Tag Archives: lizards

Le Tour de France (Just Past Half Way)

Random Thoughts

Le Tour de France.  The toughest bike race in the world.  Twenty-one days of racing, 22 teams, 198 riders risking their lives every day, 4-6 hours every day, averaging 23 – 54 kph (14.3-33.6 mph) depending on terrain, 2,173 miles (3,496.9 Km) total,  and just 2 rest days.

I said it before, I’ll say it again.  Bike racing is the toughest, most grueling sport around.  I love it.

The race first started in 1903.  A couple of nasty wars got in the way so this is only the 99th edition.  It runs from June 30 to July 22 this year.  I could write a novella on what’s happened so far this year, but I’ll leave it to you if you’re interested to read about it here http://www.cyclingnews.com/ .  Go down to Races and Results and under Tour de France you can click on whatever stage you’re interested in.  Want short video Stage Wrap-ups?  Go here: http://nbcsports.msnbc.com/id/42363489/ns/sports-cycling/  Just scroll down to the videos.  And if for some reason you missed signing up to watch the stages live online or at your leisure, there is still time to fork out your $29.95 here:  http://tourdefrance.nbcsports.com/stages/   Just click on ‘Get Access’ in the video square.  You can watch every stage anytime for the next year.

Fun Fact:  There is a Caravan of advertisers that precedes the race start by 2 hours.  Think Macy’s Parade. It costs 150,000 Euros for 3 vehicles.  There can be up to 250 vehicles in groups of five roughly covering 20-24 km (12.4 to 14.9 miles) along with 600 caravaners, 12 gendarmes, 4 traffic motos, and 3 medical vehicles.  They estimate that the advertisers put out about 11 – 16 million pieces of merchandise a year, roughly 3,000 to 5,000 a day, each.  Investment by advertisers can cost 200,ooo to 500,000 Euros.   One total kept by a 1994 advertiser:  170,000 caps, 80,000 badges, 60,000 plastic bags, and 535,ooo copies of their race newspaper.

But what’s really fun?  These vehicles have to be stripped down to street legal every day for the road trip to the next day’s start and then reassembled.  So, too, all the media booths, awards stages, advertising booths, and staging areas for the race.  Every single day.  It’s a small army moving around the country of France for 3 weeks every year.

Life At Our House

Not much to tell here.  Did some shopping and found out that they have all the school supplies out already.  This year I will shop early, I swear!  And I took Spider Bait’s clarinet in to be repaired and cleaned and about passed out when I heard the cost.   Credit card/savings account time!  Yeesh…

Fur Babies and Other Critters

In an effort to keep my lizard from bankrupting me (this is what I get for assuming things…), I am raising crickets.  I’ve had the tub set up for a week or so, but no one was obviously laying eggs in the egg tub.  So I decided to put a ‘ladder’ (toilet paper tube) on the egg tub.  Now the females are fighting each other for good ‘spots’.  I watched one female watch another female dig her hole and when she was done the first female knocked the digger out of the hole and took it herself.  A few more days of egg laying and I’ll move that Cool Whip container into a tub by itself so when the babies hatch the parents won’t eat them.  And, of course, put a new container in for more eggs.

No cats allowed! (They think crickets are yummy, too!)

 Out In The Yard

Our header today is a rose that was here when we moved into this house.  (Ignore the blasted date.  It is my camera’s default setting.  Argh.)

I spotted a Preying Mantis hunting on my window screen over the sink at night but the pictures sucked.  Then, presto!, there it was (or maybe another smart one) on the window at lunchtime.


