“And How Does that Make you Feel?” – Hardy

Everyday Life, Memories, Pets
Hardy, the cat therapist

They finished installing the fence over at Earth-1 and believe it or not, it’s actually quite beautiful. I thought they would try to cheapen out and put up something ass but they chose this black metal-aluminum fence that looks really good and looks like it’ll last a lifetime, the entire length from the street to the back of the garden area.

The story behind the photo: While I was over there, I noticed my mom’s cat Hardy sitting like this on the couch. Made me think he was being a listening therapist in this pose. He’s polydactyl, meaning he has extra toes, as can be seen in the photo by what I call his thumbs showing. They actually use these thumbs to constantly open cupboards and such. It’s pretty annoying actually.

I re-tilled the raised beds out back and removed a bunch of more of the oak leaves detritus, cleaning it up. I want to get most of that stuff done and out in anticipation of the town collecting the yard waste starting next week.

We watched a show last night on PBS entitled Coded Bias, basically about how AI has been programmed, with biases, unintentional though they may be, and how it can affect folks, now and down the line. Pretty interesting stuff.

On my cell, I’ve noticed lately I’ve been getting a lot of “Scam Likely” calls. Of course I never answer, either ignore or add to block callers but they keep coming. Very annoying, probably get about 2 or three a day.

Life is Like Climbing the Stairs

Cape Cod, Everyday Life, GameTime, Lighthouses, Memories, Pets, Scenic Photography
Climbing the stairs to Nauset Light.

Another ‘quick’ shot from the Nauset Light taken a few weeks ago from our little getaway. This was taken as I was coming out of some paths along the shore directly across from this vantage point. This lighthouse is actually very accessible which is nice. I think the brown vegetation also gives this shot kind of a daunting-like vibe. I would be interested in hearing your own thoughts on this, if any of you would care to share. I also posted this photo to a lighthouse lovers facebook group that I frequent and some guy there said he wanted to digitally paint this and send me a copy so I said sure, that would be great. So we’ll see – kinda awesome that I inspired someone to create something off of my own work – that’s pretty cool.

The knuckles on the back of my right hand are all red and dry, almost raw, probably from all the hand washing. One thing I’ve also noticed is that the tips of my fingers seem super sensitive to heat, so like picking up hot things while cooking, like more so then usual. Should I be concerned?

I set aside some time this morning to assemble a new pet carrier for Carson. He has a vet appointment at the end of next week and the carriers we currently have seem to small and just old. Time for an upgrade. I’m apprehensive about how we will get him in there next week as he screams bloody murder if you try to pick him up and he gets panicky scared (we learned this last year), I suspect he has some trauma from wherever he was before to being placed in the shelter where we found him. Poor little guy. Last time he was so scared he literally pooped himself in the old carrier. But it’ll have to be done as he’s due for his yearly checkup.

The condo building next door drama over at Earth-1 continues. The main focal point is the removal of a fence that separates the two properties from each other. As it is now there’s no fence plus they destroyed some of the grass on our property. When last speaking to the fence people over there they said it was only going to go halfway. That would still allow people or animals to go from the community path, behind this new condo, and onto our property unhindered. That was a no go for us. After calls to the city, it seems we may have gotten them to see the light as now we’re told a fence will go all the way across the properties (as it should) and the grass would be replaced. This is due to take place this Saturday afternoon. Hopefully it’ll be acceptable. This condo to begin with is ridiculous. First of all I think it’s too tall (so goodbye sunlight) and from what I can tell the units are very small. Not sure who would pop on this for the money they’re asking for, but I suppose someone will.

Gametime: Been puzzling over Boolean Bloom. I’m currently stuck on Level 8. I mentioned this before, but I love these kind of puzzles to solve.

Brotherly Love Bonds

Everyday Life, Memories, Pets
Cat brothers.

My mom’s two cats are brothers born seconds apart. They will be 4 years old in January. When I saw them sitting together like this I knew I had to try to take a picture. For the record they’re names are Laurel and Hardy. Hardy (on the right) has a little bit darker markings whereas Laurel is a bit lighter but Laurel is also somewhat bigger (the big brother!) and loves to eat. They both are polydactyls which means they have more than the usual number of toes on one or more of their paws. Basically they have thumbs and their paws look like mittens to me. Just the front paws though have this anomaly. Although these two cats are somewhat of the larger variety than a usual cat (I believe they may be descendants of an F1 or F2 type cat hybrid) they are really loveable and sweet, as evidenced by this picture. They fell asleep together like this but were kind enough to remain in this pose as I got on the floor and took some quick cell phone snaps.

