Dear Neglected Readers,

Winter. I hate it. I have such a hard time being interesting or interested in the world around me from November thru March. That’s why I haven’t written much here lately. Sorry but snow, gale speed winds, snow, and ice covered sidewalks, and snow really do a number on my creative forces. 

 

Stupid Crummy Snow. Grumble...

Stupid Crummy Snow. Grumble...

I took this picture with my Lomo Fish Eye camera. And once again – if you want to upload a lomography photo to your computer you need to ask the photo developer store to burn your photos onto a cd. (In fact, you may save a few dollars if you burn the photos rather than print them. I don’t bother printing anymore. Only the really really good shots that I want to frame.) Then just pop the cd into your computer and copy to whatever photo library app you use. I have an Apple computer so I use iphoto. It’s easy! 

 

But since it is March I’m trying hard to do right by vingada.com and write something current. Let’s see…

First off, I’m thinking about taking a digital photography class sometime this summer. I quite thoroughly adore my Nikon D40X and want to take better, more creative photos. And my Flickr account is looking kind of bare so I should head out once the thermometer is showing temps on the plus side. I also need to work on my Photoshop Element skills — they are seriously weak. One big BIG advantage about taking a photo class at a college is I can get a student card and then purchase the real live honest to goshness Photoshop with curves, levels and rendering for a song. 

I am looking incredibly forward to riding my bike. Oh my God! I miss bike riding!! My poor bike looks more like a coat and towel rack with the sweaters, hats, quick dry towels I use for swimming covering her sweet Shimano geared frame. And her tires are flat, the chain needs lubing, the brakes adjusting, and a general going over with my allen key collection to tighten all of her bolts. Then I will ride like the wind! Not much of a wind since I haven’t ridden since November turned into one of the snowiest Novembers in living history. So, it also looks like I will have to cut back on Starbucks Apple Fritters (mmmm, donuts – just typing that makes me drool) and start walking up stairs instead of looking for an elevator or escalator. 

Cats have been high on my mind the last few months. My mom’s cats Freddy and Belle make me laugh hysterically whenever I visit. I bought them catnip and a couple of paperbags and had much fun watching Freddy enjoy his cat high while destroying a Whole Foods bag. The Freddle takes much pride in his destruction prowess. You can see him measure up a bag or a box and watch as he decides just how he will render it into a pile of paper shreds. 

 

Freddie versus Bag. My money is on Freddie.

Freddie versus Bag. My money is on Freddie.

 

 

My best friend Jane suffered a terrible blow this January. Her beloved cat Whitney passed away at the age of 14. She was a great kitty. Whitney was truly a regal cat – she was a lovely deep black colour and she adored sleeping on her mom’s pillow. I got to babysit her a couple of times and she ignored me in a truly elegant manner. Her sister Jasmine has been doing her best to comfort Jane this past while. Jazzie is a truly bonkers cat — she has a great and terrifying hiss, and her fangs sink deep and hard into any annoying fleshy parts that pat her too much. Hey, I was warned. And my thumb is better now.

 

Jasmine in her carrier.

Jasmine in her carrier.

I went with Jane to the vet with Jasmine a couple of weeks ago. Jazzie needed her vaccinations and a general check up. She hissed like a demon cat and wouldn’t let the vet and technician examine her. They did manage to give her the vaccine shots but that was it. Yeah, she’s pretty fierce. Jane and I had a great afternoon and we managed to ignore the furious hissing cat sitting in the back seat of the cat.

So, this is a re-start to vingada.com!  I will end this post by listing a few of my latest obsessions:

1) Questionable Content. Is a great webcomic by Jeph Jacques featuring a fantastic cast of characters. I love their misadventures and I love Pint-size the very naughty robot. 

2) My ipod Touch. This thing is a miracle! I’ve had it for months but I can’t get enough of the apps. My latest favourite is TumiNeko or “Tower of Cats”. Basically you take cartoon cats out of a basket and stack them up as high as you can. Then they topple meowing and hissing! Yeah, I don’t get out much…

3) Starbucks apple fritters! Oh my goshness, they are deep fried delicious apple, sugary, frost dripped bundles of fatty happy goodness. And I have to give them up so I can fit in my bike shorts… crummy stupid tight shorts. 

4) My terrible and inept attempts at vegetarianism. I can’t call myself a vegetarian by any stretch of anyone’s imagination. But I’m going to try — how about a carnivorous vegetarian? No? Well, it’s constant work. I started really well in late September of 2008, had one lapse in October (Chipotle’s Carnita burrito, who could blame me?), did really well in November, December, and most of January. But failed miserably in February. I’m pretty sure a solid 2 weeks worth of steak and burgers knocks me out of the Vegetarian Club (if there’s one, I don’t know). I will try harder from now on. Just have to keep out of Chipotle and South Side Burger (oh heavens!).

Here is a nice series of photos I want to share with you. But don’t tell my mom, she hates these photos. I love them!

 

Mom holding up Freddie. I don't think he likes this.

Mom holding up Freddie. I don't think he likes this.

 

Freddie is soooo going to lose it. Heh heh heh!

Freddie is soooo going to lose it. Heh heh heh!

 

 

 

Freddy hates cuddling.

Freddy hates cuddling.

Oh God! That cracks me up every time I look at that shot. I took the photos with my cell phone (2 megapixels, not too bad) and I was completely involved with holding the phone steady and didn’t realize that Freddy was tired of posing. He went nuts and started savaging my mom. I have never laughed so hard in my life!

