Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

I hope everyone is having a spooktacular Halloween. I spent the day with my animals. I rode Harley earlier, then scrubbed rat cages. Now I'm relaxing, about to prepare some snacks and watch Ghost Hunter's Halloween special, live from my favorite building-Buffalo's Central Terminal. I think I'll start with wine...but I may have some apple cider with whipped cream flavored vodka later. Happy Halloween!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Ghost Walk

I went to the Rochester Ghost Walk presented by the Landmark Society of Western NY tonight. I've been wanting to go for years, and finally went, along with 2 friends. We had a great time.We met up at a church then went out in groups, following a leader carrying a lantern who led us down historic Arnold Park. We stopped at several houses where "ghosts" told us tales of their lives here in Rochester. The houses were absolutely gorgeous. (I need to go back in daylight.) The acting was quite good and the stories very interesting. I got back very late...that's why I'll say goodnight now.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Ring Ring

Is it any wonder that people who work night shift can get grumpy and tired due to interrupted sleep? 5 phone calls today. Fortunately, the first one came before I went to bed. It was an important call too. The bank is done with their part of the refinancing and I should expect a call from the title company to arrange for closing. Then I go to bed. Sound asleep. Phone rings. This too, was an important call. My mechanic said my vehicle was ready and I could pick it up at any time. OK. As I try to go back to sleep, phone rings. It's former president Bill Clinton reminding me to vote. Well, a recording of him. As I'm still trying to sleep-phone rings. My OB/GYN's office reminding me of my appointment next week. Forget it! I get up, walk over and get my car, then back home and back to bed. At this point it's only like 3 PM. I'm sleeping rings. There's silence after I say hello-so figuring it's another stupid election all, I hang up. 7 minutes later my alarm goes off. Needless to say I pressed snooze...a lot! How would you like it if you got multiple phone calls between 1 and 5 AM? That's the equivalent of what we night shifters have to put up with!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

To the Vet

I took all the rats to the vet this morning. When Baron had surgery the vet found some little buggies. They're species specific, and easy to treat, but a pain. We got everyone weighed. When I went in the exam room, the receptionist brought in the chart-looking at the names and dates of births, she quietly asked me, in a hesitant voice, "You no longer have Snickers?" I laughed and said, "He's right here!" My old man really is old at over 3 years and a month! Everyone did really well sitting in that little cup getting weighed. Snickers is by far the heaviest, weighing in at 600 grams. Unfortunately, a lot of that is tumor. Sigh. Dylan is next at 484 and the rest are close to that with the lightest being Marlin at 425. I've started washing fabric, but I won't give them their treatment til tomorrow. I have to keep them separated for a few hours-or they'll lick the meds off each other. Then a scrub of all cages. Hopefully this will knock everything out. We have to be ready for the babies coming!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Do Nothing

What to do? I'll probably do nothing, and that's probably the best option. Some times, when you procrastinate, or just wait, the opportunity expires. While you haven't made a a way, you did. So, what's this all about? Ebooks. Lately I've become a bit interested in the Kindle and the iPad. I am, however, old fashioned and I like nothing better than holding an actual book in my hands. Yet, technology does intrigue me. I started doing some research, especially into the kindle-which is much less expensive than the iPad (of course, you can only read on it-unlike the iPad which is almost a computer with Internet.) But, I'd basically come to the conclusion that I would not buy a kindle, or ask for one as a Christmas gift...although I'd love to get one. One of the main reasons, aside from my old fashioned "let me hold a real book" feelings was the cost. As I mentioned before, I don't buy many books-basically because of the cost. And buying books for kindle doesn't save you much money. Basically the ebook costs $1 less than the real book! So I'd decided, pretty much, to stick with my library books, buying an occasional book at an author signing event. What happened, you may ask? I've been in contact with several authors who are actively promoting their ebooks. Some mysteries are hard to find-and some authors have recently gotten their rights back from publishing houses and can sell their backlisted books on their own. In fact, there's a huge sale going on right now: I've received 2 messages from 2 local authors whose books I really like: Lorna Barrett (Lorraine Bartlett, L.L. Bartlett) and P.B. Ryan (Patricia Ryan). I really want to support authors...and some of P.B. Ryan's books are only $2.49 on sale (most kindle books that I've looked at are $6.99) . According to Lorraine Bartlett, you don't need an e-reader to buy these books-you can download them right to your computer and read them there. I definitely have no desire to do that. Reading at my big desktop is no fun. But if you buy an ebook, do you have to pick a version-or do you just buy it and it'll work for all? You see my dilemma. That's why I think I'll do nothing. Sigh.