Losing Myself Into the Arms of Autumn

Everyday Life, Memories, Pets, Scenic Photography
A bench scene in autumn with a fall covered tree canopy above it.
Autumn has come.

“Summer rushes in on the heels of spring, eager to take her turn; and then she dances with wild abandon. But the time soon comes when she gratefully falls, exhausted and sated, into the auburn arms of autumn.”

Cristen Rodgers

The story behind the photo: This was taken in Braintree Ma. at a place called Sunset Lake. I came across this bench and I liked how this big tree just sort of seemed to have its limbs growing out above it. The original I have of this photo is actually much wider and shows more of the tree spreading out but in order to maximize social media viewership I trimmed it down and gave it a portrait orientation, making sure to try to capture the bench and as much of the tree canopy as I could. Maybe I’ll play around with that one a little bit more and see if I can use it somewhere.

Today rather started on a melancholy note. We learned that LD’s previous landlady’s cute and wonderful little dog “Pookie” somehow got run over in their driveway by a current tenant in a big truck and had to be put down. I feared that something like that could happen someday as I myself was afraid of running it over with my SUV when I visited there a month or so back. This particular dog was so hyper and so small it would be easy for it to get crushed by anyone coming up the driveway. He was such a sweet dog, this really is just devastating news and we are both really saddened by it. Here today, gone tomorrow, right? A good reminder to me that tomorrow is not guaranteed. 2020 just keeps on rolling. Can it get any worse? (Don’t answer that.) I do know one thing. Carson is NEVER going outside!

In other news, I tried my first sampling of a dragon fruit yesterday. My thoughts on it – kind of meh. I washed masks and did laundry. I cleaned out the firepit and obtained some more fallen limbs from the yard for future burning. I used the Instant Pot to prepare a spaghetti squash for later consumption. I finished reading the latest book that I had acquired from a little library. At least the sun come out this afternoon and it was nice and warming and I enjoyed sitting out in it for a little while. I cooked up some gouda cheeseburgers and then I sat on a heating pad to try to alleviate the pain in my lower back. Joy of joys.

Laurel & Hardy

Everyday Life, Pets, Uncategorized

Visited my mom’s today and these are her two cats. They are brothers and seem to be bonded seeing as they’ve been together since their birth. And if one is at the vet the other one wonders where he is and is glad to see him when he returns. They do everything together and have their whole lives.

Hike and a Return Visitor

Everyday Life, Gardening, Memories, Pets, Scenic Photography, Wildlife
Gazebo, Plum Island MA

Today – woke up late changing plans for the day somewhat. Took a drive over to Winslow to drop off some food for the animals, had intention to pick up a “grill box” that a restaurant is doing a few towns over from there. They put it all together and you place and cook it on your own backyard grill. Unfortunately we discovered too late in time to order so it’ll have to wait for another time to try it out. Instead went for a 1.5 mile hike through one of the town’s trails.

Looks like that bunny is coming around again! Carson just watches!

Tonight’s movie watch was Can’t Buy Me Love from 1987 starring Patrick Dempsey. I was saddened to learn that the lead actress in the film had died about 5 years ago from a drug overdose. I really liked her character in the film – I know the role is not the person, but still, it saddened me.

Hope Springs

Everyday Life, Memories, Pets, Scenic Photography
Spring pops in the Boston Public Garden

“The deep roots never doubt that spring will come.”

One thing during the down times I like to do is puzzles, but I’ve exhausted my puzzle book supply. There’s some on order but they haven’t arrived yet, but LD was kind enough to create her own crossword for me to solve! She’s the best! Ordered a bunch of mulch coming on Wednesday so hopefully the weather will be good so I can go put that stuff down. I handed in my HR paperwork today sealing the deal on the previous chapter of my career and emailed my goodbye letter to the colleagues I enjoyed working with over the years. Bitter sweet but looking forward to new opportunities. It’ll take a while, plus all the summer concerts I was going to see this year have pretty much been cancelled so this is really going to a long haul, but it’s what has to be done. I do feel people are starting to go nuts being inside a lot so I don’t see how that’s going to happen with the warmer summer months approaching.

