Tuesday, January 31, 2006
Kathy, Ed's sister, has had squirrel trouble lately too. Look for the link over to the right to Kathy's blog. My friend Cheryl wrote this after reading my squirrel story. I thought it was really funny.
"I laughed because I could relate to you.....last year a squirrel got into my house through the fire place......and I had heard a noise and went out to look. I got all the way to the living room and looked in the dining room and there it was. I ran for cover to my bedroom and called my mother on her phone in the other bedroom. I knew that the Police and Animal control do nothing for you but I have a neighbor who loves animals. I called and she came over but for some reason could not unlock my deadbolt on the door. This left us screaming in the house still behind closed doors. I told my mother she had to run for it and Nancy would be at the front door. She said she couldn't because she was scared. I was scared worse I told her and she was the mother in this case. She grabbed the iron and newspapers and ran. As she approached the steps to go to the front door she screamed. She saw the creature. Opened the door and Nancy was right there holding the storm door open. She said the squirrel leaped one leap and it was out the door."
Doug sent me to this link to the Real Live Preacher website to read about a problem that he had with raccoons.
RLP has quite a website and I see his quotes on line a lot when looking for inspiration. But this story he wrote is hysterical. Doug now has raccoons in his apartment and has been working with an animal control guy for a while. He says they have trapped 5 but know there are still 3 of them living in his walls. He is terrified of them and I don't blame him. I think I would rather have a squirrel than raccoons!!
No matter how much I hate rodents, don't forget tomorrow morning is Rabbit, Rabbit Rabbit Day. (A rabbit is a rodent, right?)
Have a great Tuesday.
Saturday, January 28, 2006
Last Thursday night I arrived home about 9:30 after a very long day at work followed by a Finance Committee meeting. As I ascended the stairs there at the first landing I found a vase which had contained dried eucalyptus branches lying on the floor, its contents scattered. As I cautiously continued up the stairs, I noted the living room television was still there, so I probably didn't have a burglar, but the TV wasn't worth much, so I was not certain, really. Then as I reached the dining room I noticed items from a top shelf were on the floor, a mug the napkins still in their holder, a basket. It was as if someone had swept them from their shelf in one fell swoop, almost deliberately making a mess and enjoying it. There were other things out of place as well: some candles on the piano and a picture on a shelf. I though earthquake? Poltergeist? I noticed the back door was unlocked, closed, but not locked. Maybe just vandals but they might still be in my house. Or, even worse, maybe a murderer rapist lurking behind a door in another room in the darkened house ready to spring out at me. My cell phone was in the bedroom, having accidently left it at home that morning on the nightstand next to my cordless phone. I armed myself with my letter opener and began to move toward the phone in my bedroom. The hallway seemed undisturbed. Passing by the hall closet, I decided not to check in there until I had my phone. The bathroom looked fine, undisturbed, although the shower curtain seemed slightly awry. I entered my pitch dark bedroom and reached to turn on the lamp on the bureau. As I did that, I caught a glimpse of movement and realized that I was not alone.
Terrified, I let out a scream and slammed the door shut behind me. I ran to the kitchen to call the Police. In 2 rings they answered. "Hudson Police, this line is recorded. What is the nature of your call?" " Hello. My name is Sue Petersen. I live at XXXXXX Street and there is a squirrel in my bedroom!!!"
I can't tell you I was relieved that it was a squirrel and not a murderer, although, a reasonable person would of course think that. But until you have been held hostage in your own home by a fast moving, madly unpredictably jumping possibly rabid rodent, you should reserve judgement.
Animal Control returned my call after the female dispatcher from the Police Department, who took my call very seriously knowing that I was in danger, contacted her. Animal Control informed me that they were not allowed to enter the home and I should call a private professional. So I called the man who removes dead animals from our streets and rabid raccoons from chimneys in Sudbury where I work. His name is Dave. I had never met him, but I would become very close to him as the story unfolded. He answered the phone and listened to my plight. He told me that he wouldn't come out that night, but he would stay on the phone with me as long as I needed him to and that he would talk me through the process of eliminating the vermine from my bedroom.
