Tuesday, June 30, 2009

We were blessed with a bit of wonderful rain last night. We didn't even get a tenth of an inch here, but it was moisture, and it broke the heat a bit. I know we can easily expect temperatures in the 90's in June, but they gave a breakdown last night on the news. We have not had a high below 90 for the entire month. Seven days were above 100, and there were something like 10 days in the high 90's. Whew. It has been blistering. Some relief for the next couple of days, but back into the 100's for the weekend.

Lady Bug sewed her pj bottoms yesterday. Her seams look like the way a drunken sailor would walk. But she did them. If I hadn't moved my big safety pin, they would have been finished. Without the pin, I couldn't run the elastic. In an executive decision, I sewed the 3/8 inch seam for the hem. She tried, but because she doesn't run the seam from one end to another, it was difficult.

She hates to be wrong. Every time I told her the seam was wrong, she would get upset. Everything comes so easily for her when it is difficult, she doesn't like it. That was the way learning to play the piano went. She has a good ear for it, and that's how she wanted to play. She would get me to play the little piece, then she would mimic it - not reading and learning the notes on paper.

In a whole other vein, this morning when I was at The Biomes Blog, Mark had a link here:the cab ride. I don't know if it is another urban legend because I think I have heard it before, but it certainly gave me food for thought.

Shadow is in the vet hospital this morning. He is being preped for surgery as I write. He will get to stay overnight, on pain meds. He is losing his manhood this morning as well as his front claws. I know it is a terrible surgery, but for our skin, Simones' eyes, and my furniture, it is for the best. He will never run wild outside again. It is for his good too. Besides, a month ago, his future was bleak. He was facing a death of starvation. Even the vet didn't try to talk me out of it!

Peace. (I don't know what's up with Blogger this morning. They are funky about the font - this isn't my doing ig it comes out weird!)

Monday, June 29, 2009

One note song

It seems like the only thing I can focus on is the heat. I know I live in Texas. I know we have heat. But not like this, and certainly not this early. It just keeps going on.

The weather gurus say we have a 30% chance of rain today. I think they are correct. My knees are screaming. I really hope so - it will help with the temperature. Of course, then the humidity will be high, but we do need rain so badly.

I had to joke with Daughter this weekend. When I went to the farmer's market on Friday, they were advertising a craft show yesterday. The spaces were free. Now that's something that normally would have had me there. But with these temperatures? I teased her saying that it was too bad our tables were already at the SSB for the craft show we are doing there. Too bad!

We did go to look at a house behind us that has been for sale for months. The price was lowered - again. It is in foreclosure. We have been looking for an investment property. We were ready to write a contract. Our realtor send us the sellers disclosure. According to them, the house is uninhabitable. It had problems, yes. About $17,000 worth of problems. But it would be a good investment property. After reading the disclosure however, I think we will be offering about $9000 less.

So there you have it. We have been hiding from the heat - with the exception of looking at that house that has no utilities turned on. Talk about hot, and that was 11AM. I know some areas are getting way too much rain, but we surely would appreciate some of it. I just don't want it to be a case of being careful of what you wish for!


Saturday, June 27, 2009

One day

This heat will break. I know I am whining about it. This heat is hitting a lot of the nation. Son in law had one of the chefs from his company in town the other day. We were invited to come to the dinner he was preparing. The company is based in Wisconsin, and Andy is from Wisconsin. Amazing, right!

He said he guessed that he was getting paid back for all the times SIL was in Wisconsin this winter when there were blizzards. I can't believe they played golf in the 103 temperatures, but they did. We asked Andy if he were ready to retreat. He said no, because it was heating up there too.

I just keep thinking if June is this hot, what in the world are we going to have in August? Scary thought. Meanwhile, we are watching our lawns burn up. The county has banned any aerial fireworks for this season. That's more than fine with me. I am such a stick in the mud that I would like to see them banned - period. I think there is more danger than thay are worth.

LB didn't spend the night last night. I am not sure what happened. In fact, I haven't heard from them yet today. Usually I get a call around 9, and here it is 12:30. In a way, I was glad. She would have wanted to sleep with me, and I don't get any sleep when she does. But she did make a "belt" for Doodle Bug. It wasn't really wonderful, but it was a beginning. When she had to turn it right side out, it wasn't fun. She said she would rather just "sew" which means just random seams. I thought she was going to break the machine though. She constantly changed the stitch length and widths.

