Thursday, November 30, 2006

Lion Cut

Trixie and Sadie now sport lion cuts.

They were in desperate need of grooming, through our pet sitters I found a world class pet groomer.

He was a slight man from Brazil who also judges cat shows around the globe.

He spent almost 4 hours making the girls beautiful.

(I am still working on taking photos - I'll post them as soon as possible.)

I'm Thankful for the California Sunshine

A week long trip back home to California was a welcome way to spend Thanksgiving.

It was late Friday night when we arrived in Burbank. The 3 hour drive to Pismo was not making either one of us happy - but the shiny red convertible that Hertz so kindly upgraded us too definitely made the drive a little better. I was OK until about 2.5 hours into it - at that point I just wanted to be at the hotel. MomO was right, there was patchy fog driving up the coast it made the drive a little slower than anticipated. At least there was no traffic.

We were staying at the Sea Crest Hotel. We could hear the ocean from our room, but it wasn't until the morning that we saw our 180 degree ocean view! White water and palm trees painted the perfect picture off of our balcony. The Sea Crest is a real bargain, ocean view rooms with a large balcony were just over $100/night off season and about $20 more during peak season. The photo is the view from our room - imagine waking up to that every morning, it was hard to check-out.
In Pismo we ate plenty of Mexican food (Californian type Mexican food is very hard to find in NYC), enjoyed Mo's bar-be-que, and stuffed ourselves at F. McClintocks. F. McClintocks is a local steakhouse that features large portions and an amazing array of side dishes with every meal. The ranch potatoes are the best! Michael generously paid for dinner for everyone.
Aside from eating, we also enjoyed a wedding...some sunset photos from the wedding:
Michael and KO, notice Michael's tie - he really wanted to be at the game. He was so happy when USC won!
Jenn and Chris, Michael's sister and her boyfriend. His dad is a vet - I wish I lived closer to them! Chris is one of those rare people who enjoys his job and likes going to work everyday....hmmm. (Anyone from IOM reading this - of course I love my job and going to work everyday, I mean who doesn't?!)
KO and Michael's family.
Right up the road from Pismo, in Shell Beach, we visited the most bountiful tide pools I have ever seen in nature (Sea World tide pools don't count). The tide pools were filled with star fish in every shape and color, brilliant sea anemones, little crabs, and tons of barnacles.
Can you see all of the starfish on the rocks?
This sea anemone was bright, bright purple and green.
Wide view of the tide pools, the tide was way out - so we had lots of places to look for tide pool creatures.
More starfish, they almost look like fall leaves.
KO and MW at the tide pools.
Our last night in Pismo we watching a spectaular sunset. I rate it one of my top 3 sunsets ever. The sky was filled with color, pinks and purples and gold with the ocean reflecting all of the colors. Dophins decided to put on a show for us - they were jumping out of the water and playing right in the middle of it all.
The sky was really this beautiful and this colorful.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Michael and his dad.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Michael's parents.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Leaving Pismo we made a quick stop in Solvang - I needed my Dutch pastry fix. I loaded up on butter cookies and my favorite pastry the Dutch waffle. The Dutch waffle is two long pieces of flaky sugar coated pastry filled with whip cream and raspberry jam. One bite and you are hooked.

The rest of vacation was spent with the O family in San Bernardino. We had a huge home made Thanksgiving dinner with all the trimmings. The weather was sunny and warm. Friday morning Mom and I managed to find a few great deals shopping.

As always vacation is too short - but it's always nice to be home. Now I feel like I am going home no matter which way I fly.

Friday, November 17, 2006

3 Quick Cat Stories

Wednesday 11/15/2006
Sadie becomes the first cat to adventure outside of the apartment door. She was waiting by the door when I got back from the grocery store. She has been doing that quite a bit - I decided it was time to let her look around the corner. Next thing I know she darts down the hallway! To see Sadie run is quite a sight, she just doesn't run very often. My hand were full (of course), I dropped all the bags inside and luckily she heard something and came running back inside, I didn't have to chase her through the building. She went all the way down our hallway to the next set of stairs - quite a distance.

Thursday 11/16/06
Beckham jumped up on the couch to snuggle with Michael. He curled up next to him and then moved to his lap. An unprecedented move for the typically twitchy tabby.

Friday 11/17/06
Roxy and Beckham come face to face with a squirrel. Early in the morning both Roxy and Beckham were looking out the window, a squirrel came along and went right up to them. The squirrel had his paws on the glass and was trying to sniff the kitties and they were trying to sniff at him. It was so cute.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Leaf Peeping

Last weekend Michael and I went upstate and looked at the fall colors. For just one night out of the city it felt like we were gone for a week. We took a train about 1/2 north to White Plains, from there we rented a car and drove about another 1 1/2 hours north. Our base of opeation was Fishkill, New York. We took all kinds of scenic routes. We drove through Peekskill (home of the Eastland School for Girls) and Sleepy Hollow. We were on lots of small two lane roads that had amazing tree canopies.

