Five for Friday

(NaBloPoMo Day 10)

The copout edition.

Did you miss a post this week? No worries. Here’s the rundown:

  1. Monday: Music Monday for 11.11.2019. Songs written by, performed by, or about Native Americans.
  2. Tuesday: Let the “Why-ning” begin. Just a gripe or two. Nothing serious, though.
  3. Wednesday: The Black Crowes Are Back Together. And they’re going on tour.
  4. Thursday: Writer’s Workshop for 11.14.2019. Meet my youngest dog, Aristotle!
  5. Friday: Here we are. TGIF!

What are YOUR plans for the weekend? How is YOUR NaBloPoMo game going? Are you still sticking to your goals?

Writer’s Workshop for 11.14.2019

(NaBloPoMo Day 9)

Is NaBloPoMo kicking anyone else’s ass? I’m hanging in there, but I am really struggling to find the time to post.

Anyway, the prompt I chose for this week’s Mama Kat’s Pretty Much World Famous Writer’s Workshop is “Introduce us to one of your four-legged friends.”

This is so timely, because I’ve been meaning to make a post about Aristotle, our 2.5 year old AmStaff boy, for quite some time. I’m seeking advice from other dog owners, especially with experience with Staffies and other Pit Bull breeds, because I have some issues.

But first….he was this adorable, chunky, squishy thing. I named him Aristotle Butterbean; Ari for short.

He’s grown from that little chunk to this:

…to this:

Isn’t he such a handsome boy?

He STILL sleeps with his tongue out, and I love it! I especially love when I wake him up suddenly and he gives me the evil eye but I can’t really take it seriously because he’s got this knit brow and serious look above the nose, but the cute little tongue is still hanging out from sleep. I have been unable to capture a photo of that, but here he is chillin’ with my oldest son:

He is the funniest, sweetest boy. Example: the other night, I had him out in the living room with me, and my girls (April, my Dachshund, and Oakley, my Taco Terrier) were in my bedroom. The girls were loudly crying, and I had just gotten off my double shift and just wanted to eat and watch the previous night’s This Is Us episode. And they would NOT SHUT UP! I finally told them “Shut up! Or I am going to re-home every one of you!” Because you know they can understand me, right?

Aristotle was curled up beside me. His ears perked up and he lifted his head, and he actually talked to me. I don’t know what he said because it was in doggy language, and I don’t have all that worked out just yet! But I thought it was incredible how he picked up on my distress and attempted to comfort me with cute doggy noises. Or maybe he was chastising me, who knows? I mean, that was a pretty mean (albeit empty) threat.

Although he’s really sweet and smells like baby shampoo and charms ladies and gentlemen alike everywhere we go, he is now 75 pounds of pure muscle. We’ve had him since he was weaned, and have not had issues until this past summer. I’ll spare you all the details, but the long and short of it is that he got into it with Oakley after a new neighbor and her dogs moved in. My sons weren’t home and I had to break it up. It was messy. It was traumatizing. Saving her was expensive. It still makes me nervous to have them in the same room together, so I separate them. The whining and crying is driving me up the wall.

This is where I ask for advice, as surely I’m not the only person out there whose dogs don’t get along? I think it’s mostly his maturity. I’ve spared you all any pics that show the set of truck nuts this dog now has, which should have been removed long ago, but he’s my son’s dog and my son didn’t have it done when he was a young puppy, and now I’m afraid neutering him might make him truly aggressive. And now my fingers are out of breath. I think his maturity, coupled with becoming territorial because of the new neighbor dogs, is probably the gist of it.

He loves my Dachshund and has no issues with her. He tries to love Oakley, and they get along till they don’t (three times since this, he’s gone after her and I’ve had to stop it. He’s not gone after her aggressively, but he has a high prey drive and she runs from him now. If I allow him to “catch” her I may have another bloodbath on my hands. We actually tried re-integrating them after a time, but this is what led to me separating him from the girls.) He responds really well to my sons and their commands, but they aren’t here a lot of the time due to work. Before this summer, he NEVER showed any aggression – food, animal, human, or anything else.

Do I get him fixed? Will that make it worse? Can this be trained out of him? I’m at a loss. I don’t want to constantly have to hear crying when my other dogs are separated from me, and crying from him when he has to go in his kennel when I go to bed at night. But their safety is more important than my feelings, so I can definitely keep this up if need be.

I don’t want to end this on a bad note. I love all my dogs so much (yes, I consider Ari, my son’s dog, mine), and have no plans to re-home any of them. I am just trying to figure out what the best course of action is from here on out.

Have YOU ever had an issue with your pets not getting along? What worked for you?

The Black Crowes Are Back Together

(NaBloPoMo Day 8)

The Black Crowes are back together and touring again for the thirtieth anniversary of Shake Your Money Maker! Well, apparently Chris and Rich Robinson are the ONLY original members touring, but this will work for me since I’ve never seen them live.

I was just thinking about them the other day, when I included them in my first NaBloPoMo/first Music Monday post of November.

