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Sunday, December 24, 2000 'Twas the day before Christmas and all through the house, cats were sleeping and Pete kept wanting out, only to run back in the catdoor. Mystie and Katie were playing, Jack was walking through the home caterwauling, DeeJay was being his normal "Mr Sunshine" self, the counters were peed on. In other words, the cats don't know it's a special day. So, I guess, for us, it isn't.

Friday, I took the vet's present over to the office. It's one of those fake aquariums.

I hope they'll like it. I also brought a bunch of catnip.

Brian was going to fix the handle on the passenger's side of my truck and he can't find the ones he bought a couple of years ago. It's really frustrating, because they cost forty dollars a piece back then. I don't want to know what they'd cost now. *sigh*

The weather has cooled down considerably. It's almost nine thirty in the morning and it's barely fifty degrees outside. brr.... I think Pete doesn't really know cold weather (and, yes, I know to you people outside of our little lala land that fifty degrees means put on bathing suits and start working on that tan *grin*). That's why he's in and out this morning. He can't find a warm spot outside, so he comes back inside. Then sees the sunny spot over there and wants back out. Except, it's not a warm sunny spot, so he comes back in. Silly boy. Brian said that when he was working down there yesterday, Pete ran up the fence around the fantail. Heh heh heh.....

I have more email addresses. If you want to sign up with one of them ( and just go to the drop menu at the top and choose "free email".

I've been shutting down a little earlier than usual. It's kind of nice to stay on the couch and watch movies with my husband, instead of coming back to the office every fifteen minutes or so to check for messages. I don't think I'll even turn the system on tomorrow. Give the system a break.

Katie and Mystie are almost all the way back to normal. They played for hours in the hallway with a ball last night. Katie's appetite doesn't seem to be as active as it was, she used to eat and eat when I put out kitten food. Now, Mystie has the bigger appetite.

Well, I guess that's it. You all have yourself some Happy Holidays. We'll be spending this evening with my mom. And just kick around the house tomorrow. See ya Tuesday!!


Tuesday, December 26, 2000 Well, this has to have been one of the best Christmases I can remember in years. Sunday, we went to my mom's for dinner. I had made her one of each of the shirts (she really likes the "ask me about my cat" one, she said this morning she wants to frame it. LOL!!) Dinner was really good, we visited for a while, she gave us leftover turkey for the cats and she gave us our cards. We each got money. Brian has his earmarked for stuff around the house. We kind of talked about maybe going up to Disneyland on Christmas day.

We got home and we were asleep early. When I got up yesterday morning, Brian said he did want to go, so we got ready and off we went. I took my Christmas money, because you never know if you might need it. A good thing, too, because Brian only took fifty of his.

We got out of here around 7:30 and had planned on doing a drivethru breakfast, but no place was opened. On the drive up, we hit some pretty heavy fog. At one point, it was really bright, but really foggy and I looked up in the direction of the sun. I could see the eclipse!! It was clear as day, just no bright sun rays because of the fog. It was so neat. I told Brian and he saw it, too. I understand we won't be able to see one for another couple hundred of years. I don't plan on being around then. *grin* No fancy glasses, no viewers, but that fog was a great filter. It's a picture I'll remember forever.

Once we got past the fog, it got windy. We saw small trees over on their sides. Fencing was blown over. Palm trees were bending with the wind. We've never seen it that windy. We pulled into the parking lot and for the first time since they began construction on California Adventure, we parked in the original area. For the past couple of years, we've been routed over to the parking lot by the hotel. I liked this because it meant not that many people were here. We entered the park and admired the decorations. The wreaths in the middle of main street were little Mickey heads. We walked over to New Orleans square and waited in line to have breakfast. It was so darned windy and I hadn't been able to find my Mickey hat before we left home. The short pieces of hair around my face kept blowing into my eyes and mouth. I had most of my hair pulled back in my Pooh band, but it didn't help the stuff by my face. Went into the Mad Hatter in Fantasyland and looked for hats. I really couldn't see spending over fifteen dollars on a new hat that I didn't like as much as the one I already have. I looked at headbands, but they didn't fit right. Before we walked out of the store, empty handed, I noticed some little Mickey head hair clips at the cash register. Different colors. I got two clear and they did the job. Less than two bucks. Then we just walked around the park. Brian was writing down the things that have changed in the fifteen years we've been going there. I'll be putting them up on the Disney portion of this site. There are close to fifty different things. That's quite a few. We went over to the new passport processing and upgraded our passports so that we can have unlimited entries into both parks (I paid for the upgrade with my Christmas money; I know it was supposed to have gone for the hub and camera, but I already paid for those, so what better use than time for my husband and I to be together?). Luckily, they used the photo on our old passport. I dreaded having a new one taken, because it would have looked like somebody drew a face on a beachball. Not human at all. *grin* The only ride we had been on so far was the train and we had talked about going on Space Mountain, then going home. The park had started to fill up and we didn't want to be there with tons of people. The lines in all of the rides where pretty long by this time. I had emailed Andrew, the cast member who signed my Disney Memory page a month or so ago. He had let me know that he'd be working in Tomorrowland as a greeter. We found him the second time over there and it was nice to meet someone who is as thoughtful as he is. He gave us a backdoor pass for Space Mountain and even though the line was about an hour long, we were on in five minutes. Then it was time to come home.

