Monthly Archives: October 2013

Spooky Halloween Radio Special!


It’s officially Halloween! I wish to give a plug to my hubby, iDJ, and his weekly international radio show, SoulShenanigans. He will be in the air tonight from 7 to 9pm Greenwich Mean time, or 3 to 5pm US Eastern time.

Please give him a listen live, if you can – or alternately I will be posting a link to the podcast once the show is over.

He’s been working on this all year, it should be a really fabulous show!

SoulShenanigans on or on

His Facebook page: SoulShenanigans

And you can talk to him while he is live on the air, if you want to!



When I was very low with my depression, my mother in law bought me a living plant. It was one I’d never had before, a cyclamen. It was in bloom in June, but went dormant.

Well. This thing has gone craazeee in the last month. We keep it in the bathroom (kitty-free-zone) and it makes me smile with every visit.

It actually has twice as many blooms now as it did when I asked iDJ to take this photo! I think I’m a convert.

New Halloween Decorations!


I had a surprise waiting for me when I got home last week!

No, not a kitty-crayon or even a puddle of puke – and it sure wasn’t a letter from the Publisher’s Clearinghouse telling me I’d won a bazillion dollars. It was better.

Ok so not better than the Prize Patrol being on my doorstep. But since that scam game isn’t run over here, I was never in the running anyway.

It was these!

Aren’t they great?! We had to import them from the US, but going direct to the manufacturers saved a ton over buying them from the UK. My sister got these guys last year and I fell in love – but I had no clue iDJ had remembered and planned and got them for us.

They seem to be enjoying their new Irish environment. I know the cold and rain won’t bother them a bit! We do bring them in when it gets windy – after all, those styrofoam headstones have been found two houses over after a good blow. I was also a little worried that someone would steal them, but we are rather off the beaten track and not too many kleptomaniacs should be down at the end of our dead end road. Hopefully.

The Ugliest T-Shirt Ever


Before we went out Saturday night, drinkin’, hubby was looking for his “Halloween shirt” to wear. I had no idea what he was talking about.

“It’s orange! Not really Halloween, but it’s orange. Close enough.”


I bought this at a thrift shop in Cleveland, Ohio, probably for .59 cents. It appears to be a corporation’s (Flood, whatever that is/was) attempt at team building. It is the ugliest thing I have ever seen – and I had to get it for my future hubby when I saw it. He loves this sort of tacky crap. I still can’t wrap my head around the truly terrible and terrifying artwork – that woman might have (slightly misplaced) muscles, but she’s going to have a really bad back if she stays all twisted up like that. I mentally try to turn her body so she is in proper perspective. Her poor left arm! It’s only about 2 foot long and is springing out of her neck!

And the man? Neck wider than head, thighs nearly wider than his waist. His grimace looks demonic. Maybe it is a Halloween shirt after all.

Good News about Spot!


Took Spottie-Pants to the vet this morning. It wasn’t the vet we’d expected, it was the same fella that was working yesterday. Oh well…

He confirmed that it was not the turkey. Whew! He also doesn’t think there was any blockage, as he would have puked up more than just clear liquid. He said Spot had a nice full bladder (of course he did, he didn’t get to pee before we left the house!) and the colour of his gums was good, and he did several pinch-tests of his scruff to check for dehydration. All okay.

Meanwhile Spot was not himself at all. Curled up in a towel, hiding his face, not even slightly interested in checking things out. This is why I wanted the first vet – so he could see the difference in personality. Sigh.

Doc gave him a shot of steroids, and one of antibiotics – just to cover all bases, the magic combination. We also brought home pills of both – I will be having some good fun the next few days. Pilling the animals is my job. Thankfully I’m good at it. I asked how soon could we expect the steroid to work at giving him an appetite – by tonight? He doubtfully said maybe…

By lunchtime when hubby came home, he saw a marked improvement. Spot was in the window waiting for him, and while he didn’t eat any of the tuna offered, he was checking out the food area. He seemed nearly back to normal.

When I got home he was waiting at the door, said hello to me, and followed me into the kitchen. I unpacked my leftover lunch, offered him a bit of chicken (he loves this chicken, and refused it twice yesterday). He ate it! Hubby went off doing errands and I started the dishes. Suddenly I had two kitty feet planted on my thigh, and a little brown and white face looking up at me and asking for scratches.

I’d say that really was a magic shot. I am SO relieved! While we still don’t know why he did this, I’m happy enough that he seems to be getting over it right quick, with a little help.


