Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Is this hairbrush for me?!?

We currently have one cat, who graciously allows us to live in his house where we are given the pleasure of feeding him and cleaning his litter box. His name is MacDuff (from Shakespeare's Macbeth), or Duff for short.

It’s clear (if you ask him) that he runs the joint, and he keeps us around only for the occasional belly scratch and ear rub. He tolerates our additional pets with clear disdain, and ignores them most of the time as they are clearly beneath him.


He suffers the indignity of forced socialization by feigning sleep and transporting his mind to an island in the pacific where he is hand-fed shrimp nibblets by Persian kitties in string bikinis. Where catnip grows wild by his blanket on the beach.

He is clearly too good for us.

That is until recently when we brought him home his very own plaything. A hairbrush with legs, otherwise known as a hedgehog.

At first he wasn’t sure what to make of the little ball of spines. A trial sniff taught him to respect the power of those quills against his sensitive nose. This obviously wasn’t a tasty snack like most of the other animals we bring home, this one could hurt him back!

A few days of careful observation left him more confused than ever. What is this thing? What is it used for? Where does it fit in, in relation to me?

Finally, one day when he saw the pointy thing on his human’s lap he decided to intervene. That was his territory! Not even the snakes dared to intrude on the sacred lap space, and he would NOT allow this infidel to claim his throne. So up he jumped, braving the quills to push the intruder out of the way, ignoring the sniffs of the displaced hedgehog.


Wait… what was that? Is it licking me?


Ahhh, now I see, my own personal kitteh grooming device.


The master of the house domain has spoken, I will allow him to stay.

Duff has since decided that Zathras belongs to him. He runs over whenever the cage is opened to greet his friend. One day I actually had to stop him from climbing into the cage with Zathras, he was so excited that his buddy was getting up. He spends a lot of time just hanging out there, waiting for movement from the igloo. It’s cute in a weird sort of way.

The only thing he doesn’t understand is why Zathras won’t share his food with him. He’s stuck his paw through the bars a few times, trying to sneak a treat out of the bowl while Zathras eats, but the hedgie immediately balls up, effectively covering his entire dish with a barrier of quills. Duff respects the power of the pointy things, but you can’t blame a guy for trying.


Renewal Video

I have a quickie post for now, but I’ll be back in a little bit for something longer.

I uploaded the video of our vow renewal to Facebook yesterday, but a few people want to see it who aren’t Facebook users.  So I’ll embed it here to make everyone happy.  :D

Don’t miss me kicking John at the 2:55 mark.  lol

If you don’t know the back story on this video, you can read about it (and see pictures) here:

didn’t I Do this before?


Wednesday, February 18, 2009

didn’t I Do this before?

Let me lay out a time line for you…

John and I met online twelve years ago in a B5 chat room.

We met face to face eleven years ago at a Scifi convention. (Why yes, we’re geeks. I make no apologies for that)

Eight years ago we were married.

Got that down? Ok good!

When he moved from New York to Wisconsin to be with me and the kids, he was warned by one of my jaded exes that “It won’t last.” He was told that I would dump him after seven years or so.

As you can see, he’s been living on borrowed time.

John argues that his time reset when we got married, and that his seven years wouldn’t be up until our seventh anniversary. If that were true, he’s still beating the odds. We’re at eight years now, so I’ve already tolerated his company for a year longer than promised.

I remind him of this often, that his seven years are up and he’d better be extra special nice to me or I’ll kick him to the curb. We often plan our divorce when we purchase big ticket items (I still say the TV is mine). Since we know it’s looming we figure we should plan ahead; it will save on lawyer costs down the road.

Our anniversary was last weekend. John and I planned a dinner out on Friday, and then a few games at the pool hall before crashing early so we could get up for our trip to Ohio on Saturday. John received a last minute work request though. Sister Toni needed some help setting up a projector for a chapel fund raiser. If it were ANYONE else, John would have said no. Toni’s a sweet-heart though, so he asked me if it would be alright if we stopped at the chapel on our way to dinner. I said sure, no problem, as long as I could give her crap for crashing my date.

So we went to the chapel and Toni met us in the foyer, thanking us profusely for coming to her aid. However, as we walked into the church it became very clear that I had been set up.


