Saturday, June 25, 2011

A full week.

I shall start with Wednesday.
Brother were playing at River Rhythms and the forecast wasn't good.
We seem to have had more rain than is usual and Wednesday wasn't any different.
But, it was Brother !!!! As Philip had said " she will go even if there is a tornado"
So, we went and it stayed dry.
Brother were brill as usual and a good time was had by all. Even Philip seemed to enjoy it this time, in between playing games on his phone........oh did I mention his new phone?

Thursday it was back to the Tooth Fairy who after taking another x ray has decided to let things alone for another 3 weeks.
He showed me the x rays and even I could see that the bone was filling in the gap....gradually.
So, the plan at this stage is to finish the root canal next time and then, if necessary, do the nasty surgery bit after that.
Friday was a bit pants because I was meant to go swimming with June but the pool was too blooming cold again. She is getting so mad about this.
She says we will try again on Monday. I am not hopeful. I think this is a cost cutting exercise.

After bringing them home we went to the post office to send off for my new passport.
My new AMERICAN passport.
I had filled in all the paperwork, got photos (which were gruesome to say the least - I have one left which I think I will use to keep the mice off the mushrooms), I had my certificate of citizenship .......what I didn't have was an appointment.
We didn't know you had to have an appointment. So, I made one for Wednesday but just as we got in the car they called us back and a very kind lady said as it wasn't busy she would do it then.
I shot back in, she stapled my picture in ( I may ceremoniously burn the other one instead of frightening the mice.....what have they ever done to me?), I then had to swear again that it was all correct and she said it would take about 4 weeks.
How sweet of her to do that for me?
So, another little job done and it was on to our own cat's vet's.
A week ago they had insisted Bubba needed special food because he still has the trots and the recent exams showed nothing.
They said it could be a food allergy. We were caught off guard when we were charged $54 for a bag of dry food and another $52 for 24 small cans.
We shouldn't have bought it but it sort of took us by surprise and we did.........silly sods.
Anyway, not only did he hate it, but it also made him 10 times worse.
So, today we took the 23 remaining cans back and got a refund. Unfortunately we couldn't take back the bag of food as it had been opened.
Our vet is now treating him for inflammatory bowel disease. He has tablets to take and we should know in a week if they are working or not.
The next bit was classic though.
They told us that the other vet has started doing acupuncture .....yes really........and if these tablets didn't work then we might want to think about doing that.
Of course, the other vet would need to do a "Chinese consultation and examination" to see what was needed.
Oh for heavens sake.
"Acupuncture on a cat" arse. Chinese arse.
I can't even imagine how much they would want for that. Poor Bubba........let's stick needles in him now.

Friday, June 17, 2011

New Yanks.

