Saturday, December 31, 2005

I'm signing off to help Lyman prepare a lobster dinner for this New Year's eve. (Don't know why on that lobster. We've never done well before. We're trying something from Wolfgang Puck.)

Before I leave, I would like to thank all my readers, and extend special thanks to the Miss-Lou Veterinary Clinic, doctors and staff, for a small miracle.

Y'all have a happy new year. And that includes you, Gary Farber.

UPDATE: The lobster was quite tasty, but tough as usual.
Gary Farber posted on one of the oddest stories I've ever read here.

UPDATE: The Salon story that he cites appears to be a good and readable account.
Ahem. Good animal news from Sploid.
A morose little mop dog had surgery yesterday because his eye had popped out.

Dog people, tell me how often a little animal's eye just pops out.

I can't help but wonder if there was brutality involved. And how much brutality do vets see?

Friday, December 30, 2005

Given Lucy's vet bill, which comes within range of half a grand, Lucy, her family, and friends think she should be rechristened Lucinda Faberge Belle Gore. We all still call her Lucy.

And just for defense, Charlie becomes Charles III. He's a good kid. Call him Charlie, too.
All right! The x-ray showed that the egg is breaking up in a safe way. She should pass the fragments through her system without harm.

She had one more treatment. I watch and report tomorrow.
Traveling back and forth so much, I have discovered the value of the Pet Pocket I bought a while ago.

It's light and easy to carry, and the straps fit snugly over the passenger seat headrest.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Lucy and I and the vet rested today.

Still no egg. Another trip to the vet tomorrow, this time for another x-ray. That will be 7 of the past 10 days.

No go for the nest box for Mr. Charlie again.
The ersatz nestbox had to come out of the cage last night.

Lucy just ignored it, but it scared Charlie. He couldn't sleep with that ... that nest of snakes in his cage.

I've put it back in, and him with it, so he can learn that it won't come alive in the night and get him.

Now he'll probably just shred it to pieces.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

The first time I had seen enough sexual behavior from Lucy to question it was here. Lucy was barely two then, and unlikely to be bearing eggs.

Surely an egg couldn't be there that long. Physical problems have just come up recently. Otherwise she has seemed healthy. We do think it's the second egg that might have brought all this on.

UPDATE: Here's one from 3/3 of 2005. Her motions then were just the same as those on Saturday evening.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Still no egg.

Another visit to the vet, more fluids, more lubrication and stimulation.

This egg is going to be the most expensive thing since Faberge.
OK, since the "blogosphere" is supposed to be a hive of intelligent minds, help me, and let old Dan languish on St. Thomas.

My archives are open. I am looking for every reference to Lucy as a sexual critter. Key words might be: dance, arch, distend, Balinese, beautiful, etc.

I think this impacted egg might have been there a long time, and could be bound by tissues.

Surgery might be indicated, but not soon. She still has spotty lungs.

If you find anything, e-mail me at or put it in the comments.

Lucy and I will thank you. You'll especially like her thanks. She's beautiful. And she gives sweet kisses.

We're looking at after she was two, which would bring us to 2003.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Charlie is continuing hearty and hale.

Jason brought a girl over today and he wolf-whistled at her. She was giggling when she left. He's good.
What I didn't know about the vet, is that is the place where they take catchable raptors around here.

If you have a stunned hawk or falcon, or a screech owl, they go to Dr. Debbie.

The helper was telling me they haven't x-rayed many pet birds, but they do raptors.
Well, I'd be ticked, too, Lucy.

She does have another egg, very high up her tract.

The doc lubricated her tract and injected her with more fluids, with a needle about the size of a Cajun injector.

Pass that egg, Lucy, or we get to do it again tomorrow.

UPDATE: C'mon, Lucy. Another glimpse of that needle and I'll pass out.
Lucy is going to the vet for an x-ray today. She strained Saturday night as though she had another egg to lay.

Best to be sure.

Streetcar Suburb
You scored 21 out of 40 on urban-rural and 18 out of 40 land intensity.
People know you as: Grandmama
Quote: "Maybe the neighbor can lend us some sugar."

