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Welcome to the BOMB.

The Blog Of the "Mother" of Bandit.
Bandit is my Hairless Chinese Crested--he's the "normal" one. I, on the other hand, am unrepentantly "pet-crazy." You know the type--the spinster who lives in the haunted house three blocks over with 72 cats...okay, so I don't have 72 cats, and my house isn't haunted--but my dogs wardrobe is better than mine! Need I say more? :~)
I've never been consistant at journaling, so the timing of my blogs will be sporadic at best. I just hope they are as entertaining to you as they are to me; however, be forewarned: Most of my blogs will be about The BaldOne. In spite of his Don King "do," I think he's just as cute as any of the Brothers B!
Now, if I can just remember not to get him wet--or feed him after midnight...

About Me

My photo
My bags are packed and I'm always ready to seek out an adventure with Bandit and Moggy in tow. Bandit is my thirteen year old Chinese Crested, who I frequently call The Bald One or The BaldOne Boy (like he was one of the Baldwin Brothers). Moggy’s full name is Pip-Moggy. He’s my two year old gansta-resuce kitty. I couldn’t decide between Pip (which are the spots on die and domino tiles) and Moggy (or Moggie when I mistakenly thought he was a she), so I combined the two. Moggy refers to the British term for "cat of unknown parentage .” So in essence, I have an almost bald dog, and I’ve named my cat “Spot.”

Fun Stuff (I'm doing now or have done)

  • Artistic Attempts weekly (alternating between Painting With A Twist, That Art Place, and Peniot's Palette).
  • Bunko with the Belton Bunko Babes monthly.
  • Participating in the A to Z Blogging Challenge.
  • Spades and Liverpool Rummy with the Spadetts weekly.
  • The Mighty Texas Dog Walk, Austin (fund raiser for Service Dogs, Inc--they train shelter dogs to be Service Dogs, then give them free of charge to people with disabilities.)

Monday, May 25, 2015

Capture the Hand

Moggy believes anything dangling is fair game to be captured by his paws.  He's learning claws are not permitted in the vicinity of skin--neither mine, nor Bandits.

Bandit has learned I will turn a blind eye when Moggy attacks him unprovoked.

I've learned to keep hands on top, and inside, the recliner arms.  Evidently, on top of the recliner arms is no longer a safe place for my hands to rest.

Tonight, I was minding my own business when, from out of nowhere, a tiny white paw reached up and tapped my hand. Since no claws were involved I tapped back. We began a cat-n-mouse game over the side-front part of the recliner arm that was quite entertaining--entertaining to me because I was winning. Entertaining to Moggy, because from time to time I would allow him to capture my hand. Moggy just wasn't fast enough to do it on his own.

Until he changed tactics.

All of a sudden not one but two paws and a head came up over the front end on the recliner arm and successfully captured my hand!  He looked as surprised as I was. Then he smiled and bit my hand. Not a hard bite. More of a conquering victor playful nip. However, if no claws are allowed, you can be sure no teeth will be allowed either.  Not to be out done, I rescued my hand and we continued to play with me being victorious. As it should be.

The Kitten realized he would have to change his attack yet again since he was once again coming up short--all was quiet as he repositioned to launch his next attack. I readied myself.

A white torpedo appeared from behind the recliner. Even though his strategy was good, I was slightly faster and his trajectory was slightly off.

My hand remains free.

For now...

Friday, May 22, 2015

Even I'm Not Sure How I Got From HazMat to Hotties and Chargers.

I'm thinking I may need to call the HazMat Team for a house visit. 

I came home and found Someone had thrown up on the floor. And Someone tried covering it up with one of my red heart shaped pillows.  I'm inclined to believe that Someone might be the very same Someone who drug that very same pillow into the litter box a week or two ago. 

Poor Moggy. He was extra hungry this morning so I gave him two 3oz cans of kitten food. I may have overdone it. He's eating his diner (one can) okay now. We'll see if he tolerates it tonight. 

Bandit is looking kind of smug, self-righteous, and extremely innocent right now. I'm wondering what I haven't noticed with his paw print on it yet. 

I, on the other paw, have been a very good girl. I have!  I just finished mowing the jungle I call my side yard. Gone are the knee-high Wildflowers. Now you can see closely cropped weeds and rocky soil. This weekend may be a home improvement kind of day. I wonder if some handyman hottie will pick me up at Lowes and remodel everything  for me for free, and catch it all on film for some cable TV show. It could be called:   Hottie For Hire. 

Oh, wait--I forgot, I'm a liberated, DIY, '70s girl who said I didn't have to wait for a white knight on a  charger to  sweep me off my feet and take care of me. 

