Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Last Day to Vote for Josef!

Today is the last day to vote for Josef. Thanks to everyone who has been voting all along-let's all give a last vote today. At the moment Josef is at 15%, but 2 others are at 14% and another is at 13% so every vote counts! Let's hope Josef can keep his lead and tomorrow I'll be able to make a victory speech. You can find his picture when you scroll down this page. Thanks so much-we can't do it without you!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Flat Stanley Going Home

This afternoon I sent Flat Stanley, along with a long letter and several treats, back to Austin, Texas. I enjoyed showing him around the area, and it again reminded me of all the things to see and do in Western New York. Aside from Zoos and museums, there are lots of historical sights to see as well. You can see architecture by Frank Lloyd Wright, garden design by Frederick Law Olmsted, final resting places of Susan B. Anthony, Frederick Douglas, William McKinley and many other notables. You can find the site of a presidential assassination and inauguration. There are vineyards and wineries, orchards and more. Niagara Falls, the underground railroad, and more. You can go through the Alabama Swamps, stop by Greece, Egypt, Rome, and even a garden in Eden and still be in Western New York. Come for a visit and I know you'll come back.
Vote for Josef-he's in the white lilacs.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Broadway Market

Yesterday I went to Buffalo and my folks and I went to the Broadway Market. The market has been running since 1888! Eastertime is probably its busiest season. People from all over to come to get their holiday supplies, from horseradish, placek, and rye bread to pisanki (the wooden hand painted eggs from Poland)and hyacinths. When I was young my family and I would go on Good Friday, after visiting 7 churches (a Polish-American Easter tradition). We came a few weeks earlier this year. The Easter flowers weren't there yet, but the pussy willows and Polka band were. We listened to City Side Band and had a great time.

While we were doing that Barrett was back at the hospital. Although his stitches were out, he was messing with a scab and basically put a big hole in his butt! He had to be restitched. He's home now, I was able to pick him up last evening, and he's wearing an e-collar. But the wound is started to ooze. We may have to go back to the vet tomorrow. Sigh.
Please vote for Josef-he's in the white lilacs.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Earth Hour

This year, Earth Hour has been transformed into the world’s first global
election, between Earth and global warming.
For the first time in history, people of all ages, nationalities, race and
background have the opportunity to use their light switch as their vote –
Switching off your lights is a vote for Earth, or leaving them on is a vote
for global warming. WWF are urging the world to VOTE EARTH and reach the
target of 1 billion votes, which will be presented to world leaders at the
Global Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen 2009.
This meeting will determine official government policies to take action
against global warming, which will replace the Kyoto Protocol. It is the
chance for the people of the world to make their voice heard.

Earth Hour began in Sydney in 2007, when 2.2 million homes and businesses
switched off their lights for one hour. In 2008 the message had grown into a
global sustainability movement, with 50 million people switching off their
lights. Global landmarks such as the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco,
Rome’s Colosseum, the Sydney Opera House and the Coca Cola billboard in
Times Square all stood in darkness.

In 2009, Earth Hour is being taken to the next level, with the goal of 1
billion people switching off their lights as part of a global vote. Unlike
any election in history, it is not about what country you’re from, but
instead, what planet you’re from. VOTE EARTH is a global call to action for
every individual, every business, and every community. A call to stand up
and take control over the future of our planet. Over 74 countries and
territories have pledged their support to VOTE EARTH during Earth Hour 2009,
and this number is growing everyday.

We all have a vote, and every single vote counts. Together we can take
control of the future of our planet, for future generations.

VOTE EARTH by simply switching off your lights for one hour, and join the
world for Earth Hour.

Saturday, March 28, 8:30-9:30pm. (Your Time)

Don't forget to vote for Josef! He's in the white lilacs.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Photo Phriday - Victorian Doll Museum

There are interesting places to see all around. This building was constructed in the early 1900s and served as the town's only commercial establishment, a general store, soda fountain, and gas station. After WWII, it became a dry cleaners, barber shop, and bookstore. In 1970, it became the Victorian Doll Museum. Over 3000 dolls are here, dating from the 1800s to today. One of the most interesting was the soap doll from the 1870s; she really is made from soap! I just loved the wedding display - it showed a mouse wedding. The museum also serves as a doll hospital. What's in your backyard?
Don't forget about Josef-he needs your vote-he's in the white lilacs

