Tagged: kitties

I’m still alive. Barely.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011 -- 1:00 am


Seriously though?  The combination right now of school, homework, and working part-time is all kinds of unpleasant.

I spend my entire day walking around in a constant state of fretful anxiety, worrying and strategizing on how I'm going to get the current class assignment finished and how little time there is to finish all of the rest of the assignments following afterward.  It's not that I'm doing bad in my classes -- I am, in fact, doing pleasantly well grade-wise -- but trying to stay on top of my course load and maintain my marks while at the same time not completely neglect the rest of my life is becoming... problematic.  I think we can all agree that I hit an especially low point last week which involved me having a mini meltdown while cleaning the kitchen at 10 p.m.  Let me explain: in our house, the chores are split up and one of my jobs is washing the dishes.  It's pretty safe to say that for the past two months since I started school, the dishes have not been clean.

"Why can't I do the dishes?!" *Sob sob sob* "Why can't I even keep on top of something *sob sob* as simple as keeping the kitchen clean?!" *Sob hiccup sob*

True story.  Somewhat pathetic (and hilarious in hindsight,) but true.

I know I'm not the only one in my class suffering from a severe case of November burnout, and it's a little bittersweet to think that there's only nine days until I escape for a much-needed week away in the Caribbean.  On the one side, YAY VACATION YAY OMGINEEDTHISSOBAD.  On the other side, I now have even more assignments I need to get finished before next Thursday to make up for the time I'll be away.  As it stands, I will already be bringing a backpack full of school work with me on the ship.  Nothing dampens a day at port in the Bahamas like spending it in your stateroom doing homework.  :P

All right, no more whining now.  Suck it up, princess.  *Brushes the angst off her clothes*

In other somewhat belated news, Toby finally has his glass door!  It's fantastic.  Toby once again gets to see what's going on outside his room, we get some natural light in our hallway again, and Iroh gets hours of endless entertainment and frustration.  Everyone wins.

It is, at times, hard to physically pry the cat away from this spot now.

Jot note July.

Sunday, July 31, 2011 -- 4:22 pm

Haven't posted in a while.  July in a nutshell:

  • We suffered a minor crisis as an indirect result of installing our new dishwasher, when we woke up the following morning to discover that we had sprung a rather frightening leak in our basement ceiling from a pipe under our kitchen floor.  Luckily Mason and his father Bob the Builder'ed it up and managed to patch up the pipe within the day, and we spent the next week with fans cranked up full force up in the roof and on the floor to avoid any possible mold or water damage.  Things are now more or less fixed and back to normal other than the giant three foot hole still in our ceiling.
  • Last weekend we had an unexpected kitty-shaped visitor camp out with us for an evening.  We found the young cat out in our backyard, unneutured, with no collar or tattoos, so I set him up with some food and water, a bed, and litterbox in the garage over night until the Humane Society opened up the next day.  I figure he was a house escapee rather than a stray, considering how openly friendly and affectionate he was, but I went around ringing doorbells that morning and no one recognized his photo.  He was so sweet, he liked to headbutt and nuzzle you in the face, being all "LOOK AT HOW ADORABLE I AM! SUBMIT ALL YOUR LOVES TO ME, MUH HA HA!"  I hope he was claimed by his family, if he had one, or gets adopted by someone nice.  *Hugs him*
  • Sister and I had a Harry Potter: Deathly Hallows 2 movie date!  Both halves of this last movie were surprisingly awesome for a change, a really nice wrap up to a sadly lackluster movie franchise (with the exception of the epilogue which, trust me, is just as awful in movie form as it was in the book, only now you actually get too see Ron's thirty-year-old beer gut and Malfoy's hilarious facial hair.)  I liked that they ramped up the castle battle to be a bit more epic, though I was pretty choked that they cut out Fred's death scene; also sad that they hardly touched at all on Dumbledore's backstory.  On the other hand, as much as I've been a long time hater of Alan Rickman's portrayal of Snape, he really redeemed himself a bit in this one.  He finally abandoned the whole campy Capt Kirk line delivery and the over-the-top billow genie moves for some actual acting in parts for a change.  I've never been a fan at all of the Snape/Lily ship, but I gotta say that I sobbed like a giant goober during the scene where he finds her dead in Godric's Hollow, and afterward when he's lamenting to Albus.  ;_;  Oh yeah, and btw, McGonagall?  She's hilarious.  Trust me.
  • Only one month until I go back to school.  It's a little pathetic how even at the age I am now that one of the parts I get most excited for about returning to college university (MacEwan would insist on accuracy) is the prospect of new school supplies, especially when you consider that school supplies for my program pretty much consist of maybe a binder, paper, and a handful of pens.  Don't get me wrong, I'm looking forward to the classes themselves, and the concept of graduating in two years and being able to secure a career I'm actually passionate about is obviously appealing, but some how that package of brand new blue Bic ballpoints makes me positively squirm with glee every time I walk by the office supply aisle at work.  Yes, it's absurd, I know.
  • On the note of school and library careers, I applied for a (very) part-time page position at the St. Albert Public Library this week which I'm hoping my volunteer cred will score me first dibs at.  Even a few hours a week of legitimate library work would be great for my resume and maybe open up some opportunities for something full-time.  Please cross your fingers for me!  >_<

