Tag Archives: animals

Life Lately

It’s spring, guys! I’m so grateful for the longer days, blooming plants, and all the cute dresses hitting the stores. This one came home with me last weekend, and this little number will join it as soon as it goes on sale. (Ann Taylor and LOFT have so many online sales that I refuse to pay full-price for anything there.) Anyway, enough about dresses: here’s some springy stuff we’ve been up to lately:

We’ve finally started Operation: Deck Beautification, thanks to these deck rail planters from Lowe’s. They’re only $12 each, and having a bit of color out there makes SUCH a difference:

Deck Flowers

On Friday night, we celebrated the arrival of spring at Scott River Ranch’s May Day Festival:


Sadly, I did not drink enough beer to show off my sweet maypole dance moves.

They served a fantastic dinner of their grass-fed beef, a just-picked-from-the-ground salad, and warm potato salad. This ranch is so cool – their cattle live in green, wide-open pastures, they don’t brand or rope their animals, and they make the slaughter experience as decent as possible (read more here, if you want.) I may have had a few beers and then decided to purchase a $40 tri tip.

Note to city dwellers: this is REAL farm-to-table dining.

Enjoying a tasty steak dinner in a barn overlooking a pasture full of cattle. #sorrynotsorry

On Saturday, we headed over to a cool little brewery called the Drunken Goat for a tasting event. This might be my favorite local event ever: You pay $12 for a pint glass, and then they give you all the beer you want. So it wasn’t so much as a “tasting” as it was a mid-day bacchanal that left me with the world’s worst hangover. But still, it was worth it because $12 ALL YOU CAN DRINK BEER.

Drunken Goat

I very much resembled that goat by night’s end.

After the beer tasting, we went to our friends Rob and Jenn’s house to watch the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight. Rob didn’t make us his famous grilled cheeses, but I’m going to forgive him because it was his birthday. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, ROB! Now make me a grilled cheese.

I leave this afternoon for a work trip in Reno, and then the day after I get back I’m heading down to Redding to watch my brother compete in his first bodybuilding competition. My main goal from that event (besides cheering for my bro, obviously) is to get a picture of my grandma posing with some mostly-naked juiceheads. WISH ME LUCK.


I Might Be a Crazy Cat Lady

If you follow me on Instagram, then you know we have been trying to find a harness that fits Whiskers, our portly cat, for quite some time. I posted this picture last night, and my sister commented that it looks like we’re a heartbeat away from pushing him around in a stroller. This is when I realized that all my followers probably think I’m a mega creep.

Whiskers Harness

So I just wanted to clear things up: We don’t roam around with our cat on a leash, and I have never put clothes on him (although I’d probably force him to wear this if I thought I could get it on him without losing half my blood supply in the process).

No, the harness business all started because of Whiskers’ assholery every time we hang out on our back deck. If we’re out there, he paces up and down along the sliding glass door, making loud, obnoxious meowing noises that I can only assume are nasty words in cat-language. If you have to go inside to grab something, you have to execute a three-step maneuver that involves slipping your body between a three-inch crack in the door while simultaneously kicking your leading foot out blindly to dissuade him from darting outside, and then slamming the door shut as fast as you can behind you. After a few beers, this task turns into a Mission Impossible scenario, and we start questioning if it might be easier to just crawl in through the air ducts and rappel down into the living room.


You know you wanted a visual.

Dave’s solution to this problem was to create a little cat run along the side of the fence. That way he can be outside with us, but he can’t jump the fence. (Our property butts up to a big field full of all kinds of animals who would love to eat our cat for dinner.) ¬†Only finding a harness to fit his considerable girth has proved to be quite the fool’s errand. We could tell that none of the cat harnesses at Walmart would be big enough, so we figured we’d be safe with small dog size. When that was too small, we moved up to medium dog. Which looked like this:

Fat cat in a little co-ooat

Chris Farley, the cat.

Essentially, our cat is the size of a Rottweiler. Anyway, we finally found one that seems to be working. He hung out with us for about a half hour last night after dinner, eating grass and sniffing rocks and talking to birds. Apparently all that excitement tuckered him out, since he spent the rest of the evening passed out on our laps. My friend Corinna posted this on my Facebook, and I realized that I probably am a little bit of a crazy cat lady because I would totally buy it:

Cat beltSo yeah, maybe I actually *am* a little bit of a crazy cat lady. But at least this hasn’t happened yet:


Bambi Got Lucky

So, I almost hit a deer yesterday morning on my way to work. FUN RURAL LIVING FACT: it’s usually better to hit the stupid deer than to swerve, so I closed my eyes (much smart! very safety!), braked as much as I could without locking up, and managed to stop mere inches from its derpy little deer face looking at me like, “What is even happening right now?”

It was not unlike this.

It was not unlike this.

As I careened toward the little guy, the only thought going through my head was, “NOOOO NOT MY PRETTY NEW CAR!” I’m sure there are a number of more appropriate thoughts I could have been having. Like maybe, “Please don’t let it come through the windshield and break my face,” or, “I really don’t want to kill a cute furry animal today.”

Whatever, I’m shallow.

I’m pretty lucky that I’ve lived in the country for seven years now and haven’t hit any large animals, although plenty of squirrels, birds, skunks, raccoons, and even a rogue hedgehog have all made the fatal mistake of running in front of my tires. One time, I was doing about 80 mph on the freeway when a bird hit my roof rack, ricocheted off at lightning speed, and cracked the windshield of the car behind me. Apparently I am a monster, because instead of feeling bad for the little dude I was like, “Hey! Real-life Angry Birds!”

