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Saturday, May 31, 2014

NINJA SQUIRREL

I have a friend who hates squirrels. Today, I have joined that group of squirrel haters.

It was a new experience to fight a ninja squirrel this morning, but I won - and it cost me a little money I had not planned on.

This is what was left of the ninja squirrel when I got done with him/her; yes, he/she lived and ran like crazy.


Around 10:30am I let my dog outside to pee. She got from the back door to the tree when I heard painful screeching noises. I was still on the back porch and looked to see if she had caught a squirrel by the neck. But, as she turned around twice, I saw nothing in her mouth. It was the dog who was doing the screeching in pain.

I ran out to her to find a ninja squirrel firmly attached to her with front claws on her left side behind her collar, just hanging on, tail dragging the ground. I grabbed her collar and led her to the back door.

As my adrenalin was pumping, trying to figure out how to save her from this creature, I let the collar go and used both hands to firmly grab the end of the squirrel's tail. (I know, don't let the squirrel get loose and attack me too!) The only item nearby was a brick and I was not going to take a chance on hitting the squirrel and injuring my dog in the process.

I yanked to the left and to the right. Of course, the squirrel did not yet want to let loose of the dog's side, so my dog was jerked a little left and right as well. One more firm yank to the right and (out of sheer anger) I gave one more stronger yank to the left and felt it release its claws and I slung that ninja as far as I could throw it across the yard.

The dog and I quickly got inside the door of the porch as the squirrel scampered off somewhere. I went into the kitchen to wash my hands when I noticed a little blood on her fur. I called the vet immediately and within minutes we were on the way to his office. My dog was noticeably agitated from her ordeal.

We found where the blood was coming from - the area where the left front claw had embedded itself in her back, behind the collar. She had a small gash over her left eye as well.

Doc gave her an antibiotic shot and told me to clean up the blood on her fur with some peroxide, which I did after we got home.

Doc said that it was mating season for squirrels and they can get aggressive. Then I thought back to yesterday (or the day before) when I let my dog out and a squirrel ran up into the tree, just to sit there flapping its tail back and forth making those squirrely clicking noises (as if to say, ha-ha, you can't get me). I think my dog pissed off the squirrel.

However, today the squirrel was already in the tree when she went out and neither of us saw ninja until it attacked.

Other than a couple short walks and some tender loving care, she has been resting most of the day. I now have a broom at the back door to chase away any yard squirrels before I let her in the back yard. (What we won't do to protect our family-member pets!)

All's well that ends well, but I'm going to purchase a couple of those squirrel repellent stakes I've seen in catalogs for my back yard as soon as possible. I will do whatever I can to keep those rodents out of my yard!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

BEAUTY IN THE NEW EYE


Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

The beauty of my first lily bloom of this year is surely in the new eye of this beholder. It is brighter in color and clearer than it was last year.

It is great to see the beauty of my flowers in a new light!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

HAVING A BLOOMIN' TIME

As my garden begins to grow, I am watching my geraniums get taller and my snapdragon has pink blossoms. The best things are my lilies have yellow buds and my red rose bush has a bud on it.

This week I have to plant my sunflower seeds. I like to sit outside on my front porch and just enjoy the warmer weather, watch the birds, and watch my flowers grow and blossom.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Saturday, May 24, 2014

ZOMBIE EYE (amended)

I was told Wednesday that I had a black zombie eye. That's a new one for me.

On Tuesday, I went to Kettering Hospital and had major eye surgery. I had a metal protective cup over my eye when I woke up in the recovery room. I got home and spent the next 12 hours in bed resting. The nurses at Kettering were GREAT! I had three and they were very attentive and wonderful to me. Kudos to them.

My girlfriend came and spent four days with me to help me out. I was not allowed to read, bend, or lift.

On Wednesday, I had my mandatory checkup with the eye surgeon and when the patch was removed, I had a somewhat black eye in the center and red all around the center. There was a white cloud through which I could see objects. I have three different eye drops to use four times a day for a week. Then it will become two drops four times a day for a while.

