Sep. 25th, 2014 07:24 pm
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Sheila is gone, the last of the Pack. I talked to Doc W yesterday evening, and she had an opening today, so I took it. And now I feel like a wretched, wretched excuse for a human being, no matter what I tell myself about her blindness, and her probable bladder cancer, and her problems with her hindquarters, and all the rest.

This is the first time since I've lived in this house that there hasn't been a dog here. It feels empty, and it's unbelievably silent -- even with two cats, because cats are masters of silence. Kethri, I know, is curled up in the back room; I saw her there when I washed the dishes. I haven't seen Merlin since I fed them.

Doc W was good about everything, and Doc P popped his head in before Doc W came in and while Sheila was still beating the floor into submission (circling, trying to get comfortable) to say goodbye to her and hi to me. He'd seen her name on the schedule and made sure he was free to do so. And that's why I love them up there.
malinaldarose: (Default)
I am tired this morning. Yesterday was an easy enough day at work (though I'm verging on the point of having nothing to do again, and I hate that), but there was the finding of the broken window and the fuss attendant on that and the shire meeting and then Lyme stopped by after the meeting to look at the scrap lumber in the breezeway (finally!) and he was here until nearly 9:30. I turned off my alarm at about 4:30 and slept for another hour. I need to stop waking up and turning my alarm off.

Sheila is not getting better. She has been on Baytril for a month now, and I am really wondering about the two younger vets who put her on amoxicillin. Doc W says that the culture and sensitivity clearly show that Baytril is the way to go and amoxi not so much. I'm beginning to wonder if this infection has got such a hold that nothing is going to clear it up. Sheila has been out four times already this morning in the space of about half an hour and she just keeps pacing, indicating that she is not at all comfortable. I am also beginning to wonder if maybe she does have kidney stones in addition to the infection.

The shire meeting was surprisingly well-attended: there were six people there, and one of them hasn't shown to a meeting in about five years. We finally discussed the bylaws, and while I managed to grab a red pen to write on my annotated copy, I managed to not grab my annotated copy which was in the same bag. Anyway, most of it is apparently going to stand, with just the changes made to elections and terms of office. I have to put the whole thing together and get it online by the weekend so it can be voted on at the next meeting. And I still wonder if we should define 2/3 of the populace as "2/3 of the four or five people who bother to show up for meetings." If I were actually writing these things, they would be so full of snark....

I should probably also get myself warranted, but what the heck; I've already been in office for six months, no point in rushing things....

I also learned that there is a situation coming up in which I will likely have to choose whether to be an adult and attend a gathering where The Perfidious Ex and His Twinkie will likely be in attendance or stay the hell away. I am selfishly and childishly hoping the gathering will take place while I am at work so that I have an excuse to not attend. Come to that, the DM and Mrs. DM will likely also be there, and I might actually pay to avoid them....

Today is Birthday Day at work. I am probably not going to contribute since I didn't bake this past weekend and since I'm not going to have time to get to a store unless I get up right this very second, throw on whatever clothing comes to hand, and rush off. Which I'm not going to do. (See above, re: tired.)

Today, I will also have to stop and see Gram after work. I had planned to do it yesterday, but then the deputies at work convinced me I should file a report. That would mean calling the sheriff's office in the county seat, then waiting around the house until a car could get here. It's a forty-minute drive unless there's someone closer (like, say, the deputies in my building, but they're stuck there until at least 5:00 p.m.), and I had the shire meeting at 6:30. Then my sister insisted that the hole had been there for a lot longer, so I just committed fukkitry and didn't call. It's not like my homeowners insurance is going to pay to replace the window. (I really need to find out what the deductible is on that policy; the premium is suspiciously inexpensive; knowing The Perfidious Ex, it's something like $2,000.00, because he would have figured that he could do any work.)

I do not want to go to work today.
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I got up on time this morning (i. e., at 5:00 a.m., instead of 5:40 or later) intending to go for a walk. By the time I finally managed to get Sheila on her feet and out the door, it was 6:15. And then she had to go out again five minutes later. Since I have to go to WickedMart and get food for her (I forgot yesterday) before work, I have no time for a walk this morning. Or today at all, since I'll be stopping to see Gram after work and then I have a meeting this evening that will take all evening.

But I have time for El Jay. I always have time for El Jay, my only friend, the only one who understands me.... What? Oh, and Dreamwidth, too.

Sheila's infection is not clearing up, which means that when she does get up to go out, she wants to go out several times in a row and each time she wanders about the yard, dotting it here and there with bloody urine. It's frustrating for me and painful for her. I need to call the vet's office and ask if there's a doggy equivalent of Uristat (which is a pain reliever specifically targeted for UTIs). Of course, given that she's on Rimadyl and tramodol, she probably can't take anything else....

I suppose the lesson for tomorrow, assuming I haul my carcas out of bed, is to put down puppy pads and just freakin' go walkies. Because when I adjust my schedule to my pets, I get nothing accomplished for myself.
In other news, very little got down around here, yesterday. It was a gorgeous day: sunny, breezy, temps in the 70s. I ran some errands in the morning, sat out in the sun a bit, read a bit, and actually cooked dinner. Now I have leftovers for tonight, which is good since I'll be hurrying.