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Good Boy

When I got to the barn this afternoon I saw Harley out in the pasture. Of course he was in the farthest corner. I put my stuff up, grabbed the lead rope and went into the barnyard. I called for him and Jeter, who had been standing next to him, came running to me. Harley then actually began slowly walking my way. I met him about half way and put the lead rope on and we walked to the barn. I had to shoo Liam away-he wanted to come in too. Actually all the boys came into the barnyard, but Liam was the only one trying to come inside. I cleaned up my boy and then we went into the indoor. I let him off the lead rope and he slowly walked away. He sniffed some poop, then I made him work. I got the lunge whip and had him trot. He did pretty well. He wasn't on a lunge line-he was just free and he maintained the trot pretty well. He also listened to whoa quite well. I few times he didn't want to listen and just ignored me, but I finally got him to trot by jogging a few steps next to him. After a while, I decided we'd walk together. We were at the far end of the arena and I started walking to get the lead rope, but Harley began following me. Who needs a lead rope? We walked together for about 5 minutes, and we weren't just walking the perimeter-we did figure 8s and circles and he walked right along side of me. He was so good. Then I made him trot a bit more on his own before calling it a day. He's so good. I'm going to learn how to use the lunge line on Monday, so even though I can't ride him yet, he can have a good work session.
Don't forget-vote for Josef! He's the rat in the white lilacs.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Niagara Falls

I couldn't let Flat Stanley come all the way from Austin, Texas and not have him see a wonder of the world, so today I drove up to Niagara Falls. It was a good drive and I took some good photographs. It's still a bit out of season, you can still see ice on the river below the falls and up close to the falls themselves, so some stores were closed. Then about 4 buses of Chinese tourists arrived and it got very crowded. So I left. I was going to stop at the Seneca Niagara Casino, but I couldn't get a quick close parking spot, so I came back home. I did make a stop on Grand Island-Kelly's Country Store. I haven't been there in years, heck decades! I got some of their great handmade chocolate-the place is ready for Easter. Boy is their stuff good. My folks were at my place when I returned, then we went out to eat. I'm ready for a nap now!
Remember-vote for Josef-he's in the white lilacs!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009


Today I feel fat. I'm just uncomfortable and feel fat. It's so frustrating. Since I hurt my back I haven't been able to do much activity wise. Also, since I'm home most of the time I'm eating more. Friday I decided I could get back on the Wii Fit. I can't do everything, but at least I could do something. Of course I had gained weight. Over the weekend I made a conscious decision to try to eat better. I got on the Wii Fit again last evening-and I gained more weight. Ugh. Today I just woke up feeling uncomfortable and fat. Hopefully I can get in a good exercise routine. I haven't had any pop in ages (it helps that I only buy it at $1 or less-who knows if I can ever buy it again) and am trying to eat better. I know the key for me is exercise as I refuse to deprive myself of food. I'll just have to keep plugging away.
Please vote for Josef-he's the one in the white lilacs.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Bored Harley

Poor Harley is bored. Since I hurt my back I can't ride him and so he hasn't been working. Unlike me, who doesn't mind not working, Harley needs to work. He's becoming a pain at the barn. It doesn't matter if he's outside or not. He's getting a bit stir crazy. I'm going to have to get out there more often and make him work, not just walk with him. I'm going to learn how to lunge him. He was very good for me today and had an apple as a treat. He's getting his spring shots tomorrow. I just wish there was someone else with whom to share bills and work.
Please-vote for Josef-the one in the white lilacs. Thanks.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Maple Weekend

Did you know that New York State is the 3rd largest producer of maple syrup in the world?! It's true. Vermont is the only state that produces more than NY. Canada is #1 in the world. To celebrate NY offers Maple Weekend. It has become so popular that it now goes on for two weekends. Sugar Shacks around the state have open houses and show people how they make the syrup. You don't see many buckets nowadays. Instead you'll see plastic piping winding its way though maple forests. The farmers drill a hole in the maple tree to tap it and the syrup will run through the piping to holding tanks. The farm I went to today has been there for generations and people have been tapping syrup here even longer. This tree is about 200 years old! It was a great day, although quite cold. After seeing the sugar shack, where they make syrup from the sap, I went on a wagon ride to the maple trees. It was a muddy, bumpy ride, but fun. Afterward I said hello to some young Arabian horses (Sugar Hill Farm is adjacent to the Maple Farm) then bought some maple syrup. Yummm.
Don't forget to vote for Josef-the one in the white lilacs.

