Category Archives: Menagerie

quick garden update and a little devil

When I last left off, two months ago, I had what I thought was a pretty solid plan for our gardens. For the most part that’s still the case, with two big changes: one, I have eliminated garden 3. Last year Enli completely flattened it, and she and the new puppy did so again already this year.

So yeah, we got a puppy. Darren had been wanting one for at least a year, and I finally caved. Her name is Madeline, she’s almost six months old, and I’m ready for her to get older, calmer, and house-trained, because puppy shenanigans and this major change in our routine is destroying me. No more puppies in future. She’s lucky she’s cute.

why yes, she does look very much like her big sister.

Anyway! Garden three is gone, I’m trying to replace it with grass. Once that grows in, at some point we’re going to purchase a small storage shed. Then we can quit keeping outdoor stuff on the back porch, and we can move the lawn mower so Darren doesn’t have to haul it up and down the steps to the garage all the time.

Meanwhile, big change number two is that garden 6 has been thoroughly constructed, instead of waiting until next year. It’s been filled with more plants from Paula (plus my rose bush, which has grown quite a bit!). Over all, Operation Whimsical Yard is progressing quite well.


as useless as searching for meaning in a Pauly Shore movie

Oh hey. Cat photo time?



So that gratitude list thing? I decided it’s too restrictive, so I’m going to modify it. From now on it’s going to be a general list of things I’m happy about that week. Because sometimes life is less “I’m grateful that my cat stopped shitting all over himself” and more “I had the most delicious sandwich on Wednesday and it made my day.”

The cat thing is true, by the way. Darren cheaped out on cat food a couple weeks ago and WInston’s bowels were not appreciative. I got their usual food and the problem disappeared immediately. THANK GOD. And sorry for the details.

I also discovered a waterless cat shampoo that is life flesh-saving.

The sandwich thing is also true: the Italian sandwich from Which Which. Darren brought one home for me and it was so, so good. Although if I ever order it myself I’ll have to tell them to go lighter on the oil. But over all, amazing sandwich (as long as you enjoy meat).


  • We finally got our Girl Scout Cookie order on Monday. Delicious. 
  • Danni won The Biggest Loser and I cried. It was awesome and she is awesome.
  • I’ve been doing some thinking and reading about passion, and it’s been very interesting and introspective and also frustrating. Maybe a future post, if I can ever get my thoughts collected.
  • I learned about (and subsequently joined) this website called Go Chic or Go Home. If you’ve ever seen Clueless,* it’s like Cher’s electronic closet. Well, that plus Pinterest. I’m obsessed.
  • I discovered this Creme Caramel coffee at World Market. Now I want to try ALL the flavors.

*If you haven’t seen Clueless, I don’t know how we can be friends.

Now I’m a believer

First, this link is worth a read. Tina Roth Eisenberg’s 11 Rules for Life & Work.

Nothing particularly exciting to report. I spent most of the weekend in various states of sitting, with two brief exceptions which involved vacuuming and baking cookies. Not at the same time. At one point I sat in a booth at Pizza Luce with Kate, which was a highlight.

Darren and I made a swift trip to IKEA on Thursday to exchange a faulty chair, and to get some new ones to go with the table I purchased a couple weeks ago. We left immediately after I got home from work, which meant that by the time we got out of the store we were starving. As we walked out to the parking ramp we were bitching about our hunger, and suddenly a package of Knackebrod fell from… I don’t know where. Perhaps the sky. Or the rafters, as there was still a roof over our heads. We picked it up, because it was clearly a sign from above and now obviously I believe in all things holy.


Twenty bucks for a package of big, dry crackers? Geez.

Right. So I didn’t do my little gratitude list thing last week because I am not very good at sticking to goals. Real talk, y’all. But here it is! It exists!

