Wednesday, December 31, 2008

HAW and HNY and Ho Ho Ho

Happy Animal Wednesday, Happy New Year and Ho Ho ha hahh haaaaaaaaaaaaa. I forgot all about what I was going to tell you because the METER READER came this morning and I had to yell at the Slims to shut up until I nearly lost my MIND. Seeds and Sagebrush. The noise. The foolishness. The mayhem.....ho ho haaaa haaaaa haaaaa-I do so love it when the Slims get upset.

One of the Slims has a name like I do. I am Oliver, and the white Slim is Prissy. Now that I've realized she is a sentient being, I've been practicing her name. We've even sat in the same chair a few times to watch the blue screen on the wall. It's boggling, this concept-a Slim with a name.

I've learned another thing too-some of the things I eat have names. My favorite is the crap-you know, those little fruit balls that grow in clumps. For some reason, every time I say "crap", my human servant laughs. She's funny that way.

HAW! (I'm so glad I got to take over Animal Wednesday), everyone needs a voice.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Just going to do it

All these things I want to do need to do should do shouldn't do. I really can't unsort it all. So I'm going to pick one.

I'm working on *gasp* a Children's Book about how to Meet a Dog. I just posted a really ugly rant on a forum for really ugly rants about people letting their kids maul dogs in public, and as partial penance for my ugliness (i am not taking down the rant) I will create a short book, complete with illustrations that will not turn off little boys.

I've been joking about doing it for a year, I can't tackle anything any bigger than that, but I think I will enjoy it. Sadly, I cannot use any of my lengthy rant because it was liberally speckled with four letter words.

I was originally going to point it towards parents, but parents are adults and are much harder to teach than kids and I don't have the patience for that.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

A New Door Opens



I've been holding off blogging about this because I didn't want anything else going on in my life to color this -the announcement I've waited my entire conscious life for. Casper is mine.

One day a couple of weeks ago I blogged about how my life was working, yadda, yadda, I enjoyed my riding but lessons were enough (I deleted that) and I was convincing myself yet again not to have my own horse. Then someone gave me a horse. And not just any horse-this horse.

Now, I'm not being subjective when I say that anyone can see at one glance what an absolute dream of a horse he is. LOOK at this horse!!! Look at those eyes. Look at the color. A non-horse lover would want this horse.

Due to some family illnesses, he's been a pasture ornament for a few years, and when he gets the notion, he breaks out and comes into the front yard for pets and carrots. He LIKES to be fussed over, have his mane brushed and baths, etc. I would love him even if he was an ugly horse, but he's not-he's drop dead gorgeous.

Shelly and Kim Harris are angels. They did for me what I couldn't or wouldn't do for myself. They gave me a wonderful horse, and now it's up to me to take this gift and make the most of it.

Casper is going to my riding instructor for a tune up-then we'll work together with the instructor to become a team. He's almost identical in size and build to Bailey-the lesson horse, so moving over to Casper will not be as much of a stretch. Even his name is special-the "horse that got away" in my youth-her name was Spook. Don't you just love it when something happens and you KNOW it's ok to say "yes?"

I'm not telling my folks until after Casper has his tune up and we are working together. Part of this is that I don't want any raining on my parade, and part of it is that I hope to work with the trainer on the process-to learn to train as well as ride (within my abilities). I want to give Mom time to heal before I give her something else to worry about.

I'm going to trade my travel trailer for a horse trailer with small living quarters-it looks like there'll be one more going on the road for any adventures, and I couldn't be happier about that.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Another Nice Day

My best buddy Moon and I went for a long drive, played in several parks on different surfaces and textures (cement, rubber, plastic, metal, wood) and climbed on logs, bleachers, etc. We shared an Arby's lunch and went to the bird store to select the mansion for our new friends. We ended up with one that will hold about 40, but we are still only getting 4-I just want them to be comfortable and be able to flap around and get some space to themselves if they want.

Moon got a new collar and a new harness. We went to harness up for a bike ride and his old harness was like 2 inches too small-he's growing into a big boy.

My mind seems desperate to hold on to his relaxed feeling, so I'm just going with the flow. Moon didn't even realize we were having a training session-he just thought we were out for a nice long drive....and so we were.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas

Had a nice quiet dinner at Mom and Dad's, we were all on good behavior and grateful for the quiet. It's a nice day outside, so Moon and I went first to the duck pond to feed the ducks, and wound up taking a nap in the field next to the duck pond. A fellow walking his lab approached and woke us up-I think he was afraid I was a dismal holiday overdose or something-the truth was, I was enjoying the grass and the sky and the sun.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

HAW-YOU Decide

I have attempted to help my human be more tidy. I helped her the other day by flying over to a drawer she left open and shredding and sampling the contents and that wretched woman dared to say "shoo" to me! Beaks and Feathers! "Shoo?????" Who says "shoo"? Apparently people who leave their kitchen drawers open where I can see them, that's who.

You tell me-is she an ungrateful creature or what? I punished her by clicking my beak when I saw her...and drove her crazy by hopping over to her and saying "huh?" when she was saying nothing at all......ooooooooh yesssssss, that's just so funny. I could do that all day. She's like Pavlov's freakin dog-I say "huh?" and she's compelled to look at me.....heheheheheeeeeee.

Many of my adoring fans have sent me bags and bags of toilet paper rolls, my favorite shredding item. All the snakes are now too big for them, so I no longer have to "share". Birds don't share well.

My human and I are taking in some creatures for "Christmas". A few weeks ago, someone left a box of about 150 parakeets on the side of the road-the night the first freeze came in. About 100 made it. The rescue society wants them to go in groups-which means they will not be finger pets-but I think, and my human thinks, that I will enjoy watching them in a flight cage. So, we decided to take a few in. I've known parakeets before, I already make a perfect "keet" song and actually I'm looking forward to having more of my own kind around here. (As long as they stay in their own cage, never go in my kitchen or take too much attention away from me).

We'll take three or four of the ones least likely to be chosen-won't they be excited when they come home and see that they have a new, big cage and a supreme Grey Being to worship? Oh, Nuts and Berries, they will be amazed when they get a load of ME.....aaaaaaaahahhhaaaaaa.

Next summer, they'll move out to the aviary on the front of the house and we'll move my sleeping cage over by THAT window so I can continue my tutelage of them. Yeah, it's cool to live with a crackpot who screens in flower beds-hahahahhaaaaaa. I may just forgive her for saying "shoo" to me.

Here's a big Christmas Eve/Animal Wednesday kiss for you all......HAW and mwwwwwaaaah!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Succulent Cactus Monday!




It's most mandela-like, isn't it?

This has little to do with CM, but I've got a doctor's appointment this morning and I've had the flu, so there has been some puking. I really hope she'll adopt a let's wait and see attitude and not remove any fluid from my lap band. It's really been a tough few weeks and I think my eating issues have more to do with lots of snot and runoff due first to crying then to a cold....then the stomach flu hit. Ok, not eating issues, puking issues.

I really think this fill can be salvaged with a little extra liquids, mushy food and some band babying for a few more days, but I will do what the doctor says.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

HAW....ahhhhhh hahhahahhaaaaaaaaaaaa

Apparently my human servant has her limits.  I was cross with her, and bit her on the head a few times and just generally informed her that the kitchen belonged to me and I did not appreciate her allowing the Slims to hang out with us.....and she very politely took me to the back room until I settled down a bit.

Of course, her energy has been low lately, and when one's energy is low, someone else with higher energy must fill the void.  But I must have gotten carried away with the void filling.

In addition to the Slims being fed and pampered in MY kitchen, she bought these pellet things and has cut back on my seeds and such.  Nuts and Berries!  Who eats pellets?  I went on a hunger strike, I did. and no one cared.  She has even cut back on my peanuts and pignolias.  What's next, Grape rationing?  Sakes alive, it's no wonder I was cross.

When I'm cross I stomp around and click my beak-it goes SNAP SNAP-a fierce display indeed.  I bet you'd shiver in your own feathers if you saw it.

There it is, my true confession-I'm not a saint, but neither are you and we're still friends.....hahhahhhhaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa    oooooooooooooooooooooh-I'm such a funny bird!   HAW y'all.......love, Oliver the parrot

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The Boogy Man Rule

I selected only one item to pack away with Uncle John-his favorite glasses, with little plastic case and the veteran's admin label on it.  It didn't seem to matter that the prescription was wrong because I'm sure it will all work out in the afterlife.  John actually didn't want any of his possessions from his apartment (or so he said) and I was never sure if that is someone who is trying to let go or has really let go.  But it was probably something of both.

I wanted to leave something of me too, but I didn't want to be an eternal tag along, so I finally just said a few words into the glasses case and shut the case.  It seemed a very nice way of balancing my need for symbolism and his need for simplicity.