One of the fun things that happened to me while the boys were away at Boy Scout camp was I fell down the basement steps.  No, I don’t know from how far up.  See, I was carrying boxes of cereal and snacks and stuff down to the pantry, using my chin to balance the load, and my mind was fussing and chewing over other things.  (I really need to stay out of my own head sometimes.)  The next thing I knew, lumpity bumpity,  the world was spinning and there’s pain and, bam!, I’m on the floor looking up at the light.  I think I overshot a step and slipped on the edge, ’cause the last three toes on my left foot felt like I curled them up and jumped up and down on them.  The balls of both feet were unhappy and the joint below my pinky toe on my right foot was really unhappy.  And I must have been an idiot and tried to hold on to the boxes ’cause I had edge bruises on my arms and a deep bruise under my jaw up into my mouth, like maybe a box corner got me, so talking and certain tones of voice were interesting.  But the good news?  I landed on my hip and nothing broke!  So all these years of iffy health haven’t trashed my bones into a bad zone.

Anyway, no walking for awhile.  I was going to try going out today, but was told ‘no’.  Somebody threw up in my shoes.  My one and only pair for walking/running.  *sigh*  I hope the sun is out tomorrow so I can wash them.  It’s too humid to let them dry without help.

Mug of the Day

Another by Marjolein Bastin.  And it’s midnight, so I’m off!

Belated Happy Birthday to America the Beautiful

Random Thoughts

I am a Patriot.  Flawed though I sometimes feel this country is, I would fight to the death to defend it.  We live a very privileged life in this country and quite often we forget that.  No, we’re not perfect and there are so many things that need fixed (why are there still children going to bed hungry here in the Land of Plenty?).  And being Free also means the freedom to be bad and awful.  Still, I would live nowhere else.

The Stars and Stripes flying high is the symbol of our land.  The symbol of our freedom.  The symbol of all the lives given in her defence.  I never fail to get teary eyed when the flag is flown and our anthem played, still, at 52 years of age.

My son found a video by Red Skelton reciting the Pledge of Alligiance.  I love it.  Yes, it dates me.  Yes, there are those who are offended by the ‘under God’ part.  And, actually, those two words were added later.  But it is a reminder of what the flag stands for – The United States of America.   Our America the Beautiful and the people and the freedom it represents.  I’m posting a link to a version that a teacher did for her students with a photo montage that runs while Red Skelton talks.  It’s beautiful.  For those of you with other belief systems, please ignore or substitute.  Old Glory loses none of her meaning or power, whether those two words are there or not.


Life at Our House

So it’s been nearly a month since my last post.  Yeesh.  There’s been migraines, possible food poisoning?, computer issues (thankfully, finally resolved), storm with power outage, graduation parties, Boy Scout camp (1st of two), a heat wave that threatened to cook the computer (I had ice packs under the lap desk fan under the computer just so I could watch the Tour de France), um, The Tour de France is going on, and that nasty old, need to kick its ass to the curb, tomorrow, tomorrow… (didn’t I do a post about this already? *sigh*)  Oh, and should I say it’s 11:00 pm right now?  Must resolve to do better and then do it.  Some highlights:

I got to help shorten our power outage by helping the linemen find an exploded transformer.  Which, by the way, I had been told no longer existed because the new substation down the road was supposed to have replaced it.  Snort.  The  transformer up on the hill in the woods in front of our house had gone out so often and took at least 5 hours to repair each time that I acquired a nice little collection of oil lamps.  Finally, one year when a serious storm came through and really made a mess which required hours of chainsaws just to get to the transformer, they decided to put in the substation down the road.  Well, we’ve had very few problems since then.  Then this storm came through and the non-existent transformer went and put on a major explosive type light show.  Lightning hit the substation.  No power.  Well, my back up battery for the fish tanks was dead (no air for the fish) and I was fretting and decided to go outside with a battery lantern and pot some plants.  So I was there when the linemen came looking for the reason they couldn’t get the power back up.  Sooo, I walked out to the street to one of the men walking behind the truck, pointed straight up, and told him, “It’s on top of the hill about here.”  He looked up and up and asked if there was another way to it.  I told him there were two ways to get there.  One was to go through the yard of the neighbor diagonal to us and follow the lines.  It was the long way in and horribly overgrown because no one comes to keep the line clear.  Which is what usually starts all the problems.  The other way in, the short way, was to climb the hill (it’s steep enough you can reach out with your hand and touch the hill while going up), tie a rope to a tree and toss it down for the others to use to get up while hauling equipment.  “You’re kidding me, right?!” he exclaims.  “Sorry,” I replied.  So he went up the hill with much muttering.  Shortly after that another guy tried the other route with much muttering.  A guy in a bucket truck came by to see what was going on and left, laughing.  They chose to hike the longer less steep route following the lines.  Power came back on not too much later.


