About Me

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Pennsylvania, United States
What changes hath time wrought...mostly a different hair-color, a few wrinkles and loss of short-term memory.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Rosy & Frank

Rosy is getting the once-over by Jinx and Jax. We now know we had a Teddy Bear Hamster, aka long-haired hamster. That's a bit of a misnomer because Rosy and Hunley only had PATCHES of long hair. Rosy is slowly warming to her new life outside the pet store. She is so skittish, but, I vaguely remember Hunley acting similarly. She's tough to catch inside her cage and once you have her you have to hold tight or she'll leap free! Jake and I were sitting on the floor with her the first day she was here and she kept making these ghastly sounds! It was a cross between hiss/squeak/grunt. Very odd. Jake likes to tell people about these sounds and even imitates her. She hasn't made them again. She spends her time in her cage (upper-level) near her tube entrance and will spend her time wedged in there whenever people are watching her. The first time she did that I thought she was stuck! I found something to gently nudge her out. Maybe it's a female hamster thing. Hunley never did that. I think Hunley finally realized he had it good here and never tried to escape. I think Rosy would make a run for freedom if given the opportunity. She spends a lot of time on the wheel. She's significantly larger than the Hunster and makes so much noise when she runs. I put a towel under her home to try and dampen the sound! She's getting it warmed up right now!

And here is Frank the Snowman. Not sure why the kids named the hamster Rosy or the snowman Frank? But our days for snowman-building are numbered (I hope). I like the ears Jake added. It made me think of the creature on the Goonies movie. I can't think of his name. It's right on the tip of my tongue.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Academy Awards vs. Disney on Ice

Not having been to a movie theater for several years to see a film rated below G you would think I'd have no interest in the Academy Awards. But I do like to see the stars, not being hounded by paparazzi, in the way we like to think of our stars: glamorous, humble, and just a tad anxious. I won't mention fashion because it annoys me how nasty people can be about a simple, yes SIMPLE, piece of clothing. This is all I will say: if it looks good on you wear it. I'd like to add "and it's comfortable" because some of those outfits look downright painful to wear. But I drift away from my point: My husband and I and two kids had been in Erie, PA to see Disney on Ice at 2pm. My children are 3 and 7. I procured the tickets after seeing an ad on TV showing Buzz Lightyear as one of the characters. My son, 3, LOVES Buzz. My daughter and I had been to a Disney ice show a few years ago and it was fantastic. It was so age appropriate. This show was a little disappointing. We have the movie "The Incredibles" and my kids liked it. It's not one they would choose to watch on a family movie night. The ice show has the Incredibles go to Disneyland hoping to blend in with all the normal people and of course they fail to do that. But the villain from the movie shows up and that's where my kids got confused. At the end of the show both of them wanted to know how the Incredibles beat Syndro (not even sure if that's his name). There were lots of booms and fire power. My son detests those two things. He does NOT enjoy the 4th of July. I wasn't bothered by the use of pyrotechnics to liven up the show just the lack of cohesion. AND this really ticked me off: the Incredibles needed their superhero outfits and the designer was at Disney and made some for them. That was the longest 10 minutes ever. Then when they were done and the family was trying them on they used "I'm Too Sexy for my Shirt" for the dad to skate/sashay around the rink! I made be prudish (see name of this blog) but I try to keep my kids from things I think are too mature for them. I LIKE that song and probably could sing the entire song. But for most of those kids there that is an inappropriate song. Almost every segment went on just a little too long.
So we got home (after purchasing the most adorable hamster. Pictures to be shown at a later date.) a little after 7pm. I fed the kids dinner and asked Tim if he would put them both to bed so I could watch the Oscars. He agreed to do so.
I love Hugh Jackman. He's got it all. But that show was unwatchable. That is the first time I ever changed the channel because segments ran too long. I watched a lot of Oliver Twist on PBS. (I should've taped it. IT was excellent.) The opening number of the Oscars was cute but just went on too long. I LOVED the idea that 5 previous winners were there to present the Oscar in the major acting categories. But then I saw the idea in action and felt like cringing. Some actors got tons of kudos from their "presenter/introducer" while others did not. I felt so bad I couldn't watch! The song and dance numbers went on way to long also. Why were there so many non-Academy Award winners involved? Robert Pattinson was sitting right behind Mickey Roarke! That was odd. I'm sure they were trying to lure viewers who were not overly interested in the actual show. But for me, I suppose, after seeing the same format for so many years anything new seems out-of-place. I may be in the minority but my favorite host was John Stewart. Steve Martin and Tina Fey were the best presenters. Get the comedians back as presenters and hosts. And if saving time is most important just have the presenters say the nominees names and the movie they're nominated for and then give them the trophy! And let them talk for however long they want. If they ramble get a big long shepherd's crook and gently pull them from the stage.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

R.I.P. Little Buddy

The Hunster
February 19, 2009
Hunley rallied during the night but was just not strong enough to get himself back to normal. For such a little creature he had such an adorable personality. We will miss him. We will replace him. Nonetheless he'll be missed.