Hmmm.  My muscles may let me know what they think of that long ago commitment in the morning. 

Until then I'm thinking an ice cold DDP is in order. 

And, I wouldn't mind having a new charger--they are looking kind of retro-cool this year. 

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Pizza, Paws, and PJs: My Wild Single Friday Night Life.

I was in my PJs (actually a nightie, but it didn't fit the alliteration), and in bed on a Friday night before 9pm. Wahoo!  I've become my Mama. Except I won't awaken at o'dark-thirty to start my day like she will. In fact I had planed on channeling my teenage self and sleeping 'til noon on Saturday.  But I since I fell asleep by 9:15 pm writing this post, I woke up around 00:45 and took Bandit outside to do his business.  After I finish editing, my plan to return to sleep-land, and completing the task of sleeping until noon. On with the p alliteration...

I stopped and had my oil changed at the Ford dealership after work today. Jerome, my Service Consultant, always goes the extra mile to please me. He's awesome. As I was waiting and trying to decide what awesome activity I was going to do tonight, I remembered I really needed to get some bread.  I guess it would be an exciting night at the grocery store. Once I hit the doors at HEB I saw the pizza-by-the slice and realized I hadn't had pizza in a while. I thought if I was still hungry on the way out, I'd pick up a slice. However, first things first: it was grazing time at the free sample tables.
Pickin's were kinda slim tonight. I had a slice of the room temperature San Antonio Roll at the Sushi bar, a piece of toasted ciabatta bread with rather bland oil and dipping spices beside the cooking island, (where you can usually pick up samples of 4-5 items--but the microphoned chefs were on break).  A girl handing out samples of the tenderest pork ever in the meat section rounded out my grazing. Although tender, it again was a tad bit on the bland side with the seasonings.  I know my cold or the new arthritis meds are not effecting my taste buds because the left-over Thai (crispy fried chicken, water chestnuts, and peppers in a brown Thai gravy over sticky rice--the 1414 Signature dish) I took to work for lunch today was yummy--and spicy. After the HEB free-sample grazing my appetite was sufficiently whetted for some spicy pizza. I picked up a slice and a small kale salad from the deli to go with it. The kale salad and the room temperature sushi were the best tasting things I ate for dinner.  I have never had pizza I didn't like. Until now. In fact, this pizza was so bland and just downright icky, I didn't even finish the slice. I have enjoyed styrofoam-tasting rice cakes more.

As for the paws:  Moggy really does have a foot fetish. He terrorizes Bandit by hiding from him and pouncing as Bandit passes--or tapping Bandits paws at random times--like when he's trying to rest or sleep. And Moggy's taken to tapping, pouncing on, sniffing and licking my toes--especially when I'm reading or sleeping with my feet uncovered--basically every night. In fact, he just snuggled up to my left foot, as I'm editing this.   I thought he just liked my vanilla body wash or coconut lotion--until I woke up this morning--and burst out laughing. It seems someone in our house has a wicked sense of humor because I found an empty crushed kitten food can on my left great toe! Before you get freaked out, know this: the can was cleaned out by a certain dog in the house that grabs the can as soon as I get the kitten food out of it, and licks the inside clean, before I take it from him and toss it in the trash can on our way outside so he can do his business. I had assumed same said dog was the one knocking over the trash to get at the thrown away empty cans. But now I'm beginning to wonder if the actual culprit is the rescue kitty with the foot fetish...

I think I should apologize  to Bandit.

Monday, May 11, 2015

A to Z Blogging Challenge 2015: Reflections

April is gone and the A to Z Blogging Challenge 2015 is over...or is it? (I envision a Dr. Sheldon Cooper Spock-like raised eyebrow above un-Spock-like twinkly eyes, and a sly, all-knowing smile. Yeah, I'm a nerd. Actually, I haven't made it up the Outcast Chain to Nerddom yet.  I'm still a Dweeb. But that's a different blog post.)

It would seem there is one final blog post associated with the A to Z Blogging Challenge 2015: a Reflections post. Due anytime during the week after the challenge concluded. I missed the May 8th deadline so I'm posting late.

I stumbled into the challenge the day before it started thinking, Oh this will be fun--I'll have a reason to blog daily (my goal this year is to resurrect my non-existent personal blog and get in the habit of blogging 2-3 times a week).

