Dec 2, 2015

For Lin...

Lin  is feeling the stress of the season...

                         Merry make – they tell us all.
                         String the lights, deck the hall.
                         Bake the cookies, dress the tree
                         Like a Martha Stewart wanna-be.

                        I 've no time for all of that -
                        Stress at work, the kids, the cats.
                        All these years – it's gotten old,
                        But it's tradition! – so I'm told. 

                       “Where's the trains? Where's the holly?
                       Why so grumpy, just be jolly”
                        That is what I hear each day.
                        But oh if I could have my way…

                        I'd simply hang the mistletoe,
                        Pour a drink and Let It Go!


Nov 29, 2015

Getting Dusty Around Here...

I truly hate to dust; I hate housework in general, except maybe laundry; I like laundry.  Anyway,  the best I can do, to replace the dust on this blog is...Ta Da! Kitty pics...


Nov 16, 2015

Itchy Brain

Miss Frankie is definitely a little more cuckoo than usual today. When I got up this morning I noticed something white by the litter box, when I got close enough to see, it was her wand toy - half in/half out of the litter box. Then after her morning nap(s) she decided to bat around a crinkle ball, down the hall and almost in to the litter box.  She's been running around the house, yapping and yelling all morning. I posed the rhetorical question, 'What is with her today?" and my husband replied "She has itchy brain".

I think she would like someone to play with, I think BB would like someone to play with and they sure as hell will not play with each other. For years Zeke was the cat in the middle - Frankie and BB loved him. I don't think Frankie knew she didn't like BB until Zeke passed on. Then it was whoa - who is this other cat? I don't like him.

We have very needy cats - we call them velcro cats - we've always had velcro cats - they must be attached to a human being at all times - even tho Frankie won't sit in a lap she will demand to be petted 24/7.  BB is blissfully happy lap lounging - it's all he wants from life - besides food!

What is to be done for Miss Frankie today - we offered water, treats, toys, pets - she took them all and still she is wandering around mewing, chirping, trilling and yelling.

If only I could speak cat.

Nov 12, 2015

I suppose you want to know

how it all turned out. My husband won the seat on the board. Three candidates, he came in second.  They have some crazy way to tally votes - everything in a condo is a percentage of something else. There were (approximately) 97 ballots/proxies cast out of a 249; incumbent got 90 point something percent; my husband got 63 point something percent; 3rd candidate got 41 point something percent - I have no idea how they figure things out. Every apartment/unit is a voting entity and also has a number of shares - each unit is one vote but maybe they use the shares amount to figure out the percentages - I have not a clue.

Three hours of: sitting on a folding chair, wandering around, standing, left me crippled up on Wednesday. I could barely take a shower. It hurt if I stood, if I sat, if I lay down. Pain is so exhausting and it just makes you feel ill all over.

I sent my husband downstairs to pick up my package (the joys of having a concierge, you never have to worry about being around to sign for deliveries) and he came back laughing, a bit ruefully, about all his 'new' friends. This is the first time we have lived in a place where he is the known person instead of me. I am so okay with that.

I often say that I write they way I talk and that was brought home to me when I spoke at the meeting - a simple statement turned into an animated story...it seems I can't just say something or answer a question without launching into a descriptive narrative. I have to stop that - I talk too much, mostly because I rarely talk to anyone except my husband and the cats.  Being so isolated from human contact on a regular basis has turned me into a desperate conversationalist when I encounter actual people.

I need to get a keyboard cover for my iPad. I could have accomplished more yesterday if I could have stayed in bed and still have been able to interact via computer and internet. I do not understand how people type anything on those ridiculous mobile device keyboards.

Thanksgiving is soon, remember Eat Dessert First!

Nov 6, 2015

9AM

Fog is an unusual occurrence here, especially when it lingers until 9 AM....



Then I got all artsy-fartsy with one of the photos...


(Click to biggify)

Oct 31, 2015

Oct 28, 2015

My tree


And can you stand another picture of my beloved tree? Every morning it looks more grand than the morning before. It's changing right before my eyes. I love my tree...


Oct 27, 2015

Slowly...

they turn, leaf by leaf, green to red and gold...


Oct 19, 2015

And here is why I won't be getting any work done this morning

I parked my butt in my chair and guess where Miss Frankie parked her butt ...