Monday, October 25, 2010


You may have noticed, but I have a new blog category, or tag, called music. In these posts you'll find a Youtube video of a song I like. My goal is to post something every day-but some days I don't have much to say...or the time to say it, so music is my cheat. I hope you'll like the songs I post...and take the time to listen. Generally, it'll be unique and/or older music. Hopefully, I'll open you up to more music choices. Enjoy!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

15 Books in 15 Minutes

15 Books in 15 Minutes

You have fifteen minutes to list the top fifteen books that have influenced you as a person.

I admit-I used more than 15 minutes. The first 10 came easily to mind, but then...these are books that have been with me for a LONG time, I was concentrating on the influencing part. I'm not sure if these influenced me as a person as much as me as a reader, and thinker.

1. OK, I don't know the title or author of this first book-but I still think about it. I checked it out from the school library of St. John the Baptist school where I attended from kindergarden through 4th grade. The book was a large picture book, mainly brown in color and had to do with a dragon. I really wish I knew the name!
2. The Secret World of Og by Pierre Berton
3. Half Magic by Edward Eager I adored all of his magic books, this one was the first.
4. From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E. L. Konigsburg Who wouldn't want to live in a museum?
5. A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle (the whole series about the Murry and O'Keefe families, this is the first.)
6. The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis
7. The Last Temptation of Christ by Nikos Kazantzakis
8. In Dubious Battle by John Steinbeck ( I love all of Steinbeck-but this is one of my favorites-try To a God Unknown and Cannery Row if all you've read is the Grapes of Wrath-which is probably my least favorite.)
9. Madame de Sade by Yukio Mishima OK, it's a play-but it's the work that introduced me to this brilliant writer. His many novels are wonderful, but I really like this play as well as his Noh plays.
10. Earthbound by Rebecca Flanders My first paranormal romance.
11. The 3 Investigators Mystery series, created by Robert Arthur Jr. It started as Alfred Hitchcock Presents the 3 investigators and Arthur wrote the first of the books...the series continued even after Hitchcock's death. This series, along with The Hardy Boys, probably instilled my love of mysteries-especially those with comedy and a touch of the supernatural!
12. The Circle of Light series by Niel Hancock-Greyfox Grimwald is the first. Talking animals, fantasy adventure.
13. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams..and the rest of the "trilogy".
14. Polish American Folk Tales collected by Catherine Harris Ainsworth. Honoring my heritage as well as paranormal study!
15. Redwall By Brian Jacques. The whole Redwall series. I'll never forget Jacques' advice to writers-"paint a picture with words". I hope my writing can do that!

OK-what are your 15?

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Friday, October 22, 2010

Photo Phriday - Phall Colors

My maple tree on this cold (38degree) rainy morning.

Thursday, October 21, 2010


I always buy my t-shirts in a size XL. I like them roomy, and you never know the cut. However, some larges fit fine...and even a medium or 2, although that's rare nowadays. At any rate, for work I wear plain colored t-shirts that I get for like $2.50 at craft stores. In cooler weather I like to layer a long sleeved t-shirt underneath. Then I bring a hoodie, as they turn the heat way down in the middle of the night. This morning I went to Walmart to get some flavored water that I take for my lunch at work. Anyway, I saw a good price on long sleeved shirts, so I got a red an XL. I need to remember that apparently big people shop at Walmart. Their XLs are really X. I would have been better with a plain L. But, I got it, I'm wearing it, and I'm not taking it back. Better a bit big than too small.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

I Won!