So one of the things on the agenda was my nephew’s graduation.  Already?   *sigh*  It was both fun and not fun.  The not fun sent me to the bathroom immediately upon arrival home.  Spider Bait followed the next morning.  Of my group, no one else got sick.  Turns out we were the only two that ate the chicken.  There wasn’t a mass problem at the party, but my son and I have highly sensitive insides.  It sucks sometimes.  For the ‘fun’, my SIL had a photo booth brought in.  I was forced to wear a chicken on my head.  Don’t ask how my son cut me out of the group photo, I have no freakin’ clue.


I did manage some work.  I got some fresh dill put up for the winter.  Bought a bunch from the farmer’s market.

Snip off all the soft bits and wash.  I leave out the woody stems.

Then put it in a mixer with 1/4 cup of extra-virgin olive oil for every cup of gently packed herb.   Whir till it looks like pesto.

Put in ice-cube tray and freeze.

Pack in zip lock bags or, what I love, use a Food Saver (worth every penny, food keeps without freezer burn for ages).


Okay, Saver of Bugs.  Here is the recipe for

Hamburger Stroganoff

  • 1 lb. ground meat
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. fresh ground pepper or 1/2 tsp. canned ground pepper
  • 1 clove garlic or 1/4 tsp. of garlic salt
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion or 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 small can mushrooms
  • 2 tbls. flour
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup (or cream of mushroom)
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • pasta or biscuits or mashed potatoes

Combine hamburger, salt, pepper, garlic, onion, mushrooms, and flour.  Cook until meat is browned.  (Since I have grease issues, I put the ground meat in alone till most of the grease/juice has come out of it and then drain it.  It will still have pink bits.  Then I throw everything in and finish browning it.  The flour binds the grease but is also necessary for the brown bits at the bottom.  If you add the salt, etc. before you drain it, you will drain that out with the grease.)  Add the soup, undiluted, and heat up.  I then turn the heat off with the soup smeared all over the bottom to soften the brown bits and then go finish fixing the noodles.  When the noodles are done, I scrape the bottom of the pan to get up the brown bits.  Then I turn on the heat and add the sour cream.  Heat through.

Fur Babies and Other Friends

 Sooo, I don’t always get caught out with animals, but this time I did.  When I bought my Bearded Dragon I knew he would get big.  But I thought I had time before I needed a large cage.  Oops.  Nothing in the books said how fast they grew.  But I noticed I couldn’t keep this guy fed and he was getting skinny.  Part of the problem was also my fear of impaction.  I decided to go surfing the net and see what I could find that sounded reliable.  According to the breeders, these guys can grow up to 2 inches a month.  2 INCHES A MONTH!!!  -ACK!-  Not to mention the fact that crickets now cost 10 cents a cricket!  (*head to desk*)  So I’m going to have to work on procuring lodgings sooner than expected.  The most likely scenario will be putting all the hermit crabs into one tank and giving the other 20 gallon to him.  I have a 90 gallon that was originally for the hermit crabs once I got the house in order.  (Thanks to a one time job on a construction cleaning crew during our high school remodel.)  But it’s looking like the lizard is going to get it unless I can find a cheapo tank in a yard sale.  Or I score major cash at Christmas.  Oh, and I’m going to start raising crickets again.  I can’t afford to keep buying them.  He’s currently eating mealworms for breakfast (I have a mealworm culture from my last lizard) and 20-25 crickets for dinner.  My 50 lb dog doesn’t cost this much to feed! *sigh*  Say hello to Galen.  His first picture is the day after I brought him home.  The second picture is from today.  Excuse the lighting.  Still working on how to get pictures through the glass.

Wow, long post and it’s nearly 1 am.  I’m off to bed.  Night!

