Thursday, August 25, 2011

Hey ya'll!
Vaca so far . Blogger would not post the link more cleanly.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Climb every... thing

Forget what they say. Send your inner child to its room and get in touch with your inner mountain goat. Its much more rewarding.

Thursday, August 18, 2011


I should go on vacation more often. I haven't been hateful in <i>days</i>! Today I saw a chipmonk and I didn't think "Oh,  a pretty rat". I thought "Oh! a Chipmonk!"

Friday, August 12, 2011

Out of Town not Out of Touch

I'll be back and forth, here and there but never far away.

Friday Cat Blogging

The purr-fect cat snack!

Big Daddy Watermelon

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The way back machine

<i>In theory, I have too much to do to properly write an entry. So to save time I thought I would pick a vacation themed entry from the past - a project that took roughly the same amount of time as writing a new one. From August of 2004, titled "A Skycap ate my Catby!", detiling my concerns with getting the late Kitty on a plane for free.</i>

Idea 1
Kitty as Baby - I have several varitions on this theme. Sadly they all call for a certain amount of sacrifice on the part of the kitty and I'm absolutely sure he is going to be interested in sacrifice. Sadly for Kitty, I am bigger and higher on the food chain. For Kitty this means

A - The wearing of a Onesy. And subsequent tail issues
B. The wearing of a baby bonnet
C. The wearing of baby mittens.
D. Riding in an umbrella style stroller.

I see all of these as very good ways to cover up the fact that I am carrying a cat through an airport. I'm pretty sure that a drugged Kitty trussed up in a onesy and covered with a blanket will look a lot like a baby or will at least look adequately baby shaped as to escape detection. It does call on him to sit and be still for an extended period of time, but that is why they invented Benadryl and why my vet told me to use it. I also seem to understand that baby stollers do not necessarily count as a carry on, they seem to get whisked away at the gate and then mysteriously reappear at the next airport. This is not fair to the childfree. If breeders can have there extra things conveniently whisked away and then conveniently returned, I think they can whisk away my luggage trolley and then conveniently make it reappear when I get where I'm going. I also think my cat should ride for free just like similarly sized baby. A whole people baby gets to ride free and not get stuffed under a seat, while Kitty they charge me out the ass for and then force me to shove him under a seat. Not Fair!.

Idea 2

Diana as Wheelchair Bound Traveler - True, it is wrong to play with wheelchairs and it is wrong to impersonate a handicapped person but if I was in a wheelchair I could have Kitty's crate balanced on my lap along with my carry on. I would be rolled through the airport at top speed and not have to worry about getting to my next flight. Kitty wouldn't be put out and no one would get banged around in transit. I'm not sure how closely the airlines check for actual wheelchair neediness. If they test you or anything, maybe they tape money to the floor and watch to see if you jump out of the chair real fast to go get it or if they watch to see how well you get around in the chair. What if I showed up limping and asked for a chair, would they just give me one? Or would I have to have a note or something? Anyway, this is a workable option.

Idea 3

Kitty as stuffed animal. In this option kitty doesn't have to do anything but be squishy and furry. He can do that. He would have to choke down, um a lot of Benadryl to make him adequately lifeless for the duration but I think we could work it out. All he would have to do is what he all ready does naturally - just lie there and do nothing! He could sleep soundly and appear to have no bone structure and no concern-able vital signs. He can do that! With his girth it can be very hard to tell if his heart is beating and he could also try not to breathe, much. If he does slip up and insist on showing signs of life, he could be a very good amatronic toy.

Anyone else have any better ideas?

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

The Family Watermelon

I harvested Mama melon over the weekend, so its just Dad and the kids left. They are all doing wellish.

Daddy watermelon. He might not <i>look</i> like a full grown melon but trust me, you would <i>not</i> want to run into <i>this</i> guy in a dark ally. Son is a <i>big</i> guy.

With Mama watermelon gone, big sis is the next largest. She's about the size of a junior soccer ball now.

This is baby brother melon. He's chortling along and gets bigger every day. Literally.

This is wee baby melon. I found this one the same day as baby brother melon. Wee baby does not seem to be growing at the same rate as baby brother or really at all any longer. I have serious doubts about wee baby melon. I had another melon get to about this size and then turn black. Think a happy thought for wee baby melon.

If you  saw the watermelon grow over the season and wondered if you had the room to grow them yourself, the answer is <i>maybe</i>.  Below is <i>one</i> plant. But keep in mind there are many, many varieties and not all end up this large, there are watermelons that can be grown in container gardens and others that grow watermelons in bushes. I'm going to test the soil next spring and see if it needs to be amended to grow fewer leaves and more fruit.

<i>note Big Daddy melon in upper left</i>

I planted three seedlings in the  main garden and they quickly out grew the space and spilled over the side but did not produce very well (one that died young, one that stopped growing, one that exploded, one that is not growing, and one that is healthy; the plants in the satellite garden have produced two healthy, ready for harvest, and  healthy one growing - fewer over all but stronger and healthier fruits) . I won't be growing them in the main garden next year. I will absolutely be growing watermelons again.

