Moving Across Country with Pets

In response to this article about moving with pets, here is my comment synopsis on our recent move from Pennsylvania to California with our pets.

We just moved across the country from Pennsylvania to California in a van, with our cat and three bird cages of birds. Five days! I’m telling you….it was something else. The birds were absolutely fine. I left them in the car overnight (it was autumn and not too cold). I didn’t change their papers the entire way because I was afraid of them getting out. So all that was good.

But the cat. He was in a good sized dog cage. He is a territorial indoor-outdoor cat with a routine of guarding the house during the day and his yard at night. He had a thing down and had the best of both worlds. This move was really hard on him. It was a pain to clean his box twice a day when he poo’d because we couldn’t let him out of the cage. And he’s not a good coverer, so it did smell really bad in a van. So we had to stop and clean it every time. And he yowled and yowled he wanted out. But during the day he slept hard. We also left him in the van to sleep at night.

I did use this product called Feliway. It did help calm him. Some. A little. Very little. But every bit of help helps.

When we finally got to the destination, and we settled into the apartment, he was let out to roam. The first thing he did is find a corner and pee 😦 So we put a box there as well as left the one in his cage.

His cage is still up (we’ve been here two months+). He just goes in there to use the box. He still wants out and paws at the window. I will get him (eventually) a cat tree and things to sit on so he can look outside better. He has his place by the window now. Rescue Remedy helped at the apartment to not be so stressed. I think it takes the edge off. I had toys and we played with him but all he wanted was out. He still wants out at night. Sometimes I feel bad for him, but you know, I want a house again too. So….one day hopefully we can get a house and he can establish his cat guard routine there.

I had to do all the paperwork like this article mentioned. States like California and Florida have border guards and they will inspect your vehicle. All the work I did beforehand, though, for the vets, my cat, and my plants…when we got to the border, the guard just said, “Go.” We were surprised. I’m still glad I went through all the plant/cat/bird inspection process. I learned a lot.

With all these things in our van, we had little room for anything but bags. Just FYI if you plan to drive pets across country you won’t have space for much more than a few bags. Keep that in mind.

We shipped all our home items via U-Haul storage containers. It was fabulous, and less expensive than PODS. It took them a long time to arrive but well, it took us a long time to arrive across the country too.

To everyone else who makes long trips with their pets, good luck. It can be kind of tough and a little scary and frustrating, but if you care for and love your animals do all you can to make them comfortable and be prepared to have plenty of patience and wherewithal for your trip.


My Twitter Account

Four days since I sent Twitter support messages regarding my suspended account.  Unfortunately, when (if!) I get it back I’ll be using the account differently. Although I didn’t do anything wrong that I know of, who knows what happened! Maybe a service that my account connects to spammed my account with some sales message. Maybe someone was having a bad day and one of my harmless tweets rubbed them the wrong way and they reported me. Maybe people are sick of seeing my posts about genetically modified food. If so, unfollow me then, but don’t report and get me suspended.

I have no idea what went wrong and am sad to lose access to my account where I follow and have over 1K followers. Perhaps I will get my account back, perhaps not. I’ve been reading up and Twitter seems to suspend accounts for no rhyme or reason, or even accidentally. Seriously? Most people complaining about suspended accounts have realized they’ve been following aggressively but that’s not me.

I’m careful about what I let in my Twitter feed, but sometimes some really bad garbage gets in there. That person will usually get an unfollow from me. But there are some people who have extremely different views from me. I’m pretty opened minded and give plenty of leeway when it comes to opinion. Instead of reporting them when they post crazy messages, I just let them have their say. This is free speech. Sometimes I will learn something from their view. And if I don’t want to listen, I can unfollow. Not report, which is what  a lot of people do instead, because they’ll just get flustered and angry when someone may have a different viewpoint than theirs.

I wonder why celebrity accounts never get suspended? I mean they promote themselves and their products and services all the time, but I’ve seen posts from average people who’ve had their accounts  suspended for promoting their books or businesses. It’s not fair.

I allowed one woman on my list because I liked some of her tweets. Then she started peppering them with advertisements…many a day. I didn’t report her but her account I think qualifies for suspension. Why do these people get away with this, but the average person using Twitter to chat and make friends and post/retweet interesting links and news cannot have the freedom to do so without fear of suspension?

Twitter is a lovely service, and I’m missing it desperately. However, if I don’t get my account back soon, I’ll be setting up a new account, keeping the real people on it only to the close friends I’ve made, and then the rest will be news sources. No more making my account for sharing interesting news with people or chatting with just anyone. No more using Twitter fully like it’s meant to be used. It’s very sad but this suspension has dramatically changed my view of a sweet service.

What lights you up?

