Throwback Thursday

#tbt:  Apparently it’s quite The Thing on Twitter.  I’ve been thinking about reblogging some of my posts from The (Old) Stream of Conscience, and “Throw Back Thursday” seems as good a day as any, yes?

When deciding what post to reblog, I took a look at my 34 categories.  How to choose?  Why, my old favorite, of course, Random.org.  (I also used it to pick the style for this blog.)  It spewed out 14, which turned out to be the ubiquitous “Life & Musings,” i.e., pretty much any damn thing.  Since the blog covered 5½ years, there were 9 pages of posts to peruse; yet, the one I chose was on the first page.

It was written on December 8, 2012, in response to WordPress.com’s Daily Post challenge, which asked “What is your earliest memory?  Describe it in detail, and tell us why you think that experience was the one to stick with you.”  Mine was easy-peasy.  (I’ve edited only slightly.)

My Earliest Trauma Memory

And how appropriate for the season!

A two-and-a-half year-old me entertains Christmas visitors.

Entertaining visitors; permanent crisis averted

Harken back to a slower, quieter time: the mid-20th century, an age without digital cameras, when it took a few months to fill up a roll of film and get it developed.

Christmas day:  One 2½-year-old went to bed the night before, thinking of Santa Claus on his rounds, and worried she wouldn’t be able to sleep for all the excitement.

But I did fall asleep, which made the night pass more quickly.

Read More…

Romeo in 2 Parts

Romeo has found his preferred sleeping spot.

Part 1: When Insomnia Is a Good Thing

I’ve battled insomnia most of my life.  Exceptions would be graduate school and the Navy.  Nowadays, it’s more annoying than debilitating, since I don’t have to work.  Once in a while, though, sleepless is rewarded with something special.

Romeo head into the kitchen.

The body may look sleek, but it’s solid—and heavy!

A couple nights ago, at around 3:00 a.m., I heard someone in the new “diggie-box” currently in my bathroom.  Since Shadow was on the bed with me, I knew Romeo had come out of his hiding spot.  When he came out of the bathroom, he looked around, saw the door to the bedroom was open, and decided to go exploring.

Romeo and Shadow get acquainted by touching noses.

Greetings

A short while later, I too got up for a mug of warm milk to stimulate some melatonin.  When Romeo and I passed in the hallway, he didn’t bolt.  He came into the living room and then ventured into the kitchen, where I could hear him licking out a can of Friskees.  (Gigi loved to lick the can clean, and I got in the habit of putting the empty can on the floor for Kimmi and Shadow.)

Romeo then wandered around a bit, eventually leaving Shadow and me to watch tv (me) and snooze & snore (Shadow).  When I went back to bed, Romeo was apparently still checking things out as he wasn’t under the bed.

Sadly, though, he was back under the bed in the morning and stayed there all day and the next.  I’d really hoped we’d passed that milestone, but knew it would have to be on his terms, not mine.

Read More…

Where Art Thou, Romeo?

Romeo has arrived!  I couldn’t wait any longer to bring him home.

Romeo's new homeunder by bed.

Here he is! Under the bed.

The first thing I asked as I walked into the shelter was if Romeo was still available.  He was.  When I said I wanted to adopt him, the gal at the desk gasped, “The 12-year-old?”  I suppose they’re so used to people wanting kittens or young cats, someone actually requesting an older animal is a surprise—and a delight!

Someone had paid for his adoption, so he was free!  I plan to “adopt it forward” and pay the adoption fee for another cat.  I was going to do so as we left the shelter, but the gal at the desk computer had never done it before and it was taking longer than usual.  Since Romeo was scared and nervous, and in a too-small carrier, I didn’t want to keep him in it longer than necessary.  S0 I asked if I could do it later.

Yep, the carrier I brought with me turned out to be too small.  Romeo’s bigger than I thought.  In fact, he weighs more than Shadow, who is no thin mint.  He was so good on the way home.  Even though he was scared and the carrier confining (although he was able to turn around in it), he meowed only once.  I think he meowed once more when we got home, but that’s it.

I put him in my bedroom, thinking it’d be a good place for him to get used to the smell of Shadow and me.   It wasn’t my greatest idea.  I should have put him in a spare room I don’t use so often.  Because wherever I go, Shadow goes.  (Closing the bedroom door when I’m in there doesn’t help, becase Shadow can open the door!)  Since I don’t have anywhere else to sleep, Romeo has to share the space with us every night.  I don’t think it helps his stress level.  But he did come out some time last night to use his box.

So far Shadow hasn’t hissed, and shows signs of curiosity rather than aggression.  He knows something’s under the bed, but hasn’t pursued it much.  So that’s encouraging.

I’m not going to rush Romeo to come out from under the bed.  But damn, I want to play and snuggle with him!

Romeo lashed out at me for taking his picture.

Apparently Romeo doesn’t like having his picture taken.

I’m off to the Alexandria Animal Shelter website to pick out a cat to sponsor.

♪♬Woh-oh, No Domino♫

(A riff on Van Morrison—if  your old enough to remember him, that is.)

The kitty search saga hit another snag; another adoption attempt has failed.  And I was this ->||<- close.  The way these rescue groups act, you’d think I beat and starve my cats.

Domino is a tuxedo cat with an adorable pink nose.

Aw, just look at that sweet face.

A couple weeks ago, I met Domino, an older kitty with a thyroid problem.  Fortunately, I’ve had experience with thyroid problems. Gigi had one, which we treated for two years.  Domino and I got along famously.  He let me hold him, he purred, and he even licked my finger.  And his foster mom was simply thrilled I wanted an older cat.  (She and I seemed to get along, too.)