"First," he said "you are going to go into the bedroom with attitude. Open the door with determination, walk in, shutting the door immediately behind you and then walk directly to your window and open it wide. When he realizes there is a way out, he will take it. But you have to be there to see him leave or you won't know for sure and you will not be able to sleep until he is gone."
"I can't go in there again!" said I. "Oh yes you can and you will." said he. "I will be here on the phone the whole time." Dave said to me in a comforting tone. "But that window really sticks." I said. "You are going to have to get it opened", he responded. And so, having exchanged letter opener for broom, I took a deep breath and began the battle royale. An hour and a half later after trying to flush him out with the broom and repeatedly being terrified as he madly dashed around me, behind me, in front of me from under the bed to under the bureau and back again, Dave admitted it was time to call it a night. It had been the most terrifying hour and a half of my life and I was glad to be putting up my broom for the night. Dave had been on the phone with me the entire time. He advised me to close the window and lock the varmint in for the night and go to sleep in the guest room. I was to go back in there the next morning while I got ready for work and then open the window again. Most likely he will be ready to leave. Dave wanted me to call him to let him know what happened.
My schedule was such that I had an extremely important meeting the next morning at 8:00 that I could not miss. So before I retired for the night, I called my son Bill and asked him to come over to help me after my meeting if I was unable to remove the squirrel before I left for work. "Sure.", said Bill, my brave young son.
My clothes were in my bedroom so in the morning I put on the only thing I had in the spare bedroom: Ed's big brown plaid fleece bathrobe and my boots. I got my broom and the phone, in case I got trapped in there and screwed up my courage and once again entered the room. But, there was no sign of him. I was beginning to wonder if he had left when I wasnt looking last night. I had been distracted once or twice while looking under the bed or bureau. With my broom in one hand, the phone in my pocket. I gingerly reached in my drawers and retrieve underwear, and other necessities for the day. I got dressed in the kitchen, as far away from the bedroom as I could get and went to my meeting.
When I got home, I bravely went back into the room, opened the window and stood against the door in the corner and waited. Nothing. But still, I needed Bill to help me move everything around to double check and make sure that he had left.
When Bill arrived, I got him a second broom and with new conviction and Bill's help, entered the room again. Bill bravely went right to task and looked under the bed. Nothing. Under the bureau. Nothing. But he looked down behind the bureau and jumped back with a shout. "I think I saw something" he said. "I might be crazy, but it just looked like 2 eyes looking straight up at me." I got a flash light. Bill hesitantly looked down behind the bureau again. Sure enough, flattened belly against the wall hands up like he was assuming the position, eyes staring straight up at Bill, was the squirrel. I believe Bill may have been as scared as I was. But, he didn't desert me. Bill would later describe what he saw: "It was really freaky. It looked like a giant dust bunny with eyes!"
We tried to flush that thing out again and again and he kept going from one thing to the other. At one point in his crazed state he brushed up against Bill and that freaked him out...Bill, not the squirrel. Dave had told me not to let Bill handle it because if he got scratched or anything the protocol was to have those rabies shots we have all heard about. So, that knowledge was a little disturbing. Anyway, the squirrel had found that under the nightstand he was fairly safe and he was spending a lot of time under there. We had erected rather elaborate barriers and ramps trying to get him out the window, although they were proving to be worthless. So I got up on the bed and put my broom behind the night stand. I was sort of sprawled across the bed from the side opposite the night stand as I poked. Sure enough he came out and jumped up on the bed with me!!!!! He was staring right at me. I was terrified. Bill was terrified. Bill quit. I called Dave. Once again he started to tell me what I should do. I said very solemnly "Dave. It got up on the bed with me." Dave said "I will be there inside a half hour."
And so in came Dave with his lasso on a stick ready to catch the thing and exterminate it there and then. The three of us were trying to surround this wild thing tearing back and forth around and up and over and under and past and YIKES! It was awful. But with Bill as back up and me cowering in the corner yelling out with fright every time it looked in my direction, Dave did save the day and out the window it went. Dave charged me nothing and I declared him my hero.
