Monthly Archives: July 2011

Sunday Snapshots: CFD Edition

Cheyenne Frontier Days is over. This makes me both happy and sad. Same goes, I imagine, for pretty much every resident of Cheyenne. Except for those that just hate it and leave town for ten days.

If you were to ask Oliver what his favorite part of CFD was, he would say Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The Boy has to work at the free pancake breakfast downtown so he was getting up at 4:30 a.m. Oliver is more than happy to eat breakfast that early. Obi wasn’t sure at first but he ate anyway in defense of his portions.

If you ask Oli was his least favorite part was, he would probably say it was getting in trouble on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday for trying to get me out of bed for breakfast at 4:30 a.m.

Obi’s favorite part of the week was the excellent programming on OutTV. Much like sweeps week, we had a wide variety of guest stars including drunk cussing guy, the WOO girls, horses, and the new bird feeder he got for his birthday.

Obi’s least favorite part was how much we were gone. His belly was seriously under rubbed. Between the personal errands and visitor schmoozing I had to do for work I don’t think I made it home for many lunches. Honestly, I don’t remember; it is a long week.

***

I was out in the garage today going through some boxes and I found this picture. This is Poco and I on her first night at our house.

Kids and kittens are so cute at that age...

Nothing to say about it really, just got a kick out of it.

OutTV: Lonesome Dove

This evening, while The Boy was cooking our dinner, Obi and I were watching OutTV. In the alley by our house there were about 30 sparrows. They were all taking a dust bath. I guess the Thunder Cafe is now part of a spa/resort.

As we watched, a dove strolled from where he was picking at seed underneath Thunder Cafe. He walked down the alley. Between the sparrows. Once in a while he would stop and look at one of them. Eventually he got through the group and turned to walk, alone, down the sidewalk.

Lonesome dove.

***

My head is kind of a whirlwind right now. The new roof on my old house was destroyed by the hail storm. I had the insurance company come out and they gave me a check which had to be mailed to a special branch of my bank in Ohio so they could sign it over to me. This was two days before my house was supposed to sell. But now it isn’t selling until next Friday so I had time to find a roofer. He starts tomorrow. The check from my first new roof hasn’t even been cashed yet.

Meanwhile, my car was also totaled. So this week I had to go find out if there’s a new car that I don’t hate. Found some options. And so I agreed to the settlement from my insurance – now would be a great time to point out that I was planning to switch to liability only in September so EXCELLENT timing!

And here’s where it gets complicated: I don’t want to buy a new car until my house is sold, to get my check for the car I have to mail them the keys, the people coming to get my car aren’t coming until after next Friday and the paperwork all has the mileage from four days ago and every day I drive I add another ten miles. At some point I’m going to either have two cars (if I use my roof check to buy a car and then my car check to buy a roof) or no car.

Any of these things is complicated enough, without doing them all at the same time. On top of this logistical trickiness, I am now feeling guilt. Irrational guilt about hurting the feelings of my house and my car by getting rid of them. It would make me so sad to have to drive past my beloved Saturn in a new car. It would hurt his feelings, I know it would!

***

And now that I’ve proven myself insane: it is Thunder Thursday! Today we bring you Tommy, the king of crabby. Tommy is my grandparents’ cat and these pictures were taken by my aunt while she was in town in June. And here’s the thing about Crabby Tommy – we, the people he is mean to, are the people who picked him out and gave him to my grandpa for Father’s Day. He was the sweetest kitten ever – he even kissed my uncle’s nose and purred.

Boy, did he have us fooled.

I guess as long as he’s nice to my grandparents, that is all that matters.

"Bags are for the birds. Unless they have birds on them."

"Be sure to get my good side."

"You didn't think you were leaving without me, did you?"

Happy Birthday, Kitten Thunder

Happy birthday to you,
You’re eight; and you’re two
Happy birthday, Kitten Thunder
Happy birthday toooooo yooooooou!

That’s right, Oli and Obi have the same birthday. And it’s tomorrow. I didn’t even plan it that way. In fact, I didn’t notice until I took Obi in for his one-year appointment back in April. But how convenient is that?

I’m not really the type to get all celebratory about my pets’ birthdays. Heck, we barely get celebratory when The Boy or I has a birthday. So Kitten Thunder might get a can of tuna in the middle of the day. That’s about it.

And, since I was in the store and have been planning to get one anyway…

"We'll call this new program on OutTV...Thunder Cafe."

The new bird feeder is a big hit. We’ve had sparrows and wrens galore at an already wonderful window. Two windows, actually, because you can see the feeder from the breakfast nook and the dining room. It also hangs low enough that doves can sit on the fence and eat from it.

It might be low enough for squirrels to sit on the fence and eat from it. Which may be why there is a LOT of birdseed on the ground.

"Thunder Cafe is a big success! In one day, the customers have almost cleaned out the inventory!"

Hopefully the birds take better care of their things than the squirrels do.

"The easiest route is a straight line - right through the lid of the box."

