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may 13, 1999 Well, this morning didn't start well. Last night, Buddy started barking. Now, the only reason it bothers me is because of the neighbors. I don't want them getting angry. So, I got out of bed and told him to be quiet. Of course, I can't shout at him and he's way in the back, behind the shop. So, I whistled for him. Junior came running, Buddy didn't. He knew. The quiet lasted for perhaps forty five minutes and he started up. I just stayed on the couch, easier to get up. Of course, Brian slept through the whole thing.

Then, this morning, early, early, the phone rang. I had to turn on the light for Brian to answer the phone. I said "my mom". He answered it. I was right. She was calling from Ireland. I asked why she was calling so early. It was five am. Anyway, she said it's raining over there. It has been since they arrived. They are leaving for the castle (where the wedding will be) so I can't get in touch with her for a couple of days. She said that their flight over was awful, they couldn't unlatch their seatbelts because of the turbulance. The tornados are so bad in the midwest, that they had to be re-routed. She said that they are doing fine and she will contact me later. I didn't tell her that I tried calling them yesterday morning.

This catsitting has me all thrown off of my schedule. Instead of exercising this morning, I checked my email and Brian started without me. Well, I didn't want to be all sweaty to go over to my mom's and I figured I'll just exercise later. Then I can take a shower. It's hard to do all this stuff in the morning when there is a deadline, so to speak. I have to get over to mom's fairly early to feed her outside cats. Mamma let's me pet her, but I think there's something wrong with Patch. She sits all scrunched up. And can you believe my mom didn't leave any water out for them? If there's a special watering place for them outside, I couldn't find it. So, I found a bowl and put water in it last night. This morning, it was empty, so I refilled it, of course. MissE still won't come out to see me. She's supposed to get some people tuna every other day and I left some last night, this morning it was gone. I brought over some fresh catnip this morning. She likes that, I got her to come out from under the bed for a little while. I scratched her head and back, she purred, then she went back under the bed. I'll spend a little longer with her tonight. I fed Patch and Mamma, Mamma ate the food right up, but Patch didn't seem very hungry. She did nibble on some of the catnip I put out for them. I hope she's okay.

I'm back on Keflex. The dentist looked in my mouth, said everything looked okay. He said that we probably didn't get rid of all of the infection with the first round of antibiotics. He said that where the infection is (in the gum at the root of the tooth), the body has a hard time flushing it out of the system and they can be hard to get rid of. So, back to the antibiotics. Which kind of make me feel rundown. Or maybe that's the infection. My tooth seems to be feeling a little better.

The weather is crummy again.

I found out yesterday what stud tail is. It's a waxy substance secreted on the *top* of a cat's tail. After Blackie had his bath at the vet's last month, his tail was still nasty. I've brushed it, trying to get all of the gunk out. Now, I know why he has all of that gunk. As the testosterone leaves his system, the secretions will get less and less. Good.


may 14, 1999 Well, it's late afternoon, I hadn't planned on writing in here today. But, I just something new and cool on my website to share with others and I wanted to let people know. You can now have web based email at Cool, huh? Anyway, I've been waiting a week for the setup info and I got it today. And now the mail is up and running. Where ever you see this little button:

click on it to get to the login site. Or, to set up your free email account. I hope *somebody* uses it, besides me. *grins*

This morning, the cats were hanging around under one of the trees. Looking up. I had to investigate and it seems that the local crow family is teaching Sonny how to fly. And he was in our tree. There was a big bird poop where Kirby had been hanging out earlier. I'm sure glad he moved. He has no idea what a mess that would have been. The young crow finally flew over to Maddie and Alex' yard, hung out in their avocado tree. Maggie followed in our yard. She was sure interested in the big black bird.

The weather is making me nuts. I want a day where I can open all of the doors and windows and clean again. It's been so cool and humid that if I do the carpet, it will never dry. One of the local columns in our newspaper was even complaining about it. Nothing we can do to change it, though. And here Brian wanted to move someplace where it isn't so hot. Boy, did he ever get his wish and we're still in the same place.

Buddy was yapping so much last night that Brian actually put the barker collar on him. And oddly enough, I slept through the night, didn't have to get up to piddle once. I wonder if his barking wakes me up and I just don't remember. Whatever, it was nice to have a solid night's sleep. It's been years.

My mom's cat came out to visit with me this morning. She's so standoffish until she decides to be friends. Lisa's sister, Patch, doesn't look like she feels good at all. I hope she's okay. She won't let me get near her. She did let me pet her while she was eating, but the minute she moved from the plate, it was hands off. Lisa's mom's pretty nice. She lets me pet her, no problem.

Catsitting and exercising has kind of thrown me off of my schedule. Yesterday, I came online and didn't get around to exercising til yesterday afternoon. So, I figured I wouldn't come into the office until I finished exercising. There's nothing so important here that it can't wait thirty minutes.

Blackie is being a pill about taking his pill. The stuff he's on is *supposed* to be tasty and chewable. Where he ate the crushed amoxi without a problem, he's not doing the same thing with the Baytril. Today, I ended up using cooked chicken with the pill. That worked a little better.


may 16, 1999 I found out this morning that I can just open Blackie's mouth and put the pill down his throat. Now, I won't have to worry about "did he get all of the medicine?"