Mug of the Day

I’m Baaaack

Random Thoughts

Wow.  Amazing how fast time can pass when you’re not having fun.  My monthly friend came along like 3 all at once and I felt like I got run over by a 100 car coal train.  (TMI?)  My days and nights are now screwed as I was getting up every 2 to 3 hours.  Thus my eating has been hit and miss and I’m down to 122 lbs. which is Bad.  As soon as I hit 120 or below I start getting sick.  So got to start piling on the calories.  Cranky and tired are the words for the day.

I did make it out to our local Farmer’s Market and bought myself some comfort food – Butter Toffee Peanuts.  I deserve them.  I sucked down half the bag on the trip home.  🙂  (Oh, and I also bought ‘real’ food, kohlrabi, tomatoes, plums, mmmm – just picked raspberries.)

I still haven’t decided what to do about apportioning time for the blog (here I am at 10 pm again!), I’ve been brain fried for the last week.  And I still have to do bills!  I’m also currently wrangling my husband to get him to decide what in the heck he wants to do for Father’s Day and his Birthday (the 20th).  He is being uncooperative. *Sigh* (with a slight growl)

Sitting in the grass late yesterday with my baby lizard, I was eating and looking at life in the grass and realized that in our hustle and bustle we forget how much goes on around us unnoticed.  It made me think of this quote and it’s one I need to put up somewhere where I can see it regularly.

“The only difference between an extraordinary life and an ordinary one is the extraordinary pleasures you find in ordinary things.”  — Veronique Vienne

Life at Our House

We had a pop-up thunderstorm that made me smile.  It was over our house pouring down the rain and in the back part of our yard the sun was shining.


School is out and Spider Bait is now home for the summer.  He doesn’t know it yet, but he’s going to be working his butt off helping his mother get Shtuff done.


Okay, Saver of Bugs, here is the sourdough bread recipe leaving out proofing times and temps, just doing it the way I do it at home.

World Bread

  • 1/2 cup cold sponge culture
  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 6 cups flour
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • Bake at 375

Mix the 1/2 cup of sourdough with 1 1/2 cups flour and 1 cup of water.  Cover bowl and sit on top of the refrigerator.  Do this right before you go to bed. (Note:  In the summer it should be warm enough in your room that you don’t have to do this downstairs.  Out of curiosity, you should check the temps on your dorm fridge every 15 min.  for about an hour and a half.  You might be able to raise the loaves on it.)

When you get up, add 1 cup flour and 1/4 cup water and mix well.  Cover and put up on the fridge (or in your room – you’re looking for min. 72 degrees, no more than 85).  Let it work no less than 4 hours.  Depending on how warm your room is or on top of the fridge, the culture will start to go down at about 8 hrs.  At 12 hours it is flat.  I generally like to set up the loaves at about 6 hours.  But I’ve done it all along the time frame at one time or another.

Bread time.  Grease both bread pans and make sure you have enough space to knead bread.  Get your small saucepan out and toss 2 tbsp butter in it at medium heat.  With my old nasty pans, you should probably do it at a notch or so below medium.  When the butter is melted, put in the 1 cup milk and heat till lukewarm.  Remove from heat and add 2 tsp. salt and 2 tbsp. sugar and mix till dissolved.  Pour into sourdough mixture and mix well.  Begin adding flour 1 cup at a time till it gets too hard to stir well.  This is usually at about 5 cups for me.  Dust kneading surface with flour and tip sourdough out of bowl and start kneading and adding the rest of the flour.  Knead till smooth and elastic.  Depending on how humid it is and how dry the flour, you may need less than the 6 cups or more.  This is the part you learn to do by feel.  You want the dough as moist as possible and still workable and elastic.  Not gummy gooey.  Not stiff as a brick.