I showed up early Monday morning with his glasses-he was still on his cot in the room where he was waiting for his casket, so I sat outside in the lobby and drank some coffee.  It was important to me to not be late for this final task.  

I finally agreed not to go to the cemetery because Mom wouldn't agree to let me go alone and I didn't want her out in the below zero wind chill.  So I delivered the glasses, made a final ID, and was the only family member who ever saw the casket or Uncle John in it.  This last part was by design-he didn't want to be remembered as he was in the past few weeks.  

I will work out how to incorporate what I saw in such a way as to express it without betraying his privacy or trust, but that is for another time.  I've never so closely shared an extended illness or death before-and that experience is now a cherished part of me. 

Sometimes I get a little scared or frustrated at how my life is changing yet again, but I would not, if I could, go back and change my decision to walk this walk with my Uncle.  I think I am more of a human being than I have ever been because of the past few years.

I want to finish this post on a positive note because while the sadness is still with me, I know, beyond any doubt, the good outweighs the bad.  Don't be afraid of old age or illness or death-the boogy man in our minds is so much bigger than the reality of it.  The boogy man part is truly insignificant compared to the total experience, which follows the boogy man rule in general.

As I sit now, trying to decide on a new future, I am going to try and remember that boogy man rule.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Cactus and Cold

This is not art, but a cactus related thought.  It is minus degrees in Western Oklahoma today-and there are cacti there-and there will be cacti there next summer when its hot.  I never really thought about cactus and the cold before.  Extreme heat AND extreme cold-the noble cactus really IS a survivor.

HCM

Saturday, December 13, 2008

The Ice Man Cometh

I'm going to my riding lesson and then prepare for the ice storm that is supposed to hit in waves beginning tomorrow.  I'm still not really abounding with energy, but that will be no comfort at all if the electricity gets blown out again and there is no food or heat in the house.

My first executive decision of the day will be to buy TWO small generators rather than one big whole house one.  I want Mom and Dad warm and cozy in their own house and me in mine.  Mom can't even hear the word "snake" without a bunch of shuddering and shivering-I don't know how much of it is for show and how much is for real, and I don't care at this point-she just needs to stay warm and safe at her own house and leave me to my snakes, birds and dogs.

Today will be to batten down the hatches, then tomorrow I have to go find something to wear to Uncle John's ceremony.  I really pray that Mom and Lee decide not to go-and that is very selfish on my part-but I need to focus on the drive and the task, not comforting them, and having passengers in the car just adds a whole new level of difficulty to an already difficult situation.  If the weather is too bad, I won't go either, and they are probably praying for enough ice to make the point moot.

So, now I've gathered my thoughts about what I want to happen, and I will go forth and see and deal with what actually DOES happen.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Fuel on Zero

I must have exhausted all my nervous energy at last-today I can barely lift my fingers to type.  I think this is normal thing, but I hope it doesn't last long.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Road Trip

I made up an excuse to head to Dallas-I really just wanted to be out on the road.  Prissy road shotgun-she and I have never gone solo before.  She was a little wild at first, but when it was clear that she'd get no attention for acting like a goose, she settled down.  She came over, laid down next to me, and just like Dottie used to do-she pressed her little nose hard into my leg.  I almost stopped breathing for a minute, without warning the missing of Dottie hit me like a physical force.

It happened when I was in with John too-in the midst of grieving for him, I remembered Dottie's first visit to the nursing home in California, and had a spasm of grief on grief.

I am pretty sure some of my favorite angels are near these days, and that's why I'm reacting so, and I'm glad they are here, even if it hurts for a moment too.

I thought how alike Priss and I are-the eternal children.  Prissy is no more a baby dog than I am-but she's always been "little Dottie", and I have perhaps stood back from her since Dottie died and that isn't fair.  She was really proud and happy to be the dog riding shotgun, just as I was proud and happy to be the person who took care of John.

As always, I enjoyed driving over the Arbuckle mountains.  Once a range the size of the Rockies, the Arbuckles are now more like hills-but their raw bones break the surface of the earth.  I always marvel that the rock face I am looking at was once buried deep within a huge mountain-truly the skeletal system is all that remains.  When I pass by, I mentally lay my cheek against the cool stone and feel as if I'm touching the soul of the ancient mountain.

It was nice to rest my heart on mother earth and feel the road pass under my wheels.  It's easier for me to touch the timeless and nameless when I am flying over the ground and I am grateful for the chance.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Death Cookies and Oprah

Don't want to step on Oliver's glory, but this is kind of funny/sad.  I went to funeral home this morning to make arrangements.  I've got a bit of a stomach thing, so I didn't eat beforehand and after two hours of arrangements and coffin selection, I was hungry.  Thirty minutes later, I was shaky hungry.

Resthaven had several silver trays with home made cookies out, and when I first saw them I thought "who would eat Death Cookies"....and now I knew.  

But here's the thing-I never eat in hospitals, and only in nursing homes when it's to share a meal with a loved one, and I've never been in a funeral home before for any length of time.  Factor in the dead Christmas trees in all the stores making my sinus go haywire, the dry arctic air and a certain amount of upset over the entire gloomy situation-and I wasn't sure that cookie would go down or stay down.

Then I remembered Oprah's show yesterday with OCD people who had the same kinds of issues, only worse, and how the doctor had encouraged them to eat things and hold it down-so I did the same thing and choked down a Death Cookie-the smallest (about 2 inches across) I could find.  The sugar helped and I was able to complete arrangements without puking or otherwise causing a scene by passing out.  Thanks O and Dr. Oz!

Ok, other bizarre (to me) things.  First, I know my family background is informal and I don't want to offend anyone-these things are personal and private and handled for each family differently.  That said, I found the "Funeral and Thank You Note Organizer" just a bit weird.

It is a little notebook and inside the notebook are pages to track who came to the service, who brought food and NUMBERED STICKIES to place on the food so you could cross reference it to the listing page later and thank Auntie Em for the Green Bean Casserole.  I solemnly listened to my instructions and thanked the director, but I know the look on my face said "this is the dumbest thing I've ever heard of", and I wonder if it isn't some sort of southern US thing.  We probably keep the Thank You Notes afloat-eventually we'll be sending Thank You for Thank You notes to people.

Now, the Food Thing in general is, well, odd. Casseroles are the typical southern funeral food.  And for a big family, especially one that has just lost the main cook, it might be a thoughtful and good idea.  But, personally, if I am too distraught to cook, I just roll on down to Taco Bell.  And while all the socializing, keeping busy, etc. is said to be healing, wolfing down huge amounts of fat and sugar isn't going to be good for the living.

Picking out the coffin required some time.  On one hand, I knew Uncle John was beyond caring and that all the pressure was in my mind, but on the other hand, I very much wanted to get it right-so that I could report on it to the rest of family and they would draw some peace from knowing he was eternally housed in the correct box.  I prefer wood, but instantly I knew when I saw it, he would want Carbon Steel if he could choose, and I was able to find a Military designed, Carbon Steel, blue, with blue interior.  Blue was his favorite color, and even though there will be no pictures or any evidence of it, I will know he was laid out in suitable Military fashion and according to his design sensibilities (not mine).  And yes, that gave me some comfort.  Better still, it was in his preferred price range, not bottom of the line, not top, firmly in the middle so I don't have to worry about him fuming about it in the afterlife.

Because he is getting a Military Funeral in a National Cemetery, many of the other details are pre-ordained, and that, combined with Oklahoma Laws, are a bit odd.  For instance, embalming is not required, and I am pleased, because I really don't want to pollute the earth with my Uncle John's remains full of formaldehyde.  BUT, the Military provides and insists upon a Vault, as do most other townships and there is no way around it but to go find private land, get permits and yadda yadda.  So, the best we can do is just not do any great damage to the water table.  I finally defaulted to his only instructions "the Military will handle it" and so they will.

It is possible to get memorial jewelry to hold cremains.  Ok, I can almost cope with that.  The "Thumbies" absolutely creeped me out beyond belief.  A gold, silver or white gold replica of the deceased actual thumbprint.  I stared at them, went back, stared again, and came up with the same conclusion-creep city.  Thinking about it now-still creeping me out......ewwwwww.

I will share some information that may or may not help someone.   I asked the funeral director about protocol-when they are preparing and cleaning the remains, does someone look for signs of abuse, etc.?  I told him I was unclear about what to do at the time he died-he was under a blanket, and I held his arm, but I really really did not want to do an inspection, and I didn't know if I was supposed to.  Turns out, that's the job of the medical and funeral attendants so there is no peeking required.  I'm glad I asked, and it was troubling me so now I can report to the family that it has all be handled properly.  (In no way did I suspect abuse, but without a visual verification who would know?)  This paragraph clearly belongs under the heading weird items, but there you have it.