I just saw a tweet from Huffington Post:

TRAGIC: WWII vet dies waiting for VA benefits

This poor veteran died because of backlog of paperwork. That’s ridiculous, but more than likely the reason is what his daughter-in-law described:

“It’s almost like the government is waiting for him to die so they won’t have to pay the benefits. And that’s what happened,” his daughter-in-law Rebecca Scott told Fox 29. “I’m at a loss for words as to how these men and women have been treated.”

I’m horrified and furious at how we treat one another in this country…mostly how health businesses and government can treat us. Here is my comment I posted on that news article.

God forbid you get sick in this country. Or old. “THEY” (i.e. corporate and government greedies) just don’t want the old or sick to live because it costs too much to take care of them. What happened to all the benefits I paid when I was young? Whose pockets did those go into? The elderly and ill, no matter whether they bled for our country, fed our country, used their minds or brawn for our country, are getting shuttled out of hospitals while still sick because they can’t pay, or because the “greedies” don’t want to care for them anymore due to cost. It’s a total travesty and we American citizens needs to change this with our votes, letters, and total striving for change of our system. If we don’t make changes, this will happen to us all more frequently, and soon we’ll be another third-world nation in the way we act and appear to other nations…greedy, corrupted, unwilling to care for or help our fellow neighbors, a God-less country. Unfortunately, we’ve already begun to be looked at that way around the world. What has this nation become, and what is it becoming? We need to stand up for huge change.”

I’ve not blogged for a long time – busy with life stuff. I’m also an extremely sensitive person and have been undergoing a lot of stress. How life is right now in the past two years has really been getting me down, so I try to avoid the stressful situations by doing things that are fun or relaxing to me. I’ve been escaping into these things a lot.

But after reading this article, I think maybe I need to put some of that energy into fighting. I hate that scientists without a God are genetically modifying our food. I hate that greedy people with no fear of punishment are controlling our health care systems.  I hate that people with money care nothing about people with no money, going on living their lives like nothing is wrong in this world. I hate that we go in and fiddle with other country’s governments, getting innocent people killed in the process. I’m so angry I could explode.

I wish I could live in a peaceful little world but a real world like that is not there anymore. I’m trying to make myself busy and avoid talking about these things because I just feel helpless, and angry when I do start talking about them. There’s no where for that anger to vent. In order to care for myself I escape. However, it’s just not working.

For some time, I’ve been extremely interested in working in the industries that require genetically modified foods to be labeled. I’m also learning about seeds, seed saving and heirloom seeds. I’m looking into organic farming and hiring myself out or volunteering to work on one to learn the ropes. I have no knowledge or experience in any of these things but this is a cause that lights me up!

What cause lights you up? Is it the article I posted about the vet? Health care? Treatment of animals? The goverment and its corruption? DO FREAKING SOMETHING ABOUT IT!! Get a job with these agencies and push the paperwork through fast. Find and implement a method to do this. Join an organization that forces labeling of all genetically modified food (me!) Write to your legislators about health care – heck BE one of the legislators who changes health care in this country for the good. Our President is trying but it’s not enough. He needs help! Join an animal organization and help animals in need. A country that doesn’t respect its animals and nature is no good country at all.

LET’S DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT. ALL OF IT. I want America to be a nation that is beautiful again.


When the weather gets warmer we get busy! I’ve not had the time to post here so much. I hope you are doing well!  Here’s some of what I’ve been up to recently:


  • Raised bed gardening – built them, filled them, planted and now have stuff growing! Picked lettuce and sugar snap peas already. Have tons of tomatoes coming!
  • Trying to widen the driveway. I’ve not done any work on this this year, but have gone to the masonary a couple of times with my husband to look at brick, etc. Time consuming.
  • Taking care of my lavender and herb garden.
  • Painted the deck and cleaned up
  • Had a yard sale last weekend – exhausting!

Gaming – Yes you have to make time for some gaming!

  • Was playing Runes of Magic and Allods Online when Sony’s EverQuest 2x was down. It’s back up now and I’m so into it I can’t get back to the others! My sister joined and we’re having fun decorating our EQ2 houses and questing in Butcherblock Mountains. 🙂 Maybe I’ll make a post on my characters some time.