Well, trying to stay cool here. I can just imagine the electricity bills!!


Friday, June 26, 2009

More attentive

Yesterday when I was trying to post about the searing heat, I was being entertained by chatty Kathy otherwise known as LB! She was with me all day. In fact, here she is again! So I may not make a lot of sense again today!!

I am so amazed at how well she used the sewing machine. A friend gave me some video tapes for people learning to sew. It gave me the idea of using paper to learn the machine. It was great. I'm glad I have the smaller machine because the big combo wouldn't have done the job. It will not sew without thread - at all.

So we are going at it again. It will be an interesting day. Son is borrowing one of our trucks. That was decided a while ago. It originally wasn't a problem. That is until yesterday. The big one was in the shop. The owner (who was our neighbor - his parents and original owners of the shop still are!) called with good and bad news. The good was that the a/c was easy. The bad was that when they were test driving it, it was rear ended. Damage minimal, but it was a rental with insurance out of California. So Kenneth still has the troop carrier.

I have the grocery store yet today, the farmer's market and Shadow goes to the vet. All before 4.

Have a great weekend. Around here, we will be trying to not melt!


Thursday, June 25, 2009

And the heat goes on

I cannot believe the heat here. Another day above 100, and we have had no rain since the beginning of the month. This is supposed to be the rainy season. Guess not this year.

We have been under a heat advisory and it was supposed to last until 7 pm tonight.

But! Things have changed. It just rained. I can't believe it. It wasn't a lot - I haven't checked the rain gauge yet. But it broke the heat. The temperature dropped at least 15 degrees.

Lady Bug and I were upstairs. She wanted to learn how to sew. We were busy. She getting used to the machine and finally practicing seams. I was working on her brother's scrapbook. I thought I could hear thunder. I was thinking how impossible that was. That high is right over us and not moving at all. Thunder - impossible.

I had been telling her all day that I thought it was going to rain. My knees were hurting - a lot. They started yesterday. I really thought I was imagining things, but look at what happened.

So all in all it has been a good day. LB is ready to do more on the sewing machine. We got rain. The temperature moderated - a bit. Good things.


Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Hot, hot, hot and other disasters

Talk about jumping out of the frying pan into the fire - that's kind of the analogy for our past weekend. I just thought it was hot here in Swampland. The SSB, northwest of the Capitol City was hot! The Capitol City, however, was even hotter. I think we only got to 99 at the SSB while they roasted to a 101-102 temperature in CC. I never got a true measure of how hot it was at the SSB because out thermometer is in the sun. It registered 115 there. But we had the a/c cranked down, and it was pleasant.

On Monday (we stayed until Tuesday because we went on Saturday), we had the people come out to do maintenance on said a/c. It runs well, but we always have the one here serviced in the spring and the heat serviced in the fall. It has been six years there and no servicing. They said the unit is drawing maximum amps, and we can look for parts to begin to fail. Well . . . So we signed up for their "club" which includes the servicing. It also puts up one up when calling for repairs. That is the most important thing. In that area, it is almost impossible to find someone who works past noon on Saturday. And when are we there? Saturdays and Sundays for the full day. Fridays are after 5, and Mondays are before 11. So that gives me some peace.

I don't like to waste power and water regardless. Water there is going to become a really big deal. We have a very deep well and pray the aquifer doesn't dry out. So my dishwasher was full - three days worth - on Monday night. I loaded the remaining dishes into it, set it to the dry cycle, put in the detergent, and turned that sucker on. I began noticing an electrical smell. Then I noticed that it filled, but that was all.

My relationship with that danged thing has been difficult to say the least. We hate one another. It has failed twice before (in six years). I wanted a new one. So I fiddled with it for a long while. I finally decided it wasn't going to work. So I began doing the dishes by hand. UGH!! So now I will be investigating a new one - plus having it delivered to the ends of the earth where we are.

On the way up, we noticed that the troop carrier's a/c was being a snit. It blew hot for a while and finally allowed cool air out. When it was time to eat, G decided that we would go trough the dive through at out usual fine dining spot on the way to and from - Sonic. The a/c went into uncooled air mode again.