“A home without books is a body without soul.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Saturday, June 4, 2011 -- 10:14 pm

Almost two months worth of reading to catch up on!  D:  I may just recap the first half of them now and do the rest later, we'll see how I'm feeling as I go.

  • Disgrace by J.M. Coetzee
    Set in South Africa, a middle-aged divorced English professor is discovered to be having a sexual relationship with one of his students.  Instead of apologizing and trying to save his job, he leaves his career and city to stay with his daughter out on a remote farm she owns, attempting to reconcile a strained father-daughter relationship that is tested even more so when they are victims of horrible violence.  The story wasn't really what I expected at all, ending up being much more about the relationship between him and his daughter than the aftermath of the scandal at all like I was expecting.  It was a slow, tolling read at times, with too much of what I like to call "flowery" literary writing (he is an English professor after all.)  Meh.  2/5
  • Unbearable Lightness by Portia de Rossi
    Model and actress Portia de Rossi's self-written unflinchingly honest and complex personal memoir recounting her public rise to fame while privately battling anorexia and coming to terms with her closeted sexual identity.  This was a great book, I finished it within 24 hours of picking it up from the library.  Portia is a wonderful writer, and the skill and truth in which she delves into the emotions and behaviors of individuals suffering from eating disorders is at times all together inspiring, amusing, and occasionally shocking.  If you like autobiographies, this is a good one; if you don't, then I'd still recommend it to you anyway.  5/5
  • The Gunslinger (The Dark Tower, #1) by Stephen King
    The first book in King's well known and highly praised Dark Tower series, set in world that combines sci-fi, fantasty, horror, and western elements; introducing the character of Roland Deschain, the last gunslinger, as he pursues an evil nemesis known as the man in black.  I had high hopes for this one... but I'm sorry, it was just too weird.  That's all I can really say about it.  By the end of the book I still didn't fully understand what was going on or who the characters were or what they were trying to do.  Maybe it's all explained more in the following books?  I don't know, but I can't honestly say I'm motivated to read further on in the series to find out at this point.  2/5
  • The Clan of the Cave Bear (Earth's Children, #1) by Jean M. Auel
    Set over 35,000 years ago, 5-year-old Ayla finds herself suddenly orphaned and homeless after her family is killed in an earthquake.  She ends up being taken in by a clan of Neanderthals, a tribe of people both very ideologically and physically different from her own, and as she grows up her presence in the clan is the start of a brutal and dangerous power struggle.  Very enjoyable story IMO.  Interesting characters and fascinating settings and cultures were explored through out.  Being set in the Ice Age it goes without saying that females have little to no social status or rights in this book, a fact that the author repeatedly bludgeons into the readers head to the point of making any woman cringe; however, it serves an important purpose in Ayla's coming-of-age story.  I highly recommend this one.  4/5
  • Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes
    A popular high school English class novel about a mentally disabled man named Charlie Gordon who becomes a genius through a experimental operation.  The writing style of the book is interesting in that it's written entirely from Charlie's point of view and so the first third of the story is a maze of grammatical errors and spelling mistakes and somewhat confusing trains of thought, all of which slowly corrects and reorients itself as the story progresses and the effects of the operation set in.  The book was originally set in the 60's and so there's a lot of very derogatory terms and treatment directed towards disabled individuals here, so readers beware.  Overall, it was all right.  Mostly, I found the story just very sad.  3/5
  • Beauty: A Retelling of the Story of Beauty and the Beast by Robin McKinley
    I love this book!  As I said in an earlier post, Beauty is a retelling of the classic Beauty and the Beast tale, one that I greatly enjoyed when I checked it out repeatedly from my junior high library and still enjoy now.  It contains the perfect amount of magic and romance (but not the corny, make-me-heave kind in your typical romance novel) paired with what I believe is a great take on the Belle a.k.a. Beauty character.  If not for the somewhat lukewarm exposition-filled wrap up at the ending this novel would have earned a five star rating in my books, but even despite that it's a strong 4/5.