As time went on, the cloud began to clear up and by Friday, the cloud was gone. Things are still a little blurry, but my vision is much better. I don't need to wear my glasses any longer. I will probably need readers for a while.

I had a cornea transplant and while the cornea specialist eye doctor had my eye ball open, he also removed my cataract and implanted a new lens.

Today is the first day I have been allowed to get on the computer. I had so many emails to review. Things are slowly getting back to normal and will continue to improve. I go back for another eye checkup next week.

I said a short prayer for the eye donor the first night, because my donor corneal tissue came from the eye donor bank available in the State of Ohio. I am grateful for that service.

I have to wear sunglasses at all times, unless I am sitting quietly, and wear my patch overnight for a while. But the end results will be worth it. As of today, the black is gone, the color is back in my iris, and the blood red color is clearing up and I can see some white returning to my eye.

I called the doctor Friday and got permission to go to church Sunday, so I felt I had a victory there. Otherwise, I am staying home trying to behave myself.

Thanks to all my friends who called or texted to check on me, and my special gratitude to my friend Michele who stayed to take care of me for a few days. She is so special!

I'll be back to writing more as soon as I can.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

POOR TREE

Trees are good for the environment. I was sad when I had to cut down a 45 year old evergreen tree in my front yard, but it was dead. A former (never to be used again) plumber killed it with some powder he put down my sewer line.

Today a new lilac bush will be planted in my yard in memory of the old pine tree.

I was saddened Monday when I saw a perfectly good tree chopped down and mulched from a yard two doors down from me. I heard from a friend that it is good to say a prayer for the soul of the tree. It was a living thing that was a sanctuary for birds and gave shade. It will be missed.



Tuesday, May 20, 2014

MY THANKS - BUT NO THANKS

I want to thank Fayette Carpet here in town for giving me a 15 x 15 (approx) scrap of flooring vinyl which I needed today.

The carpet on the back porch was torn up a bit under where the hot tub tank leaked water. I decided a small piece of vinyl would be better underneath before the hot tub is hooked up again this afternoon.

It is now in place and all is well. The weather is beautiful and I am trying to get all my last minute things done around the house today. Now or never!

I also realized that the tiny clamp I mentioned yesterday should have been shown WITH the penny, so here it is again. Such a tiny item causing so much trouble. But I didn't let it get me down.

A positive attitude and blocking out all the drama that tried to come at me today was finally successful. I read, I watch, I listen, and keep quiet while all the drama goes on, but sometimes I have to speak up and say enough is enough.

The way I look at it is this: a person can be friends with whomever they choose, read whatever they choose, listen to whatever they want, be a member of whatever organization or group they want, and a healthy discussion is fine, but don't project your drama onto me, because I don't want it.

Drama free zone here and ready for what tomorrow brings, and my hot tub working again in a few hours. Moving on and staying calm!!!

Monday, May 19, 2014

TINY TROUBLE

It is amazing that a little tiny thing like a hose clamp no bigger than a penny could cause so much trouble.


I wanted to get my hot tub filled and ready for the summer. It gets emptied and cleaned out in the fall to prepare for the winter months. While my handyman was mowing the lawn, he turned on the water and I used the garden hose to start filling the hot tub. As this was going on, he came onto the back porch and asked, "What is all this water all over the floor?" I hadn't noticed any water on the floor because I was on the other side of the tub. The motor unit would not turn on and we realized it was leaking - big-time.

We grabbed the bucket and began to bail the water out of the tub right away. When he disconnected the tank from the tub, we needed to figure out where the leak was coming from. Since by then it was getting dark outside, we left the project for the next day.

I sent an email to the dealer about the leak (only one dealer in Ohio of my brand) and received a reply the next day. He told me what to look for and why.


The next opportunity we had a couple days later, we took the cover off the tank and opened it up to reveal the motor and hoses. Sure enough, as the dealer had predicted, a hose had come off the water valve because the hose clamp didn't hold during the winter. We did have a bad winter here, and it did get cold on that back porch.

