Monday, September 24, 2007

Cats, etc.

Well, there have been changes in the cat dynamics around here. Monica has now fully accepted Joey. She grooms him and lets him snuggle with her. He has tried to play with her, but she won't participate. She very rarely hisses at him and it's when he tries to play.

Phoebe is still a bit miffed with him. He keeps trying to make friends with her, approaching her and following her around. Sometimes she allows it and will sniff him and be in close proximity. Other times she will hiss and smack him or growl. She's acting kind of like Monica did in the first couple of days where you can't predict what her response will be at any given time. But I think she's softening.

In other news, the rental house is almost ready to be rented. The contracted work is done and Denis is just finishing up odds and ends. My mom and I have done some cleaning. We'll have to get all our fix-it stuff out of there. We also have to go to the property management office and sign our contract so that they can advertise it and get some people in there. It's looking really good, but it has definitely been a lot of work for my honey. It'll be nice to get it off our plates.

Right now I'm feeling really tired and air-headed because I took an antihistamine. Denis and I have allergies that go on year round. I usually take a Claritin in the morning which helps a bit. But my nose is often plugged up in the evening. Denis has a fancy-shmancy nasal spray that has really been helping his allergies since he started taking it. I'm thinking of seeing if I can get me some of that stuff. Since my cold two weeks ago, my nose has been a constant source of grief. anyway, I've been taking a stronger antihistamine hoping that my nose won't be so stuffy at night. Sorry, I'm rambling... Tracy signing off.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Joey update

Well, there is some news to report on the cat dynamics going on here. Joey is semi-feral still, so one of the things we have noticed is that he will tend to hide on us if we are not playing with him or actively petting him. Part of that is the cat tension in the house - he knows he's not welcomed. Last evening, we finally made in-roads on bonding with him. We spent the evening watching TV and Joey stayed with us. He tried to go under the couch once, but I stopped him. He cuddled right next to each of us. And today, when he sees me, he comes running (for protection?)

On the cat front, Monica softened up a bit more last night. She did a bit of sniffing, approaching him to do so. He approached her a couple of times and only was hissed at intermittently. The kicker was that at one point, Monica joined us on the couch - not at the opposite end from Joey, but right in front of him. then she laid down, back to him and "ignored" him. Today, he's tried to play with Monica a couple of times, but she'll have none of that.

Phoebe has been still at it with the growling, hissing and swatting, but at a closer proximity. I set him up on the windowsill by my desk(one of her favorite spots to watch birdies out the window). It is a nice long windowsill and I put him far away from her usual spot. But she came right over growling and hissing. He was mesmerized by the birds - there were a bunch of them today - and ignored her. Soon she got distracted by the birds. Watching them got the best of her and distracted from hissing at Joey. Every once in a while, she'd remember him, look his way and growl. then he made the mistake of trying to cross her path and got swatted.

I took Chariman Mao's (a cat...) advice and gave both Phoebe and Joey a treat. Phoebe really likes his kitten food, but we put it up out of her reach when his carrier door is open. I had just removed it because she came over to eat it. She got mad and hissed at Joey. So I got it back down and gave her one piece at a time, right near him. I gave him one which he ate. Phoebe got three pieces. The second one I put in front of Joey, she stole (touching him, mind you, fur to fur!) with no growl. A bit later, there was a semi-civil exchange that sounded more like a meow than a growl. She thoroughly explored the carrier where he's been sleeping.

anyway, I'm probably boring you to tears. But this is what I think about most of my waking hours right now. Joey is really thin. I can feel his little ribs, spine and his hip bones. He's been eating really well, so I'm sure he'll gain weight before too long.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Could this be Joey Tribiani?

So here's the story... Denis has a coworker who is into the whole cat rescue thing. She has so many cats that she won't tell us how many she has so we won't think she's crazy. Anyway, she heard about this kitten who was wild, out in the country with his cat family. A friend of her's captured a lot of them to have them spayed and neutered. So this little guy was going to be returned to his wild setting, except he decided that he didn't want to be wild anymore. Denis' coworker is looking for a home for him so that he won't wind up as "cougar bait". They are out of options as her usual contact don't have room for him. She told Denis about him and asked if we would take him.