Your score indicates that you prefer a large metropolitan area to the wilderness and that you like your personal space. But you also enjoy interacting with other people occasionally and maybe, just maybe, on a rare occasion you even enjoy walking somewhere besides across the parking lot to your car.

You should live in a pre-World War II suburb. The kind populated by bungalow houses and charming little corner grocery stores. Just like grandma.

Examples of places you should live: Bethesda, MD; Evanston, IL

All Categories
Secluded Hideaway / Farm or Ranch / Small Town / Little City / Suburb / Streetcar Suburb / Rowhouse 'Hood / Downtown Loft

My test tracked 2 variables How you compared to other people your age and gender:

free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 53% on urban-rural

free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 39% on land intensity
Link: The Where Should You Live Test written by TwelveFloorsUp on Ok Cupid, home of the 32-Type Dating Test

I came by this by way of Mostly Cajun.

As I've said, I don't have a clue about formatting.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

I have said, and the Johnsons will back me up, I would rather have Lucy than a box of jewels.
It has been the best of Christmas days. Lucy is alive and well.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

I'm signing off for a day or two. Everyone have a Merry Christmas or other Happy Holiday.

Thank you for your prayers and thoughts for Lucy. I'm watching her like a hawk. Charlie, too, in case he should show something.

I gave her the morning dose of Flagyl. It's done with a syringe in the mouth. There's absolutely nothing wrong with her bite right now.

Friday, December 23, 2005

Lucy is home.

She looks great and is acting normally.

She will need Flagyl twice a day for a few days. Concentration on watery fruits and vegetables.

Something additional was wrong. She was egg-bound. First egg that I know of.
One toke over the line...

Here's an odd little story by way of Gut Rumbles.
Lucy is doing well. I am to call after lunch to see of she can come home today.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

At 4:30 this afternoon Lucy had eaten some food, and drunk some water, and successfully held those down. She had been up and down a bit. Her stool looked better.

Hold tight, baby.
The docs here say Lucy is better this morning. They recommend having her evaluated at LSU before the weekend.

It's just like Lucy to time things this way.

UPDATE: We went to see her. Her eyes are clear and she seems pretty alert, if pissed off.

I misunderstood the vet. They suggested taking Lucy to Baton Rouge in case there was some condition they couldn't test for here. As long as she improves here, I see no reason to stress her with travel and unfamiliar people. If she takes a sudden decline from her condition now, I imagine the case is hopeless anyway.

She's just a little bird. She doesn't need a lot of prayers and good thoughts, if you've any to spare.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Birds do that to you.

(By the way, at 6 she was doing better.)

Any source will tell you that they camouflage illness so they won't be attacked by predators or their own kind, or cut from the flock.

Lucy wasn't looking peaked. She was in fine feather. Her eyes were clear. She looked a tad lethargic this weekend, but I attributed it to some dreary weather. Yesterday, she preened Charlie's head twice (that should have been a tip-off, I guess).

She gave Lyman and me kisses when I put her in the cage last night. She crawled up her ladder this morning.

And was so weak she fell over the edge of her cage at about 3:30.

The doctors think she was squinting because she was in pain. That medication has taken effect now.

Hold tight, Lucy. Let the medicine work.

I told you I wasn't fit to be a human mother. What a neurotic!
Lucy doesn't feel good.

For a couple of hours, I watched her this morning. Her energy was low, her eyes weak, and she was standing horizontal on her perch. Then she began to vomit a time or two.

I immediately called the vet's office and we have just come back.

Dr. Debbie says she is congested. She gave her an injection and told me to report on her condition at 3 or so. If she gets worse between now and then, there will be tests.

Otherwise, we are scheduled for another injection tomorrow, whatever happens.

My pretty baby.

UPDATE: I'm worried sick. She can't keep her eyes open and she can't keep anything down. She moving about a bit, though.

UPDATE II: Lucy will stay at the vet's tonight for oxygen, fluids and further medication.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

We should put a "for sale" sign on the lawn and check into buying a nice barn.

My father-in-law walked in today with the morning paper, as he usually does, and dropped it on the bar.

He picked a satsuma up out of the big bowl.

"I'm the only one eating these oranges," he said.