Waiting for us were a few of our close friends (thanks Lisa, for stopping me from swearing at John in the church), there to witness a renewal of our vows.

After I sputtered out a few incoherent things, I turned to John and said “You’re trying to reset your clock and buy more time aren’t you?” He admitted that yes, he was.

This whole thing came as a complete surprise to me. John and I don’t keep secrets from each other. We just can’t. It’s not that we have a transcendent relationship where we’re above lies and deceit, we both just suck at keeping secrets. So I was really shocked and amazed that he’d managed to pull this off without me having a clue that he was up to something.

The rat!

Anyway, John had written me a note summarizing our life together. He said he originally was going to say a little speech, but he figured he’d forget what he wanted to say when the moment came, so he wrote it down instead.


He’d had a friend of his (one of his favorite pinup girls) make a hair piece for me…


and Lisa had a bouquet of seven roses for me to carry down the aisle.


John even found the song that was played at our first wedding for our procession.

Toni officiated, because she was in on it from the beginning.



And I only had to kick John once to get him to vow to forsake all others before me. He’s been faithful for eleven years, he just took a moment to weigh his options.


A big surprise for me was that John had gotten us a new matching wedding set. Apparently my rotten daughter Alexi had helped him pick out the rings and never leaked a word to me about it. I’ve since grounded her out of spite.


The little one there is Lucas, our friend David’s son. He acted as an impromptu ring bearer.


And then John got to kiss me in a church, the highlight of his day.



It was all very sweet, and yes, I was really surprised. John’s like that though, just when I think I have him pegged, he surprises me. That’s probably why I haven’t dumped him yet. Life is always interesting when he’s in the room.

He did give me the option to say no, but I’m crazy not insane. I know how good I have it. I’ll keep him around seven more years… and then we’ll see what happens. :D


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Zathras warned Zathras, but Zathras never listened to Zathras.

Guess what I got for Valentines day!

A pincushion with legs?

A walking cactus?

A miniature porcupine?

No, a Hedgehog!


Meet Zathras, the cutest, smartest, hedgehog in the world! (OK, so I’m biased.)

You’re probably wondering how I came to be in possession of this spiky little guy. Frankly, I’m not really sure how it happened myself. Let’s just say that my husband’s mind is a strange and mysterious place. One never knows what one may encounter there, and never questions the wonders to behold.

Basically, here’s how it went down… One day a couple of weeks ago I was reading through my blog feeds, and one of the animal blogs I check out had a hedgehog post (it may have been Cute Overload or it could have been I Can Has Cheezburger?). I was chatting with John on-line while reading, and idly typed to him, “Can I have a hedgehog?”

Now, I ask John for stuff all of the time, usually he laughs at me, but one never knows (see above) so I keep asking anyway.

Much to my surprise he said “Ok, how about for a Valentines present.” Or something along those lines, I’m not going back into my chat log to get his exact wording. Anyway, I just about fell off my chair. Did he say yes?!?!? He later explained to me that I’ve asked for a hedgehog more than once over the years, and since it was a continuing request he figured I wasn’t going to loose interest anytime soon.

So off we went in search of a hedgehog, but it seems that they’re not easy to find in Wisconsin during the middle of winter. None were up for adoption at rescue shelters, no pet stores had any, and all the breeders in a two hour radius had waiting lists that wouldn’t start getting filled until May. I figured I was out of luck.

Then John sends me a link for a breeder in Ohio. Wait, Ohio? That’s three states over, and hedgehogs don’t ship UPS. Is he insane? Apparently he is, but it’s the good kind of crazy so I won’t be pulling out the backwards jacket yet.

On Valentines day we drove four (yes, that’s right 4) hours in one direction to adopt our little ball of quills.


His name is Zathras and did I mention that he’s the cutest, smartest, hedgehog in the world? Oh, right…

He’s just a baby, not even two months old, and just was barely able to leave his mother when we got him. Still, he’s very outgoing and has made a great transition into his new home. As for smart… He was litter box trained in just a couple of days. Not too shabby for a guy who has a brain no bigger than my thumbnail!

We named him Zathras after a character from Babylon 5. John and I met because of that show, so it seemed a fitting tribute on Valentines day. Plus, he just looks like a Zathras.


So from now on you’ll be getting posts on his progress along with my snakes. I think it’s a good addition to the blog, don’t you? :D