Cleaning house physically, emotionally, and mentally.

Mornings are getting chilly in the Pacific Northwest. I have not yet turned on the heat in my house. This was the temperature in the house last week.

I have a gas fireplace which I turn on to take the chill off. The cats and the dog appreciate the warmth.

One outside chore is to clean up the flower pots that reside on the deck railing. Look at all the colorful trees in the background.

The only large tree I have to clean up after is my maple tree in the front yard. So far, there are minimal leaves on the ground.

The sprinklers have been blown out, winter fertilizer put on the lawn, the snowblower is out for maintenance, and I am ready for Halloween!

Now to just store the patio furniture and wait for leaves to fall so I can rake them up. Oh joy!

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Typos – Part 1

Before I retired, I was a technical writer for almost 30 years. As expected, typos are a major no-no, especially in professional publications. Although everyone makes mistakes such as typos, there is an expectation of accurate spelling and basic grammar within a professional publication. I personally am appalled at the numerous errors I find in articles published online and in print media.

Below are some of the recent typos/grammatical errors I have noticed. Spell check would have caught some of these errors. Proofreading would have found the others.

Example 1. Wow – this is not even a typo, but just horrible spelling.

Example 2. Hmmm, did you mean “campings” or “campaigns” in this example?

Example 3. Of course she didn’t get anywhere on her “ow” because it hurts!

Example 4. “…the FBI will expand it is investigation …” Come on people!

Example 5. I am confused. Whose life was difficult? Ford is female so this should be “… her life…” Who is the “his” in this sentence?

Example 6. This may be my favorite typo in these examples. One should divorce Bread.

Thanks for letting me post examples of a pet peeve. I’m sure (and sad) there will be more.

Day Tripping

I recently renewed my passport. Although instructions say it would take 4-6 weeks to receive the new passport, it only took 2.5 weeks. Since I was armed with a new passport, I thought I should try it out.

A friend (referred to as L) wanted to head up to Canada to purchase an antibiotic cream that is expensive in the USA, but reasonably priced in Canada. So a day trip was planned.

I dropped the dog off at doggy day care in the morning. L and I left my house soon after to head north. It was a beautiful day for a drive in the country.

When we reached the Canadian border, the Canadian border guard was a little curt with his questions. For example, he asked if we were bringing $10,000 cash into Canada. Both L and I responded with “I wish.”

The guard glared at us and asked “Is that a yes or no?” Sheesh, no sense of humor. He then gave us back our passports and let us pass. L thought he was supposed to stamp our passports, but my thought was to just leave.

We arrived at our destination and wanted lunch. A local directed us to a restaurant two blocks away – up a steep hill. Nothing says out-of-shape like hoofing it up a steep hill.

We had a wonderful lunch, but noticed some differences. Iced tea was already sweetened. The amount of barbecue sauce on a burger was minimal. No straws came with a soft drink. And we were not asked if we wanted dessert. None of these were big deals, just differences.

Here is a picture of the descent down the steep hill. So much easier going down than up!

We then stopped at a store to grab a snack for the drive home. I grabbed a couple of chocolate bars. When I went to pay for them and opened my wallet, I was abruptly informed “we don’t take American.” Very hostile.

We went to a drug store to purchase the antibiotic cream, no problem. A friend wanted me to get some Tylenol with codeine for her migraines. When I asked about it, I was told that they don’t sell it to Americans to take across the border. Ok, no problem.

We left and headed home. The American border guard was in good humor and chatted with us while searching the car. He asked if we had purchased any Tylenol with codeine. Hmmm, is that a piece of the American opioid problem?

Anyway, after seven hours, a 225 mile round trip, we were back home. I ran out to pick up the dog at doggy day care. Ziva was so tired from playing all day, she has not moved for hours.

One of the cats had to express their opinion on being left alone all day by pooping on the rug in the foyer. I was only gone for 20 minutes and someone had to leave a calling card. Damn cats!!

Although Canada so close, it is a different country. I’ve never felt any animosity before from little day trips to Canada or from Canadians. Makes me wonder if this not-so subtle hostility we experienced is in anyway a result of “Make America Great Again,” I don’t want to have anything to do with it. 😩

However, the bottom line is that my passport works!

Feeding Time

With one dog and three cats – and each cat on a different food – feeding time is scheduled chaos. Or at least it was until everyone accepted the new regime.

