It's been a week, you know? Good time for some cats. Oh look another cat. Hi, other cat. Nothing but cats. Okay, cat and one dog. Okay, dog and other cat. Okay, two kids, too. And that's all I've got. We're off to the beach for a bit and I've barely started packing, unless you count the kids' suitcase that I never unpacked after their week with the grandparents. That's good to go, because FORESIGHT. And EPIC LAZINESS. Which I always knew would pay off at some point, in one small way or another. Read more →


We picked the boys up on Saturday, with Beau as a reluctant and extremely barfy passenger. Which was great because obviously Jason had SO much fun cleaning the minivan the day before, he couldn't wait to do it again. He did much, much better on the ride home, thanks to being reunited with his boys. And/or because he realized that we weren't systematically shipping family members off, one by one, until only the cats remained. The boys immediately made a beeline to Noah's new room, and it went over even better than I hoped -- I worried Noah's expectations would be higher than what I managed to deliver on, but in his exact words: "This room is AMAZING. Thank you guys!" /high fives self //smacks ear by accident For point of reference, here is a very bad, very glare-y before photo taken while we were prepping to paint: Biggest challenges included finding a shade of paint that somewhat downplayed the purple carpet, sanding down approximately four dozen handpainted daisies, and working around a towering inferno of toys, including an incredibly large replica of the Ghostbusters headquarters that Noah built on his own (aka NOT the skullfuckingly expensive set) and BEGGED... Read more →


This post is sponsored by Wisdom Panel® Canine DNA Tests. Beau's original adoption listing said he was a mix of Miniature Schnauzer and Yorkshire Terrier. We have no idea if his owners gave that description when they surrendered him to the shelter, or if it was just a guess made by a vet or the rescue group or what. We do know that the "Schnauzer" part seemed to mostly be based on his pre-haircut appearance, because once his fur was groomed it was clear his actual snout wasn't all that Schnauzer-like after all. His foster mom agreed, and added her personal guess of terrier breeds mixed with wire-haired Dachshund, based on his legs and feet. Our vet said he was all terrier: Yorkie, Jack Russell, Cairn, and probably a good smattering of others. When I would play around with online tools and surveys based on his physical appearance, I would get wildly weird results, like Pomeranian and Shih Tzu. The guessing game can be fun at first, but also hugely frustrating. What ARE you, dog? I've been sent photos of several Beau doppelgangers from all over the country -- crazy identical pups, right down to eyebrow coloring and the flippy... Read more →


One very notable difference between the New Pets vs. The Ones I Still Can't Really Talk About Without Getting Weird is how many stupid nicknames they have. Although "nicknames" isn't really correct, since I keep taking their existing one-syllable names and making them longer. I'm a blabbering baby talk idiot, all of a sudden. Max was always just "Max." One time Jason overheard me call him "Maxi" and was like, ew, stop that, he's not a menstrual product. Ceiba was occasionally called Ceibs (pronounced Saybs) or Ceiby (rhymes with Baby), and I sometimes called her Girly. But even that comes NOWHERE close to the number of ridiculous names I've caught myself using lately. For example, in the past 24 hours, I have called my pets all of the following: BEAU: Beau Dameron (cuz obvs that's his full name) BoBo BoBear Bowie BowieBo Flippy Flops Scruffy McShugs (he needs a haircut) Potato (I have no idea) FINN: Finnie FinnFinn FinnieFinn FinnieFinnFinn (STOP) Finnster Purrmaster Flash (STOP EVEN MORE) Bitey (if you stop petting him before his liking you will be gently nibbled on) Silver Fox REY: ReyRey Reybie (realized once I said it that it sounded like "Rabies" and have since... Read more →


Thanks to all the snow days, Noah and Ezra's school added a full extra week to the year. However, I am officially calling foul on this extra week, because it appears to be utter bullshit. There's no homework, band practice or library visits. Desks were thoroughly emptied on Monday. Every notebook, workbook, and folder already came home. Even Noah's paper textbook covers are sitting in the pile, along with all their crayons and pencils. We live close enough to the school that I can hear playground noise practically non-stop. When I asked Ezra what he was even DOING at school I got a convoluted report of extra story time, movies and building a fort out of empty boxes in the art room. Noah simply shrugged and said, "Nothing." Which, fine! It's like a week of daycare, for free! But honestly I think we'd all just rather sleep in a little bit and not have to worry about finding clean shirts and matching socks and packing lunches even though today and tomorrow are HALF DAYS and yet lunch still happens at school and that will never make sense to me. (At least Ezra agreed to buy his lunch and use up... Read more →