I did get her off the keyboard so then you draped herself over my right arm...still no work getting done.

Oct 18, 2015

Getting Older

For All The Girls
Author Unknown

When I was in my younger days,
I weighed a few pounds less,
I needn't hold my tummy in
To wear a belted dress.

But now that I am older,
I've set my body free;
There's comfort of elastic
Where once my waist would be.

Inventor of those high-heeled shoes
My feet have not forgiven;
I have to wear a nine now,
But used to wear a seven.

And how about those pantyhose-
They're sized by weight, you see,
So how come when I put them on
The crotch is at my knees?

I need to wear these glasses
As the print was getting smaller;
And it wasn't very long ago
I know that I was taller.

Though my hair has turned to grey
And my skin no longer fits,
On the inside, I'm the same old me,
Just the outside's changed a bit.

Oct 17, 2015

Oct 12, 2015

It's in front of me, it's behind me...

Sunday night I put my computer to sleep and adjusted my monitor completely vertical. As I was turning away to get out of my chair I saw this reflected on the monitor screen...


And this is what is being reflected...

How cool is that?

Oct 6, 2015

What caught my attention today


 Do they have these signs where you live? Has anyone ever
determined if pushing this button has any affect on the traffic signal?  Or are they just there to placate the pedestrians - give a sense that you are some how in control. Well you're not - in control. And you can slap that puppy till your hand hurts - that light isn't going to change any sooner. 
 And then there is this -

I mentioned somewhere that I wasn't going to rag on the annual pumpkin madness -  but I didn't promise that I wouldn't share other people's despair.

Oct 2, 2015

Aww, poor kitty...

I was eating a turkey sandwich, BB was looking pathetic...


Sep 30, 2015

Sep 22, 2015

Well break my jaw and call me broken jaw...

I have two cats. I do almost all my shopping on-line ergo there is a steady stream of boxes into my home. Cats are supposed to like boxes - a lot. My two cats could not care less if they tried.  Until yesterday. For the first time ever in their lives (which span 11 and 9 years), I give you BB and Frankie in a box.

I moved the box to the side of the room and when BB came back from having a snack he found...

There was much hissing and growling from Miss Frankie who had quickly appropriated the box. BB had the good sense to just walk away...

Sep 19, 2015

This is my life...

or rather my nights...

(Click to biggify...)

Sep 18, 2015

Rockabye Kitty

When my husband naps in his recliner Miss Frankie lies on his midriff and as he breathes Frankie goes up and down with each inhale/exhale.  This seems to lull her to sleep - rockabye kitty. It always makes me laugh to watch this and yes, I find it strangely soothing too...

Sep 14, 2015

Funny position



Catch that rear leg sticking out.  BB's paw, instead of being stretched out and relaxed, is flexed, like he is trying to keep from sliding .  I laugh every time he lies like this - if I tilted the photo to the left it would look like he is climbing up the rug...I just think it's funny.

Sep 12, 2015

What?!

Do you have a cat that talks all the time? And do you find yourself saying "What?!" all the time?

Miss Frankie Lulu Belle is a non-stop communicator. She has something to say about everything and most of the time I know what she is talking about; so much so that my husband will ask me to translate. But there are times when I haven't a clue and I just keep saying over, and over "What do you want Frankie? What do you need? What, What?"

Most of the time I am reading her body language rather than her howls, yowls and meows.  In the afternoon she and my husband nap in bed. When he gets up she often stays napping but then when she wakes up...she STOMPS into the living room bitching and complaining "You left me alone!"  There is the particular meow for "Don't touch me there!" and a different one for "I'm thirsty, I want water!"  And yes, she does use a lot of exclamation points.

BB, on the other hand, rarely speaks or rather, squeaks.  For big boy he has this tiny high pitched voice which always makes me laugh. You'd expect a big booming sound from a such a big boy.  He's a little dim - at night when the lights go out in the living room, and my husband is in bed and I am in my office, he howls in his little voice because he's all alone! I call out to him that I'm in the office and he quiets right down. He does this every night.  He will squeak when he wants food but only when dinner is late, or when the dishes have been picked up.  "The food is gone, the food is gone!" Well, you know the kitty dishes have to be washed, as well as the floor.  I suppose it is a comfort to him just to know they are there even if he isn't hungry.

But mostly BB is a big old lover-bunny. A happy cat with no real complaints. All he wants is a nice lap to nap on..
 