The story behind the photo: This one is actually a coupe of years old but makes sense in this time because it looks so empty yet springlike. I had been invited down to see some therapy dogs in town and before arriving there I strolled through the Public Garden and this shot just looked like it could be good, I especially liked the overhanging tree.

Meanwhile, Carson looking all sexy – this cat is a trip.

More later….

Sun 1/26/20

Everyday Life, Pets, Scenic Photography
Property along Gloucester Harbor.

Finally took down the Xmas tree today and stored it away for next season. Spent some time at the Sanctuary as well as hitting a couple of grocery stores in the afternoon. Did a bunch of cooking this afternoon as well. Sad news about Kobe. Tried to do a impromptu photo shoot with Carson. We did get this one which I thought was pretty good:

Carson. 01/26/20

Appointment Day

Everyday Life, Local Music Scene, Memories, Pets, Scenic Photography
Paine’s Creek last summer.

Lots of appointments filling out today. I had a dental appt early in the morning with a followup in two weeks and then LD had some stuff. Carson had a vet visit as well. That was a bit of trauma getting him in the carrier at first – but he did good while he was there. He was so scared he actually let out a little poop while en route – which actually was advantageous as it was used as his stool sample. Good job Carson! We also did get to check out a cute cafe in Lincoln as well since we were in the area (the Twisted Tree Cafe). In case you were wondering I had a pretty good turkey sandwich.

This seems to be the year of seeing concerts – got a whole bunch of musical acts to see this year. Might see Bon Jovi again (not sure why his prices are so high, he ain’t THAT good – just my opinion), and entered a contest for front row Billy Joel seats at Fenway along with a meet and greet after the show through SiriusXM – hey you never know. Can”t win if you don’t try although I know my odds on that one are pretty slim. This all goes along with acts I plan to see this like Def Leppard, Poison, Mötley Crüe and Joan Jett (granted all those are on the same bill) as well as Johnny Mathis, possibly Damone again and maybe Lita Ford or some such, who knows. Maybe even the Harp Twins. Might be getting tougher and tougher to see local acts these days as the old Middle East is up for sale though admittedly I haven’t done that in quite some time – age and all.

Wish I had CBS All Access – I want to see the new Picard show – heard good things, but I’m too cheap to buy the streaming service for one show. Anyone wanna invite me to a watch party? Heheh!Another show I’m looking forward to Forensic Files II! Wonder if it’ll be as good as the originals – I noticed it even has the same opening theme music!

Got a free shipment of Hello Fresh to try this weekend (friend that uses them got an offer to send a free shipment to us try them out) – we’ll see how it goes (haven’t done any of these things since the Blue Apron days, which we did for a while but quit a couple of years ago). I’m doing the cooking tonight! What else? Still keeping my amaryllis and European Tree going strong, so that’s good. Filled up the bird feeder outside as it was empty – I haven’t really done any birding in a while. Might have to get out there and try some again.

Carson’s Curiosities

Everyday Life, Pets

This cat has some interesting behavoirs we are finding out! He really is quite a character:

  • I mentioned before his using his paw to lap up some water before sticking his face in the bowl. He’ll scoop up like 5 or six pawfuls and lick it off his paw before deciding the lap it up regularly.
  • The minute you show him the brush, no matter what he’s doing or timid he might be, he immediately runs up to it, gets into a flop, and stretches himself out so you can brush him head to toe. Actually, it’s good that he likes this because it allows one to instantly connect with him. It allowed him to get adjusted to us rather quickly I think.
  • He doesn’t like to eat with his back toward anyone, so at times he will contort his body in strange ways while he’s eating to not be in that position. He also has some other crazy contortions he makes while on the cat tree and even just sitting on the floor.
  • He really likes string toys. He chews on them like eating pasta. We got this string toy with a mouse on the end that he absolutely loves. He’ll take it in his mouth and then drag the toy away with him to secluded places. So we let him do that, then we grab it again, plays, and again, in the mouth and drags it away!
  • He hasn’t quite got the hang of visiting us in the bed to say goodnight yet. He’s done it a few times but not as often as we would like – at least not as of yet. We’re hoping that will change. I did notice this morning he likes to sit on the stairs leading up to the bedroom.
  • He actually likes the cat ‘health’ food. Which is amazing, because every cat I’ve ever had couldn’t stand the stuff, though to be honest, they didn’t try it until they were much older and set in their ways.
  • When a guest comes over he tends to hide, but what I like is he can be coaxed out of hiding with possibly a string toy, but especially with the brush. Thank the gods the shelter let us have his – it’s almost like he’d addicted to it!

