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Monday, October 01, 2001 Something strange has happened with the weather. I think that the seasons are confused. We're having August weather. In August, we had June weather. It's hot outside and there's a chance we may get a storm. According to the weather people. But I don't see any sign of any storm. It's also very breezy. This is the usual time of year we get Santa Ana winds, but the winds are coming from the wrong direction. Strange.

I put up a Christmas song. Just because.

My big problem in life right now is ants. Ants all over. All over the office. All over the garage. Even on the sofa in the tv room. Ants in the laundry room. Brian is going to spray around the base of the house so that maybe, so many won't get inside. Ish. I hate ants.

Lola is doing wonderfully. She had put on three ounces and her bloodwork was okay. Her WBC was still low, 4000, but the doctor said that was still within normal range. And it's been like that since she's been on the chemo (which leukeran is). Yesterday, when we went shopping for pet food (great sale, twenty pound bags of NutroMax for less than twenty dollars; the sale ended yesterday, so we bought five bags) I bought some 3 ounce cans of Nutro gourmet foods. I'd much rather feed her Nutro than Fancy Feast. Well, with the Fancy Feast, she won't eat the julienne cuts, I have to grind them up for her. She didn't have a problem with the Nutro. Good deal. We spent over two hundred dollars on food. I got twenty little cans for Lola, a case each of the large cans of Innova and Felidae, two bags of Nutro for the dogs and the five bags for the cats. We shouldn't have to buy much food before November. Probably only for Lola.

Last Wednesday, Rusty had a seizure. I hate those. It lasted less than a minute, but they're so scary. I was paying company bills and rattling paper and I guess that rattling sound set him off. Took me by surprise. He was on the pillow in front of the monitor (the view for the officecam) and I was turned away from him. I thought he was just having a bad dream when he started rolling. I picked him up and when I realized what was going on, I put him on the floor and let it finish. Whew. He was a little disoriented afterwards, but other than that, seemed to be okay. Poor old guy. Boney, our other cat who is on the way to nineteen, must have slipped somewhere. I noticed two days ago that he was having a very hard time walking. But it seemed specific to one leg, so I figured I'd watch him and if there was no improvement by Thursday, I'd take him in to the vet. He was doing a lot better Wednesday morning. What scares me with Rusty is where he is when a seizure strikes. Luckily, he doesn't go high anymore, stays on the bed (too high, in my opinion) or on a sofa or on the pillow in front of the monitor. This was the first time he peed, though. That I know of. And Boney is back to normal. No more limping and back in the kitchen crying for food and milk.

Well, whoever is taking care of the kittens out front, isn't making them stay here at night. I surely wish she would. It would be much easier for us to get to know them if they were here all the time. I HATE ANTS, I HATE ANTS, GET OFF OF ME, YOU LITTLE SOBS...QUIT CRAWLING ALL OVER ME, GAH!! I hate feeling crawly things in my hair, I was so happy to get rid of the freaking fleas, now it's ANTS!! I hate them!! And by knowing them, we could catch them and bring them in. *sigh*

The new card site still isn't up. We (heh, we, yeah, right, like I had anything to do with it) finally got the java to work, but now the free size pictures won't work. And I need those because that's what all of mine are. I don't want to have to resize them. They just won't work correctly.

I been telling Brian that I need new shoes before our trip to Disneyland later this month. So, Saturday, we went to the local mall and went into Lady Foot Locker. They were having a really good sale and I got two pair. It's amazing. Did you know they have shoes that help correct walking like a duck? I guess one of the pairs I got does that. Geez, I like walking like a duck.

Geez, it's hot. I just put water in the pool and I'm thinking I'm going to have to go lay out for a while. There are clouds in the sky, and amazingly, since I decided to go outside, they're covering the sun. *sigh*

Hmm...what else, what else, what else?

Benny spent the night outside one night last week. I don't block the cat door until everybody but Benny is in. Benny went in before Katie and while we were trying to get Katie in, Benny went out. I saw him by the pool, told him I'd be back out to get him. I went inside and blocked the door and sat down on the couch and forgot all about Benny. Boy, was he happy the next morning. He spent the first couple of hours sleeping in one of the condos. When he's outside, he sleeps in the doghouse on the bank, so that's most likely where he spent the night.

