What happened, you ask, to the first half/three quarters of 2003? Well, we moved out of our old place and into a MUCH TINIER new one, which is rural enough that cable modem or DSL were unavailable...until about December. So updating my pages was laborious and frankly, no longer worth it. But now, woo hoo! Someday I'll write a synopsis of 2003--basically we were broke, in a tiny place, and scared of losing even that.

Tuesday, September 16, 2003

Delta died.
I came home after a weekend away to the smell of death when I opened the front door. It was so strong I instantly started crying and panicing. I knew someone had died, just not who.
I checked cats. furkids, geckos. ball pythons. ttk started checking critters too. He looked in my cornsnake cage and said he found it. I almost couldn't breathe and asked "which one?"
"A silver and grey one."
She was beautiful.
No signs of sickness whatsoever.
she hadn't eaten last week, but that was not unusual.
That was Sunday night.
I utterly lost my shit, was hysterical and sobbing and crying, and ttk brought me traquilizers to try to calm me down.
I then took more on my own--I just wanted to be numb.
I'm not sure what all I took. On this side of it, I'm lucky I didn't OD completely...but I did put myself under from Sunday night to about 2 hours ago. Monday didn't exist for me.

Wednesday, September 16, 2003

While I am doing all the reptile rescue I do, and deal with all the PEOPLE I have to deal with, I just keep reminding myself that I am doing it for the animals.

And the animals in turn keep me alive.

I've been suicidal for years. It's not something I even talk about much anymore--it's as much a part of me as my hair: It's just there. When I am doing well, there is NO WAY I would leave this life...but I can't guarantee how I feel when I am doing poorly.

When I crash, all bets are off. It's not so much of a death as it is an end.

But animals with their simplistic needs and survival instincts keep a part of me focussed on being here.
This is not meant to be overly dramatic but is more matter-of-fact.
ttk keeps getting mad at me because he feels I am trying to "spread my bad mood around." But it isn't that. It's more like fighting with him becomes very immediate and gets my mind off of escape. When he comforts me, it just makes me focus more on the pain, and the emptiness behind it.
I could kill that rooster now with no guilt. But I won't--it'll take too much effort and I have no energy outside as well as inside.

Saturday, September 20, 2003


I was invited as part of NBHS (local herp club) to come and give a reptile presentation to kids/adults at Safari West...in exchange, they offered us a free tour (people pay $58 bucks apiece to go on these tours!) and it was a BLAST. An African safari, only it was not as hot, buggy, dangerous, and long as a real one would be...
we saw all sorts of ungulates, ruminates, birds, and big cats.

The reptile presentation went really well, and was after the three hour driving/walking tour. Which meant I was really tired, had been in the hot sun for too many hours (I really don't DO sun.) and of course had had very little to eat and was starting to shake a bit. Or maybe that was nervousness from presenting to such a large group of people (50+), all of whom had paid big bux to be there.

I usually overanalyze my presentations afterwards, trying to figure out what I could have done better, safer, more interesting, etc., but I REFUSE to this time, since it was a presentation put on by 5 people, and I was only a small part of it, so I had no real control over it. I just showed off critters and had fun.

If we had wanted to stay for dinner, it would have been $25, EACH. Considering how broke we are right now, we opted for coming home and eating burritos instead. TTK is in the kitchen, cooking away right now, as I am too tired to feel at all hungry, and just want to sleep...but I seem a bit too wired for that, so I'm doing this instead.

I dunno why, but I never sleep very well the night before a presentation--sometimes not at all.

Oh, and yes, I am doing much better since the last entry. sigh. The joys of being bipolar. I have decided to sell quite a few of my critters, but that's just to narrow the focus of my collection and ease up on some of the pressures on me.

I came home to another dead baby cornsnake (number 3) but I am too tired to be upset right now. I'll mourn later when I have the energy for it. It was a noneater that I had been forcefeeding, so I hadn't really expected all that much from it. Still, they are Ikon's babies, and since he died I'd like to get some of these to survive and be all healthy. I probably won't even sell any of them, since they are he and Mirage's. Wow...ttk is waving food at me...I think I am a little hungry after all...

Tuesday, September 30, 2003

[looks at calendar...then watch...]
Is it REALLY Tuesday?!
I worked my ASS off this weekend! [looks behind]
Well, nope, not all of it--it's still mostly there.
Saturday was the big NBHS Reptile Bazaar, which I was working the club table there.

So, my weekend actually started at about 8 on Friday night, when I went to help set up Herzog Hall (an auditorium at the Fairgrounds) in preparation for the event.