Yesterday, we went to Walmart and I got more enzyme cleaner. It was hidden, way at the back of the shelf, behind the shampoo. Heh heh heh...... I cleaned 'em out of it. Also got a sisal scratching post, that needs a little assembly. I got it for Misse. I took it over there last night and tried to put it together. Something's loose inside of the tower and the screw won't take hold. I have to return it. Spit.

So, having more enzyme cleaner, I got out the Hoover steam vac and cleaned those bad spots. I even did a couple of places I didn't get the last time I did this. Like in front of the door to the garage and I pulled Brian's chair out from the wall and ran the machine in there. Sure smells better. I should wash the hallways today.

Well, yesterday, between washing, I was checking out the newsgroups. And somebody posted a list of "things that *try* our nerves". Here is the list, with my responses in red.


may 17, 1999 Yay!!! Last night, Blackie had just gotten out of the catbox. I checked it out and he peed in there!!! YAY!!!!! There was still a little blood in the urine, but he's on antibiotics for another week.

Brian figured he wanted some more papertowel holders, so he said he would go with me to WalMart, when I returned the scratching post. We went. Had so much fun. He wouldn't let me get a cart, the bum. He said if we got a cart, we'd fill it up. Well, isn't that the point? LOL!! Anyway, we returned the scratching post, got a new one, checked to make sure it would work. Got a bunch of other stuff, too. I got yarn and I'm gonna make a baby blanket for Sheri, the vet tech's baby, who's on the way. Ultrasound says girl.

Well, took the new scratching post to my mom's last night, tried to put it together. When I took the screw out, something went wrong in the post again and the screw wouldn't work, just turned loosely. So, I called Brian, really frustrated and he said to bring it home and he would fix it. I played with Misse for a while, fed the cats, came home. We watched X-Files and then Brian fixed the post.

With all the cats in and chores done, we settled back. I started to do a mental head count. Didn't remember seeing Red lately. "Have you seen Red?" "No." "The last time I saw him was when he went out this morning." I got up and started calling him. No Red. I went outside, called him. No Red. Great. Brian looked out front and saw the outfront cats. "Is that Red?" I looked. No, OC. I went back into the backyard, opened the shop door. Called Red some more. I asked Georgie (who gets to stay out longer than the others, because he comes when he's called and when he's outside, he's not fighting inside) if he had seen Red. No answer. Brian came out and looked. I said "well, let's just leave the door open and see what happens," and we went back in and watched tv. I went into the kitchen to get some water, looked out and saw him. I told Brian and I went out and tried to get Red to go into the garage, through the cat door. He was too scared, nervous. It took about a half hour and Brian had to help (we cornered him and he had no option but to go into the house) but we finally got him in. He was very happy once inside. I was even able to hold him for a couple of seconds, until he realize that none of his paws were on the ground. *grins*

This morning, the phone rang a little after 7:30. It was my mom. I told her I would call her from her house. Calling from Ireland, the charge is a couple of bucks a minute. From her house, it's twenty-four cents. Big difference. At 8, I gathered up everything, purse, scratching post and went over to mom's. I brought the post in, opened the shades and grabbed the portable phone and called mom. Boy, it was good to hear her voice. As we were talking, I grabbed a can of food for Misse and dished it up. While mom was talking, I accidentally disconnected her. *grins* I redialed and the phone was busy. I wondered how long it would be until she realized she was talking to herself and hang up. Not long, this time (this has happened here and sometimes it's a few minutes before she hangs up). She asked what had happened and I told her. She kind of yelled at me (laughing, though). We talked for quite a while. She said the wedding ceremony was beautiful. She said the weather is awful, it's rained every day they've been there. And I felt just terrible telling her how nice our weather is finally getting......NOT!!! *snicker* She told me to call her again tomorrow. She asked if there was anything I wanted her to bring back and I said "yeah, Sean and Ciara", my cousins.

Guess I'll get busy. I'm going to thin out the plants in the garden today.


may 19, 1999 Ciara has the runs again. And I'm sure it's diet related. She can only get so much CatSip a day, we've been good on that. I guess it must be the cheese she ate last night. There was only a little bit, pieces that I had grated (we had quesadillas for dinner), but I guess that was enough to throw off her system. What a drag it must be to be so sensitive to food. So, now, I'm giving her a little nonfat yogurt to help balance out her good/bad bacteria. Let the good bacteria take over.

When we were at CostCo the other day, a man had a new Steam Vac in his cart. The one that heats the water....I was salivating..... I want one. I'll give my mom my old one. The guy that was buying it said it was the best deal he found. He said that Target had the same model on sale the previous week for $289. This one was $229. I'm gettin' one.

