Hey Vernal!

Today is the first day of Spring, 2015. So it’s snowing.

It’s not a serious snow. It’s above freezing and the last time I looked (which was on my way into work) it was only sticking to the metal things and the grassy things. Streets and sidewalks were relatively clear.

Snow in spring isn’t completely unheard of in Maryland. My mom tells me that it snowed the day I was born (I’m an Aries) but was in the 80s (Fahrenheit) when she brought me home from the hospital. I’m not sure, but I think this means that either I’m a god or the spawn of Satan. Which, technically, would also be a god, but I digress.

Mom also tells me that there was snow on Mother’s Day one year.

Anyhow, it’s not unusual.

If I were a DJ, at this point, the opening beats of the Tom Jones song would be here.

What do you mean he don’t eat no meat?

So I went to Dunkin today and ordered their new breakfast sandwich. In the picture there’s bacon on it. So I said “Can I have [sandwich] with no meat?”

The counter girl said “That doesn’t come with meat. [pause] Oh, did you mean the bacon?”

…. I don’t know if that’s implying that Dunkin’s bacon isn’t actual meat, or if the girl doesn’t know that bacon is (usually) meat.

Oh Baby

I have online friends. I have a lot of online friends and many of them I’ve known for multiple decades. Sometimes they surprise me by reminding me that they’re actually real people and grown-up because they go and do things like have babies.

One friend is about halfway through her (what I assume will be (she loves kids)) first pregnancy. I’m taking the opportunity to knit baby things.

Like a hat.

(hat pattern)

Or feets.

(booties pattern)

The booties are cool. They look like weird platform shoes because they’re knit flat. But I’ve seen pictures where it’s pretty obvious they’re baby-foot-ish once there’s a foot in them. They’re for newborns, so they don’t need to be useful for walking and they need to be roomy for wiggling.

I like this. I can knit small things for people without ever having to risk actually being anywhere near a baby. Oh, and I suppose it’s a nice thing to do for a friend.

Conversations – Part 1

Scenario: Spent Saturday at the laundromat getting caught up with the clothes that couldn’t be washed due to the weather. All of mine were done. The partner-in-crime saved his for Sunday.
The partner-in-crime: (gathering his laundry, glances into my laundry basket) How do you have dirty clothes already?
Me: It’s the stuff I wore on Saturday.
The partner-in-crime: Damn your Earth logic!

Go Fish

I have had a freshwater fish tank nearly all of my life. It started with some guppies when I was really young and has progressed through various houses and setups. Not too long ago all of my fish died, save the plecostomus, who was enormous and continued to grow even when he was already too big for the tank. He eventually reached the point where he couldn’t turn around in the tank without coming out of the water, and then he died. He was about eight years old at that point, which is at the low end of average for these fish, but considering he was about 11 inches long and living in a 40 gallon tank, that was probably a good age. He really couldn’t have lived much longer or gotten much larger.

So stuff happened, I tried to get the tank going again, but then the filter died and I was left with one miserable little cory catfish trying to survive. I bought a new filter, changed 50% of the water, treated the tank with water conditioners, and let it cycle for about two days before I added new fish.

All but one of the new fish have died, and the cory is still going strong. I tested the water (which I realize I should have done before introducing the new fish) and the nitrate level is insanely high, the water is hard, and it’s very acidic. I keep trying to bring the acidity down and it’s improving, but it’s not there yet. I don’t know how to get the nitrates down any faster. I’m going to do another water change tomorrow and see if that helps at all.

The problem then is getting more fish. I don’t want to go back to the aquarium store and admit that I messed up and my fish died. I’m already riddled with guilt about not testing first and killing off five innocent mollies.

I don’t miss the gym

We haven’t been to the gym since before Thanksgiving. Kittiboi hurt himself on Thanksgiving (it involved the dog park and a very large rock) and as soon as he started feeling a little bit better from that it was finals and he was spending pretty much every waking moment studying, researching, and finalizing the papers that were due.

Now his semester is over and I’m on vacation from work and he thinks it’s time to go back to the gym.

Except I haven’t felt this good in a long time. I’m sleeping well, my mood’s marginally better, nothing hurts….

We’re gonna go back to the gym tomorrow. We’ll see what happens.

Tis The Season?