Are there any strange behaviors you’ve noticed your pet doing? Do they endear you as ours does? If so, share them in the comments!

Carson Kitty Adventures

Memories, Pets
Carson Kitty

Went out for a nice dinner with friends last night over in Dedham. I just wish I could shale this annoying cough I seem to have developed. I know it’s all part of the process of this cold working it’s way through my system, but annoying nonetheless. I think I’ve drunk more tea this week than I ever have in my entire life.

Carson is settling in really nice now. This new addition is making us all very happy, and I think the feeling is mutual!

On the Mend

Everyday Life, Pets, Scenic Photography
A heron waits for some geese to pass by, just like I’ve been feeling.

I started the week feeling a little under the weather, so that’s why it’s been a little quiet around here. I am starting to feel better though so I’ll start updating again. Carson is adjusting quite well, he is really such a love and cute. The little guy has quite a personality. He loves the brush and to be groomed so if he runs away you just show him the brush and he runs right back to you. He can also be coaxed out of hiding by luring him out with his toys. I’ve noticed he also has this thing where when he wants a drink of water he scoops out 4 or 5 pawfuls and drinks it out of his paw before placing his face in the bowl. Never saw anything like that before! Now I just need to get over this cold and I’ll be golden!

Carson First Look

Everyday Life, Pets
“I’m Batman.”

Well, here he is. The newest member of the family. He was apparently already done with the room he was in and wanted to explore the rest of the house already, at least he did at 3 am last night by keeping up us banging on the door. So this morning I let him out and he’s slowly checking things out but overall I think he’s adjusting pretty quickly!

Carson Comes Home

Everyday Life, Memories, Pets, Scenic Photography
Rocks that have nothing to do with Carson, I just like the shot.

Today was the day that we were to meet Carson, the cat that had been living in a shelter in Millis for two months. I don’t know what is was about him when we saw his picture on the website but his big round eyes, dashing grey coat with white paws, and heart-shaped nose cuteness just spoke to us like he could be the one. Around noontime was the appointment and we arrived a little early. When we were finally introduced he looked a little scared at first, but not too bad. He allowed us to brush and pet him and play with him and it was almost like an instant connection. Yes, he is a bit shy and skittish at first, because it’s all new to him, but I could tell he will adjust really fast. I could tell he would be a gentle and friendly cat. Plus, he apparently loves face-scratches which is something LD had become an expert at with Oreo, so right there is a connection that could work for us. He’s shy (but I found not overly so) and he didn’t hiss or scratch, he seemed like a real catch. I knew we could love this cat and that he also has the capability to return the favor.

It was pretty much a done deal after spending some time with the little guy. Carson was getting an all expenses paid trip to his new forever home. After all the paperwork was signed, he got placed in the carrier and I let him say goodbye to his other cat friends at the shelter, who in their own way, probably felt bittersweet. Sad that he was leaving them, but happy that he could find a loving home to be in. I’m sure the volunteers who help out at the shelter felt the same way. Also, I have to say this shelter was amazing so I’m giving a plug to Purr-fect Cat Shelter. They are really a wonderful folks doing good work there so if you’re looking for cat, check them out.

So with that, I’m happy to say that Carson is now a member of the family! I’ll get some nice pictures of him up after he gets a little more adjusted to his new home, that grey and white handsome bundle of joy. Interestingly I had found a Xmas tree ornament while shopping at Target last night with his exact name on it. What are the odds of that? I don’t think that’s an everyday name but it does seem to suit him, so we’ll be keeping that. Naturally we ended up buying it, so I guess it was fate that he would be coming home with us today. The shelter folks told us to keep him in a room for the time being to adjust to his new surroundings and slowly let him acclimate to the rest of the house over time, so for the time being he’s hanging upstairs in the home office room. So far, I think he seems to be adjusting quite well – it being fairly quiet here and no other cat shenanigans to worry about.

Welcome home, Carson!