I follow several blogs and I adore A Garden for the House. Kevin has a great site with lots of wonderful information about plants and gardening-as well as decorating and cooking with those plants. He shares some great recipes too! He recently had lunch with Ruth Reichl. To quote him "Ruth is the former editor of Gourmet Magazine, the former restaurant critic for The New York Times, and the author of 3 best-selling memoirs". He had 2 signed copies of her first memoir, Tender At The Bone and was giving them away! To be eligible you just had to make a comment about your favorite dessert, and subscribe to his blog. I already subscribed...but what dessert to write about? It took me a while (days actually) but I finally wrote and picked my mom's Fresh Strawberry Pie...with mentions of chocolate mousse, bourbon pecan pie, and chocolate chip cookies. (Come on-who can pick just one dessert?!) I'm glad I waited to post my comment. A computer program randomly picked 2 numbers-those posts whose writers would win. I was the second winner! I won!!! Yea me. I can't wait to receive the book-what a wonderful addition to my collection of cooking books!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Overcoming Adversity

It never ceases to amaze me how people and other animals react to horrible things. Some are devastated and never recover, some become bitter and angry, and others go on with a joyful heart. I just read an article about Chipmunk, a little puppy available for adoption at the Erie County Humane Society. Little Chipmunk has had a horrible life. When he was only 24 days old and weighed only 2 pounds, he was surrendered to the shelter after being attacked by a large animal. One of his hind legs was practically destroyed and had to be amputated. Thankfully, he flew through the surgery and recovery with flying colors and has healed nicely. This little guy is full of love and, according to shelter staff, runs like he has 10 legs, instead of 3! When horrible things happen to you, try to think of Chipmunk and overcome the tragedy so you can be ready for a wonderful next chapter!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Where's George?

I don't carry much cash on hand, preferring to pay for just about everything with a credit card. Still, I got some cash from the ATM this weekend as I planned on dining out with friends, going to the Farmer's market, and paying tolls on the thruway-things for which it's better to have cash. SO, this weekend I was giving and receiving paper money. On my way home from Buffalo yesterday I grabbed a single to pay my thruway toll. As I was waiting I stopped and looked at it-it had writing on it. It was labeled as part of a currency tracking project. So I gave another single to the toll keeper and kept this one. Today I went to the site and entered my bill. It turns out this bill started in Amherst, NY and although it went into circulation for the project 191 days ago, I'm the first person to check in with it. I think the whole concept is pretty neat. I'm going to put the bill back in my wallet and pay for something with it. Hopefully, someone else will log it into the system!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Old Friends

This morning I drove to Buffalo for brunch with old friends. I haven't seen these folks since the mid 1980's! I went to high school with 2 of them (although they were a year or 2 ahead of me) and the other was my Rolf. He was Rolf and I was Leisle is a community theatre production of the Sound of Music. I was 15! I also met a college friend of one of the guys-and it turns out she knows another old friend of mine. Small world! While waiting for everyone ( I got there early) I sipped my complimentary mimosa. Then for the meal I had Pannetone French Toast with a cinnamon sauce and marscapone with bacon and a raspberry champagne cocktail. I had a lovely time with great conversation!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Busy Weekend

I have a busy, fun-filled weekend planned. After work I made a stop at the Farmer's Market-unfortunately, my Amish friends weren't there-so no cookies for me. I did pick up some apple cider, potatoes, eggs, and radishes though. Then it was bed time. I woke up and got ready to meet my friend. She came over and I gave her a tour of my garden. Then we went to my friend's craft shop. After spending some time...and money...there we went to Staples-so I could show her what she needed for our cookbook project. Right next door was Bath & Body Shop. I had a coupon-so we stopped in. I was very disappointed in their new holiday scents-still I used my coupon for something else and got a present as well. I was hungry at this point-so we had dinner at the North Chili Family Restaurant. I had the chicken fried steak. Yumm. I relaxed and watched some Brit Coms, but I need to get to bed soon. I have to get up early for another fun day!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