Aug 31, 2015

You simply cannot take a bad picture

of an orange cat. And then because you get so many great shots you can play with them to your hearts content and not care if an original gets lost in the shuffle.  First I did this...


And then I did this..


Aug 5, 2015

Wordless Wednesday

Squirrel in the treetop
(Click pic to biggify...)

Aug 1, 2015

Caturday Art

(If you click to biggify you can see the details of his eyes better - and you know how much I love cat's eyes)

Join the Caturday Blog Hop over at Athena and Marie's

Jul 27, 2015

What a sweet little thing

I was going through my old writings and some of it scared me. I don't know who that person is but I am very afraid for her.  I weep for her.

But I did find a very sweet thing - I shall type it out because I don't think it will scan very well.  Have no idea when I wrote it - teens, 20's? - or why I wrote it.
~ ~ ~ ~

"It seemed as if I had come home; home to a place I'd never been before. The very air embraced me, the wind kissed me on both cheeks, the street lamps smiled and bade me welcome back.

As I walked the streets alone, shadows that seemed old friends nodded shy hellos, as if they couldn't quite remember the name but the face brought back kind memories. . And the swirling mists danced all around me, eager to hear the tales of where I'd been, like children begging treats.

Shop bells called out their invitations; they had waited so long for me, had so much to show me, and delight me. Little precious things they just knew I would like. It was so kind of them. Tomorrow I shall come and see the treasures, this night is given to memories"

(Oh the mad compulsion to edit but I resisted. I did break up the paragraphs but left everything else the same.)

Jul 22, 2015

From the archives

Time: 1961
Place: High School creative writing class
(Click to biggify for easy reading)
(In case you are wondering - 64-325-E  is my graduation year, my home room # and I have no idea what the E stands for - English?)



Jul 18, 2015

Perception Disconnect




Because
         the windows are closed tight
         and the sky is grey and dreary
         and it is chilly inside
         and I am wearing a sweater
         my mind registers ‘Winter’
                  in July.
Perception Disconnection.



(© Grace St. Clair July 2015) 

Jul 14, 2015

My little furry friends

I love squirrels. When I was a leetle kid we had a pet squirrel. He lived in our yard and we would hand feed him nuts. Me and squirrels just have a thing for each other, I have so many wonderful stories about me and them.

Thanks to Vanilla, I know that the tree outside my window is a Japanese dogwood which produces berries, that when ripened to a bright red, are edible by humans.  I never got to taste them last year because the lower branches were picked clean by the birds and the squirrels.  And quite frankly I forgot all about trying them till they were all gone.

Yesterday I noticed one of my squirrel friends sampling the unripe berries...I could watch these little critters all day.



Jul 8, 2015

What is it about

watching a loved one sleep that makes your heart just about burst with emotion?

I know you folks with children crept into your child's room in the middle of the night to gaze at their sleeping face. And you were filled with such overwhelming emotion it near brought you to tears. Or it actually did.

Perhaps you have awoken in the middle of the night and turned to look at your partner, resting there beside you, and reached out to softly touch their face, and there was that heart-filled feeling.

And then there are our pets...something about watching them sleep, all soft and quiet and peaceful.

Maybe that's it - in sleep those we love are at peace. They are safe and under your protection. And you want to want to keep them that way - safe, peaceful, and loved.

Jul 7, 2015

This makes me squee

Don't you just melt when they sleep like this? And that little foot sticking out? Just turns me into a puddle...


Jun 26, 2015

The Pink House

One photo, narrated by me.


(You may have to turn up the volume. Since there is nothing to see, open a new window/tab and listen while you do something constructive.)

Jun 22, 2015

The Bees

I enjoy the funny funky photo editors but I really like tinkering with a straight out photo editor that enhances the pics I take with my Mickey Mouse camera.  I've had Photoshop Elements on my computer but it never worked properly and Adobe is supposed to be super compatible with MACs.

My go-to photo editors are Snapseed, iPiccy and PicMonkey.  Snapseed is on my computer and I paid $10 for it. iPiccy is on-line and free, with PicMonkey I paid for the upgrade to Pro.

This photo was edited in PicMonkey:


And this is the original:

The edit was supposed to give the photo more depth using their focus blur tool. I'm not too sure it succeeded but the edited photo is way better.

