Tuesday, July 15, 2008


I've finally opened the Etsy shop!


Saturday, June 21, 2008

When will this madness end?

This has been an ongoing drama for the past two weeks...

We feed stray and feral cats in our neighbourhood. We have a small food bowl set up on the back porch where it is accessible to cats passing through. As of last count, we have 6 cats consistently eating from it, only one of which do we have any "relationship" with, the others are simply to skittish to approach. This one cat allows us to pet her, she comes and sits in our laps when we're in the gazebo, she drinks from our water ponds, she suns on our driveway... she can hang around for hours at a time. Sometimes in the middle of a rain storm I'll glance out the window and see her hunkered down on our back porch, other days (rain or shine) she'll be passed out in one of the lawn chairs we have set up in the gazebo. In short, she has become a fixture of sorts, and we are very attached to her! : )
But other critters are eating from the bowl as well, which was not a problem at first. Squirrels, birds, slugs, snails, reptiles etc. The birds have progressively (slowly, but progressively nonetheless) started causing trouble. The mourning doves and Everett birds (not sure what they're real name is, we always call them Everett birds... but that's another story for another time...) weren't so bad at first, they nibbled a little, usually taking only one piece at a time. But the finches were a huge pain in the neck... bitty birds equals bitty food, right? Their solution? To take all of the food out of the bowl, piece by piece, and fling it across the porch until they find a piece small enough. My every morning began with picking all the food off the porch and putting it back in the bowl for the cats.
And then the grackles showed up. They are absolute pigs, they come swaggering up onto the porch, cramming 5-7 pieces of food in their beaks, and fly off. Sometimes the same grackle will come back repeatedly. As you can imagine, we began going through food much quicker. Our solution was to move the food bowl into the gazebo for a few days until the grackles gave up... in the gazebo, all of the cats would be able to find it, but the birds would be less likely to go to the trouble of finding the passage through the mosquito netting (we leave a small section of the netting unzipped). Sooooo, the next morning I come out and there's a bird stuck in there. I unzipped the netting, let it out, and refilled the bowl. Less than an hour later, I pass by the window, glance out, and there is another bird in there!
After the third bird, I tried liberally sprinkling bird seed in a large mound near the gate, away from the gazebo. After the fourth bird, I put a small pile of bird seed in front of the gazebo. After the fifth bird, I placed a large boulder in front of the gazebo. After the sixth bird, I pushed the boulder closer to the gazebo, and pulled the zipper further down.
The next day, we were out of ideas, and just kept letting birds out. On the third day, we simply could not take it any longer, and one of the feral cats was unable to locate the food bowl, so we put it back on the porch. A few days ago, we began leaving an oversized plastic lid upside-down on top of the bowl, where the cats could easily push it off, but the birds were not smart enough. Unfortunately, this confused the cats too much, but fortunately this seemed to have discouraged the birds, and after we'd taken it off they'd been leaving the bowl alone... until today.
This Morning , I step outside to visit with the cat, and there are a bunch of Everett birds dive-bombing her!!! >: [ Apparently they have reverted to territorialism (yes, I know this is not a real word). I spent the greater part of the morning spraying them with a squirt-bottle. They finally quit caring, and so I put out a saucer full of birdseed. But now, apparently they don't want any stinking bird seed, they want catfood! I repeat: When will this madness end?

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Western New York! PART 1

So, I've been sick for the past two weeks, overlapping by one week with my two week vacation to Buffalo, New York. Here are some photos from Niagara Falls:

We started out around noon driving around an looking at some lighthouses (will post photos later), then headed on over to Niagara Falls. Here you can see the mist from the falls at a distance:
Through the Car Window

Before we went over to the park, we had lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe (I picked up a cute T-Shirt in the gift shop). After lunch, we made our way over to the park and to the falls. Here are some preliminary ripples along the bank of the Niagra River:

The rapids as we get closer to the falls were amazing... this is only the second time I remember ever being near a waterfall, and the first was (in my opinion) not nearly as impressive:

Pretty cool, huh?
Rapids at Niagara Falls

And the drop:

Here you can see the falls themselves, at last:
The Falls Side View

And a little woodchuck right up near the falls:


I snapped this shot from the observation deck:
The Falls From the Observation Deck2

A little bit extreme in my opinion:
Going to Extremes...

This is my favourite shot, I can honestly say that Niagara Falls is one of the most amazing things I've ever seen in my life:
The Falls From Below- Full Size

The Maid of the Mist boat tour:
Maid of the Mist Boat Tour

Modern Ashtray


The Falls again:
The Falls From Below

I took nearly 400 photos on this trip, so stay tuned for more! : )

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Always Check Your Receipts!

So, we went to _____ on Friday, and found some nice boxes and a tube of wrapping paper (vintage beer and ale label print). Two of the boxes were of similar design, but one was slightly larger than the other. The smaller one was marked down from $8 to $3, and the larger from $9 to $3. When I get up to the counter, everything rings up at the marked price except the larger box which comes up at $4, so the cashier calls the manager up. The manager goes over it a couple of times, then loudly comments on the fact that it is larger than the other box. Um, what does the one box have to do with the other? Are they not two separate objects? She then proceeds to inform me that the box should have been marked down to $4, and the $3 label was incorrect. I considered it, was it really worth saving just the $1? After a brief pause, I decided that the money had nothing to do with it. It was strictly a matter of principle. The label said $3, I think I should have gotten it for $3. I stated as much, and with many dark looks, they acquiesced. I'm afraid I tend to be a bit of a push-over in areas like this, so I was quite pleased with myself as I marched out of the store with my finds. I should have looked at the receipt.
That afternoon, I'm going over receipts and I pull out the one for this store. I purchased four items all total, and I notice that the receipt lists five. Much to my annoyance, I found that the cashier had not removed the item from the first time she rang it up. So in addition to paying the $3 for the box, I had also payed the $4 it originally range up at! I was so furious... as paranoid as it sounds, I know she did it on purpose.
So, next day we had to go back down to the store. Fortunately, I did manage to get my money back with little dispute.

Moral of the story, don't forget to check your receipts. : /

Monday, April 28, 2008

Gator Pics.

I love gators.

Other Gator

Second Gator:
Gator Full Length

Someone dropped a flower in the water:
Gator Swimming Towards Flower 1 of 2

He annihilates it:
Gator Ripping Up Flower 2 of 2

And the ducks look on, unperturbed:

You can see more photos here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/paperbouquet/sets/72157604343957368/

Saturday, April 26, 2008


Your Vocabulary Score: A

Congratulations on your multifarious vocabulary!

You must be quite an erudite person.

I love blogthings.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Have you heard...

... About the "Mad Crafter's Tea Party"? The Altered Art Appreciation Society on Flickr is holding a global tea party from the 12th to 14th of April for all artists to participate. Check out the Altered Art Appreciation Society's blog here for details: http://www.alteredartsociety.blogspot.com/.