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How Can Such a Sweet Cat be so bad?

Freddy is my mom’s cat and she tells me all the time how ferocious he is. She claims he bites, scratches, and generally mauls her several times a day. What mom doesn’t say is how she loves to tease and tickle him until he responds with many bites and those swell kangaroo cat kicks. Ouch, but I can’t offer up much sympathy since she provokes it and actually enjoys the rough play. Fortunately so does Freddy.

Now, I’ve never experienced this from Freddy. When I come over it’s love and kisses and he curls up on my lap for a nap and cuddles. He is incredibly friendly and loves having his head rubbed and kissed. We get along just fine.

Several weeks ago I visited my mom and the cats (she also has a rather cranky Tabby named Belle who hates my very existence). My mom decided to rough house with Freddy while I snapped away. freddy-is-a-monster

I’m going to print this photo and frame it for my mom.

Had a great Facebook reunion yesterday!

 

I had a great day with Tracy wandering about Kensington Market yesterday. We managed a quick catch up on 20 years of missed experiences, had lunch, pie, and took photos of a car filled with plants and dirt and a couple of cats. We both posted photos to our Facebook pages and the conclusion I’ve come up with is we are still the same nutjobs we were in grade 8. Happy day!

 

It was a gorgeous day and Kensington Market had loads of people shopping and sightseeing. We visited a bike store (because I have a bike addiction), store that sold hats and purses (because Tracy has a purse addiction), Courage My Love to try on my hats and 1940s style gloves (and I tried on a lucha libre wrestling mask. It was surprisingly comfortable), a chocolate store (both of us are addicted) and then we settled with a couple of slices of pie on the patio of Wanda’s Pie in the Sky.

 

A really good use for a car

A really good use for a car

 

Bubbles! Gotta love bubbles!

Bubbles! Gotta love bubbles!

 

 

I had the chocolate pecan pie, Tracy had the mango cheesecake.

I had the chocolate pecan pie, Tracy had the mango cheesecake.

 

The pies never had a chance.

The pies never had a chance.

 

Cats are great sunworshippers. I can watch them for hours.

Cats are great sunworshippers. I can watch them for hours.

 

 

 

 

Another sunworshipper

Another sunworshipper

Busiest Day EVAH on vingada.com!

50 Vistiors today at vingada.com!

50 People have visited vingada.com today! The most people in one day! Wow!!

One thing I noticed in the “Search Engine Terms” listing, y’all have an obsession with cats and gelatin salad. Me too! Preferably in separate bowls, please. Also, many people do click on my blog links especially http://www.cuteoverload.com and http://www.icanhascheezburger.com. That’s great! These are two of my favourite sites. The people running them are hilarious and always find the best cat pictures. I should be so hard working.

The only search engine term I didn’t understand (and I don’t want to, I think) is “hamster cake”. Ewww! I hope this is a line of cute Japanese manga or anime characters because I really don’t think hamsters belong in a cake. Maybe given a nice cake-like treat, but definitely not actually baked in one. If you or someone you know wants to include hamster in a cake recipe, please, drop the nice hammy and call PETA. They will talk you out of it.

Anyway, thanks for visiting vingada.com! I have a bunch of photos I need to upload but have been lazier than a cat since Christmas. I’ll get to those very soon. Hopefully I can include some cats and jello and possibly even hamster pictures to my flickr account. This year I plan on including more of my bike commuting adventures in Toronto. I hope to even have a road trip! Ooooh! I’ll bring my camera and band-aids.

What I did on Christmas…

The SBC and I had a great, restful, and quiet Christmas Day. We packed up a picnic lunch and ate it in Starbucks (King and Yonge), walked west to Queen and Spadina to visit Queen Video (it was closed. It’s been open on other Christmas Days. But I can’t blame them for closing and having a nice retail free Christmas.). I took a handful of pictures (see Flickr), and we walked up Spadina. Chinatown Centre was open! And crazy busy! We wondered around for an hour until we got hungry. We continued up Spadina Avenue to Swatow north of Dundas. We passed a bunch of open shops and restaurants. I think I know what we are doing next Christmas! Helllloooo Furama! (Bakery cafe just north of the Chinatown Centre. Mmmmm, donuts.)

When we got home I fooled around with Comic Life on my Macbook Pro. I’ve had this laptop for a year but have never tinkered with Comic Life. The app gives you a choice of comic layouts, then you choose your photos, add text bubbles, and then export to iPhoto. This is my first try.

Fooling around with Comic Life

Now there is only New Year’s left of the Holidays. Yeah!  

Dear Santa,

I have been as good as I possibly can. I know, I know. I could do better, but then I wouldn’t get to eat as much chocolate or pinch as many attractive backsides.  

But, I hope you will accept my foibles and send me everything on my list. So not to overwhelm you or your talented elves, I shall give you an item a day until Christmas. If you send me everything on my Christmas list, I will tell everyone you truly exist, and make them bow down to your glory. 

Here is my first item. I’d like an Ashera cat.  

This kitty is first on my list because I really really really need a 30lb part wild cat.I mean, look at that face! Doesn’t it just scream “Snorgles!”

ashera.jpg

Okay, the kitty is saying “Hand over all of the tuna, or the couch gets it!”

But regardless, I can give this cat loads of love. I can walk him on a leash. And I don’t have the asking price of $22,000, so I need your assistance, Santa.

C’mon, do a woman a favour, and send me this cat. I have organic catnip waiting under the tree!