Monday, March 30, 2009

Doodle and Critter

Doodle has been gone 2 weeks and a day. Critter has been missing 6 days. My last picture of the both of them. Critter gave Doodle great comfort the last few days of her life. I miss them both.

Contemplating "Pound Mentality" vs. "Shelter Mentality"

I have been wondering why they call the Animal Control Shelter a Pound. Why pound? The Online Etymology Dictionary says:
"enclosed place for animals," late O.E. pundfald "penfold, pound," related to pyndan "to dam up, enclose (water)," and thus from the same root as pond. Ultimate origin unknown; no certain cognates beyond Eng.
So the Pound is where we enclose animals. Appropriate, as our Animal Control Shelter does enclose them tightly. We have visited the pound; it's not a bad place. I remember visiting the pound in another county in my childhood that made me cry. It was dirty, smelly and cramped. The Gwinnett County Animal Shelter is clean, bright and the staffing was extremely supportive and friendly. However, they are not a "no-kill" shelter and the animals were quite confined. Their pens were full of hard surfaces and antiseptic.

The Humane society, on the other hand, had "free range rooms" where the kitties (and doggies in another house) were free to roam. There were nice fuzzy places where they could snuggle up, there were toys and multiple litter boxes with many different types of litter. There was an outside "porch" where they could go and get some fresh air and sunshine. They are definitely "no-kill" and will keep the kitties as long as necessary to find them homes.

I am glad that our pound is not as awful as I remember from my childhood, however the Humane Society has my full and complete support. I made another substantial donation to them this week. Chaos was so taken by their philosophy that she wants to go volunteer. Compared to the pound, it was kitty heaven.

I am glad that my God is a "Humane Society" type of God; offering us food and good comfortable shelter in God's arms and in a community here on earth before we go to our forever home.

Missing my kitties and snuggling Johnnycat and Sugarbaby today.

Monday Randomness

  • I've not felt much like blogging, facebooking or twittering for a while. I'm still quite blue about the death of Doodle and the disappearance of Critter. It seems a lot to process. It is like any other kind of grief: it just takes time.
  • I did find another cat and I am growing fond of her. She is a scaredy cat and needs me about as much as I need her. She has a short little muzzle and wide spaced eyes; she looks a lot like my Muffin. We are still uncertain about her name. Allegra, Claritin or Zyrtec seem good to me right now...
  • Because the pollen is taking over all of outside right now. I have a fine yellow-green film on my cars.
  • I am trying to accomplish at least one "project" a day and clear out one box/bag a day in efforts to finish cleaning house. I think it's a never-ending effort. By the time I finish one thing, something else has to be done or re-done.
  • But this weekend, I did seal the antique tray from my bathroom. It has started to rust on the bottom and was leaving stains on the counter top. It cleaned up and sealed up quite nicely.
  • I also purchased a second Pizza Stone. They sure come in handy.
  • The text for the week is for Palm Sunday: Mark 11:1-11
When they were approaching Jerusalem, at Bethphage and Bethany, near the Mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples 2and said to them, “Go into the village ahead of you, and immediately as you enter it, you will find tied there a colt that has never been ridden; untie it and bring it. 3If anyone says to you, ‘Why are you doing this?’ just say this, ‘The Lord needs it and will send it back here immediately.’” 4They went away and found a colt tied near a door, outside in the street. As they were untying it, 5some of the bystanders said to them, “What are you doing, untying the colt?” 6They told them what Jesus had said; and they allowed them to take it. 7Then they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks on it; and he sat on it. 8Many people spread their cloaks on the road, and others spread leafy branches that they had cut in the fields. 9Then those who went ahead and those who followed were shouting,
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!
10Blessed is the coming kingdom of our ancestor David!
Hosanna in the highest heaven!”
11Then he entered Jerusalem and went into the temple; and when he had looked around at everything, as it was already late, he went out to Bethany with the twelve.
  • I have people procuring palm branches for this Sunday. I suppose it's time to write a sermon and do the homeschool thing.
  • But first more strawberries and coffee.