Sammy has the runs. I got some flagyl for him last week. I know it's because he's teething. Yuck. Last week, I heard him in the litter box and then he apparantly stood in it. I know this because after he was done, he jumped up into the bed. It was all over the spread. I stripped the bed and washed the bed clothes.

I got some flash making software from coffeecup software (you can find their banner on the affiliates page, the "shop the cathouse" link at the top of the page). I have no idea how to use it. I'd like to make some flash cards for the new card site. Geez, it's hot. Almost ninety in the shade and it's only 12:15. Ants on my keyboard....arrgh!!

Went to the chiropractor last week. We found that my blood pressure reads much better when taken with my arm up on the desk and not in my lap. Dropped 20 points. Amazing.

I have tons of stuff to do by the middle of the month and I don't feel like it. It would be easier if it would cool off. Speaking of cooling off, I think I'll do a little cooling off of my own. The pool is eighty degrees. I'm sure that will help.

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Monday, October 08, 2001 I'm very, very tired. I've spent the last week cleaning during the day and working on the new cardshoppe during the evening. I did my best to stay up as late as the wonderful woman who did all of the tweaking on the card script. She's two hours ahead of me and she'd be working on it until one in the morning.

I stripped the kitchen and laundry room floors of all the old wax and put down new. They look very, very good right now. I also vacuumed the walls and ceilings in the bedroom, hallways, tv room, living room, kitchen (where I vacuumed the cupboard doors) and laundry room. I washed and waxed the hallway floors Saturday, which was quite fun trying to keep the cats from walking on them while they were wet. Ciara ended up in the kitchen sink getting her paws and tail rinsed off. Then I had to quickly go back to the floor before it dried with pawprints. After all the cleaning I did, I see marks on the floor, coming from the back door, through the laundry room, to the kitchen sink. It was dried. I tried scraping some up with my finger and sniffed. It was dog poop. Brian tracked in dog poop on my nice clean floor. The cats peed in the laundry room against the wall, leaving a nice big puddle. I can't help but wonder if cleaning is a waste of time. I've also washed down most of the blinds. I still have the long ones in the living room, the long ones and the ones in the laundry room and garage. And Brian and I both are going to work on cleaning windows. Brian will do the outside and I'll do the inside. I still have to dust and vacuum, but that's no big deal.

I've spent hours cleaning the stove, microwave and surrounding area. I've scrubbed the counter tiles until the grout is as white as I can get it. I've used an awful lot of bleach. I shampooed Brian's chair. For some reason, the cats really like to mark it. I went over it thoroughly, twice, then I rinsed it until the water ran clear. I washed the garage floor, getting as much of the dirt and pee as I could. I shampooed once, rinsed with cool water until the water was clear. Boy, I sure like my carpet shampooer.

Today, I'm resting. Kind of. I'm doing laundry. I counted this morning and I have at least ten more loads to do. That's sofa covers, throw rugs, cat bedding and just normal everyday laundry.

When I talked with my mom this morning, I asked if she would come over while we're gone and do the litterboxes and wipe down the counters. Sure, we have a pet sitter coming in, but last year when we got home, I had quite a bit of cat cleanup to do. I just don't look forward to that this year. Mom said sure, she'd do it. Next year, we may just have her stay here. The reason we didn't this year was she wouldn't leave her dog. Well, he's gone to the bridge and now she would be able to stay. During the year, if we go, I may ask her to stay over on a trial basis. One of the great things about Becky, is she works at my vet's office.

I have five kittens who are teething and I've only found two teeth. I found one yesterday in the bedroom, one this morning in the milk bowl.