The hose was replaced on the connection and a new hose clamp was put on and everything else checked out okay. Again, it was dark outside when we finished putting the tank back together, so tomorrow all we have to do is hook the tank back up to the tub and refill with water.

I was trying to get the tub ready for Tuesday/Wednesday when I will have company for a few days. I thought my girlfriend would enjoy some relaxing time, but that tiny clamp caused a week's worth of trouble. We must take obstacles one step at a time, one day at a time to overcome them. I have had my share, but so far I'm keeping up and overcoming.

The back porch is cleaned up and ready for the summer. I need a few days off, so I will take this week and recover from a surgical procedure after a week of house cleaning and repair work in preparation for this week. I hope to be back at the end of the week.

Until then, may all your troubles be little tiny ones too!

Monday, May 12, 2014

HE IS SPECIAL

Duke is a very special little boy. He is still with his mama and has nine siblings. But Duke stands out in a crowd, because he's different.

Five of Duke's siblings are black, four are mainly white with some black areas, and they all blend well together. But Duke was given a special gift, he's yellow and stands out among his darker family. Duke's mother and father are black. He's a little bundle of joy and phenomenon of nature.

Duke was born on April 11th and will be eight weeks old on June 6th, which will be a big day for me. Duke is coming to live with me. His room has been prepared awaiting the new arrival and greatly anticipated addition to the family.

With any new baby, patience is important and schooling will commence as early as possible. It will surely be a busy summer at my house.

I'm sure Duke will quickly learn that he is the 'man of the house' with three female companions, but his 'wings' will get clipped as soon as medically safe. Since Duke will never smoke or drink, the little man will get his temperament calmed early in life by the 'surgical' method. That way, all four household members will be equal, calm and loving.

Here are Duke's siblings:


And here is the little man himself, cute and cuddly as one of the most popular breeds in the country – a yellow labrador retriever. Welcome to the family little guy – a loving home and a big back yard in which to run and play.


A short little guy compared to the the grass that was cut three days ago.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Saturday, May 10, 2014

SHE MADE MY DAY

I went to Aldi's today to get bottled water, because I do not drink our city water unless absolutely necessary. I put my quarter in the cart and proceeded to the front of the store near the cashier area where they store the pallets of water.

I encountered an obstacle in my way which made my task much more difficult. The store was advertising patio furniture and had the display set up right in front of the water. There was no way to get my cart to the water on the right side. The table, chairs and umbrella opened for show was blocking the aisle.

There was a four foot high-five foot long box (unpacked furniture items) on the left and I attempted to get my cart around the box so I was between the furniture and the water. However, I could not reach the water from that side. Therefore, I put my cart against the umbrella base and walked around the furniture, between the stacks of chairs, which brought me in front of the water display and in front of my cart.

I reached down for a case of the ten-ounce bottles and as I reached to put it in the cart my foot ran into the umbrella base (in sandals of course!). Ouch. I reached down to get a case of the regular 16-ounce bottles and when I stood back up I hit my head on the metal crossbeam of the umbrella. By that time I was ready to shove that umbrella you-know-where.

It was then a little struggle to get my cart backed up out of the small space, around the big box again, but with tugs and pulls I finally accomplished it and headed to the cashier.

She greeted me with, “How are you?” I said, “Not too peachy right now,” and proceeded to tell her of the dilemma created by the store display. She apologized and said she wanted to move that umbrella, because it surely was blocking access to the water.

After I paid for my couple items she wished me a happy Mother's Day and I thanked her and went to my truck to unload the water from the cart. I then returned the cart to the rack, got my quarter back and was heading to my truck when the cashier appeared beside me and said, “Ma'am, I'd like to make your day a little better,” as she handed me a small bouquet of Mother's Day flowers and reached out to hug me. I graciously accepted, hugged her back and gave her my profound thanks.

SHE MADE MY DAY and I've been smiling ever since. There is some good in this town!

Friday, May 9, 2014

NO-NO'S

I read an article tonight about what foods should NEVER be kept in the refrigerator. It caught my attention, because the first item on the list was the TOMATO. It stated that tomatoes lose all their flavor if put into the refrigerator and they stop their ripening process in the cold temperature.