Friday, March 27, 2009


We searched the shelters today, to no avail. But Sugarbaby came to live with us. She's about 3 months old and about 8 pounds. A big girl, but very timid. She's still lurking in the carrier in my bedroom. She seems to need me about as much as I need her. I understand she has never taken to anyone before; she snuggled under my chin and licked me. That was it; I was hooked.

If/when Critter comes home, I'll have two heart-kitties.

Critter is Missing for 60 Hours

And I've given up hope. We will visit the shelters this afternoon. We had been planning to adopt another cat to "replace" Doodle. I don't know if we should right now or not. I've found a gorgeous little Maine Coon at the Humane Society. And I have another friend who is bringing "No Name Kitty" to visit on Saturday. And I have another friend whose cat just had kittens.

But I'm blue today -- the rainy weather reflects my mood. I suppose I could write on my sermon and bulletins. We will watch some Sister Wendy and do some schoolwork. I could hang my new curtains in the Utility room. I have things I can do -- sublimate my "blue" into "busy-ness."

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Oh Noes!! I need to Twitter about this video!!

Crittercat has been missing for 36 hours.

She slipped out of the house about 8:30 Tuesday night. By the time I got home at 11:00, she was no where to be found. I miss her outrageously. Johnnycat misses her -- the kids and LH miss her. She was a real sweetie. I'm convinced that she wandered into someone else's home and they just kept her. We put up fliers yesterday to no avail. Tomorrow we will visit the pound.

In other news, Chaos was very ill last night; almost ER sick. It seems she had (edited b/c Chaos said it was TMI.) So today is a stay at home, drink hot tea, burn candles, watch lectures on DVD and take it easy kind of day.

I have a feeling that when we visit the pound tomorrow, we will not come home empty handed whatever the outcome.

Edited: Oh, yeah. I forgot that I had a concussion yesterday. I suppose concussions do that. The spring on my car trunk is broken and it bonked me on the head really hard. So Chaos wasn't the only one who needed an ER visit yesterday.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Critter is Missing

She's been gone since 8:30 or so last night.
I miss her. We are making up flyers for the neighborhood.
I've never known her to miss using the INSIDE litterbox or a meal.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Contemplating "Enough"

Matthew 25:31-46

31 ‘When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. 32All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, 33and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left. 34Then the king will say to those at his right hand, “Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; 35for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.” 37Then the righteous will answer him, “Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? 38And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? 39And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?” 40And the king will answer them, “Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family,* you did it to me.” 41Then he will say to those at his left hand, “You that are accursed, depart from me into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels; 42for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.” 44Then they also will answer, “Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?” 45Then he will answer them, “Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.” 46And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.’

My refrigerator is getting old. It's 22 years old and showing plenty of wear. The grill on the bottom has broken off long ago and now we have cracked the inside wall of the refrigerator door and there is insulation showing. We've tried to glue it back with superglue to no avail. It is getting time to replace it.

When I bought it, I really wanted a larger refrigerator. This one is 17 cubic feet; I wanted 22 cubic feet, but we couldn't really afford the larger one. I am now contemplating purchasing the one I "really want" -- huge, french doors, sliding freezer drawers and a enormous $2,200 price tag. I get stuck on that price. It seems really enormous to me. That money represents a full month of work for myself (plus a little). And to be honest, that refrigerator would be more than enough. The frig that is $1200 would be more than sufficient and give me that little bit of extra room and the French doors for big trays.

Why do we always want more than enough? And what exactly is "enough"? There is a book the LH and I have read a while back -- I don't' remember the title exactly or the author -- I believe it is "Your Money or Your Life" by Joe Dominguez -- that states that enough is when all your basic needs are met. One dollar more than that becomes "wealth."