Family and Pets

  • My mom was in the hospital these past few weeks – she had pneumonia. She’s ok now but it scared us all for awhile.
  • Today I worked out some computer help in exchange for tutoring for my son for Algebra II (something he had troubles with this year). She’s going to help him with that and some SAT prep, for as long as we can pay for it. She’s the one that suggested the bartering and I was happy about that. She needs some help with this program she’s installed and I’ll help figure it out and train her to use it so she can decide if she wants to buy it. My hours there in exchange for the tutoring she’ll give him. When I run out of hours, we have a bit of money from recycling metal that we can use for the tutoring, probably once a week this summer for him until school starts. Unfortunately I doubt we’ll be able to continue it once school starts but we’ll see. One step at a time.
  • Kitty – our kitty cat was REALLY sick last month and the month before. I thought he was going to die. But the vet down the street got him back on track and he slowly recovered over time. We’re very happy. He still has fleas though. UGH. Not as bad as last year. Frontline is helping but we haven’t been able to keep that on schedule due to financial constraints.
  • Finches – I had three left of what was once a 14-finch flock. Gave half to a friend, then the seven we had slowly died (old age, couple of accidents, etc.) The crippled girl we had (she was so cute!) died of old age about three weeks ago. Finches are social birds – the more the better. All I have left is a girl and a boy. The girl mourned her dead friend for almost two weeks. She barely came out to eat, and just tucked her head in her feathers for days on end. The boy called her and also comforted her. She finally broke out of it and is ok again, but I thought I’d lose her too. I would love to adopt some more, but my son and husband don’t want the birds anymore. They take up a lot of space, are messy, etc. But I love them and want more.  They’re sweet, not a lot of work and are fun to watch and they talk with me! The boy sings to me when I come in the room sometimes, too.
  • Looking to switch my husband’s job into something he can do himself. Looked into festivals but was thwarted at every turn. It’s so difficult to break into. Looking into vending from a cart or mobile unit now, but having problems figuring out how to get the money to do that. Thinking of selling the truck. *sigh* It seems so silly, if we’d have not gotten the truck in the first place we’d have had some money before. Now that we have the truck paid off, it seems foolish to sell it for partial the amount of money we put into it.

Techie Stuff

  • BlackBerry PlayBook – my husband is playing with this thing more than me! Until they release some more productive apps, I only pick it up to read the news, check if they have any new productive apps, update the software, and watch some videos sometimes when I don’t feel like being on the computer. I tease him that it’s his now. He does use it way more than me – mostly for Facebook. Barf.
  • Building a computer – my son needs a new computer. He’s using my old ABS machine (7 years old at least!) and still working well. It just can’t handle recent games, and is just having problems doing much at all. It’s time for that good ol’ machine to be converted to a media pc or storage system or something. So we’re planning on building a new system. It’s cheaper, and it’ll be a project from which my son can learn something.




Top Searches on Your WordPress Blog

Amazing – I just discovered Top Searches in my Dashboard. This makes me realize I need to fix my pages – people are searching for stuff on my old website and can’t find it.

They’re looking for my Basho haiku stuff, and stuff on the old Animal Crossing games. Yikes. I should put that stuff back up. At least I have my kyodai mahjonng links up.

“Top Searches
basho’s narrow road manuscript, animal crossing faces, homemade compost bin, kyodai+layout, raised beds with pallets”

GMO Infuriation

Official seal of the National Organic Program

Certified Organic

Not so long ago, foods marked “organic” meant that the foods had been grown without chemicals and pesticides that are harmful to the body. Chemically sprayed foodstuffs used to be just something to avoid because you wanted to simply avoid health issues from a buildup of pesticides in your system, had sensitivities, or just wanted to keep your body clean of these poisons.

Nowadays, there’s an additional evil element that certified organics promise you don’t get when you purchase a product with this label. That evil is GMOs. Now, something marked “certified organic” means that it’s also not a genetically modified organism, or GMO, which is the acronym used everywhere now. GMOs are essentially monster food. “Let’s take some pig genes, stick them in tomatoes, pass them off as being able to have greater shelf life so everyone will think our million-dollar sponsored work is A-OK, and hey! we get free experimental results on how this stuff effects the public.” GMOs make me hopping mad and they should make you so, too.

Genetically modifying food is playing God. It  is just daring nature not to do something destructive to us and our food supply. We need to leave our food alone, as God/nature has intended.

Learning all we can from the environment around us is great – it’s our way to grow in knowledge. However, exploring for the sake of learning and healing and helping is one thing. Modifying our food source for big company profit, with disregard to human health is just plain stupid, not smart and not scientifically responsible. I’m ashamed of the genetic engineers who screw with our food.

GMOS are not something to just avoid. They’re something we should all work hard to eliminate, starting first with our diet, ending up eliminating them from the world.