I got an earful this evening. It all started last night. I had gone into the attic and Calumet had gone up as well. Of course, she wouldn't come down-so I left the door partially opened all night and went to work. When I got home this morning Callie was downstairs, so when I went upstairs I closed the attic door. I stayed up for a bit, then got ready and went to bed. A few hours later I woke up when I thought I heard something, but I shrugged it off and fell back asleep. A while after that I woke again hearing a very odd noise. It sounded as if something was wrong with the plumbing! Worried about a backing up toilet or some other plumbing nightmare I got up and walked to the bathroom. All looked well, then I turned and opened up the door to the attic. An indignant Calumet came out meowing and yipping and talking. She kept rubbing against me and touching me, talking all the while. She'd poke me, "MOM!!!!! YOU LEFT ME IN THERE!!!!" Nudge, Nudge, "HOW COULD YOU DO THAT TO MEEEEEEEE?!?!" Smack, "DIDN'T YOU HEAR ME!!!" After some time of proving that she was there-she went to lay down for a nap! Sorry, Callie.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Over the weekend Baron developed a large tumor on his right hind leg. I've dealt with many tumors before-you just have the surgery and remove it-they often come back, but it's a simple and common procedure. I took him to the vet yesterday and left him so that he could have surgery this afternoon. I snapped this picture before I separated him from his brothers, gave him a kiss, and gave him to the vet. The vet called a little while ago. The tumor was super aggressive and  was tied so tightly to a muscle mass that the vet was only able remove part of it, then he kept losing blood. She stopped the surgery. They were trying to raise his body temperature and give him fluids. She hung up and I began to pray. However, she called back-he didn't make it. She kept saying how I was doing the right thing by trying to remove the tumor, as it would only cause him problems...but I am full of regret. It wasn't bothering him yet, I could have had more time with him. He was the sweetest, friendliest, and most outgoing of the Cheektowaga Boys. Yes, he was my favorite of the group, my beautiful blue agouti with the marked face. He was only with me for 5 months, I should have had him for 2 more years. Rest in peace, little one, your loss is deeply felt.


Monday, October 11, 2010

Breast Cancer Awareness

October is breast cancer awareness month. Today I went for my annual mammogram. The place was packed, but I got to talking with a woman waiting next to me...and another across from me, about the Kindle and iPad. She had both and was showing us all the features. Pretty darn cool. Although I believe in real books...that Kindle is very tempting. At any rate I was called before I knew it, got squished (no big deal...perhaps because I am so big...nonetheless...) and went to wait for my results. Talked with the ladies again and before you knew it-we were all out of there. My boobs are normal and I was out in an hour! So ladies, make sure you get your yearly mammograms-it's no big deal and early detection is important! Guys, make sure you tell the women in your life to get checked! As one shirt says-Save the ta tas!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Happy Binary Day!

It's 10-10-10 so I will wish everyone a Happy Binary Day! I remember all the festivities around 7-7-77. That was an especially fun time as it was my Grandpa's birthday as well. There were all sorts of sales and sidewalk events. However, I don't remember 8-8-88 being anything special. I remember my friends hoping their baby would be born on 9-9-99. (My goddaughter was late, arriving on the16th, but another friend's girl did make it on time.) There doesn't seem to be much fanfare around 10-10-10. It's my unofficial goddaughter's birthday. I wonder what will happen on 11-11-11?

Saturday, October 9, 2010

John Lennon Tribute In My Life

John Lennon

Today would have been John Lennon's 70th birthday. Instead his life was cut short nearly 30 years ago, murdered by a "fan". I remember where I was when I heard the news, I remember it as if it was yesterday. I was in the upstairs bathroom of my parent's house getting ready for school. My mom had the radio on, as she does every morning, and heard the news. Talk about, "I heard the news today...oh, boy". Do you remember where you were when you heard the news?