Well then, what are "basic needs"? According to another book I read recently (I believe it was "Red Letters: Living a Faith That Bleeds" by Tom Davis) there are 5 basic needs:
What then is enough for a frig? I think I need a new refrigerator because I can't imagine having the insulation showing is a good thing; but how much is going to be enough? It does fall into the "having food" category, but how MUCH refrigerator is necessary? Or am I thinking about this too hard?

Likewise, I am working on the house. We are also looking at purchasing a "permanent" place -- a residence to retire to eventually and to use as a base of operations as we itinerant. Many of the places we are looking at have one of these on it:

Is this sufficient? Is this enough? My impulse is to junk the trailer and build fresh, but there are so many who would be grateful for this. What is enough?

Monday, March 23, 2009

Oddity of the Day -- Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch

Replica Monty Python hand grenade causes bomb scare in London. Found here.
And the Lord spake, saying, "First shalt thou take out the Holy Pin. Then shalt thou count to three, no more, no less. Three shall be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the counting shall be three. Four shalt thou not count, neither count thou two, excepting that thou then proceed to three. Five is right out. Once the number three, being the third number, be reached, then lobbest thou thy Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch towards thy foe, who, being naughty in my sight, shall snuff it."

Monday Randomness

  • I've hit a dry spell in blogging. Don't know why. Maybe it's too much Twitter and Facebooking. I'm on a Twitter fast today. Maybe I'll extend it to Facebook, as well.
  • Sunday's sermon went well. It was completely and utterly different than what I thought I was going to do. I had prepared a few jokes for "Holy Hilarity" but it just didn't feel right.
  • Homeschooling has hit a roadblock -- or just a speedbump. I can't get the girls writing. I thought it would be Math or Science that would give me the speedbump, but no, it's English. They don't want to read or write. I may be forced to do a packaged, graded curriculum. Or I may need to find a motivator. I'm just stuck. You can lead a horse to water BUT....
  • I have finally finished spring cleaning in one room (or done it about 90 percent.) The Dining Room is next. If we can just keep the rooms clean as we finish them, we will be doing well.
  • Chaos and I want to strip the wallpaper off the bathroom next to the laundry room. It's getting pretty sad looking. This won't cost any money and then we can sand and paint it with the same paint that is in the living room and kitchen. Free home improvement project -- yeah!
  • Our refrigerator is getting pretty sad. It's 22 years old. I have a new one picked out and of course it is very very expensive. The current refrigerator was a "let's just get this one now and get a good one later." I don't want to do that again. If I have to live with this one for 20 plus years, I want one that will be optimal, not just "good enough."
  • In fact, we've been in this house maybe 15 years (14?). There are a plethora of home improvement projects we need to get around to. We have hail damage to our roof (I think). The railings on the porch need to be painted before they rot. The bushes are going to take over the house -- they need more hacking. We have a lot of peeling wallpaper and the flooring all over the house needs... something. I want new countertops -- these have so many scratches and boo-boos, I think they collect germs. When is a home improvement project necessary and when is it just a "want"? Something to think about.
  • So, it's time for me to look at the text of the week -- John 12 -- a grain of wheat falling to earth. More coffee is necessary....

Sunday, March 15, 2009

More Momocon Pictures

You can see Link's sword, boots, shield, pouches, hat, belts, gloves and gauntlet. Most of these items were either altered or made by the girls and I. I even made the belts. I didn't make the ears, though. More research will be necessary.

Adorable Link and Dark Link. This young lady even made her chain-mail. That's next on our list. Adorable Link's chain mail was two silvery tank tops from Goodwill originally.

Allen Walker, a random Mario and Adorable Link. Allen Walker's trenchcoat was originally a leather shirt and leather skirt. Chaos and I altered it dramatically and added some vinyl. We will improve it over the year by experimenting with adhesives. Vinyl glue was not optimal.

We also experimented with theatrical makeup this year. This was Ben Nye makeup; it held up well. The spray fixative is wonderful.