My parents popped in last night with a small, thoroughly beat-up chest that they wanted to know if I could identify for them. Mom thought maybe it was something D&D-related. (Or pagany, though she didn't say that.) So Dad set the chest down and I opened it to find...mah jongg. It was full of mah jongg tiles. Older ones, and probably not a complete set. I was really surprised that my parents didn't know what mah jongg is, but even more surprised that they'd think I would. Oh, well, Mom thought they were rune-stones or something. I am boggled sometimes.
I am not looking forward to work today. More and more, I begin to wonder if I really could manage to retire when I'm 55 (eight years). I could increase my deferred compensation contribution by a little bit; I always thought that I couldn't get my deferred comp until I was 65, but apparently, I can get it as soon as I retire. Mind you, it's not worth retiring if I'd then have to turn around and go work at WickedMart....
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I got up about half an hour earlier than I normally do this morning -- when my alarm went off, in fact -- but I'd been awake a good chunk of the night, anyway. Probably so I wouldn't miss my alarm. Sometimes, I hate my brain.

My garage sale starts in an hour and a half, but I refuse to go out there and start setting up the stuff that will go in the driveway for another hour and a quarter, even though people will probably start cruising past the house in another forty-five minutes, but I refuse to encourage early birds because they're just rude. In fact, as soon as I get dressed, I'm going to run out to get some chocolate chip scones from the grocery store bakery. (They're not great, but I don't have to make them myself, and they're small and portable.) While I'm out, I'll put up my on-the-corner signs.

Today is supposed to be hot and dry (nearly 90), but tomorrow is supposed to be much cooler (not out of the 60s) and wet. So I am hoping that I made a good call by choosing to open on Friday and have an extra day. (Normally I'd run a sale on Saturday and only until early afternoon.) Of course, if it's really only morning thunderstorms tomorrow as per the forecast, then I can still put out free stuff after 2:00 p.m.

There are still a few things I want to haul out, but if they don't get out, I won't be too terribly upset.

I did take half a day off yesterday to get (mostly) finished up, and did get the front yard mowed. Consequently, my legs are not too thrilled with me this morning. Eh, well, they never are.

And there's the garbage guys. Good.

In other news, the V-E-T called yesterday evening (while I was in the shower), and Sheila does have a urinary tract infection. Not that we're surprised about that. So we will definitely continue the (pricey) antibiotics. Poor old Sheila.

Okay...that's a bit odd; it sounds like the garbage guys just wheeled one of my bins halfway up the driveway. I wonder if I put stuff out for recycling that I shouldn't have?


I watched "The Five Doctors" last night (not even remotely my first viewing; I used to have it on VHS). It suddenly struck me that everyone treated One as an elder sage when, in fact, every single one of them was older than he was! I don't know why it didn't occur to me before. Maybe it was all the fuss over the 50th anniversary and Matt Smith actually being in the same position as Peter Davison when you think about it: the at-the-time youngest actor to portray the Doctor and at an Important Anniversary, too, yet actually the eldest incarnation of the character.

I always feel bad about Borusa because he was a relatively good guy prior to that episode.

It's A Day

Sep. 3rd, 2014 09:17 pm
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I don't have my getting-Sheila-in-the-van platform built yet, so I had to lug the garden bricks out to the driveway again this evening. But it was worth the effort, really, because Sheila can get in the van on her own again. I do wish I'd thought of it two months ago so that I could've taken her to Michigan to see her Sweet Baboo.

Anyway. I had a good long visit with Doc W. I was apparently her last appointment of the day because we sat and chatted for about forty-five minutes. She could definitely feel something in Sheila's bladder. (And Sheila didn't like that; it apparently hurt.) Could be a mass, could be stones. Statistically, given her age, it's likely to be cancer. The only real way to tell is with x-rays, and she is no more comfortable with the thought of anesthetizing Sheila at her advanced age than I am. Fortunately, she has a dog who is actually six months older than Sheila and so she is experiencing many of the same things I am. So she understands. We talked about quality of life issues and what we would do if we did go ahead with x-rays and found something. We talked about The Decision; she understands that I have been thinking about it. She has, too, for her dog.

And this is why when I called last night for an appointment, I specifically asked to see either her or Doc P. They're not going to advise me to go ahead with treatments that are unlikely to work and will only make Sheila miserable, like younger, much less experienced vets would. (Remove her eye, indeed!) She did suggest that I talk to Doc P about accupuncture (or possibly accupressure) if Sheila becomes more uncomfortable. In the end, we decided to go ahead with another round of antibiotics because sometimes Baytril takes a long time to work. Certainly antibiotics are not going to work if she does have cancer or stones, but even if the infection is knocked back a little, it'll make Sheila feel better.

By the time we got home and I got Sheila, the cats, and myself fed, it was getting close to 8:00 p.m., so no progress was made on the garage sale set up this evening. I think I'll probably ask for tomorrow afternoon off to finish up and maybe mow the front yard. The grass growing in the cracks of my driveway is starting to get out of hand again....
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Apparently the Universe heard me quietly celebrating that I would be able to pay my school taxes this year without too much difficulty because Sheila is going to the V-E-T tomorrow....


Aug. 25th, 2014 07:06 am
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Somehow, it's harder to accept Sheila peeing on the floor when she does it right in front of me. I came downstairs this morning to get her up, and she wouldn't, so I went to the basement to feed the cats and get them out from underfoot. When I came back up, Sheila was just coming back through the kitchen having found the back door closed. She then proceeded to pee in the living room and didn't even flinch when I screamed at her, which leads me to think that she is mostly deaf in addition to being mostly blind.


Did I tell the coffee story? I don't think I did. BFT was having trouble with her diabetic cat peeing all over the house and things starting to smell. When I complained about Sheila doing much the same thing, she advised me to sprinkle coffee, let it sit for three or four hours, then vacuum it up. "It'll soak up the smell," she told me.

