Four(th) Musings

This is my current pedicure. I’d been thinking about getting something American flag-esque for years, and while this isn’t exactly what I had in mind, the intention is clear.  (This is the first time I’ve had nail art done, and it’s a bit distracting.  I’ll probably never do it again.)

This is a red, white, and blue seperator.

Q:  Do they have a 4th of July in Great Britain?
A:  Yes they do.  They also have a 5th and a 6th and a….

My dad told that joke way back in… well, Mom was still alive, so it was over a quarter of a century ago.  😮

This is a red, white, and blue seperator.

I think I’m finally ready to see How to Train Your Dragon 2.  Apparently I’ve missed the IMAX version, but it’s still being shown in 3-D.  I’m sure it will still be a beautiful experience.  I’ll need to remember to restock my portable tissue supply.  I’ll probably be a mess when it’s over.

This is a red, white, and blue seperator.

On a related note, the Arlington animal shelter had a trio of two-month-old kittens for adoption named Astrid, Hiccup & Toothless.  Toothless was an all black male, Hiccup was a black-and-white female, and Astrid was a cream-colored cutie.  Astrid was spoken for when I visited, and Hiccup & Toothless were adopted shortly thereafter (hopefully together).  Then Astrid returned.  As of now, she’s still shown as being available.  I will likely visit the shelter tomorrow.  Encouraged by Suzanne’s success with Fizzie and Tig, I may have to bring her home.

 

Two Too Many

Last year my neighbor lost her two dogs within three months of each other.  I know how difficult the loss of a pet is, I could not imagine the loss of two.  Now I know.

Kimmi, my longish-haired calico died yesterday.  The most difficult part for me is that I didn’t get to say goodbye.  She died at the vet’s while being prepped for surgery.  She was 13 years old, and her death comes on the heels of Gigi’s death just before Christmas.

Kimmi wasn’t particularly affectionate, but then calicos and long-hairs generally aren’t.  Most of the time, she’d spend the day sleeping on my bed.  Our “special time” occurred when I’d come to bed and read before going to sleep.  The initial moments were spent with me rubbing her neck and head.  (When I’d momentarily stop, she’d paw at my hand to continue.)  Then she’d curl up on my lap for awhile.  (She didn’t spend the night with me because my male cat usurped the bed.  But Kimmi had her own plush and cozy bed in a corner of the bedroom which she regularly used.)

Continue reading “Two Too Many”

In Memorium

My beloved Gigi, the world’s sweetest cat, died this week.  Already quite old when I started my last, very stressful job, I told her she couldn’t die before I retired—I knew I’d need her love and comfort to help through the difficult time.  Bless her heart, she obliged.

Almost two years ago, she was diagnosed with hyperthyroidism, and we discovered her kidneys had started to fail.  Neither condition is unusual for an elderly cat, and she was close to 19 years old.  I chose to give her hyperthyroid medicine twice a day rather than the very expensive and permanent radiation treatment.  (For some reason, surgery wasn’t an option.  Maybe because of her age.)  While she didn’t like taking ½ pill twice a day, she didn’t struggle much; and she responded extremely well to the treatment.  However, after several months she learned the routine and would run from me when she heard the pill slicer.  I stopped for a few days, then started up again, but wasn’t terribly consistent.

Around or after Thanksgiving, she began to show signs of going downhill.  Always a thin cat, she’d lost so much weight her hipbones protruded from her back.  Although I knew “the time” was coming, I hoped she’d hold on until after Christmas.  But late last week she really began to fail.  I think her kidneys stopped working.  Her eyes were terribly runny, and she would only lay on her stomach.  On Saturday, I called the vet to see if he could euthanize her, but was told they were booked up. I made an appointment for Monday, but by Saturday evening I could tell she wasn’t going to make it.

She had a rough night that night.  She slept in my closet and barely moved all night.  In the morning I called the emergency vet clinic to see if I could bring her in.  My friend drove us to the clinic while I carried her in one of her favorite blankets.  The event stressed her out quite a bit, and she died just as we arrived at the clinic.

It’s the first time I’ve waited so long to euthanize a pet.  In the past, I’ve wondered if I acted too early.  Now I’m wondering if I should have done it sooner.  I guess when we love someone, it’s never a good time to make that decision.