We were headed out for a short detour. The woman who is buying the lake property has the contingency of selling some properties to buy ours. One was a 7 + acre plot. We were considering a swap of properties. We went to look at that. As we sped along the highway, the troop carrier was kind enough to spit out cool air again. And we decided we didn't want the property.

We nursed the a/c along all the way back - in 102 degree temps. It was iffy, but we were cool enough through that trip. Troop carrier goes into the hospital tomorrow.

And through this, Daughter got to install a new furnace to her system. She noticed Monday night the a/c wouldn't come on. They came out and diagnosed it to be the furnace part that wouldn't allow the a/c to come on. So they sweltered until about 10 pm while a new furnace was installed in the attic. It was 101 - remember. All were so comfortable.

I hope you faired somewhat better through the weekend. Ours was just a mild bother, but after a while it adds up. I figure our a/c at the SSB will completely fail in August. The entire family will be there for a family reunion. That's the way it usually happens!


Friday, June 19, 2009

I should know better

I love my grandchildren, and I enjoy being with them. In a few minutes, I am going over to watch them for a "little" while. Daughter is getting her first crown on a molar and SIL is going to the chiropractor.

So why the title? Daughter asked me to watch the kids. If it were just for her, I know she would be home ASAP. SIL, not so much.

When Lady Bug was a baby, I kept her. SIL was the one to pick her up. He would make all kinds of stops before he came to get her. Sometimes, it would be to go hit baseballs. It always was to stop by the house first, change clothes and check emails.

When the other two came along, Daughter has changed jobs and didn't have to be married to the job. She was here right after work. I never had to keep them for extended periods.

SIL sometimes doesn't have an original thought either. If Daughter has a sinus headache, surprise - so does he! I swear if she would have PMS, he would too. He says this chiropractor doesn't do him any good, and he feels worse after he leaves. But Daughter loves the woman, and she swears it is doing her great good.

So just exactly why am I going to babysit? I think I lost something in translation.

Not really. SIL will do anything to get out of keeping those kids. It makes it really hard for Daughter. Her present job does require her to attend regional meetings about twice a year. Overnight. She ends up finding a way for the whole family to tag along because . . . This man's job requires him to travel monthly. Hmmmm.

But I will go and sit with them. Want to bet it is more than an hour? Not a good bet. It will be. He will go over to the dentist side to "hold her hand."

I'm back and adding. I was absolutely right. He went to S*m's Club before coming home. I really think he went somewhere else too because he took Monkey Boy to the appointment. The toy that MB came home with doesn't come from that store!!!


Thursday, June 18, 2009

Ready or not . . .

I would think that a 45 year old house that already needed work done on it, and has been vandalized to the point that it is uninhabitable would not be something that someone would want - at all. But that's not the case.

We put the lake property on the market just a few weeks ago. The agent has been showing it a lot. It is for sale completely "as is" which means all the broken glass on the floor along with all the wrecked furniture. We had a verbal offer almost right away, but it was $19,900 under our asking price - which is $35,000 below the taxing authority's evaluation. We declined that offer.

Then a woman came through with an offer that was $5000 less. It was contingent on her selling some property since no one in their right mind would loan money on our property! Not in that condition - like I said - uninhabitable.

She listed her properties yesterday with our agent. The agent went to see the acreage. She called to ask how to send us the contract, and said she saw the property. It is beautiful and not too far from the SSB. She thought we might just trade.

I talked to G about it. He is interested. So in addition to our trip to the SSB, and to see MIL (bah) we will go to see this property.

How do I feel about all this? I still am dreading selling the property. There is so much emotion. But that gets me into trouble. Even around here, keeping things for emotional reasons has my house cluttered. The SSB is sleek and smooth. There is very little there that is extraneous. We have some things that came from G's father's room, but not much. Most of that is things that hang on the walls.
But there is just so much that is my dad in that house. That house is his work.

Do I want more property? I don't know. There are seven acres there. It might be a good investment. My real feeling is I have to see it before I really decide on that.

Anyway, there is a contract on the house. We are accepting. It is set for closing in October. So, ready or not, a property that I thought would never sell is pretty much sold. I just have to accept it.


Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Sibling rivalry

When I got my two children out of the house, I thought that would be the end of sibling rivalry around this house. Well I was wrong about that as I think of it more. Now I not only have sibling rivalry, I have in-law rivalry. No one things they are getting their fair share.

But that's not what I had in mind when I thought about posting this. I really was thinking about pet rivalry - the children can be another time.

Simone is so loving to her "puppies" - the grandchildren, but I'm not at all sure about her love for Shadow. Two weeks ago, we went to Son's house for family dinner. Shadow is in his playhouse rather than my bathroom. We came home to find the playhouse had been pushed away from the wall a bit. I would like to think it was just curiosity, but I'm not at all sure.

Then there was the night Simone was way too close when I was trying to get Shadow. That resulted in a good clawing and biting. I was the victim.

I am really afraid that there could be a real confrontation between the two, and both would be losers to some extent. Shadow is so small compared to a Boxer's mouth, and Shadows claws are so sharp to a Boxer's rather protruding eyes - not to mention her nose.

So to give Shadow time to run and play, I let him out periodically. When I do, I put a baby gate in the doorway to the hall. I wait until Simone has decided to retreat to her crate in the bedroom. That is no way a punishment. In the past, she has spent the entire day in that crate. But now that Shadow is here, she is in there less.

When I do let Shadow out, Simone is right there at the gate, looking as forlorn as possible. You would think she had been banished forever. She has gotten to where she will go back to the crate. I'm glad because I don't feel nearly as guilty then.

I am really waiting for this kitten to become a cat. When he is bigger, they will have to meet. But I am waiting until he can make it to a chair or couch in one jump. Right now, he only makes the side and has to climb up. Eventually, even though I hate the thought, he will be declawed. I KNOW how bad of a surgery it is. I swore I would never have it done to a cat again, but I have just had all the furniture reupholstered. We had one cat that wasn't declawed, and he really shredded the furniture.
I also don't want Simone shredded. Shadow will be a house cat. If he goes outside, it will be in his playhouse. He will not be allowed to run free - ever.

So meanwhile, I try to control the rivalry. Perhaps I just attract it??


Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Snotty answer

When I replied to my answer from the sewing machine people, they were rather snotty. I referred to the newest update as 2.2. After I did that I realized that it was actually 2.01.

Well, the person replying definitely jumped on that. They went on to say that perhaps I should make sure of what I was talking about.

I guess customer service is another dinosaur that is decomposing out there somewhere. I absolutely HATE calling customer service for a computer matter. I don't think I really have to tell why. When I bought a new computer several years ago, I bought one that is manufactured here in Texas. I, naively, thought that when I needed help, that person would be here in the US. Nope! I still hate that computer - with a passion. I had a major problem with it, and those people had me down on the floor taking the blasted thing apart.

I am not a computer repair person. My best friend went to night school so she could get out of teaching and into IT. She can take one apart, but I also remember her telling me that there were some parts that retained stored electricity. Electricity + touching = SHOCK!

But I was tearing that thing apart. My modem was fried. So now that computer only has a cable modem and no dial up because I was instructed to take that part out.

Eventually they actually sent someone out. That is what I thought I paid for in the super-duper extended warranty. But you have to take the blasted thing apart yourself two or more times before that is even offered. Oh, and it still needs a new mother board. When the third repair person came out, he didn't think that was needed, so . . .

It seems to me that businesses really don't care about making their customers happy. Perhaps it is because there are so many really terrible people in the world that demand too much from these companies. I know dealing with customers can be a pain for them too. A lot of people are not nice. They treat others worse than dirt.

With this silly machine, I have tried to be nice. But when you are looking at mid four figures for a machine, I think you are due some really good service for that machine. I haven't gotten it at all. All I get to do is drop more dollars into it.


Monday, June 15, 2009

Wasted day

We began the day taking my car to be checked out. General things like oil change and the check to make sure my little old lady school teacher car that is 11 years old will make the trip to Deluth later this summer. It qualifies as the little old lady school teacher car because it only has about 67,000 miles on it. I taught really close to home! That car wouldn't have that much if it had not been on out trip to the Bad Lands a few years ago.

It is OK. So it will be going. I had kind of hoped to go by train. Oh well.

The rest of the day has been spent trying to load the update for the sewing machine that is supposed to "fix" everything onto the machine. It appears to load, then when I restart it - the same version shows.

