to leave head showing. Force mouth open with dessert spoon. Flick pill down throat with elastic band.
11. Fetch screwdriver from garage, and replace cupboard door on hinges. Drink beer. Fetch bottle of Scotch. Pour shot and drink. Apply cold compress to cheek and check medical records for date of last tetanus shot. Apply whiskey compress to cheek to disinfect. Toss back another shot. Throw away tee-shirt and fetch another one from bedroom.
12. Call fire department to retrieve ****ing cat from tree across the road. Apologize to neighbour who crashed into fence while swerving to avoid cat. Take last pill from foil wrapper.
13. Tie the little sod’s front paws with garden twine and bind tightly to leg of dining table. Fetch heavy duty pruning gloves from shed. Push pill into mouth, followed by large piece of fillet steak. Be rough about it. Hold head vertically and pour two pints of water down throat to wash down pill.
14. Consume remainder of Scotch. Get spouse to drive you to the emergency room. Sit quietly while doctor stitches fingers and forearm, and removes pill remnants from right eye. Call in at furniture shop on the way home, to order new dining table.
15. Place “Free Mutant Cat from Hell” ad in local newspaper and ring local pet shop to see if they have any bunnies.

How to Give a Dog a Pill
1. Wrap it in bacon.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013


This is my daughter putting flowers on the graves of our family for Memorial Day/ 4th of July.  Mom, Dad and Aunt were all in the military in WWII.  Nearly all of the graves here are always decorated, and the upkeep is pretty good, especially considering how much trimming  there is around the headstones.  My grandparents are buried here as well.

I have been busy knitting and hope to have this project done today or tomorrow.  I wish I had a better chair while I knit on the machine, but frankly I don't think there would be room!  I keep a squirt bottle at hand to discourage the cats from playing with the dangly bits; if they managed to pull it off the needles I would flip.  I couldn't even guess at how many hours I have spent so far, especially since I had to start over three times.

When I was a kid I tried to learn how to crochet from my grandmother and mother.  But anything I attempted was doomed; each row was crocheted tighter and tighter so overall the piece would look like an "A".  It was hard to keep a consistent tension on the yarn.  No one in the family knew how to knit, because Grandma had lost three fingers of her left hand in an accident as a child and therefore couldn't knit, or teach knitting.  I can hand knit (badly) but I enjoy the knitting machine a lot, it goes so fast (once you get going), where hand knitting is like watching paint dry.  Of course there are my other hobbies, like candle making, macrame, writing, ceramics, pottery, sewing, quilting, and on and on.  I'm nothing if not eclectic.

I'm pretty good at napping too.

On a forum that I read, I posted a topic asking what the bravest thing you ever did, and I have gotten some amazing replies.  The most touching one came from a woman who survived a chemical plant explosion in 1953 when her house collapsed, with herself and two tiny children inside, and then caught fire.  None of them were seriously injured, despite all odds, but 4 people died and 75 were injured.  The plant was making fireworks.  Illegally. In Texas.

Some of the other stories involved jumping out of an airplane, rescuing kids, braving bikers, leaving abusive situations, traveling alone to far places, boldly facing down shyness or fears and on and on. I have been impressed. So much goes on in our lives that no one else would ever guess.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "This vehicle protected by anti-theft sticker"