HAW HAW HAW


My human has been quiet the past few days and I am left to brighten the air with sound.  She did rouse herself to call and cackle a bit with me this evening. 

 It's been frightfully cold and dreary outside, and being left to my own devices by the gloomy human, I've perfected my cabinet door opening abilities.  She does manage to rouse herself from her funky thoughts when I swing the cabinet door open and begin rummaging through the contents.  Rattling the wine bottles is sure to get her  running in.

She did boil some navy beans just for me-I've been snacking on them and grapes, trying to improve my waistline a bit.  I've been hitting the pignolias a little too hard lately....well, that and the whipped cream and the cheese.....yeah, time for a little holistic intervention or I'll be too fat to fly.

This picture has nothing to do with any of that-it's one taken this summer of the small Slim they call Prissy.  Since it's been cold, Prissy has joined me in the kitchen on some days-she's about as much fun as a gloomy human-she sniffs on the floor and ignores me unless I throw something on her stupid head.  I like it when she barks cause then I can tell her to "shaddup!", but if she won't bark I just yell at her to shaddup anyway.  Why should I depend on her cooperation for MY amusement?

For some reason the gloomy human decided I should say "Ho Ho Ho, Merry Christmas"....and I had a delightful time pretending that I was going to do it....I'd say Haaaaaa   Haaaaaaa FAAAAART!!!!!!  She'd brighten up get all hopeful looking at the first Haaaa-then BAM, I'd let her have it.  Hey, a bird has to do what he can to keep himself amused.

Since she's been so quiet, I've been walking over to her and going "Huh?" as if she's said something I didn't quite hear-it confuses the hell out of her.......heh heh heh heh heh......Like I said, a bird has to do, what a bird has to do.

HAW HAW HAW........(FAAAAAART) to you all!  (fooled you didn't I?)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

A Cold Windy Day with Snow on the Way

Today is OK.  Temps dropping, the wind is howling and maybe some snow.  Typical Okla. winter.  The wind storms of the past week are probably a blessing in disguise, they'll knock down any loose limbs that they ice storms of last year didn't get.

Between the wind and the sadness, I didn't sleep a whole lot last night, and I really didn't try very hard.  Sleep will come again, it always does, and fighting to sleep when you can't sleep just makes a person miserable.

The hospice chaplain called promptly at 9 this morning-I am sure designed to make sure I was up and moving and facing the day and my grief.  I was awake and arguing with myself about whether or not the dogs really needed to go out yet.  Oliver was cooing softly to himself, he doesn't crank up big time till the covers come off his sleeping cage.

Oliver was somewhat subdued yesterday because I was, however, he doesn't have a lot of time or patience for grieving people, and one quiet day is all he can manage.   I welcome his noise-he's so alive on this gloomy grey day.

John's death was so awfully slow, that a lot of the true grieving has been done already.  I've grieved daily for the past year, and in the past few months have agonized over every decision.  When he gave in and was ready to go a few weeks ago, I tried to go along with it.   I amended my prayer from "please don't go" to "I understand if you need to go"...but I never could get to the hearty "run free, go with joy" phase.  I'm imperfect, but at least I felt guilty for not being completely willing to let him go, for all the good it does.  His dying is his, not mine.

I thought about the antibiotic decision, and I'm not going to second guess it.  It gave him another week, but it gave ME the peace of knowing he went because it was time, not because I with held something that could have saved him.  When I was speaking to him after he died, I wondered if I should apologize for keeping him here, but I realized immediately that the John I loved would not have wanted to burden me with the extra guilt of deciding to let him die.

Ironically, once dead, you have to get in line.  He's at the funeral home, but the first appointment to make final arrangements isn't until tomorrow.  A lot of people go right after a major holiday, so this isn't unusual and I'm not upset.  I really think it's just, well, funny.  

The military burial is even stranger still.  They will call Fort Sill, and the cemetery will give him a time to report for his final duty-and he'd better be there spot on, ready to go into the ground.  I know this would seem right to Uncle John, but to me it is very bizarre, and fortunately for everyone I will not be driving the hearse.

Hearse.  Funeral car-such strange terms.  Service.  I service my car, a stallion services a mare....funeral service?  There isn't going to be one.  John didn't go to church, the two aunts (my Mom and her sister) are old and before John got sick he hadn't been back to Oklahoma in 20 years or more.  So, who would come?  No viewings, no open caskets.  He had no opinion on it, and my opinion is shared by the rest of the family-it's not a comfort.  In fact, we, the living, are pretty appalled at the thought of someone staring at us when we are dead.

We, the living.  Apparently there are two kinds of us in the family now, the living and the dead.  John is now an ancestor, which in some cultures is seen as kind of a promotion.  I'm surprised Hallmark doesn't have a card that says "Congratulations, you're an ancestor."...but then who would you send it to?  "Congratulations, your Uncle is an ancestor" doesn't work any better than "Congratulations, you finally married off that ugly daughter of yours...."

For years (wow, it's been years) when I'd visit the facilities John was in, I would mentally gird my loins to go do battle with death.  I'd walk in projecting confidence and energy-pushing back the gathering gloom with a booming voice and a smile.  Yet, sitting next to Uncle John's body, I didn't feel that I had lost a battle.  One, it wasn't MY battle, it was his to win or lose.  And he didn't lose-he moved on and left behind a body that no longer worked for him.  As I stared at what remained, I thought to myself "that is not John at all, that is a carcass...Death, are you happy about that? "  Ok, "Oh Death, where is thy sting" is more poetic.

But, more than just the lack of loss or victory, I got the sense that Death, the big D with a capital letter and everything, was really an illusion.  There was no Death, nothing inhabited that body at all.  Death did not take over as much as John, like Elvis, just left the building.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Farewell, My Uncle

Uncle John passed away this morning.  It was just like John to start a new journey on a Monday morning-he's very orderly and conventional.  I felt him go-I was driving around the parking lot trying to compose myself and find a parking spot and "Poof"-the tension just left and I knew he'd just died.  I even giggled out loud-"You died while I was trying to find a parking spot."  My being late was a running joke with us.

I've never actually seen a dead person that wasn't in a coffin or a picture.  John pretty much looked like he was asleep, minus the shaking that was the calling card of Parkinson's disease.  His hand was still warm and his body relaxed further while I sat there with him.

I remembered reading that the body should not be disturbed so as to give the soul time to leave, so I sat there until I felt like he had really and truly left the building.  While I sat there, I talked to him about what I was feeling-and was surprised to realize that the grief I felt was for me not having my Uncle-I was truly glad he was freed from his body that had failed so. 

 Is that always the way of things?  Is grief an emotion for the living and not the dead?  If so, that doesn't make grief seem very noble at all, does it?

I admitted freely I'd rather sit with John's body than go tell any family members, and there was no hurry.  Grief can wait a few minutes more.  I told Mom and held her and comforted her, and went to Daddy and told him it was OK to cry.  My parents are neither one very comfortable with crying, so I led the way with some more tears and hugs, until it felt like it was enough for them.

I thought about how people put quantity values on tears-"she hardly shed a tear" but I know those few tears cost my parents dearly, and was a fitting tribute to a man they loved.

A few nights ago I dreamt John was at a party with me and was fat and happy. I gave him a hug in the dream and I knew at the time it was him telling me how he wanted to be remembered.  Mom agreed with me when I told her.

A few months ago I moved everything out of the trust and back into John's estate-when he's gone, I'm done and back to my own devices.  I will stay in Oklahoma and take care of my family still, but I am also ready to have my own life too.  No one ever intended for things to get the way they did, but they did, and since they did, that must be how they should have been.  But I'm ready for a new direction too.  John's off on a new adventure and so shall I be-and probably neither of us knows which way we are headed.

John was a good man, a kind man, without a mean bone in his body.  I know Dottie was waiting for him, I could feel her in the room with us, and there is always that part of me that wants to go be with them.  But now is not the time.

John, I miss your smile and your quiet humor....I miss you.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Hmmmmmmm

I traded the jeep that I traded the motorcycle for for a truck.
That makes no sense.
In the beginning there was a red motorcycle.
I traded it for a jeep.
I traded the jeep for a truck that would actually pull the trailer I had before the beginning.
So now I can pull my trailer but if I want the wind in my hair I guess I'll have to hang my head out the window like a dog.


Friday, December 5, 2008

Huh?

I want to live in the backwoods in a mansion made of trash
Travel the country on 200 dollars cash
I want a zillion animals
But able to leave at the drop of hat
I don't really know what I want
Whats up with that?