So I decided to try it. It went about as well as most of my projects.

Apparently, my carpet was wet underneath and the coffee got wet and sludgy. I didn't realize this until I started vacuuming it up -- ahead of schedule because the smell was apparently distressing Sheila. I ended up grinding the wet stuff into the carpet, making a sticky, tarry mess that I had to scrape off the wheels of the vacuum with my thumbnail. It was so bad that after I left the vacuum sitting in the kitchen for a bit and went to move it, it stuck to the rug out there and the secondary wheel assembly actually was pulled out of the base. I think it will just snap back in.

Eventually, I ended up on my hands and knees scrubbing the carpet with a rag and clean water, then going over it again with a carpet cleaner. What a mess. I dyed my fingertips; I dyed my knees; I dyed the uppers of my house sneakers/slippers. And the carpet is utterly ruined. Well, it was pretty ruined before, and I have always hated it anyway, but now I have to live with an even worse mess than I had before.

But the living room doesn't smell of urine, anymore. Now it smells of coffee. I wish I'd bought the expensive stuff so the smell was more pleasing....

It's hard to believe that this is the last week of August. This coming weekend is Labor Day weekend already. I am debating whether or not to drive out to Michigan again this year or just take a few extra days off here and there. (I have another week of vacation time that is not yet spoken for. I actually have two weeks, but I have to save time for Christmas week.) Given that it takes three tanks of gas to go out and back and that I am trying to figure out how to pay my school taxes next month, I probably won't. Probably. On the other hand, I might....

Before too many more weeks pass, though, I need to get at least the decking part of the ramp painted and figure out how to texturize it to keep it from being slippery this winter and get that hole in the foundation patched. The painting is something I know I can do on my own. The patching...well, I suppose I'll check YouTube first....


Aug. 15th, 2014 01:21 pm
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Sheila: I'm beginning to wonder if Sheila is losing her hearing in addition to her sight. The last several days, she has been mostly unresponsive to my voice, even when I'm Very Loud, Indeed. She does have an ear infection, but I shouldn't think yeast would affect her hearing adversely, and I have been treating her for it for nearly a week. Maybe she's mad at me for the ear drops. She doesn't like them.

This morning, it took me shouting at her for the better part of ten minutes to get her up. On the other hand, I did get up about twenty minutes earlier than I normally do, so maybe she just wasn't ready....

LJ Idol: So, I got voted off. (Actually, it's more like "unvoted," since it's lack of votes that gets one booted.) Seventeen weeks is not too shabby, especially when it's two more than I had last time. People have said some lovely things. I am still uncomfortable, though, about admitting that this last piece was not fiction. I should have followed my first inclination, which was to use a bye (free pass) for this week. Some of what I wrote I am quite pleased with and could see expanding. Some of it...well, let's just say that if I hadn't tied someone for least votes in the second or third week, my run would have been much shorter....

Poonstix: I am wearing my squooshy socks to work today so that my legs won't swell and get uncomfortable. (I am also changing the cushion on my chair to keep it from cutting into the backs of my legs quite so much.) Lately I've been doing this when I plan to mow the lawn, but I don't think I'm going to mow tonight, even though the backyard needs it desperately. I just don't want the fair tomorrow to be extra uncomfortable. As it is, I'm going to have to remind the girls that I need to sit down every so often....

Bills: Must remember to get to the credit union and make my car payment. It's four days over due, but I didn't get paid until today....

I Am Groot

Aug. 14th, 2014 07:07 am
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I got a call back from the vet last evening (just as my popcorn was finishing, so it ended up burnt and tossed in the trash). She thinks we should do a "radiograph" to make sure there isn't something in there that's causing all these infections. I talked her into trying a different antibiotic first because a) I can't afford x-rays, and b) it's not "all these infections;" I'm reasonably certain it's the same damned infection that just hasn't cleared up from last time. When you throw a month's worth of amoxicillin at it and it doesn't clear up, another three weeks of amoxicillin probably isn't going to help. So I have to run out to the clinic before work this morning to pick up a new prescription. Good thing it's my 9-5 week and good thing they open at 8:00.

I dunno, though. I feel awkward about arguing with the doctor. Oh, well. If the new antibiotic doesn't work, then I'll take her in for x-rays.

BFT and I are going to see Guardians of the Galaxy tonight with the Js. (Well, probably the Js. At least J1.) Neither of the Js have seen it, but it'll be the third time each for me and BFT. I'm a little surprised at BFT, actually. She doesn't normally do repeats, and certainly not more than twice. I do it all the time; I saw Avengers seven times, for instance. She must really love this movie.

This coming weekend, we're going to the Erie County Fair. I haven't ever been to a county fair. Well. I haven't ever been to a county fair as a visitor. I think the local fair used to do an antique show or flea market, and I got dragged along by my parents -- but wasn't allowed to go anywhere to see anything other than whatever it was we were there to do. This should be interesting, anyway.

My Girl

Jul. 20th, 2014 09:52 am
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I am afraid that it is getting near the end for Sheila. She does not seem to be able to get up without help the majority of the time. She can get her forequarters up, more or less, but cannot seem to get her hindquarters up. Once she is up, she seems to get along well enough. We were just outside, and while I crossed the lawn to look at some flowers, she fell. By the time I got across the yard to her, she had managed to get herself up again, but I think her hindquarters just gave out, so they were already in the proper position for getting up and didn't have to be twisted, as they do when she is lying on her side.