The ride went pretty smoothly and Brian had figured it cost less than forty dollars for gas and to eat. Since it wasn't that much, we'll try to go at least once a month. We really did have a good time. When we got home, the cats were really happy to get outside. Brian decided to repot one of the trees that was out front into a pot in the backyard. While he was doing that I watched little Pete on the bank. I swear, you can see that cat think. He was staring up at the tree closest to the gate and I watched him. I just knew he was looking for a way up. I saw him do the same thing at the fantail by the pool. He looks up and just looks. He moves his head just a little, to get a different perspective. I told Brian "I know he's gonna be up there soon. I bet he'll be up there the next couple of days." I kept saying to Pete "don't even think about it". I don't think Brian believed me (he's standing over my shoulder right now reading as I type and he took exception to this remark). He stopped what he was doing and came over and checked it out. Since Pete is a standing high jumper of Olympic caliber, which we both are aware of, Brian said he would get it fixed soon.

When the sun was getting low in the sky, we closed up. We started watching some movies. I turned off the computer early and settled in to finally watch The Green Mile, the copy I had ordered earlier this year. We hadn't watched it yet. Man, what an amazing movie. I've always been a Stephen King fan, but felt his horror stories just don't translate well into films. Two hours just isn't long enough to completely tell the story. Even as mini series, much is lost. We liked the Shawshank Redemption. We saw that in the theater. We were both sniffling and wiping our eyes for the last fifteen minutes of the Green Mile, at least. Brian said "great movie, now throw it out". He doesn't like to cry. I said "no way, next week we're gonna watch "The Color Purple" again and then "The Green Mile"." "Lonesome Dove" is another one that's pretty sad, but so very excellent. He won't watch that again, either.

I fed our inside cats before the movie and at one point, I stopped the movie so that he could feed the outfront cats. There haven't been too many of them coming around at once. We kept peeking out and everybody showed up. Whew. We hadn't seen Possum Face in a couple of days. After the movie, I fell asleep on the sofa. Brian shut everything down and went to bed an hour or so later.

I got up at my usual six this morning, opened the sliding door, carried Rusty out so that he would pee, heated up the chicken breast and split it up between the cats. I came back to the office and turned on the computer (I think my on/off button is gonna die soon). Up and running, I checked my email, checked my stats, went to my forums. It was probably close to an hour before I went outside to see how everybody was. The kittens were playing, Mystie was looking under the fence into the yard behind us. I looked around and couldn't see the black and white long haired boy. And he wasn't answering to his name, either. I looked under the pool pump, where he likes to hang out and he wasn't there. He wasn't in the tube or any of the houses. I went out front and looked towards the house. There he was. Up in the tree. Between forty and fifty feet up (see the red mark in the picture below).

Brian had heard me calling Pete and gotten out of bed. When I spied Pete's perch, I went inside and told him. He was in the process of putting on some clothes and he went out back with me. I pointed out the tree Pete was in. He had a fairly easy time seeing him, but I couldn't see him right off. It was much clearer from the front yard. I came in the house and grabbed a container of dry food and started shaking it at the bottom of the tree. Pete came down head first, slipping and sliding, hanging on to branches as he made his way down. I was able to corral him into the house and I got Mystie and Katie and brought them inside. I shut the doors. Of course, Pete sat at the doors crying like he was the saddest feline ever lived. "Let me owwwt" he said. "Pleeesssssee." "Owwwwt." Over and over. I kept telling him "no". Meanwhile, Brian had showered and started working on a new barrier for the tree. He didn't have enough wire and had to go to Home Depot. He also did our little bit of CostCo shopping. He got a box of DingDongs. Just what we need. *grin* He finally got the barrier done. I hope Pete doesn't try anymore.

I know darn well Pete's up there looking for birds. I just hate it when he catches them.

It's been a real nice holiday. The best I've had in years. It was wonderful spending time with my husband. I felt closer to him than I have in a while. It was like old times. It was a real nice holiday.