The EvidenceThe Weapon
The Perpetrator (Actor Portrayed)
And so folks, another single-woman-in-the-suburbs saga ends happily. And I have a website for you to go to. WWW.deadsquirrel.com. Please go there and pledge your support.
Wednesday, January 25, 2006
"The trouble with so many diets is that they ignore a very simple fact: people eat because they are hungry, and they overeat because they are extremely hungry. Thus, the worst possible way to attempt to control your weight is by missing meals." Miss Piggy
Think what a better world it would be if we all, the whole world, had cookies and milk about three o'clock every afternoon and then lay down on our blankets for a nap. ~Barbara Jordan
Friendship isn't a big thing - it's a million little things. ~Author Unknown
"The winner is the chef who takes the same ingredients aseveryone else and produces the best results."-- Edward de Bono
Have a great day everyone!
Monday, January 23, 2006
I spend a lot of time, (especially during the wee hours of the morning when I can't sleep) surfing the web. There is so much information out there and so little time! But lately I have been looking into all the great deals for on-line shopping. And even off-line shopping.
There are great sites that have coupons available just for the clicking. Coupon clicking may replace coupon clipping at some point. Sometimes there are sale ads or there might be percentages off offers and many times you can find coupons for free shipping for websites like Amazon.com. There are even "free stuff" coupons. Here are some cool deals I found lately:
Valentines Day for someone special? Try these links:
Not exactly a coupon, but if your Valentine is on a diet, why not send virtual chocolates?
If you have kids, here is a website that lets them (or you) make up their own Valentines Day Coupons for their very own Valentine.
But some of the sites that offer special deals for sites we are familiar with or stores we frequent are:
This following sites offer printable coupons but you have to be careful because usually they only let you print them once.
Have fun and if you happen upon a great deal, share it by leaving a comment on my blog (do it anonymously and you don't have to register as a blogger).
Have a great day!
Saturday, January 21, 2006
The following biographical information is excerpted from an article posted on the Web. I added the pictures and a little epilogue. Remember, usually if you click on the pictures you can enlarge them for better viewing.
ANNA MARY ROBERTSON MOSES (1860-1961), better known as "GRANDMA" MOSES, was born into a farming family on 7 September 1860 in Greenwich, Washington County, NY.
One of 10 children of Russell King Robertson and his wife Mary, Anna Robertson grew up understanding fully both the hard work of farming and the good times of rural life. In 1873, when she was 12 years old, she went to work as a servant on a neighbouring farm. She worked in service for about 14 years. Then she met a "God-fearing hired man" two years her junior, Thomas Salmon MOSES (1862-1927) of Hoosick, Rensselaer County, NY. She was already 27 years old - unusually late for the times - when she married Thomas Moses on 9 November 1887. Thomas Moses had heard that there were opportunities for those who went south at this time, and he and his wife decided to move to the Carolinas. En route, they stopped off to visit friends who lived in the Shenandoah Valley, near Staunton, Augusta County, Virginia. The friends persuaded the Moseses to settle there instead, and they did. Thomas and Anna Moses farmed this mountainous, rocky part of western Virginia at quite a few locations for about 16years. Sometimes they were tenant farmers, but twice, in 1896 and again in 1903, they bought farms. During her time in Virginia, Anna Moses churned and sold butter to augment the family income. She is also reported to have made and sold potato chips. Despite her relatively late start, Anna Moses gave birth to 10 children, of whom five died in childhood and were buried near their Virginia home.