It's Friday! Seems like a good day to laze out and just post random photos of my pets. Especially since there's currently a tail on my keyboard and a butt on my mouse. The cats have settled in, I'm happy to report. They have stopped hiding completely and now join Beau as a little troupe of shadows who follow me around all day, demanding attention, food, and lap real estate. I've never had two cats or littermates before, and it's been FOREVER since we had a cat that still acted as kitten-like as these two, so they are filling our lives with much hilarity and pratfalls. Catfalls? Ew, stop that, self. Miss Rey has managed to not fall out of anymore windows, but consistently finds other trouble to get herself into, like getting her ass stuck in an ottoman or locked in closets or falling into the toilet because she's so mesmerized by the flushing. True storiez. Despite her spectacular Queen Bitch Cat facial expressions, there's really no deliberate naughtiness or evil behind all her mischief. It's more like she's just kind of a klutzy airhead who doesn't understand how life works. (Oh my God, she's me.) She's...not the smartest... Read more →


As a generally optimistic person (or just a naive dumbass), I naturally assumed that there was nowhere to go but up after the Monday morning clusterfuck. And yet I was in no way surprised when Tuesday morning kicked off promptly with Ike projectile vomiting at the breakfast table. I'd just smugly finished packing his bag for the day (INCLUDING HIS LUNCH GO ME) and turned around just to see it happen. An entire cup of milk, all over his nice clean bathing suit and matching(!) swim shirt, his chair, the floor, just everywhere. And so instead of a second day of summer camp -- a precious day, one of only 10 days I'd ponied up for childcare for him all summer -- Ike spent the morning getting a bath and ushered back to bed. Then he voluntarily relocated to the floor outside the bathroom after the next wave hit him 20 minutes later. And that was our morning. By mid-afternoon he'd perked up enough to sip water and watch some Super Why, then had a little dry cereal and another nap. By dinnertime he was running around like a lunatic all I WANT TACOS AND CANDY I'M STARVING. So. He... Read more →


So I was going to write about how I had to take Beau to the vet yesterday because he got an (admittedly much-deserved) swat to his eyeball from one of the cats, but then that pet antic got roundly and solidly out-antic-ed today. Sorry, Beau, your eyeball will be just fine, and you gotta step up your trouble-making game. I was out back playing with Beau this morning. While inspecting all my newly-planted berry bushes and strawberry plants (they're not dead yet!), I suddenly heard a weird, scratchity-scrambling type noise coming from an...uppish area. It was quite loud and strange. I first looked up at the deck in confusion, then my peripheral vision caught sight of something dropping off the side of the house. It took my brain multiple seconds to process what, exactly, was falling to the ground. Roof shingle? Loose siding? Part of the gutter? No. It was a cat. A cat just fell out of my house. Specifically, it was Rey, tumbling out of my bedroom window. Yes, that one. So the previous homeowners did that real estate staging thing where you remove screens from windows to make everything look brighter or cleaner or whatever the hell... Read more →


I found this in the back of the refrigerator today. Okay, that's kind of a fib. I've known it's been there for awhile. Probably since the day after Max died. I just...couldn't deal with it, so it slowly got pushed further and further back. Out of sight, out of mind. After he was gone, I hastily dumped out the litter and scrubbed the evidence of his final decline out of the carpets in our bedroom. I boxed up his unopened food for the shelter and added Puppy and a tuft of his fur to the memory box we'd prepared for Ceiba. But this stupid, half-empty can of food? Hey man, it's a process. Don't rush me. Yesterday I created two separate GoFundMe campaigns to raise a little money for the two animal rescues we adopted from -- Tara's House and Kitties & Pitties. A couple Facebook friends had suggested something like that after Ceiba died, or asked where I'd like donations be made in her name. I remember thinking that was a good idea, but much like the can of cat food, couldn't really deal with actually doing anything about it at the time. The Maximillian Thunderdome Memorial Fund The... Read more →


At some point last night, both cats (now mostly officially known as Finnie and ReyRey, shutup) emerged from underneath our bed and decided it was time for a takeover. OF PERSONALITY. They played, they nuzzled, they cuddled, they had some cautious interactions with Beau, and settled down to sleep between Jason and I while we watched TV in bed. They let us give them each a dose of medicine and amazingly did not seem to hate and/or plot our demise afterwards. They then woke me up at 5 a.m. with a folie à deux-style catfit, racing around at top speed, meowing and tumbling and wrestling with each other (and my hair). They're still really skittish around Beau, who to be fair, is being a total spaz and can't seem to resist the urge to charge right at them -- totally playful, well-meaning and with tail wagging -- but understandably the cats are still like AW HELLLL NAH. (Also he keeps stealing their food, which certainly isn't winning him any points in the Not Super Annoying category.) The eye of ReyRey, which changes from bright green to yellow to orange, depending on the light. Rey did work up the nerve to... Read more →