Saturday, March 21, 2009


It's a beautiful day, but cold in the house. I have several windows open as my parents painted part of my living room with primer. Unfortunately, they had to use oil based paint due to the soot from my wonderful candles. Add to the unfortunately as it got spilled onto the carpet...and the back entry. At least I didn't do it! Anyway, the place is a bit stinky. The next step will be regular paint, so it shouldn't be so bad.
Don't forget-Josef needs your vote. He's in the white lilacs!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Photo Phriday - Phlat Stanley

An old friend from Texas asked for my assistance with a school project for his son. Ryan is in the second grade and he sent me Flat Stanley. Apparently, Stanley was arguing with his brother when a bulletin board fell off the wall and flattened him. This makes travel most convenient as you can just pop him in an envelope and send him anywhere-for no extra cost. So Flat Stanley came from Austin, Texas and I'm showing him the sights of Western New York. Today we went to LeRoy, the birthplace of Jell-o and stopped by the Jell-o Museum. Here's Flat Stanley as the Jello Girl.

Don't forget - vote for Josef! He's in the white lilacs.

Thursday, March 19, 2009


I was just not meant to enjoy my lunch today. I was waiting for the UPS man as I had to sign for the delivery of the rat's medication, which also needs refrigeration. I fixed lunch-chicken and salsa over rice. I was just salting my plate ready to eat when I saw the UPS guy. I got the meds, put them in the fridge and then brought my lunch to the table to eat. I had just taken a few bites when the phone rang. I went to answer it, watching Barrett, who usually follows me, and telling him to leave my lunch alone. I answered the phone, heard Barrett, ran back to find he had jumped on the couch and had his face full in my plate gobbling as much as he could, as fast as he could. With the phone still in my hand, I yelled at him, grabbed the plate, and yelled into the phone "WHAT?????" It was my heating company calling to schedule my tune up. We did that and I sat back down, attempting to eat some more, when the phone rang again. This time I took my plate with me as Barrett was rushing for the TV table again. This time it was my mom. I told her I'd call her back, then finished what was left of my meal. Mind you, hardly anyone ever calls here. I guess my lunch was just not meant to be!
Don't forget to vote for Josef, the one in the white lilacs!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

More Fanpop Spots

I've been creating on Fanpop again. I made a new spot-Paranormal Romance. So far I'm the only fan. I have lots of content on it-so hopefully people will discover it soon. I've had a bunch of people join my Zoos spot and Mystery Novels, but they aren't rating my content. So frustrating. The same with Paper Crafting, with even fewer fans. My other created spots, Syd Barrett and Buffalo, NY aren't much better. Why won't people rate? Still, I got another dedicated fan medal-for the Cat spot. I'm also a dedicated fan of Dogs and Cemeteries and Graveyards. Now if only more people will rate my content.
Remember to vote for Josef! He's the one in the white lilacs.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

May the luck of the Irish be with you today and always! I've had a very busy St. Patty's day, and yes, I wore green (did you?). The day started with an early rise and drive across town with Josef, Snickers, Paulie, Vinnie, & Vito. The newer boys have never stopped sneezing and now Josef and Snickers started! The vet did a thorough exam on both Josef and Paulie. Fortunately, their lungs sounded pretty good. But everyone's on baytril. Then it was Barrett's turn. I took him to his vet as his incision is swollen and oozing. Barrett did very well and as for his wound, I have to ice his suture area for 3-5 minutes every hour. So...I have to ice him every hour or so, plus give him 2 pills 3 times a day. Seneca also gets a pill twice a day and 5 rats get liquid medication twice a day. Calumet, Aleister, and Harley better stay healthy! I also stopped at the bank and library. Now I'm home, the corned beef is simmering on the stove and an Irish Clover candle is burning. I got the first two disks of Season 4 of Doctor Who (I know, I'm behind) from the library, and that's about it for the day. Oh, later on I have to drop off the car at my mechanics. We have an 8AM oil change scheduled-so I'm going to leave it tonight and sleep longer tomorrow.
Don't forget-vote for Josef; the one in the white lilacs.