That's all for now.  There's still five more books waiting to have some quick summaries and reviews written up for them but I'll include them on a later blog entry.  (You see?  This is what happens when I procrastinate.  The list grows too long and tedious to tackle in one single post.  I must stop being so lazy and post them as I finish reading each book.)

Another con of being back to working full time again: less time to read.  :c  The kitty and I had a good little ritual going where each morning after breakfast I'd read for an hour or two while he cuddled on my lap.  Now Iroh meows sadly as he watches me walk out the door each morning and I try to squeeze in a few pages any chance I get on my breaks at work.  Let me tell you, the break room at work is sadly lacking cuddly cats.  *Sigh*

Careful, I think I’m contagious.

Sunday, March 27, 2011 -- 11:41 pm

Someone from on high atop the cosmic plain of germy doom has seen fit to ladle me up a helpful heaping of sickness this past week.  For the past four days I've been stumbling around the house in my pajamas in a zombie-like (and extremely sexy) state of non-stop sneezing, coughing, achy, shivering dizziness.  I've been popping Cold FX and the occasional Advil Cold & Sinus to make me coherent just long enough to finish up some contract work I had to do this weekend, but other than that I've been fairly horizontal.  My throat feels like a particularly vicious cat has clawed its way up out of it and taken a good chunk of my vocal cords along with it, and I've spent most of the last 96 hours curled up in a nest of blankets under the mistaken delusion that if I sleep long enough this cold bug will just get bored and leave me alone and find a different hapless victim.  (No luck so far with that.)

To make matters worse I think I've unintentionally passed my havoc-wreaking germs to Mason, a feat neither of us can comprehend, since it's been a long-standing ritual in our house that Mason refuses to come anywhere near me, much less touch me with a ten-foot pole when I'm sick with anything for fear of catching it.  Though personally I blame this plague on him in the first place -- he was the one that was sick a couple weeks ago.  His residual ninja-like germs must have been hiding somewhere in the house all this time, biding their time until they could let loose with their terror once more; and now the two of us will be forever cursed to pass them back and forth between one another again and again until we both finally succumb to sicky death and are buried side-by-side in matching antibacterial face masks; or until wild dogs break into the house while we are too weak to fend them off and are found by the authorities days later nibbling on the remains of our pale, pasty toes.  (Don't trust Iroh and Toby either -- their love only goes as far as their bellies.  Once they realized regular meals were no longer forthcoming, don't think they wouldn't join the dogs in picking the clammy flesh from our bones!)

I'm crossing my fingers that the worst is over and hoping tomorrow will finally mark a turn for the better.  I suppose it's a small blessing that we're both getting the whole cold thing done with and out of our systems now and not right before the wedding.  *Knock on wood*  Excuse me while I go swallow more drugs now and crash in my bed once again, but not before I board up all of the doors and windows against any roaming packs of savage canines.  ...And lock the cat and rabbit up in the bathroom.  ...Just as a precaution.  *Iroh and Toby exchange shifty glances.*

EHS Volunteering

Saturday, September 11, 2010 -- 2:11 pm
Mood: 07 Warm and fuzzy inside

This morning I attended a orientation session for new volunteers at the Edmonton Humane Society. It's actually the second one I've gone to in the last year or two, but after the first one I never heard anything back from them on how to proceed to the next step, so I'm not sure if I got lost in the fray some where down the line or what. Luckily this time around seemed much more organized and I walked out happily at the end with a yellow EHS volunteer shirt and everything~