Why do we have to choose.  One life is not enough.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Brrrrr

On a day like today I wish I had furry ears.....brrr.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Animal Wednesday-Oliver takes the helm

Greetings Humans!  I have come to share my wisdom.  First is a picture of a being my human servant calls "Cousin Mocha".  He's a Slim (my word for dogs), but I do rather admire his hairdo.

Last week my human was gone a lot, distracted even more and did something horrible called "cleaning the kitchen"....smelly liquids on the floor, chemical stink everywhere.  THEN, she put away my peanut sack.  I've been known to nip over to the counter if the peanuts aren't forthcoming and get my own.

One morning she left me in the back room while she went off to "visit".  So, I took matters into my own wings and flew down the hall into that ghastly clean kitchen, bare of all decent food.  I opened a few cabinets, found something called Egg Nog Protein Powder, tore the top off it.....bleeeeech.    The human came back and found me playing in the powder on the floor-it clearly wasn't fit to eat.  Then she picked me up, petted me and gave me some grapes and pignolias.  She did mention there was a bowl of SEEDS ready in the back room, but I must have my fresh fruit and veg midmorning, or at the very least a peanut.

Apparently humans designate some days as special days or "holidays".  It doesn't seem to make them very happy-even though you hear the "happy holiday" phrase a lot.  Me, I think every day is special-why pick one or two a year?

Another human trait is that you need some cue or event to laugh.  Who is training you?  I can't see a thing, yet you won't laugh unless you get that mysterious cue.  Me, I laugh just cause I like laughing-maybe you should try it some time.

Happy Animal Wednesday-I must take your leave now, as there are some choice grapes that need my attention.  Ha ha ha hah haaaaaaah!   HAW!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

All Talked Out

I'm busy, happy and OK-just talked so much last week that I'm in a non-communicative mode at the moment.

Friday, November 28, 2008

No matter what you choose

The body eventually gives out, and with it the spirit.  I'm exhausted and I want everyone to leave so I can take a nap....and I'm sure there are millions of others in the US who feel the same way.

And, I refuse to feel guilty because "we only get to see each other once a year"....."some people don't have families".....because none of that makes my aching bones and jangled nerves feel any better.

It's like the old saying-don't go away mad, just go away.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thinner Still

Wow
Chaos
Kids, Old People, Food
Heaven or Hell-it's pretty much what you decide it is.

I'm choosing heaven-I've seen hell and it wasn't for me.

Gratitude and Love and Sleep on Friday Night

Let's just say I suck totally at sitting back and letting other people's failure to plan
Blow up in their face
But damn, I'm good in the trenches under fire

And for that I'm Thankful.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Deja Vu-oooooh

Beam Me Up Scotty: Shit  was the title of last year's Thanksgiving entry.  I really didn't need to look it up to remember what was going on last year.  Poor dear Uncle John didn't even know what the event was (dinner at his assisted living center) and shortly thereafter he was moved to the hospital and then the nursing home.  This Thanksgiving he's trying to die and will soon succeed.  I got a call Tuesday night that he had a fever and I had to decide whether or not to give antibiotics or not-antibiotics is not "extra ordinary" and I ordered them given.

His fever is down and he's resting, but it is not likely he'll wake up with any meaningful interaction and one day he won't wake up.  And selfishly (although he's in no pain) I prayed "Please don't die till after Thanksgiving"....because I have a huge amount of food and two old people who have placed bets on whether or not I'll really pull this lunch (that I didn't want to do) off.  Because I'm trying to redeem myself for being "antisocial" last Thanksgiving.  I'm just barely dealing with all the holiday pressure and arranging a funeral on top of that is just way too much.....so rest my dear, but please don't go.

How awful and how trivial of me to even think that way about someone I do dearly love.  And if he were in pain, I wouldn't even have the thought.  But I am one, finite being, since I haven't mastered the infinite all that well, and I can't be a hostess and an aunt and a executrix.  I AM human, and I do have needs too.  How bizarre is that to be planning the seating arrangements and get a casual call that amounts to "let him live or let him die?".

The antibiotics issue was one we left open at hospice, but faced with it, I had no doubt that I am not capable of issuing a death order (with hold them).  Which is strange, because I support euthanasia, but I cannot support inaction, though the result is the similar.
 
Today my brother and I will go visit and we will ponder questions of our own mortality-then go pick up tomorrow's Turkey and Ham and Pie.

Somewhere Uncle John knows I'm really not being selfish, just spread too thin and I really think he'll wait for me.  But if he doesn't, I'll understand too.

Two Thanksgivings ago it was just he and I in Dallas-we ate a lot and watched Emperor of the North and the football game....that's the one I will remember when all the fuss is over.

Animal Wednesday-Oliver Observes




I quite understand the obsession with possessions. I do not like it when someone messes with my toys, my toilet paper rolls or my food. BWAK. The nerve. But really-magazines and tv shows full of humans telling other humans what to do with all your stuff? Madness. If you need someone to tell you how to manage your stuff, maybe you have too much stuff.

And then this thing-this Thanksgiving where you kill a big old bird, eat a lot of food (well, I can relate to eating-though not of fowl) and give THANKS for your stuff....but the entire month before you bitch and moan about the upcoming ordeal. Put out some bird seed and if the other humans don't like it maybe they'll leave early. When I don't want anyone around me I squawk and click my beak. If that doesn't work, a good nip usually gets the point across.

Or maybe you want them around....but you don't want them around? How can this be? Humans are so very strange. And you are always muttering about needing to finish-finish what? What will you do when you finish? How will you know when you ARE finished? Good grief humans, get a grip and dance a little more, squawk and click your beaks.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Why bother?

I bought myself some flowers
To cheer up my day
And sent them to you instead
You didn't see the blooms
You didn't see the gesture
And neither day was cheered

What a fucking waste.

Never Comes a Time

Never comes a time
At least while I'm alive
Where all projects are done
Why pretend otherwise?

So much pretending
Gets in the way of living.
So much guilt
Gets in the way of living.

Keep the cobwebs
Sweep away the lie
My mother has a perfect house
And no real life beyond those walls.

Not for me, not for me.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Cactus Monday Christmas Cactus




I bought this for Cactus Monday several weeks ago and just got around to doing something with it. Better late than never-Happy Cactus Monday.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

What may be

What may be may be
Or may not be at all
Only what is is for certain
And nothing about that is certain either
Perspective can change the past in a blink
And what may be may be
Or may not be at all

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Why?

Why on earth would you want to pick a fight?
Relieve your boredom or your stress some other way.
I don't want to play those games.
Not today.
Let's step beyond our appointed roles.
Our parents have never left the houses they were born in,
but I have.
And when I come to visit
I come now as I am
not as I was.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Which is it?

Am I breaking down completely or just finally figuring it out. I really can't be sure, but then again, can anyone? What I care about seems to be diverting into what I truly CARE about, and not what anyone else thinks I should focus upon. Am I going completely mad, or stone cold sane?

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Happy Birthday Mom

Today is Mom's birthday-we are going to lunch so she can get a slice of sugar free coconut pie. Our family doesn't "fuss: but woe unto those who forget.....I think it would have been easier (and still be easier) if we'd had real traditions that we'd acknowledged. That's the maddening part of my family-we DO have things we do, but we don't acknowledge them, they are never expected, unless they are missed. AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGH

You can go overboard on the traditions, but really, if nothing matters, but it secretly does matter, is it any wonder that I'm confused?

Mom will enjoy her lunch, insisting the entire time it really isn't necessary. In the past I've often felt silly for insisting we do something-but now I know that it really IS necessary, so I won't feel silly.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Animal Wednesday-Oliver gets a new Roommate

We'll start slow-what can it BE? A box arrived-I called out "what you doing?" and the woman answered "Waiting for my snake"


Then she was opening the box and ooing and cooing-it was foul-only it most certainly was NO FOWL. It seems fairly well behaved, but at the moment it appears to weigh more than the biggest dog. There is a lock on the cage-it seems that I enjoy opening doors and this would be a bad door to open.

Now for a riddle-What is sweet and wonderful and makes the most awesome hissssssssy sound? Hmmmmm? Not that snake, I can tell you that much! It's a new thing called Reddi Whip. The woman puts it on some of the things she eats, and I love it too. She gave me a little of it tonight, so I forgive her for the new life form.


(But she better not name him Oliver-there are far too many Oliver's in this house already)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

New Beauty!



