Sunday, December 25, 2011

Thursday, December 1, 2011

My new Cat Bed?

I have an eMac on my desk, just waiting for me to gut it and make a cat bed out of it...


then I saw this and so wish I had a techie friend who would make one for me!


eSleeper from Sam Cox on Vimeo.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Amy MacDonald...Music that makes my heart sing...

I had not ever heard of Amy before, but my sister sent me a link to a cute cat video, and her music was behind the video...so I spent the next hour searching youtube for her songs...Love them!

Here's the cat video link:


and with the German Philharmonic Orchestra...

Friday, November 11, 2011

Veteran's Day...Always Remember


When I was 14 years old, my favorite uncle was shot down in Vietnam, and the missing him is as strong today as it was when I was a child.








He will always be young in my mind, playing the trombone, driving a turquoise and cream Chevrolet Bel Air and taller than any adult I had ever seen. He left behind his wife (my favorite aunt) and a son and daughter, too.

When I moved from Oregon to Virginia, one of the first things I wanted to do was visit the Vietnam Memorial and find his name and put a picture of the car he had, as I had no photos of him. The memorial is the most moving place to be, and my favorite, if that is the right word, of all the monuments I have visited, because it is so evocative...black, somber, that feeling of going underground. But also such a wonderful tribute to those who never made it back to their homes, their families, their lives ahead of them...

I had never googled his name before, but I did one Memorial Day, and this is what I found...

Name: Ralph Carol Balcom, Jr.
Rank/Branch: O3/US Air Force
Date of Birth: 24 December 1933
Home City of Record: Seattle WA
Date of Loss: 15 May 1966
Country of Loss: North Vietnam (see text)
Loss Coordinates: 171200N 1064000E (XE100100)
Status (in 1973): Missing In Action
Category: 1
Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: F105D
Other Personnel In Incident: None Missing

Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 15 March 1991 from one or more of the following: raw data from U.S. Government agency sources, correspondence with POW/MIA families, published sources, interviews. Updated by the P.O.W. NETWORK 1998.

SYNOPSIS: Ralph Balcom Jr. was shot down over North Vietnam about 20 miles north of the Demilitarized Zone in Quang Binh Province. A radio signal indicated that Major Balcom had parachuted to the ground, but because of zero visibility at the time, search planes were not able to locate and rescue him.

Two months later a propaganda film appeared with a man Ralph's parents immediately recognized as their son being paraded down the streets of Hanoi. The U.S. Government later identified the man as a returned POW Kyle Berg, also from the state of Washington.

In November 1973, the Air Force discovered that Joint Casualty Resolution Center (JCRC) in Nakhon Phanom was carrying Balcom as a Prisoner of War while Defense Intelligence Agency carried him as Missing In Action. The Air Force directed JCRC to delete any reference pertaining to POW status in Balcom's files. Balcom's status was changed from Prisoner of War to Missing in Action, although analysts say today that JCRC records were the most accurate and complete because of their close proximity to the region.

JCRC also lists Balcom as being lost in Laos, not North Vietnam. The loss coordinates, 171200N 1064000E are in North Vietnam about 20 miles north of the DMZ. Grid coordinates XE100100 are located a few miles northwest of the Ban Karai Pass in Laos. It cannot be determined why there is a descrepancy in loss locations between agencies.

Today, over 45 years have passed since Ralph Balcom's last flight over Vietnam. His family is still not sure whether he is alive or dead. Over 10,000 reports of Americans still held captive have been received by the U.S. Isn't it time we brought these men home?
Ralph C. Balcom was promoted to the rank of Colonel during the period he was maintained a Prisoner of War and Missing in Action.

To my dear uncle...I will never forget.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Nine Eleven...Tens years, millions of tears...



May this memorial, as with the Viet Nam Veterans Memorial Wall, bring healing and solace to all of us. I know I will be there on my next visit to NYC...

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Heaven has a new Sax player...

RIP Clarence...You always gave me goosebumps...that'll never change even though you are gone...

Monday, May 30, 2011

Always Remember...Memorial Day 2011



When I was 14 years old, my favorite uncle was shot down in Vietnam, and the missing him is as strong today as it was when I was a child.


