Rat art, and kitties

Well, so far 2015 has been disappointing. Kitty disasters and freeeeeezing weather (it’s currently 8 degrees, wind chill -7). Bleah. Do better, 2015.

But when I took the trash out yesterday morning, I saw what can only be called Rat Art – the patterns of their tails and paws in the snow.


There were also larger prints, from the local alley/throwaway cats, which broke my heart. Cats aren’t supposed to be out in this weather, they don’t burrow in like rats do. Dammit humans, don’t be assholes.

Meanwhile, Tippi and Manny are tolerating each other. And great news; a friend in Potomac has spoken for Manny! It’d be a perfect fit, as she’s amazing (with animals, and in general), and though she already has two, she used to have a third, a ginger named Rosie, and so a new ginger kitty would be just and right.

Manny, in his spot. His eye looks better.
Tippi, deciding to own the crate.

Tippi’s first snow, or the end of the world as we know it.

Today has been fortold since the ages began. Or, ever since last week.

About two inches of snow, and then freezing rain and icy stuff ’til it all melts away once it all turns to rain. Plans for hanging out with friends are put on hold, and things shift to crockpot chili & pumpkin cake. I had to take a quick tour of the neighborhood, complete with a little caramel apple cider.


Tippi, being about ten months old, has absolutely no idea what’s going on. And it’s scaring her more than zombies hungry for kitten flesh trampling a field of catnip. In her mind it’s the beginning of the end.

All’s well now, after I showed her a plate full of snow (well, at first she freaked and ran into her favorite box, but then it melted and she toughened up). Now she’s happily curled in my lap.

Big tough kitty.


Backyard stairs – all finished!


Just a quick update to show my new stairs! Very, very Sesame Street. Love that.

I’m thinking little potted herbs or flowers along the “stage left” side. Perhaps something that will cascade down the side for one of the upper stairs?

I know, it’s dead center of the slider. I’d rather have had it more to the right, but I guess I understand the aesthetics.

Yaaaaay stairs!

Deck: goin’ dooooown.

It’s been one of those weeks. A slew of things came along that drove me crazy. Or rather to….

This week, you complete me.

Why? Because my deck is driving me batty. Fortunately, I have good friends that care, and one in particular that came, saw and sawed. As in sawed apart my deck, and helped with the rotted wood behind it. Huzzah!

Because I have Photo Grid and I’m nothing if not excited by new toys, here’s a nutshell of the work he put in. (I think I passed him a level at some point.)

Holy bleep that's a lot of work.

But today? A contractor that’s working on Red next door (and doing a darn fine job) told me he had stairs and cinderblock, and would I like to have him put up stairs? “How’s $400?”

Um, yes please?

Now, of course I wouldn’t be me without freaking out about something, so looking a gift horse in the mouth was bound to happen.

* I worry about the sewer; the opening thingy will be covered by the stairs. Even though he’s leaving a space for plumber types to access it from under the stairs? I still worry.

* I worry about the glass block window, as it’ll be covered completely by the concrete stairs. But it’s a small price, right?

I worry that it’s a good thing, and I’m not particularly used to good things. I’m gonna have to get over that though.

Right now? It looks really nice, and extremely solid. In fact, it’s kinda got a Sesame Street vibe. Me likey.


I’ll update once the final piece is up. The other guy is off getting wood filler to cover the rim joist. And, yes, I worry that’s not good enough, like I know what’s better. But what else? Iron? Kryptonite? My friend put up temporary flashing, but that was a stopgap, not a solution (though he did a damn good job of it.)

Seriously, I’ve got to learn how to breathe.

Oh. This can’t be good.

I did a bunch of yard work today. Pulled out a few of the cucumber plants that have called it a day (one more is still trying to send out blossoms, bless it’s heart.) Picked a peck of peppers. Planted a new mum. Went inside and celebrated my workness by popping the peppers into the fridge.

Then, as I popped out onto the deck for a final look-see…



But no crackle, and certainly no rice crispies. Instead, I felt like I had been lowered about an inch or two. Because I had. The deck pulled itself away from my house. Oh yeah. This is great.

Yep. Boom goes the dynamite.

I hopped off the deck to see what was going on underneath….

Creeeeeak. Or that's what I heard in my head.

Aaaaaaand checked out the view from a level spot.

Awesomesauce. Not.


I really want to just rip the whole bugger down and get a quote on iron stairs. Hot as a bugger? Most probably. Expensive as [RADIO EDIT]? Ditto. But it wouldn’t go anywhere.

Or maybe brick. Though I’d hate to lose the window, and it’s bit of light in the swamp room.

Just when you think it’s going on an even keel….

Bright side? Peppers!

I'm saying this is a peck. Sure.

Hike-ies: Patapsco

I like to hike. Mostly because I like to walk and hate to jog. It’s a thing.

So when a friend asked me if I wanted to do a little hiking? I was all over it.

Problem? I. Am. So. Totally. Out. Of. Shape. And here I’ve been thinking that spin class and a house full of stairs was doing it for me.


I did get some pretty pictures though. In between desperately gasping for air like a beached carp. Enjoy! Ima start planning more weightlifting for my gym workouts. It’s necessary.