Divide the dough into 2 loaves, knead into shape and drop into the pans.  As wide as those bread pans are moosh the dough to cover the bottom.  Cover and let raise in a warm spot till the tops are just barely below the top of the pans.  About 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours.  If you forget and the dough gets above the pan sides, use a fork or the tip of a knife to burst the bubbles or the top of the crust will come off when you cut it.  Spray or brush with water and cut the tops of the loaves.  Bake at 375 for 40 to 45 minutes.  Remove from pans and cool for at least 30 minutes before cutting.

(You are feeding your sourdough at least once a week – riiiight?)

Fur Babies and Other Friends

This poor baby deer, just out of his spots, was apparently hit by a car.  That front leg is barely moveable.  And it clearly didn’t learn much from the experience, ’cause my husband almost hit him the next night coming home!

Will someone please explain to me how in the heck this is comfortable?  He didn’t even wake up when I turned the light on to take the picture!

Out In The Yard

Our header for today is one of my daughter’s Dianthus.

My lizard with no name* is also part of the yard stuff today, or should I say –  last night.  They need sun to manufacture Vit D to process calcium and I don’t have a UV bulb up yet so I take him outside.  While sitting there, I started watching life in the grass.  It was sooo relaxing.  There is so much going on right beneath our feet.  I managed to get a couple of pictures of my lizard and a couple of the lawn’s occupants living their lives around my feet.

The Jungle

Naw, I don’t let him run free.

I’m so cute!

Busy, busy, busy, Bee. It was really hard to get a picture of one of these guys!

One of my fav’s, the Preying Mantis. That clover flower next to him is about the size of a pea.

(*What to name this lizard?  I keep calling him Squirt, but he won’t be a Squirt forever.  More on that in my next post.  I kinda liked Willow but everyone’s running away screaming on that one.  Then Cooper kinda hit me, but Spider Bait sneered at that one too.  And apparently my hair dresser says it has to have a lizardish name or a dragon name. [Spider Bait got his haircut today and was discussing my lizard.]  Suggestions?)


Also while I was miserable this past week, I had problems with my right knee.  A reminder that I need to find my ankle weights and start back on my old knee exercises.  Horseback riding in the number of hours that I was putting in back in the day plus running created a muscle imbalance that will always be with me.  When I was working and running it wasn’t so much a problem because I was also doing weight work to keep my body evened up.  It was during the off-season when the muscles began to atrophy that my knees would give me the most trouble.  At one point the imbalance pulled my kneecaps sideways, which was less than fun and had one doctor wanting to cut the muscles off the sides of my kneecaps.  Well, you know that ain’t happening.  I eventually found a doctor and runner who realized what was going on and gave me exercises to do to save my knees and keep me moving.  The catch?  It will always be there and require exercises to keep my parts where they belong.  So gotta get back to it.

Things did straighten up enough that I started walking again yesterday.  NO sore muscles!  I’m excited.  I’ll walk a couple more times and if I still have no soreness I’m going to go from 20 min. to 25 min. and see what happens.  Squee!

Mug of the Day

I really need to bake some homemade ones.   Mmmmm…

Here We Go Again and I Want To Run Again

Random Thoughts

Start early, get everything in the blog, go to bed at a reasonable hour.  Uh huh.  It’s 11:16 pm.  Sigh.  I could blame the thunder storms that surprised us, but they were gone by dinner time.  I have got to get my shit together.  But there are a couple of things I wanted to get up today.  (Here you go, Saver of Bugs.  My finish time for this blog was 1:30 am)

Life At Our House

Okay, Saver of Bugs, here is the bag on wheels I told you about.  I put the little green bag on top so you could see what size it is folded up.  Let me know if this is to be shipped to you.  (I swear I’ll get some recipes up tomorrow.)

Fur Babies and Other Friends

Isn’t he cute when he’s waking up?  I turned on the light and he stayed put long enough for me to go get my camera.  I think it’s hilarious that he goes to bed whenever I turn the light out; even though there is a 15 watt light still on in the room to give everyone a twilight.

Here’s a momma squirrel who didn’t want to share with her baby.  Look up in the right hand corner of the picture.

Out in the Yard

Our header today is an Amaryllis that I found in the garage.  It survived the winter in there!