Then I came home and tried to get my critters ready for selling them at the club table. I couldn't find my damn deli cups, so we almost made an impromptu trip to Milpitas, where my best friend has a small pile of my junk lounging in her garage. By that time, though, we (TTK and I) would have been arriving in Milpitas at midnight, rummaging through her garage, and getting home at about 3...and I had to be up at 6 am to be at the Bazaar helping by 7. NO WAY was that going to work, so we searched the kitchen and all my different reptile paraphernalia boxes for deli cups we could wash and use instead. Turns out we found enough. I set up geckos, then we went to bed.

Or at least TTK did. I pretended to sleep and actually I think I fell asleep for about 20 minutes in there somewhere...I could have gone to Milpat after all.

Charlie, oh delightful Charlie (who is GOING BACK to Jenn this weekend) served as an alarm clock,as his piercing crow starts at about 5:30 am and continues on and off throughout the day. Side note: if we turn on the porch light for any reason at night, he wakes up and starts crowing. Considering we're night owls, and always take Willow out to pee before heading to bed, I'm sure the neighbors LOVE him. One woman calls him "the rooster who can't tell time." But I digress.

Anyway, up at the crack of Dawn...trying to make coffee, sandwiches for later, and pack the car with everything I'll need, and shower. TTK in the morning is like a monolith: he moves, but it's so imperceptible that you have to go away and come back 10 minutes later in order to see a different position. So I'm trying to make coffee, and he's STANDING in the middle of the kitchen (we have a three-butt kitchen, but there's so much clutter it's really only a butt-and-a-half) staring into the cupboard. ARRRGH!

We finally get out of the house by 7:45. Late. Very very late. But, we get there, and they put him to work carrying heavy things instantly. Me, they send off to Office Max to get a counter, an ink stamp, and a power strip. Seems Jack left these things at home, in Berkeley, and buying new ones was easier than going to get the old ones. So I got to go shopping first thing in the morning, spending someone else's money. :- )

Mind you, the show itself (ie customers) did not start until 10. So I got the stuff (after waiting for the store to open at 9) and got back, and set up the club table with my critters (members can sell reptiles at the club table, without having to buy a table). And the people started coming in. And coming in. And coming in! We had, final tally, 760 people come to the show! And I think I talked to about 500 of them. It was PACKED! At one point, I ran around with my camera, getting pictures of the crowd and the club members, to add to the web page.

I did NOT let myself buy any new animals...and it was hard, but not that hard, since we don't have enough money right now to pay rent...when you don't know where you might be living at the end of each month, it gets easier not to feed the reptile addiction. I actually SOLD several critters, and made about a hundred bucks, which gets us that much closer to rent.

A few highlights of the day:
Al Wolf (Sonoma County Reptile Rescue) brought 15 or so iguanas, and several burmese pythons, an African Rock Python (MEANER THAN HELL!) and a couple of monitors...and adopted ALL of them out (except of course, the ARP), and then people came in and bought reptile supplies for their new pets. Trés cool.
There was a woman there with two tokays riding on her back/shoulders. Tame. With harnesses. (the tokays, not the woman.) They were quite cute, and sweet! Definitely a great photo op, so I took several. :- )
Some guy snuck in, with a red-tail around his shoulders and a plastic bin under his arm, and proceeded to walk around trying to sell them. The NERVE! One of the vendors came and complained...they were in the midst of bargaining a sale with a woman, and this guy saunters up and tells her, "I'll sell you one of mine for $40!" So here are these small breeders, who paid for their tables and the right to be there, and this guy thinks that he can come in, not pay entrance fees, and sell his snakes for free. The Prez, when she was notified, went to him and said, "can I see your hand stamp?" He, of course, didn't have one, so he said he was looking for some friends. (For an hour?) She told him politely but firmly that he had to leave, unless of course he wanted to buy a club membership, then he could sell his snakes at the club table. Of course, he declined, so she told him to leave, and went to get Jack. Now, Jack works as a prison guard, so is the best person to get to deal with sullen pushy men who are flaunting breaking the rules. :- )
Jack escorted him out, just by his mere presence--he didn't have to touch the guy or anything. I watched it happen...it was great. But they should have let me at 'em...with no sleep, and filled with righteous indignation, I would have had no trouble even tho he was twice my size. Heh. I would have loved to do it, too--after having to deal with someone I couldn't stand, all day, I was ready to burn off some of that irritation that I'd been suppressing. And no, I WON'T tell you who it was that I can't stand--suffice it to say that I only have to deal with him every once in a while...it's not usually a whole day, but it was doable.
Another highlight...a friend GAVE me two of the coolest snakes! I had already decided that I could NOT buy anything, so I was kind of mopey by the end of it...I was wandering around talking with vendors and just generally schmoozing, when he stopped me (I can't remember his name right now, which is horrible! He has really great tattoos, though...) and asked me if I wanted any of the three snakes he had...one was a miami corn hatchling, and another was a Baird's ratsnake juvenile, and the third was some kind of king. I was adamantly not looking at any cornsnakes because of the weird plague that hit mine, killing 11 of my adult corns and leaving me with 3. I did not want to bring home any more corns just to have them get whatever it was, and die. Necropsies, blood tests, fecals, nothing has shown what is wrong. So I was writhing in place just looking at that beautiful little baby--as an adult, a Miami corn will be mostly grey, with RED red saddles...gorgeous!
He thrust the deli cup into my hand and said, "Take it!"