Saturday night, after my shower, I went outside to get the cats in. I couldn't find Sammy. Well, I heard a meow and I looked in the direction where the little voice came from. There was a white cat high up in one of the pine trees. Brian came out and started calling and I looked for the rest of the kittens. Richie was laying in Brian's bathroom sink and Sammy came down from the rafters in the garage. I saw Daniece and Angel inside, so that cat in that tree must have been Mystie. It probably took us a half hour, but we finally talked her down. Sunday, after he'd washed all of the vehicles and visited with his mom (I cleaned the bedroom), he checked out how he could modify what's up there to keep them out of that tree. I guess Benny was pretty interested in it, too. Because last night, when Benny was the last cat out, I sat in the swing like I normally do and called to Benny. See, Benny will come running and jump up next to me and we swing for a little bit, me scratching his head. Well, Benny didn't come running. Exasperated, tired and sore, I went inside to get the flashlight. The flashlight is kept on the window sill, next to the front door, which was open. And I looked out at the ferals and saw a familiar long haired grey cat. Damnit. Benny was out front. I grabbed the flashlight and hoped to hell that Benny didn't take off. He went around the side of the house where he'd gotten out and, luckily, he stopped when I called to him, didn't go running like cats often do. He let me pick him up and I carried him inside. Brian wasn't happy. Benny was.

I took a shower, then went and kicked back on the couch. Brian had gone to bed shortly after I laid down. I was flipping through channels on the television, when I noticed something on the floor by the hallway. Curious, I got up to see what it was. A clean dry towel from my bathroom. One of the kittens jumped up, snagged it and carried it down the hallway. Oh, joy, more laundry. I walked down to my bathroom to see something laying in front of the closet where I keep our sheets. I picked it up. A clean (?) pillowcase. How did they get that? Just then, Kirby jumps out of the closet and ran off. I guess I hadn't done a very good job of securing the closet doors. I did it then and took the pillowcase into the laundry room.

First thing this morning, I got the washer going. I was on the third load when I went into the bedroom to make the bed. Yesterday, I had stripped the bed and washed the mattress pad, put on clean sheets and a clean spread. Somebody (Mickey ?) peed on the spread. *sigh* I almost started crying, but I didn't have the energy.

Have I mentioned that I'm tired?

I found another tooth! That's three.

So. After the cards were running smoothly and I found out why I was having problems with some of them (my bad, the code had to not have any returns in it), I started to add images from the old cardshoppe. I've gotten the holiday images. Now I have to figure out categories for the other images and start adding those. It's very time consuming. But I think this new card script will be lots of fun for the user, once the user figures out how to use it. You'll be able to upload your own images to send, you can send up to ten cards at a time, you can change the background color, the wallpaper, the font type, the font color, and lots more. You can make a plain graphic a java graphic. There are some fancy mouseover options (I'm still figuring those out!) and even flash cards (I have a program so that I can make more flash cards, but I haven't had the time to figure it out; maybe after we get back from Disneyland, I'll have lots of time to do the stuff I've been putting off). The URL to the new cardshoppe is http://www.lisaviolet.com/ecard. The old cardshoppe is still in business, it will be until I get everything transferred over.

I really want to go to Disneyland, but I'm a tiny bit nervous. I understand that Disneyland could be considered a landmark in the U.S. A target for terrorists. I won't live my life in fear, though. If something happens, it happens. I could fall in the tub and smack my head and die. I could choke on a bite of cereal. There's lots of things that could happen. Am I going to just not do anything? Nah. I'll go on, doing what I do. At least, the house will be clean.

Just found another tooth. That's four.

Have I mentioned that Lola's appetite is back? She's always hungry, it seems. She follows me around until I give her something yummy. She really likes the Nutro soft she's been getting, I guess. She's even eating the kidney food. I'm glad. I'll give her anything she wants.

Georgie gets Hill's C/D. He's supposed to eat that all the time. Well, he also has access to the other food and it doesn't bother me at all. What does bother me is he only eats a couple of pieces of kibble at a time. And the other cats go nuts trying to get to it. So, last week, I put regular cat food in the bowl. Can you believe, he didn't notice? He eats it just like the other stuff. It's much nicer. I don't wig out when the other cats get up there and eat it, because I know it's okay. But they sure think they're getting away with something. Heck, even Lola is pigging down. They don't eat much from the feeder, but they'll eat out of that bowl. Same food. Go figure.

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Tuesday, October 16, 2001 Happy birthday to me
Happy birthday to me
I look like a fat cat
and smell like cat pee!!