My friend Sue's new sweetie-a Tibetan Terrier named Sadie. I can't wait to have a cuddle with this little love. I couldn't wait till Animal Wednesday (and Oliver doesn't like to be upstaged)

Monday, November 17, 2008

Happy Birthday To Me

It's my birthday. I never know what to do or feel on "the day". Celebrations are awkward at best in my family and I suck at being the center of attention. I'll go to Mom's for lunch-it's bean day, and I just asked for beans so as not to disrupt anyone's eating schedule. I like beans, and can eat them scheduled or unscheduled.

I really am 48 now-I always think of my age as whatever the ending digit of the current year is, so by the time it actually arrives, I'm pretty used to the number. Maybe I'll suspend that at 50 and spend a good long time at 49. Or not. The closer it gets, the less it bothers me. 40 was a huge disappointment-I woke up expecting to feel "different" and.......nothing. Same old me, new day.

I've been married, raised a child, so I don't have any of those female deadlines hovering over me. Pretty much all that's left is just to die, and I think I'll take my time on that one. I tell friends that have either not been married or raised children that they haven't missed a lot, but they don't believe me. I think we all need things to define ourselves, and one of those things is "what we didn't get." That's pretty sad when you think about it.

Maybe we should define ourselves by what we got, or what we are going to do, or what color your coffee was this morning-anything but the empty spaces. Definition by emptiness just doesn't compute, does it? Maybe that's why we get so bogged down in it-defining emptiness is a pretty endless process. It's pretty futile too.

I think that's how clutter happens-we try to fill the empty spaces with things. The things become "ours, us" and we don't see beyond them. Then we sit, surrounded by things we don't see, and stare at that empty space-and never see the bright and beautiful world beyond.

Fortunately (geeze, I can't end with a downer on my birthday)....the bright and beautiful world remains, waiting only for a change of perspective. In my case, that usually comes in the undeniable truth of a parrot who loves to make farting noises. The truth is, none of this matters much, and Oliver toots often and loud to remind me of that. Crass, yes, but the truth will set you free.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Resurrection

I had intended to show Lily, my merle chihuahua, but it turned out she's deaf and at that point I threw up my hand and said "enough". Rescued a few dogs, bought one.

Now, back up-I have no idea why I want to go to a conformation show-I love agility, I like obedience (rally is fun), fly ball is interesting. But it was the conformation ring I read stories about growing up (Big Red, Marguerite Henry).

Now Moon, I bought for photography and agility and herding. The show ring does not really like smoothies or merles, and I don't know that a smoothie merle has ever won anything. But dang it, that little dog is as correct a little dog as there is. He has some dogs in his lineage that have done well in both conformation and herding (and both of them are smoothies). So, we are adding gait training to his routine.

I will get the experience of training a dog for the breed ring, Moonie gets more tasks to learn that don't involve taxing his joints before he quits growing.....and he'll be intact and eligible for the ring till at least next June.....and he'll get experience in a trialing environment.

Part of me is horrified that I would take such a fine working dog and put him in a beauty contest. But another big part of me thinks I've gotten so tied up in doing the right and proper thing that I never do anything much at all.

Our criteria for success is not going to be ribbons-but if we show well and correctly and both have fun.

Rastafeatherans!

I got a lovely card in the mail from Lolo....it really picked up my day. It featured a lovely African Grey parrot and Oliver approved of it heartily. In fact, he was so inspired he demanded his bath be drawn immediately!

I feel bad. I have a pair of shoes and some other miscellaneous goodies I've picked up to mail to people in my life-and I just haven't had the energy to have a packing off to the post office day. I think I need to work on that. Resting is fine, crawling into a hole and pulling the dirt over you-maybe not such a good idea.

Lolo-I love it.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

The Elusive Audio

I figured out how to dub/voice over-so I thought I'd take a video of oliver I already had, wipe out MY voice (since he won't talk when I'm in the room) and SNEAK up on him and get an actual video/voice of the great Oliver. The great Oliver is so pleased with the arrangements (his favorite reggae station AND feathered phonics) he's sitting silently making his contented snoring noise....so now I will have to leave the room and wait till he misses me enough to get vocal-THEN come back in and hit record.

It's cracking me up-he has no idea why he's the center of attention, but he's so pleased he's going to snore and chuckle and NOT make a sound loud enough to pick up.

And I'm experimenting with vocalization as real communication, not a trained response.....so I can't pull out the pignolias. As far as the experiment, when Oliver really wants to be near me, he'll start talking in my voice or howling like a wolf or calling out "what you doing?". What you doing is a responsive game-I usually call back "I'm picking my nose" or something and he laughs.....You have to go beyond the words to understand the game. He really wants to know "are you there" and when I respond he's happy that I responded. I doubt that many people will want to learn our language....LOL, it is a bit convoluted.

What's interesting-is that he uses vocalizations when he wants to find me or talk to the dogs or whatever. If he just wants to go the living room he flies down the hall to his perch. He's only caged at night or when I'm going to be out for awhile. For the most part he's honorable, although he has a crayola marker in his cage right now that no one is sure how it got there.....it's non toxic and it makes him happy-it's a prized possession, so I can't bear to take it away from him-although I do pick it up and admire it because it makes him happy to show off his marker. His sense of self, his idea of "mine" is similar to ours, but not quite as materialistic.

Wow (Gross) and Stuff

Ok, I had something happen that I'd heard about, and believed, but had never had it happen to me before-something I ate a couple of days ago, returned, and got stuck firmly in my stoma (the small hole made by the lap band). I mean stuck, well and good-nothing goes in, nothing comes out and yes it hurt. After producing slimey saliva (called sliming) for a couple of hours, walking around, heating pad, I was able to give a mighty heave and dislodge the offending particle.

Of course, I looked to see what had caused the issue-and there was a piece of bacon from a few days ago. (I don't eat bacon even close to every day, so I knew when the last time I had eaten bacon was). My friend Sue had the same thing happen wth a mushroom once. LIttle bastard just hung out in her digestive tract and waited for its chance.

It doesn't happen often, and I've finally gotten the chewing of the food properly down, but apparently I had a slip up. It was weird cause I've been trouble free for some time, but chewing rules still apply and apparently not all karma is instant.

I know I've lost 91 pounds and I am pretty sure I've dropped a few since I last weighed-I think I'll weigh next week and see. There is a lot of work still to be done (headwise) and that is something I never addressed before-I just lost weight and then tried to forget I was ever heavy. I've got a loose, but close (if that makes sense) support group of women who are in varying stages of weight loss, and we are all very open and honest about the head parts of it-because we all believe it's the head that messed us up in the beginning.

I am pretty diligent in looking out for surgical anorexia/bulemic behaviors/attitudes. Give a fat girl a tool to lose weight, and some don't know when to stop. The press tends to blame the surgeons, and I don't-not really. It's all a choice we make. I know as things heat up in the WLS market, bariatric surgeons and plastic surgeons are teaming up, and that makes me a little uncomfortable-because they are selling the magazine image instead of health.

I was gung ho on plastics-that's one of the reason's why I was banded in Mexico, to save enough money to ice the cake so to speak. Now, I'm really not. And funny as it may seem, it's not the money or the frivolity of it-it's the pain factor. A lower body lift (the holy grail of all plastics) plus boob job means 6 weeks of sitting still and feeling like shit while you do it. Now, I could write for 6 weeks and that would be great-but who would work my dogs, take care of my snakes, carry Oliver around and do his bidding? I could hire someone to live in and take care of me-and that would suck too. And for what-a picture worthy tummy?

I think it would be different if I had medical issues that could be addressed. I have friends who do, and I understand the need. But I just don't need it. What is that saying? "A body isn't something to treat like a treasure, instead you should barrel through life, skid sideways into the grave and say "woooo, what a ride!"

Friday, November 14, 2008

Here Comes the Cold......

Ok, it's going to hit 35, that isn't really THAT bad, but it's not 50. Brrrrrrrr. I was lying awake this morning watching the clock, waiting for a certain time to get up. I heard Oliver stir in his cage, stretch and the call out with a big "wooooooooooooooo". His cage is covered, he's in the dark, and he doesn't need anyone to tell him when it's OK to get up and shout. I really think he's smarter than I am.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

What we all need to learn

Is that the world goes on-really. Breakdown if you need to-it will be there when you get back. It might not even know you were gone. For someone like me, who feels sometimes the weight of the world rests on my shoulders-that is a comforting thought, not a depressing thought.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Animal Wednesday-Tiger by the Tail



Hullo hullo hullo. What you doing? I've been quite busy this past week, I have discovered the joys of cheese, and now insist upon the addition of cheese to my diet each day. Calcium is important to us all. The dogs in the picture certainly do NOT get to feast on cheese-look at the impertinent youth chomping on the lovely tail of the elder. SQWUAAAAAAAK. Kids today. Woe unto the infidel that would pull my lovely red tail-I'd give them a face full of beaks of steel!