My aunt and I talked about this a little this past week, and about quality of life issues.

Also, I think she may need another course of amoxicillin.
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    The house was 63.5° this morning, so I guess I will leave all the doors and windows open today. Normally, the house gets closed up during the day to preserve the coolth. Well, I'm sure Sheila thinks the coolth is lovely, even if I'm cold!
  • I am debating whether or not to catch the 11:00 a.m. matinee of Transformers. The movie is well over two hours long, so I don't know if I want to spend a nice day in the theater or not.

  • The lawn should be mown, but I have determined that it is not going to be. So there.

  • I can't make up my mind about whether or not to take Sheila on vacation with me. On the one hand, she loves it out there, and there are two large spotted dogs (including her Sweet Baboo!) to keep her company. On the other hand, there are no points of access to the house that do not involve multiple steps. Getting into the backyard from the house involves a two steps down to the lower deck and a step down to the ground, then those steps up again. The family room is a step down from the rest of the house. A single step she can manage, and maybe the deck steps. But to get to the deck from the front of the house also involves multiple steps, and she has already demonstrated on multiple occasions that the steps into the house from the breezeway are too steep for her. At least the guest room is on the first floor. I'm just worried about her -- and maybe needlessly, but I think at this moment, I'm leaning toward leaving her home with my sister (where she'll have Nick to keep her company).

  • I offered yesterday to go halfsies with my sister on a trip to Sterling for the kids. I haven't been in a couple of years, and I do like to go and take photos there. Plus I think the kids would adore it. She says she'll think about it; finances are really tight for her. Maybe I'll offer to foot the bill if she drives (not that I can really afford it, but I really want to go). She mentioned it to my mother and Mom immediately invited herself and Dad along.

  • Meatloaf: I found a recipe that was simple enough and it turned out relatively tasty, though I think the ketchup sauce is too ketchuppy, perhaps because I substituted A-1 (based on a recommendation from With An Eye) for the mustard and brown sugar. But now I have leftovers for cold meatloaf sandwiches.

  • I had bought some fresh green beans the other morning; I meant to have them with the meatloaf and forgot all about them (had a tossed salad instead). I roasted some of them last night. They tasted like all the other vegetables I roast, which is to say, like roast. I think I am using too much olive oil and it is obscuring the taste of things.
  • My sister and the kids came by on Friday afternoon. I had put together a bunch of books for the kids that I stressed were for loan only; when they go back to their respective fathers, I will want them back. Apparently -- and most surprisingly -- The Lord of the Rings is on Niece's approved book list. I would not have thought that, given the religious trash they are forcing her to read, any fantasy would be approved. She was complaining, though, that The Two Towers had been missing, so I lent her my copy. Nephew said that he wanted to read Harry Potter, so after they left, I went right to PaperbackSwap to order the first three books and the Beedle the Bard book.

  • I had no idea that I had a copy of Pippi Longstocking.

  • The books for their permanent library started arriving yesterday. The first two were Dragonsong and Dragondrums. Both were the later editions with the Rowena covers. I like her art well enough (I love her painting of Beren and Luthien, though, upon reflection, it's kind of creepy), but on Dragondrums, Piemur looks a lot like someone I went to school with and Farli (his firelizard) looks entirely too much like Gonzo the Great. Maybe the effect isn't so bad in the full-size original painting. I much prefer Elizabeth Malczynski's covers.

  • Anyway. I am hoping that several more books will arrive before I go on vacation -- especially Harry Potter, for Nephew.

  • I paid Entirely Too Much Money to get an out-of-print filk CD yesterday. It was something that I have on cassette, but the new Woofenwagen does not have a cassette player. It was the only copy I could find on the Entire Internet. I'd been meaning to get the CD for years. I should've coughed up for it years ago....

  • Had my roots recolored on Thursday night. A coworker had asked if I was growing my grey out, like she is. Absolutely not! I just hadn't had the cash to get back to the salon for a few months (my roots were about four inches long). Then it turned out to be about $40 less than I expected, so that was nice. I was shocked when I got to the salon, though, because the guy who has always done my hair had white hair himself! I never realized it before, but he must be in the same age range as my parents. He got tired of keeping up with it, he said, when the conversation came around to such things. After that, I kept watching him in the mirror. Oddly compelling, as my uncle says.

  • I am going to try to write my LJ Idol piece this morning, and to that end, I really need to be finished with this.
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  • Doctor S from the vet clinic called me yesterday with the results of Sheila's culture and sensitivity. He guessed well; the amoxycillin should clear up the infection. He does want to see her back next week, though.

  • My mother stopped by last night with Niece. She thought that I was insisting -- even though I spelled it out in an email -- that my sister MUST take Nick to his appointment this evening because she is his primary caretaker. What I actually said was that I would take him but that I thought Bird should go along as she is his primary caretaker and Doc W is going to want her observations. It looks like the entire family is trooping out there again tonight, and Mom is once again trying to exert control over the situation, because we went around her when she wouldn't take the dog to his vet to begin with (before the appointment where the old vet blew off Bird's concerns). (Supposedly, my sister is going to be too worn out from her thirty-six hour trip to Germany and back to do anything for the rest of the week. Suck it up, buttercup.)

  • Getting the van out of hock cost more than twice what I was expecting and $4 less than I had in my checking account. At least it wasn't $4 more....

  • I finally finished mowing the lawn yesterday...and parts of it need to be done again already.