Dog gets fed twice a day. It’s easy now because I feed her outside. It will definitely get challenging when I have to feed her inside. Here is Ziva patiently waiting for dinner.

Sunni is the only cat who is not on a special diet. She is thin and if she says she’s hungry, I give her a few bites. Sunni eats on the top of the cat tree. Here is Sunni glaring at me at dinner time.

Miko, the Balinese, is overweight and on a diet. She is the reason for this new feeding routine. She gets 1/3 cup twice a day. Totally not enough according to her. I split the last 1/3 cup into two feedings so she thinks she’s not starving to death. Here is piggy cat; hopefully she will be a bit thinner as the diet continues.

During the first week of her diet, she would counter surf to find something to eat. She discovered a basket where I keep kitty treats. Miko was so focused on food that she chewed through the bottom of the package and then ate all the treats. Here is the proof.

And then there is Peaches, my 18 year old cat. She is on prescription kidney food and a tiny cat. She likes to forage several times a day, which makes it interesting trying to keep the others from snitching her food. I decided to feed Peaches in the bathroom with the door closed. Trying to lure her there took two weeks of patience and stealth (since she’s deaf, I could sneak up on her if she wasn’t looking). Here is one attempt at getting Peaches (on the right) to at least get close to the bathroom.

Finally, Peaches now heads to the bathroom when she wants to eat. And she yowls when done so I can open the door to let her out.

And that is how three cats and one dog get fed at my house. I can never leave because it would take a day to explain their schedule, food, and eating stations.

And my daughter just had the audacity to ask me to adopt another cat!!

My New Motto

I share my house with one dog and three cats. No human except for me. Today, I was watching the DVD of “Book Club” starring Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen, etc.

The movie has some outrageously funny moments. You know, actual laugh out loud, maybe even a snort or two funny moments.

I had just taken a bite of a scrumptious lemon tart (my dinner, don’t judge) when one of those funny moments occurred. I inhaled some lemon tart and began choking on it. The dog is not yet CPR certified so she was no help. The cats couldn’t care less. (Ha – they sure as hell would care a bit more if I missed feeding them their dinner.)

After choking for a minute, I could finally catch my breath. And what do you think was the first thing I did? Yup, rewind the movie to find out what happened during that funny moment when I was choking. I do have my priorities, right?!?

Anyway, my new motto is don’t eat while watching comedies – at least until the dog gets her CPR certification or learns the Heimlich maneuver.

(Photo from Daily Mail, UK)

One Crafty Chick

Being retired I no longer have to get up early to head off to work. Yay! But that also leaves me with a vast amount of time to fill with some activity.

Although I make quilts, I have discovered that I want some little project that can be completed in a short amount of time. Thus the quilting is often relegated to another day.

Keychains, key tags, snap tabs – whatever you call them have become my latest obsession. I have a small embroidery machine and can stitch out a key tag in about an hour. Here’s my latest one that I am gaga over.

Too cute, huh?

So I have been making these for my friends. See if you can guess which one is for a hair stylist, a carpenter, a bricklayer, and a banker.

How about a veterinarian, an avid boater, a Pittsburgh Penguins fan, and an artist?

I recently made one for my niece who has a new kitten. I had a photo of the kitten, so tried to make a key tag that at least somewhat resembled the kitten. I think it came out close.

This is my new hobby/obsession and I will share other pics in a later post.

Craziness Time

I have several outdoor pots where I attempt to grow tomatoes and strawberries. Me thinks my green thumb has died because I have yet to harvest any strawberries, and tomatoes are limited.

Earlier this growing season I noticed that my dog, Ziva, was gently plucking green tomatoes from the plants. Being resourceful, I stuck a little portable fence around the plants with the idea being the dog couldn’t get to them.

Much to my amusement – and Ziva’s chagrin – after hearing weird noises outside, I found this sight at the back door.

Yes, Ziva was found with indisputable evidence of tomato stealing. Apparently, while trying to get to the tomatoes, Ziva got her head stuck in the portable fence. Isn’t that the guiltiest look ever?!?

And speaking of craziness, the following two incidents occurred last night in the area I live in. (These incidents were reported in a Facebook group that monitors local law enforcement and fire department scanners and provides a heads up report. I find them very useful in just being kept aware of what’s going on.) Both of the following incidents seem a little beyond the norm.

Incident 1

Incident 2

All I can say is WOW – and it’s not even a full moon! Come to your own conclusions.