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It's my birthday!

Yay! It's my birthday! The weather will be just beautiful - clear skies, high 60sF to low 70sF. Wonderful.

Very little time because I slept later today.

Spiralize All the Things!!

A couple of weeks ago, on a lark, I ordered a Spiralizer. Actually, I've been wanting one for a while now and I finally decided to order it.

Tried it out today. I spiralized three Russet potatoes into one pie dish and one large sweet potato into another pie dish.

I'm really liking the shape.

I took the sweet potato noodles and shook over them some cinnamon mix from Pampered Chef plus some brown sugar. I massaged the noodles with that mixture and then dotted butter over the top. Covered the dish and put it into the oven. Came out fantastic. I want to try this with apple ribbons. And put roasted sweet potato noodles with caramelized onions on a pizza. Baked sweet potato curly fries. And so forth.

I am able to digest this very, very well. Thrilled.

Here is a picture of the single raw sweet potato, cut into noodles. I think if you're trying to stretch vegetables, this is an amazing way to do it:

Spiralizer Raw Sweet Potato


Okay deep breath. At work now. Good.

I am damn determined to be kind to this technician tomorrow. I will do that and keep my trap shut.

Besides, there is phenomenal news today. So many of my friends in Florida can get married today. That's far more important.


Psyched. I tackled the first chapters of my chosen Statistics text and my Cognitive Psychology text. One chapter a day, I figure, will be good. I don't expect to be going back to work until the 12th or after, so I expect that I'll have the bulk of the work done by then. (15 chapters each.)

Sunday afternoon coffee

The sun is finally back out today and I am most grateful for it.

I didn't sleep much last night. It was a dark night. Not sure why. But I woke up around 4am thinking feeling as if the darkness had broken.

Today I was determined to get a wreath to hang on the deck. Dad brought me one last year. So, I went out and got a kissing ball, plus a wreath for the front door. Kissing balls remind me of Mom: she had kissing balls of yellow daisies for her bridesmaids and white for her at their wedding.

I also brought up the new Christmas decorations that I'd picked up last month. And I went down and brought out the Christmas tree and brought that upstairs. I took the container of Halloween decorations downstairs and tucked them away.

I can't seem to get pictures to upload at the moment so I will edit later.

I also decided that it was time to set up the desk. So, I'm now sitting at the computer back in the old office/laundry room location. It's cold back here but not as bad as I expected, and I do not have any heat going except for what's blowing down the hallway from the living room.

And now India's discovered that I'm back here so I'd better post so I can give her attention.


The universe has been making noises for some time that a cat was coming my way. Henry came. I figured that was it. This morning, a new critter entered my life. I haven't had any new critters since 2006 and now the universe has opened back up.

I leave at the same time as a fellow in the old Bartlett house. About 6:10am. This morning, he was passing just as I got to the bottom of my driveway. He took the first left up Minnetonka. I usually always go straight to Cherokee (the third left) without thinking. This morning I considered taking Minnetonka and considered taking Sequonia (the second left), but said forget it, I prefer Cherokee because it isn't freaking vertical. I rarely give it much thought but this morning it was a deliberate decision.

I turned onto Cherokee, which is a street about two houses long. I quickly saw a cat walking slowly up the street. It didn't run even as my car approached. I beeped gently. The cat stopped and turned its head vaguely in the directly of my headlights and then kept walking. Highly unusual because typically the neighborhood cats run. I rarely see stray cats.

I inched forward behind the cat. I started noticed that it was walking unsteadily. Oh boy, I said. I put the car in park, pulled the emergency brake and got out. The cat was walking slowly enough that I was able to catch up to it. I called out and it stopped. I very gently approached (her) and she voluntarily rubbed her head on my hand. I was able to stroke her back. Very thin, skin and bones, rough coat, soaked. Then I lifted her up and put her onto the grass. She immediately got back into the road and came back over to me.

I petted her some more. Then my heart melted. I picked her up and brought her to the car and put her in the back seat. She was unhappy about that and tried to get out immediately. So, I picked up her again and brought her to a different patch of grass and stepped away. She got off the grass and came back to me. Very unsteady on her feet. I picked her up again and put her into the car more firmly. I shut the door and drove home.

I set up her on the ground floor. Brought a litter box and food/water for her downstairs. While she was eating, I took one of mom's new jersey dresses that I won't ever wear and laid it on the floor for her to sleep on. Then I went off to work.

I called Dad and warned him about the creature downstairs. I made a vet appointment for Saturday morning.

Dad later reported that she had followed him into the back of the basement and when he started making noise, she promptly left the back of the basement and went and settled down on the dress I'd laid out for her.