I heard about this over the weekend while I was on my way to Portland. I said, "I don't want another cat!" I wasn't really keen on upsetting the happy little duo that we have in our household. Phoebe and Monica have been so great and easy because they have just always been together. There are no fights for dominance, they already have it worked out. (Monica is the boss, in case you're curious...) I have never done a kitten before. I don't know how they will react, how to go about introducing them, reinforce litter box training, etc, etc.

I got home from the weekend and much to my surprise, Denis was really interested in taking the kitten. So we brought him home for a "trial run" on Monday afternoon. He spent most of that evening in the carrier we set up for him. The first introduction didn't go over too well. Today, we have let him out about half of the day. And there seems to be some improvement in relations. Phoebe definitely does NOT like him - she hisses and growls at him and cuts a wide path around him. Monica seems curious, but her response to his advances varies. She has sniffed him, ignored him and hissed at him.

Any hints or experiences would be welcomed. He's really cute and at this point, I think Denis is pretty smitten. I'm pretty sure he's staying unless Phoebe continues to be this distraught by his presence. She seems to be mellowing a bit about it though.

We're calling him Joey - we liked that better than Chandler or Ross.

Friday, September 14, 2007

been home sick

I came down with a cold while T and her husband were here. Actually, T and I both were coming down with a cold at the same time. I took my vitamin C and zinc and laid low Monday and Tuesday. Wednesday I went to work and took Dayquil throughout the day to no avail. My nose just kept running and I kept sneezing. It was not fun and then I started to feel like I had a fever towards the end of the day. So I've been home from work and feeling slightly guilty the last two days.

In my job, there are a limited number of people who can cover for me when I'm sick. I knew that I had some important emails to answer and a complex patient scheduled. Turns out they couldn't find anyone to work for me, so my appointments were rescheduled and my boss took a call for me. I was able to check my email from home and answer the important ones. That made me feel less guilty. I started to feel much better last night and was contemplating going into work today, but once I went to bed, my nose stuffed right back up and I sneezed several times. So I stayed home again today.

This evening, I'm feeling almost back to normal. I've been planning to go to Portland this weekend to attend two open houses for missionary friends of mine who are back in the US right now. They are so fortuitously scheduled for the same weekend - one is Saturday and the other Sunday. So, I'm sticking with my plan and hope that I don't regress in my symptoms. My colds generally go from my head down to my chest, but so far the pattern is not being followed.

I'm staying at T's house and having dinner with AMG, so it's going to be a lot of fun. (BTW, the above picture has nothing to do with the contents of this post. It's just to show you the harvest on a recent day from my garden.)

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Men at Work

No, they didn't sing any songs from down under. While T and I were working on the organization front, our husbands were doing some jobs in the rental house. The main task accomplished was putting on a new screen door. It turned out to be more complicated than they initially thought and Denis was very glad for the help.


As you may have figured out (if you are a regular to my blog and those of my friends...) that T came down for a visit this past weekend. I had teased her that she was welcome to come and organize my house after doing such a good job on her own. Well, T took the challenge. She brought her hubby with her on a rare visit with no kids in tow. GMJ graciously had the kids for the time. Denis and I put them both to work. We shamelessly took advantage of their free labor. And I'm happy to report that a LOT got done and we all had a great time! Here are the "after" shots.
The office (AKA "the red room"), seen in a recent post in it's former state of chaos.

The "guest room" which up till now was in no state to receive guests. This was the room that did not appear in the house tour post last year. Sorry, there are no "before" pictures for this room.

Now we are all ready for YOU to come for a visit. We have a lovely room waiting for you. :o)

Sunday, September 02, 2007

What's in my purse?

Sorry, I don't have a picture to go with this post.

Outer pockets:

  • cell phone
  • pager
  • work name badge
Back zippered section:
  • checkbook
  • old receipts that are no longer pertinent to anything current
  • recent receipts awaiting entry into my computer Money program
  • credit and debit cards
  • various and sundry store discount cards
  • frequent flyer cards
  • professional membership cards
  • insurance cards.
Main compartment:
  • pen
  • a new bottle of Phoebe's medicine that I have forgotten to give her for two weeks now
  • spearmint mini Altoids
  • 4 lip glosses and a chapstick
  • small bottle that says "Advil" but contains Extra Strength Tylenol and Motrin IB
  • a one day only Kohl's coupon that is outdated (I did get to use it.)
  • my auto insurance card that is supposed to be in the glove box of my car.