Trying to decide, I asked him what the Bairds ratsnake was, and he led me over to where he had an adult male, and showed me the gorgeous colors...imagine a grey brown striped ratsnake, looking kind of like a bland rosy boa, then when it moves, you can see gold and yellow BETWEEN the scales, on the interstisal skin. WOW. So suddenly I find myself the owner of two new snakes. :- )

I've asked Kyna to care for them until I figure out what is happening here, or until everyone that is left dies and I can be sure that my place is safe.

By about 4:30 I called TTK, since it was ending at 5...

He showed up, and immediately started helping gather chairs and tables and putting away all the stuff. Two hours later, we were home...by 8:30 I was in bed. I slept through Sunday, and did not get up until 8 the next night...

Kyna just called to tell me all about the kittens (PLURAL!) she just adopted, and asking when I am coming down to visit...so I will add more later...maybe... :- )


Friday, October 03, 2003

I've spent Tuesday evening, until now and probably through Saturday, down at the Hendras, which has been fun. Not as fun as I'd like it to be, since I can't sleep normal hours, and they all go to be at like 11...which means I am not functioning until noon or so, and Kyna has been up at 8 or so, and her day is half over. I miss out on a lot, but if I could only SLEEP at night, I could really spend time with her during the day when she's awake. Makes me so frustrated! I've been insomnia woman since I was a kid, though. I think it's biological--I am on something like a 40 hour day, while everyone else is all attuned to this planet's rhythms. I can sleep for something like 18 hours, then be up for a day and a half. Of all the biological clocks, I had to get the broken one. No desire for kids, either.

I had a guy tell me once I wasn't a real woman because I didn't ever want kids and was actually kind of grossed out by the thought of a parasite living in my body and feeding off of me until it grew large enough to be expelled. Ugh. No thank you.

Better than what a friend of mine was told during sex once, though--the guy said "Act like a girl!" Right in the middle of things.

She kind of went "What?!"
"You're MOVING too much! Act like a girl!"
Can you say, ICK?!
(we were comparing stories about the worst thing ever said to us during an intimate moment. My worst wasn't what was said, but rather that my then-boyfriend dove in for a kiss, and burped in my mouth. Once again, can you say, ICK?!)

This is cobalt...this is cobalt on Blue Pill...

I had a migraine hit tonite. on the scale of 1-10, 10 being the worst I have ever had, this one was an 8. I had been trying to pretend the Blue Pills (so named because, well, they are blue) were helping, and that the migraine was not getting worse, but you know, that's really a bad Idea. I had just hit the stage where I decided a Maxalt was needed, and was frantically digging for one in my purse while trying to keep up a conversation with Kyna...when I realize I need one, it's usually too late to kick the migraine before it becomes Migraine, then MIGRAINE, of course.

As I fought with the packaging and was slowly passing from sentences to half-finished thoughts, then staggered random words, Kyna was watching all of this and commented on how when I get the Maxalt out it usually meant total meltdown and hot bath and total darkness. I whispered, "almost there..." then sat there with my hands over my eyes, watching the light show in my head. The next thing I hear is Kyna quietly asking what temperature I wanted my bath water.

"HOT." She is so cool. The first time I migrained, she had no idea what to do but was desperate to help...TTK was here, and filled her in on what to do.

So she went upstairs and scrubbed the tub and started the hot water going, and escorted the blind cobalt up the stairs.

You know how when you're in pain, you cry involuntarily, and it actually makes you feel a little better? One of the worst things about migraines is when they hurt enough to make you cry, crying is painful but you can't stop.