Stopped at the grocery store on the way home to get supplies. When I got home, I was happy to see that she was still alive. I underestimated how weak she was and put stuff too far apart. She used the litter box but also had accidents. I saw that with Wooby who was too weak to make it to the litter box. I threw out the soiled dress and laid out a new dress for her to sleep on. I set out the new and lower-to-the-floor litter box and she got in it and laid down. I set out food and she got out of the box and ate. While she was eating, I washed the floor and then arranged everything close together so that she wouldn't have to walk more than a foot in any direction.

She is drinking water. She's keeping food down. She ate both soft food and crunchies. She actively used both litter boxes. I also checked under her tail, she has no problems with me touching her (unlike Henry) and I think she's a girl.

I left her alone for about an hour and when I came back downstairs she was fast asleep. Crashed on the new dress, head face down into the cloth. I arranged a blanket around her, too. It won't be all that warm, but she'll be a lot more comfortable there than outdoors. And she'll be dry.

She's keeping her food down, which is a good sign. She appears to have some kind of hip dysplasia, but it could be weak muscle tone. She weighs no more than five or six pounds but judging by her frame she should weigh closer to twelve. She looks to be quite senior given the appearance of the claws in her back paws and the white around her muzzle. She also purrs quite loudly and is fairly vocal.

I managed to get a picture when I came home this afternoon:

2014 October 24 bedraggled
About 2.5 hours ago Dad texted to say he was coming over. I was at the grocery store at the time, so I came home and have been getting the house as ready as I can for Dad. It will have to do.

I've just heard from the rescue society in Long Island. They have found someone to bring Franklin-the-cat across tomorrow. Alrighty then! This time is later - they would take the 2pm ferry and get to Clinton about 4pm. That means I need to cancel my oil change.

It also means I can't make it to Niantic tomorrow to get to the bookstore. (That'd be too much driving in one day.) The two spots - the bookstore in Niantic and the Dunkin Donuts in Clinton, are only 18 miles apart on I-95, but the off-highway trip is 40 miles because the Connecticut River must be crossed in New London and there's only one bridge and that's 95. Forget it. Google says that the entire day would be 102 miles.

I will think about it, though. It would be an adventure. The main issue is that my right knee is killing me. Plus it's swollen. It's odd. I woke up Friday. My leg feels as if it wants to go into a charley-horse, so it's not just the knee. I took two Advil about 4:30pm but it's still not pleasant.

Typically if the knee is sore, walking around cures it pretty quickly. That's not the case today. Maybe I'm low on potassium. Anyway, that's why I don't want to drive a hundred miles tomorrow.

And, Dad's here.

Kafka on the Shore

Hah! I emailed the Niantic Book Barn a few weeks ago to ask if they ever got any Haruki Murakami books in stock and they were very kind but you could hear the hysterical laughter that accompanied their response. They explained that any Murakami books that came in left just as swiftly as they arrived. Well, this afternoon I got a rather-miraculous email that they just got one in stock today (Kafka on the Shore). Thrilled. If Franklin-the-cat does not journey up from NYC tomorrow, then I will head to Niantic instead.

Sunday morning coffee and bookage

52F outside. Oof. Dad's coming over at some point today. I'll open the windows when it gets to, umm, 60F. Yeah. Thankfully, the house is in decent shape or I'd be freaking out about him coming over. It's almost that time of the year when I need to start drawing the curtains at night to keep the cold out. Brr.


Been reading "We Are Not Ourselves," a new novel by a fellow named Matthew Thomas. It really is an outstanding novel, but I'm 53% in and I need to stop. One of the central characters has Alzheimer's, has clearly been sick for a while and (in the novel) has just been diagnosed. The gut punch of the initial doctor's visits hollowed out my chest last night. I have to put it aside. The story is too close to my own - Irish family, legacy of alcoholism and its resulting familial behaviors, the long slow radiating torture of dementia. Yeah, too soon. Too soon.

That said, the book is a luscious treat of a story and I'm someone who tends to prefer genre fiction instead of novels such as this. This book has had me fully ensnared since I began reading it on Thursday. (LOL I feel as if I need to say here that the book is 600+ pages, so I've spent hours with it so far.) I'll come back to it. I requested the author to be a friend on Goodreads and he accepted.


I need to take my shower and get cooking. Need to cook for my own lunches this week and I want to send Dad home with some bites to eat. I can't send much or he won't eat it. First, finish the coffee.

Didn't go anywhere this weekend other than the grocery store. No new experiences, other than watching episodes of The Blacklist and reading this book.


Friday afternoon I stumbled across this beautiful Terry Pratchett reading guide. Spent a while looking up a few books and figured out that I have read 12-15 of the books pictured. Soul Music and Small Gods are still my favorites, but I did really enjoy Going Postal and Making Money. I've read all of the Death books. I haven't read a single Rincewind novel. The Watch novels are blending in my head so the best I can figure is that I've read 3-6 of them. And I've read four of the nine books in the Witches line.


I was thinking yesterday that I'm good with expanding into a new life that I haven't lived yet, as opposed to trying to get back to a life I've already lived.