While I have been busy, I'm never too busy to stop and dance a bit if the music hits me, or to stop and nibble on some cheese in mid dance if the human walks by with some. Remember not to let what you are doing keep you from what you could be doing......hugs and kisses-Oliver the Parrot.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Friday, November 7, 2008

Ever onward

Through the slush
The blinding snow
Mush Mush Mush
Ever onward we go

I gave my permission to move Uncle John to a non-lock down ward-since he can't walk he's not a flight risk. It made me sad and I don't know why-nothing has really changed and truthfully, he won't likely even realize he's in a different room. Maybe that is my job-to be sad for him, since he can't be sad for himself. Or maybe, just maybe, no one should be sad at all.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

I've enjoyed my cold

No, not the snot, the coughing, the fever and chills. But I've enjoyed, oh so much, my solitude and not feeling like I HAVE to produce something or do something. I've just lazed around, watched movies, sipped Gatorade and taken lots of naps. It was, in it's own way, heaven.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

HAW FEED ME SEE-MORE



This was a mushroom I took for Mim and promptly forgot about. HAW Mim!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Tuesday

I feel kind of bad (but not too bad, it's just a blog) about how inconsistent I have been lately in posting. So I am going to write this on Sunday night to go out Tuesday morning since I'm spending tomorrow (Monday) on the road with both my parents looking at the leaves. Tuesday I've got to find my voter registration card, go vote, pick up the cat who has been at the vet and recover from an 8 hour or more drive with my parents, sort out grumpy animals who are not used to being left alone all day, etc. etc.

Our human ability to see the future is both a blessing and a curse, isn't it? I've just given you a synopsis of my next two days for you to read as a recap two days from now. No wonder I never know what fucking day it is.

I haven't posted much because I just haven't felt, well, "chatty" and I don't know if that is a good thing or a bad thing. I did spontaneously conceive and create Senita's Opera......and I don't know if that is a good thing or a bad thing, but it was fun. When scene one, the Spanish tableau with rose rocks, Fiesta Ware and the parrot resulted in a near seizure on behalf of the bird, I said "screw it" and just went with what worked for all of us. Then I discovered the caption function on Youtube.

I'm just running on blind stupid faith right now. I don't know why I am here or what I'm supposed to be doing (and just in case anyone is so inclined, I don't want to be TOLD the answer, so if you think you know, shut the fuck up). I have a few ideas kicking around in my head, but nothing just seizes me with desire to go out and do it. Once upon a time I would just pick one and run, because life is short, yadda yadda. Now I think, life is short, why bother rushing? If it ends before you are done, so what? Watching Uncle John has taught me that it is far worst NOT to end before you are done.

Geeze, this so out of synch with the world, because when YOU read this it will be in the midst of one of the most exciting political events in our nation's history and my Sunday night musings will seem trivial, as they are. So here, on Sunday night, I'm putting this out into the Universe-PLEASE let it be Obama.......

I know it's not rational, because I don't actually know that other person/persons-but they have become the embodiment of everything that has ever oppressed me. That might not be all that irrational come to think about it-they ARE the embodiment of most things that have oppressed me. And I really need to see someone NOT like THEM to win the top spot. Cause, then I'll know, that there are more like me than not....and I think that might make me feel better.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Cactus Monday=Senita's Wedding





From our house to yours dearest Senita-Happy Cactus Monday.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Cold Medicine Dreams

I took some cold medicine and a nap the other day. I dreamed I had my eyes surgically altered to match Moon's (one blue, one brown). My family was appalled (in my dream).

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Thursday

Drive by entry....((((waves)))))

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

HAW-HAW-HAW



Oliver has decided to start a movement. Reggae, Ska and Pignolias for all mahn!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

A Happy Ending



Pappi, now Tucker, is the newly pampered pet of Beth, a high school senior. Not all dogs end up at the right place at the right time, in fact, most of them don't....but I really needed a happy ending, and apparently so did this little guy.

I can say now, I almost just put my dogs up so he'd move on because my head and heart and pocketbook just didn't want to end up with another orphan. I'm tired and I'm jaded and I just want someone to look after ME for a change. But LOOK at this happy little guy. And I needed to be reminded that sometimes, good does come of not turning away.

I crack up in the Lord of the Rings where Pippin looks at the gazing ball thingy and the other hobbit says "YOU ALWAYS HAVE TO LOOK"....that's me.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Happy Cactus Monday



Well, this is Moon and his father SAGE (kind of a cactus name) and I saw a huge prickly pear on the way out yesterday, but didn't have time to turn around and take a picture. Then got around tons of dogs, goats and fun people, and lost track of time. Ended up in Arkansas at one point, took a right on I-40 and made it home. The parrot was listening to Bob Marley and screaming "woo yah mahn" when I drove up-so it was a happy home coming. And something I really needed.

HCM

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Day Out

I'm taking Pappi to his new home in Westville Oklahoma. We'll be accompanied by Moonie-because his new home is a breeder associated with Moonies breeder-and actually his father, Sage will be there. It will be fun to see how Moonie stacks up with his kin, and he'll probably enjoy being around other border collies.

As for me, I m very much looking forward to day outside.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Woof Woof Woof

Greta is barking about something and Oliver the Parrot is fussing at her. I have a bit of a cold and Moonie got his big boy shots today. The vet (a substitute vet) pissed me off. I'm driving Pappi-the stray, to his new home tomorrow-will probably see some pretty leaves and certainly some pretty dogs (he's going to a border collie breeder I know-Paps make good agility dogs and her daughter is going off to college next year.....so hopefully it will all work out).

I'm looking at the giant snake segment Lolo mentioned....that is one old snake. Fluffy, the retic at the Ohio zoo (and formerly a resident of OKC) is, in a word, too fat. OK , two words. The snake on TV looks to be a good girth for one that size. A snake facility is an odd place-and probably nightmarish to someone who doesn't like snakes, but I always enjoy a visit to a well kept one. A snake brain isn't like a human brain, any more than a birds is, or a dogs-but there is something going on in there, somewhere. Snakes really don't have warm fuzzy thoughts, but they do have thoughts.

I was watching a taped version of "Change your Brain, Change your Life" and during the first segment the fellow was saying that the human brain had more connections than stars in the universe. I find that hard to believe that a finite form could be larger than an infinite form. I think that's just a human centric assertion-and one that can't be proven. For some reason, that statement really annoyed me. Maybe it's cause I have a cold.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

HAW-HAW-HAW

Blogger refuses to upload a picture, so I am declaring the video post below my entry for Animal Wednesday because it's late and I have a headache from all the walls I've bashed into today already. Hmmmm, is throwing a HISSY FIT an animal wednesday kind of thing? If I could, I would just bray like a donkey right now-that's pretty much how I feel.....so HAW HAW HAW EEEE HAW

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Moon Video Debut

Oliver Speaks a Day Early

I am not a human.  I do not have calendars and I do not think it makes any sense to wait until a thing called Animal Wednesday in order to be heard.  I protested this all morning, therefore my anal retentive human has relented and I will now speak to you.

Things are changing in this house.  The human is moving furniture, hauling out things, hauling in things.  I do approve of the shiny cage (it's a chain link fence) she erected to keep the animals nearer to the house.  I will miss the workers-I enjoyed supervising them.

I'm spending many of my days in the castle cage on the sun porch.  From this vantage point I can supervise the dogs and the human.  My CD player has been moved out there so that I can listen to my music.

I do like my sleeping cage though-it's cozy at night and the human puts a "blanket" over it and we play a "night night" game.

The human replaced my Hello Yellow Telephone with a similar but not the same device.  Why she did this, I don't know.  I would really prefer my Hello Yellow, and I miss calling the Blue Kitty, but I am adaptable and I will make do.

Now, did your world shift on it's axis at ALL because I spoke on Tuesday?  Too bad if it did, you folks need to lighten up with the schedule thing.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Crappy Phone pics of the Papillion

He's a little fresh with Lily.
But he's cute.

Cactus Monday-Prickly Pears

The prickly pears are in full purple fruit around here-but I've learned my lesson.  Picking them can be quite painful.  Sometimes the hispanic groceries carry prickly pear fruits-that's a safer bet.

Sometimes though, I'd like to run naked through the prickly pears and let the thorns peal off this skin and reveal whatever is underneath.  Snakes get cranky when they shed their skin, but it seems that human beings must bleed to shed theirs.  I wonder when we as a species lost the ability to change without pain?  It doesn't seem like a very good adaptation.