Well, I'm finally gonna try to record CDs. Brian wants to start using the AB Roller and he will need more room in the exercise room for that. And when he's watching the tape, I might just listen to a CD. When I was single and not fat, I would make tapes to exercise to in the morning before I went to work. Just the right tempo. I'll do the same with the CD. I'm starting with the recordable CD, just to get use to the functions. Because if I blow it with that one, I can erase it. It won't play in a normal CD player, though. I need to use the other ones for that. I'm going to take all of the CDs out of my 110 disk player and put them up and start over. (I have thousands of CDs.) And I'm going to have to move stuff around in the exercise room so that Brian will have room. Our huge JBL speakers are in there, I'll have to find a place for those, and I really would like to get all of the stuff off of the treadmill and start using that. I've just been using the bike. I tried the CardioGlide but was so out of shape that I gave up after a couple of minutes and went over to the bike. I really should do the CardioGlide because it will help stretch out my back.

I just keep noticing different things about Blackie. This morning I realized that he has a hard time lifting his head to look up like the other cats do. Who knows how that damage came about. Brian loves him, so much. I think sometimes he looks at Blackie and is just overcome with all that Blackie has been through. And Blackie loves him right back. Brian won't feed the cats unless he absolutely has to and this morning, he said that he already gave Blackie his Fancy Feast.

I tried to run the rototiller in my garden the other day and it dawned on me that I had no idea how to even start it. I figured that out (switch these two buttons, hold this thing down while pulling that cord). Then it kept dying on me. I gave up and went and got my little pitchfork. Didn't have a problem starting that one. And guess what? Lettuce doesn't transplant well. I was trying to move some of the plants from the seeds that spilled and they didn't take. I'll try again, but this time I'll leave the dirt around the roots.

I sure miss my mom.

Blue, OC, Angus and Cleo all show up together at night for dinner. Blue, being the youngest, is getting less and less afraid of me. The other night she came over to the bowls to eat while I was still dishing it up. The reaction of the other cats when she does this is so funny. They just look at her like she's nuts. "How can you get so close to that thing?" Since I never move quickly or make any sort of move that could be considered threatening, I think the rest are getting a little more sure of me. Except OC. He stays outside of that gate. He's been in and doesn't want to be there again. LOL!!


may 21, 1999 Boy, where did yesterday go? Let's see. I finally got around to straightening up the exercise room. We had bought a junk rowing machine years ago at Target for Brian which we never used, so I put that in the hallway, for Brian to put in the dumpster, as well as the box from this cool *moonlight* lamp and the CD recorder box. Then I had room to put the speakers against the closet and I moved the stairstepper over there, too (you people that can use stairsteppers are gods and goddesses), until I get in a little (ha) better shape. Anyway, I was able to make enough room to put the AB Roller down for Brian. I vacuumed and put everything back into place. Brian's just thrilled to spit. I also took all of the stuff I had heaped on the treadmill, so now I can use it, too.

The trial CD I made came out okay (I did it on an erasable CD). So, then I did one that couldn't be erased, starting off with one of the first Juice Newton albums. One I've been able to find on CD. I blew it right away. When didn't have the needle right over the beginning of the album, I had it *off* of the album. Big noise, but I was stuck with it. Only a couple of seconds, though. I had to manually do the song number, because the recorder didn't pick up the silence between songs. After that album was recorded, I figured I had enough room for the old Waylon & Willie album, the one with "Mama, Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Cowboys". Went pretty smoothly. Brought back some old memories, too, fun times with friends, back in my partying days.

Well, Blackie is starting to move from room to room. I think he likes being by me. He was in the office yesterday morning and he was here until a little while ago. He left when I had gotten up to clean the hallway. I enzymed the walls and mopped the floor. Last night in the kitchen, Blackie started bodyrubbing Brian's legs. Brian said "Honey!! Blackie's rubbing me!!" all excited. Then Brian sat down on the step stool and petting Blackie for a long time. Blackie loves to be petted.

Ciara is still stinky, but I think her diarrhea is under control. Now it looks like Bobby is having a problem. *sigh*

Misse likes me. She's waiting for me each morning by the back door. This morning, she grabbed my leg when I didn't pick her up quickly enough. I've been bringing the morning newspaper with me to read while I sit with her and this morning she climbed up on my lap, nuzzled my armpit and, purring, took a nap. Patch and Mama are also getting use to me. They both let me pet them now. I tried picking Patch up a couple of days ago, but this scared her and she ran off.

I called the Oriental Trading Company yesterday and ordered a bunch of balloons. I've been getting their catalog for years and they have a lot of cheap, fun junk. I ordered them express delivery, so hopefully, they'll be here today. If not, I just wasted some money. If they do show up, when we go to CostCo this weekend to stock up on cat litter (Brian wants to buy a lot of it) and the Steam Vac, I'll get a helium tank. I'll blow the balloons up and string them all along the railing on mom's porch and make a big banner, saying "welcome home". That way, she'll have something fun to come home to.

We got some money in the other day and I was able to once again pay off the home equity loan. Yay!! Brian's going to try to get the deed recorded in our name today, if he has time. The home equity loan has nothing to do with the deed, but it's nice to know that we own nothing to anybody on our home.

A homeowner and out of debt by 45. We own our vehicles, too. A great feeling. Now, if we could only lose some weight. *grins* But we've been very good about exercising and not eating junk. Could this be the midlife change? I like it.

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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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