Tuesday, August 28, 2012


So remember the other day when I said I should clear out the weeds, in what used to be my vegetable garden?


I was standing by the kitchen window and noticed the tallish weeds waving back and forth in a non-windy way, as if something was having a stroll through them. I couldn't see what it was, so ran down to the basement where there's a dirt level window.

It was a small groundhog.

Well, that decided it. I was definitely going to make time to get rid of the weeds, because the last thing we needed was a gopher hole in the foundation.

Too late.

I yanked all that crap out and found this:

Here, I'll blow that up for you: 

Little fucker's been doing some excavating.

Anyway, I think it abandoned the hole after it realized there was no more ground cover. I'm going to fill the hole in later today (if it ever stops raining), and see if anything digs back out.

I was pretty surprised that it only took two hours to clear the garden, especially since I pulled the weeds by hand. You more satisfaction using brute force. However, the level of buggage in that mess was unbelievable.  Allow me to share:

Assassin bugs eat spiders.... I like assassin bugs.

A young katydid, I think.

I have no idea what this thing is.

Woolly Bear


There were actually dozens of caterpillars and more of those nasty wolf spiders than I ever want to see. The one above is just a regular dirt spider. Wolf spiders are much more special. They're about 4 inches across, meaty, and run fast. I tried getting a picture of one - I swear I looked away for one second to focus the camera and it disappeared. That's how fast they are. Poof! Into another dimension. Or possibly my pants.

Also, what are these? Satan's fungus?

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Puddles And Butt Cutt

The cat woke me up the other morning, yowling. He hasn't done that in ages, and it usually means he peed somewhere. He likes to let us know when he's guilty of something.

I imagine a little Richard Lewis cat doing his neurotic stand up routine:

"Should I tell them I peed?...No, I should go hide. No. Wait, I'll tell them, THEN go hide. I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DOOOOOO!"

But yeah, a big puddle of pee. A human would be hard pressed to produce that quantity of urine.

The next morning, same thing, different spot. At four in the morning. Before coffee.

Every night since, I lay in bed wondering where I'll find it tomorrow:

Will it be on the floor,
Or behind the door?
Up on the table,
Or on the TV cable.
Maybe the DVD player,
Or just the radiator?

I took the cat to the vet, in case it was a urinary tract infection. They like to have a urine sample, and even offered to give me a syringe to suck the cat juice out of the carpet. Thanks, but no.

Doc says he's probably stressed about something. Or neurotic. Like I didn't already know that. So they're giving him UTI meds just in case, and after that, if he continues to pee around the house, they suggest Kitty Prozac. 

For serious.

So now I'm powdering the cat's medicine and mixing it into his softie food. Because you know how hard it is to give a cat a pill? Are you overly attached to your body parts? So while the cat's getting all the attention, the dog decided to up the ante.

Now that he's a (mostly) a grown-up doggy, he signals to go outside and do his business. Still, there are times when he does nothing but make a sniff tour of all his previous poos. He's also easily distracted by birds, squirrels, chipmunks, moths, leaves and wind. So a half hour later, dog has done nothing, so back in the house he goes.

I left the room for no more than five minutes.

I smelled it before I saw it...sorry to share, but this is the kind of smell that invades the nostrils, conquers the sinus cavities, rapes them senseless, then settles in for a nice extended vacation.

You're welcome.

Aaaand.....did I mention it was soft? Do you know what that does to a long haired dog? I didn't have time to give him a bath, and he was overdue for a trim anyway. So after mopping him off with baby wipes, he got a real nice butt cutt, Corgi-style.

Then I boiled my hands.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Brave Girl

My daughter and I went to see the movie Brave back in June. We both loved it.

A lot of critics didn't like it because they expected the usual evil monster/princess plot. I also read several articles where feminists railed against the whole Disney princess stuff holding back our girls. Nonsense. My girl was into princesses when she was small, still took up Tae Kwon Do, isn't afraid to stand up for herself and others, loves school, the violin, and most of all, her family. And that's what it's really about.

So even though Brave did have a monster, it wasn't the one critics expected. It's a movie about the special relationship between mothers and their teenage daughters. 

This is for MY brave girl today, as she goes on a little adventure of her own.

Monday, August 13, 2012

In The Weeds

I thought I'd share a photo of my lovely vegetable garden:

You'll note the absence of any vegetable-y goodness. Because of school and our crap weather (second year of crap weather, WOO HOO!!!), I never had time to plant tomatoes. Obviously I never had time to pull out the weeds either.

I'm really impressed with how luscious they are. My only hope is that when they finally die, their decaying carcasses will bring nutrient rich soil for next year. Then again, it might just bring more weeds. Also, that the hell are these? Elephant ears?

This is pretty, but still a weed:

At least the caterpillars are enjoying it:

While taking those photos, there was something moving in there. So I should probably find the time to clear it out if critters are taking up residence.

Speaking of critters, we seem to have a skunk problem. These holes showed up about two weeks ago. Google says they're probably skunk holes. Which is a great name for a rock band.

Yeah, so skunks are digging up our yard looking for food. You'd think with the woods less than ten feet away, they'd have plenty to eat there, but apparently not. This was also the first year we didn't put down any chemicals on the lawn because of the dog. So we've been invaded by skunks, there's more chipmunks than I can count, there's spider trampolines ALL over the grass, and it's just basically a very buggy world here. We also didn't have a winter this year, so I'm sure that helped.

Due to all the wet weather, we do have a lot of moss. This stuff is so soft and fuzzy (and probably has spiders...).


Photo credit: Channel 4