(If you click on the photos you should see a larger version)

Jun 10, 2015

Such good news

I don't think I talk much about our health challenges but I did post about my husband's recent Type 2 diabetes diagnosis.

Today he had his first follow-up visit with the endocrinologist and she was blown away by his numbers. They were that good.

In just 6 weeks his A1C went from 11.1 to 7.4 - that is phenomenal. He is taking 2 medications and she has reduced one of them - so he is taking the minimal amount of medication.

He has been doing a finger prick 3 times a day and the doctor said he can reduce that to 2 a day.

His cholesterol, both good and bad, has gone down. It was in the high normal range and now it is in the mid normal range.  Even with that, the doctor mentioned statins and my husband passed on them.

His glucose reading has spiked low, within range but low, several times and the doctor wants to avoid that.  So I have to make sure he has some carbohydrates with every meal. Some of our meals don't include any at all.

On the negative side he has gained 2 pounds - he is now 208 but keep in mind he is 6'6" tall - 208 pounds isn't overweight for him.  Unfortunately those 2 pounds are all in his tummy and his upper body still looks a bit gaunt.

Aside from eliminating sweets, my husband's real true love,  I haven't changed our eating habits much. My husband is actually eating MORE than he did before the diabetes diet adjustments.

I'm glad we have been eating more vegetables and we have the carb counting down to a science - it really hasn't been hard at all.

My husband's only sad - traditionally I make my fabulous chocolate cake for his birthday - this year the tradition must die. 

I've got to find a diabetic friendly dessert cookbook - my husband needs a little reward, dontcha' think?

Jun 8, 2015

Some kitty loves the

sun and hates the camera...


Jun 1, 2015

Or maybe that's just me

Libras are mediators. they are always trying to find the middle ground, the balance. Sometimes, most times, their own - in themselves, of themselves.

Or maybe that's just me.

I don't know what astrology says about the duality of Gemini, the twins, but I do know that Libras have a lock on duality/dichotomy.  Maddeningly quixotic and damnedably pragmatic.

Or maybe that's just me.

Libras are not originally creative. Give a Libra a blank piece of paper and a pencil, come back 2 hours later and you will find them still sitting with a blank page and a pencil.

But give a Libra a piece of paper with one dot on it; one squiggle; one smear or bit of schmutz; one word, and a pencil, then come back 2 hours later and you will find the room knee deep in paper, filled with colors, pictures, ideas, poems perhaps even the Great American Novel.

Or maybe that's just me.

Libras are mediators. I mediated this...

(Image from HERE. Quote as noted)

May 27, 2015

Glossary for my many brains

Pin Ball Brain: This is the slowest of my brains. Also the one that makes the most sense, in the long run. A thought crosses my mind and I sit with it. Explore it. It makes me think of something else that might or might not be related. I explore that. It reminds me of another topic - related, maybe. Eventually, on a good day, the bits of thoughts and information stored away result in an Aha! moment. Connections made.

Skitter Brain: This is the fastest and makes no sense at all. A mental comment. Another mental comment. Neither has anything to do with the other. "It's warm in here. I really need a pedicure. Yellow is my favorite color.  I'd like to take a nap. What the hell am I going to make for dinner"
Skitter brain - no rhyme or reason. It happens most when I'm sitting still and just doing nothing.

Squirrel Brain: Half way between Pin Ball and Skitter.  Semi-intelligent mental note leads to another, somewhat related observation, which reminds me of something else entirely and then it's "Ohhh, shiny!"

Watch a squirrel sometime - "Oh, a nut - I'll eat it but wait there's another one, maybe I should get that one and put it away for later.  Wait, wait - I think I'll run up and down that tree for a while. Oh look, a nut"

Just thought you might want to know this - for future reference - in case it ever comes up again.

I'm hungry.

May 24, 2015

It's a process

The original...
 

First 'final' edit...

Second 'final' edit...

I didn't do much editing on these. I like to apply 'structure' and 'detail' and I use 'center focus' to highlight the eyes...BB has gorgeous eyes - oh hell, all cats have gorgeous eyes. It's hard to take a bad photo of BB.

As an added bonus, er, example, here is the original photo that I turned into Saturday's artsy-fartsy post

May 23, 2015

May 22, 2015

I am so deeply enamoured of this cat...

(Click on the photo for the full effect)