For the most part I wrote and posted daily during the challenge--I almost always write something daily, it's the posting thing I don't always do. My iPhone is full of unfinished notes (100+) and email drafts (500+) many of which started out as blog post ideas, but never matured to fruition. But, for the most part during the challenge, I wrote AND posted something daily. I say "for the most part," because two posts were late. Considering I posted more times in one month than I have in several years total, I consider myself a Challenge Winner, so I get to wear the Winner T-shirt.

But more than getting to wear the t-shirt, this is what I got out of the challenge:

I learned blogging is hard work.

It was more difficult than I thought it would be to come up with a topic each day, carve out the time to craft a poem or narrative, organize my scattered-ness and edit my typos, and finally post it--only to read it later and find problems and typos glaring back at me!  I learned I really need to prewrite, in order to have time to walk away, then come back to it with fresh editor-eyes, so I can fix the glares before I publish, all by the daily deadline.

During the month I visited all kinds of blogs:  food blogs, travel blogs, animal/pet blogs, writing blogs, poetry blogs, personal blogs--and the list goes on. I saw many different styles of writing, content, voice, and style. I saw things I liked and wanted to try or imitate, and I saw things I didn't care for or wanted to avoid on my own blog. I FaceBook friended or followed blogs or tweets of several bloggers. I saw more traffic to my own blog and someone even started following my blog. [I've got a couple of Twitter followers (even though I think I've only tweeted once or twice) and I have several (still less than 100)  people who follow all my Pinterest Boards; however, until this challenge I had never had anyone follow my blog. Partly because I never promote it and partly because it's a personal blog with inconsistently timed posts of my un-themed written drivel.]

I'm still floundering with voice, style, and theme for my blog, but I think I've also grown a little--if only to be bolder--I normally lurk in the shadows of the blogs I follow. But during the challenge I *gasp* interacted with other bloggers.

And I survived.

In fact, I actually enjoyed the interactions. Total strangers read my posts and encouraged me. And when I saw how empowering that was, I in turn left comments on other blogs.

I still have lots of techy-stuff I need to figure out. Things like:
1) I never got the hang of linking my blog to anyone else's
2) I never figured out how to grab a badge (maybe my iPhone doesn't support that?).
3) Next year I need to remember to declare my blog content (I forgot and couldn't edit once I had registered).

And I need to set aside more Blog Reading Time each day.

One of the things I found frustrating--enough so I contacted the Challenge Administrator--was the inability to easily find my own blog each day because the number changed as blogs were culled. (I never found the search box mentioned in the FAQs--perhaps due to the limitations of my iPhone). This difficulty also meant I had a difficult time finding the 5 blogs before and after me (some of which were blocked when I attempted using my work computer during my lunch break). And it made finding random blogs I had enjoyed reading the day before, unless I followed them, difficult to refind. I also suggested it would be nice if we could pull up other blogs by name or by category.  It was way too time consuming to hunt for blogs specific to my interests because I had to scroll through 1,500-1,700 blog titles each time.

I also expressed my gratitude for all the Admins and work they had put into the challenge.   Even through my frustrations with the limitations of my iPhone, as well as the limitations of the challenge site, I LOVED this experience and I was learning a lot  about blogging through my own trial and error--but also by visiting other blogs, and interacting. I really didn't expect a response from the Admin during the challenge, but she graciously responded.

Overall, the A to Z Blogging Challenge 2015 was AWESOME and I look forward to next year. Maybe I'll have figured out some things by then--badge grabbing, challenge theme, linking and following... just a few of the basics.

Until next year, Happy Blogging! Of course, you're always welcome to stop by before the challenge...

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Last Nights Dream and My Analysis

OMGosh What A Dream I had last night--as always it was vivid, colorful, detailed, and involved most of the senses.  It's taken me the better part of the day (between errands) to type it--and I don't even remember  most of it--this was just the tiniest part of the end: 

I was on a some sort of a gambling tour I think because I was counting up all kinds of cash.  For some reason I got mad at Dr. M (the nicest guy ever) because he was standing behind me supposedly helping me count my money and he stopped before we were through.  I guess I couldn't count that high. 

The next stop for the tour bus was a hair salon. I looked in the mirror and my hair was fuller and grayer, with longer roots showing. And my dyed color was a darker brunette than my current faded out color. On a whim I decided I was going to cut it short and wear it spiky like Stacie--a soprano I know from Sanctuary Choir at FBCB--but luckily there wasn't enough time. I say luckily, because it was going to also be dyed hot pink! 

The next stop was in Panama City and I went off on my own--planning to meet back up with the tour at a store that was also a diner, but when I arrived I found a biker gang was there and our tour bus  had left early. Without me. 