Yesterday was a very full, slightly surreal sort of day.
We were due at the courthouse at 8am for our swearing in ceremony and taking the oath.
Sigh...........8am........downtown on a weekday.
So, I was up at 5am to sort out kittens and get myself suited and booted for the occasion.
I don't like getting up this early, but we would have to leave by 7am because we weren't sure of the traffic/parking situation.
Philip checked the address on our notifications and then played around with his new gadget to get it checked out on the map.
Oh didn't I tell you about the new gadget?
He has an iphone........whatever that is. I have a regular phone.
They came the day before amid much excitement from one of us. The one which isn't me.
I don't like phones. Actually that is a lie. I like phones that are just for phoning people but I can't stand the blooming things that have all the bells and whistles.
I know I am in the minority in this but then I usually am.
Anyway, having decided he knew exactly where it was and that there was ample parking in a car park right there........we set off.
We arrived, parked and found the entrance to the courthouse.
Having presented our paperwork to the security man we were rather dismayed to be told we were totally in the wrong building, wrong block, wrong street and quite a distance from the Federal Courthouse which was where we were supposed to be.
The nice man gave us directions and, now in panic mode as the ample time we had allowed was dwindling rapidly, we set off again.
I am not saying that someone was too wrapped up in his new gadget to actually pay proper attention to the address and map................but it was a distinct possibility.
What would happen if we were late?
Would we be deported? Who knew.
Eventually we found the building. A huge, imposing building with lots of cars parked around it and no car park.
We then found a meter in a street a little way away and ran to the courthouse........actually I hobbled.
I had put on a posh frock and some shoes I only ever wear if I am not going to be walking anywhere much. My better half had assured me we wouldn't be walking as the car park was in the other building.........but then it wasn't.
Those shoes hurt big time.
Not a good start so far.
We arrived in the correct building with a minute or two to spare only to be confronted with a long line of people waiting for the same thing.
We didn't actually get into the court for almost an hour.
There were lighter moments. A lady in front of us dashed off to the loo and when she returned she had a tail of toilet paper hanging out of the back of her trousers.
I had a little angel on one shoulder saying..."oh poor lady, you must tell her", and a little devil on the other saying "no don't this is bloody hilarious".
I waited a minute or two as she was in a group of people and I knew it would embarrass her if I told her. Just as I thought one of the guys spotted it and let her know. Oh she must have felt so silly.
Before we got into the courthouse we were handed our new citizens pack. This contained various booklets and documents, a letter from the president and an American flag.
Then we had to give up our Green Cards. This was the hardest thing to do. It felt quite unnerving to hand that over. Philip felt the same way. It must be because we fought so long and hard to get them that it was hard to part with them. It was like taking away your safety net.
Once in the court we were instructed to stand (77 of us) for the judge to enter.
I whispered to Philip that we might get Judge Judy. He poo pooed me.....of course.
His face must have been a picture when the door opened and the closest impression of Judge Judy came in. She was about the same height, she had the same hair and was about the same age. "Oh it is Judge Judy" quoth I. I think he could have murdered me.
She was lovely. She told us about being American Citizens and how we should embrace the country but keep our own traditions alive.
We then took the Oath of Allegiance.
On the way out we received our certificates of citizenship.

We made our way down in the lift (suppose I should say elevator now) and I was the only one who was waving my flag.
I waved it like crazy.........Philip, I think, was pretending he was with someone else, but the security guys loved it. They congratulated me and wished us luck.
We now have to get US passports (yuk more passport photos) and new social security cards etc.
Quite an adventure.
Almost forgot...........after all of this ceremony etc, we got back into the car and Philip discovered his trousers had been undone all the way through.
They must have him marked down as some sort of perv now.

Then in the afternoon it was all back to normality with a trip to the vet's with the kittens.
One has snotters. Poor Benny had been snuffling and snorting. He was obviously congested.
Of course the others would get it too. The vet gave us antibiotics for them all. Another 10 days of jollop.
Every time we think we are over all the hurdles with these little guys ....they get something else.
The vet was generally pleased with their progress though. They have put on weight and she said they smell a lot sweeter than when they first came in.
They were very glad to get home and had lots of cuddles.
Then in the evening we went out for a picnic with Gary.
A full day really.

Monday, June 13, 2011


This isn't Cedarburg......these are a couple of the pictures Gary took on Wednesday evening when we had our picnic by the lake.
I like this first one because you can see the Milwaukee skyline.

It was a lovely evening and we really, really must go back and do that again.
So peaceful sitting by the lake, drinking wine and eating our picnic.
Philip was on call all the weekend so we couldn't go far.
Saturday we bimbled about shopping etc.
Sunday we decided on a little trip to Cedarburg.
Cedarburg is a small town, with old houses. It has lots of little shops and a fab winery.

You can take tours of the winery and there are lots of shops in there that sell lots of lovely sparkly things.
Instead of earrings...which I usually buy....this time I bought a pair of sparkly sandals.
They were only $10.
I think it is quite refreshing to find these specialty shops that are also reasonably priced.
We also walked along the main street, stopping at various stores. The stores are often in big old houses that have rooms crammed with all sorts of nonsense.
Some have Christmas decorations too.......oh bliss.
The weather was lovely and as we walked we talked about times and treats gone by.
I mentioned the time we found peanut butter cookie dough ice cream. We only found it once when we first came over here almost 14 years ago. We had never seen it since.
We stopped in the old fashioned sweet shop and almost bought one of their flavoured ice creams but decided to continue along for a bit.
We came to a shop called The Ice Cream Factory. This would do.
We were gob smacked when there, in all it's delicious glory, was .......Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Ice Cream.
Oh it was wonderful. .....and how strange to find like that after we had just been talking about it.
Time then to go home and feed the monsters.