 So if you’ve been following along you know how much “not fun” I had when I moved my daughter into her new room.  However, I survived the ordeal and fully expected to wind up laid up for a long time.  But here it’s been a weekish and I’m fine.  Even the small tear I had in my biceps has gone quiet.  The only thing that is still complaining is, of course, my back.  However, I did slip on the bank down back with a load of wet laundry in my arms.  And while I didn’t fall, I did wrench things a bit.

We spent some time trying to figure out what is different this year.  I really haven’t done anything different except to make sure I get sleep.  Even if it means totally losing a day.  This is also the first year in 15 years that I have not gotten bronchitis and May marked a year without any sinus infections.  Usually I spend 3 to 6 months every year fighting and recovering from these two illnesses.  Sometimes I have both at the same time.  I think our unusually mild winter helped.  Whatever the reason, this sudden burst of good health has me all excited.  I would love to be able to run again.

I found my old, old running folder a bit back while looking for something I had put in the pit of ‘somewhere safe’.  I went and got it out and started pawing through it.  Wow.  Lots of stuff.  And I know there is more somewhere in this house ‘somewhere safe’.  Here’s a view of the mess that needs to be organized and I seriously need a new folder.

Do you see the woman on the right?  At the time of that article (2003, I think), Helen Klein was 80 years old and running ultra-marathons.  She did not start running until she was 55 years old.  I  admire her.  I would love for that to me some day.  I googled her and she was still running as of 2008 and I didn’t see anything that said she has died since then.  When I get some time, I’m going to do some more searches.  I would love to find out where she is right now and if she’s still running.

I dug through a drawer and found my safety vest for night running and my old wallet watch.  The battery is dead, but I will replace it.  I can’t wear battery watches as a rule.  I kill the battery dead in about 2 weeks of constant wearing.  However, I think the padding between me and the watch plus the stuff I put in the wallet section helps keep me from zapping the battery dead.  Here’s a picture of them followed by a picture of my favorite running shoes.

I started running in the Saucony Jazz back in the 80’s and have been in some version of it ever since.  These are the Original Jazz from the 80’s, retro if you will, and they only cost $55.  Awesome.

Today I saw the clock ticking away and decided to just throw my shoes on and go for a 20 minute walk before I procrastinated my way out of daylight.  As I was putting my shoes on I decided to see if I could touch my toes.  Ugh.  Nope.  So I guess one of the first charts to put together will be for stretching.  And out the door I went.

It was beautiful out if a bit windy.  But I got to watch some crows playing in the wind.  One in particular liked to shoot straight up and then spread his wings as far as they would go and let the wind flip him over.  He would then swoop and spin through the same batch of trees like a ski racer on a slalom course.  Over and over again as fast as he could.  It was so much fun to watch.

I re-learned a few things on my walk.

  • Even small boobies need support.  Definitely need to rummage around and find my sports bras (and running shorts).
  • Gotta find a hat I can live with.  The sun was killing my eyes and I can’t run with glasses on my face.  Visors are out.  They land on my nose.  I used to have this really, really light hat that was barely there, but I have no idea what happened to it.  Sigh.
  • Keep your head and eyes up!  That way you’ll have plenty of time to scramble for safety when some dumb asshole looking and leaning down to the right between the front seats steers right on a left hand bend.  (We don’t have sidewalks where I live.)

Twenty-one minutes later I was back.  That is not good.  Went out too fast.  I jumped in the car to see where I was in mileage.  Curiosity got the cat and all.  Yikes!!!  1.2 miles!  That meant I did a mile in 17.5 minutes my first time out.  I don’t know yet if I should be thrilled or not.  I’ll let you know how much trouble I have getting out of bed tomorrow.  I did have some complaining parts while I was out.  My hips weren’t happy, muscularly, but no joint complaints.  I slipped off a loose section of the pavement and had my right knee bend left.  It has grumbled a wee bit.  But so far nothing that is totally pissed.

