88 posts categorized "Susan's gratuitous cat picture"

garden update

There is not much of an update, I've been down with THE flu the last couple of weeks.  I'm feeling much better, though not quite myself yet.

I planted a corner of muskmelons.  The melons have been floating around my studio for a couple of years, I picked them up off the sidewalk at work, they fall off the oak trees in the spring...I assume they are baby acorns.  I used a seed packet Brae gave me as a label, I cut a slit in the bottom to insert a toothpick.


I then went on a frenzied search for the plant stakes Kat sent me.  It took me a week to find them.  I want to make plants to match the labels, so didn't want to progress without them...not that anyone will be able to read the labels since the font is so small, but I don't feel good and lack direction, and the stakes give me direction.


Sunflowers.  Okay, I've got a Bonnie Lavish kit for those that someone, don't remember who, gave me.  Maybe I pulled it out of a share box that was circulating a few years ago.


Ha!  This is why I stopped planting sunflowers in my real garden, they turn their faces to the neighbor.  Really though, this angle is looking from the back side of the garden, the sunflowers are facing forward.  I wanted to see the stake in this picture, which makes me think that I should save them for potted plants set at the front of projects, so the stakes can be read, or perhaps for the waiting-to-be-built half-scale bungalow.

(The tall plastic plants in the bottom right corner....Kat gave me those too.)

While I think about stakes and plants I'll busy myself with the rest of the fence, which I'm making from some metal trim stuff that Susan gave me.  I cut some posts from dowel this morning, dipped them in weathering stuff, and will see how they look tonight.


I keep saying "gave me, gave me, gave me"....this is turning into quite a community garden, so to speak.  So far Elizabeth, Kat, Brae, Jodi, and Susan have contributed.  I enjoy being part of our little community.

Ester says "enough with the camera already" "Hi!".



M is for Milo

In August, in the midst of home renovations, I posted this picture and said  I'd tell you the story later.  It's story time.


Last July my daughter, Kate, had a feral kitten on her property, living in her garage.  It wouldn't let her come anywhere near it, of course.  Kate didn't want it to take up permanent residence, spreading disease to her two cats, so she set a live trap.  First she caught one of her own cats, Belle, then she caught a neighbor's ginger tabby, then Belle again, but finally, in early August, she caught the feral kitten.  The food had been disappearing out of the trap daily, we suspect it took a couple of weeks for the kitten to weigh enough to spring the trap.


Kate closed him in her bathroom for the night with some food, water, and a litter box, then went to work.      

In the morning, when she came home, she took him to her veterinarian, in anticipation of taking him to the Humane Society.  The vet pronounced him free of fleas and mites, healthy but underweight, and estimated his age as eight to ten weeks.  The kitten was surprisingly calm and cooperative.

Kate took him home.  He would hiss and run when approached, but once picked up was a calm, snuggling, purring ball of fur. Kate's heart was melting, it was going to be difficult to take him to the Humane Society on her next day off.  She installed a baby gate to confine him to the bedroom and bathroom, put a collar with a bell on him, and let him out of the cat carrier.  (That's Gomez, the other side of the gate.)


She asked me to come visit, to socialize him.


Two days later he was suddenly close to death.  He stopped eating and drinking, grew lethargic, then limp, breathing shallow and very fast.  Kate rushed him back to the vet, who diagnosed him with a respiratory infection.  She injected him with antibiotics and had Kate keep him wrapped in a cool, wet washcloth to bring his fever down.  He was not expected to survive.

He rebounded quickly.  Then, in swift succession, there was another trip to the vet for fly larvae removal in two locations Kate found while washing him, then one of the wounds from the burrowed larvae got infected.  There were also tapeworms, then fleas.

After all that Kate decided he wasn't going anywhere.  She named him Milo, her little soldier.


By late September he was friends with Gomez, who is gregarious and loves to play, but Belle was still giving him the cold shoulder.


Now, several months later, Milo is truly healthy, happy, and part of the family.  He's wary of people other than Kate, which disappoints Daisie, Kate's best friend and frequent house guest, but Daisie is patiently making advances.  Last week he let her pet him, but only because he was sitting against Kate at the time.


Odds and ends and freezing

The English Cottage Kitchen is back in my studio to have its roof thatched.  This time I used a coir mat as a base and am gluing the coconut fibers over that.  It is a very messy job, and very burny ouchy, as I'm using a hot glue gun.


Before the holiday break I took my paint chips to the yarn store to purchase yarn in my new reno colors.  A friend turned the yarn into this...


It was supposed to be mainly teal but ended up mainly neutral because the teal and berry yarns were a slightly lighter weight than the neutrals.  I did know to check the labels to make sure they were the same there, but did not know to compare the actual yarns.  No matter, I love it, it looks fantastic in my living room, and it's long enough to cover my tall husband without his feet poking out the bottom.

I also got a hat, scarf, and stocking, because she was on a roll and bored.  Another co-worker got a hat too.

Nothing else has gone on in the home reno, and I feel a bit guilty for not stripping wallpaper in the dining room during Christmas break.  I would like to have that done before the spring, when it will get warm enough to paint again, but that's a few months away yet.  It's still freezing cold here...below freezing.  Brrr.


Have you ever received a much too large box from Amazon with only a couple small things in it and a ton of packing paper?  Ester loves it.  It's a playground wonderland.


I could make a life sized version of Nancy's yucca plant with all this paper.



vacation, acquisitions, and assorted goings-on

I am on vacation!  I don't have to be back in the office until January second.  Whoo-hoo!

I've got a few small projects lined up....


As executor of Charlene's miniature estate, I need to pack her fishing gear and send it to its new home.


I'm assembling a wee metal model kit.


Nancy sent me some play things.