Monday, March 16, 2009


Today feels as if Spring has arrived. It's a gorgeous day outside with temperature in the 50's. I have the windows open-although now it's getting cold in the house, but I wanted to get some fresh air inside! I'm still sticking around the house, keeping an eye on Barrett. He's starting to try to mess with his stitches. I have to call the vet, the incision area is a bit red and I want to see if I can clean it up a bit-to see if he's still oozing blood. Poor boy. He has a good appetite though.

Remember, vote for Josef! The one in the white lilacs!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Falling Over

Beware the Ides of March. Hmmm. Things were falling over today, fortunately not me...nor Barrett. The statue of St. Francis in my garden toppled over as did the metal lantern by my back door. These are heavy objects too. I guess Spring is coming and the thawing ground moved a bit. St. Francis had been leaning. But the lantern is weird.
Don't forget to vote for Josef! He's the one in the white lilacs!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

The Pharmaceutical Rip-Off of America

The pharmaceutical companies are so ridiculous, it is unbelievable. I saw a headline about how companies are saying most of their problems come from providing health care for their employees. Most of that I feel is the unbelievable cost of prescriptions. I'm in the midst of transferring my prescriptions from one pharmacy to another. I went today to pick up one refill ($25 for a one month supply) and another-the first from this pharmacy for Imitrex-a migraine medication. The pharmacist got pulled them and said, "this one is $25 and the Imitrex is $218.67...wait a minute". Wait a minute is right. Over $218 for 18 pills? It seems there is now a generic version of Imitrex...if you want the real thing you have to pay over $218-that's with a prescription plan. Without insurance-over $500 for 18 pills. He cancelled my order and gave me the generic for $10. It's enough to give you a headache!
Remember to vote for Josef!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Photo Phriday - Barrett's Home!

Barrett is finally home! I was able to pick him up at 3PM this afternoon. As you can see he doesn't have an e-collar (thank goodness) but instead has a corset like thing. He's on antibiotics and I need to ice the suture spot every few hours. The incision is HUGE; almost his whole back end! He already had a bite to eat and is relaxing on his bed. Thanks for your healing thoughts and prayers. I'm so glad he's finally home.
Don't forget-vote for Josef!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Barrett's Awake From Surgery

The vet just called. They did the surgery and Barrett is OK. However, he's having some post op bleeding and may not be able to come home tonight. Aughhhhh!!! I just want my dog back. I have to call around 6PM and we'll see. The vet's leaving it up to me if I want to send the tumor to the pathologist. I don't think I will. We know what it is, and even if it has changed phases, I don't think treatment will be any different. We'll see

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Getting Ready

I got dressed for the first time since early Monday morning and am actually leaving the house. My cold is much better, but I'm still not feeling great. I'm just going to the post office to mail the rest of my St. Patrick's Day cards-the international ones were sent Monday-then I'm going to visit Barrett at the vet's. They say he's very spry and is getting sick of being in a cage. He's now on oral antibiotics, but still has a catheter in. They'll recheck his blood work in the morning and then remove the tumor, hopefully. Later tonight I'm going out to dinner. Don't forget to vote for Josef!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Still Sick

Barrett is still at the vet's. His WBC is still high, although it is better. They are keeping him there and planning to do the surgery on Thursday. I'm battling a nasty cold, in fact I just woke up from a nap with all the cats. It's cold and rainy, I'm just trying to get better and hoping the same for Barrett. I miss my dog.

Please, remember to vote for Josef!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Surgery Delayed

I took Barrett in for surgery this morning to remove the tumor. However, they called me saying that they can't operate today. When they checked his blood work they found a very high WBC count. Barrett is now on IV antibiotics and will spend the night, maybe longer, at the vet's. His temperature was normal, so we're not sure what's causing the infection. He may have the surgery Thursday. It's so quiet in the house-even with the 3 cats and 5 rats. Sigh.

Don't forget to vote for Josef!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Daylight Savings Time

I almost forgot, but I did remember to set my clocks ahead an hour last night. What's the deal with changing time-forward in the spring and back again in the fall? Now they've even changed when this occurs. Not everyone does it-even here in the US-not all states use daylight savings time. That's so confusing to me, when I think about it. Sometimes I may be X hours ahead, but at other times I'm only X hours. What about people on the border? You leave home at 9 drive to the store across the border and it's 8. What's up with that? Who decides these things?