The lady from the EHS (who has also served as an EMT) who headed the session started it off by talking a little about her time in New York several years back, and how she was there the day of and helped out during the events of 9/11. She showed us some of her own pictures that she'd taken during and after the attacks, as well spoke about and showed us photos of some of the animal rescue units that assisted in the aftermath; like how the search and rescue dogs were transported across the rubble and debris. Also how in addition to the typical medium to large sized breeds that you usually see with emergency crews, 9/11 had a lot of tiny miniature dogs like poodles and terriers working with the team as well since they could get into so many smaller spots than the rest of of the search and rescue animals. It was really interesting to hear about.

I chose to sign up for the EHS cat socialization volunteer program (you had the option between cats and dogs), so I'm going in for a mentoring session for that on Tuesday. In passing the staff also asked who of us had any experience with smaller mammals like rabbits (I think there was only two of us in the whole room), so I'm arranging another much smaller session to cover that so I can volunteer with both.

I love the EHS, they're such a wonderful organization with the nicest facility and staff. I've wanted to help out some way with them for the longest time. So excited~ :3

Who the hell do you think I am? I’m the Goddamn Batman!

Sunday, September 5, 2010 -- 11:58 pm
Mood: 06 Triumph!

OMG, I BEAT ARKHAM ASYLUM ALL BY MYSELF! :B Sure, I had it on easy mode and it's taken me over a month to trudge through it, but I totally did it without handing the controller over even once! For anyone who knows what a crappy excuse for a gamer I am, this is a fairly big deal. I only have two big complaints about the game:

  1. For a game that is so ridiculously gorgeous and highly detailed in design, it's pretty ridiculous that you spend practically all of your time in Detective Mode and don't even get to enjoy any of the eye-candy.
  2. The final boss battle against the Joker is just plain disappointing. It was probably one of the easiest fights in the entire game (and I use the term "fight" loosely, considering you hardly even take a swing at Mister J and spend the entire time fighting henchmen instead) especially compared to Ivy, who I died six times with much swearing and gnashing of teeth before I managed to beat.

In any event, it has been the highlight of my lackluster gaming career to date, and I'm super excited for the sequel, Arkham City, to come out in 2011. Catwoman and Two-Face and even more Joker, oh my!

Iroh went in for his annual checkup and it turns out he really is getting a tad tubby. All this time I thought the extra weight was just the whole second year "filling out" stage that cats apparently go through. *Sweatdrop* The doctor says he should loose around 1/2 - 1lb, so in an effort to not end up with a rolly-polly kitty, I'm cutting back on his wet food in the evenings. *Iroh is very sad*

While we were in at the clinic, I also took the chance to ask the vet about how to put on the Soft Claw nail caps. (Iroh has been caught one too many times scratching at our sofa downstairs, and certain individuals were two whiskers away from having a conniption.) The caps were easy enough to apply (though I have no doubt that next time I try it by myself Iroh will fight me to the bitter end), and they seem to work pretty well. Other than visibly wigging him out when he walked anywhere for the first day of having them on, they don't appear to bother him much at all -- aside from any regrettable injury to his kitty pride he may bear, that is. Sometimes he'll shake his paws in annoyance and give me such a dirty look, like I've betrayed a sacred trust or something.

Poor Iroh. Vet visits, dieting, and no more scratching at the furniture. It's been a bad week for him. ^^;

Update on the kitchen renovations! And by that I mean that we've scrapped the kitchen reno idea for the time being (we're going to wait until we have more money to burn for that big project), and instead we've sort of -- and almost entirely by accident -- decided to redo the upstairs bathroom. What started as an outing to buy a new toilet seat turned into a new shower curtain, which in turn escalated into new bathmats, towels, and paint to match the new shower curtain, and has ended up with us buying a new vanity from Jysk and light fixtures and shopping around for the best deal on floor and wall tile. We haven't even done any of the big changes yet and already it's looking so much prettier! I'll post before and after pictures when we get it finished~