A highlight of the trip was an accidental find. I made an incorrect turn and we found a park - well parking was $6 and it was really crowded and the lodge wasn't open so I couldn't make a needed pitstop. We turned around and decided to visit West Point. On the way to West Point we saw a sign for Fort Montgomery. Fort Montgomery had a brand new visitor center with very nice restrooms, no pay for parking and it wasn't crowded! Fort Montgomery has Revolutionary War ruins. It has great hiking trails and the trees were full of color. I love it when you make a great find by accident (just call me Columbus - well if I was Columbus I would rename the site ;-)

Sunday we visted Barton Orchards. They are home to a huge corn field maze and tasty cider doughnuts. The maze was awesome. They had word and picture clues hidden in the maze and to solve the 'big' puzzle you had to find the clues.

Navigating the maze makes you hungry.

Can you find Michael in the corn maze?
Sunday was also the drive through Sleepy Hollow. It was exactly how it should look, dead tree canopies and a huge cemetary. It was almost Halloween so there were lots of local events with kids in costume. My favorite was the child dressed as a goat - why be a pirate when you can be a goat?

It was a great weekend and the kitties seemed to survive one night alone (but they might not share that opinion).

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Project Runway Tour

One of my first weekends in NYC was spent following the footsteps of Project Runway (hit Bravo reality series).

First stop:

Macy's for a look at all of the winning outfits.

Uli's design was the latest win. It was more beautiful in person. On t.v. you can't see the details of the seaming or the beading.

Next stop:

Mood. The designer fabric store. The store was crowded with fabrics and people. I don't know how a designer could ever find fabric in there. First there were so many choices and second it seems like there was no order - the fabric was all mixed together. There were some beautiful prints and some expensive fabric. Some of the bolts were marked $80/yard.

After Mood it was time for the Atlas apartments:

Final stop: Parson's New School for Design

There were a couple of design students out front, I wanted to ask if they knew Tim Gunn - but I was already not cool enough to be standing there, asking about Tim would just be too much.

I still want to visit Emitt's store in SoHo and the Lee's Craft Store. We walked through the flower district, but it was a let down.

The highlight of the trip was seeing the dresses in the Macy's window. There were so many people excited to see the dresses, it was great. It was also really hard not to correct people when they incorrectly identified a dress.




3 Years Old

Silver Tabby

Likes: Playing soccer, Joey, wrestling with Roxy, sleeping in a tiny ball on top of someone

Dislikes: crunchy food, all humans

Beckham was rescued from the same house as Roxy, they both lost their home to the wildfire that destroyed many homes in 2003. He is a very strange cat with a very sensitive stomach. He makes all kinds of strange noises when he eats.

Beckham is incredibly handsome and likes to play soccer - that is why he was named after the fabulously handsome soccer player David Beckham. He has an amazing creamy white belly that begs to be touched, but he doesn't let that happen very often.


6 years old
Black, Domestic Short Hair

Likes: Pounce, crunchies, playing with the cat dancer, looking out the window, tail catching

Dislikes: Chandler, non-crunchy food, the street sweeper

Roxy was the scout cat for NYC. She came out a month early and had a month alone in the apartment with Michael. This was probably the best month of her life. She had two litter boxes all to herself, a never ending bowl of crunchies that was freshened twice a day, a nice bowl of NYC tap water, grooming, playing, Pounce, and catnip every day.

Roxy was a rescue kitty. She lost her home during the wildfire of 2003. When she is with other cats she just sort of hangs out by herself. When she lived with Michael she was by his side all the time. She had 'her' side of the bed and slept with him every night, she would curl up and sleep in his lap and when he would come home for the day she was a chatterbox. With the rest of the cats in the apartment now, she is more outgoing than she was in Encinitas but not the same as she was during the magical month of September 2006.


12 years old
Black, Domestic Medium Hair

Likes: Food, Blackjack, Food, Giving Love, Food, Snuggling, Food, Grooming, Food

Dislikes: Moving

Sadie and Trixie are sisters. Sadie is very sweet - she is a lap cat, always looking for someone to cuddle up with for some grooming or petting. Sadie loves Blackjack - even though he doesn't always appreciate her affections.

When Sadie was just a kitten she jumped on a dresser with a lit candle, as she turned to jump off the dresser her tail caught on fire. It was just a little bit of burnt fur, no permanent damage!

When we lived in Solana Beach I used to put up a cat Christmas Tree. It was a fake tree that was decorated with crinkle shreds, yarn, and lots of cat toys. Every morning the cat Christmas Tree would be knocked over - Sadie would get in the branches and play for hours.

Sadie is also a calendar model. She was Miss December in the Qualcomm cats calendar of 2000.

Sadie has tufts on her ears, that is how to tell her apart from Trixie.


12 years old
Black, Domestic Long Hair

Likes: Nothing

Dislikes: Using the litter box

Trixie and Sadie are sisters. They have been with me since they were kittens. I brought them home to San Diego in one carrier and they looked like a two headed cat. When I brought them home our front door lock was broken and we had to climb in the front window - maybe that gave Trixie a bad start in life.

Trixie is a very beautiful cat - but with beauty comes pain. She was probably meant to be an only cat for a very wealthy older woman who could dote and her and provide her with the lifestyle she deserves.