In 1905, when Anna Moses was 45 years old, their farmhouse in Virginia burned, and Thomas Moses decided to return to his native Hoosick, Rensselaer County, NY. He, his wife Anna and their five surviving children moved from Augusta County, VA to Rensselaer County, NY. Anna Moses later spoke of her great sadness at having to leave behind the graves of her five dear deceased children when they moved away from Virginia. Not long after their return to New York state, Thomas and Anna Moses bought a dairy farm called Mount Nebo, situated near the hamlet of Eagle Bridge in the town of Hoosick, Rensselaer County, NY. For about 20 years, Thomas and Anna Moses and their children worked this farm. Thomas Moses died there on 15 January 1927; Anna Moses was 67 when she became a widow. Her son Forrest Moses continued to work Mount Nebo farm, and Anna Moses continued to live there for two years while
also caring for her ill daughter Anna, who had married her first cousin Frank MOSES. Frank and Anna Moses resided with their daughters in nearby Bennington, Bennington County, Vermont, and Anna Moses Moses had contracted tuberculosis. Anna Robertson Moses continued the hard work of farming until the onset of arthritis. She then devoted more of her time to needlepoint, until the arthritis made it impossible for her fingers to do the very close work that needlepoint requires. When her daughter Anna died Anna Robertson Moses ran her son-in-law's household in Bennington and looked after her granddaughters for two years, until her son-in-law remarried in February 1935 and his new wife took over the running of the household.
It was then that Anna Moses, by now 74 years old, at last had some time to paint, and paint in earnest she did. She had enjoyed drawing all her life and could recall using berry juices to add colour to her childhood drawings in nearby Washington County, NY. But there was much work to do on a farm, and her father had encouraged his little girl to spend her time working, not drawing. Her brothers reportedly teased her about the "lamb scapes" she drew. But during these years and later while she was in service, the young Anna Robertson tucked away in her mind her vivid observations about scenes of ordinary daily life in this part of New York state. At first, her painting was as a hobby and nothing more.
She was prolific; during the nearly 30 years of her painting career, she produced more than 1,500 works. She lived sometimes with her son Forrest K. Moses on Mount Nebo farm and sometimes with her youngest son, Hugh W. Moses (1900-1949). It was her daughter (one source says it was a daughter-in-law) who first recognised her talent. This daughter (and if it was a daughter not a daughter-in-law, then this would have been Winona Moses) arranged to have four of Anna Robertson Moses's paintings displayed in the window of W. D. Thomas's drug store in the village of Hoosick Falls, Rensselaer County, NY in 1938, at which time Anna Moses was 77 years old. During the Easter holidays of that year, a New York City engineer and amateur art collector named Louis J. CALDOR, while travelling through the area, just happened to stop off in Hoosick Falls and see these paintings in the drug-store window. He saw in them great potential, and he purchased all the displayed paintings on the spot. He also sought out the artist and bought "all 15" of her paintings. It was Louis Caldor who launched Anna Robertson Moses on her professional career. He arranged for three of her paintings to be included in an October 1939 exhibition of "Contemporary Unknown American Painters" at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City. "Grandma" Moses became an overnight sensation - at the age of 79 years.
"Grandma" Moses celebrated her 100th birthday on 7 September 1960. New York Governor Nelson Aldrich Rockefeller proclaimed the day "Grandma Moses Day" in her honor. She died on 13 December 1961 at Hoosick Falls at the age of 101 years and was buried beside her husband in the New Upper Maple Grove Cemetery at the south end of Main Street in the village of Hoosick Falls, in the town of Hoosick, Rensselaer County, NY. The gravestone of Anna M. Robertson wife of Thomas S. Moses is inscribed with this epitaph: "Her primitive paintings captured the spirit and preserved the scene of a vanishing countryside." She had outlived at least seven of her 10 children; one son, Forrest K. Moses (1893-1974), survived her.
Art historians classify "Grandma" Moses as an "American primitive" painter. Her style was often copied by others. In her own family, her son Forrest K. Moses also showed a talent for painting, as did his grandson ("Grandma" Moses's great-grandson), Will MOSES, who today continues his painting and resides with his wife, Sharon, and their children Jerry MOSES, Lloyd MOSES and Georgianna MOSES at the same 200-year-old Mount Nebo farm in Eagle Bridge where "Grandma" Moses lived and painted. "Grandma" Moses's paintings hang in public and private collections all over the world.
I bought a numbered Will Moses print about 15 or more years ago called Skating Party and I love it. And I just love that he is continuing his great grandmother's legacy in this way. I plan to get another print someday soon. The framer I bought it from will frame a second one in matching frames even after all these years. I better get another one while they are still in business, I guess. It is hard to tell the difference between his great grandmother's paintings and his own, don't you think?