I reviewed my situation:  I was stranded at a diner with a bunch of bikers, My iPhone and all my money had been left at a hotel whose name I could not recall. Compounding the problem, I couldn't remember the name of the street it was on--however I COULD remember how to get there.    

One of the bikers offered to give me a ride, but I declined since he had just ordered his meal. I thought I could direct a cab to the hotel, so I did allow him to flag down a cab for me. 

Unfortunately, the cab service was a futuristic automated, open air, pedi-cab sort of thing that did not take street by street directions. 

I began berating myself for not picking up a business card with the hotel name and address--something I do when traveling abroad, but rarely think to do stateside.

The waiter/stock boy began serving the helpful biker his meal and overheard my self-lecture. He said he "just happened to have" a piece of paper with the name of our hotel on it written on it. It had apparently been handed in with his tips (was there a cougar in the group?!).  I gushed my thanks and hugged him rather inappropriately (much longer than socially acceptable).

I requested to use the phone, but it too was futuristically odd looking and I could not get it to dial the number. I was however, able to call a long distance number. The third time the elderly woman on the other end of the call told me in no uncertain terms NOT to call her again. 

Hot tears of frustration rolled down my cheeks and my nose turned purple and runny. (I'm not a cute little crocodile-tear crier). 

After I brushed the tears from my eyes, I saw a blonde, whose lowered baseball cap obscured her face, stepped in front of me and slowly lifted her face--it was our tour guide--all smiles, and dimples, and was played by none other than Harriet. 

Somehow the tour was over and I was sitting in the driver seat of my SUV when I heard a scrabbling noise from the passenger seat.  

I looked in the direction of the noise, and a white mouse poked his head out of the side door pocket and started climbing up to the window. I didn't see if he made it out because I woke up screaming, in a cold sweat. 

And now my analysis of why certain things made it into my dream:

Counting money on a tour bus--I've been preoccupied with early retirement and retirement travel. And I offered my toes to Vickie
the other night when we were figuring up Liverpool Rummy scores. (Also in attendance was Linda, who has foot surgery yesterday.) Feet-Toes--close enough. 

Dr. M--never complains about anything; however, I overheard his voiced objection to the Swamp Rooms (no one at work likes them except the idiots that forced us in them). I guess since the guy that never complains even complained it validated everyone else's displeasure. 

Hair--my roots are long and I've toyed with a short cut to allow everything to go gray. Stacie used to have very short hair that she wore spiked. Although she's blonde, not pink. I think the pink came from one if those internet quizzes in addicted to--the Grease Pink Lady I got was Rizzo--a brash outspoken character with whom I relate. Also, one of the hair color choices in the quiz was pink (which I did not choose). 

Bikers--since the retirement of my Social Worker, my floor has been covered by the other SWers--one of whom used to ride a Ducati. SWers are by nature helpful. 

Stock boy/waiter was handsome and might have been the spitting image of a cute guy I know and wouldn't be opposed to hugging for a socially inappropriate length of time. ;~)

User-UNfriendly technology--I've been frustrated at work by my new work computer not having the correct programs on it, not having a desk phone, having to strain my eyes in the dark because the lighting is insufficient in the swamp, and observing a leaking "faucet" that's either the vacuum or the oxygen (also in the swamp)--I can't tell because the leak has been ineffectively "taped shut" with green tape. And the swamp was proclaimed to be adequate. Unbelievable! (I found it late in the day Friday so I haven't reported it yet.)

Hot tears of frustration. Evident to even the blind or stupid--I'm extremely frustrated with work at the moment.

Harriet posted about an invitation and I know one of the upcoming Aware fundraisers is a Painting With A Twist in June. 

The scrabbling mouse sound was actually Moggy worrying a bag with my newest purchase (that is still in the bag because I've come home dead tired the last couple of days): it's a new portable CD player--to replace the one stolen from my former office at work. 

There you have it--the inner workings of my mind. I'm always amazed at how my mind works. Especially in my dreams. 

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Small Actions Can Make A Huge Impact On Others.

Walking back from a late lunch today a girl looked at me sideways as she passed by. She said hello and I returned the greeting. We walked on and she slowed her pace to mine. I could tell she was going to initiate a conversation. I really wasn't in the mood, so steeled myself.

And forced myself to be nice.

She said, "You probably don't remember me, but I worked in Food Service about 8 years ago. I've been working in a different department for the last five years and I'm about to open my own business."

I congratulated her  and admitted that while she was familiar, I couldn't recall her name. But I also reminded her that I change people's names all the time. She laughed because she knew first hand that was a true statement.