Basil was the second item on the list, because it will wilt faster; best kept in a cup of water on the counter until use.

Potatoes should be kept in a paper bag in a dry place, not in the refrigerator. The cold temperature turn the potato's starch into sugar rapidly and it becomes gritty (includes sweet potatoes).

Don't put onions in the refrigerator, because the moisture turns them soft and moldy. Keep them in a dry place, but do not store with potatoes as they will both deteriorate faster.

An unripened avocado should not be stored in the refrigerator, but an already ripened one that will not be quickly used can be stored there.

Garlic will sprout, get rubbery and moldy if stored in the refrigerator.

Don't store bread in the refrigerator, because it will dry out too quickly. Bread that will not be used in four days can be wrapped securely to retain its moisture and kept in the freezer. Let the bread thaw slowly when ready to use.

Olive oil stored in the refrigerator will condense and turn to a hard, buttery-like consistency.

Coffee in a refrigerator will lose flavor and take on odors of other foods; large sealed quantities can be put in the freezer.

Honey kept in a refrigerator will crystalize; it will keep forever in a cupboard if kept tightly sealed.

And finally, the article mentioned butter: salted butter can be kept out of the refrigerator for about two hours without harm. But unsalted, light, or whipped butter have a greater risk of contamination, so should be kept at cold temperatures at all times and only be out from 10 to 15 minutes at a time.

Since I don't use coffee, olive oil, avocados, garlic, or basil, I don't have any worry. I don't like refrigerated bread, so I have never done that. I have never stored honey, potatoes or onions in the refrigerator, but I will stop putting my tomatoes in the cold temperatures from now on.

Monday, May 5, 2014

SING, SING, SING

The Big Band sound is said to be some of the best music around from the old days.

Sunday afternoon the community concert association presented Barry Campbell And His Big Band, the last of this season's concerts in town.

The band members are all from the Cincinnati/Dayton/Columbus area and most have played in a big band (similar to Jimmy Dorsey's) in the past. Pam Noah was the vocalist and has been with them for many years. The program stated that the band has been together about 35 years.

My favorite of the ninety minutes of swing tunes was the finale song, Sing, Sing, Sing.



Friday, May 2, 2014

CANCELLED OR RENEWED?

I was reading the Yahoo News today and the television article about the new season was posted. I was interested to see if my favorite shows would be on again next year.

1. I don't watch anything on CBS so their list didn't matter to me.

2. On ABC, I was glad to see that the popular shows Bachelor/Bachelorette, Castle, Dancing With The Stars, Resurrection, and Shark Tank were all renewed. Resurrection's first season was good and I was hoping to see it again.

3. I don't watch anything on FOX, so they don't matter.

4. I don't watch anything on the CW, so they don't matter either.

5. On NBC, which I watch more than any other channel, I am happy to say my favorites were all saved to air again in the fall: The Biggest Loser, Celebrity Apprentice, Chicago Fire, Chicago PD, Law & Order SUV, Parenthood, The Voice, and Hollywood Game Night.

When these shows are not on, I am usually watching HLN's Forensic Files, Hallmark Movie Channel's Murder She Wrote-Diagnosis Murder-Perry Mason, TNT's Dallas (which I DVR) or Castle reruns, USA for Law & Order reruns, Comedy Channel when Jeff Dunham's concerts are on, and History2 which has a variety of historically educational shows. Occasionally, I will watch one or two other channels for older comedy reruns.

Therefore, the majority of shows I watch are on about 10 different channels, but the cable company splits them up into different packages so I have to have the $80 per month variety package in order to get my 10 channels. They have quite a gimmick going. I am looking forward to the day when a la carte choices are available. It would save the customer money, but lower the big corporate profits and then the CEO's wouldn't make their millions and millions of dollars gouging the “little guy.”

I am not a movie person, so I don't care about HBO or other pay channels. Being retired gives me the luxury of watching TV whenever I want. And it is good background sound when I do things like write blogs!