Wednesday, October 25, 2006


Monday when I walked into the hall I had a surprise. Right there on the floor by the bathroom was a snake, which had clearly been killed in an encounter with my cat.

It was on its back, had blood about the head, and a big gash in its belly.

I took its picture, then decided to flip it, thinking maybe to paint an ATC later, making it seem more alive.

I grabbed it by the tail, with only a bit of kleenex to protect me from snake boogers, and flipped it quite easily. It really did look better right side up, if one ignored the blood on its head and the bump of the belly gash. I took the photo, then I went off to put my camera away.

When I came back, I did an immediate U turn, and fetched the camera once more - because that dead snake was moving down the hall toward my living room! I took its picture as it turned the corner.

Then I got a paper sack and a pencil. I nudged the snake into the sack with the pencil; then took it outside and set it free amid the weeds under the fence.

When I returned an hour later, there was no sign of our friend. Perhaps a bird got it - or perhaps it slithered away to a safer place.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

A Good Day

Today was a good day! Ron and Michelle and kids came to Lodi, and brought baby stuff with them. They not only gave it to me, they hauled it down, carried it in, and set it up! The only problem is that now Margo's room is a bit crowded - one would have to crawl into the bed from one end.

Here is the changing table, with some crib sheets stored on the bottom.

Here is the crib, and a nice comfy rocker, complete with footstool. Michelle says she has spent months in that rocker!

Not only did they set the baby room up, Ron did bunches more. 1) He checked out my washer, which has been leaking. I'd thought it was just a loose hose, but Ron diagnosed something more severe. He recommends a repairman; Michelle recommends buying a new washer. 2) He put salt in my water softner, which will hopefully decrease the amount of lime scale I'll need to fight for the next month or so. 3) He filled the bin with dog food, so Jet won't starve. 4) He emptied that darned trash compactor that threw my back out. Luckily, it did not attack his back. Finally, 5) they took me out to lunch at Strings.

Ian is really growing up fast! At lunch he ate like a big boy, managing his own fork quite competently - especially for a lad of only 2 1/2. Already he knows his colors, and can count to 15, and is speaking in sentences! I can't always understand everything he says, but he's saying it. I'm impressed. Here is a picture of Ian at his birthday party, when he did not appear to be nearly so adept at the use of a fork. (Dumb me, I didn’t think to take new pictures of anyone today.)

The girls are going to a new Christian school, rather than the public school they'd attended before. They really like the school, says Lauren. Shelby just got back from a week long school retreat - team building, social studies, science, crafts. Neat stuff.

Saturday, October 14, 2006


Today I woke up feeling pretty good. So I dressed for around the house, and started trying to get things done. I started the sprinkler on the lawn, fed the dog, then came in and decided to pull the trash out of my trash compactor and toss it in the garbage bin.

Bad mistake. As I pulled, I suddenly both felt and heard a loud POP POP POP POP POP across the base of my back. OUCH! I leaned against the fridge until the pain diminished a little, then I very carefully stood upright. Whew - I managed it. Wasn't sure if I'd be able to. I staggered into the living room, found the number, and phoned my chiropractor.

Thank goodness! He was in, and could see me. I picked up my purse and keys, and hobbled directly to my car to drive to town. I did not stop to put in teeth, to put on bra, or even to brush my hair. I needed help one hell of a lot more than I needed to look decent.

Doctor Gerard adjusted my back, then gave me an ice pack treatment with electrical stimulation. He instructed me not to sit too long; to get up and walk around frequently. He told me not to do any heavy lifting - not a necessary admonition, as at this point I couldn't if I wanted to. And he told me to use ice packs at least 4 times a day, until I come back Monday. I've been following instructions, to the letter. I've never thrown my back out like this before - and I most certainly don't want to do it again.

But the trash still sits in the trash compactor... where I suspect it will stay for some while.

Saturday I plan to drive to Vacaville, meet some ladies from my ATC group, eat lunch with them, and then drive home again. Suddenly it seems like an incredibly ambitious project. Wish me luck.