Spot update


Thank you all for your comments and suggestions and support. I posted and then went straight to bed, so please forgive me for not responding to any of you as I normally would – another day has now passed and it is best to just do an update post.

Spot spent another night about the same as the last one – he would sit where you out him but didn’t want to move around much on his own.

First thing this morning, I rang the vet. Background – our vet is run by brothers and they are in the office on alternate days. So the one who saw Spot on Saturday wasn’t the one I spoke to today, and if I’d gone in, it would have been the one who didn’t see him so recently. Sometimes I appreciate that I can have one veterinarian office with two opinions, but not this time.

I explained the situation, and he didn’t seem overly concerned. Basically I was told that I could bring him in if I felt like it, and that I could keep trying to tempt Spottie with treats. He didn’t seem to think the raw turkey was the catalyst.

Thinking over it again, Spot had the turkey at about 5pm and wanted more when I got up at 7:30am (and he only had the tiniest amount in the morning, not even a spoonful – he’s not used to treats in the morning). If he was going to have a problem from the turkey, shouldn’t it have hit overnight? When I have something that disagrees with me, I know it within six hours or less, and I’m dammed sure kitty metabolisms are faster. So. Maybe he ate something during the day on Monday when we weren’t home? Like plastic? A plant?

Whatever is wrong, I went to work with a heavy heart today. I hated to ‘wait and see’ another day, but I wanted to get the first vet again, and I wanted to warn my boss that I might be in late.

Do any of you feel nervous when asking for time off work to care for a sick pet? I know if I had kids no one would bat an eye. But it’s an animal. And worse, for Irish people – it’s “just a cat.” Don’t forget, they are still classed as vermin here – the same as mice or rats or badgers or mink or foxes…

But I did give warning, and that made me feel better. Because my boss said “poor cat”, and didn’t make a horrible joke or sneer at me. Whew. I know now that if I’m not happy how tonight and tomorrow go, I have a free pass with no further stress.

Now – Spot came downstairs on his own when I got home, and while he didn’t respond to my greeting, he did head right for the litterbox and had a pee. Since he leaves his tail outside the box when he goes (it’s the type with a hood and door), I could see from his habitual tail-pumping that it was a normal length pee, and didn’t cause him any pain. So he must be drinking, even if I’ve not seen him do so. He refused my attempts to give him his favourite chicken this morning, and again when I got home. He also refused some raw chicken, even though I put it in front of both him and Lokii in the hopes that his competitive spirit would overcome his lack of interest. Nope.

But! He is downstairs, and jumped up on iDJ’s lap earlier all on his own. He showed interest in playing with a bit of string, and he has responded vocally when when we say hello to him – he sounds a bit hoarse, however. He rubbed against the brush when offered (until Lokes saw it and butted in), and is rising to meet a hand that is petting him instead of just accepting it. He’s been up and down the stairs a few times, and is now cuddled with his brother in front of the fire. I’ll be in there with them soon, as it’s gotten pretty cold out here.

I’m reposting one of my favourite pictures of him.


I think I made Spot worse


Hiya. I’m still in a bad headspace because of Spottie’s disease which has evidenced itself in a really bad way; I did something really stupid on Sunday. I rather thought that talking about him on the blog would make it better – isn’t that what everyone says? I know I keep the serious shit to myself. The things that “get” to me simmer below the surface: I don’t even realise that I’ve gone a bit insane. I don’t even realise I’ve changed. I don’t realise that I’m not 100% – not that I ever really am at 100%. Who is?

I screwed up with Spot, it seems. We had a turkey on Sunday, and it of course came with all the ooky bits like gizzards and skin and liver and heart. Yuck – but great for feeding raw to your animals. Now, I know not to give too much of the liver at one time, that’s some strong stuff. I cut little chunks off of everything and both cats were gobbling it up (excuse the pun). I was happy, as they didn’t want any ooky bits of our last turkey – probably last November. I thought, ‘fantastic, all that natural moisture will be great for Spot!’ So, I let him have a bit more than I normally would have. He wanted more!

Apparently not so much. He didn’t want his wet food last evening. Lokii didn’t eat it either. Now, I amn’t sure exactly why Lokes didn’t. Either it smelled funny, or he knew his brother wasn’t feeling good and preferred to take care of him over having a tasty snack.

Lokii has been stuck like glue to Spot’s side. Spot has just been sitting, in the loaf-of-bread-pose, most of the time since last evening. He doesn’t want loving. He will cuddle if placed on a lap or under the bedcovers with a person. He doesn’t want food. I haven’t seen him drink, but have seen him pee. He barfed a few times, nothing but clear liquid. Hubby slept in the spare room, because Spot was curled up dead centre under his pillow and he didn’t want to disturb him. I didn’t sleep much last night, waking up to see how Spot was doing, and missing the human body in my bed, too.