They both loved the doctor. Next year I think that the LH needs to do a Tom Baker Doctor. Just thinking.... The pouches were very handy. Chaos had two on the back of her belt for her glasses and wallet (and screwdriver, electrical tape and camera). Entropy had two pouches for her wallet and water bottle...

MomoCon Pictures

The girls at Ga Tech. Chaos is cosplaying Allen Walker from "D. Grayman" and Entropy is Link from "Legend of Zelda" fame (specifically, Link from "Twilight Princess").

In fact, there were lots of Links.

Lots and lots of Links. Each from a different video game. My Link was agreed to be "most adorable." I agree.

Allen Walker was thirsty.

Fun was had by all.


Old lady kitty has passed away at age 20. I just found her in the living room. She had a long and full life -- I'm going to miss her terribly. Poor kitty.

She was the last of the kitties my husband and I had as young married people. She was the daughter of Katie who was the daughter of Roll who was the daughter of Spike Marie. A long and distinguished line of faithful kitties. She began life as "Abraham" because I was convinced that all ginger tabby were male and she was the color of a freshly minted copper penny. She was the third born of that litter; Spike was first, then Mouse who got wedged in the birth canal. I had to help Katie deliver Mouse -- he was slightly oxygen deprived and had malformed hips and tail. Doodle was the last born; she was a very small kitten and I wondered if she was going to live.

Her name began as Abraham; she became Abagail after we realized she was indeed female (only 10 percent of ginger tabbies are female). She was very mischievous. After we watched "Driving Miss Daisy" and we heard Miss Daisy's son say to her "Mama, you're a doodle," her name became Doodle.

She was a tiny cat -- she got to be about 6 pounds at her peak. And she was quite persnickety -- we used to claim that her persnickety was concentrated in her small little body. She remained quite kitten like the majority of her life.

When the girls were born, she and my youngest would "fight" quite a bit; Peter, Muffin and Mouse just avoided the babies, but Doodle was intrigued by them and would play like they were kittens, too.

The vet loved my Doodle and during her final years, we saw a lot of the vet. Her kidneys started to fail about 5 years ago. At one point, she was on sub-q fluids daily. I hated having to do that to her, but she had to have them. She was on special food that she had trouble eating; her teeth were just so bad. Eventually, last year she had oral surgery to remove the broken teeth. At this point I started making "slurry" out of her canned food, adding water so that she could slurp it up.

Near Christmas, I had to start washing her off with a washcloth as grooming just became too difficult. I would hold her in my lap and with a warm damp cloth, I would clean her face and her paws. She didn't like that much; but the soft strokes down the length of her body would make her purr.

One of the first things I did for her was wipe off the birth material off her little body; the last thing I did for her was to hold her and groom her with a damp washcloth and listen to her purr.

She will be buried in the backyard next to Mouse, her littermate. She was proceeded in death by all the other cats of my early marriage; Peter, Muffin, Bagel, Katie, Spike and Mouse. They will be remember today as well and missed.

Sunday Morning

Off to drive, preach, drive, preach, drive, maybe lunch, drive and home. All in the rain and all by myself. Kids and husband are going to Momocon again today.... At the rate they are moving, I'll be home before they leave!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Saturday Random Bullets