Ever since I was a little girl I have been fascinated by Grandma Moses' story. The reason for that is probably because my grandmother Hall had Grandma Moses wallpaper in her stairway and Grandma Moses lampshades in her living room. I spent long periods of time sitting on the stairs studying that wallpaper. We all knew the story, as did everyone back then. Because my grandmother admired her paintings and was inspired by her story, Anna Robertson Moses became a role model for me. Grandma Moses' story is even more of an inspiration to me now that I am halfway through my life. (I plan to live well past 100, you know.) At the age of 79 she was "discovered"! I want to be discovered, too! And from this story I still have 25 years to figure out what for!
Have a wonderful Saturday.
Sunday, January 15, 2006
A pun is the lowest form of humor, unless you thought of it yourself. ~Doug Larson
Puns are little "plays on words" that a certain breed of person loves to spring on you and then look at you in a certain self-satisfied way to indicate that he thinks that you must think that he is by far the cleverest person on Earth now that Benjamin Franklin is dead, when in fact what you are thinking is that if this person ever ends up in a lifeboat, the other passengers will hurl him overboard by the end of the first day even if they have plenty of food and water. ~Dave Barry, Why Humor Is Funny
Hanging is too good for a man who makes puns; he should be drawn and quoted. ~Fred Allen
Dont you just love puns? They are more fun to make than to hear, for sure. And I think there may be a pun gene. Most of my family members are pretty good at making some of the best (worst) puns I ever heard. I made one of the best puns of my life- maybe the best pun in all of history- a couple of years ago:
My friend Melinda's two daughters, Emily and Lynn were in my car one night. We were goint to meet Melinda at the Jr. High School, leaving my car in the lot there while we went to see Christmas lights in a nearby neighborhood. As we approached the darkened parking lot, there was a sign that said "Buses Only".
But I wanted to park there and so I pulled in anyway and I said:
"Today I am a bus...it is my BusMitzvah!".
I still think it was genious. You know how Jewish 13 year olds say "Today I am a man."? Well?......Get it?
Well, if you don't like that one, you can actually go to www.badpuns.com and find some pretty good ones, but not as good as that one. Here are a couple of samples:
"Doc, Doc! I've got no left ventricle!" Tom said half-heartedly
"I'm waiting for the leap year," he said lackadaisically.
"I'm tired of smiling all the time," moaned Lisa.
Hope you have a great Punday!
Saturday, January 14, 2006
This Blog is read by people in 10 different states, by my count. If I missed your state, let me know and I will do the research. But for now, here is a list of some of the strange laws on the books. For more, go to http://www.crazylaws.com/
• Cape Coral: It is against the city ordinance to hang your clothes outside on a clothesline; It it illegal to park a pick-up truck in your driveway or in front of your house on the street (This law is limited to only those who do not own the house)
• Under a 1959 ordinance, stubborn children were considered vagrants in Jupiter Inlet Colony, Fla.
• In Sarasota it is illegal to sing in a public place while attired in a swimsuit.
• In Miami, it's illegal for men to be seen publicly in any kind of strapless gown.
• Car wash attendants in San Francisco, California may not use old pairs of underwear to wash or dry vehicles.
• In Pacific Grove, CA Molesting butterflies can result in a $500 fine.
• The city of San Francisco holds a copyright on the name "San Francisco." It is illegal to manufacture any item with the name without first getting permission from the city. Since the Supreme Court upheld the copyright, San Francisco has had an annual $300 million surplus every year.
• Hartford: You aren't allowed to cross a street while walking on your hands
• Waterbury: It is illegal for any beautician to hum, whistle, or sing while working on a customer
• In Hartford, Connecticut, it is illegal to kiss your wife on Sunday.
• Devon: It is unlawful to walk backwards after sunset.
• In Chicago it is also illegal to take a French poodle to the opera, and for women over 200 pounds (90 kilos) to ride horses in shorts.
• Des Plaines: Wheelbarrows with For-Sale signs may not be chained to trees.
• In Chicago, Illinois, it is illegal to fish in pajamas.