There is a new squirrel in the neighborhood and boy is he ever stupid. He chewed this giant hole in the box in one day. While sitting on it. The bright side is that when the peanut level is low he has to climb all the way into the box. So we get little squirrel legs kicking in the air as he goes in. Very cute. And we get squirrel face peeking out once he gets a nut. Very very cute.

But I still hope we don’t have any stupid sparrows.

OutTV: Frontier Nights

Kitten Thunder is enjoying special OutTV programming this week: Cheyenne Frontier Days. It’s ten days of rodeo, concerts, parades and other events. At the old house we were only part of the Air Force Thunderbirds, flattening my cats to the ground every time a plane zoomed overhead.

The new house, though, is only blocks from the park. So OutTV has featured cars in search of free parking, the drunken Kid Rock concert goer who couldn’t find his car afterward at though his friend on the phone should be more help, and lots of sirens going by for various reasons.

It is only day three so I offer you the most interesting fact of OutTV so far: Charlie Daniels Band? WAY louder than Jason Aldean AND Kid Rock. Go figure. Seriously, I can understand the words. So… FREE CONCERT!

Oh, how he suffers.

The Boy is gone on a trip right now. It has been 36 hours since Obi has had a proper belly rubbing. And, oh, how he suffers.

And thus, how we all suffer.

This morning Oliver and I were laying on the couch like we always do in the morning. About the time The Boy should have been making my coffee, Obi walked to the middle of the room and plopped down.

“ME!” He yelled.

You see, usually my coffee delivery is postponed because Obi convinces The Boy it is time for the belly rub. Obi runs out to the rug and gets into position, belly exposed, and The Boy comes in and works his magic. They pet and roll and brush and purr. Then I get my coffee.

This morning there was no Boy. There was also no coffee but you don’t see me throwing myself to the ground in a tizzy, now do you? Of course…how would you know if I had? But I DIDN’T.

I’ve done my best to fill in. The problem is that I am The Girl. And The Girl is good for playing and comforting. Those are my jobs. So when I rub the belly it turns into The Claw with biting and scratching and kicking (and kisses to assure me that we’re still playing).

We did manage to get one brush full of hair removed from his coat. We feel pretty good about that.

Tomorrow, though, The Boy will be coming home to three happy mammals. Obi will get his belly rubber back. I will no longer be in charge of the belly rubbing. And Oliver’s snuggles will not be interrupted again.

Zensai, as always, really couldn’t be convinced to care less.

***

It’s Thunder Thursday! On Tuesday, Cousin Puck’s girl sent me a picture of her poor, miserable fuzzy. Puck is a prime example of Feline Heat Index: Too Hot.

"Set the A/C on frosty, please."

The Feline Heat Index

“Hey.” I sit up in bed. Two kittens, serenading me from the shelf where our toothbrushes are plugged in, stop singing and look over at me. The jump down and run to the bed. Four front paws – two snowy white and two stripey brown – come up on the edge of the bed and two adorable kitten faces pop up behind them.

“Shut.” I say, pointing to Oliver.

“Up.” I say, pointing to Obi.

They look disappointed. I noticed that as I plopped back down to the pillow. But last night was the first night in a week that it had cooled down enough to sleep comfortably. See, in Cheyenne there’s only five days out of the year where you really need air conditioning. And this? This is day eight.

The humans are not pleased. And this morning, Kitten Thunder decided that they wanted to be fed early. Like before it was light out early. And they launched a dedicated, widely varied effort of Girl annoyance.

The kittens are suffering too. They do, after all, have heavy fur coats and it doesn’t much matter if they’re naked underneath.

How do I know they’re uncomfortable? I’m trained to read the Feline Heat Index:

Generally seen in Wyoming winter - October through April - the Cold FHI keeps the core compact for heat conservation.

As temperatures rise, the core of the cat expands both for optimum heat exchange - solar in, hair out.

When the FHI reaches hot, cats will stretch to full length to make it easier for heat to escape. This does not negate their need for a sunbeam.

At too hot FHI levels, your cat's spine will start to pop in the effort to stretch beyond capacity. Be nice and put some ice in the water dish. Ice cream would be lovely, thank you. And - hey! - has that ceiling fan always been there?

As I sat in the living room, dripping, The Boy came in a turned on the ceiling fan. Hey…we have a ceiling fan! Honestly, I’d forgotten. So had Oliver. Over and over and over. And over.

And over.

The first night we had it on he walked into the room and hit the deck. “What is that thing!?!” He jumped up on the couch with me and flinched as he looked up. “What is that thing!?!” He dozed off. Then woke with a start. “What is that thing!?!” He took a bath and stopped in a panic, mid-lick. “What is that thing!?!” He Thundered and was toppled by Obi when he stopped short at the rug. “What is that thing!?!”

Whatever that thing is, it feels great to lay under. Nice breeze. Favorite show on OutRadio. And The Girl is just about to – “What is that thing!?!”

How to Build a Fort, Part 2

There are numerous ways to build a fort and endless design possibilities.

This alternative fort features many benefits such as maximum floor monster space for protecting the fort.

Positioning near the couch and loveseat allow for easy protection against brothers with laser eyes.

Three sides with exits, plus the floor monster chute, make a quick getaway easy when The Girl gets out the camera.