  • I cannot believe it's been a full week since my last posting. Too dang busy, I guess.
  • I've been homeschooling, making Momocon costumes, teaching Bible Study, going to the funeral home and housework. (Should I add "running around like a chicken with my head cut off?")
  • And writing my sermon. The text is from John 2:13-22
    The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. In the temple he found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables. Making a whip of cords, he drove all of them out of the temple, both the sheep and the cattle. He also poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned He told those who were selling the doves, "Take these things out of here! Stop making my Father's house a marketplace!" His disciples remembered that it was written, "Zeal for your house will consume me." The Jews then said to him, "What sign can you show us for doing this?" Jesus answered them, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up." The Jews then said, "This temple has been under construction for forty-six years, and will you raise it up in three days?" But he was speaking of the temple of his body. After he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this; and they believed the scripture and the word that Jesus had spoken.
  • I believe I will preach it as "Obstacles to Worship" -- but that may change as the day goes on.
  • So much water passed under the proverbal bridge that I couldn't remember the text from last week -- much less my sermon, until about a half-hour after I was asked. It's bad when *I* don't remember the sermon ... (it was about Taking Up Your Cross -- see? I did remember.)
  • Kitten ate a "ball" of thread earlier this week. Panic ensued -- but all things pass eventually.
  • Old Woman cat keeps getting out. Panic ensues, but I've found her each time. She's getting extremely feeble at this point. It's only a matter of time.
  • My fingertips are sore from all the pinning and duct tape and adhesives of various sorts. In fact, a couple of them are actually bleeding. But I must say, the kids look fabulous. Pictures will be forthcoming later, as the camera went to Momocon before I got a chance to download it.
  • I haven't even had a chance to get to Karate this week. My physical shape is turning more "round" than normal.
  • There is a funeral this afternoon -- and then home to bulletin making and sermon printing out, so this is the end of all bullets for today....

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Link Love for the Loving Husband

If you are into electronics, ham radio or computer programming, my Loving Husband is now blogging. So here's a little Link Love, dearest! =o)

Saturday Random Bullets

  • I'm doing the same thing I always do on a Saturday -- more sermon prep, bulletins and preparing for tomorrow.
  • Next week, though, I hope to be in Huntsville to hear Bishop Willimon talk about the Wesley Study Bible.
  • I've let my "online activities" slip some, as we are settling down into home schooling. My Twitter is not tweeting much, Facebook activity is usually HS related, little blogging and zero Second Life. I'm enjoying the home schooling very much. I still am working on getting the kids motivated -- I read an interesting article on just "seeding" or "scattering" things on the table to get them started in the morning. They are just so used to having someone tell them what to do that they have a hard time.
  • I have found some neat stuff for the girls this summer:
  • I don't think we can afford more than one other than music camp, but I am amazed at what is out there.
  • In addition, we are watching a few series from The Teaching Company. I love the quality of these DVDs. I've received the catalog for a while, but never ordered anything. I am loving the series about the Louvre, "How to Be a Superstar Student," the high school World History series and the Biology series. Fabulous content for the price.
  • On the other hand, I purchased a program from another company -- Phoenix Learning Group -- and was not so very impressed. Yes, the concepts of latitude and longitude haven't changed since 1968, but for $19.95, I would have hoped for something more than a 30 minute film from 1968.
  • I've put my name on the list at Tomato Sphere. It's a blind study about tomato seeds that have been variously treated -- some have been aboard the shuttle. The seeds also come with other experiements -- looks really interesting.
  • Silly little flash games: Touch the Bubble, Bubble Shooter, Boomshine. Addictive!
I'm still searching for curriculum -- I'm still looking on how to educate my kids so that they will be prepared for the world and for college. The waters of homeschooling are so very different from public school. The variety is amazing -- but also confusing. I have found some very opinionated people -- unschooling, deschooling, school at home, homeschooling -- very loaded words with some people. And then there is a divide between those who are doing it for religious reasons and almost everyone else. I understand and sympathize with those who are pulling their kids out of a toxic environoment and keeping them steeped in Judaeo-Christian culture and morailty. I fear, though, that the most common homeschooler's version of Christianity and mine do not match often. I am actually becoming quite gun-shy about curriculum and websites that have a huge Bible verse at the top of the page. Yes, I believe that the Bible is formative, informative and transformative. However, the prominance of scripture displayed in this manner does not form, inform or transform -- it becomes a label or an agenda -- a way to separate "us" from "them."

We are in the world but not of the world. We are to be an example of right living so that the world itself can be changed -- so that the world itself can be transformed. How can I do that if my children and I do not participate in the world? How can I prepare my children for this world if they are isolated? I do not let them bring things into the house that are harmful -- there are certain movie and video-games that I abhor. They understand and know my concerns; and for the most part, they abide by it. But they also see how I live in the world; a world which is toxic in places.

