Sunday, July 13, 2008

cars, cats, and the cashless control grid

ive discovered my 97 mitsubishi montero can get 21 miles to the gallon if i stick to lots of highway miles and drive under 60 mph. and sometimes it's better to waste gas. the other day i had to take a cat to get fixed (more about that later). the closest vet who will do feral cats for feral friends is 15 miles away and you have to drop off by 9am and pick up is some time in the late afternoon. with a 16mo and an almost 4yo, that makes for a very long day. naps are missed, lunch, snacks and random shopping is done. like the other day i spent over $20 - granted some of it was planned but we got some lunch and "ice cream" at mcdonald's while waiting. plus i made up some of the mileage driving around to get the boys to sleep and looking for some place to go. or i could have just put 30 miles (roughly $6 in gas), eaten at home and gone to the library. live and learn.

and after i complain about not catching any cats, i caught 3. one was dash, the little tuxedo i got fixed a while ago. she was in the trap with jack jack laying right there watching. the next day, i got this picture:

there he is. right outside my kitchen window. the trap is full of food.

here he is telling me where to shove that trap and food. he's big and well fed. for all i know, he could be someone's pet, but he's really skiddish around me.

and then i caught this little guy. his name is octavian. he might have been one of the kittens i saw way back before i caught antonia. it was cute because he had violet, and two other cats watching over him.

i was very happy i caught him because i wanted to get antonia a friend. assuming he is the same age as antonia, he was a month older (and probably out of the good range for socialising feral kittens) and still took wonderfully to taming. by day 3 he was roaming the house. i named him octavian because in those first days he was so quiet. when i was holding him, he wouldnt purr and every now and then would slowly turn his head around and just stare at me. it was quite unnerving. since then he's gotten really chatty though usually it's when he's hungry and now that his comfortable and playing, it's mostly stopped.

then i caught helios

he was not happy about getting caught. i was taking buddyone to mother's day out and thought, what the hell, let's see if i got anything. good thing i did because the trap was placed in a spot that would be in the sun and i was planning to stay out all day running errands. i did see a completely grey kitten in the batch, but he seemed much older than antonia or octavian. he got fixed on thursday, and then i got him again today. he was pretty pissed off at me about that.

and i saw dash again with three different kittens eating out of the compost bin. at least im pretty sure it was her - they were various black and white which could make them her's, but she was fixed. i dont know enough about extended cat families to know if non-mothers would babysit a litter. and she was sitting facing the back door while the kittens played. like she knew i might come out. that was wednesday night, i think, and i havent seen them since. there's also an adult tom that looks like octavian. if only i could get him, jack jack and octavia fixed, i might be able to keep the colony under control. the vet does ear tip the cat's that get fixed, but it's very subtle and it can be hard to tell when they are bouncing all around the trap. i wish they would punch the ear like they do with livestock. there would be no mistaking that.

back when husband stayed home with buddyone, he got really into alex jones. for the most part i think he's complete bullshit. im just too skeptical to accept conspiracy theories, but i think he got it right during his screed of the cashless control grid. while driving to get helios fixed i heard a story about gas stations charging more for gas to cover the costs of credit card purchases. like those fuckers (the credit card companies, that is) havent been making money hand over fist and all those commercials about what a loser you are for using cash or checks. be a happy brainless consume-bot and use plastic for everything!!!

so in the spirit of dissent, ive decided to use paper over plastic. and i think it will help me stay on budget, too. i remember seeing something in tightwad gazette about the envelope system of budgeting and thats what im doing. ive allotted certain amounts for the main things i spend money on during the week - groceries, gas, household, dining, entertainment. this money has to last me during the pay period. when it's gone, it's gone. i will be forced to make smarter purchases - no brainless shopping sprees at thrift town, nor will i buy more because i cant justify debiting a buck o' five. any money i have left over will go to making some of the bigger, household need purchases - like im on the hunt for a good end table or chest for all our afghans and blankets and more bookshelves. i will keep the debit card for emergencies purchases - like tomorrow the kitties have to go to the vet, but it's not those things that make us go over budget, it's trips to the mall and sonic and "im bored, let's go to home depot." im hoping it works.

and i told husband i wanted an h2o steam mop for christmas.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

my updating-fu sucks

im going to do another bulleted post because theres two weeks worth of crud to talk about. lets see. breaking down by topic

  • agrippa had a nasty ear and sinus infection last week. i really need to talk to the ped about getting stronger ABXs or something. giving him 10 days, twice a day is just too much work. he screams and pukes it all back up.
  • we went to the zoo yesterday because it was a "cool" 93 degrees and the train and carosel rides were free. i try to stay away from parenting drive-bys but im always amazed at the number of parents who take their kids somewhere really exciting and fun and then expect perfect behaviour. we go to the zoo, ride the train, look at the tree frogs and play in the sand box. thats about it. oh, and play in the kid barn. but the number of parents who wont let their kids play in the sandbox or keep asking "dont you want to see the animals/get something to eat?" when they want to keep playing. or parents who make their kids stay in the stroller went they want to get out and walk. honestly, isnt the whole point to hang out and have a good time with your kids? it cant be that fun when you are dragging your kid kicking and screaming around so you can get your money's worth of animal viewing and "fun family time?"


  • murphy's law of feral cat trapping - "if you set it, they will not come." i went through my quota of gas and could not justify the 40mile round trip to take any cats to the vet so i didnt set the traps. and suddenly they are everywhere. cats i havent seen before or in a really long time. jack-jack has made an appearance the last few nights but i think he's "too smart" for it. last night when i was putting faramir to sleep i saw him hanging out on the patio. and then tonight i went walking around and he was behind the big tree. saw dash too.
  • antonia's doing good. i need to start treatment for ear mites though. i dont know why it took me so long to figure it out, especially with the inlaw's dog, roxie, and her chronic ear problems. that should have been the first thing i looked at.


  • sam's puppy robeez are getting worn out so i used up my credit at kid 2 kid and got some knock-offs with trains on them for 1.99. also got the complete curious george.

thats all i can thhink of for now.