From what I understand, they will be playing Shake Your Money Maker in its entirety on this tour, which will make a stop in Birmingham next year. And yes, I am going…even if I have to go by myself. But yay! Black Crowes! And yay! A post not missed.

Featured image is the cover of The Black Crowes’ Shake Your Money Maker CD, which I own

Let the “Why-ning” Begin

(NaBloPoMo Day 7)

I’m home from work today for a doctor’s appointment in a bit – not for the nasty malady that I still have, but this would be the perfect day to get this nasty, heavy congestion knocked out for good. Therefore, I am still OJ-ing and Mucinex-ing and sleeping as much as I can. It’s a drag, but I don’t mind the extra sleep. I just hate that I’ll be paying for today (in time) with Saturday, which I normally have off.

So I’ve noticed something about my blog lately that has me scratching my head over how to fix it. I chose the Lato font for the global body (sidebar content, posts), and everything looks great in the customizer (self hosted wordpress). Then I hit publish, and the post content font looks different. The sidebar content is fine, but on the posts side of the page, the font is darker and heavier, and I can’t tell bold from the rest of it.

I have looked all over for where I might have accidentally not closed a bold tag, but that would have only affected from that tag down, it wouldn’t affect everything on that side of the page. I finally went back and chose another font that I don’t have that trouble with, so this is rather moot at this point. But it’s not my first choice, and it still bothers me a bit. And Lato doesn’t behave that way on my other site. WHY?? I may have found a solution, but the mastery of it still has me frustrated.

Another (totally unrelated) thing: the other day, I made myself some hot chocolate for my sore, scratchy throat. The water was scalding hot, and I stirred and stirred and stirred the contents of the instant hot chocolate powder packet. And stirred and stirred some more, but I still had clumps. I finally gave up and decided to just drink the liquid and eat the clumps, which is what I did. But when all the liquid and clumps were gone, there was still a good third of the packet in the form of sludge in the bottom of my cup. WHY?? Why doesn’t hot chocolate mix dissolve in hot water anymore? It hasn’t always been this way.

Does anything have YOU “why-ning” lately? Let’s hear about it in the comments!

Music Monday for 11.11.2019

(NaBloPoMo Day 6)

November is National Native American Heritage Month, so the theme for this week’s Monday’s Music Moves Me is “Songs inspired by, performed by, or about Native Americans.”

Three songs about Native Americans; one quite well-known, one not as well-known (but my favorite of the three, as it’s by one of my favorite bands!), and one by a hair band who had a day in the sun in the late eighties, but has since been mostly tragically forgotten until the movie Hot Rod featured several of their songs in its soundtrack and musicians such as MATT and KIM, Laibach, and Chamillionaire sampled their songs:

Iron Maiden – “Run To The Hills”

The Cult – “American Horse”

Europe – “Cherokee”

And a song by a Native American – sort of. I’m foregoing Redbone and others here and choosing instead a song by Ozzy Osbourne in which Randy Castillo (Apache) had a part in writing and, of course, performing:

Ozzy Osbourne – “Crazy Babies”

Who are some of YOUR favorite Native American musicians and performers? Let’s see them in the comments!

Featured image courtesy Comfreak on Pixabay

Writer’s Workshop for 11.07.2019 on 11.08.2019

(NaBloPoMo Day 5)

It’s been a pretty hectic week. Felt bad on Monday, was sick on Tuesday, worked the double shift Wednesday, pretty much passed out after work because I was still sick, and now here I am. I’m bringing my Mama Kat’s Pretty Much World Famous Writer’s Workshop post to the table a day late, partly because I wanted to post about my son’s birthday yesterday, but mostly because I am unprepared and was too tired to pull anything together at the 11th hour Wednesday night.

The prompt I chose this week was “Create a list of activities you’d like to accomplish this fall.”

I’m all about lists, so let’s have at it:

  • Get my aunt’s home sold. This blog is just basically about me getting my aunt’s estate settled now. What am I going to write about once that’s all done?
  • Return to Memphis when the moon is full, and go take more pics at The Lookout at the Pyramid. But first, maybe I ought to share all my photos from my first trip to the Pyramid.
  • Start my kitchen-to-eat-in-kitchen and dining-room-to-office/workroom transformations. But Oh. Em. GEEEEEEE, there’s so much cleaning and purging to do! Cleaning off my desk/work table. Relocating it to the dining room. Relocating the dining table to the kitchen. Cleaning out and relocating the vintage desk, which currently serves as a kitchen island of sorts. Moving other furniture around. And that’s just to get the projects started.
  • Publish an updated thrift list. I like to make lists of the items I want/need from thrift stores, yard sales, etc., since I really don’t like mainstream home shopping too much.
  • Make the rest of my homemade cleaners. Remember when I posted my cleaning vinegar recipe, and how I used a repurposed liquor bottle to store it? Well, I’m making more cleaners, planning on posting more recipes for them, and using more repurposed liquor bottles and other vintage containers to hold them, and have what I think is a pretty neat display idea to put together once I’ve amassed a few different ones. I’m keeping the idea hush-hush for now. It’s not ground-breaking or anything, but I still don’t want to give it away before its time.
  • Keep to my NaBloPoMo goal. I only committed to weekdays, and I’m trying my best.
  • Finishing AT LEAST one book and reviewing it. I love to read, but tend to only read when trying to fall asleep at night. As a result, it takes me a while to get anything read. However, I love book blogging, so I am reading books for review here on the blog and over at GoodReads.
  • A few hikes with the family before the weather gets too cold. Because even though I am in the south and the winters are quite mild, it’s still too cold for me most of the fall/winter.
  • Keep purging the things I no longer need/want! This one is so, so important. I’m bringing family heirlooms home from my aunt’s as well as some projects to put together. I need to get rid of stuff ASAP, so I am getting things ready to donate, and if I’m lucky, re-opening my Etsy Shop and selling off some of my treasures.