She went on to say she was going around the hospital seeing people that had made a difference in her life--and she had been on all the wards starting with the 6th floor and going down to the first because she couldn't remember where this one girl worked. She had finally given up and just started roaming around. We were in the Basement, so I joked she really had been roaming.

Then she told me I was the girl!

I laughed and told her if she had gone to my office she would have thought I was no longer working for the VA because I was now in the Swamp Room (several people--mostly former residents, a couple of housekeepers, and some ancillary staff--have said they thought I had quit because all my stuff was gone).

I've been grieving the loss of that office because it was a much better office--people used to stop by all the time--in fact, so frequently I used to complaining couldn't get all my documentation fine. I've only had two visitors in the Swamp--and as time consuming as all the previous visitors were--I really miss them. One MD that gets a lot of consults from my floor used to come by 2-3 times a week--even when he didn't have a consult. And when he brought new employees with him, he would joke and say I was his morning pitt stop. I especially miss his stories about the trips he and his wife were taking.

Anyway, this girl reminded me that when she first started working at the VA she saw me in my office and came in to talk with me--and it clicked--she was the girl that would come and cry because her heart was broken over the Veteran she had just talked with. That actually happened many times--she is very tender-hearted. And every time, she would come talk about it with me. We would talk, and cry, and I would encourage her. I should have offered to pray with her. But I didn't. Once or twice, when she was especially upset, I prayed for her AFTER she left. But I failed to pray WITH her.

Just think how much MORE encouraged she could have been if I had told her I was praying for her--or if I had actually prayed WITH her! Those were lost opportunities to bless her even more.

Our conversation today reminds me of several things:

1). I should lift others up more often--both in private, and WITH them present.

2). My actions--even the small ones--have lasting effects.

3). I need to look up people who have influenced and encouraged ME,  and tell THEM!

I have been very blessed. At every stage of my life, people have reminded me of something I did (that was pretty insignificant to me), that turned out to be a blessing to them. It was usually something really simple--like when I listened or encouraged or helped them with some small (to me) problem.

And one other thing--even though it's harder to find me in the swamp--I can still be found.

Monday, May 4, 2015

A Second Grey Fox in a Week?!

I saw another grey fox tonight--this one was at the intersection of Adams and Highway 317 (I was on the way to drop off an audio book that was overdue but still within the grace period--I arrived at the Temple Library only to reach for the CDs and realize I turned them in LAST night!). It wasn't a wasted trip though because I was charging my iPhone (my new household charger is no longer working, so I'm back to charging in my car). So I'm taking my time driving one of the back ways in to Temple when an animal darted across the road. 

At first I thought it was a baby deer and it was looking for the Mama--but the gait and color were wrong. Then I thought it was a fox--the grey color was right, but it was really big for a fox--almost the size of a small German Shepard. Plus, it was rather odd that I was seeing a second grey fox in a weeks time. 

I finally realized: it's NOT a fox--it's a coyote! 

I know we have coyotes around here because I hear them howling from time to time but prior to this, the only coyote I'd ever seen before was Wiley E.  And that's fine by me--they eat pets and cart off small babies. 

Okay, the baby thing might be a legend--but I really don't want to encounter one. Especially since it's a full moon. I'm just glad that coyote wasn't a werewolf or a vampire. 

I don't normally think about werewolves or vampires, but a while back I was at Half-Price Books and they had bundles of 5 books for a dollar. Since I only have about 75 unread books in stacks around the house, I picked up three bundles. I think subconsciously I'm going for a "to read list" of 100+  either that, or I just can't pass up a book sale. 

There was only one book I wanted in the bundle I opened up the other day, but I normally buy books at a buck each, so the bundle for a buck meant that's 4 freebies. 

I picked up one of the freebies to take to work to read at lunch. It's not anything I would have ever picked out. But evidentially it's a popular series that was turned into the HBO series "True Blood." The characters are were panthers and vampires and fairies and I don't know what else. The shape-shifters (were panthers etc) change during the full moon. 

Since  the book talks about were I'm wondering if there are also were coyotes....

And the iPhone is now up to 62%.  That should be enough to last through the long as I don't play Words With Friends or solitaire or Google were coyotes to see if they exist. 

Friday, May 1, 2015

The Little Grey Fox From Downtown

The little grey fox I frequently see in downtown Belton actually walked up to my car tonight. In my driveway. Granted, I live less than 2 miles from where I normally see him--but I was still a little shocked. 

I guess it's not a cat or the opossum that's been cleaning dead varmints from the undercarriage of my SUV and leaving their scent all over the yard--causing Bandit to try to climb into the wheel-base, or run around in crazy tracking mode after all.