  • I was sort of at a loss for things to do yesterday; it was too hot to really get into cleaning the house, and I couldn't go outside while I was waiting for the garage to call. I finished my Idol entry much earlier than I expected to. I did find the surface of my desk, so I suppose that's something to be proud of.

  • It is the sort of morning where I had to stand in front of a fan after my shower so that I could pull clothing on. The house only cooled down five degrees overnight. I have an extra fan running right now, but it's not going to do much good. I hate to leave a fan running when I'm not here, but I think Sheila might need it, since she spends all her time in my office, which is the hottest room in the house. (South and west windows; after 10:00 a.m., it gets All The Sun.)

  • I might need to speak to Niece about disrespecting her great grandmother. She's picking it up from Mom, of course, but it's one thing for my 69-year-old mother to disrespect her mother, and quite another for my thirteen-year-old niece to follow suit. I'd say something to Bird, but I don't know that it would sink in.

  • Jeeves, please call my superior at the office; I do not wish to go in today.
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It is Sunday morning and the last tray of cookies is in the oven. When they come out, I will let them cool for twenty minutes or so, then I'm stuffing them in a carrier to take to today's shire meeting/picnic/fight practice. I have no interest whatsoever in the fight practice or the picnic -- I like most of the shire members well enough, I suppose, but not to really hang with -- but I do need to be there to run the meeting.

Well. That's not really true. Former Seneschal seems to have his shit together again, judging by the way he has been at the last couple of meetings. I don't think I'm needed any longer. But I accepted both the nomination and the result of the election (which reminds me; I still haven't been warranted), so....

The only thing I have on the agenda for today is to discuss the changes they made to the bylaws during my two-year hiatus. I suspect that under the terms of the bylaws, they were illegal changes, but they're done, so now I think we just need to get them codified, and this is probably the best chance to get the most people involved.

I'm a bureaucrat. I like the rules in black-and-white.

Anyway. The cookies are done now, and the house is still relatively cool. I can leave the doors open for another hour, but then I'll have to close them up.

I think before the meeting, I'm going to run out to KMart and see about getting some work t-shirts. I was trying to find something to wear to mow the lawn yesterday, and the one t-shirt I normally wear was on the line drying...and I couldn't find anything else. I did find a tee that I wouldn't wear in public (too tight across my belly), but it would do for mowing. But still. I don't have any "play" clothes, just work outfits. That needs to be rectified.

I have not heard from my family at all regarding my sister's jaunt to Germany to pick up Nephew. She is leaving for the airport at any minute, and won't be back home for about thirty-six hours. I guess that they don't need me to take care of Nick at all. Well, I couldn't, anyway, as they haven't gotten me the keys to the house....

Kethri is lying on her side in a patch of early morning sun, napping. Her belly fur is sticking out. She has one forepaw curled up, and one ear is folded back. (Evil Ear Gnomes!) If I move more than my fingers, she will immediately roll to her feet. Ack! She just curled up her other forepaw. The cute! It burns us!

There is still one portion of the lawn to mow. I'm debating whether to do it before the meeting or after. I don't want to do it tomorrow, I don't think.

I do still need to write my LJ Idol piece for this week; tomorrow is the deadline. I have an idea, finally, but I can't decide how to frame it.

Puppy pads. I need to remember to get puppy pads while I'm out. Sheila peed on the floor again last night. At least I found it; she must have done it shortly before I got up and it hadn't completely soaked into the carpet yet. I had, of course, kicked the sheets back last night before I went to bed because I didn't think I needed them anymore.

Oh, wait. It occurs to me that puppy pads might not be a good idea as they are slippery on the bottom. It wouldn't do for them to slide out from under her. Hmmmm. I need to consider this.
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Because I have not made enough trips to the vet clinic this week, Sheila decided she needed an emergency trip last evening. I'd been watching her all day; she'd go out in the yard and pace and pace and pace and pace and posture and nothing would happen and she'd pace and pace and pace and pace some more, and I was pretty certain that she probably was at the very least constipated, so I was going to call this morning, anyway, but then she postured in the house and left behind a spray of blood droplets.

So I called the vet immediately. Fortunatley, one of the vets and one of the techs were actually in the building checking on the hospitalized animals (including Nick), so I got a call right back. The vet tried to talk me out of coming out for an emergency call based on the expense, but he was under the impression that when I said "blood," I meant a drop or two.

Not so much. When I explained that it was more like thirty or forty, he said to bring her right out.

Loading Sheila in the van is not an exercise in hilarity. Even though she has lost weight because she doesn't eat much, I still can't quite lift her, so I had to lift her forepaws in, then boost her weak hindquarters. This hurts her, and makes me very unhappy. Anyway. I got her loaded and drove out there. First thing out of the van, she had to pee, of course, and then I saw that that's where the blood was coming from.

Oh. UTI, then. Not an emergency after all, though I've had one that bad myself, and they're uncomfortable as hell.

So I'm taking her back out there this morning as soon as they open and she's going to hang out there all day so that they can get a urine sample by cystocentesis. (Don't ask; you won't like it.) Apparently this particular vet (one of the new ones) doesn't do clean catch.

I'm probably not going to work after, just because I had a pretty lousy weekend and feel like a day to myself and have half a day shy of a month's worth of vacation time. I will call in as soon as I finish here.

Anyway, I knew that she would pee in the house overnight, so I came up with the brilliant idea of putting sheets down over the living room floor so that I'd at least be able to see where she did and clean it up later. I wish I'd thought of that weeks ago; my living room might not smell quite so much like a doggy outhouse (because there is certainly a spot that I missed).