But, I failed the vet check. It’s a long story that I’m sure no one is interested in.  Suffice it to say the rescue group thought I’d been untruthful in my application, and were concerned that Shadow hadn’t been to the vet in a very long time.

Read More…

Found on My Kitchen Table

The welcome sign on my "welcome cat" broke.

Before

Clearing things out always offers a surprise or two.  Having washed the dishes and put away the laundry this morning, I decided to spend a little time clearing off the kitchen table.  Here’s what I found:

  1. The drip tray to a large, round George Forman grill (which also bakes) I no longer use.  I immediately put the grill and all its accoutrements in the Goodwill box without feeling guilty that it wasn’t complete.
  2. An upside down salt shaker.  Who the hell did that?  No, the holes weren’t covered with tape, so a pile of salt spilled out when I turned it over.  Fortunately, it was sitting on a ceramic tray and was easy to clean up.  It was nice to see the tray again.  It’s very colorful and cute.
  3. The pump to a bath and shower gel I’d been looking for.  I’d thought I’d found the pump, but this one is 1) black instead of white, which coordinates goes with the decorative bottle, and 2) is shorter and more likely fits the squat, round bottle.
  4. Krazy Glue!  Two bottles!  Now I could fix my resin Welcome Cat sitting outside my door.  The “welcome sign broke some time ago.  I was able to fix it with Krazy Glue, but when my neighbor moved out-  :'(  -it got broken again.  After failing several times with bottle #1, I tried bottle #2.  No love there, either.  So I ended up slipping the chain onto one of the cat’s wire whiskers.  Actually, it doesn’t look that bad.
At least the welcome sign is horizontal now.

After

Hmm, I see I need to straighten Mr. Whiskers around.

(The metal black and white sculpture belongs to my Boston terrier-loving neighbor.  She kindly left her Welcome Dog when she moved.  Since she’s renting her place, she comes back now and then.)

Read More…

A Mega-Clowder of Cats

Mildly frustrated with my experiences at the Arlington and Alexandria animal shelters (emphasis on mildly), I did a Google search for cat rescue organizations in the area.  It came back with Fancy Cats and King Street Cats, two organizations I’ve heard of.  A friend had adopted two adorable cats from Fancy Cats a while back.  A neighbor has volunteered with King Street Cats, located just down the road from me.  (There’s also Tails High, which I found from a pet rescue website; and FOHA, Friends of Homeless Animals, which someone recently mentioned.)

I looked through Fancy Cats and found a few cats I might be interested in.  When I emailed them asking about seeing some cats, they replied that I should fill out their online application form.  So I did.  I then received an email asking to elaborate on a few of my responses, mainly having to do with why I’d surrender a cat, but also how my current cat would respond.  I replied once again, only to get a damn phone from them this afternoon, expressing even more reservations.  These had to do with Shadow and his litter habits.  They decided (sight unseen) that Shadow didn’t like to share his litter box and that a new cat would smell his outside-the-box mess and mess there, too.

Read More…

Shadow’s Lucky Day

Shadow loves to sleep on his back with his belly exposed.

Shadow in his favorite sleeping pose.

Yesterday was a good day for Shadow; not so good for me.

I visited the Alexandria Animal Shelter in the afternoon to meet Roger and Ivory, a 12-year-old brother and sister pair of cats I’ve had my eye on.  They’re said to be two of the sweetest cats ever.  Sadly, Ivory hissed at me.  It was so unlike her, the staff volunteer was shocked.  She may have smelled Shadow on me, which means it probably wouldn’t have boded well to bring her home.

Update  (I wrote the bulk of the post yesterday [Sat]):  It looks like Roger and Ivory were adopted!  The shelter posted that 14 animals had found “forever homes” yesterday, along with 15 on July 3rd!

Read More…

Four(th) Musings

toes

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

This is a red, white, and blue seperator.

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

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

This is a red, white, and blue seperator.

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

This is a red, white, and blue seperator.

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

 

What’s in a Minute?

One-Minute Organizer set of books is written by Donna Smallin.

One-Minute Organizer (Plain & Simple edition)

While waiting for an appointment yesterday, I came upon an interesting book called One-Minute Organizer Plain & Simple by Danna Smallin.  Leafing through it, I found some excellent quick tips for cleaning out clutter and getting my home (and life) in order.  I attempted to capture its wisdom with my tablet, first by taking pictures of the pertinent pages.  When that proved horrendously cumbersome, I tried to jot down notes on my tablet, only slightly less horrendously cumbersome.  I would have used the old tried-and-true pen-to-paper method, but had no paper.

After mentioning the book to my therapist (the appointment), she told me to take it with me.  So I did—with the intention of returning it after I’ve reaped its beneits.

The book is much like Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff and other inspirational books, with little tidbits of help on every page.

The first chapter is titled “Getting Started.”  It discusses the importance of goals, consistency, accountability, and rewards.   For me, one tip stands out from all the others:  take care of today’s mess.  Tackle those chores that need to be done regularly, such as the daily mail, dishes, and laundry.  To those, I would add email and paying bills.

That tip was a light-bulb moment.  My to-do lists have always been about “keeping up” and never about “moving forward.”  Just that one sentence has changed my thinking.  Now I can separate those things I need to do every day from those things that will help me reach my goals.

I’ve addressed today’s mess, having cleaned and put away the dishes, folded and put away the laundry, and dealt with the mail.  Tomorrow, the goals!

 

Two Too Many

Kimmi shows off her back, where most of her color is.

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

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

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

Read More…

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 104 other followers