So I emailed the customer support with my problems of the bobbin thread coming through to the top of my design. I told them I was doing everything that is suggested - loosening the tension, adding stabilizer, using THEIR bobbin thread (pre-wound by them). When I got the answer back, it included me doing all those things.

I resent the problem telling them that there are several of those machines out here that do the very same thing and the company really needs to address the real problem instead of blaming the operator. They also said to have the dealer check it. I replied I had just gotten it from the dealer, and the dealer doesn't have a clue about these machines and this problem. That is true because one of their instructors is having the very same problem. The dealer is trying to find out why!

Oh well. As I told them I am just loading the bobbin with the same thread so when it gets pulled through, it doesn't show.

Moan, grown. I just am so misused. I did get the scrap book cover for my grandson, Monkey Boy, almost completed. Now I just have the girls' to go.


Sunday, June 14, 2009

Peaceful Sunday

The day has been quiet. We should have gone to church, but we didn't. I know G would have rather gone to our real church. I wanted to go to the mission church. I have become one of those old fogies I guess. I don't like the new hymal - at all. The mission church is much more modern in the things they do, so the music doesn't bother me there.

It has been a productive day. I made seven toddler hats for the craft show in July. I didn't put embroidery on them - saved myself that headache. They really went fast.

I also fixed the purse that I had been fiddling with. Amazing - when you put the lining in the proper way, it fits!! I was really frustrated with that purse. The idea was really neat. You have a purse that is nothing spectacular, and then you can have other outer purses that you can put it in. I really wanted to have these ready too. Now that I'm not such a dummy I just might be able to do it, but the outer purse will NOT have the extensive embroidery on it.

Perhaps if I can install the update to my expensive update, the embroidery will be right again. I loved the repair man at the shop telling these machines come in a lot. I should have gotten a Brother. I think they will give me about 80% of my purchase price on a trade in. I surely am thinking about it - seriously.

Well - family dinner at Daughter's awaits. I don't have to cook! Yea, yea, yea. Hope your weekend was a good one.


Saturday, June 13, 2009

Day with the LB

We had quite a day yesterday. It began with lunch at her favorite place - The Black Eyed Pea. We then went to the linen store to buy cushions for the chairs that were moved to the SSB from the lake house. They are so very uncomfortable, and cushions was the least expensive fix - I hope!

From there we found the little vegetable market. That was after pulling into the wrong place that was a little scary. The vegetable place had local - even if from area - produce that really looked nice. They also have a coop going. I may have to look into that.

We ended the outing with a visit to the local ice cream shop. They are under new owners, and they are quite a nice place. They added a little deli. They make quite good sandwiches!

So we finally escaped the heat (the high was 97 although my greenhouse said 104). We trundled off upstairs. I showed her how to put the fabric in the little yo-yo makers. She did well with the exception of not cutting the fabric close enough.

But there always seems to be a down side. My newly upgraded machine would sew about five stitches, stop, make it's warning signal, and the screen would say to re-thread. The first five times I DID re-thread, but I soon grew weary of that. It would occasionally sew about eight inches, and then do its same thing.

I took it back to the store today. They worked on it. It sewed beautifully. It embroidered letters beautifully. I got it home, and it pulled its old stunt of pulling the bobbin thread onto the top of the embroidery design.

I don't have time for that nonsense. My next craft show is July 11. I've got too much work to do. Bah!

But at least I am interesting LB in learning to sew. She has already staked out the other sewing table and machine as "hers." She was busy making plans for the next time she visits. She is a really neat kid!


Friday, June 12, 2009

Busy day

It is going to be a busier day than normal. I get to have Lady Bug for the day.

Her dad is out of town. They decided rather than put Monkey Boy in day care for the summer, they would hire a baby sitter. Well, yesterday the baby sitter reached her limit. The two argued all day long.

So it was decided that rather than drive the sitter bug nutty, I would take Lady Bug. It really isn't a problem, but I don't want her to feel she is getting punished. She is getting the blame for the bickering. So we will be doing some special things today. I will take her to her favorite restaurant for lunch.

I had planned to do some shopping as it was, so we will just add the lunch to the rest of the things I have to do.