Monday, August 8, 2011

What I got done his weekend, in no particular order

- pulled out clothes for trip
-made decisions about clothes for trip
- collected dog and cat things
-laundered dog things
- spent way too long over thinking pill distribution and storage for one and all
- paused Netflix
-paused paper
- changed mind about clothes for trip
- temporarily changed address for mail
-cleaned out car with leaf blower
-got locks for shed
- shopped for food for trip
- nailed down irrigation for back yard
- packed clothes for trip
- scheduled yard man
- turned on free 3 months of XM for the car
- did laundry
- delt with over night deluge that tried to flood basement and left yard sodden
- kept dealing with puddles in basement
- corrected back yard irrigation
-unpacked clothes for trip
-harvested peppers and tomatoes
- prepped and froze peppers and tomatoes
-delt with puddles in basement
-repacked for trip
-harvested watermelon

the tag with the plants said the melons, "Crimson Sweet" would be 20 lbs. I'm not sure how much this one came out to but it weighs a lot more than Small Cat.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Friday Cat Blogging

Is it over yet?
I suddenly realized that I'm going on vacation in a week. I was supposed to go on vacation in the middle of August, a very, very long time away and it was supposed to stay that way. There is not reason to put a  lot of thought to  something that is so far away.

About that.

Last February it seemed a long time away. Months and months, really, practically a year away, a very long time in the future, certainly not less than a week away. And now here we are in the early stages of the middle of August and all I have to show for it is a jumble of clothing and a scribbled list on the refrigerator.

Not Good Enough.

ON the upside, I have figured out a way to water my melons with a minimum investment. The fact that along with my dog and cat my pet adult melons are going on vacation with me cuts down on the number of melons that will require care in my absents. The count will be two infants and a teenager left to mind the fort. I am hopeing that they will all still be there when I get back, aged to perfection. Or still there, whatever is easier.The peppers are going to get harvested this weekend as well, ready or not. They have an appointment with a pot of boiling water and then my freezer. I will be thrilled to see them again in November.

The tomatoes seem to be petering out at the right time, I have many still hanging out but their days are numbered. If they are still in the same condition the Friday before I leave I'm going to harvest the lot of them and give them to my friend at work who has taken the rest of them and tell her to let them sit in a bag for a few days to let them ripen up. The green beans are trying my patience.

In the front I've settled on praying for rain and hopeing the flowers are made of strong stuff, Steel Impatiences as it were. They are hardy plants. Hopefully they can live without my help for a while - except for all the water I'm planning on dumping on them over the weekend when I am not getting my stuff, going to Wally World fourteen times, paying the yard mowing guy, getting cash, getting more cash, setting up the back yard irrigation, cleaning my house and generally freaking out because I'm leaving for vacation in a week and I'm not ready yet!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Garden Sadness

I went out to water this morning and was faced with this

To say I was a little horrified is to be putting it lightly. I had all ready said goodbye to the animals and turned on the alarm. I quickly yanked the fruit from the vine (sob!) and tore inside to refrigerate it. I left for work again and left hopeing that somehow the refrigeration would some how heal the melon.

Oddly, that did not work. I quickly got y work computer up and running and I went to my buddy Google and asked why my melon freaked out this was. And Google knew. It freaked out because my watermelon got too much water! Who knew! I think the deluge we got over the weekend was the culprit.

Later, I opened it to see if I could at least eat it. The first sad melon was small but edible. This one was larger but not.

(objects in frame appear pinker than real life)

I was saddened. The fruit was mostly white rind and was clearly not something I would want to eat. I shook off the disappointment and did what I do with all garden failures - Launched it over the fence. I can't get precious with what I grow. I don't cry over ruined tomatoes or woody beans - true, there are a lot more tomatoes and beans, so the few I have to launch really don't affect my harvest, while there are so few melons that everyone has to count. I still have two adults and an adolescent that seem viable, I can't tell much about the two babies.  They all need positive vibes.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Food Porm part 2

Boom chicka wah wah!

I have a lot of peppers. A Lot. I have frozen, I have refrigerated, I have on the vine. I have a lot of peppers and while its been satisfying  filling my freezer with them, I would also like to take advantage of eating them in the now too.  Enter pepper steak or as it was pepper fajita slices $4! for enough to feed me twice. And I used three peppers, two from the fridge and one from the garden.

Speaking of gifts from the garden, while I was sniffing around for a pepper steak recipe, I studied up on watermelon storage. It turns out that while I'm freezing to death this winter I can freeze to death with a belly full of fresh watermelon.

It was the kind of morning where its  only twenty after nine and you are all ready mentally fixing dinner and planning your escape. I made myself a a mental list of things I needed 1) To find a recipe, 2) pick up some red meat and 2) get rice. I should have made  the kind of list you hold in you hands and you read and use as a study guide not the kind of list you completely forget you had  mentally checked off in the first place - also something that happens, I understand, with paper lists but its the cheat sheet aspect, you had to think about the information to write it down.