So that's where Sheila is this morning.

In the meantime, Nick is doing very well and will likely come home today. I may end up picking them up together. It occurs to me that it wouldn't do Mom much good to come up with me to get Nick because I'll likely just be picking him up and not seeing the doc at all. We'll see. I suppose I can ask when I drop Sheila off.

In other Sheila-related news, I got the ramp sealed yesterday. It took longer than I expected and produced no visible results. I hope it works, as the decking material is already showing signs of degradation. Dad says that it's actually more like cabinet stuff; I wish the volunteers had told me that instead of just saying that it's not what they normally use. I suppose the next step will be to actually paint it, but I'll need another stretch of non-rainy weather for that, and it's supposed to start raining later today, I think.

Oh, listen. Work has started on the construction site. Yay? (The vacant land on the other side of my neighborhood has been sold and a local business is putting up a new office building there. I'm so excited.

Right. Time to call the office and get dressed. Where do the mornings go?
malinaldarose: (Default)
The overnight temperature was in the 40s last night. If you ever wonder why I keep extra blankets in the bedroom even in the summer, that's the reason. We'll have two months of sheet-only weather, but otherwise? There are always blankies. At the moment, it is still not quite 50° and foggy, but it is supposed to be nearly 80° and sunny -- and dry! -- today. I'll get my laundry done, but I don't know that I'll get the ramp sealed. I don't think I'll even try, as it's not going to have dried out. And it's supposed to rain pretty much every day this week, too. It really maybe August before it's dry enough.

I bought a carpet cleaner the other day to tackle the living room rug. Sheila has peed in there somewhere, and I missed it, and it stinks. The section I did yesterday seemed to be the worst area, but once it dried and stopped smelling of rug shampoo, it smelled of urine again. So this morning, I tried Febreze. What the room really needs is new carpeting, but that's about as likely to happen as the upstairs bathroom going back in.

Sheila seems to have mostly figured out the ramp. She has turned into it voluntarily to go back into the house a few times, but I don't think she has quite figured that part out yet. Or she forgets. Because I have watched her scouting both sides of it, trying to figure out how to get to the door, and she'll walk right past the bottom and I have to turn her into it. Once actually on it, though, she's perfectly willing to trot right up it, and she has figured out that she needs to stop just before the top so I can open the door for her. I don't actually like the ramp much, but for her sake? It's a wonderful thing.

Now I just have to figure out where I'm going to put my chair when I go outdoors since the ramp runs over the section of the patio where I used to sit. I don't actually like sitting out in the yard where the neighbors can see me, and the patio is a bit sheltered.

I went out to see Edge of Tomorrow yesterday afternoon. The super-bargain matinee was much busier than I expected given that it started at 4:45. I sat in the second-to-last row, and was surprised that a group of three or four late-teens or early-twenties kids sat behind me, while a group of mid-50s people sat in front of me -- which was fine when the woman of the bunch, who was short, sat directly in front of me, but they moved around and a taller, bald guy moved into that seat, and he kept stretching during the movie, while the people behind me kept kicking my seat. I really prefer empty theaters....

Anyway, the movie. I enjoyed it well enough. It reminded me a bit of War of the Worlds, actually, because the character that Tom Cruise played in that was definitely an asshole. Though that character really didn't improve. spoilers ) I do have to mention that at one point, I was waiting for him to say, "I'm taking this loop off."
malinaldarose: (Default)
It was supposed to be sunny and in the 80s today. It is, instead, cloudy, wet, and not supposed to be out of the 60s. I. Am. Disappointed! laundry today because it won't dry -- can't hang it outside, and the basement has tipped from warm and dry to cool and damp (which it does every spring), so I really don't want to hang it down there, either. I'll wash a few things that can just spin in the dryer (sheets, towels, that blanket that Sheila keeps rubbing her face on), but clothing will have to wait until tomorrow. If it stays dry, I might be able to get out and mow at least part of the yard. Yay? Which reminds me...I need to go move the pile of rocks that were unearthed last weekend to dig in the bottom portion of the ramp -- the previous owners of the house put in a stone path in the backyard, and the first few stones had to be dug up. They're big, flat river stones, and they're heavy. I think I'll just lay them flat along the back of the breezeway where I wanted the ramp to go to begin with, and maybe put planters on them. I have planters that would be happy to have plants in them, I'm sure.

I do have to clean the living room carpet yet (though I note that now that it's chilly, I can't smell it anymore), and call the vet to refill meds for Sheila. I need everything for her (her Rimadyl, tramodol, Dasuquin, and heartworm preventative), but can't afford everything, so I need to go count pills and see what I can defer until after I get paid on Friday. (Or get the whole $200 worth of meds right now and just charge the lot.)

A few of the neighbors got together and are having a garage sale today, so the traffic on the street is unreal right now. I am disappointed that they didn't speak to me; I'd've been happy to include stuff. I don't think I'm going to have a sale in two weeks as I'd sort of thought, as I don't have things pulled together. I'm sort of planning to go to an SCA event next weekend, so I won't have any time for pulling stuff out then. The traditional neighborhood-wide sale day will probably be while I'm on vacation. My mother asked if I wanted them to hold a sale for me this year, as they did last, and I'm thinking...not so much. Because they didn't even bother to take care of their trash while they were here. They used one of my little mop pails as a trash receptacle, left their McDonald's stuff everywhere, and...just, no. My parents -- my mother, at least -- refuse to respect me or my property, so, just no.

(Watch me change my mind about that in a couple of weeks.)