I still want to get her into sewing. I hope there is time this afternoon after we get back. I bought a set of yo-yo makers. After all these years of thinking they were hokey (thinking back to the clown I made of them at camp), we made them in my sewing machine club meeting in May. They really are cute and can be used for many things. I think it would be a quick enough and cute enough craft for her to learn how to do some hand sewing.

So it's time for me to get in gear and get moving. She is being good (as is normal), but I don't want her really bored.


Thursday, June 11, 2009

Now I remember . . .

We've not had a kitten around here in about 30 years. I think I'm too old! Like babies, you get too old for some things.

I know I kept all of Daughter's children when they were born. Of course, the time I kept them decreased with each grandchild. It wasn't too bad because I could send them home! Having a kitten is so much like having a baby around.

Shadow is nothing but a bundle of energy (I know - some of you are very aware of that). We have an unusual situation around here with him. He lives in a cat playhouse. It is about 5feet square and about 3 feet deep. That gives a lot of space for an 8 week kitten. The reason he is in there is Simone.

I had been worried about her accepting Shadow. Night before last might have been the real test. I took him out for a romp. He is totally wild when he gets out. He is older and thinks he is invincible! He was skittering around here, and I decided that it was time to put him back for the night. I bent down to pick him up, and he tried to run. I grabbed him, and he turned into teeth and claws. About that time I realized that Simone was just right there - all too interested. Needless to say, I had a few wounds to tend to.

Today, I decided to put one of the baby gates we still have around here to good use. I blocked Simone off in the hall (she was really asleep in her crate in my bedroom anyway), and let Shadow out. He ran and played for about 40 minutes, and then was ready to be picked up. Of course, Simone had realized something was up, and she wasn't a part of it.

Shadow is just so active. He ran and ran, skittered here and there playing with anything he could find. It made me worry since he is still rather little. I am amazed at his growth in just a week, but still.

I have to give him "exploration time," but at the same time I worry about him getting into something and getting hurt. Like a child, he has no sense. He just goes on impulse.

I think I will like it much better when he is an aloof adult cat! Kittens are cute. They do funny things. The saying was "the trouble with kittens is they grow into cats," and that was supposed to be bad. Now I can't wait!

Oh, and I almost forgot - the pool is almost filled again!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Life's adventures

It seems that if it's not one thing, it's another. We have had the contractor come in and paint the kitchen and breakfast room. That was a blow. I used to do that. But that was then, this is now. It's not going to happen anymore. He also poured the step for my front door. Now if he can come back and lay the tile and do the fence . . . But then we will have to bleed some more money.

I finally got my sewing machine back. In addition to the expensive upgrade, I bought the expensive bobbins that are specific to the machine. I also tried to use the little embroidery machine (that came from Wally World) only to realize that I have lost the power cord. When I thought I would never use that machine again, I wasn't too careful with its accessories.

Monday we came home to find a door hanger from the pool guy. He missed last week, and we had the black lagoon again. We were to call. He said we would have to let out about 8000 gallons of water. The water was "dead" and taking enough chemicals for three pools. It still didn't hold them. So yesterday, we almost emptied the pool. I'm guessing that 9500 gallons went out. Today we can begin to refill ($$$). But I personally don't like swimming in pea soup. So what are you going to do?

He still has to replace the filter ($$$) which is a good 20 years old. When I told him to go ahead, we had not decided to replace out downstairs a/c and heating unit. But things wear out. It seems they do it all at once.

I figure I'll be on a street corner soon with my little cup. Perhaps I could muster some sympathy with: "retired school teacher being devoured by house." On second thought, I doubt it!


Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Yes, I'm here

And I have been here all weekend, but C*mcast has not been since last Thursday. This has been horrible.

I thought I was having computer problems on Friday. I even deleted a program that I suspected of conflicting with my logging on. That wasn't the problem. My problem was one of those slow, insidious little things. I would get error messages that F*refox couldn't find the host. Then I would switch to M*crosoft, and it would fix things - somehow. Then it got to where it couldn't log on.

I fiddled with the modem on Saturday. It wouldn't respond to my sweet murmurs. I couldn't coax it into life. So I bit the bullet and called. I tried letting them send a refresh signal. Nothing. I was beginning to sweat a little.

I called. I was disconnected from the first person. The second tried deleting my modem and then reconnecting it. Nothing. So I had to have a technician come out. The first available appointment? Today between 2 and 5.