Then he walked out the door on his way to play dominoes with his cronies. (Mind, he's 86.)

When I walked past the door to get another cup of coffee, I spied something on the floor.

Yep, satsuma peels.
Gotta love a guy who finishes peanut butter balls and puts them on the truck hood to cool. It's 34 degrees out there, cooler than the refrigerator.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Lucy & Charlie

This page needs a little color. Here is a gratuitous picture of Lucy and Charlie.

Sorry about the odd effects. The light here is not good.
How nice.
Joost Elffers needs a home page. I love his work with fresh fruits and vegetables, as in this book. I plan on collecting all of them.

Checking Google to see if there is such a thing (no), I ran across this book by Rex Barron. I might have to have it, too.

Did you grow up with kitchen stuff with fruit faces? I loved them, too.

I don't remember any in our house, but the dime stores were filled with them.

UPDATE: Hunh. The food artist is Saxton Freymann. Joost Elffers packaged the book.

UPDATE II: How Are You Peeling? and Food for Thought came in today.

UPDATE III: 26 four- and five-star reviews for How Are You Peeling?, and one who pans the book because it expresses negative emotions. Children have a lot of negative emotions. I have a good many, too. Therapy didn't work, I guess.
Kim, appearing in the comments in the post below, writes from Houston under the title Frothing at the Mouse, which is the best blog title since tequila mockingbird.

I've also added a link to my photos in the sidebar.

And one to Life at Full Volume where Sarah maintains sanity with twins and two older boys, and bakes prolifically, too.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

We have attended Charlie since his mishap.

And I did take him to the kitchen to help unload the dishwasher.

That's Lucy's job, and she is much distressed at the thought of being redundant.

Idiot child, one of the most glamorous creatures on the planet, is afraid of not being loved most.

At a moment, I was on elbows and knees, coaxing Lucy out from under the cage table, with Charlie standing on my spine.
I like Nat King Cole's Christmas album.
The boys' mother has called for this recipe from Lyman's grandmother, Mama Jean. You might as well have it, too, since I have to type anyway.

Angel Food Pie

4-1/2 T cornstarch
3/4 cup sugar
1-1/2 cup boiling water

3/8 t salt
3T sugar
3 egg whites

1 cup whipping cream
1-1/2 t vanilla

Mix cornstarch, 3/4 cup sugar and 1-1/2 cups boiling water in sauce pan.

Cook slowly until thick and clear. (10 or 12 minutes)

Beat egg whites with salt until very stiff. Add the 3 T sugar (one at a time) to egg whites.

Pour hot mixture over egg whites. Beat until smooth. Cool slightly.

Pour into pre-baked pie shell.

Top with whipped cream, nuts, and halved maraschino cherries (both red and green for the season). Add grated chocolate if desired.

Chill well.

UPDATE: To tell the truth, this doesn't look like much to me other than an excuse to eat maraschino cherries, which, when you're broke, is a rare opportunity.
About now (this evening) you would have caroling on the square in Jackson Square in New Orleans. You'd pick up a candle outside, then sing with the others gathered.

Even the hard-hearted cried.

UPDATE: No, it's Sunday.
Me and my babies,
We got the barometric blues ...

Friday, December 16, 2005

We had a little-boy trauma here today.

Charlie bonked his beak and broke the tip. There wasn't much blood, and he wasn't too much the worse for wear after spending some time on his papa's shoulder having his head rubbed.

It doesn't seem to have affected his eating, and the vet will be open until noon tomorrow if there is trouble.

Poor boisterous baby.
Moving along to something more tasteful, I am looking through Mexican cookbooks for a good enchilada recipe.

Lyman is no fan of Tex-Mex food, but I am, and so is my brother. We can gang up on him now!

Any recommendations?

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Bad taste alert

"Oh, my god..." was Lyman's reaction.

Never mind. That post from Marginal Revolution is gone. Perhaps a hoax? (Nope. People are reporting TypePad down. Back up now.)

No. Here's a link to a story about a new trend in intimate cosmetic surgery.

What will women pay for next?
All right, kids, I know this Laura Perilloux.

Go vote here.