So I crawled into the hot tub, lights out and a damp towel on my face, and searched for the moments of Not Pain within the pain. I know a there is hope of relief ahead, that the migraine is lessening, when I have a infinitesimal moment of Not Pain. Then the pain goes on, and I have another heartbeat of Not Pain.

That was 3 hours ago, I think. Pain is still hovering, ghostlike, in the back of my skull, making me feel incredibly careful and somewhat fragile, with a fear in my being that the pain will come back.

And yet, I get incredibly loopy and babbly when the bulk of the pain goes away...I can understand how torture works--I would do anything to stop the pain, and the relief when the pain is gone makes you say EVERYTHING. (Hence this chatty little entry.)

I know I will have to watch myself tomorrow, because I will be incredibly off balance and probably fall several times. And I will be also rather beatific and easygoing and sedate, not like my usual acerbic self.

If Madness is like moth wings, migraine ghosts are like wild mice, trying to sneak in without being detected and always there just beyond your vision.

Or maybe more like bats.
Happy October.
The End.

Saturday, October 11, 2003

A whole week burned...
Sleep. Not Sleep. Pain. Not Pain. Colitis. Not Colitis...
You get the picture.
I decided about a week ago that since we're so broke (INSANELY SO!) that I would make Christmas presents this year. If I start now, I might actually get some of it done.
We went yard sailing today, so I found neat little bottles and fabric scraps as starter idea stuff. It was all cheap, so I have plenty to play with.
ACK! Two of the young chickens I have just started crowing. That means we're gonna have fresh chicken dinner sometime this weekend. They're not all tame and petlike, so they're food. And I can use the feathers in my gift projects. :--)

more later--naptime now.

Of course, first I had to go take the quiz on Mom2All's site:

Maki - "Truly Rare"
What would your Japanese name be? (female)

Saturday, October 18, 2003

Today was a very busy day...

Sonoma County Wildlife Rescue hosted "Wildfest 2003" Saturday from 10-4 in Cotati's main park--NBHS was invited to attend. So, I was up at 7 am, to get over to the Prez' house and help load up all the supplies for setting up the table, then off to the park to actually set up.

When we got to the park, we spoke to several different organizers who said they didn't know we were going to be there (!) and that they weren't sure where to put us. Apparently Sabrena had been in communication with one of the organizers, who neglected to tell the others that we were going to be there. ARRRGH! But, everything turned out well, as they made room for us and were helpful and quite nice about it. :--) So we got set up, and people started showing up. And showing up. And they kept coming ALL DAY! I am completely hoarse today, because there was a VERY LOUD band, and (OOOOO my faavorite (NOT!!!)) karaoke. Nothing I like to do more on my Saturday then to shout about my snakes over the sound of bad singing.
I told Sabrena that if she had mentioned there was going to be a karaoke band (she hadn't known either) that I would have been "busy" and unable to help that weekend. So, sweet thing that she is, she went and bought me 2 barbecued turkey legs. :--)

The wind was kicking up something fierce, and blowing all our informational pages off the table, and trying to blow the canopy over...so, I let Carybdis climb up into the center struts of the canopy, and she held it in place quite nicely (Carybdis is a 35 pound red-tail Boa constrictor.) She was quite happy to lounge above us, and the looks on people's faces when they realized she was real was classic!

I had a bright idea to make up a new "Donations" jar, but I didn't get it together until the last half hour of the show...and people instantly started thrusting cash our way. Our club is not money-strapped, but we're always super-aware of what we have and what we can do with it and how much we spend and all that--all small clubs are almost always on the edge of solvency, unfortunately. I wish we had gotten it out much sooner, and hopefully we'll have one out in the future...

I usually take Scylla on these outings, because she's a little more placid than Carybdis, but when TTK brought her to me, I took one look at her and took her back home--she has some mouth rot starting. I cleaned her mouth out thoroughly with Listerine (believe it or not, it's one of the best and safest things for early mouth rot!) and put her in a tank on newspaper with higher heat than she had.

I am going to clean out one of my big wooden tanks and put the red-tails in that this winter--they are really not happy in the Neodesha cages, probably because they are more exposed than in the wooden cages. The cage I plan to put them in had my cornsnakes in it up until about 3 months ago, and it has been empty since then. I just need to CLEAN it!

In fact, I am going to make myself go do that now, and have a movie as a reward after.