Happy Cactus Monday Cactuteers-remember to miss the thorns if you can!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Friday, October 17, 2008

Things As They Are

Seeing things as they are, and not as we want them to be, is so very tedious
It would be nice if this were all part of some larger cosmic hokey pokey
And maybe it is
But I suspect there is much more random chance than Divine Design
More Fractured than Fractals.
Zombies seem to enjoy the notion that someone else pulls the strings
I think the land mines were randomly set
For whoever comes along
I'd hate to believe 
My own personal holocaust
Was pre ordained

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Things I love

Bugger

I can't be on moderation for someone else's venom.  It's clogging up the flow of my blog.  Please ignore any comments from the rainmaker, do not comment and do not visit him.  I will delete them when I can as soon as I can, but I'm not going to worry about it any longer.  The world is just full of people waiting to piss on your parade, and it only works if you let them.

If you don't feed the negativity, it usually goes elsewhere to pick a fight with someone who WILL fight with it, and thus feed it.

Just to be clear, all posts by said downer will be removed.  I am not even going to give thought to whether or not it is a valid point-I simply do not want this person hanging around.  For my part, I will not comment on any comments on any other person's blog where I may encounter this being.  In effect, it will be a self imposed "block" button until blogger comes up with one of its own.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Animal Wednesday-Oliver Speaks

Humans of the Blogosphere Rejoice
I am here among you now.  The anal retentive one who takes care of me insists I wait for the day designated as "Animal Wednesday" to share my wisdom with you.  I shall indulge her as she indulges me with pignolias and peanuts and paper tubes to shred.  

I have lived among your kind since arising from my egg, THE egg for me, AN egg for you.  You human folk seem to turn my into THE quite often, don't you?  As a creature of the flock the progression for me goes my -------->one of many and then stops.  As a creature of the mind, your flow is more like my ----------->THE ONLY......then tries to eradicate all others.  

You have an amazing range of sounds and vocalizations, but tend to move quickly from one "word" to another without pausing to contemplate the nuances of each one.  I spend the morning in meditation, considering the richness of tone and scale in a single world..."hello".

We are so alike, yet so different, and I believe we have much to learn from each other.  I hope to be given the opportunity to speak again to you.  ****************FART***************

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Twilight

Watching Uncle John slowly die is one of the hardest things I've ever had to do. He told me yesterday he was in the midst of a great transition, that this place is not a permanent place and he was preparing to go to a more suitable location. The ravings of a dying old man, or the absolute truth?

I realize now, and the end of this phase, that I was NOT being lazy by not writing every moment down-instead I was living it to the fullest extent, and will recall what I need when I need it. I'm glad I had that little bit of insight-it gave me some comfort.

I feel such guilt-because he did ask for help when (in my opinion) he was in his right mind and could have made a decision to go easily. The pain of feeling responsible for his suffering is unbearable at times. Logically, I know I didn't give him Parkinson's. Logically, I know I took this task on myself. Logic logic logic-it's so cold, colder than the grave. The grave seems warm and quiet, with no shaking or tremors or fear.

Death does not frighten me-this living half life I see in front of me scares the bloody hell of out me. And sometimes I wonder what good I do anyone by not looking away-why I feel compelled to witness it. I'm pretty much on auto-pilot with this one-doing what I feel moved to do, blindly feeling my way along the dark cave walls with the tips of my fingers. But at least I'm feeling the walls, not stumbling around in the dark crying for help.

Of course, that is where the spiders hang out. (I'm sorry Teri, I couldn't resist, and thinking of you shivering just then made me laugh out loud my friend).

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Cactus Monday

I always think of this song every Sunday (before Cactus Monday). Enjoy.

Happy Cactus Monday Cactuteers

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Back on Moderation

Sorry guys, I am going back on comment moderation because I don't want my blog used as a platform for an angry old man to vent a bunch of crap and venom.

I am annoyed because moderation messes up the comment flow-people can't comment on the comments until I post them. But there is no way I'm going to filter my life or what's going on it it, around somebody else's approval, especially someone who seems to universally disapprove of everyone and everything.

I do enjoy being challenged and I like a lively debate. I feel sorry for people who have reached a point in life where saying "no" to someone is the only power they feel they have, but I do not have the patience to indulge such people.

Go away. Do not come back, or if you do, do not comment. I am not interested in what you have to say. Split. Vamoose. Via Con Dios. Be GONE! Go. GET! Don't let the door hit you on the ass on the way out.

I know there are a zillion other ways to say it-but you get the general idea, I hope.

Expresso-ing Myself

Last night, after dinner with friends I went to Ross and bought one of those stove top expresso maker-they've always fascinated me. I think they are related to the pressure cooker though-I finally bought one of THOSE last year and still haven't summoned the courage to use it. Explosions unnerve me (because my brother painted contact explosives on a fence when I was 6). Ok-ok-it's true he did do that, but I think I just don't like bangs and flying projectiles in general.

I also got a wire wine rack so I can take the wine out of the cabinet in the kitchen-I need cabinet space and a 7.00 rack beats a new cabinet all to heck....

And a wire vase to paint and use for my new floral arrangement. Other than dumping fresh flowers in a vase, I don't believe I've actually arranged florals before. But I wanted something nice for Thanksgiving Dinner (what was I thinking?) and I really wanted to do it myself. Of course, now it's taken on a life of it's own-you'll just have to wait and see-but there is a good chance it will be as tall as I am by the time I'm done.....LOL. Which means, in my household, proper materials are key, or something so heavy the dogs can't knock it over......art meets engineering and german safety design.

It's been a sad-ish week. Hospice says it's time to make arrangements for John, and when I called all kinds of red tape arose surrounding cremation. In the end, it looks like a military burial is going to be his final rest or whatever they call it. My father helped me with some of it, and I know it was hard for him, but knowing what an elderly gentlemen who didn't leave instructions would want is just the pits. Now Daddy is leaning towards the military burial too. I don't care what he chooses, I just want him to choose something. I have trouble ordering dinner, deciding on someone's eternal resting place is a lot to ask.

The funny thing is, I don't care what they do with me. But John and my parents are of an era where those things mattered, and I want to honor them as best I can. That's partly what love is I think, going out of your way for thing that don't matter to you but matter to someone else you care about.

The parrot has taken up opera singing, and in the afternoon the neighborhood around my house sounds like a den of carnal pleasure. It's even funnier when he mixes dog training and opera....goes something like aaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh 0hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh yeeesssssssss Good JOb!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Bit of a Gargoyle

I decided to refine my latte habit and instead drink good old 7-11 coffee, no cream, in the 99 cent refill reusable mug. Two days of that and I was puking acid (yes, brew really IS stronger than expresso) and have a rash even on my ears!

So, yesterday was no caffeine at all and lots of water and about 2 am this morning I woke up wanting to rip out every tooth in my head it hurt so bad. At 7 I crawled into a truck and went to Starbucks. I'm going back in a few minutes-not trusting my own brew to this critical situation.

I think I'm just going to have to suck it up and learn to make expresso.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Animal Wednesday

HAW!!!!! Nothing to give this morning, but wanted to wish you all a HAW anyway.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Letting Go

Why does one door opening always involve another closing? Why do we always have to choose and why do I dare complain when I have so much to choose from and others have so little?

I really really want to train a therapy dog-and in order to make the time, space, I am going to have to thin down my pack. I have decided that Moon will stay for sure and I'm just opening it up to the Universe to provide good homes for my other friends....or not. (if not, they stay here). So, while I'm really not actively rehoming them, I'm letting myself be open to the possibility. Beyond that, I am not going to try to specify what happens, just wait and see.

*****shiver*****I hate the unknown, I really really do.

Cheer for Yourself

Stand up right now and give yourself a cheer-clap your hands, stomp your feet. Yayyyyyyy YOU! Use your best encouraging voice---gooooooood girl (or boy)....gooooooooood, goooooooooood, yessssssssssssssss!

Ok, now tell me what happened.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Guilt

Is it enough to feel grateful for what we have?
What purpose does guilt serve?
Once upon a time I thought that was my conscience, my "guilty conscience", but now I think it has nothing to do with conscience or remorse and everything to do with fear.
Perhaps guilt is fear, after the fact.
That's pretty pointless, isn't it?

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Saturday

Spent the day hosing down cages. Started with one and just kept going. I got Oliver the parrot a "sleeping cage" which I will keep in the bedroom, and move his big cage out to the front of the house. As it is now, he doesn't spent a lot of time IN his big cage in the back of the house-he likes to be out and about with the rest of us. BUT-he must go to bed far earlier than we do-so he couldn't sleep in the front of the house. So I got him a little travel cage and a cage cover so I could read in my own bed at night.

He was on board with the whole thing till I wheeled his big cage out (he was on top of HIS new cage with new toys and gloating....).