In other news, I’ve managed to wrap all of my gifts except for one, which is slowly making its way over from Poland. If it doesn’t get here before the 24th as promised, I’m going to have to look up some nasty Polish words to leave on a certain Etsy shop’s comment section.

Also, if you receive a gift from me that looks like it was wrapped by Edward Scissorhands, this is why:

Are you done wrapping your gifts yet?


December Photo Challenge Day 17: Lock Screen

If you haven’t noticed, I’m basically just doing this December photo challenge when it’s convenient for me and I can’t think of anything else to write about. Today’s photo is of my lock screen (note to my grandma: It’s a thing on smartphones):

Lock Screen

Dave kind of lucked out here – a few days ago, this screen was a picture of him drinking a Miller High Life while wearing a blonde 80s butt rock wig.

I was kind of afraid to put up the tree this year – due to major space constraints, we’ve only had a little 2-foot tree in the past and Dave assured me that Whiskers would make it his mission to destroy a big tree. Turns out, he really enjoys hanging out under there. He did get pretty pissed when I started putting out gifts, but I cleared him a spot in the front and he got over it. Occasionally we’ll catch him trying to eat a sequin off the tree skirt, but after the gray paint incident we kind of stopped giving a shit about any antics that won’t result in major property damage. Pick your battles with cats, is what I’m saying.


Vacation Photos: San Diego Zoo

We spent the last day of our vacation at the San Diego Zoo. I’m pretty sure Dave will never want to go to a zoo with me again because I will not shut up about my new dream of smuggling a red panda into our back yard where it can befriend the cat and snuggle with me on the couch while I watch Toddlers & Tiaras.

Red Panda

This is the photo I plan to show the authorities when they arrest me for harboring an endangered species. “But officer, he was literally REACHING OUT TO ME SO I WOULD TAKE HIM HOME!”

Later in the day, we waited 20 minutes for a family of six to take approximately 3,000 photos in front of a goddamn hippo. These people were like the live version of one of those “practical” math problems on the SAT where you have to figure out all the different combinations you can create out of six items. Mom and dad in front of the hippo! Mom, dad, and grandma in front of the hippo! Just the kids in front of the hippo! Kids, grandma, hippo!


He’s smiling because I just elbowed Ansel Adams and family out of his grill.

We faced a similar challenge over at the tiger habitat, only when I went to elbow people out of the way, I tripped and hit my head on a low-hanging part of the ceiling. I guess karma is a thing after all.


Either he’s coughing up a hairball, or somebody just showed him a picture of Snooki.

There were flamingos everywhere, which was fun.


Still kinda pissed about that Tracy Byrd song.

We also saw this awesome bear, which was a little scary since there was NO BARRIER between him and us. There was a deep gorge-type thing, but that’s it. Which led to this conversation between me and Dave:

“This doesn’t seem safe. What if he teaches himself to jump?”

“Bears can run and climb, but not jump.”

“How do we know he’s not doing bear push ups at night and gaining the strength to leap the gorge and attack everybody?”

“You know people can hear you, right?”


I don’t care what Dave says, this bear totally just finished his WOD.

We also spent some time in the incarnation of my nightmares reptile house.


Not impressed with my Parseltongue.

There was a HUGE line to see this next exhibit:

Me and Dave

Much like the apes, we flung our feces at kids in strollers.

I simultaneously really like this next picture, and feel like a Sarah McLauchlan song should be playing softly in the background while a deep-voiced announcer asks me to donate to PETA.


In the aaaaarms of the angels fly awaaaaay from heeeere!

We really enjoyed our time at the zoo, even though I think it was unusually crowded since we were there on Father’s Day. We can’t wait to visit again!

I should note that Dave took all of these photos. I was too busy plotting Operation Steal a Red Panda to take pictures.


Pinterest Challenge: Animal Magnetism

Today I’m participating in the Pinterest Challenge, which is being co-hosted by my fabulous and stylish friend Emily at Sparkle Meets Pop.

I was traveling for work all last week and am now up to my ears in follow-up from my trip, so I didn’t have the time or energy to tackle anything too intense this time around. I settled on these simple DIY animal magnets from A Rose on the Moon:


First, I found some plastic jungle animals at Wal Mart and picked several of my favorites to dismember:

05.08.13 Plastic Animals

Animal Lovin

(I swear, those two were stuck like that when I emptied the bag.)

The animals used in the tutorial I followed were hollow and mine were not, so I wasn’t able to cut them with scissors or a craft knife like she did. Thankfully, Dave was only too happy to step in and offer his services:

05.08.13 Saw


Whiskers offered his services, too:

Whiskers Helping

The next step was painting the animals. I had just bought some acrylic paint in springy colors for a different project, so instead of buying gold paint in order to go with the color scheme from the original pin, I decided my animals would be springy.


The darker animals needed two coats, but the lighter ones were good with just one.

After the animals dried, I super glued magnetic buttons to their backs and they were ready to take their place on the fridge:

05.08.13 Elephant

It may not be the most impressive of DIY projects to showcase, but I like the touch of whimsy these little guys add to the kitchen.

Magnet row

Two Animals

Now I just need to figure out what to do with these:


You can follow me on Pinterest here.


Camera ready

I have been shopping around for a DSLR for some time now, mostly so that the pictures of food in my recipe posts will no longer look like piles of inedible slop. I finally picked one up last night – I went for the Nikon D3100 – and took advantage of the warm spring evening to head outside and play around with it a bit:

04.23.13 Cactus

04.23.13 Whisky

04.23.13 Dandelion

04.23.13 Smoke