Yeah, I'm 48 years old today. I'm looking forward to senior citizens discounts and membership in AARP. *chuckle* I've come to grips with the Andy Rooney eyebrows. Since I don't have very thick eyebrows, I've realized that trimming them is better than plucking them. When I pluck out the long suckers, I'd not be left with much. I guess I could always try braiding them.

Tomorrow is our long trip to Disneyland. Brian has been working his butt off, trying to get everything done before we leave, so he can stay up there with me. There's a chance he may just take me up there, drop me off, come home, then go back up on Friday night. :-( Some of the stuff that he was going to do to get ready for the trip has fallen to me. But that's okay. It will be nice, though, once we get home, to not have anything pressing. The house will be all cleaned (I did the mirror doors Sunday and all of the windows, screens and sliding doors around the patio yesterday). And I hope that means I'll have more time to work on my website. Adding pictures, keeping more current with you, dear diary.

Saturday night, I permed my hair again. It's just so naturally fine and it's so flat on top. I really needed some added body and volume. Sunday, I trimmed about three inches off of the top part. It was pretty strawlike after all of the chemicals. The frosting a couple of months ago, the perm Saturday. But it looks good. Yesterday morning I was thinking it looked fine. Brian says "are you gonna wear it like that?" Well, yeah, that was the idea. I guess that means he doesn't think it looks as fine as I do. :-) Oh, well, beauty is in the eye....

I gathered up all of my watches and little clocks that needed small batteries. I also looked for my way cool light up star earrings, because I knew they needed batteries, too. I couldn't find the earrings, but I found an old battery. So, I took all my watches, clocks and battery to Wal-Mart yesterday morning. One watch in particular I really wanted to have running. It plays Small World and the Mickey Mouse March. The watch I was wearing when little Mickey Squinkey got his name. I had gone shopping Saturday for new pants, I needed something with pockets because I don't carry a purse at Disneyland and I don't want to have to keep going to Brian for my card (I can get a 10% discount on merchandise and if any of my friends want to buy stuff, we'll just use my passport) or money. I found that I've lost a size since my shopping expedition earlier this year and bought four pairs of stretch denim. Three were the same brand, the fourth pair was a different brand and I tried them on when I got home. I really liked the way they looked, so I got another pair, different color yesterday. I got some superglue, because the officecam holder thingy broke and I got weekend fish food feeders for the fish tanks. Then I took the watches over to the jewelry counter. The woman was super nice, told me they couldn't do the little Seiko clock (we did it anyway, I opened the back with her guidance, dumped the battery out and put the new one in) and was out of the batteries needed for my Electrical Light Parade button and didn't do another of the watches because it didn't look familiar and they didn't feel comfortable working on it. She said I could try Radio Shack for the batteries that Wal-Mart didn't have. No problem, they're in the same shopping center. She got the flat batteries for the earrings (I got two sets of batteries, because I really want to wear these earrings, they're so cool). Well, the watch that played the tunes wasn't there. Darn. I must have left it at home. I went over to Radio Shack and got the other batteries installed there, went home and looked for the watch. I found it on the bathroom floor, wet. Argh. I hope it wasn't ruined. I'm thinking that one of the kittens grabbed it off of the bed, took it into the bathroom, dumped it in the water bowl like they do with their mousies, then retrieved it. *sigh* I got back to Wal-Mart (not even ten minutes away) and once the new batteries were installed, the watch worked the way it should. Cool.

So, when I got home, I started looking for the star earrings. I found them and opened one of the battery packages. Oops. Wrong size. There were two sizes of flat batteries and the lady had done the wrong one. Not her fault, I should have made it more clear. I called Wal-Mart and they set it up so all I had to do was go to the courtesy desk and switch the batteries out. I did that and now all of my watches and earrings and light up button are ready for Disneyland.

I called the vet's office yesterday and spoke with Becky. She'll come by tomorrow on her lunch to pick up keys and get instructions (which I still have to do). I also made appointments for the kittens to get fixed on the 24th. *wah!!* My babies are growing up!

When Brian got home yesterday, I was washing the patio doors and he mowed the grass. I washed down the patio once the doors and window were done and he washed the mats. Place is looking nice.