I think Tootsie is showing off her seven toes in this one.

They have discovered the window.
I can only have them open like this when I am home as they climb the window screen and I am frightened they will hurt themselves.
I decided to lie on the bed in that bedroom and watch a Carry On film with them.
They all piled on me......two under my chin, a couple on my arm and one on my belly.
The purring almost drowned out the sound of the movie but it was like therapy.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Country & Western......pants.

This is Tootsie's favourite hiding place. Strange kitty.

Last night was the first River Rhythms of the year........supposedly.
The last few days have been very hot.....98F and there was threats of thunderstorms for yesterday afternoon & evening.
We kept a close watch on the weather situation as there is no point sitting in a park in a major thunderstorm.
Philip was home as he had an appointment with a urologist as a follow up to his kidney stone adventure.
Armed with the stone in a jar, he set off in the morning to the hospital. Firstly though, he had to drop Bubba off at the animal hospital as he was having his ultra sound to determine why his liver didn't show up on the x-ray.
Philip's appointment seemed to go well, he has various things he has to do and they are going to analyse the stone to see what caused it.
The general opinion though is that it is probably due to genetics as both his brothers had kidney stones.
He also had a prostate exam which he was not happy about ( he wasn't expecting that!). I will let him tell you himself about that .......if he wants to.
Suffice to say I wasn't too sympathetic about it as the things women have to go through make the prostate exam fade into insignificance.
He picked Bubba up on his way back and the results of the ultra sound were normal. No idea why his liver didn't show on the x ray but they then wanted to do an endoscopy and take biopsies from every which way.
They said it could be inflammatory bowel disease or cancer.
They seemed a bit put out when Philip said we would try treatment for inflammatory bowel disease first before we start on all the other invasive stuff.
I have just spoken to our vet who agrees and Bubba will soon be on a special diet.
I really hope this works as I dread to think how much the other stuff will cost. It isn't that we wouldn't pay it for him but I don't like to think of him going through all that only to be told that he has cancer and nothing can be done.
Keep your fingers crossed for him please.

On then to River Rhythms.
Or not.
The storms looked like they would hit later so we set off.
As we got into Downtown we noticed more and more people about. They couldn't all be going to River Rhythms as the first couple are generally a little quiet until everyone realises they are on again.
The crowds grew greater the nearer we got. Something was afoot.
But what? I hadn't heard of anything.
I had my 25 cents ready for the parking meter but Philip doubted we would find one amongst the heaving throng.
He was right. Pants. We would have to go to the parking lot and pay $5. We hate having to do that.
And HA again.
We got to the parking lot................the fee for tonight...........$30.
WHAT!! We tried all the other lots.........they were all the same.
There was no way we could find a parking space and no way we were paying $30.
Philip dropped me off at the River Rhythms park so I could go and tell Gary, who gets there before us. I told him we couldn't park so we couldn't do River Rhythms. He had no idea why all these people had descended on Milwaukee either.
I then spoke to one of the organisers. He told me......there was a Taylor Swift concert on.
Apparently it is some country & western singer. Obviously popular with the people of Milwaukee......even more popular with the owners of the car parks.
Philip picked us up, but rather than go home, he found a lovely park on the lakefront which had picnic tables. It was beautiful. A lovely evening. A flotilla of small boats out on the lake. We had our picnic, had a good chat with Gary and then took him home. I really enjoyed it and fully intend on going there for a picnic again.
So, all was not lost. Poxy Taylor Swift may have buggered up River Rhythms for us (and for many others I suspect) but our evening was still a success.
Gary took some photos for me and I will put a couple up when he sends them.
The storms held off until about 11pm........but wow.........they were very fierce and seemed to go on for hours.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Glorious weekend.