The All Night Vigil

Well, I jinxed myself. After blogging about how much I love Hunley our hamster didn't I do something so supremely stupid: I left the poor thing in an exercise ball in our downstairs room all night. I realized what I'd done when I checked on him at 7:30am this morning and his nest was empty. I did not think he would be adversely affected. After all he'd been on his own for 3-4 months in my neighbors' (who previously owned Hunley) house. But we do not know how old he is or what the status of his health is. I put him in his nest and figured he just needed some rest. So we checked on him and placed fresh fruits and veggie pieces in his house, but didn't disturb him. Well, about 4:00 he came down his tube to the lower level where his food and water and litter cup are located. He was so wobbly and I don't think he was able to get any water. He climbed in his food dish and tried to eat and even did a little liquid business in his litter"box." We later cleaned his cage but he was just lethargic and uninterested in food. Veggies usually can wake him from his deepest sleep! But I thought maybe he's exhausted from his ordeal. And he's normally active at night. Not to worry. After the kids were asleep I checked on Hunley again. He was almost completely unresponsive. I tried rubbing him. I went on line and found out what information I could about hamster illnesses. Dehydration is a concern, so I found a dropper and tried to get some water in him. He just had no reaction to whatever I did to him. I placed him back in his cage, which he usually roots around in to get comfortable and again he remained in the same position I laid him in. I really thought this was the end. I found an empty box new checks came in and put some bedding in and placed Hunley on top of it. My husband was sure he saw him move. I said he was gone and it was a natural muscle reaction. One eye was open and one eye was closed, again with no visible movement. Tim (husband) got online and found specific info about giving the hamster Gatorade or Pedialyte to counteract the dehydration. It said to contact a vet to get detailed instructions for amounts to administer. It's now 11:30pm. Tim wanted to rush him TO the vet. I called the Franklin Animal Hospital and the doctor on call said there was nothing more they would do for him at the hospital. He suggested Gatorade every hour. He said you really couldn't give the hamster too much of that. But he also said giving him a couple drops of Kayro Syrup every two hours would give him some much-needed energy. So here we are at the beginning of the vigil. I don't really feel too tired, but in the scheme of things, it's still early- 12:49am. Luckily we have some violent weather making our house creak now. That would keep me up anyway.I'm just not too hopeful. But you never know, he may still have some life in him.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Mexican Eats

This summer I grew banana peppers and put them on everything. After using the last one by Oct. I thought my love affair was over. Then I saw a display of glass jars in Giant Eagle: Bell View Mild Pepper Rings. I've had them for a week and finally used them tonight in the BEST OMELET I EVER MADE! Here's the recipe:2 eggs, 1T milk, Kraft shredded Taco Cheese, onions, tomatoes, green pepper, and Bell View Mild Pepper Rings. I use a mini whisk to whip the eggs and milk and then add the other items. When the omelet is cooked top with Pace mild picante salsa and a dollop of sour cream.
I've been in such a Mexican mood lately. Too bad the rest of my family never cares to visit this foreign cuisine. Last week I made Chicken Tortilla Soup. If interested go to www.recipezaar.com and type in #4627 in the search box. After having this for dinner I had it for lunch everyday for a week. It's that good. The recipe ingredients are at the bottom of this blog. I'm not sure the 12oz. of cheese is necessary. The soup tasted good before that was added.

I've decided salsa makes a good occasional dinner. I think Peach Mango salsa is my favorite but Roasted black bean and corn salsa is VERY good, too. AND black beans are one of Women's Day's 52 Superfoods. I just tried Pinapple Mango Chipotle Salsa. It had a taste that was more like a BBQ sauce than salsa sauce. I think it's the chipotle-I just looked it up on dictionary.com- a pungent red pepper, often pickled and eaten as an appetizer or added to meat stews, sauces, etc. I think this was what was throwing the taste off.


Sunday, February 8, 2009


It amazes me sometimes how attached I've become to our pets. We used to have a beautiful cocker spaniel, Biff. Biff was about 15 years old when I had to put him to sleep. The last several months of his life were difficult. But it was still very emotional when the time came to do it. Then our cat died a year later of unknown causes. We did not replace Biff, but we did replace Newman the cat with two more kittens from the Humane Society: Jax and Jinx. We thoroughly enjoy our felines but Hunley the Hamster has just stolen my affection.

Hunley was given to us after his family, who lived across the street from us, sold their home and could not take Hunley, then known as Arnold, with them. We were told Hunley had just recently resurfaced after being missing for months and was living on cat food. Hunley looked very odd, cute, but weird. He has the strangest fur. We don't know if it's because of his previous adventures or if this is a trait of this type of hamster. He doesn't have thick fur just LONG fur. But the long fur is not all over his body: it only grows long in patches! For example, it was long just below his neck. Then that area looked normal but it was long on his back. Then his neck and back were normal and it was only long around his buttock area- making it look like he was wearing a grass/fur skirt.

Hunley came with a cage and an exercise ball. He loves that ball and goes all over the house. Since hamsters are nocturnal we usually put him in the ball after our kids go to bed. We close the child gate at the top of the stairs and let him roll. He almost always ends up in my daughter's bedroom. We always know where he is because the cats follow at a distance. That's the other thing that delights me about Hunley: he is NOT afraid of those cats!

A few times he has somehow opened the ball and ran free. We always know where he is because the cats are on high-alert! They don't get closer than two feet to the hamster, but they always know where his is- which has been lucky for us a few times.

Hunley got a fenced-in play-yard for Christmas. He also got some playground equipment. The cats sit, mesmerized, watching Hunley scamper around his "yard." Invariably, Hunley will scale the fence and escape. He ALWAYS escapes in the direction where the cats sit and the cats seem frightened and run away a few feet and sit and watch again. Hunley approaches again and the show repeats.

We like cutting up carrots and seeing how many he can stuff in his little cheeks. It's amazing how big those cheeks can stretch!

Hunley is a pretty good sport, too. We had a train to put around our Christmas tree and we had Hunley ride in the box car and freight car. He would ride in a circle then plot the best place to jump. He also rides well in Jake's dump truck.

Our cats are pretty good sports, too.