In memory of John Lennon, imagine today. Remember. And enjoy the music.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Photo Phriday - Flags

Nope, it's not a flag football field. It's my front lawn with all the utility lines flagged so that when the landscapers dig...all will be well.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Fall Shows

The fall TV season has begun and now I have to follow some shows. So far I'm watching America's Next Top Model and Top Chef: Just Desserts on Wednesdays and The Vampire Diaries and Grey's Anatomy on Thursdays. What are you watching?

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Hi Ho, Hi Ho

It's off to work I go. Actually, due to vacation and illness this will be the first time in 3 weeks that I've worked more than 2 days in a row. Hmmm. I kind of enjoyed that-work 2 days, 7 off, work 2, 7 off, work 2, 5 off. I wish the whole of work could go like that...getting paid full time, of course!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Happy Monty Python Day

It was 41 years ago today that Monty Python's Flying Circus aired...and dare I say, TV was never the same again! BBC America has a nice little piece about the troupe, including some favorite sketches. I'm not sure what my favorite one is...The Lumberjack Song (but don't forget the whole Barbershop prelude, "Cut, cut, cut"), Nudge, Nudge, The Dead Parrot, Johann Gambolputty (de von Ausfern -schplenden -schlitter -crasscrenbon -fried -digger -dangle -dungle -burstein -von -knacker -thrasher -apple -banger -horowitz -ticolensic -grander -knotty -spelltinkle -grandlich -grumblemeyer -spelterwasser -kürstlich -himbleeisen -bahnwagen -gutenabend -bitte -eine -nürnburger -bratwustle -gerspurten -mit -zweimache -luber -hundsfut -gumberaber -shönendanker -kalbsfleisch -mittler -raucher von Hautkopft of Ulm), The Spanish Inquisition (No one expects the Spanish Inquisition!) and oh so many more! Thank you Michael Palin, Eric Idle, John Cleese, Terry Jones, Terry Gilliam, and Graham Chapman for all the wonderful zaniness!

Monday, October 4, 2010


It's a rainy day today with more rain in the forecast. Works for me though. I went to the barn to groom Harley-not enough energy to ride. Now I'm about to lay down before heading back to work. I'm still sick and hardly have any energy, but I must return. Hopefully all will be well.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Still Sick

Although I'm feeling better, I'm still sick.  I actually left the house today for the first time since coming home Wednesday morning. I needed a special paper to finish up my Halloween cards and meat! I was only gone for 2 hours-but it wiped me out! I ate a small lunch, then it was back to bed. I napped a long time with my sweet bot Aleister. It's back to work tomorrow, hopefully I'll get my stamina back soon!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Wish You Were Here

I just got the cutest postcard from my globetrotting friend, Vinnie. I love it-it has 2 Siberian Husky puppies (just about my favorite) on a Dogsled. But what makes it more special is the postmark. My beautiful Alaskan postcard was postmarked in Honolulu! Love it! Love you too, Vin.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Photo Phriday - Scentbug

This little cutie is a Scentbug. Another gadget to help make your home smell nice..and decorate for the holidays as well. How could I pass him up? I got him a while ago, but just set him up today. You open his mouth and a piece comes out-kind of like the disc drive on your computer. Anyway, you put some drops of fragrance oil on the pad and close his mouth back up. Then you turn on the switch and a battery operated fan diffuses the scent. I have a lovely smelling fragrance called Leaves. I'm not sure how long it lasts, since it is battery operated, but it is nice when you don't want to burn a candle...or for a place where you can't burn one. Plus, I think the little guy is sweet! As for the's just for small spaces, so don't expect it to smell up a room like a Yankee Candle, and also don't run it all the time-otherwise I'm sure the batteries will give out soon-and my bat is as quiet as a mouse. Happy October!