My recovery wasn’t real good.  My start out heart rate was 84.  I was slightly jacked about going out.  My finishing heart rate was 162.  It would have been better around 140 or 150.  After 10 minutes post workout it was 102 – okay.  But at 30 minutes post workout I was still up at 96.  It should have been normal by then.  Which is a sign of overtraining for present condition.  So I can’t push any more than what I did today.   However, I’m still thrilled.  It felt so good to go out there and do this.  That crazy moving day with my daughter was good for my mind.  From George Sheehan:

“For every runner who tours the world running marathons, there are thousands who run to hear the leaves and listen to the rain, and look to the day when it is suddenly as easy as a bird in flight.”

Mug of the Day

Half A Post, Wonky Internet, Very Late Night (Silly Me), Cute Critters

Random Thoughts

I have been wanting to get something up for several days but the weather has not been cooperating.  High winds, torrential rains, Tornado Warnings!  Our internet does not react well to inclement weather.  It blinks off and on or gets slower than mud, or just goes out all together.  I’ve had enough internet to keep up with my bike races and other people’s blogs, thankfully.  (Hey, some people read the newspaper with breakfast.  I like the internet.)    But I wasn’t willing to fight trying to put up a blog.  This morning I said, “I’m going to get a blog up early today.”  Uh huh, right.  It’s currently 10:40 pm.  Sigh.  And not only is it late, I’m also tired.   I was a bad, bad, girl last night.  Look what I bought really cheap with my birthday money; they came in the mail yesterday:

Guess what I did last night into the wee hours of the morning?  (One down, one to go.)

I’m also apparently trying to get a urinary tract infection.  This is Bad.  I tend to morph very quickly into bladder infections but I have to wait till Monday to get ahold of the doctor.  So I started the Echinacea and went to the store to get the dreaded Cranberry Juice.  I hate this stuff.  I love dried cranberries in muffins and such, but juice?  Poison in a bottle.  I hold my breath and chug it and then need something to take the taste out.  In this case, I said the heck with the cost and bought Krispy Kreme donuts in a box.   Yeah, not the same as fresh, but the nearest Krispy Kreme closed a couple of years ago.  So I nuke them and pretend.  I’m on donut number two.  The juice left a really bad taste.  🙂

Life At Our House

Spider Bait is on his last Band Trip.  I feel kinda sad for him.  There will be a lot of ‘lasts’ this next year.  Hopefully, he will be excited about moving forward to college.

Fur Babies and Other Friends

I usually feed meal worms to my lizards.  I raise my own.  Occasionally I go buy crickets because I don’t raise them anymore.  Here they are drinking and stuffing themselves with good food.

I wanted to show you my lizard hunting his food, but I haven’t handled him in a couple of days, so he is skittish again and wouldn’t eat with me standing there.  So I left him alone in his feeding tub and later I got this picture of him basking with a full tummy.


The baby squirrels are out and about  now.  Here are three babies, sans mother, trying to ‘share’ the feeder.

There are still 3 in there

Out In The Yard 

Our header today is Yarrow.  Catching the bee in the picture was a bonus.


Here is another of my birthday plant purchases.  Look up in the left hand corner about an inch in.  Can you see what looks like a wee grasshopper leg?  (Okay, you’ll have to click on the picture to make it bigger.)

 Here is a close up of our little friend.  He is about as long as a penny is wide.


Isn’t he just adorable?  I love Preying Mantis’s.  We get lots of them around here and I love to watch them moving through the plants.


Please feel free to substitute your belief systems here.

Tomorrow I’m doing this early, right!? 

New Critter and New Plants

Random Thoughts

For those of you who read my post ‘Sorrow’,  ‘M’s’ parents were laid to rest today.  Saver of Bugs posted a beautiful poem in the comments.  You should take a moment to go over there and read it.  It made me cry it’s so beautiful.


EEEWW!!!  Talk about a mood changer.   I’m junk fooding tonight and I just scooped up a spoonful of Chex Mix to eat.  When I put it in my mouth something wiggled and as I opened my mouth to spit it out a moth flew out of my mouth.  And it wasn’t a small one.  Gah, gick, blerg, bleahhhhh…..