I ended up making it with noodles - I know that it was supposed to be served with rice and the recipe I found online was very specific about that - but when I was at the grocery store at lunch and after I picked up the steak and approached the check out I said to myself What else do I need? and I said I need a coke! and away I went.

It was fine with the noodles.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011


And so I'm bringing out stuff to take on vacation, counting out t-shirts, trying to learn weather divination to better decide if I should bring a sweater with me our sweater with me. If I bring only warm weather clothes it all but guarantees four days of forty-five degrees and gail force winds, as we have had in the last two years but if I come outfitted to climb K2, it will be ninety and stagnant the whole time. The only answer is to bring too much of everything. I can't be sure that I won't get invited to a last minute wedding, I should bring something dressy just in case.

(who am I kidding? people up there have full on Church weddings outfitted in  L.L Bean  flannel couture and professional grade, heavy duty sandles)

There is also the chance, every day that I might fall into a creek or the lake, or down an embankment - its a lifestyle choice Ive made and I'm comfortable with it,  and if you have to plan to change clothes at least twice a day every day, your available wardrobe needs to reflect that. But if its forty-five and gusty, I'll be doing less (I hope) creek invading and embankment falling. I don't have the wardrobe fir winter invading and falling.

And then there is shoes. I need my sneakers and I should probably think about the creek invading aspect of my lifestyle and just how much I do notlove walking around with wet sneakers, so that means a second pair of sneakers and then there is also the professional grade, heavy duty sandles and the regular duty sandles  - that I probably won't wear but if I don't bring them, I will so need them, as sneakers aren't really cute and not always appropriate and the heavy-duty professional grade sandles can be clunky so that means, lighter weight, cute sneakers as well,but at the same time, its vacation and hang other peoples fashion.

And speaking of vacations. The garden is not coming with me. Bummer, I know, I know, its mean to leave it there unprotected from the squirrels and no doubt producing like a son of a bitch - but the watermelon vines wouldn't fit in the back of the car and the tomato plants are too tall for the drive to see over and you know they would object to seat belts.

Out of sight not out of mind though. I am going to continue to take care of them. The main garden will be fine, the drip hose will drip on without me. The satellite garden on the other hand, this is a problem. I would just say "maybe it will rain, hopefully we'll get a tropical depression" and let it go, and that would be okay, except one of the new melons is there and I am not going to abandon a baby to "maybe it will rain, hopefully we'll get a tropical depression". I have to figure out a way to keep it alive.

My first thought was to splurge on a duel timer - because I thought they had such things. They might have last May but here in the depths of August - when we actually need to water our plants, they aren't on the shelves. Its the "duel" part that is a problem, one hose is no problem, and I all ready have one, I would like to water two areas at  two different times - it can't be that hard a problem and yet it is.

My  first idea was to just get a splitter and put one timer on one and one timer on the other - a great idea in theory but splitters aren't all that wide and timers are. I would have to buy more hoses and the more things you have Frankenstein-ed together, the more opportunity for leaks and I hate leaks. I like elegant and elegant means A) tidy B) less-is-more and C) not leaking . Leaking is untidy and umteen hoses is more.

I started to think about the front. The idea is as follows : use the front water, add a timer, and run hose or hose - i  from the front to the back behind the shed to culminate with a sprinkler that will water both the melons and the beans. I have a spigot looking for work, and where there is a spigot there is somewhere to plug in a timer. I have a timer all ready in storage and there is a  existing hose. I think what the plan is going to be is that I use the old timer, I have to find out if it still works after sitting in the basement for a year, but if it doesn't, a replacement wouldn't hurt my bottom line all that much and I know all ready the project would need at least one more hose - First I need to measure though and find out just how much hose I'm going to need ( the lack of an elegant design comes into play here), I'm pretty sure my existing hose isn't a super long variety and I'll need to do this before the Wally World Christmas fairies pull their  garden hoses off the shelf and replace them with garland and Christmas lights.

Monday, August 1, 2011


What a great weekend. No jobs! No projects! I didn't do anything I didn't feel like doing. It rained( thank you baby Jesus!)  so I didn't feel obligated to do anything sweaty outside. Fortunately for the people at work, I felt like doing laundry and taking a shower because otherwise, I watched TV and played in the garden and watched some more TV.

While I was in the garden I got some great news

A TWO! new baby watermelons!! So exciting! While I'm  bragging on my watermelons...

I think the experiment worked. They are all ready a lot larger than the first one ever got. I am so pleased with these guys. Who knew you could grow watermelons in your back yard? The Watermelon Board should do more to let people know this.

The rest of the garden is doing its thing, the peppers are doing fab

Total rock stars. The tomatoes are perking along, producing heroically despite the increased attacks from squirrels. Bastards.

The garden as a whole is being very productive, I've put up about a cup of sauce so far  from my Roma's and had two very good meals from my green beans.

 Family picture

 right profile

left profile

After spending so much time with food, I was hungry! Enter pork nee' boeuf en croute with garden fresh green beans and peach pastries.

Actually, it looks like I worked kind of alot. Time flys when you're having fun.