• In Joliet it's against the law to mispronounce the city's name. Offenders can be fined up to $500.
• In Lexington, Kentucky, it's illegal to carry an ice cream cone in your pocket.
• A Kentucky statute says: "No female shall appear in a bathing suit on any highway within this state unless she is escorted by at least two officers or unless she be armed with a club." Later, an amendment proposed: "The provisions of this statute shall not apply to any female weighing less than sixty pounds nor exceeding 200 pounds; nor shall it apply to female horses."
• Owensboro: A woman may not buy a hat without her husband's permission.
• In Kentucky every citizen of is required to take a shower once a year.
• Hopkinton: Though horses and cows are allowed on the common, dogs are prohibited.
• In Boston, Massachusetts it is illegal to take a bath unless instructed to do so by a physician.
• In Massachusetts you must have a license to wear a goatee.
• It is illegal to reproach Jesus Christ or the holy ghost.
• It is illegal to put tomatoes in clam chowder.
• Marlboro: It is illegal to buy, sell or possess a squirt gun. Silly string is illegal in the city limits.
• North Andover: An ordinance prohibits the use of space guns.
• Cambridge: It is illegal to shake carpets in the street, or to throw orange peels on the sidewalk.
• Boston: It is illegal to play the fiddle. Two people may not kiss in front of a church. No more than two baths may be taken within the confines of the city. No one may cross the Boston Common without carrying a shotgun in case of bears.
• Charlotte: Women must have their bodies covered by at least 16 yards of cloth at all times.
• In Barber, North Carolina fights between cats and dogs are prohibited.
• In Nags Headm North Carolina you can be fined for singing out of tune for more than ninety seconds
• Hornytown: Massage parlors have been banned.
• In Raleigh, North Carolina, before a man asks for a woman's hand in marriage, he must be "inspected by all the barnyard animals on the young woman's family's property, to ensure a harmonious farm life."
• Eugene: It is illegal to show movies or attend a car race on Sundays. It is legal to conduct a horse race or a symphony concert.
• In Willowdale, Oregon, no man may curse while having sex with his wife.
• Marion: Ministers are forbidden from eating garlic or onions before delivering a sermon.
• Myrtle Creek: One may not box with a kangaroo.
• Spartanburg: Eating watermelons in the Magnolia Street cemetery is forbidden.
• Fountain Inn: Horses are to wear pants at all times.
• Charleston: It is against the law to drive a motorized vehicle on King Street.
• On Hilton Head Island, South Carolina it is illegal to shine a flashlight on a sea turtle
• When approaching a four way or blind intersection in a non-horse driven vehicle you must stop 100 ft from the intersection and discharge a firearm into the air to warn horse traffic.
And finally in
• Lexington: Noone may eat ice cream on the sidewalk.
• Memphis: Illegal for a woman to drive a car unless there is a man either running or walking in front of it waving a red flag to warn approaching motorists and pedestrians.
• Oneida: An ordinance forbids anyone to sing the song "It Ain't Goin' To Rain No Mo'."
• Driving is not to be done while asleep.
• It is legal to gather and consume road kill
• Fayette County: You may not have more than five inoperable vehicles on a piece of property
• Dyersburg: It is illegal for a woman to call a man for a date.
• Lenoir City: When you pull up to a stop sign you must fire a gun out the window to warn horse carriages that you are coming.
Late Entry: Kathy reminded me that Alison is in the state of Washington. I didn't even know she read my Blog! I am flattered. These are for Alison and Brian.
• In Seattle, Washington, it is illegal to carry a concealed weapon that is over six feet in length.
• In Spokane, Wash., it used to be illegal to interrupt a religious meeting by having a horse race.
• In the state of Washington, there is a law against having sex with a virgin under any circumstances.
• Bremerton: You may not shuck peanuts on the street.
• Everett: It is illegal to display a hypnotized or allegedly hypnotized person in a store window.
• A law to reduce crime states: "It is mandatory for a motorist with criminal intentions to stop at the city limits and telephone the chief of police as he is entering the town."
Have a great day!