It will be interesting to see how he reacts when he wakes up in the morning (and when I go to bed tonight-he usually opens one eye, says "hello" and goes back to sleep. Ah, change.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Slipstream posted her sign's spin on the Mercury retrograde from this website.

Here is mine:

Scorpio and Scorpio Ascendant: All Mercury retrograde cycles particularly affect you in terms of communications with friends or groups, as well as intimate communications and shared financial resources, because Mercury rules these areas of your life. It would be wise to be especially clear when it comes to financial transactions and personal communications with friends, or, better yet, take this time to re-budget or rethink your plans instead of taking premature action. Group meetings may be postponed or cancelled, and friends may seem distant or confused. Occurring in your solar twelfth house this time, extra care should be exercised when it comes to your own intuition. You may find that you are less able to rely on your intuition. Perhaps you're picking up the wrong cues or reading too much into situations. Whatever the case may be, for the time being, you may not feel that your intuition is serving you well. Be as non-judgmental as you can, but do keep an eye out for deceptiveness and falseness in others. It would be wise to be especially clear when it comes to communicating about your inner world now; or take this time to re-examine issues rather than communicating about them prematurely.


I thought we could do a bloggy astrology show and tell.

Hmmm, what do I want to say

What do I want to say today
To be read tomorrow
That's always a mind bender for me.  My mind is easily bent.

Moon is in the kitchen in an X pen getting a dose of sounds-the Parrot is talking and playing with his Young Einstein singing phone.  The cat is on a cabinet staring at him.  It's a lot for a young dog to take in I suppose.

Out of the blue, my aunt dropped by with a cute dog purse.  I can't remember the last time that someone just brought me something cause they thought I'd like it-it felt pretty good.   Well, yes actually I do-I mean in real life, not from the blogosphere.  In real life people tend to give me things they think I should have (if I were more like them).

Moon is struggling with an age old conundrum-the house Xpen is a shorty-meaning he can, with some effort, climb out.  But, just because you can doesn't mean you should.

All the dogs have varying difficulties with the concept that they are locked up and someone else is not.  Mostly Moon's problem is just that he's an undisciplined puppy and the cat is happily tormenting him.

A dog's whine always triggers the "bad man's voice" in Oliver.  He's being very harsh now, then yelping after he punishes the long ago dog-Slim.  Poor Slim must've gotten hell.  I always wish him well when Oliver goes through his dog training bit.

Shit, I forgot to time the temper tantrum and now Moon is asleep.  It doesn't matter I suppose, each incident (for a dog) is new.  Moon is rapidly hitting early teenage hood, and that is always a joy.  Oliver (the dog) was/is probably the easiest teenage dog I've ever worked with.  Moonie is independent enough to raise the bar to a whole new level.  Heaven help us.

My horoscope today reads "It's a good time to go looking for inspiration.  You may want to check out your old standbys, but it's a better bet to seek it in places you've never tried before.  Things are getting more interesting by the day".   That wouldn't be hard to do-I've been kind of wrapped up in a shawl of despair lately.   I've tried acknowledging and accepting it-and now despair and I just sort of sit and look at each other and think "what's next?"

Until I figure that part out I do stuff like have cement pads poured on the side of the house (for a dog run, half grass, have cement, I LOVE IT already) and teach my dog how to open doors and turn on lights.  And sometimes I curse myself cause I still look for that pony under the pile of shit.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Dreamavsion

The corridor of time stretched out before us, long and gloomy and rather dusty.  Time and dust seem to go together, perhaps because time makes dust of us all.  The no bodies thing is kind of nice, my knees don't hurt, Mom and Uncle John are not old.  But the fear we all feel-that is real and now and not dusty or old either.

I call for reinforcements and Oliver the parrot, Moon and the blood pythons appear.  Because it's MY dreamavision, Mom and Uncle John are not frightened by them, they probably don't even know they are there.  Oh, now I get it it, part of the rules.  I am the consciousness, but I'm sharing their memories.  Cool beans, now we'll get to the bottom of all this, because at the end of the corridor lies...dum dum dum (Oliver intones helpfully)....the Crux of the Matter.

Holding hands with hands that don't exist, we gather our courage and walk through the creaking door.  No one has bodies, so the term walk works for those of us who waddle and who don't have legs.  Ok, we did not walk-we, our spirit selves, moved through the door, which didn't creak but opened silently.

And there sat the Horrible Crux......Mom and John's father wasn't a very nice man, he didn't have a job they understood or maybe not one at all, and they were poor and embarrassed about it.

Uncle John, Mom and the Horrible Crux vanish, leaving me only with my anger and disbelief.

"That is fucking it?  IT?  All there is?"

I work up a righteous anger, that turns suddenly into laughter.  I've been looking and brooding for months for the terrible gloom that hangs over us all, trying to understand it so I can fight it.  And I've been looking for things that would scare and bother me in THEIR past.

Even when people tell you things about their lives, we all still tend to see them through our own eyes and experiences.  I suddenly understood why my parents could not understand how lost I was when the snakes died last year.  And, I finally got it that when Mom looks at Moon, she truly sees an ugly dog-really she does.  My spirit dog wags his tail and I smile at him.  For an instant, a cur dog rises behind him like a puff of smoke-another's vision manifests-one that I reject.

"Still, I thought there'd be more."

"Not YOUR fears, only YOUR dream" Oliver intones and shoves his face into mine so that I see his beak and his beady eye surrounded by reptilian scales.

"How come no one else is talking?" I ask.

Oliver sighs and cocks his head, giving me his best patient look.  "I'm the only parrot".

So, Boogey Men are specific to each individual.  What cripples one person or molds their entire life course only does so if they let it.  But ponder this.  If Mom hadn't been embarrassed about her poor shiftless Dad, hidden in 50's domesticity and never emerged-where would I be?  Who would I be, hell what would I be?  In the middle of a different dream I suppose.

Mom asked me today "What did you DO all day?" and I answered "I worked" which is so much shorter and sweeter than "I'm not going to tell you so that you can place your own value judgements on how I spend my time."   I wonder if the Crux of the Matter ever felt the same way?

But I am only my own crux, no one else's.  If someone else wants to relegate me to the dark scary room at the end of corridor of time in THEIR dream, that's cool.  But this one is mine and I must learn to see it through my own eyes.

Wow, learning to see my own stuff through my own eyes and other people's stuff through their eyes-is that like a psychic boundary?

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Stolen (from the web) delights





Ligers and Tigons and Elephants, OH MY!  HAW

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Wow

Candid shots  crack me up-my bra strap is hanging out and I never realized how far I could open my mouth. (That's me on the right with some friends).  Sometimes this blog gets a little serious, and I did want to show that I do laugh at times, in fact, that looks pretty much like a guffaw.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Monday


Hah, I used the Mim method and saved this from her blog to my desktop and then to my blog.
Not a cactus, and it IS Cactus Monday.  Guess some days are stones, some days are thorns.  Ok, that is really reaching isn't it?  HCM.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Riddle Me This

How can it change if it stays the same?

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Home

Home
Tired
But a good tired, not a bad tired.
Does that make sense?

Friday, September 26, 2008

Off for a Bit

Short road trip.
Much needed.
Lookin forward to it.
Be back soon.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Don't Forget to Make Time for the Sublime

That phrase just popped in my head, and I liked it well enough to make it a title.  Wonderful phrase, I dub thee a title.  But, it's pretty self explanatory and prattling on about it would be just that-droning on.  Sometimes good titles make for short posts I suppose.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Animal Wednesday

This morning Moonie had to PEE at 6:00 and he wasn't crying wolf-he had that "I gotta PEE NOW" frantic pitch to his bark, so I got up and let him and the rest out.  I admired my new fence and realized no one could see me-the dogs and I were alone.

I looked up and saw the stars for the first time in weeks.  I leaned back against the light post and just stared at them as the sky brightened and the city started up for the day.  The first planes flew in from Dallas and the road sounds started.

Oliver's music came on and played softly through the open window.  I looked at the stars and listened to the music, which was soon accompanied by a "Muwahhahhhhaaaaaaaa Hellloooooooo there!"  So, the dogs peed, the music played, and I stood there in the dark, alone, giggling.  I wish every day could start just like that.

HAW!!!!!!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Superstition

Monica (Sauls dog crazy daughter) and I went along the fence posts and carved names of dogs and such into the cement of the posts.  Saul laughed and admitted that he let Jessica, his other daughter, put her name in the corner post.

I put Dottie's name in one post, along with Prissy.  Monica put her name, and her dogs name (Cookie) in her post.  We put a paw print of Moonie and Cookie on another post.  That bit of voodoo done, I immediately felt better about the whole thing.

Then we talked about how maybe some day someone would come along and unearth the pillars and see the carvings and wonder who all those beings were.