I bought some feves from ValueARTifacts.  I can see this becoming somewhat of an addiction.


We have a new dining room table to assemble.  It was my husband's grandmother's kitchen table.  It is believed that my husband's grandfather made it for her, but we're not certain.  Matt's brother inherited it, but he died just after Thanksgiving.  He was in poor health and much pain, so his passing was a kindness, though we will miss him very much.


I have a new toy to play with.  Guthrie was a Christmas gift from a coworker.


I've finished designing the marker set and pencil case (I think).  Lots of math and spatial imagining were involved.  If they assemble as intended when I cut them out later today I'll do a happy dance.


Ester requires some extra attention.  Now that it's cold outside she's staying in, and she's a bit stir-crazy.  She'll be glad to have me home to play with and sleep on.  For additional lap-time I bought a set of books that were some of my favorites when I was a girl, The Borrowers.  Paper books, not e-books, because I can't relive a bit of my childhood with a reader app.  I've always thought I'd do a Borrrowers build, perhaps next year's contest kit will lend itself to the concept.

I hope you all enjoy the holiday season and get to spend some quality time with your loved ones.  Virtual hugs from me to you :)


renovation update #3

Wallpaper stripping is coming along slowly.  I got another little section of wall done.


Upon the advice of a professional colleague I bought a bottle of DIF wallpaper stripper.   All the home renovation TV shows that tell you fabric softener is the best stripper, that it's some kind of trade secret...they're lying, the lot of them.  

I bought new pulls for the kitchen cabinets.  I was going to buy new silver hinges to match the silver pulls, but couldn't find any that matched the hole pattern of my current hinges.  Then I took an SOS pad to the hinges and happily discovered they aren't brown, they're copper.  Yay!   I love copper, and it looks wonderful against the teal.

DSCN5423 (2)

I was all set last weekend to paint the rest of the cabinets, but then my direction was shifted.  Matt wants to bring his CD racks back into the house, and wants to move them from sitting side by side to the left of the door to sitting one atop the other behind the door.  He brought the first rack inside, looked at the wall, then me, and said "Oh.  I suppose I have to wait until you've painted there first, don't I?"

Since it doesn't matter what order the painting is done in, as long as it gets done, I spent last weekend painting one end of the living room.


I was going to replace the closet doors, because of the gap at the bottom, but then I priced new closet doors.  Outrageous!  I decided to live with the gap, and painted the doors the same color as the wall.  I bought new silver nickels levers to replace the old brass knobs, and will most likely replace the hinges too.

Over the course of the workweek my brain got stuck in a loop of whether to finish the contest miniature or work on the life-sized reno.  Which is more important, one has a deadline, what if I focus on one during the week and the other on the weekend, etc, etc, etc.  I finally decided that I am going to wake up each morning, ask myself what I want to work on that day, then do that.

Yesterday morning I wanted to paint the worn, flat black dresser that sits in the entry before I roll it back against the new walls and floor.  That's what I did.  She looks smart.  I bought new knobs with a deeper projection because Matt had worn the paint off the front of the drawer behind the knobs.  She needs one more coat of polycrylic on the top then can roll back into place.


There was much conversation yesterday, between coats of paint, about Matt's CD racks.


I understand why he wants to move them, they aren't very functional sitting behind the end table, and will be less accessible once I add a lamp to that table.  They won't fit side by side behind the door, and if one is cut down so they can sit one atop the other he'll lose two shelves, which means he will have to pare down his collection a bit, but, worse than that, I pointed out, it leaves no room for growth.   Possible other solutions were discussed, and it was decided he will make a new rack to fit the space, in the same manner he built the rack in the kitchen.  We are also discussing lighting options so that he can see the CDs, but have yet to reach agreement on that solution.

This is the kitchen rack he built for me a few years ago when I couldn't find a functional microwave stand that was also attractive.  It is made from threaded steel rod, nuts, washers, rubber feet, and stained furniture grade pine.  It has proven perfectly functional, and is extraordinarily adjustable.  When I bought Bob the roomba I had Matt raise the bottom shelf an inch so Bob can fit under it to clean.


Matt is out in the garage building the new rack now.  I should take him a glass of water, it's very hot today.  Ester and I are inside enjoying the air conditioning.




on hiatus

I'm busy, busy, busy with real-life-size house goings on.

The new windows and doors are being installed next week.

The week after that new flooring is going in every room except my studio and the bathroom.

Next month, I think, or maybe in October, the new roof goes on.

Sometime in the next few weeks the tree guys are coming to remove a large pine and trim all the other trees.  I'd like to have that done before the roofers come.

This past weekend I got all the garden art picked up and put away for the winter, and removed the glass bottle and rusty gears border from my shade garden, as it was under four pines that are getting trimmed.   I don't want the tree guys to get hurt.

Next on my to-do list is to pack up everything in all the rooms of my house except large furniture and the contents of my kitchen cupboards, to stow away in my studio and the garage, so that the flooring guys can do their thing.  I also need to take down all the window treatments for the window guys.

Busy, busy, busy.  I'll see you guys again in a few weeks.

A gratuitous cat picture, to tide you over.  This is Milo, my daughter's newest; I'll tell you his story later.




Ester update

It looked, last Friday and Saturday, as if Ester were getting over her cold.  Sunday she was worse, yesterday she was absolutely miserable....so much snot she was gagging on it every time she had a sneezing fit.  We took her to her doctor, who diagnosed an upper respiratory infection and prescribed an antibiotic.

All she wants to do is lay on me and rest.  Every time I shift she meows in complaint and gives me the evil eye.  She's very cranky when she's sick. 


She is still eating and drinking as usual; she isn't running a fever, and isn't dehydrated.  The doctor says she should be back to her purry self in a week.