Sunday, October 19, 2003

Another quiz or two...
Your soul is bound to the Tenth Totem, Yen:
The Snake
Yen appears as a vermillion colored cobra. He
embodies passion, rapture, zeal, and
. He is associated with the color
vermillion, the season of summer, and the
element of fire. His downfall is indulgence.

You are most compatible with Bears and White Stags.

Which Animal Spirit Totem Are You?

You should be dating a Sagitarius.
22 November - 21 December
Your mate is frank and open, optimistic and honest.
Though the Archer can display bouts of
argumentative, impatient and critical
behaviour, he or she is extremely adventurous
in bed.

What Zodiac Sign Are You Attracted To?

Sunday, October 19, 2003 (continued)

Ok, so I lied. I am NOT cleaning snake cages, nor am I watching a movie. Instead I am taking stupid quizzes on Quizilla.com.

Which Mythological Form Are You?

You are Form 9, Vampire: The Undying.
"And The Vampire was all that remained on
the blood drowned creation. She attempted to
regrow life from the dead. But as she was
about to give the breath of life, she was
consumed in the flame of The Phoenix and the
cycle began again."

Some examples of the Vampire Form
are Hades (Greek) and Isis (Egyptian).
The Vampire is associated with the concept of
death, the number 9, and the element of fire.
Her sign is the eclipsed moon.
As a member of Form 9, you are a very realistic
individual. You may be a little idealistic,
but you are very grounded and down to earth.
You realize that not everything lasts, but you
savor every minute of the good times. While
you may sometimes find yourself lonely, you
have strong ties with people that will never be
broken. Vampires are the best friends to have
because they are sensible.

Hmmm. I know I am not a fire sign, but an earth sign, and I dunno how bloody sensible I am, either. You who know me can decide how accurate it is...

Tuesday, October 21, 2003

I'm crashing again.
I can't seem to do anything other than hide in bed.
I've been away from my cave for all of 2 hours and already i am heading back.
I hate this, but there's nothing in me but emptiness and a kind of profound silence.
TTK went off to find pallets...we have so many things we need to do.
Hiding time.

Monday, October 27, 2003

It took a week, but I'm coming back up.
I'm talking to people and answering the phone again.

I actually went to visit a friend Saturday, and went to another friend's birthday dinner Sunday night. At the dinner I still felt a bit *distant* but no one except TTK noticed that I was not doing well. The local pumpkin farm has a deal on Fridays, you can get a whole truckload of squash for 10 bucks...and they have so many different kinds!

I'm hitting up the web now to find squash recipes so I'll know what to do with them when I am done having them sit around and be all Fall decorative and such.

A great quote from ttk, heard today-- "I've always loved how your semi-imaginary evil minions take such pleasure in their evil."

Currently Watching Stigmata
With Patricia Arquette, Gabriel Byrne

November 4

I just finished moving all of my entries from a lame blog back to my own pages...what a pain. Sometime I'll actually get around to writing a synopsis of the last year that is not included in my entries--they don't start until August, so what happened between January and August? Lots of stuff. Suffice it to say we moved into a TEENY place; The Sausalito Group went under so TTK is no longer employed (we're broke); Willow's legs have healed so she is an actual DOG bounding about madly; the world has moved on. As usual I wander in and out of sanity, the house wanders in and out of cleanliness, we're still packrats, TTK is still a geek, and we still have too many critters.

Friday, November 7

Image Icon results:

Conscious self
Overall self
Take Free Enneagram Personality Test
Scale (|||||||%) results:
Enneagram Test Results
Type 1 Perfectionism |||| 18%
Type 2 Helpfulness |||||||||| 34%
Type 3 Ambition |||||||||||||| 54%
Type 4 Sensitivity |||||||||||||||||| 74%
Type 5 Detachment |||||||||| 34%
Type 6 Anxiety |||||||||||||||| 62%
Type 7 Adventurousness |||||||||||| 42%
Type 8 Hostility |||||||||||||||| 66%
Type 9 Calmness |||||||||| 34%
Your Conscious-Surface type is 4w3 Your Unconscious-Overall type is 5w6
Take Free Enneagram Personality Test

Tuesday, November 11, 2003

Taking a break from CLEANING.

My mom and her sister are visiting at the start of next week, and our house is so nasty dirty that there's barely even a pathway through it. Ick. At least there's not piles of animal crap around, but the clutter, dust, and aspen bedding bits (oh, and dirty dishes!) is just gross. I used to not be this much of a slob.

quick update: My mom cancelled, since I'm going down there for the holidays. The drive was going to be a bit much. I think it's a good thing, actually, although I am disappointed.