Anyway, so we get done, then come inside. Out front is one of those little white kittens. Talking up a storm. Brian said "are you going to go get it?" I went into the kitchen, got some chicken and went out front. I sat down on the cement and tossed a tiny piece of chick to the kit. The kitten ate it. Still talking. I tried to get it to come within grabbing distance, but it was too smart. I ended up giving all the chicken to the kitten, so Brian went and got me more. I laid down with my hand out. Nope, not gonna fall for it. I sat up with my legs crossed. A little closer. It was getting dark out. Cleo came in and hissed at the kitten when it went up to her. The kitten ran around the food station and started eating some hard food. Now, if I can just reach over there. I slowly moved my hand and the kitten saw it coming and ran. I bided my time. I put the remaining chicken in a little pile in front of the hard food. The kitten came back, yowwing. It came around the back of the feeder again. Smelled the chicken and started eating it. I moved my hand. Kitten kept eating. I moved my hand some more. Still ate. I made my move. I grabbed the kitten. The kitten grabbed me. I didn't let go. The kitten didn't let go. Brian opened the door and said "what do you want me to do?" I said get some bleach water for my hand. The kitten in the bathroom, I soaked my hand. This kitten sure got me good. I was shaking like a leaf. Adrenaline rush. Then I went into the bathroom where the kitten was going nuts. At my direction, Brian got a carrier and took the door off of it, put a towel in it, then got soft kitten food in a bowl and filled another bowl with water. I visited with the kitten every few minutes until I went to bed. The kitten finally calmed down somewhat and I was able to get a purr out of her. Yep, a little girl. I thought Autumn would be a good name for her.

I called the vet's this morning and made an appointment. Got her in at ten. She weighs two pounds, two ounces, she's about ten weeks old. She's disease free and she's healthy. The doctor gave her a half of a droncit for tapeworms (I put Advantage on her last night) and he gave me the pill gun. He said "don't say I never gave you anything." *laugh*

So, the kitten is settling in nicely. Becky, the petsitter met Autumn at the vet's office this morning. She knows that she'll have to spend time with the kitten to help in the socialization. It's unfortunate timing, but I know that Becky will be good with Autumn. She said this was bad for her, because now she'll want a kitten of her own. I hope that bodes well for the amount of time she'll spend with Autumn this weekend.

Oh, Autumn is another little flamepoint. She might be a little darker than the others, I'm not sure yet. I gave her a mousie to play with, took the mousie's plastic eyes and nose off. I fell asleep on the rug next to her, she was cuddled in my arm, purring. I think she'll be okay.

Happy birthday to me.

I most likely won't be making any entries 'til next week. So what else is new?

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Friday, October 26, 2001 I had started this earlier today, but my computer crashed. I think I'm slowly going crazy. I need some sort of break. And I'm not getting one.

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Saturday, October 27, 2001 I'm tired. I'm so very, very tired. The grandchild is visiting next door and riling up all of the neighbor dogs, mine included. Buddy is out there barking and I don't think it's fair that I should put him up because that kid isn't being watched and is a complete brat. And it's not good for Junior to get too much exercise. Not over and above what is normal. I guess this hasn't been a very good week for me.

A couple of the out front cats are missing. I haven't seen Cleo since before we went to Disneyland. I haven't seen Little White Guy since Sunday night. All of those kittens I saw earlier this month, I've not seen at all. The two orange kittens, the ones who were bigger than Autumn's siblings (who I've not seen in a month), I saw earlier this week and that was it. I'm afraid that someone is trapping them and getting rid of them. I so wish we were closer to moving. I can't imagine Cleo or Little White Guy getting into someone else's trap when they wouldn't go into mine. And Cleo lives on one side of the street, Little White Guy on the other. If the trap were on Cleo's side, Little White Guy wouldn't go into it. She doesn't live over there. The only other things that come to mind are cars and coyotes. Man, I hate this. Of the five feral cats we had fixed this summer, only two are still around. Meezer and Blue. And I didn't see Blue last night. I told Cleo last week to just hold on and stay safe a few more years, that she'll have a safe forever home. All the cats we can catch will. I did see a rather large raccoon come by to eat the other night, I'm sure it's the same one I've seen before. It had a pretty hard time coming through the gate, it's gotten so big. Maybe it's the reason the other cats aren't around. The food is all gone in the morning, the bowls are all cleaned. I hope that Cleo and LWG are okay. Little White Guy did such a good job taking care of BeeGee's kittens. I wish all the mothers were as smart as Little Guy. She brought her kittens to a place where they'd be well taken care of. I don't see the other cats and I tell myself "at least we've given six a chance at a wonderful life". But it just doesn't seem to be good enough. I want to save them all. And I can't. And it just makes me so tired.