But if we’re being completely honest? I’ll be so happy just to get all my various email accounts marked as “all read” and my downloads folder cleared out.

Which activities do YOU hope to accomplish this fall?

Featured image courtesy Olichel on Pixabay

I interrupt my regularly scheduled posting

(NaBloPoMo Day 4)

Today is Mama Kat’s Pretty Much World Famous Writer’s Workshop. I will get to it a day late because today is also the 27th birthday of the one who made me a Mom…

Lookout at the Pyramid, Memphis, TN, September 16, 2019

Where has all the time gone? This has certainly been a wild ride! I hope your day is amazing!

Be sure to come back tomorrow for my belated Writer’s Workshop post!

Taking my small victories where I can

(NaBloPoMo Day 3)

On Monday, I felt queasy and gross and “off” all day long. Tuesday morning I woke up with a headache, swollen throat, fever, and a slightly bloody nose. I don’t know what was going on. It could have been viral, or it could have been a side effect of getting used to the cooler temperatures and having heat on in the house. But seeing as Wednesday is my double shift, and I can NOT call out for my double shifts, I called out Tuesday in the hopes of beating this illness back with rest, OTC meds, orange juice, and the book I’ve been trying to finish for a while now.

As it turns out, that is a good time to reflect on all the good things – the small victories – I’ve been fortunate enough to have here lately:

  • I am inching ever closer to the date I can let my aunt’s house go.
  • My water-drinking game is still on point. I never thought I’d see the day when I preferred water to all else, but here I am! And I hope those days are here to stay.
  • I’ve found two new shows I love: See and The Morning Show. I know the latter has been getting some pretty brutal reviews, but obviously I love it.
  • I have FINALLY – after fifteen years of living here – decided how to best utilize my home’s layout! I can’t wait to get to work to make it all come together, as this really has seemed a lot like a temporary residence for most of these fifteen years. That’s all a story for another post, though….and that post may have to help me meet my NaBloPoMo goal at some point.
  • My credit score is still holding steady – and should be set to improve here soon, as I’m about to make my third on-time car payment. I will never take good credit for granted again.
  • I was waiting in line at CVS the other day to have my Advair prescription refilled, when they told me that there is now a generic for Advair (Wixela), and my insurance covered it 100%. I have been waiting a dozen years for a generic alternative to Advair!
  • Aristotle, our 70 pound pit bull, decided he did not like the neighbor’s dogs barking at him, and ran so hard he snapped out of his collar to meet them at their fence. It took me a while, but I was finally able to wrestle him back to our porch. In work clothes and on a full bladder, natch! And the strain of it surprisingly didn’t cause me empty it. Not even a little bit, y’all! And my work clothes remained clean. If that’s not a win, then I don’t know what is!

It’s too easy to get overwhelmed by the stressful things in life, so yes, I do think I’ll take my small victories when and wherever they happen.

What small victories are YOU thankful for these days?

Featured image courtesy Shad0wfall on Pixabay

It’s Day Two of NaBloPoMo

(NaBloPoMo Day 2)

…for me, anyway, as I only committed to weekdays. And can you believe I already feel like tapping out? I bet you can.

This one’s going to be short and sweet, as I don’t have much to say at this moment. I felt queasy most of the day, then came home and made homemade dog food, which I forgot to photograph for a post. I looked for one from before so that I could share the recipe, but came up empty-handed.

I’ll remember next time – I’ll be making more homemade dog food this weekend, and will be sure to photograph it then.

In the meantime? Behold this small collection of really rad postcards I got from the U.S. Space & Rocket Center a few years ago to send out with my Etsy orders:

Music Monday for 11.04.2019 – Some Firsts

(NaBloPoMo Day 1)


It’s the first Music Monday of November, my first NaBloPoMo post (see my post about NaBloPoMo here.), and since this is a freebie week for Monday’s Music Moves Me, I thought I’d post a small playlist of first songs released by some bands I love. Keep in mind that these are not necessarily their first commercially successful singles, though.

R.E.M. – “Gardening At Night”

Thirty Seconds To Mars – “Capricorn (A Brand New Name)”

The Black Crowes – “Jealous Again”

Nine Inch Nails – “Down In It”

Alice In Chains – “We Die Young”

What are YOU listening to this first weekend in November?

Featured image courtesy ponce_photography on Pixabay