Well, the good news it that I am up and running. Thank heavens. When I went to my Y*hoo account, there were something like 350 messages. Most were ads from the groups, but even so.

I went to lunch with G and Daughter yesterday. I asked her how much her air card was. You know - it isn't really any more than my cable connection. I think I am going to change. Then I would have service at the SSB - even though it is s l o w. I know this from Son In Law's. But that's ok. I would have it on vacation this year too. I won't have to pay for internet at the hotels. Yea!

But more than anything - I am back in touch. I can respond when I am directed to a web site. Yes! Things are good.


Friday, June 05, 2009


I'm keeping Lady Bug today. I love to have her here, but sometimes . . .

She loves to get on the computer. She still plays the toddler games I got her when I was keeping her full time - she was about 2! The big computer in the office is old and slow. She is young and impatient. Put the two together and you get a hung up computer!

She wanted to use one of the games to make her dad a birthday card. She wouldn't wait for the computer to load. I told her not to touch anything for a while. Well you know what she did. I turned it off and rebooted it. I told her not to touch anything for 30 minutes. Her 30 minutes is more like 7. So - hung computer again.

We finally got the program running, but there was something that was still running in the background - I guess - because her picture wouldn't print. I couldn't even turn off the printer.

At this point, the computer has been restarted yet again. We are waiting. I don't know.

I do know she has certainly inherited her patience!


Thursday, June 04, 2009

Rather expensive day

Today was the sewing machine club day. I wasn't too jazzed about the project, but that has been the case before. I usually love what we do after we finish/ Today - not so much, but then it could be due to the fact I am getting to drop $500.

I really believe there is an intrinsic problem with my machine. I am on my third bobbin case since January. Needles have gone right through them when they begin bouncing around in the bobbin. My threads shred, meaning I get to re-thread a lot.

I was about half way through with the project - shoe stuffers that are embroidered. I was doing the word "right" when my thread kept breaking and the bobbin thread was being pulled through - not the top thread showing.

One of the leaders said she was having the same problem. There is a "fix" for it in the form of an update. My machine is an 11000. There is an update available to make it an 11000SE. The "fix" was for the, you guessed it, the SE.

So trying to put a program on where there is no existing software - well you know the answer. The little tech guy wasn't sure that even upgrading my machine would fix it. The woman there asked if I was ok with the $500 for the upgrade. My response was "6000 or 500 - pretty easy answer!" The machine was a huge paper weight the way it was, and I knew trade in value would have been zip.

So the upgrade of the software is done - the machine worked. It is still there having various mechanical parts replaced to go along with the new stuff. It does great quilting. That's what it was made for. Guess who doesn't quilt!


Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Changes have to be made

Mr Shadow came home yesterday. This was after I went to Pets*art and dropped a bundle of dough. That what happens when you think you are out of the cat business.

One of my purchases was a cratel. I have become a believer in crates for dogs. Simone has hers here and at the SSB. She loves it. I know I don't close the door, but she will go to her crate several times a day to nap.

My idea was to train (Ha-Ha) a cat to a crate. I thought it would give him his safe place to sleep. Even the picture on the crate showed a cat, and it said it was the right size for an adult cat. Dream on. He was absolutely miserable in that thing.

I guess I am going to have to take back the kitty playhouse I bought when I had Son's Sebastian and Sasha here. It is like a large parrot cage. It would at least give him room to run and jump.

I feel I need something for him because Simone is showing just a little too much enthusiasm for Mr Shadow. I had him on the bed last night when G came home. Simone tried to lunge at the bed.

She gets excited with human babies, but she is showing such mothering. I don't know if she is seeing Shadow as a baby animal or a snack. I just can't take that chance. He is just a mouth full for her.

Right now, he is living in my bathroom. This is not a good place. It has been taken over by the paraphernalia associated with a kitten. One of the things I bought was the self cleaning litter pan. Expensive!! But I hope worth it. Of course, after I put the blasted thing together is said it was not recommended for kittens under 6 months. Well - guess what!

His crate is also in there, along with his food dish. What I want to know is who ever decided that bathroom doors should be more narrow than regular doors. I wondered this about 15 years ago when I had broken my ankle and couldn't put weight on it. Navigating those doors was a problem. Getting that big a**ed litter box in there was a problem too!

