October 20, 2009

October 18, 2009

Winston's Drinking Problem

A while back I read that cats are quite often dehydrated. Thus, anything that gets a cat to drink water should be encouraged. This is probably why those cat drinking fountains make so much money. My cats have always seemed to prefer faucets, and that's why you will often find our tub dripping.

Recently, Winston has discovered that he likes water. No, he LOVES water. Especially if it's not his. If you have a cup of water, he's going to drink out of it. This is troublesome if you actually wanted that water. Or a dry table. Because I'm a pushover, I've just been holding the cup for him while he gets his fill. I'm always surprised by how much of it he drinks. And then I need a refill...

His latest find is the pot full of cold water that DS soaks his hand in to help with his eternally sore climbing fingers. Does Winston care that DS's hand is submerged in this pot of water? No. Not at all. In fact, I think he might consider it seasoning.

Fall and Food

If you follow me on Facebook or Twitter, you've probably heard me complaining about the warm weather we're having in Santa Barbara. Not that it's been unbearably hot. But there is something distinctly wrong with picking pumpkins in shorts. This is not an activity you're supposed to do in 86 degree weather. We did, however, and we still managed to enjoy ourselves.

We went to Lane Farms, which is in town and about 3 or 4 blocks from our apartment. They had a nicely sized corn maze which was actually well designed. At least, DS and I were lost in it for quite a while. We never did find the exit, but finally managed to find the entrance again. This is partly to be blamed on us assuming the exit should be on the opposite edge, and partly on DS deciding he was too hungry to enjoy further attempts.

There were no tractor rides out to the pumpkin patch; in fact, there wasn't anywhere to go. It's a small place. The pumpkins were all nice looking though, and arranged in rows around actual pumpkin plants that were still growing. The best part? They had pumpkin butter and apple butter for sale! We love that stuff SO MUCH.

Last night DS experimented with a marinade for chicken that involved olive oil and orange juice and zest. It was so juicy and delicious! I was in charge of the salad. We've discovered that we really like spinach, and it's relatively cheap here, so all salad are spinach based at our place. Most of my salads consist of spinach, pine nuts, and then whatever fruit we have lying around. Last night this was dried cranberries, the left over orange slices not used for the chicken, and I added some tomato slices to mine. The tomato was from my downstairs neighbors' backyard, and had been on the window sill for a while. It was time to eat it. I wasn't sure how it would go with the cranberries and oranges, but I was happy to discover that oranges and tomatoes actually taste good together! The whole thing was topped with raspberry vinaigrette. And also there was Sam Adams Oktoberfest beer, in my new "Paper Bag Parade" pint glasses.

Today for lunch, we had cored apple slices, banana slices and almonds with peanut butter, apple butter and pumpkin butter as dipping options. Who knew that bananas and pumpkin butter go great together? Also, so do almonds and apple butter!

All in all, things here are good. I finally got my first paycheck, so we were able to stock the fridge again with things that are actually yummy, instead of a bunch of cheap stuff that would keep our bodies working. We're still working to make ends meet, but at least we can do so on bellies full of scrumptious food! Also, I'm enjoying discovering random foods that go well together. Food is becoming a sort of art form for me. Like an experiment in taste. As long as I don't have to use the stove...

October 14, 2009


I've been keeping myself too busy to blog, but as I have a brief respite, I though I would give you a quick run down on what I've been doing.

1. Made hand-dipped peanut butter balls for my husband's 30th birthday. A LOT of them. This was the very last one, and as I keep them refrigerated until I eat them, they get a little sweaty. However, I have yet had someone taste them that did not fall in love. My papaw's recipe is still the winner!

2. I've been volunteering at the Santa Barbara Wildlife Care place. There was one afternoon of "training", and now I go in a few hours a week. My first day I was sent to the zoo to pick up a sparrow that had nearly drowned in a pool. The poor thing was nearly dead when I got him back to the center. I held in my hands under a heat lamp for an hour, occasionally feeding him electrolytes. Now he is happy and perky, and awaiting the healing of an injury before being released again. I have learned that as long as you have gloves on, you get over touch bird poop very quickly. And also the meal worms some of the birds eat. But this is worth getting to help pretty little things like European Starlings, Meadowlarks, and Warblers get well. Also, Starlings and Sparrows are tricky bastards. When cleaning a cage, we put the bird in a temporary enclosure to help keep them calm. This is usually a basket with some netting or a towel pinned to the top. These little guys would be in there, and then I'd go to the kitchen for fresh food and come back to them hopping around on the floor like it's perfectly normal for a bird that can't fly and has one taped wing. Sneaky!

3. My scarves have been surprisingly popular! Also, a family member ordered seven to sell in her bricks and mortar store. So most of my free time for the last two weeks have involved heavy weaving. I've been very happy with the results:

This one is in Lion Brand Color Waves in Lava. It's mostly black with a lot of jewel tone accents.

Here are four scarves done in Red Heart Casual Cot'n, one each in Trailside, Preppie, Majestic, and Falling Leaves. I need to get more of this yarn. The scarves feel wonderful, and I love the colors.

And sadly, I'm already out of Falling Leaves.

4. I started a new job on September 28th. Now that training is over, I'm doing real work. So far, I actually kind of like it. It pretty simple stuff, and I get to talk to people all day. Considering I only interacted with one person in my previous job, this is an improvement.

5. Today I got off work early, and all the scarves are mailed. So I'm taking a break before starting into the Christmas ornament production to curl up with Winston and a book. Speaking of Winston... if I'm in the craft room, he's in he craft room. And if there are clean clothes that aren't put away, they are without a doubt his new bed. On Monday, DS's pile was too high to lay on, so he just shoved his face into them and fell asleep...