Here are some ways to start:

  • Look for the certified organic label on packaged food products. Buy only those packaged products. If you read the ingredients, everything that is grain/fruit/vegetable/sweetener etc. in the product should say “organic” before it. i.e. organic oats, organic corn, organic wheat, organic rice syrup  (in a cereal mix, for example)
  • Buy only organic produce
  • Grow your own garden. Everyone’s doing it and it’s fun. Buy heirloom seeds. Heirlooms are food that haven’t been touched genetically. Maybe a tomato or type of corn is something that your grandmother grew. Most of these foods cannot be found in your regular grocery store. Or you can buy organic seeds, which would not be from a GMO plant.
  • Teach your family how to choose organic food and to only choose organic foods. They may be a little more money but are worth our health. Nearly 100% of the corn products you find on the grocery store shelves are GMOs. That includes your corn chips, corn cereal, corn oils, taco shells, pancake mix…
  • Teach your friends and neighbors about organic foods. Talk to them directly. Teach a class in your home to your friends about purchasing and growing organics.

If everyone in a community only selected organic food in their supermarkets, all stores would immediately make a shift toward providing more of those foods. The processed GMO foods would eventually expire and be pulled off the shelves, and your local food store would be stocked with shelves and shelves of healthy, organic, life-giving foods!

If every community did this in a town, the town would be the first all-certified organic products town in your country! Health nuts would flock there, certainly. The town would have all the publicity and tourism it could handle.

You know the rest. Your state, your country – all concerned about the good health of each citizen. All foods clean of pesticides, free of genetic modification. All the frackin’ big food businesses would have to go organic, go out of business or get out of the food business.

It’s a simple, good, wholesome idea which starts in your shopping cart, in your kitchen cabinet, and in your garden.

Moving My Site

Been working all week on moving my website contents at over here. I’m going to close my site, basically. Why pay $5 a month (when I’m not working) to keep it open? I will keep the domain and point it here, put onto this WordPress blog the content that I think others may still use, and then shut down the account with my webhost.

I can use Picasa to keep my very small amount of images organized in folders. If I ever need to put everything up on a host again, I can, but I doubt I will. It’s been time-consuming just moving off my small amount of stuff. Trying to decide what to keep and what to let go…and knowing probably no one but me appreciates the stuff that’s there right now anyway. 😀

All so I can save about $60 a year. Worth it. And I don’t have to think about maintaining the site any longer.

The only thing I’ll miss is not being able to use scripts. No cool+fancy little updating widgets on the site or anything. Would love to post my Twitpic widget here, for example.

Anyway once that project is done, I’ll hop to the next whittle-my-extraneous-little-expenses project.

Goal to Post Each Week in 2011

I plan on participating in the Blog More 2011 Challenge at WordPress. Just thinking about it will help keep me posting things to this blog, rather than posting once a month, as I’ve been doing. 🙂 I hope I don’t peter out around about April and go back to posting once a month again. 😛

Life’s busy but it’s good to sit and get one’s thoughts out. Posting each week might just help with all that bottled-up stuff inside my head!

Goals: First Post

I’ve had a journal on LiveJournal for ages. I started getting away from posting there, and started moving toward Twitter. Now sometimes I realize I still want to post things but make it more available to the public. LiveJournal is great and I’ll still use it for communities and posting for friends there sometimes. However, I’ve seen that even my old hard-core LiveJournal friends have stopped posting there, and have headed to things like Facebook.

Facebook has tons of privacy issues which I couldn’t get around, really.  I go there to see pictures that family and friends post about once a week and don’t stay there long.

Last week I started poking around with Posterous and Tumblr. I really like Posterous very much – its presentation, format and features. It’s more like a blog. Tumblr is nice but seems more like StumbleUpon, with its photo sharing. I really love the inevitable discovery of amazing photos my Tumblr page, and I go there frequently for gorgeous eye candy. However, I’m realizing that what I want to do is blog again, in one place, available to whomever wants to see what I have to say.

I’d like this blog to be more about how to share what I do. I want to make short tutorials, creations, mini tutoring sessions. However, I still want to share the things I regularly share – stuff I learned, thoughts, links to cool sites or blogs. I’m also hoping to connect with new peoples’ blogs on WordPress. WordPress is a more full-featured professional blogging tool. I do have a website at and I’ve used that over the years to post little things I’ve designed, as well as doing a bit of blogging. That’s been slacking off as well. Additionally sometimes I go and find my site down. Not sure how many visitors I’ve received to the site recently, but I just don’t have the motivation to upkeep a website all the time. It takes a lot of maintenance. I’m getting older, with less time for bothersome administrative things. I want more time to explore the new technologies that are coming, as well as wanting to spend time with my beautiful children. I hope they stay close to me always, but one never knows how life will go.

I’m looking forward to use WordPress as a one-stop shop for posting not only my interests, thoughts, ideas, photos, links, but also for private posts.  I hope this blog grows into everything I’d like it to be and that readers enjoy my posts as much as I enjoy reading theirs.