Friday, December 29, 2000 Well, so far, so good. Pete hasn't been up in any trees since Brian put up the new barrier. There's one left. He's gone up every other one. We'll have to watch and wait.

Because of the patiocam, Brian started work on the patio. He's had the metal for months out in his shop. Because he thought the patio looked pretty bad to the world, he's gotten hot on getting it finished. The metal is up, you can see the shadow during the day. We got the sunshade yesterday. He'll probably get it put up today. And he's going to put some palm trees in the corners. I told him we should get a little table and chairs, so we could hang out on the patio. The previous patio cover was wood and it was so dark. Without a cover, it's too bright. But with the shade, it should be nice. We have a couple of chaise lounge chairs in the shop we got years ago. I think those would be nice out there, too.

In this morning's paper, they said that Disneyland has shut it's ticket booths three times this week. Wow. I hope their stock is reflecting this. *grin* They closed at 11:45 yesterday, and they thought that they would be able to start selling tickets later. At dusk, they still weren't selling. Too many people. According to the article, they closed at 3:00 on Monday. We were home by then.

Okay, the next stuff I type isn't known for a fact. It's pure conjecture on my part. So, don't take it as gospel or hold it against anybody. Especially not Brian. This is my diary and my words, the working of my mind, no one else's.


Saturday, December 30, 2000 Continued from yesterday...(got sidetracked, Brian was home)....

Okay, here's my theory about why Brian had been acting so strangely. It was more than just the BIG SPENDING LECTURE, he quit doing anything around the house at all, he wouldn't feed the outfront cats at night, I had asked him if he was on strike and didn't get an answer. I went ahead and did it without complaint thinking he must be very tired. He would say odd things in response to comments I'd make. One that was particularly odd was when he was setting up the new camera on the roof, when he had pointed out that the old camera didn't plug in like the new camera and I had to hand him the cord. I said "Gee, I didn't realize that it wasn't the same." This brought forth from him "Not everything is like you think it is." Now, I asked him to clarify that and got a cryptic "time will tell". Everytime I asked him about it, because it was such a very, very strange thing to have said, didn't make any sense in the context in which it was used he'd say something about "just wait and see", "time will tell", "I can't tell you now" and all sorts of weird replies. And he got upset about the housekeeping, too. He was in a bad mood for weeks, and remember, it was contagious and I got in a bad mood. Last week, he said something snotty to me and I flat out asked him "are you trying to make me not like you?" Of course, he couldn't understand why I'd say such a thing. All of this started happening after I printed out the first reports for the initial online loan he was applying for. Granted, his mood had improved considerably after we got the new loan (look at the great time we've had since last week), but still....

I now use QuickBooks Pro for his company. I used to use Microsoft Money. I still use Money for our personal checking and for lisaviolet designs. With Money, after the taxes were done, you could close out the previous year. The information was still there, but the program didn't pull it up when making reports. Not so with QuickBooks. If there is that option, I'll be damned if I can find it. I can find nothing about archiving data. So, happy in my work, I go to the window for profit/loss reports, choose "all" and print. It came up that Brian had made a profit of over a hundred and forty thousand dollars. I didn't panic, because, honestly, I hadn't done anything wrong or anything. But Brian couldn't figure out where the money went. Remember, I thought it went to the Sticks. But he narrowed that down to only thirty seven thousand dollars. So, where did the other money go? Look at it from his point of view. There it was, in black and white. $140,000.00 profit. He could account for close to $40,000.00. Where was the rest? We obviously didn't have enough to pay our bills, else we wouldn't be redoing our current loan to get the interest rate down. We'd have everything paid off. The money wasn't there. He didn't spend it. Where did it go? There is only one other person with access to that money. Me. *sigh* I'm thinking he was thinking I had done something with a hundred thousand dollars. Vet bills? Cat food? Litter? Oh, I know, all the stuff I buy online, all those programs. Well, if he truly believed I took that money, all of his actions in the past month make sense. Now, when I printed out the stuff for the loan we ended up getting, from our bank, the profit was more reasonable. It was forty thousand. And if you consider how much of that went towards the Sticks, you can understand why we have no money. *grin* But, still, I didn't give it much thought. But earlier this week, I was cleaning up the books. See, sometimes we get checks and Brian hasn't billed the people yet (even though he's done the work). So, I apply the check as a "cash sale". Then later, I print up an invoice and send it out. My accounts payable reports weren't looking right at all, so I had to go in and clean it up. People would show a credit for one month and a past due for a different month with a balance of zero. It shouldn't show anything. At one point, I printed out the detailed customer balance and chose "all". Invoices and payments made for 1999 were showing on the list, as well as for 2000. All of a sudden it dawned on me. That hundred and forty thousand profit/loss statement included last year's profit. And last year, Brian did make a ton of money. Remember the house where he worked and the guy was worth six hundred million dollars? That was just one of the big money makers.

