Saturday, November 12, 2011


We've been living with a problem that drives us both insane.

Our cats climb up in our closet.

They pull themselves up with the clothes on hangers which results in claw snags in clothes or clothes all on the floor in a crumpled mess.

They like to sleep in the folded clothes on a shelf above the hanging clothes... that equals more clothes pulled down and layers upon layers of cat hair all over everything. 

It's been this way for years.  We try to keep the closet doors closed and the cats dig and dig and dig until they open the sliding door enough to wedge themselves back in.

And then one night channel surfing, I saw this show on Animal Planet called My Cat From Hell.... the solution to many of the cat issues was to build them high spots.  And so I did.  Furry Husband was skeptical when I told him about my grand plan since he didn't see the show and wasn't sure just what in the hell I was talking about...

One night when he was at a wine tasting event I built this:

He got home and he helped me finish it... I bought a 1x12 at Home Depot and had them cut a 4' length for above our window and two 1' lengths to use as stepping stones....I covered them with soft, on sale, fleece material from a fabric store.

We ended up only using one step.  A dog kennel is next to the dresser... step 1.

The shadow box on the dresser is screwed into the wall for stability... cat step 2.

There is a step mounted to the wall... cat step 3.

From there, they have their choice of the box filled with the left over fleece material or the fleece covered ledge with a kitty cup.

I sprinkled a little catnip on the ledge and the cat step number 3.

They are using it vs. our closet! 

Score 1 for the hoo-mans.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Tied Up...

Well... I took Sera to Rex's for a ride last Saturday. 

I went out to get her and she was hot, sweaty and blowing.  The horses have been kept in their pens because of the huge amount of snow we got in 2 different storms.  Pretty much everything is, or was, muddy, slick and icy.  We didn't need the horses out running like wild jungle animals, slipping and injuring themselves or tearing up the pasture.

She and Rosso had been fruiting around because they are bored and pent up and it's cold and they feel good.

I unloaded her at Rex's and she was tying up pretty good.  Sigh.  Called the vet and she was there in 30 min... steroid and non-steroid anti-inflammatories given.  A dose of ace to relax and get blood flowing to the muscles... some laser treatment.  Still took at least an hour before Sera could walk again and she was still sticky on the left hind.

She hadn't tied up since November 2008. 

Caught me by complete surprise.  Last time she tied up I was feeding 100% alfalfa from another hay supply source... we stopped and she hadn't tied up since.  I figured that was the cause.

Since Sera had been penned up from the storms, we cut the Purina Healthy Edge complete feed back by half.  (They only get 1lb in the AM and 1lb in the PM with loose mineral salt)  And we gave them some extra hay at night since it was our first true cold snap and they don't have woolly winter coats yet.  It's a grass hay with a tiny bit of alfalfa - whatever grows in the pasture when the hay is harvested.  We've gotten it consistently from the same hay supplier - same fields since 2008 - nothing different about the hay.

It's quite disappointing. 

I ordered some Platinum Hemo-Flo supplement which is supposed to have good results for horses that tie up... ??  I'm never really sure if supplements are truly helpful or if they are just good marketing?  Anyone have thoughts about that?

I think Theresa asked about the new lifestyle Furry Husband and I are working on...
The book is:  The Primal Blueprint by Mark Sisson - very good, easy read, and explains more the why of eating and living this way.  He just released a new book, that in my opinion is maybe a little more condensed, a little updated and more of a specific "how to" vs. "why to".  It's the 21-Day Challenge or something... both are good reads.

There is a website tho' that is free which offers lots of information for anyone looking... 

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Pizza experiment....

We've been eating primal (no grains or legumes) for 30 days as of October 30.  Part of us trying the primal eating for 30 days, was to experiment once the 30 days were over with a grain based meal to see how it made us feel. 

We brought home a Cozzola's take and bake pizza, cooked it up after chores... consumed it..... felt fine.  The world did not crash around us.  We were not ill.  We felt perfectly fine.....

UNTIL 2:00AM rolled around.

We were both wide awake, tossing and turning, and could NOT for the life of us get any sleep.  We finally gave up the fight and got up at 5:00 to go walking with the dogs under the stars...

Doesn't really make me want to try grains again any time soon.  Since eating primally, I have slept soundly, all night, every night vs. waking up at 2 or 3 AM probably 4 nights out of 7.  And the nights I did sleep were Tylenol PM induced.  I very rarely slept a night without something to keep me knocked out.

I'd gone to the Dr. for some pretty severe depression this summer along with the sleep deprivation to have my hormone levels checked out.  My hormones were ok but my my adrenals were high (why I was waking up in the middle of the night unable to sleep) and my B vitamins super, super low (why I felt so terrible all summer).  

I go to a more wholistic Dr., and they offer the option of working with herbal supplements if you want to go that route via diving right into Western meds.  Tho they offer the Western meds if you want them. 

I started taking an herbal supplement to calm my adrenals... and I got a B vitamin shot once a week for a month to get my B levels back up.  After that, I took a sub-lingual B supplement.

I haven't taken either supplement for a couple weeks.  I stopped the adrenal supplement right around the time we started eating primal.... and I sleep.  Oh how I sleep! I sleep sound and it is THE most glorious feeling to get sleep all night, every night.

I'm really liking the variety of veggies, fruits and proteins from fish, meat, chicken, eggs.   Yum!  We've tried brussel sprouts, rutabagas, turnips, mashed cauliflower... all sorts of good things. 

I'm never hungry, I don't count calories, I don't watch my portions... I eat full fat dairy, cook in butter, use olive oil and coconut oil vs. man made or grain/legume oils like corn, canola, peanut or vegetable oils.   I have even energy all day long, no lulls or tired afternoons for me any more....

It's been a pretty interesting 30 days.  I feel GOOD.  I feel HAPPY.  I feel AWAKE. 

I'm going to start with some exercise body movements to give me functional strength... I don't have goals to be amazingly ripped like Linda Hamilton from the Terminator movie... however, I'd like to be able to do the stuff I want to do easily and handily without much of a struggle.

I started today with some squats, plank and girlie knee pushups.  I'm so weak it's a little sad.  But hey, we all gots to start somewhere. 

We'll see how things progress...

Besides it's been so muddy, mucky, snowy, icy with the 2 storms we've gotten, I've got some extra time for evaluating how weak I am and trying to fix it.  grin.

I go to the Dr. for another blood draw to evaluate B levels... I'm guessing they are gonna be pretty good based on how great I feel.