I took all five kittens in to get spayed and neutered Wednesday. They seem to be doing fine. The boys got to come home Wednesday afternoon, the girls came home Thursday morning. Both Angel and Daniece were pretty wiped out. Daniece seems a little scared of me still. If I catch her, and believe me, I certainly don't like to chase, but when I catch her and I hold her, she loosens up and will start purring. Angel sat next to me on the sofa this morning, kneading and purring. I know she'll be okay.

All the kittens love Autumn. She's fitting in nicely. She kind of reminds me of Pete and I don't want her to end up as standoffish as he is. Although I believe Pete missed us. He's coming up to me in the yard, letting me pet him. That's something new. Before, he'd only want to be petted in the morning, before we got up. I think it was his way of saying "get up, get up!!" My mom came over this morning and Autumn is hiding somewhere, but I'm sure she'll show her face once she's done sleeping. The cats have all been sleeping quite a bit during the day.

When we got back from our trip, I noticed that Junior seemed a little off. A little, hell, he seemed way off. We weighed him and he'd lost almost fifteen pounds since last November. Oh, boy. I had Brian buy a different type of food, thinking maybe he didn't like the food that we had, that maybe they had reformulated it (unfortunately, pet food manufacturers are allowed to use their stock of old bags with new food). The new food didn't do it. Brian said that healthy dogs are supposed to look a little thin. I'm sorry, but this just wasn't right. I told him Thursday morning, that I wanted to take Junior in. I told him I'd do it myself, that Junior had lost so much weight, that I could probably lift him into the truck (if I couldn't do that, I'd have taken the car). I called to make the appointment and they got Junior in at 9:30. I could also pick up the girls at the same time.

I had to put Junior's leash on backwards, sliding the lead through the handle and putting that around his neck, because his collar was too loose and he could just pull out of it. He wasn't sure about the truck ride, shaking the entire time. I got him to the vet and lifted him down to the ground. I grabbed his lead, the carrier for the girls and we went in to the office. We didn't have too long of a wait. There was a woman there, waiting for her cat. Her cat was having tests for kidney damage. She told me how the cat fought the workers, that it took four of them to keep her cat still for the testing. Good thing her cat was declawed. *sigh* I felt bad for the kitty, having to get all of those tests and told her that. Then I said, not confrontational at all, "I'm on the anti-declaw side of the fence." She said that she'd never do it again, that she believes it's the reason her cat is so anti-social. She said her daughter trims her two cats' claws and doesn't have any problems with inappropriate behavior. I could tell she was sorry she'd ever had it done. Then they brought her cat to her, a beautiful long haired tortie, named Gracie. In a couple of minutes, it was our turn.