Navy Band Horizon

River Rhythms starts this Wednesday.
We have had a glorious weekend. Sunny and warm, around 85 F.
It looks as if it will continue so Wednesday should be a go. We will meet Gary over there and wonder how another year has flown by so quickly.
The above band will be the first one of the season. We haven't seen them before but their website looks promising.

Take a peek.

I enjoy River Rhythms because they do try to have a good variety of music.
The only ones I am not so fond of are the Reggae bands.
There are two lined up for this year. I find them rather boring. I can never tell where one song ends and another begins.

Brother (the Aussie blokes in leather kilts......"Nurse the screens"), are back again on June 22nd.

Brother last year.

Philip will be reading his Kindle and muttering while they are on.
Or he may take the opportunity of having a snooze like he did last year.

I won't be snoozing.........oooooh Matron!!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Looking up

A better day today.
The kittens are now playing again.
This is good.
Kittens who do not play are not well.
I will admit it is hard work.
It takes me over an hour to get them sorted out in the morning.
Then I have to check on them/feed them/ wash them/ cuddle them ...all day.
Bottoms don't wash themselves you know.
Trouble is they have no momma.
Momma would clean them, wash them after they have pooped, wash their faces and cuddle them while they sleep.
So, I need to be momma.

It is tiring but rewarding.
Especially with this lot.
They so want people company............I have never known kittens like it.
Today I sat with them for ages. They all want to cuddle.
They will be brilliant cats.
We still have to get over a couple of health issues but it is looking brighter than before.

On another note.
We had to take Bubba to the vet's today. He has been poorly for a while. Trots.
He has had blood tests which didn't reveal anything.
So today he had x rays.......hmmm.......bit worrying.
His liver didn't show up at all.
The vet couldn't understand it.
So, he has to have an ultra sound on Wednesday. Poor Bubba is 13 years old.
I have a bad feeling about it all but I am hoping it will all turn out fine and maybe he will just have to have a special diet.
Bubba is such a sweetheart. He is the only one who has been desperate to meet the kittens.
It would have been lovely to see him with them all but they are not allowed to mingle with our kits.
Please be ok Bubba.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Dodgy Day

A dodgy day yesterday.
The kittens were not very well at all.
They had the trots & colitis (blood in the poop), sticky eyes & sneezes.
Their meds were dropped off in the afternoon and I gave them all their jollop and eye ointment.
They still loved me.
They miss momma cat, big time. They just want to all clamber on your lap and snuggle.

When I gave them their dinner I noticed the littlest one, Rosko, the ginger one at the back with his head up, wasn't interested in eating.
Oh this is not good. Kittens should be ravenous at all times.
I tried to tempt him to eat but he wasn't having any of it.
So, we bought some kitten milk. I fed him with a syringe as he wouldn't lap it.
They all then went to sleep and we were very worried.
I thought he might not wake up.

We gave them their last feed of the evening and Rosko came charging out of the bed, dived into his food dish and scoffed his grub.
What a relief !!
They all ate well this morning and they have started to play again. They didn't play yesterday.
So, I am tentatively hopeful that this medication works and that they will continue to thrive.
I gave them a lecture about now they are getting over the trots it is time to stop "thinking outside the box".

I have to say they are the most people friendly kittens I have every met. Whoever adopts them will have wonderful cats.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Famous Five

The little monsters are causing some concern.

They are really too young to be without a mummsy and they are a bit poorly.
They have had the trots and this morning they were throwing up.
They are too small to take much of this.
The manager of the shelter is picking up some meds today and she will drop them off later.
She said that should soon sort them out.
I do hope so.
They are such funny little things, probably the friendliest kittens I have met.
They all want to be on your lap and want to snuggle in for a snooze.
They don't care what I do to , bottom washing, face washing, eye drops, clipping claws.......they still come back for more and love me.

Hopefully the meds will sort it all out quickly and I won't have to worry so much about them.
They are all now named.

Treacle.............naughty, funny girl.
Tippie Toes.......7 toes on each front foot, sweet little girl.
Bootsie..............also 7 toes and a boy.
Benny................extra toes and a bit of a thicky.
Rosko................very sweet, very much a baby boy.