There are still ants in the kitchen, so all the stuff I normally leave out -- tomatoes, the butter dish, bread -- had to be stowed in the fridge. I really, really, really hate the thought of putting the baits down, but when I see enough ants on the counter, I'll get mad enough to do it. I just really hate the thought of poisoning creatures that aren't in my house. (The ants carry the poison back to the nest.)

This week's LJI prompt is Barrel of Monkeys. All I can think of is Iron Man 3, when Iron Man is trying to save all the people that are falling from Air Force One, and he says, "Remember that game, Barrel of Monkeys? Everyone grab your monkey!" There used to be a Barrel of Monkeys game in my grandmother's closet, along with Cootie. One or both of them belonged to my mother and/or my aunt. (The Spirograph was my aunt's. Now it's mine.)

My chores aren't getting done while I sit here and type, are they. *sigh*
malinaldarose: (Default)
  • My supervisor is supposed to be back today. She had a minor surgical procedure yesterday. Were it me (I?), I'd stay home another day. But I'm like that. No, she'll come in, and she won't feel good, and she'll take it out on us. 'Cause she's like that.

  • Today is Birthday Day at work. I guess I'm going to take the extra batch of cookies in and get them out of the freezer. In fact, I should go take them out so they're mostly thawed by the time I get to work and no one breaks a tooth on a chocolate chip. (Right. Done.)

  • I am tired this morning (when am I not?) and hating everything (when do I not?).

  • Merlin has lately taken to curling up on my laptop case. Normally, it lives under one of the desks in my office (I have three, but this particular one is only used for storage and to hold the telephone, as neither of my other desks has drawers), but with the new laptop out for repair, the old laptop is in use (more or less), so the case is on top of the desk because I'm too lazy to put it away. So Merlin has appropriated it.

  • I have been drawing in the evenings. Perhaps "doodling" is a more appropriate term. Doodling with intent? None of the things I have produced is as good as my first project, though. Anyway, the table beside the couch is littered with sketchbook, pencils, felt-tipped pens, and books.

  • My lower legs have been swelling. Partly, it's humidity. Partly...I think it's sitting in my chair at work, which is really rather uncomfortable. I'm going to try taking a different cushion in and see if that makes a difference. The compression socks did actually help, but I only have two pairs (one for flying to Italy, one for flying back). I suppose the logical thing to do is get more, but wearing thick black socks during the summer does not appeal. Plus, they're expensive.

  • I should probably wash my hair today. I am not going to. It would take entirely too long to dry, given the current humidity.

  • I am out of TeenyTinyTARDIS pictures. I need to arrange some more.

  • I killed my gerbera daisy, and I've not even had it for two weeks yet. I overwatered it. I might be able to save it by repotting it and letting it dry out. It's not brown and crispy yet....

  • Sheila turned onto and headed down the ramp yesterday morning of her own accord. I had been taking her across the ramp's top deck to the stairs as they were at least familiar to her, then when she was ready to go back in, escorting her back up the ramp with a hand on her collar. So she has at least figured out how to go down it. She still hasn't figured out how to get up it, though; when she wants to come in, she goes to the steps. This morning, I stood at the base of the ramp and called her, and she couldn't figure out where I was. She'll walk up the ramp unescorted once she gets started, though.

  • I still need to shampoo the living room carpet. I'm just going to buy a carpet cleaner, because I'm sure this will happen again.

  • I do not want to go to work today. I really just don't want to face it. Only twenty more years until retirement....
malinaldarose: (Default)
Yesterday was...painful. Disappointing. Expensive. Photorific.

The Students Help People people showed up around 11:00 a.m. The guy in charge vetoed my idea for a ramp off to the side of the breezeway (so my hydrangeas were not sacrificed to the greater good). There wasn't enough space, and apparently, they didn't feel they had enough time and/or volunteers to build a ramp with a turn in it. goes across my patio and perhaps five feet into the yard. (It's not what I wanted, but proverbs concerning beggars and choosers immediately spring to mind.)

They had the frames for the ramp sections prebuilt, though one of them had to be trimmed. Apparently, they've done enough of these that they just got to it. There were...six of them altogether, and they had it built by 3:00 p.m. They did use some stuff from the garage for decking, but it's not the stuff they normally use and I was warned that it probably wouldn't last more than a couple of years. In Charge Guy told me that it would last longer if I sealed and/or painted it, and I conveniently found some sealant in the basement, probably left over from a deck job that HTWIWM did several years back. The stuff is at least six years old, but it should do the trick. I just need to find a day when it's not going to rain for half of it. (It hasn't yet started to rain, but it is supposed to in the next couple of hours.)

When I asked if there was anything that they wanted or needed me to do, In Charge Guy told me to step in and help if I wanted, but I couldn't really see any way to do that more than a couple of times -- and when I did, I promptly ended up dropping a frame section right across the top of my foot. Figures. In Charge Guy handed me his camera and told me to get pictures -- which is something I can do. So I took probably 200 pictures.

I was on my feet for several hours and they hurt so badly by the time they left that I had to go sit down for a half hour or so before I could even pull my laundry in off the line. They still ache today.

So. Ramp.

But. No paint. In Charge Guy said that they don't have enough volunteers during the summer for a painting project; apparently the folks that came out yesterday were it for the summer. So my house is still not painted, and isn't going to be painted. I knew I shouldn't have mentioned it to anyone; I started to get confident and told my grandmother, and she told my aunt....