Anyway, I told Brian about it. About how that report had shown $140,000.00 profit. I had printed out the A/R that I was using to find out where I had to apply payments and he saw it. I pointed out the 1999 entries. "Now, this is what happened on that profit/loss statement" I told him and had him watch as I did it on the computer. *chuckle* Boy, did he get nice after that. He's been hugging me and smooching me and cooking me breakfast and cleaning windows and just being a swell guy. He's back to feeding the outfront cats. I said "gee, you like me now that you know I didn't embezzle a hundred grand". He didn't reply, but I just can't help but feeling that's what his entire bad attitude revolved around. Me, stealing money. Yeah, right. What would I spend it on? Heck, when he gives me cash, twenty or forty bucks, it just sits on the dresser for weeks. I rarely use it. I usually give it back to him when he runs out. I don't need money. I also have a feeling that he had a little outside input into this little scenario. I may share with everyone in the world, but he shares with his family. And who knows what they've been saying, the advice they've been giving him. I imagine it's not good. I'm not a family favorite, by any means. I guess I could get all bent out of shape that he'd even consider such a thing, but since he never said it out loud or made the accusation, I certainly don't want to open up that can of worms. It's a weird feeling thinking that he almost didn't trust me. Oh, well. It's all over and done with now. He knows I didn't sock away a hundred thousand dollars for *my* retirement. LOL! He did say earlier this week the question of where that money went was the reason for his bad mood. I guess that's all I'll ever hear about it. Meanwhile, my imagination runs wild.....

He got the patio finished yesterday. I like it. It's very cozy. We went with a light grey/blue shade cloth. He had wanted black, but when he told me the colors available, I pointed out how hot that would be in the summer. And it does get hot. So, although what we ended up with wasn't his first choice, I think we went with the best choice.

Lola hasn't slept in the bedroom much in the past week. She's out in the living room on the sofa or in one of the baskets. Yesteday, she was all over the yard, sniffing stuff.

This morning, we're going to breakfast, then Home Depot for more plants. Brian took some from the front to put on the patio.

We're back. If you've been watching the patiocam (not many people do) you'll notice the definite difference in the look of it. If there's a chance you may see me on any of the cameras (I'm just so shy) it would be this one. Oh, I think the backyard cam has a broken lens. There are two diagonal streaks at the left of the image. Their visibility depends on what the camera is viewing. I usually try to redirect the camera before the sun hits it, but a couple of weeks ago I didn't catch it in time and the sun was pointing directly at it. I think the lens got hot and cracked. Fortunately, there are replacement lenses. I ordered them today. They come in three different magnifications. I'll most likely be using the wide angle lens. I'm not sure if any of these are the same as the one the camera came with. We'll have to wait and see.

I'm sitting here with my hair in a shower cap and towel. I just washed my hair and put a massive amount of deep conditioning lotion on it. After I wash it out, I'll be perming my hair. I'll be using smaller rollers than I've used in years. I'm nervous about it. But one thing, whatever happens, it'll grow back. *grin*

The kittens are having fun with the new plants that Brian is planting. I hope they don't chew on the leaves. That's scary. We only have one plant in the house and it's hanging. They've tried to access it, but they didn't have much luck. *sigh*

It's warm here today, almost 80 degrees. The cats are all kicking back and snoozing. It's a lazy summer, I mean winter day here in Southern California. It's a nice day. There are wispy clouds drawn out against the sky, diffusing the brightness of the sun. There's a gentle breeze, blowing cool air. And I have a headache. It's been so dry that my skin itches if I don't keep lotion on it. On our way back from Home Depot this morning, I saw chimneys with smoke coming from them. It's not cold enough for that, I don't think.

Well, it's almost time to rinse the conditioning from my hair. I've got to end this sometime and now is as good a time as any. See ya later, most likely next year. Oh, yeah, tomorrow is our fifteenth wedding anniversary. Who da thunk? Ya oughta see the gift I got for Brian. You can get some cool stuff with a hundred thousand dollars. HAHAHAHAHA!!!! (I'm just joking.)

Oh, I have many pictures of Brian and his brother putting up the first windmill. It will be posted on the ranch site before long.

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lisaviolet is fifty something, married with no kids, takes care of lots of cats, likes taking photographs, loves Southern California weather and spends altogether too much time avoiding her responsibilities.

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