I like Emily C.'s report. Especially when the 11-year-old writes that Number the Stars is "one of the best books I've ever read."
Yesterday was a perfect day to take for myself.

It rained three inches, steadily from morning to late in the night.

I read novels, napped and snacked all day, threw a tidbit to the birds every once in a while. They didn't care. They were as quiet as I was.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Charlie is ten months old today.

We think he is trying to break the language barrier.

He seems to be saying "Good bird."

Lucy never even tried that one. She might be a snot, but she's not a liar.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

But that's only money.

Our Wisconsin friend sent us a recipe, which Lyman prepared, for a peanut butter treat that has already developed a following here:


Cream 1/2 cup softened butter, 2 cups creamy peanut butter, and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla in large bowl. Add 3 cups confectioners' sugar by hand. Stir in 2-1/2 cups crisp rice cereal by hand. Dust hands with confectioners' sugar and shape walnut size balls.

In double boiler, melt 16 oz. milk chocolate and 12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips. Dip balls quickly, cover completely; remove to wax paper, let cool. Makes 6 dozen.
Well, my gosh. Our friends just won $750,000 from the Louisiana state lottery.

Merry Christmas, kids!

(They were married on January 13, too. I say, let them throw the anniversary party this year.)

Friday, December 09, 2005

That went smoothly. Dishes can be done along the rest of the day. Forty-two pieces to handwash.
It's a prettier day today, if cold. At least I can see to dust. And we can have a fire for lunch.
Here's an interesting recipe from Tony von Krag. Kitchen hand might like this one.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

From dawn to dusk, this is a dreary day.
Charlie is doing Lucy's voice now. She can't get a word in edgewise.
It's one cold-looking day out there, and I need to hose down the birds' tree. Brrrrr.
So I was piddling here, waiting for the dawn, and stumbled across this site courtesy of Fred First at Fragments from Floyd.

Insert any URL and see the text translated into ValleySpeak. Totally rad.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Hangin' around

We're busy, but Charlie's just hangin' around.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Preparations are underway here for the Christmas luncheon Friday, when the adults in the family gather.

The menu this year is simpler than it has been in years past: shrimp cocktail, salad, garlic bread, John Folse's recipe for spaghetti and meatballs, grilled zucchini, and apple-butter sweet-potato pie with whipped cream.

There's plenty of cleaning and straightening to do, and some mild decoration. And plenty of dishes to wash on Friday.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Charlie has taken his assignment of learning the LSU fight song seriously.

Congratulations, Georgia.

When Matt Flynn threw the interception last night to bring the score to 34-7, Charlie whistled his notes.

"Not now, Charlie," Lyman said.
Bill Quick of Daily Pundit has great gift ideas for the kitchen here.

We've spent much more money on the the kinds of items he suggests. Such buys!

Friday, December 02, 2005

As I was driving to the library, a little boy jumped off the schoolbus, crossed to his yard and turned a front-flip on the grass before he even took his backpack off.

Yikes. How would you like to have him for the weekend?

Library extension

Here is the area for the public library extension.

There were trees surrounding the square. Those on this side were cut. Maybe only two were cut. As Lyman says, they were planted too closely to begin with. Live oaks can have enormous canopies, but they need plenty of room.

At any rate, I feel a little sadness for those guys, but no anger. We have plenty of live oaks but only a small library.

They have poured some concrete slabs to the sides of the main building. I haven't seen the plans. Will they be outdoor public spaces? I'd like that.
I added hit stats today, and did a little cosmetic work here.

People seem to have such fun with referrer logs that I had to see.

We bought a new Sears Craftsman riding mower yesterday.

Lyman has been researching for a couple of years. This one was a good enough price with the features we wanted. No, it's not a Deere. But the kid who mowed lawns during his high school years used a Craftsman to do several yards a day without much trouble.

Merry Christmas, Janis. Merry Christmas, Lyman.

But we have a house with a whole roof and a lawn, so I should complain?

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Miss Francesca, it's a long story, but my brother is now the owner of a four-month-old male Yorkshire terrier named Presto.

We hope you'll be available for advice, if necessary.

UPDATE: That is one bouncing baby boy.



UPDATE: No satsumas.