He’s better tonight, but despite showing excitement over his favourite treat, he didn’t eat any. Currently he’s curled up in the crook of my knee, in front of the fire, with Lokii being the bread-loaf next to him, keeping watch.

I’m not too surprised that Lokii is such a good caregiver. I know Spot would probably prefer to feel terrible all by himself – that’s what cats do. Lokes refuses to leave his side, however. He always has refused to take no for an answer from his big brother.

I really want to post some fun pictures that I took before all this shit came down, but it seems I’m still not ready – this post started off as a general update on Spot, to segue into fun pics. But I’m not ready. So here’s a great pic of the boys trying to share our bar-stool chair, taken on Friday.


Spot has kidney disease.


The other reason I’m not all full of happiness and sunshine is that my good old man, Spot, has an elevated creatinine level. Now, it’s not terribly high. He’s just barely into the danger zone.

It seems from everything I’ve read, that the danger zone means his kidneys are already failing. You cannot bring back the broken parts, they are gone forever.

Our vet doesn’t want to give him medication – but he seemed a bit unsure about that, and might change his mind. He did say to do our best to raise the amount of fluids Spot takes in. So far, I’ve had resounding success in just adding some of his special (expensive!) Prescription Diet C/D dry kibble to water. He drank for two solid minutes, and ate the waterlogged kibble, too.

We have C/D “wet food” on order – it is prescription after all – but in the meantime I am going to add extra water glasses, bowls, whatever all around the house so he can have a lap or three whenever he is surprised by water being right there. I already knew that cats love surprise water – this is why I have to have a lid on my bedside water glass! I didn’t like drinking fur and the occasional bit of litter that was stuck between his toes (he always sticks his arm all the way into a glass of water first, the nutter).

We will go back in three months for another blood test, to see if the extra hydration helps. The vet himself might be a bit more worried about that than we are, as Spot bit the hell out of him! This was after a mild sedative… Doc said they nearly put him all the way under as he was fine and happy…until he wasn’t. I get the feeling that next time, he will be more cautious around Spottie than he is around our big dog!

I did find it odd that when he said Spot bit him, my response was, ‘Oh shit! I’m so sorry!’ and he laughed – do people not apologise for such things? I raised him better than that…. I do wonder if he’d have been easier to deal with if I were there with him. Doc wanted to do it alone, as he is such a wiggly cat, but I think he’d have been happier with one of his people there.

He is 11 and a half, I don’t want to think that’s old but I suppose it is. He is always so happy and playful! Just this morning he was leaping around like a kitten and attacking imaginary foes. He loves to be loved on, and follows me around every morning when I make my coffee – standing on his hind legs and holding on to my thigh for dear life, while chatting away at me and expecting the head scratches to continue.

I love this cat so much, and I know he won’t last forever. I will do my best to make sure he gets as long as possible to have all those morning head scratches.






Bloggers and Friends and Privacy and Worry


Right, I have enough small things to post every day for weeks at this point! Just little bits of WTF or things I found interesting.

However, I’m not exactly cheerful and not exactly in the mood for playing around. I’m still worried about my friend. You other bloggers know that of the hundreds, maybe thousands! of followers you have, some are just super special and you know you would have a fabulous time with them in real life. Rockin’ the Purple is one of those people I wish I lived next door to. You others know who you are – but do I know what city you live in? Do I have your partner’s email, or even their name? Who can I contact if you go away for months and I miss you, and start to worry?

Yeah I know, I can make up stuff to worry about quite easily. However, this is a real problem, and it will get bigger as our relationships are changed by the Internet.

Perhaps we need to set up some sort of database for this. I sure dislike putting my close details out there for the world, and out of habit I don’t share a lot of personal information of the type that could be used to contact my family, if I went missing. Hubby knows I have a list of my passwords, so he could notify people on my behalf, if needed. He would think of it, too – as he’s a big ol’ geek.

But what about those who don’t have someone like him? Older people, single people? Are we just meant to forget how they touched our lives, because we don’t get an email update about a new blog post for several months? I cannot do that.

So, if any of you wish to send me an email with contact info, for a just in case scenario – I promise that I will never, ever, abuse that trust. And in return if any of you want my hubby’s email, just ask.

I dislike this feeling of helplessness. I wish I would have thought of this before a friend went missing.