The first thing that was done, was Junior was weighed. He'd lost ounces short of twenty pounds. Not a good sign. The doctor came in and they put Junior up on the table. The doctor asked me questions, about Junior's habits, eating (had we changed his diet?), water intake (is he drinking more than he used to?), exercise, just background type questions. I told him that we'd cut back on how much we fed the dogs, that we didn't keep their bowl filled. I hadn't noticed an increase of drinking. He exercised as much as he usually did. The doctor didn't like the way Junior was breathing, but couldn't find anything wrong. He brought up tests. He felt that Junior should have an x-ray (remember Sandy?) and he also wanted to run a pre-surgical blood panel, that checked the function of the organs. I gave the okay. I wanted to find out what was wrong with Junior before it was too late to do anything about it. We got Junior the same month we lost Hollywood. Junior is eight years old, not very old at all. The x-ray showed nothing, all was the way it should be. He said he'd call with the blood panel results. He said that possibly Junior was just sore and that's why he was so lethargic. It could be, ya know, if the neighbors' daughters came over with their dogs and Junior chased along the fence, or he heard the dogs behind us playing. I picked up the cats, grabbed the new leash (the vet gave me the one they used there; I'd asked if they sold them because of Junior's collar being so loose) and the carrier with Angel and Daniece (who was hissing). I settled up the bill (Holy moley!! It was only $337.58! That's for a blood panel, x-ray, exam, two spays, and three neuters! What a deal! He even threw in the leash! Before the discounts, the bill was $433.40. Nice discounts, doc!) I paid it, happily. I figured that Junior was going to be okay, not very worried. I mean, how bad could it be? Junior rode better this time and he thought it would be swell to lay in my lap. I didn't really see the problem, I mean, it's less than a half mile drive and there was plenty of room. At least, that's what I thought until I tried turning the steering wheel. Junior's right front paw was under it and it wouldn't turn. I was stopping, trying to move Junior back, and trying to move forward with the truck. It took me twice as long to get home as it should have, but we got home without any injury to me, the truck, or that sweet little Junior dog.

Well, it wasn't cancer. The vet called me not more than an hour after I'd left the office. He said "I knew that weight loss wasn't a good sign. Junior has diabetes. His blood sugar was very high." I think he said it was 480. He told me what kind of insulin I'd need to get and that he'd give me a week's worth of syringes and to bring Junior and the insulin down to the office Friday morning and he'd tell me what I needed to know. Junior will most likely need shots for the remainder of his life. Oh, man, poor Junior.

I called my mom and gave her the news. I paged Brian and when he called me back, I gave him the news. I knew he'd been worried. The idea of giving shots gave all of us the willies. Me, the worst, because I'd be giving the shots. I went down to the local Rite Aid and got the insulin and asked about the syringes, cost and did I need a prescription? I didn't want to buy them yet, because I didn't know if I'd need a certain kind. I'd know Friday.

Thursday night, we went to Costco and I checked with the Pharmacy there and I could get the insulin for four dollars less (a two month supply) and the syringes (100 in a box) for almost twenty dollars less. The pharmacist there pointed out the ones she used for her dog. Small world. We spent too much money, I got a cute little foot rest for under my desk (my feet don't comfortably rest on the ground, due to the fact that I'm so damned SHORT) covered in a leopard print fabric, we spent over a hundred dollars on cat litter, Brian got some canned goods for the sticks and I got to get some Crest whitening strips. I don't know what Brian was thinking, but when he was packing the stuff in the bed of the truck, he'd moved the foot rest to below the tailgate. When he got out of the truck, he stepped on the foot rest, it went sliding and he went down. Oh, man, that was so scary. He landed on his lower back, his feet in the air and it looked like he'd hit his head on the flat (we didn't have a cart because of all of the cat litter). Shaking, I asked if he was okay. He kept reassuring me he was fine, but I can't see how you can fall like that and not be hurting. He said he'd grabbed onto the tailgate on the way down and it helped to soften the fall. Yeah, right. Talking about it, I guess he thought this little foot rest was a footstool, something that would take weight. It wasn't. I kept trying to not think about giving Junior shots, but it wouldn't go away.

Friday morning came early. I was a basket case. I called my mom, asked what time she wanted me to pick her up. She had no idea what I was talking about. "Well, aren't you going to come with me to the vet's?" Hell, no! She told me she'd rather kiss the devil's yoohoo (except she was a little more colorful than that) than stick a needle in the dog. I told her that if she wasn't able to do it, then our few nights away from home would end. Because he'd need this to live. (After our trip to Disney, though, I wasn't really sure if I'd want to be gone again over night. But that's another story. All I can say is we were very, very worn out when we got home. Still recuperating. I really should start a Disney trip report section.) Anyway, at nine, the dog, the insulin and I were at the vet. And boy, what a learning experience. The vet filled three pages with instructions. One, a schedule. A third of his food in the morning, then his insulin shot. Between eight and ten hours later, he was to get the remainder of his food (goodbye, free feed). I could give him a snack during the day, but nothing fatty or sweet. Not a problem, because they haven't gotten anything fatty or sweet since Buddy had his pancreatitis. Their only treats are raw veggies or a biscuit or two. Then a page of insulin care (keep refrigerated, shake gently before use, how to inject...). And a page of what could go wrong, the signs and what to do in case something went wrong. He showed me how to inject using a saline solution, then I did the insulin. Ish. I think my problem will be making sure the needle is all the way in. That dog skin is thick and I'm afraid to punch it, but that's what I have to do.