I'm not certain what to do next. Their flyer said that the homeowner generally pays for the materials, but they didn't ask for payment. They did mention that they can sometimes reuse materials if they are no longer needed; for instance, they built a wheelchair ramp for my vet's daughter after she was in a car accident, but now that she is doing much better, they moved the ramp elsewhere. I suppose I could write them a donation check...not from this pay, though. This pay is pretty well shot.

I did provide drinks and cookies, which seemed very much appreciated -- the drinks more than the cookies, even -- but I still have a lot of drinks left over. Well, it won't hurt to hang onto them for a while.

My neighbor and I talked over the fence while the work was going on, and she started asking me about moving my bit of fence between my house and her fence up to the chimney again so that I can mow it from my backyard instead of anyone trying to maneuver around the holly bushes. Last year, she offered to get a piece of fence that would match what she already has installed, and my passive-aggressive non-response was to let the holly bushes grow so that neither of us could get in there and mow. Yesterday, she asked me if I'd thought any more about it. "I have the fence," she said. So she actually went ahead and bought the fence section, even though I don't want it. Well, I hacked enough of the holly off that I can get in there from the front, so I'm not moving my fence. She acted like I wasn't planning to mow in there ever again. "It'll draw snakes," she said. So what? I like snakes. If I'm lucky, they'll eat the thrice-damned chipmunks.

I like my neighbor. I really do. She's been a damned good neighbor. But she has this obsession with that little strip of land, and I can't quite figure out why.

Ah, well. I'm gonna get my popcorn bucket (mah bukkit) and go see Maleficent.
malinaldarose: (Default)
  • I was awake at 3:30 a.m. I stayed in bed for two more hours, but given the way the day has since gone, I should've just gotten up.

  • Sheila won't eat. Oh, she'll take treats, and if I give her human food, she'll eat it, but she won't eat her own food. But she ate two pouches of her soft food the other morning. I don't know what to make of it. She shows no obvious signs of being ill. Maybe she's just old. Guess I'll try mashed potatoes next.

  • I am having pizza for breakfast. Because I can.

  • The lawn needs to be mowed again.

  • I am going to see X-Men tonight with BFT. She swapped shifts with someone at her job so that we can go this evening.

  • The hood of the van continues to be not-peely. And the people at the body shop hung a small sample of the paint on my windshield wiper lever, so I can fix the dings in the rear bumper.

  • I just turned off both the main furnace and the wall furnace in the basement office. I suppose that means I should also fasten the top half of the basement's Dutch door to keep the coolth and damp down there. (Yeah, I know; other people have had their furnaces off for weeks. Other people don't live with me and my cold toes.)

  • My feet hurt already. But honestly? My feet have hurt since I was 20 years old. It's just a matter of degree most days.

  • I am wondering how much it would cost to hire someone to fix the landscaping in front of my house (I suspect it all has to be replaced).

  • I kind of want to go on a photo expedition this weekend. My first thought was a cemetery, but then I realized that this is probably not the best weekend to be wandering around a cemetery with a camera. I get the impression that most folks think it's at least odd, and at worst sacreligious. Maybe I'll just pick a back road and follow it where it goes.
malinaldarose: (Default)
I have averted a panic. My own little panic, but, well, that's the scale I work on. I was in the basement, changing the kitty litter, when I realized that the dark spot on the floor wasn't just a stain (there are a lot of stains down there). Looking at it from a different angle, I could see that it was wet. I thought perhaps a cat was thinking outside the box again, but when I looked up, the pipes above it were wet. However, when I checked the tag on the nearest valve, it was a gas line. Ummmm.... Gas lines don't get wet when they leak, right? Right. The tag said it was the gas line supply to the stove. Why on earth would pipes under the stove be we--oh. I put a water bottle down next to the stove for Kethri, and Sheila has coopted it for her own use. Sheila. The dog. The slurpy, messy, quite-enthusiastic-about-drinking dog. Water on the floor is running under the stove and dripping through the hole in the floor where the gas pipe comes up to the stove. There is now a rag on the floor under the water bottle; it'll do to keep the water contained until I can get some puppy pads, I guess. (The water bowls in the laundry room are in a custom-made trough. I don't have HTWIWM's skills, so a rag will have to do.)

Since Sheila spends all of her time in my office, I moved her bed in here (after shoving her out the door so that I could vacuum first). Guess where she's lying? Yeah. Two feet away from the bed. Figures. Maybe the bed cover needs to be washed again.

A little earlier, I was trying to decide -- since it's a sunny, slightly breezy morning -- if I could get the laundry done and hung outside before the "PM showers" arrived. I could probably manage it, but why rush about if I don't have to? It's not like I can't put the laundry in the basement as I have done for the past seven months. And then if the grass ever dries out sufficiently, I can mow under the laundry lines. The outside ones, that is, not the ones in the basement. Besides, you know the instant I hang laundry out there, it'll rain. It's just that sort of day.

I haven't yet mown two of the three sections of the backyard this spring, and the section I did mow doesn't look like I did, except at the tips of some of the grass blades, where they're straight, instead of pointy. The grass is getting pretty deep out there. There are probably velociraptors.

I need to go write my LJ Idol entry for this week. It's been percolating for a few days and I think it's ready.

I stopped by to see Gram last evening after work. She is feeling much better now. She sounds much better. She is getting a bit of PT now, and it seems to be helping. She thinks it is, anyway, and that's the important thing. Now if we can just get her to continue doing the exercises when the course is finished -- that's a problem we've been having with her. She thinks she doesn't need to keep doing the exercises when the therapists are no longer coming.


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