July 31, 2008

That's right, I lied.

Cayman didn't REALLY follow me home. (But you knew that, right?) A couple of days ago I was innocently purchasing a bag of cat food at our vet clinic when I noticed five little kittens behind the counter. The clinic accepts "rescued" cats, checks them over and then gives them away to good homes. I had a feeling that Scott's reluctance to bring home a new kitten would melt away as soon as he saw this brood. I ran to the car and dragged Scott into the clinic. After about twenty minutes of handling the kittens, Scott made his choice. Basically, Cayman came free with a bag of cat food.

Here's the little bugger now, doing a very poor job of making friends with Molly:

Undeterred by several open-pawed swats to the face, Cayman tried the same approach with Trooper:

And while I'm on the topic of pets (when am I not?), I thought I would share with you a couple of images of Max, the pug who has been wreaking havoc on our floors and our olfactory organs:

Last but not least, here is a photo of Max sleeping on the sofa with his leg down the back of my jeans.

Now that's what I call a hind leg.

July 29, 2008

He followed me home

When there's already so much chaos in the household, what's one more little pet? Meet Cayman.

July 25, 2008

Randy Pausch's last lecture

Randy Pausch, Oct. 23, 1960 - July 25, 2008

July 17, 2008

Did I mention my nickname is Calamity?

Really, with a nickname like that, it's a wonder that Scott ever agreed to live with me. I seem to invite disasters big and small. Recently these calamities collided, making for a very grumpy household.

Where to begin? Well, we recently took in a pug named Max. We're not keeping him, we're justing holding him for a friend. For a month. As you can imagine, the idea was mine, not Scott's. Max was shy for the first two days in our care, but now he is terrorizing our own dogs. He doesn't seem to notice our cats, which is one of the reasons I suspect that there is something wrong with him. Another reason is that he always tries to leave the house through the hinged side of the door. As well, he appears to have forgotten all about housetraining. He will come inside after a run in the yard and promptly relieve himself on the floor. I am guaranteed to find poop on the floor when I get up in the morning and when I arrive home in the evening. Good times.

Also, as you know, our basement recently flooded. That same night, our insurance company sent a couple of men from Bare Minimum Contracting to clean up. After they finished, the basement looked like this:

Much better, right? That's what I thought, too. Unfortunately, when the claims adjuster finally came out, he remarked that the first pair of dimwits did not do what they were supposed to do, which is to remove any water-damaged material. As a result, mould had been spreading while our basement festered for an entire week. (I was too busy picking up pug poop and battling the insurance company over our ridiculously high deductible to notice.) The claims adjuster apologized profusely, which didn't make our basement smell any better, and he assured us that a crew from a different contractor would do a proper clean-up the following day. Unable to afford another day off work, I handed over a spare house key.

Before I left the next morning, I confined the the cats to our bedroom, locked Montana in his crate and shut Max in the bathroom. I didn't want any pets fleeing the house or getting in the way while the clean-up crew carried garbage outside. Ferris, being terrified of strangers, was not a concern. The clean-up crew reportedly arrived at 10:00 am. By "crew" I mean a man named Andre. One lone guy was responsible for boxing all the items in the basement, moving the furniture, and tearing out the floor, baseboards and damaged drywall. He did a thorough job, but when I got home that evening I could barely move around the main floor because the basement had vomited all over it. There were (and still are) stacks of boxes everywhere. On the plus side, we've managed to build walls out of the boxes so that Max has only a small area in which to crap.

This is what our basement looked like when Andre's work was done:

Where is my floor?

Where are my walls?

But we already had an entrance in that room.


Speaking of "ugh," let's move to disaster #3. Scott called me at work to inform me that he was heading to the hospital to get stitches. Scott works with dangerous tools and machines all day long and he has already lost part of a thumb on the job. My stomach was turning somersaults as Scott nonchalantly told me what had happened. Something about a hand-held grinder with a circular blade that spins at 12,000 RPM. Rather than explaining the details, I'll just post a couple of photos of the results:

With all of that going on, when I got home I just needed to lie down for a few minutes. I went into the bedroom where our cats were huddled and tried to turn on the ceiling fan. It didn't work. Neither did the attached light. There was nothing wrong with the breaker; the fan/light unit had simply died. Now, that may seem like a trivial thing, but with a third of the house out of bounds, the main living area full of musty boxes and an unhousetrained dog and the bedroom all dark and stuffy, it was getting to be a bit much. The next thing you know, we'll be forced to bathe in the kitchen sink.

July 09, 2008

Doing the slow burn

I can't even begin to explain my frustration with my insurance company. If I try, I'll just turn red in the face and begin sputtering and spitting and shaking my fists. So instead, I'll look at puppies courtesy of Aviva. When my current policy is up for renewal, you can bet I'll be turning to Aviva for a quote.

Ahh, puppies.

A Haven from the Storm

This sums up the past few days

My brother and sister-in-law don't know how accurate they were in naming Haven. With the roller coaster Scott and I have been on over the past few days, Haven really has been a sanctuary where our minds can go when we're getting overwhelmed.

Scott's grandma passed away last week, three days after we had our final visit with her. It was heart-wrenching to see her panicking in the cloud of confusion caused by morphine. I doubt that she knew we were there, saying our good-byes. Her wake was on Sunday, her funeral on Monday. Family means a lot to Scott and this past week has been hard on him.

As you know from my last post, Haven was born -- just hours after Grandma's funeral. We went from the lowest of lows to the highest of highs when we finally got to meet her. Yesterday evening we ventured out in a fierce summer storm to return to the hospital, where we enjoyed our second visit with the little darling. The thunder, lightning and downpour outside were barely noticeable once we were cradling little Haven in the quiet hospital room. We probably overstayed our welcome, but it was hard to tear ourselves away from our new niece.

Finally we gave Haven back to her exhausted but proud parents. On the way home, I spotted a rainbow. I couldn't resist pulling out the camera to capture the beauty that, in my corny baby-high, I figured Haven had magically brought forth.

Now, I do realize that babies don't conjure up rainbows any more than kittens poop them. Rain causes rainbows. (I'm simplifying here, because if I wrote "Rainbows are optical and meteorological phenomena that cause a spectrum of light to appear in the sky when the Sun shines onto droplets of moisture in the Earth's atmosphere," you would know that I was just quoting Wikipedia.) At any rate, rain quickly eclipsed Haven as the focus of our evening. Why? Here's why:

Welcome to my basement, post-flood. I now have the pleasure of dealing with the insurance company. Oh joy, oh bliss.

Time to stare at more photos of my niece. Thank heaven for Haven.

July 07, 2008

She's here!

My niece has arrived. She's healthy and beautiful. Introducing Haven.

I'm over the moon!

July 01, 2008

I don't know about you...

...but I'm just not all that turned on by religion.