I still have two cats, but they’re not as loving as Gigi.  I know in time the hole in my heart will mend.  But for now, I’ll just have to “muddle through somehow.”

Sunday Seven: Around the Neighborhood

Picture #2 is so pretty I had to feature it.

On Columbus Day, I took my new camera on a stroll around the neighborhood.  It was the first sunny day in about a week.  Here’s what we (my camera and I) found.  (Picture #2 is above.)

  1. A potted plant (it’s a hibiscus, I think) in our pool area.  We filled in the kiddie pool years ago because it was too expensive to repair.
  2. The hibiscus bloom, taken from the same spot as #1, but with the zoom.  The photo is unretouched, except for size.  It turned out so lovely, it’s featured at the top of the post.
  3. A dry cleaner that delivers!  I took the photo to remember the name and contact info, since I’m always forgetting to take stuff to the dry cleaner’s.
  4. Lulu!  Is she not adorable?  She’s part Yorkie, part chihuahua. She looks it, doesn’t she?  (I also met Pepper, a shih tzu, and her owner, a Coast Guard officer who had the day off; but was too embarassed to ask if I could take Pepper’s picture.)
  5. The Leaning Tower of Alexandria, er, the George Washington Masonic Temple.  The fence between our property and theirs was recently reopened.  There had been a pass-through when I first moved in, but they closed it up years ago.  On my walk, I met a man coming out of the bushes, and voila!, learned the fence had been opened once again.  Yay!
  6. The Masonic Temple, full optical zoom.  Still tilted.  It’s claim to fame is an elevator that runs diagonally.
  7. And once again, this time using the “intelligent” (i.e., digital) zoom.  It too was tilted, but I straightened it (a little) with my graphics software. (Although I have Photoshop, I prefer Paint Shop Pro.  Simpler software for simpler minds.)

Playtime for a Rainy Day

The day before yesterday, after I visited PetSmart, I went next door to Best Buy.  Not because I wanted anything, but I hadn’t been in there in a while.  The season 8 Supernatural DVD set was there, but I’ve already ordered it from Amazon (way cheaper), so that wasn’t on the list.

Instead, I gravitated towards the cameras.  I decided I needed a small camera to photograph my cooking adventures.  These two Nikons caught my eye as both have a Wi-fi capability and were on sale.

I fell in love with the white one because 1) it’s white, 2) it’s new,  3) it’s different, and 4) it’s mega-cool.

Continue reading “Playtime for a Rainy Day”

A New Morning Routine

One of the problems of people with messy homes is we get overwhelmed.  Where do we start?  What should we work on?  That’s one reason FlyLady is so helpful.  She tells you where to start.  (It’s the kitchen sink.)

For the past several weeks I’ve been very sluggish in body and complacent in mind.  It’s a vicious cycle.  Physical clutter leads to mental clutter.

Once in awhile I’ll get motivated in the kitchen to load and run the dishwasher.   But I tend not to empty it right away.  Dishes pile up in the sink, spill over onto the counters.

Gigi is a buff colored tabby cat.
The world’s sweetest cat, but messiest eater

Combine that with an elderly, hyper-thyroid cat who’s a messy eater.  The vet said “Give her anything she wants to eat.”  She’s always hungry, but routinely turns up her nose at whatever I give her.  Exceptionally frustrating is the fact that she sometimes refuses food she’s liked in the past.  I end up with two or three opened cans, several bowls of unfinished food, and a very messy eating area.  (The picture was taken a few years ago, but she’s now 19 years old—that’s 93 in people years.)

I finally had enough!  I spent today cleaning the kitchen.  I emptied the dishwasher, filled it up and ran it again (and emptied it shortly thereafter), washed the pots and pans by hand, cleaned the counters and floor, and finished the day by cleaning out the kitty water fountain. There’s still clutter to clear out, but that wasn’t on today’s agenda.

In looking over the not quite spotless kitchen (FlyLady says housework done imperfectly still blesses me), I wondered how to keep the kitchen manageable so I can focus on other areas of the house.  I had a moment of clarity, stimulated, I’m sure, by the orderly kitchen—a new morning routine.  Every morning I shall empty the dishwasher (if it’s been run, since I don’t need to run it every day); fill the pets’ dry food bowls, and give them fresh water.  I know it sounds minimal, but when you’ve been doing nothing for weeks, minimal is an improvement.