We have made some new friends in the homeschool world who are more "crunchy granola" -- who are Lutheran, Methodist and Episcopalian. Most have had experiences with the uber-Christian groups and have also become gun-shy. I am grateful for them -- I have an urge to start a new group for all of those who are Christian but get left out of the "Christian" groups, but know that I just don't have room in the schedule for that.

Off to write on that sermon...

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

A Lenten Morning Prayer -- Psalm 51 and Prayer of Humble Access

Open my lips, O Lord,
and my mouth shall proclaim your praise.

Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and renew a right spirit within me.
Cast me not away from your presence
and take not your holy Spirit from me.
Give me the joy of your saving help again
and sustain me with your bountiful Spirit.

Most merciful God,
We confess that we have sinned against you

in thought, word, and deed,
by what we have done,
and by what we have failed to do.
We have not loved you with our whole heart.
We have not loved our neighbors as ourselves.
We are truly sorry, and we humbly repent.
For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ,
have mercy on us and forgive us;
that we may delight in your will,
and walk in your ways,
to the glory of your Name.

Lord God, almighty and everlasting Father, you have brought us in safety to this new day. Preserve us with your mighty power, so that we won’t fall into sin or be overcome by adversity. And in all we do, direct us so that we will do your will, so that when we end this day, we will rejoice in your providence and grace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. AMEN.

Happy Square Root Day

(hat tip to Divers and Sundry)

From Yahoo!

Dust off the slide rules and recharge the calculators. Square Root Day is upon us.

The math-buffs' holiday, which only occurs nine times each century, falls on Tuesday — 3/3/09 (for the mathematically challenged, three is the square root of nine).

"These days are like calendar comets, you wait and wait and wait for them, then they brighten up your day — and poof — they're gone," said Ron Gordon, a Redwood City teacher who started a contest meant to get people excited about the event.

The winner gets, of course, $339 for having the biggest Square Root Day event.

Gordon's daughter even set up a Facebook page — one of a half-dozen or so dedicated to the holiday — and hundreds of people had signed up with plans to celebrate in some way. Celebrations are as varied: Some cut root vegetables into squares, others make food in the shape of a square root symbol.

The last such day was five years ago, Feb. 2, 2004, which coincided with Groundhog Day. The next is seven years away, on April 4, 2016.

The days are:
I guess you could argue 10/10/00 might fit as well, depending.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Twittering Tweets.

Morning Prayer -- Psalm 119

Blessed are those that are undefiled in the way
and walk in the law of the Lord.
Blessed are they that keep his testimonies
and seek him with their whole heart.
For they who do no wickedness
walk in his ways.
Thou hast charged
that we shall diligently keep thy commandments.
O that my ways were made so direct
that I might keep thy statutes!
So shall I not be confounded
while I have respect unto all thy commandments.
I will thank thee with an unfeigned heart
when I shall have learned the judgments of thy righteousness.
--Psalm 119

God you are the creator and preserver of all that there is, that there was and that there is to be. Today I ask for your preservations and care you for all sorts and conditions of people; that you would show yourself to them, and declare and who your saving health and grace to all nations. More especially I pray for your holy Church universal; that it may be so guided and governed by your good Spirit, that all who profess and call themselves Christians may be led into the way of truth, and hold the faith in unity of spirit, in the bond of peace, and in righteousness of life.

Help me to be your servant, guiding those who I meet to desire true discipleship. Lord, discipleship is costly and it is not easy. He us all perserve in the faith. Finally, I commend to your fatherly goodness all those who are in any ways afflicted or distressed, in mind, body, or estate; that it may please you to comfort and relieve them according to their several necessities, giving them patience under their sufferings, and a happy issue out of all their afflictions. In your Son's name, Amen.