The accumulation of THINGS was under control, the bedroom was neat, and you could actually find the couch. Of course, that was before I got married, and became an animal keeper-person.

And I was broke, so I couldn't buy stuff...

Well, I'm broke again, but I had accumulated a shitload of stuff in the 6 years of married non-brokeness, but even worse I got into the _habit_ of spending. I could go on and on about the culture of consumption, and how we've been trained since babies that our life will be better if we just buy X, but I need to get back to cleaning. As soon as the clutter is moved/put away, I can actually have a cleaning person come in and scrub the floors and do actual cleaning...my mom offered to pay for someone to come in for a day, which will be fabulous when there's actually something for them to clean rather than shuffle crap around.

Oh--a friend emailed me a site with a bunch of fun quizzes:
modesty panel quizzes
but they aren't the standard "what kind of beverage are you?" cuteness--they are more of an adult nature, and an actual _quiz_ where there are right and wrong answers.
Here's the list of subjects:
Mod or Fraud? new!
Art or Crap?
Sexxx or Something Else?
Swiss, Swedish, Danish or Dutch?
Animal Vegetable or Mineral?
Where's Michael Jackson's Nose?
Snack or Scat?

Quizmania, I tell you!

As soon as I find the Original purity test, I'll post that one, too...
must eat food, then clean more. We buried our bed with stuff so we could clean one room, so we need to unbury it.
I'm going to need a vacation after all this cleaning, but I WILL have a clean house!

ps...hi Cellophane!

whew. It's now 11:30 at night--the floors are vacuumed, the critter room is reorganized, about a half-dozen cages are sparkly clean, the bathroom is almost decent, and the clutter has been stacked into some semblance of order. Not good enough for Company, but good enough for Visitors.

Oh--and we unburied our bed. Did i mention that I got two new chicks yesterday?

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

According to the Jung / Myers-Briggs typology, all people can be classified using four criteria:
Extroversion / Introversion
Sensing / Intuition
Thinking / Feeling
Judging / Perceiving
Different combinations of the criteria determine a type. For example: ISTJ
Introvert Sensing Thinking Judging
If you want more information on the 16 personality types, and how to identify yourself without taking someone else's test, go here: Personality Page

This long preamble about personality types is because I took several tests...I seem to be an INFJ.

The original Kiersey temperament sorter that used to be online is gone--the free text was ordered to be taken down, and a commercial site is all that is left. BUT there are other ones out there, and by taking a bunch, you can narrow down your personality "code" more easily.

Here's one: human metrics
Your Type is INFJ Introverted           Intuitive          Feeling           Perceiving
Strength of the preferences %
67           44           44           56           Qualitative analysis of your type formula

    You are:
  • distinctively expressed introvert
  • moderately expressed intuitive personality
  • moderately expressed feeling personality
  • moderately expressed judging personality

The Protector
"As an INFJ, your primary mode of living is focused internally, where you take things in primarily via intuition. Your secondary mode is external, where you deal with things according to how you feel about them, or how they fit with your personal value system."
(a short quote from the page)

Saturday, November 15, 2003

Went out this morning to hang out with and feed the chickens...I got out there late (ie not when the chickens wake up (6 am) but when I wake up (11 am) so the chickens were REALLY awake and EXPLODED out of the coop when I opened the door. I dumped food in their trough and they descended, so I say and watched and talked to them (part of my morning routine now!). Suddenly I became aware of frantic chick peepings, and looked up to see Mama Chicken (so named because she sets on eggs all the time, and is a good mother) outside of the coop, with a teeny horde of chicks scattered around trying gamely to follow her.

She has a habit of disappearing somewhere in the yard for 3 weeks, only showing up every few days or so to cram food then disappearing again, and suddenly reappearing with a clutch of chicks in tow. She's done this three times this summer...

These chicks must have JUST hatched this morning--they were bumbling about, getting stuck in the grass or falling over and kicking feebly before finding their balance again (that feels familiar!). They even still have the egg tooth.

I called TTK and he helped me herd Mama Chicken into the coop...the babies I just collected in my jacket, since they just couldn't keep up. 8 little babies...but no--there was a peeping from the front yard, and ttk went around and found another one. 9 TEENY puffballs! Mama and Dad are banties, so the chicks are about the size of fluffy ping-pong balls. Mama chicken was cramming food like a mad thing, so I stuffed the babies under her and just sat there with her. She's grown quite tolerant of me this summer, so she'll let me pick up her babies and even pet her without trying to peck me to death.