Don't forget to vote for Josef!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Barrett's Special Day

My parents came up today and we all took Barrett for a drive. Barrett loves the car. He was so good, sitting next to me in the back seat. We drove the country way across town and to a park. We then went for a nice walk. Barrett's nose sure got a workout, I think he may have some bloodhound in him. He couldn't have cared less about the few joggers, bikers, or walkers that came by (not my house, I don't have to keep them away) and enjoyed all the smells. We saw deer prints as well as dog and horse. When we got back home my folks gave him a steak bone. Now he's taking a nap...I think I'll join him.

Don't forget to vote for Josef. We are rapidly dropping our percentage. Please vote every day! Josef is the one in the white lilacs. Thanks.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Photo Phriday - Clean Cage

Here are Snickers and Josef in their newly cleaned cage. Snickers in nibbling on a Dentabone and you can see Josef in the tube. He adores the tubes I make him.

Don't forget to vote for Josef: http://www.theagilerat.com/?id=141 He's the one in the white lilacs!

Thursday, March 5, 2009


I just got back from seeing the neurosurgeon. He wasn't quite McDreamy (although both are neurosurgeons, McDreamy is more brain while my guy is spine!) but he was nice looking, young (only 6 years older than me), and basically a really a nice guy. His goal is to keep me out of surgery. The L4/L5 is no big deal. The L2/L3 thing people couldn't figure out, he could read it. It is indeed a herniation pressing upon a nerve. Thus all the leg issues. He said it's in a really weird spot-only 1% are located there and he especially doesn't want to operate due to that location. He said in time I should recover completely. Yea!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Good Thoughts For Barrett

Please keep good thoughts in your mind for Barrett. The cancer is back. He's having surgery on Monday. He's been very good taking his medications and he's doing OK. My buddy will be 13 years old next month, so I know our time together is limited. I'm grateful that I've been hurt and able to stay home with him, even though I can't bend over or pick him up! He's a good boy!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Competitive Urge

The competitive urge has struck. Normally, I'm fairly laid back and though it would be nice to win things, it's not that important. At least I feel that way until the competitive urge strikes. Then, Katie, bar the doors, I'm going all out and I'd better win! The urge struck at the Zoo's silent auction when I fought for Anna's painting-and won. It's struck again. This time with a rat photo contest. Normally, I hate asking people for help. I really do. I like to be completely independent and not have to rely or depend on anyone else. However, to win now-I need your help. VOTE FOR JOSEF! That link will take you straight to The Agile Rat's Photo Contest page. Scroll down and you can see the contestants. Josef is the Russian Blue Dumbo in the white lilacs. I posted his picture on this blog on March first. He's still in the lead, but it's dwindling and there's a long way to go. You, every IP address, can vote every 24 hours for all of March. This morning I had my doctor's appointment-and I asked him to vote. I also asked the receptionist on the way out. I'm asking everyone-please vote and spread the word to friends, family, neighbors, everyone. See someone you'd like to meet and need an excuse to talk to him or her? Go up and ask him/her to vote for your friend's pet rat. That'll get a conversation going. Thanks and I really do appreciate your help.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Road to the Roses Update

I'm improving on my Road to the Roses. I'm now ranked 2,379 with a total of 32 points. I had 3 horses running this past weekend. Unfortunately, Captain Candyman Can couldn't. He finished just out of the money in 4th-so I got no points for him. Beethoven came in 3rd in that same race-so I got 3 points. Fortunately my star grapefruit brought home the money in a different race. The Pamplemousse won The Sham with Alex Solis so I got 8 points for the horse PLUS 5 as Alex is one of my jockeys! So, out of 5 horses that have run so far in the qualifying races 3 have won, 1 showed and one was out of luck! Not bad.

Don't forget to vote for Josef every day! He's the one in the lilacs. Thanks!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Vote for Josef!

My sweet little boy Josef is in a photo contest at The Agile Rat. Please vote for him. You can vote every 24 hours per IP address. Tell your friends, tell your neighbors, tell your coworkers, heck, go tell some strangers. Josef has some stiff competition and we want to win the prizes! Please vote every day for the month of March. http://www.theagilerat.com/?id=141 Thanks!