Category Archives: pets

Grass Grass Everywhere

Guinevere is enjoying her walk every morning.  We range through Tangletown, along the Minnehaha Creek Parkway, up and down the streets near our house.  Now that we’ve had some rain and warm weather, we have walking by LOTS of greenery.  Hostas, wild grape vine, irises, ferns, trillium, lilies, peonies, even creeping charley.  But what does Guinevere like?  Tall grass.  Not short grass, not even a long lawn, but tall grass that occasionally shows up in an untended garden, or in a spot that no one seems to be claiming (like the corner of an alleyway).  Whenever we come across tall grass, she always wants to take a chomp.  And she never mistakes any of the other abundant greenery for her favorite snack.  How does she do this?  Is it just the visual cue or does tall grass smell differently?  I can’t figure it out.

What item on a buffet can’t YOU resist?

Driving Miss Daisy

I saw a news story about a high-speed chase in the Seattle yesterday.  The owner of the car struck two vehicles before he headed onto the interstate, where he hit speeds as high as 109 mph.  At one point he drove on a popular pedestrian trail (luckily nobody was on the trail right then).  The police ended up throwing down spikes to end the chase.

During the chase, one officer thought he saw a dog in the driver’s seat and this was confirmed when they finally got the car stopped.  A “sweet” pit bull was in the driver’s seat and the car owner was steering from the passenger seat.  The news story didn’t say who was controlling the gas pedal.  The owner of the car said he was “trying to teach the dog to drive.”  The charges filed against him include DUI, reckless driving, hit-and-run and felony eluding.

Personally I would rather teach my dog something a little more useful – like changing the sheets on my bed every Saturday or how to mop the kitchen floor.

What would you like your pets to do for YOU?

Sewing in Place

Last month I informed YA that she couldn’t go with me to Cub if she didn’t wear a mask.  At that point I had been making due with bandanas and hair binders, but that apparently offended her sense of style.  She eventually decided that my Hawaiian-designed bandana would be OK.

After we got home from the store she informed me that she was going to MAKE her own mask.  When she came into my studio to get the sewing machine, I was a little surprised, since I knew full well that she didn’t know how to use it.  As she got the machine onto her desk, I realized exactly how much she didn’t know when she called me to show her how to turn it on.  I was expecting to spend the next hour explaining everything to her, but she preferred YouTube to my homeschooling.   There were only a couple of times that she needed me to fix the bobbins and then the tension.  She used an old t-shirt for the mask material and then scavenged the elastic from a pair of old gym shorts.  Here is the result (which she did actually wear once):

But it turns out that she likes knowing how to use the sewing machine.  Since then she has repaired a pair of pants and she made a “doughnut” for Nimue so the kitty wouldn’t have to have a stiff plastic cone after the surgery.  Although the doughnut looks good, Nimue figured out how to get her head loose in about 15 seconds. Now there is talk about other sewing projects this summer!

Have you ever sewn anything for yourself?

Cool Clear Water

Nimue has always been fascinated by trickling water; I understand from other kitty owners that this is something she has in common with other cats.  Up until her surgery last week, I never let her drink from the faucet like this, but between the cone of shame and her banishment to the dog kennel, I was feeling sorry for her yesterday morning.  I know this is probably a bad precedent to set and she’ll want to drink from the faucet forever!

Why do kitties like to drink from the faucet?  All ideas (silly or not) entertained!

Adirondack Heaven

Caveat:  The following observations are only representative of my neighborhood and cannot be reliably applied to other areas.

On my daily walks with Guinevere, I’ve noticed that the Adirondack chair is the most popular chair in my area.  There are lots and lots of them, in all colors from natural wood to bright yellow and reds.  While there are plenty of Adirondacks in back yards, there is actually a pretty high percentage of them in front yards and on front stoops and porches.  Cushions can be found as well.  In the backyard of one house on our route there is a beautiful double Adirondack in a dark pine green.  There is even a house over on Penn with a whole row of Adirondacks across the front yard of a house – one in every primary color of the rainbow.