The babies staggered about for a while then decided that under Mama was the best place to be, so one by one they wormed their way through her feathers to her warm underside, and quieted. Gradually I became aware of another high pitched baby call...not any of these, so it must be in the yard somewhere. With no directional hearing, I figured I would not be able to find it but I wandered around to the "front" (the property is shaped like an "L" with the house in the joint of the L...and the house itself does not face the street, but rather the back yard. A weird piece of property, to be sure.) and started looking for a fluffy ping-pong ball.

I spotted this little bit of fluff that looked more like dust or a feather from my black silkies, but I checked it anyway--I figured anything I saw I would have to check since I wouldn't find it by sound...sure enough, it was a little black chick! I can't believe a cat didn't get it! I picked it up and tucked it in my shirt, and it stopped peeping immediately. AWWWW! I took it to Mama and it was so new and dazed that it just sat there, so I stuffed it under her. It's getting dark, so I need to go back out there and come up with something for her to nest in, since I've locked her in the chicken area so nothing snacks on the chicks.

I met someone today with incredibly sexy eyes. You ever notice how some people can be absolutely riveting, such that afterwards you can't really remember what their face looked like?
That was my impression with this guy. And when someone has those eyes, age doesn't matter. I think he is in his early fifties or so. Makes me glad I am on sex-suppressing anti-depressants...

Monday, November 17, 2003

I was insomnia woman at the start of last week, and my body just gave out and insisted that I sleep from about 4 Sunday afternoon to about 4 today. Yes folks, that's almost 24 hours in bed. I woke up for about an hour twice, but I just NEEDED sleep so badly that I just kept crashing. And that was 24 hours without food, as well.

A wierd thing I have discovered: if I get a good night's sleep, I am dizzy the next day. Kinda scary, that. I am due for another MRI of my pathetic brain, but now that our health care is Kaiser, getting anything done medically is like pulling teeth. Plus I dislike my doctor--she's got one of those professional manners that doesn't quite cover her disapproval of me. Whatever. I can deal with that kind of shit from a clerk or a waitress, but from my doctor? Please. But I'm so bad at dealing with stress and legal stuff, and changing doctors is a bit on the stressful side, so I just haven't done it yet.

TTK had a job interview today. Something I have noticed about tech interviews, they take much LONGER than your standard interviews--this one lasted 2 hours, and they want to see him back again for another one on Thursday (YAY!!!).

Since ttk had a good interview, we went out to eat...Sizzler. Damn but they've gotten expensive! 30 bucks for the two of us to eat, and no leftovers on that darn salad bar. We stuffed Willow into her bag and brought her in, and I had to keep sneaking food off my plate so she would be calm. I discovered she hates croutons, but loves cheese bread.

We're now lounging watching movies...we just watched something called Killer Instinct and boy, was that a waste of celluloid! It followed the horror movie pattern so closely that you could predict who would get killed next, just by which stereotyped character they were. The black guy was offed first, then the guy having sex, and on and on...don't bother renting this one!

Next up: "Very Bad Things"

Tuesday, November 25, 2003


Wednesday, November 26, 2003

Yay! So TTK goes in Monday to discuss salary, benefits, etc. YAY!

This gives us something big to be thankful for!

Friday, November 28, 2003

Well, this is the one-year anniversary of Willow's broken legs...she's now completely healed and runs around like a mad rabbit when she gets outside and gets her wind up. Something else to be thankful for.

Tuesday, December 9, 2003

Woo hoo! Cable internet! Yay! I can actually surf the web again! But since the old connection was so flaky, I am now playing the hateful game of catching up on writing stuff that I have BEEN wanting to write but haven't been able to get online to do it.

I seem to be the most creative at 3 am when I am trying to sleep--then my brain goes like a mad thing and won't let go to let me sleep. Oh, and also when I am floating out of a migraine. Figures. The two times when I am LEAST likely to get on the computer or find a notebook.

Wednesday, December 10, 2003

Okay. Deep breath. I just went to my doctor for a minor thing...while I was there she did my "annual" breast exam (if you're like me, you haven't been very regular with your exams).
She found a lump.
I have an appointment tomorrow for a Mammogram.
Just a routine check to rule anything out, I keep telling myself.
This is normal. Routine. Nothing to worry about.
Tomorrow's entry will be all relief and happiness and light, I'm sure.
Well, okay, mostly sure.

I will admit that I am once again feeling my mortality...the impermanence of ME...whether or not this test comes out absolutely negative, it still is giving me something to think about.