He will always be young in my mind, playing the trombone, driving a turquoise and cream Chevrolet Bel Air and taller than any adult I had ever seen. He left behind his wife (my favorite aunt) and a son and daughter, too.

When I moved from Oregon to Virginia, one of the first things I wanted to do was visit the Vietnam Memorial and find his name and put a picture of the car he had, as I had no photos of him. The memorial is the most moving place to be, and my favorite, if that is the right word, of all the monuments I have visited, because it is so evocative...black, somber, that feeling of going underground. But also such a wonderful tribute to those who never made it back to their homes, their families, their lives ahead of them...

I had never googled his name before, but I did on Memorial Day last year, and this is what I found...

Name: Ralph Carol Balcom, Jr.
Rank/Branch: O3/US Air Force
Date of Birth: 24 December 1933
Home City of Record: Seattle WA
Date of Loss: 15 May 1966
Country of Loss: North Vietnam (see text)
Loss Coordinates: 171200N 1064000E (XE100100)
Status (in 1973): Missing In Action
Category: 1
Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: F105D
Other Personnel In Incident: None Missing

Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 15 March 1991 from one or more of the following: raw data from U.S. Government agency sources, correspondence with POW/MIA families, published sources, interviews. Updated by the P.O.W. NETWORK 1998.

SYNOPSIS: Ralph Balcom Jr. was shot down over North Vietnam about 20 miles north of the Demilitarized Zone in Quang Binh Province. A radio signal indicated that Major Balcom had parachuted to the ground, but because of zero visibility at the time, search planes were not able to locate and rescue him.

Two months later a propaganda film appeared with a man Ralph's parents immediately recognized as their son being paraded down the streets of Hanoi. The U.S. Government later identified the man as a returned POW Kyle Berg, also from the state of Washington.

In November 1973, the Air Force discovered that Joint Casualty Resolution Center (JCRC) in Nakhon Phanom was carrying Balcom as a Prisoner of War while Defense Intelligence Agency carried him as Missing In Action. The Air Force directed JCRC to delete any reference pertaining to POW status in Balcom's files. Balcom's status was changed from Prisoner of War to Missing in Action, although analysts say today that JCRC records were the most accurate and complete because of their close proximity to the region.

JCRC also lists Balcom as being lost in Laos, not North Vietnam. The loss coordinates, 171200N 1064000E are in North Vietnam about 20 miles north of the DMZ. Grid coordinates XE100100 are located a few miles northwest of the Ban Karai Pass in Laos. It cannot be determined why there is a descrepancy in loss locations between agencies.

Today, over 45 years have passed since Ralph Balcom's last flight over Vietnam. His family is still not sure whether he is alive or dead. Over 10,000 reports of Americans still held captive have been received by the U.S. Isn't it time we brought these men home?

Ralph C. Balcom was promoted to the rank of Colonel during the period he was maintained a Prisoner of War and Missing in Action.

To my dear uncle...I will never forget.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Lilies are toxic to Cats!

All parts of the lily plant (leaves, petals, bulbs, even the pollen!)are considered toxic to cats and consuming even small amounts can be life threatening. Within a few hours of ingestion of the lily plant, a cat may vomit, become lethargic or develop a lack of appetite. These signs continue and worsen as kidney damage progresses. Without prompt and proper treatment by a veterinarian, the cat may develop kidney failure in 36 to72 hours.

I continue to be surprised at the number of people who do not know that the Easter Lily is one of the most toxic plants to cats, and how the plants are not labeled with warnings! This time of year, every grocery store has huge displays of Easter candy, baskets, egg decorating kits and yes, Easter Lilies...all ready to be put in the homes of unsuspecting cat owners!

There are many nice alternatives to having lilies in the house (most lilies are toxic to cats, but not seen inside homes as often). Orchids, Easter cactus and violets are options, as are lovely artificial silk lilies.

Here is a link to more info:
CLICK HERE

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Chipmunk in Slo-Mo

I promise to get back to my human blog soon as my basement is in order...til then, this will make you smile!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Adopt the Internet Day at Petfinder.com!