  • I had a $25 Michael’s gift card left over from Christmas, and I used it to buy a giant frame for the Doctor Who exploding TARDIS poster I’ve had sitting in the closet for like a year. Thanks to my cousin for the GC, and grateful for my addled mind finally realizing the perfect thing to spend it on.
  • I am grateful that at least one of our cats is not completely ridiculous (Lucy. Winston is psychotic).
  • Related: I’m so glad Enli has been aging so well. She’s not old yet, I just mean she’s a nicer dog now. 
  • I’m grateful for Lena Dunham’s Twitter feed, which I spent the better part of yesterday afternoon reading because work was so, so dead.
  • Not that I’m complaining about a slow day. Those are nice on occasion.
  • Quitting Macy’s was one of the smartest things I’ve done in terms of my own sanity.
  • Two words: Justin. Timberlake.

Sir Winston Purrchill

winston 1
He is so affectionate, it was nearly impossible to get a picture. All he does his purr and rub his face all over us. And climb on our shoulders. I’ll attempt more photos later. He looks so much like Buck, only Buck had white patches. Pretty cats are pretty.

Winston is quarantined to the bathroom until Sunday due to an upper respiratory infection. He has to take meds too, poor guy. It clearly doesn’t phase him, though.

Lucy is wary. I think it’s even harder for her since she can’t see him. She hasn’t had any long-term problems with new animals before, so I’m not terribly concerned. Enli doesn’t really care, although she does get mad at us when we go into the bathroom without her.

So there that is. We’re a three-pet family once again.

What’s in a name

The time has come. We’ve been talking about getting another cat for a little while now, and Lucy is getting nutty without a playmate. The dog isn’t enough for her, it seems.

We picked out a cat tonight. They just got him in today and he won’t be getting neutered until Tuesday, so we can bring him home Wednesday.

the new one

Ugh, his face and eyes remind me of Buck. But this little dude is such a sweetheart. He wasn’t afraid at all, and immediately started purring and rubbing on us both. He’s currently called Danny, but since Darren has a sister named Dani we’re planning on changing it. Since Lucy has a normal name and Enli has kind of a weird one, we’re aiming for something punny. We have a list of ideas currently, and so I bring you a poll!


I said I was going to write the cat post, but I find I don’t have it in me to rehash the entire ordeal. Putting Buck to sleep was the most gut wrenching, heart-achingly painful thing I think I have ever done (and I think I can speak for Darren here and say he feels about the same).

Buck was a weird, sweet little cat. He was a finicky little princess who protested if his litter box wasn’t clean enough or his food wasn’t fresh enough. But he was always good for a head bonk. He loved being scratched on the neck and sleeping on laps. I still find myself glancing toward his perches, expecting him to be there.

We’re going to stick with being a two-pet household for a while. I know it’s a silly thing to say, but our little orange buddy will live on in our memories.

there are never enough comfortable chairs

Yesterday Kate and I did a bit of shopping. Partly out of necessity. She needed some stuff, and I had been desperately wanting to replace a chair in our living room that had seen better days. I don’t have a picture of that one and I am not sorry. But here is the one I purchased:


Kate and I wrestled it into her car and went about our other errands, which included a trip to Joann’s. Kate needed fabric for a curtain, and I needed some so I could transform the 70s orange cushions of that chair into something more attractive. I grabbed a bolt of some lovely grey fabric but there didn’t end up being enough left. I found some cream-ish stuff instead, similar to Darren’s Ikea chair. The grey would’ve coordinated with the couch, but whatever.

I did run into some problems while sewing the cushions. I got pretty far along on my first one, but then the thread started snagging. Constantly. I fiddled with tension and stuff, and it would work for a little bit but then snag again.

Long story short, my machine apparently hates heavy thread. I switched to regular all-purpose stuff and had no problems at all. Ugh.

It all came together in the end though, and I am pleased with the final result.


Now I just need to try to keep it clean.

lucy approves

I have enough fabric left over, I think I’m going to re-do the director’s chair in an attempt to make it something that can hold the weight of a human. Perhaps that’ll be next weekend

Oh hey. I just realized this was number 18 in my 30 by 30. Nice!