Sunday, June 22, 2008

Such a Slacker

I'm sitting here staring at my blog archives. Hard for me to believe that at this time last year, I already had at least 33 entries (and that was only from April to June)! I think the title of this entry says it all.
Last month, I played "dutiful daughter" and went Iowa with my sister for a shin-dig at my mother's alma mater. They had Linda Purl come and sing. Remember her from "Happy Days" (Fonzie's fiance) and "Matlock"? She is also an accomplished jazz singer. I really enjoyed it; her performance was top notch, plus her banter was really funny!
The trip itself started out as a comedy of errors. My sister and I took the red-eye from San Francisco to Chicago on what had to be the most broken down plane in the fleet. And what's up with the distance between seat nowadays? I swear, by knees were almost touching the seat in front of me. Neither of us had slept much the night before, & we resigned ourselves to another night of little rest.
We had an uneventful and more comfortable flight to Omaha, where we picked up our rental & drove to Sioux City (my sister was trying to save money on the flights). As we were pulling out of the lot, my sister said, "Do you smell oil?" Tired and somewhat cranky, I replied, "No, let's just get on the road." She spent the next 90 minutes keeping me awake and entertained while I tried to keep my eyes open and drive between the lines. This is the point where I will publicly admit that I should have listened to her in Omaha. When we were pulling off the freeway on our way to the hotel, the oil smell got a lot stronger. As soon as we slowed down and parked, we noticed white smoke starting to wisp out from under the hood. My first thought? "Oh crap, she's gonna blow!" Lucky for me, the mid-west is full of good people, who are willing to help out when someone is in distress. A bus driver (who was grandfather-type) ambled over and said, "Ladies, I want you to pop that hood." You should have seen the white clouds billowing out of the engine when I did what he asked! Turns out, the rocket scientists at the car rental agency had changed the oil and forgot to put the oil cap back on. What a mess! *Note to anyone renting from Budget in the Sioux City, Iowa area: there is no Budget office in Sioux City and they will not come and pick up the car from you. I ended up having to go to the Hyundai dealership, where they cleaned up the engine and gave me a new oil cap. They were so nice, they didn't have it in stock, so they took it off of a new car!
And my mother wonders why I don't like to travel anymore...

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Little Girl

Eighteen years ago, this fluffy little furball wandered onto my patio and into my life. We called her "Little Girl," because she was the smallest in the litter, and we couldn't find a name that fit her any better. Once in a while, if you are very lucky (or truly blessed), you will have an animal that becomes less of a pet and more of an extension of you. Little Girl was that kind of animal.
Hands down, she was the sweetest cat that has ever owned me (I'm just being realistic here... felines humor us into thinking we own them). Her rumbly purr started the minute my hand touched her fur. She would always come nuzzle me if I was crying. I used to "fake cry," just to get the attention. If she thought I was distressed she would come running, rubbing up against me, head butting me, as if to say, "Here - pet me - I'll make you feel better." I'd run my hands through her soft fur (she felt like an angora rabbit), listen to her purr, and start to feel less tragic.
I have never had a cat that liked to be brushed as much as she did. She loved it so much, that she would do it herself, if you held the brush up for her. For a while, I thought about renaming her "Thumper", after the rabbit in Bambi. The inspiration? Just look here.
I know it's probably an insult to felines, but I used to think that Little Girl had some dog in her somewhere. She was faithful, always followed me around, and waited on the windowsill for me to come home. Eighteen years ago, Little Girl wandered into my life. On Tuesday, she slipped out of my life, but she will always remain in my heart.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Some of What I've Been Up To

So, why was I away? In all honesty, some things were happening in my life that made blogging about yarn and cats seem insignificant. A friend of mine lost her battle with breast cancer and at about the same time, my cousin was diagnosed with cancer. I'm very happy to say that things are looking good for my cousin...the cancer was caught early and has been treated aggressively. Me? I did what I always do when I'm stressed; try to bury myself in work and other distractions, so I wouldn't have a chance to think too much. Luckily, summer's almost here and things seem to be getting back on track.

Some of the things that have happened while I wasn't blogging:

Cut and donated my hair.

14 inches gone!

I also tortured the cats at Christmas. She looks thrilled, doesn't she?

My mother's dumb beast is always fun to pester (Mom always leaves him with me for a few months during the winter so he doesn't have to fly back and forth to Seattle).
Winter was colder than expected. Jack Frost did a number on my car too many times to count. But it was pretty, wasn't it?