Thursday, December 11, 2003

Well, the Mammogram was inconclusive--nothing screamed TUMOR but they couldn't rule everything out since my glandular breast tissue is so dense...another doctor is going to look over the Xrays and I *may* get a letter in a couple of weeks saying I need to come in for a sonogram.
So it's a qualified clear.

I got home and napped and now I'm just really D O W N. Sort of a "falling off the adrenaline bus" kinda thing...

Actually, I rather feel like a huge bus was careening at me, and missed me by inches.

So on to other things in my life...
Tomorrow night my friend's daughter is being installed as an officer in Job's Daughters...I've been invited, and it seems I have no formal clothing that fits anymore. I went from a size 8 to a size 14 from the surgery (steroids), then with much effort back down to a size 12.
All my really cool vintage funky dresses are size 10, and all the nice stuff my mom got me when I was really heavy and felt really gross about myself is size 14. So I have no formal dresses in my current size, and I can't get rid of the size 14 stuff in case I get back up to that size...and I WON'T get rid of all my vintage dresses even though I'll never be back down to that size. Basically, my whole closet is filled with stuff that doesn't fit. And the stuff that does is all casual.

Which means I have to go buy a dress. I hate having to buy something on a schedule--then I have to settle for something rather than shopping without pressure, shopping on the chance of finding something yummy for a later date. Or I have to spend too much.

(quick update here: I bought the coolest vintage coat that I wore as a dress! VERY fun--a shirtwaist-style black vinylly thing. :-)

Monday, December 15, 2003

I'm now ickysick.
We went to Milpitas for a ceremony--my friend's daughter is in Job's Daughters, and was getting installed as Senior Princess.
It was actually fun--lots of pomp and ritual, and purple velvet and teenage girl energy. :-)
I wore heels for the first time in ages..
Heels were scary--I felt so TALL!
I teetered around and scared everyone by trying to fall down every step I came to...but I actually ended up dancing! :-)

Luckily this is an ordinary cold and not the Evil Creeping Crud that is hitting around here like a plague epidemic (I know this because I have almost no fever and I am somewhat rational).

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

It's 34 degrees outside right now. And 7 am.
I couldn't sleep. I think I am tired of being sick...
and perhaps getting better...

------------------later that day--------------------

Wheee. I had the joy of getting sick Sunday, which knocked me out of a business meeting and a party (with the theme CHOCOLATE! Waaa!). And of course I have not been able to get presents made, or animals cared for, or anything. My chickens act like they want to eat me. If I'm late with food one more time, I think they just might.

Thursday, December 18, 2003

One problem with a major menagerie is when it comes to the holidays, finding a pet sitter who can deal with all the different critters, is not booked, and is affordable seems up there as hard as finding a parking spot by the doors of the mall...

I am the Adoptions Coordinator for the local herp club...some very deformed bearded dragons came in a few weeks ago: MBD victims all three. Two of them are bad enough off that they have to be hand fed--one cannot close her mouth completely, or open it very far, and the other looks like roadkill. The roadkill guy I'm keeping, to use as an educational reptile, if he survives.
My husband walked over to the tank a few days ago and said "Uh oh. You have a dead dragon in here."
I said "No, that's Zombie. He's alive and doing well. He's just asleep." (It was night time.)

(To understand why that was funny, I guess you just had to be there.)

Indeed, if you didn't know he was alive, you'd be startled when he moved, but he gets around and actively TRIES to eat. He can actually hunt greens, arduously, but insects (even worms) are waaay too fast for him.

You know when you hit that point in your life where you realize you're definitely a herper?

That hit me today as I was stuffing bits of smooshed up worms back into the corners of his mouth--I HATE kingworms, and I hate worm guts, and yet here I am.

I took an inventory today. Not only do I have my horde, but there are critters here being fostered, waiting to be adopted.
What's here and not mine: 2 kingsnakes, a sudan plated lizard (who might have a home come spring), 3 bearded dragons, 2 white's tree frogs, and MORE firebelly toads.
These I am taking care of in addition to my horde of reptiles, 5 cats, a dog, rats, mice, a parrot, and chickens.
A flock of very pushy chickens.
Oh, and roaches. And two tarantulas. And a leaf bug. And a button quail.
And two chicks that think I'm momma.
My house is so full of other people's animals (the rescues) that my sweet beardie lady, Oz, is staying with a friend in her beardie tank, so I can keep quarantine.

...and a partri-idge in a pear treeeeeeee....