Petfinder Adopt-the-Internet Day

More than 320,000 pets are waiting for homes on Petfinder.com. Help Petfinder Adopt the Internet today and find forever homes for as many as possible!

One of them is Rudy, a special needs Cornish Rex, that is seeking a furrever home!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

To help the animals in Japan...

For those of you on Facebook, there is a new group, Japan Earthquake Animal Rescue and Support, that is reporting new about the animals affected by the earthquake. Animal Friends Niigata, HEART Tokushima, and Japan Cat Network are working as a team to try to get as much help to as many animals as they can. Here is a link to their page:

Japan Earthquake Animal Rescue and SupportLink

Here is a link to their Chip In:

japanearthquakeanimalrelief.chipin.com

For those of you not on Facebook, there is a group in the USA that is posting updates, too:


If you are looking for worldwide organizations to donate to, here are 2 recommended by PetConnection.com:


SearchDogFoundation.org

and one I donated to during the Haiti earthquake:


My heart aches for the pets there, who depend on us to be their caretakers and advocates. One sad story posted on Japan News Network told of a petshop caught up in the flood in Sendai. It showed a kitten in a box on a table crying while the shop owner closed the sliding door on the shop saying, 'I'm closing it now in hopes it will keep more water from getting in.'

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Remember the Lambada?

J-Lo's new video... And the original...I'd rather be on the beach, wouldn't you?



Tuesday, February 22, 2011

February 22, 2007...


Have four years passed? How have I survived losing you, my love? I have survived because knowing you has helped me be strong.


I have come to where I look forward to the future, from time to time, because I know you would want me to be happy to be alive.


I, like so many who knew you, say 'What would Mike do' when the going gets tough.


How can I stay in the home you and I shared? Because here, we were kind of separate people. You knew I had a laundry list of things I would like to change in you, but when I asked about me...you'd say 'Nothing worth mentioning'...


It was when we traveled and sought out French restaurants, the smallest English Pub and brought along things to make our trips 'exciting'..that is when I truly miss you, Mike. Who else, when in front of the White Hart Pub in England, would joke while I was filming it, say 'Here we are at the White Fart...


I have found a wonderful therapist (through my cats, that would make you smile) and she has helped me be happy here, to treasure what we shared...and knows I can make a life for myself, even when I don't want to move on...


and know that whatever memories I make in the future, that a part of you will be there, too. I can't sit out on my mom's deck without feeling you there; I can't make that drive back and forth to work each day without remember us doing it together, me dozing-you driving; I can't hold a kitten in my hands without thinking of you sharing that joy with me...


When I see myself now, I see me...not me and you as I assumed my future would include. Funny, part of me married you for security...and 2 months later, you lost your job...


I see the cats, and I see you with them and the friends who, even those who never met you, feel as if they have, because you are here, with me...


You bought me my dream car, a Jaguar XJS


and then we went to Coventry together; You bought your first Canali suit at Harrod's and we were at the Helston Furry Dance together...because we loved each other, we shared the good and the bad, and were stronger for it...



You said I was the best cat breeder you had ever met, still it took me many years to add your name to 'my' cattery...when we passed the 5 year mark together (as long as any of my previous relatiionships had lasted), I thought we would grow old together...


You surprised me with a trip to NYC for Christmas, and every time I visit there, you are there with me...and I am trying to make new memories of things we hadn't shared, or I wish you were there.

We made a snow cat, we traveled around the country, making a show cat, we were made for each other and others saw that in us, too...



Here is the blog page that a friend made the week that Mike died...One page speaks volumes and friends shared about the man they knew.

Mike's Memorial

Mike will always be 58 to me and as I turn 59...I think of how we all remember Marilyn Monroe as young and of that song, Forever Young...sometimes I feel old without you, Mike...




I will love you, always...I will miss you by my side always...I want you to know that, I know you knew that...

I didn't do a post on this day last year...

but did in 2009 and blogging is a journal and shows me to where I have come...

Monday, February 14, 2011

Love is What's Inside...Set it Free

...They say Valentine's Day is the day for lovers. Perhaps we need to rethink what Valentine's Day is all about. Just open your heart and let the love out...you and whoever you share that part of you with will benefit from it!