Finances have been a little bit strained here. Kittiboi’s schoolin’ is eating up available funds. There’s a link to our GoFundMe page over on the side. He’s got one more semester at the community college level and then it’s off to a four year school. We’ve got what we need for financial aid, but whether he gets it is still an unknown. So the holiday is going to be not exactly festive for us — not that it’s ever really festive, but this year we’re not really able to get anything for people. I probably shouldn’t have done the whole “knit everyone stuff” a few years ago, because that means it’s not an option this time around (except for my mom, who seems to be happy to get knit stuff whenever I have something she likes (unless she’s lying)).

The animals are doing well. Bab and JD, the cats we fostered over Thanksgiving, are still at the PetValu in Mt Vernon. They’ll come here for Christmas if they aren’t adopted by then. And I really hope they’re adopted by then because it’s getting harder and harder to resist them. Bab was mad at me today, but after a while decided he forgave me and we had a nice time snuggling. JD was just happy to see me. If we have to bring them back into this house it’s going to be impossible to send them away again and there is no way we can afford two more cats in this house, so please, people of Baltimore and surrounding areas, if you’re looking for two fantastic cats, go check them out. You can also contact me if you want more information about them.

Charlotte is still dealing with her acid reflux problem, but the medication seems to keep it mostly under control. Some days are better than others, and she’s still a tiny little thing (she’s still under 5 lbs and she’s over a year old), but it looks like we’ve gotten through the worst of it.

Owen has decided he wants to be Rita’s best friend. Rita is a cat that doesn’t like anyone or anything, so Owen’s plan seems to be “hang around with her as much as possible until she forgets she doesn’t like him.” It seems to be working. She doesn’t automatically hiss when she sees him, and she’ll even let him touch her a few times before getting upset. Owen, Charlotte, and Rita have all started sleeping near each other. Well. Owen and Charlotte regularly sleep on top of each other anyhow.

Charlotte’s also getting a little more tolerant of Cardiff. One day she’ll realize he’s made of Warm and that’ll be it. Of course that’ll be the same day Cardiff decides he’s had enough of her. He likes the chase.

Cardiff seems to be allergic to bananas. He has dehydrated banana chip dog treats and after he eats them he gets incredibly itchy. It’s so fantastic. My dog has my allergies. When they say pets and their people start to resemble each other, that’s probably not what they had in mind.

Me? I’ve got to make an appointment with an ENT because I have weird hearing. I can’t hear people when they’re standing right in front of me, yet I can hear conversations much further away. Farther? Whatever. It’s annoying and I’m probably irritating a lot of people by constantly saying “Sorry, I can’t hear you” over and over again. I’m not holding out much hope of anyone having an answer about the ear thing though. I tend to have problems that don’t make sense. This is what happens when you’re not actually from this planet.

And in case you’re wondering…. yes, I have a Wishlist.

Eight-by-Twelve Four-bit Room

Steeb-the-Roommate has basically moved out. Most of his stuff is still here until he and his future husband get a place with a lot of room. So there’s a big room in the house that’s not doing anything. Until this week.

Kittiboi and I both volunteer at BARCS. He does intake when his school schedule allows and I socialize cats. Mostly what we do is go to the Pet Valu on Charles Street to take care of the adoptable cats that live there.

The store is going to be closed for Thanksgiving. It’ll be one day only, but the cats get to go to foster homes for a few days. It gives them a chance to live outside their cage, get a little more peace and quiet, and it means that they won’t be left alone for 24 hours (and no one who works at the store has to go in on a holiday).

One cat has gone to fosters already. One of them has been at the store for almost two months and went early to get a nice, long break. There are two at the store now, and Kittiboi will pick them up on Wednesday. They’re a bonded pair, so they have to be kept together. Bab and JD will stay in Steeb’s room Wednesday to Sunday morning. They’ll get some time to sleep on Steeb’s bed, stretch their legs, and nap in the sun.

I know that right now mom’s out there, shaking her head and assuming we’ve just got two more cats. There is no chance we’ll keep them. Bab and JD aren’t a good fit for our house. This is just helping out because everyone who normally fosters is already full and doesn’t have the space for two more cats, even for a few days.

Our cats are not going to like this. But last time I checked, they weren’t paying the mortgage.

Anyhow, it’s nice to have Steeb’s room available to do this. It makes things a lot easier for all the other volunteers and the cats will enjoy it.