Fur Babies and Other Friends

Okay.  For those of you who don’t know, I don’t tell a short story.  You’ve been warned.

I lost my Leopard Gecko ‘Jubel’ a few months ago.  It wasn’t an easy death and I was quite upset.  I love my critters and hate seeing them suffer.  He is buried under one of my Butterfly Bushes in the garden.  I never realized how often I looked at him till he was gone.  Everytime I went in the bedroom I automatically looked over to see what he was doing and no one was there.  And not having the light on for the cage was distracting as well.  But eventually it quit hurting so much and I started thinking about another lizard since I missed having one.

I started thinking about what I wanted in the next lizard.  Ease of care, NOT a lizard prone to intestinal blockages, sturdy,  calm (for a lizard) attitude, a daytime lizard,  not too big, and not hugely expensive.  This kept bringing me back to Bearded Dragons, or Beardies, as they’re called.  But the baby Beardies need fed a couple of times a day and they still cost money and I couldn’t justify using house money to buy another pet and I wasn’t sure I wanted to do infant upkeep.  But then I scored serious cash for my birthday.  Hmmmm.

I didn’t go out looking for a lizard.  I still wasn’t sure I wanted to go back into ‘feeding another critter’ mode.  But I was out looking for another goldfish.  Pip died last fall and Merry was doing okay by herself.  But here recently she has taken to just hanging in the corner and looking sad.  This was how I wound up with Pip and Merry.  My son’s goldfish, Steven, lost his buddy and wound up morose and doing nothing.  Steven has since passed leaving Pip and Merry.  But Pip was never a strong healthy fish.  She constantly had intestinal issues and she lived years longer than I expected.  And then one morning I got up and she had died with no warning whatsoever.  I was stunned.  She had looked perfectly fine when I turned the light out before bed.  Go figure.

Anyway, I hit the first pet store and came up zip on goldfish (I’m picky).  But I can’t go into a pet store without checking out all the critters.  I shop pet stores the way some women shop for shoes.  So, of course, that meant looking at the lizards.  I found a Beardie that was already about 8 inches long, solid, healthy, and even had some orange on him.  He would come right to the glass and check me out whenever I stopped by.  They wanted $63 for him.  But did I want to bring a lizard home right now?  I kept looking at him, but finally left, deciding that I’d see how I felt when I had done all the running around I had planned.

My last stop was yet another pet store where I shop on a regular basis.  I’ve always had good luck with whatever I buy there, critter wise.  And my first stop was the reptile enclosures.  There was a small, young Beardie that came running right up to me and checked me out; well-formed, well fed, and all the poop in the cage looked good.  Sigh.  I walked away, checked out the rest of the critters, and then got the stuff on my list.  But, yeah, I went back to check the lizards again. And again, the same little guy came right up to the glass.  I glanced at the price tag and my mouth popped open.  He was on sale for $42.00!  I haven’t ever seen Beardies priced that low.  Ugh.  Grooooan.  Oooh, hell.  I had them come over and open up the enclosure and he was sweet and adorable and stayed put to be picked up while all the other ones ran away and I bought him.  He (or she) doesn’t have a name yet, but here he is:  (Oh, and check out the rock in his enclosure.  We don’t remember exactly where I got it, but we figure I’ve had it about 25 years now.)

Out in the Yard

Our header today is a combination of my baby Serviceberry with bunches of yummy berries on it and a geranium from a friend.  Check out the visitor, too.

I also treated myself to some plants with my birthday money.

Those butt ugly glued on straw flowers that you pay extra for got taken right off.  The flowers fall apart the first time they get wet and depending how the glue is applied, it may kill or damage part of the cactus.  I only paid extra for those two cacti because they are already blooming for real.  Once they open up, I’ll post pictures.

Extra Critter Pictures for Saver of Bugs

Saver of Bugs asked for more critter pictures since she is missing her fuzzies.

I’m fuzzy because mom has the shakes.

This nice warm laundry pile is Mine!


Loves me a warm rolling doggy out in the sun!