So I guess I will call Son to see about the kitty playhouse. Where am I going to put it? Don't know. But I will find a place. I have to. At least things are never dull. Who says retirees don't have anything to do?


Tuesday, June 02, 2009

It's a what?

About 20 years ago, a beautiful orange cat appeared at our house. We had two kitties at the time, and G forbit us from feeding it. Well, that had a lot of influence around here. Soon, not only had we fed it, it was brought in the house.

The accepted feeling around here was that it was a pregnant female. The cat just reacted like a female. It was really big too. We really though
t she must have several kittens on board. So, never having had a pregnant cat because the first order on the agenda around here is to have them "fixed," off we went to the vet.

We were on first name basis with this vet. She took over the practice of the vet we used when we moved here - and went into the horse "business." I, like so many little girls, always wanted a horse. So we eventually got three. We had them until Daughter was born. Then we had to sell them. Sad day. Babies and the horse pasture don't mix. I know, I tried.

Anyway, we had dubbed this kitty Noel because it was between Thanksgiving and Christmas. We told the vet all we knew about her. She palpated Noel. She thought it strange that she only felt one kitten. I neglected to also add this was a very long haired cat. When she did further exams, she reported that Noel was Ralph. So we had Ralph for about 18 more years.

Why did I go into such a long, drawn out post you ask. Because it has happened again. Son and DIL dubbed my new kitted Shadow. They had thought about Sassy and some other names (out pets all have "S" names), but Shadow was the choice. We were going to adopt Miss Shadow.

G repeatedly asked Son if it was really a girl, and he said he was pretty sure. They had gone though many names and Shadow seemed to be a really good name for her.

So he called me after the visit to the vet yesterday. She was pronounced to be healthy, but they
gave her treatments for worms and ear mites just in case. She was to get a bath.

Now let me introduce:

MISTER Shadow - yes once again a male, not a female!!

Monday, June 01, 2009

Once again

Today, my focus is once again on Simone. She had been doing so very well. She obviously felt great.l She often acted like a puppy again - at least that's what I'm going to assume since we didn't have her when she was a puppy.

We had "Family Dinner" here last night. Son, Daughter in law, and Wiggle Worm got here right on time. Daughter called and said they would be a little late. That figures - they only live a mile away. Anyway, DIL sked how Simone was doing. I said great. Before too long, Simone began coughing.

I had made Margarita Shrimp and Wino venison on skewers. It is so much easier for me to do that sitting at the breakfast table because I just can't stand all that long. I MAY dropped some cilantro, but it was very little. Plus - we vacuumed after the major part of making the marinade and the stringing. But - regardless, she started coughing.

About the time the others arrived - Simone spewed. Fortunately she had not been fed. But it was bad enough. Nothing puts a damper on a gathering like a spewing boxer.

We have acres of tile down here. It is easier to keep than carpet - especially with the pool. When we replaced the carpet, I gave the edict that (1) you would dry off completely before entering the house - which the biggest kid around here (G) wouldn't do, and (2) there would be no eating in the den. Ha! So when I could, the carpet went and tile came in. I do have an area rug to mark the seating area. It is about 5x7. Where do you think the dog spews?? Of course, the area rug or a few steps further - in the hall.

This morning I was hell bent on giving her her anti-acid pills. She didn't want them. As soon as I got them down, she started her "licking the air" again. This was reminiscent of the last round we had. I just knew she would start the whole thing over again. But things settled down, and she got about 1/3 of her breakfast.

In pet news - we are going to adopt a kitten. Son found three that had been dumped in the area where he was working. He is a kitty-nut. He called Animal Control, and they got two. This one disappeared until the next day. He couldn't just leave her. His plan was to take her to a no kill shelter. They were completely full of kittens. So she came home.

When I was keeping his cats, because one was so bad about liking to watch objects commit suicide, and I was tired of my things getting broken,I bought a kitty play house. His cats went in there at night. Well, kitty is in that right now. They are taking her to be vetted today. If all goes well, she will be spayed and come to us. We only thought we were cat free.

But it's ok. I have been missing a kitty. I'm looking forward to her becoming a member of our family.

That should give Simone something else to get sick over!