Anyway, I have to say that I spent the majority of yesterday in a state of apprehension (gee, I wonder if that has anything to do with my emotional state and how tired I am?). I've not been able to get much done and I'm having a heck of a time concentrating. Last night, I took three ExedrinPM to help me sleep. I did get a good night's sleep and this morning, I fed Junior his mix of dry and moist food in the shop. At 7:30, I was ready. And so was Brian. He watched me do everything I had to do. From getting the syringe and filling it, to walking outside and getting Junior. Junior equates Brian in the morning to a biscuit and starts jumping up and down. Great. Brian gets Junior a biscuit and give Buddy one, too. But when Junior sees me squatting down behind him, he rolls over on his belly. No, don't. Please don't make this harder than it already is. But he rolled back over and I had the needle in, fluid out, and needle removed in seconds. It wasn't that hard at all. The vet had told me to save the syringes in a non-flexible container and when it's filled to bring it down to them and they'll dispose of it. It wasn't nearly as frightening to do as I thought it would be. And I'm sure that soon, it won't be a big deal anymore. I do have to say that Junior is acting much more alert this evening than he has all week. He's even doing his Junior jump where he grabs my fingers. And I don't care. I'm glad to see him jumping again.

So, what else? The trip to Disneyland was really tiring. I think I'd spent too much time cleaning house to go up there and go go go. But that's what we did. On the way up, I realized that I hadn't told the sitter to close the front windows (worried about Benny ripping the screens and letting everyone escape), keeping the toilet lids down (didn't want any drowned kitties) and feeding the dogs. Well, we didn't leave here until after eight and we got up to Anaheim around 11:00. We checked in, got a room on the top floor, overlooking Disney's California Adventure. Cool! Hungry, we walked around Downtown Disney, looking for a place to eat, but everything was closed. We went back to the room and found that our friends had called and left a message. I called them and we didn't get to sleep until 12:30. I woke up at 5:30 and called home at six. The sitter had already left. I found out later her son had forgotten to pack pants, so she had to take them home so he could properly dress for school. I called my mom and gave her the message and she was able to contact the sitter. We spent all day Thursday at DCA. That night, we couldn't decide on what to eat, so we had chips that we'd brought with us. I finally got a hold of the sitter at 6:30 and by 8:00, I was fast asleep. I slept almost twelve hours. We did DCA again on Friday. And we once again had chips in our room for dinner. Saturday, we went to Disneyland and I have to say it's the worst time I've had there in memory. I was tired and cranky and the cast members were generally rude. I'm not looking forward to going again anytime soon. I was more than happy to get home Sunday.

Once we were home, I had to unpack and change the sheets. I noticed that the door to the bathroom where Autumn was being kept had been left open for an extended length of time. I found this out because there was cat pee on the bathroom counter. Obviously an adult cat had been in there. There was still kid poop with toilet paper in my toilet. Someone forgot to flush. There were paw marks all over Brian's toilet seat and in his toilet. Someone didn't put the lid down. But that was about the extent of it. The cats who like the outdoors couldn't wait to get out. But they were happy to see us. It didn't take too long before we got back into some sort of routine. Nobody seemed to have been adversely affected by our absence. And Kirby didn't need to go to the vet for blocking. Whew, that was nice.

So, I'm almost back to normal. I'm slowly not feeling so tired. It would be nice to see some of the absent cats. It would be nice if Daniece didn't run everytime she saw me. It will be nice when we get Junior's blood sugar under control. I don't have any control over the absent cats, but I can work on the other two. So, that's where I'll put my energies.

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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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