This is interesting to me.  YA and I have two Adirondacks in the back yard – bright aqua (YA’s choice) and I don’t find them to be all that comfortable.   You’re pretty much forced to lean back in the chair.  Except for closing my eyes and taking a snooze, I prefer to sit up.  For keeping up with conversation, for drinking a beverage, for reading, I need to be sitting up.  And, of course, when it’s time to exit of a chair, an Adirondacks is not the easiest chair to get out of.  Although for snoozing in while YA messes with a fire in the fire pit, they are quite nice!

Do you have a favorite chair or snoozing spot?

If It’s Tuesday….

I had to remind myself repeatedly yesterday that it was Tuesday.

  • Slept in – a Saturday/Sunday thing.
  • Took a nice walk with Guinevere – a Saturday/Sunday thing.
  • Leisurely breakfast on the sofa while watching Martha Stewart – a never happens thing.
  • Mid-morning trip to Bachman’s – definitely a Saturday/Sunday thing
  • Two hours of gardening with YA – yep, Saturday/Sunday
  • Grilled a late lunch with YA (Tofurky brats and corn) – wanna guess?
  • Had a fire in the fire pit… with s’mores – need I say more?

I realize it’s only the first week of my furlough, but I’m wondering how long every day will seem like a weekend day?  And when will I get used to it?

Do you have specific days for specific tasks?

The Milk Man

I signed up for home dairy delivery (a milk man) when YA was two.  As a single parent, “running up to the store” isn’t as simple as it sounds, and it felt like we were always running out of Yo-J or milk or eggs.  When a neighbor mentioned that she used to have a milk man, my ears perked up.  I contacted Kemps Home Delivery and two days later, I got a call from Mike.  He started deliveries the next week and he is still bringing us dairy and other assorted food items every week.

There are about 50 milk men in the Twin Cities area and Mike has been in business for more than 40 years.  He loads up his truck every morning at the Kemp’s warehouse and then hits the road.  I leave my order form (and payment for the week before) on the front door.  He gets those items I from his truck, puts them in my fridge, gives the dogs and cats a treat and leaves a blank order form with the amount of the order for me to pay next week.

Mike’s wife, Suzie, does the office and phone management and both of them are as nice as can be.  They have grown kids and two grandkids, who feature in the yearly holiday newsletter.  Every Thanksgiving, they help manage and run a project called The Thanksgiving Free Store.  It’s just what it sounds like, food and other necessities provided for those in need, absolutely free.  They spend the year raising money and getting donations, things like socks, backpacks, warm clothing, coats and food, lots of food.  I’ve been supporting this effort for quite a few years now.

Mike is pleasant and personable.  If I’m home on a Friday when he delivers, it’s always nice to have some conversation with him.  I’m one of his last deliveries of the week, so he is never rushed when he’s at my place.  When we first started deliveries, he used to leave my items in a cooler on the front steps, but after a couple of months, I gave him a key (he has a HUGE keychain).  I figured if we got robbed with no clear break-in, the cops would look to anybody who had keys first; I doubt Mike would want to put his only business at risk for anything I had laying around!

For the last couple of months, I’ve been worried about Mike.  The Kemp’s warehouse announced (without much warning) that they would only be open four days a week because there were only a couple of milk men delivering on Fridays.  We got our delivery changed to Tuesdays (not a big deal) but I started to think that maybe the milk man business was dying out.  Although Mike is close to retirement age, it would be better for him to retire when it’s good for him rather than for his business to shrink away.

Well, I don’t have to worry any more.  As someone who delivers food to your house, guess whose business has grown dramatically in the last three weeks?  In fact, the demand has grown so much that Kemps is thinking about re-opening the warehouse on Fridays.  And since Mike works alone, social distancing isn’t a problem; Suzy asked folks to re-instate the cooler system a couple of weeks ago, so Mike doesn’t even have to come in the house right now.  As soon as he drives off (Guinevere always lets us know when Mike is here) we go out and get our items out of the cooler.  The only ones really suffering are the animals, who don’t get their weekly treat from Mike!

Are you having anything new delivered to your place these days?