Frog Collectibles & Other Such Nonsense: 03/01/2008 - 04/01/2008

Frog Collectibles & Other Such Nonsense

A look at my frog collectibles as I get them and my wacky world in the meantime.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Frog of the Day

Chocolate Frog
Originally uploaded by KenCalvino
It was a really nice weekend here at Frog Central - although rainy, but I'm getting used to that. I went out to a rummage sale saturday morning and made a trip around the dollar store. While the Frog Wrangler was out and about a tiny little bird - no more than 3 or 4 inches long - landed on the railing right next to the door. It was so happy to get out of the rain. It tucked it's head back under it's wing and promptly went to sleep. I wish I had my camera on hand. It stayed there until the Wrangler came back inside - off it flew, hopefully a little refreshed.

By the time you read this, this frog will be gone - I'm sure it will be delicious! This is a chocolate frog lollipop. It came from a local chocolatier near my parents. Yum!

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Earth Hour

Tonight at 8 p.m. for one hour, people are being asked to turn off their lights in the house. Earth Hour was started last year in Australia and this year has spread to over 400 cities around the world. Let's all save a bit of energy and reduce the carbon footprint a bit and turn off our lights for one hour.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Friday Dog Blogging

Originally uploaded by KenCalvino
The Frog Wrangler and I both took a pain killer this morning so we're just starting to really get around today. The Wrangler has, for the most part, had a really good week. She had a number of baths this week with all the rain we've been having here. As long as there is a towel handy when she gets back in, she'll endure getting wet. Taking as aspirin every day has turned the clock back a bit. She's coming to me with her toys wanting to play and even will get up the bed for a bit in the evening. Of course, her chair is her most favorite place to spend the night. Here she is, having just finished her duty of keeping a watch out the windows to be sure the homefront is safe. A duty she takes very seriously. I get notification from her when something happens two blocks away - just in case I wanted to know.

Have a good weekend. I have a couple Radko items coming in today and tomorrow, so I look forward to sharing them when they arrive.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Dancing Frog Video

This is the first video I've ever done so I'll apologize ahead of time. This is the Dancing Frog plush that I listed a while ago and said that it gave me and AB quite a chuckle every day. So here goes - enjoy!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Is it really Wednesday already?

Another week is just flying by. I think as we get older time seems to move a bit faster. I don't know why, but I've also been thinking of things I ate as a kid and trying to recreate some of them - all of which have been a disaster. As a kid my grandmother used to feed us kids mayonnaise and brown sugar sandwiches. Ugh! Even writing it makes me a bit queasy. But as a kid I couldn't wait until late evening when this treat would appear. It's no wonder we hardly ever slept at grandma's - all that sugar had us bouncing off the walls! So on a bet a friend and I made one of these sandwiches - Oh My Lord! How we ever ate them as kids I'll never know. Then I got the bright idea of making some macaroni and cheese, and slicing up a couple hot dogs into it. Yuck! And in my bid to get rid of the remaining hot dogs I had left in the house I bought some crescent rolls to wrap the hot dogs. One bite was all it took. So last night was garbage night which provided a quick disposal of my attempts at childhood foods. I think tonight I'm going to have a big juicy steak, baked potato, and some steamed vegetables - now that's a good meal. Funny, I would have turned my nose up at that as a kid......

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Frog of the Day

Galerie - Jelly Bean
Originally uploaded by KenCalvino
The electric finally came back on - but it's done that about a dozen times this morning and then flickered right back off. Hopefully things will be a little more stable for the rest of the day. I'm tired of trying to keep the clocks set, so every one has a different time. It's a bit chilly here today - only in the 30's - so the Frog Wrangler is keeping to the heating vents. I'll take my jacket off in a bit. I received some new frog yesterday, so here's the first.

This frog is from Galerie and is called Jelly Bean. He is a frog that is trying to spread the Easter cheer. He has a bag of Jelly Beans ready to be put into a basket. This a cute little plush that will make a nice addition to the collection.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter

Kitchen Aid
Originally uploaded by KenCalvino
Well the Easter bunny arrived and look what he brought me! How did he know I needed a new mixer. I burned out the last one making my last batch of fruitcake over this last Christmas season. I like the Kitchen Aid because it has a switch that won't let it overheat - it will automatically shut off. This is their professional model - the 600 series - and has a good size, 6 quart bowl. With a large number of rebates, coupons, and finding it on sale - you won't believe this - I paid about one-third the retail price! I can't wait to start baking!

The weather here turned a bit colder over this weekend. Yesterday there were some threats of snow, but thankfully none materialized. I went out to the pharmacy to pick up a prescription and to swing by the post office. I didn't leave early enough to hit the bank, so I missed one of the first barbecues of the season. Oh well, there's another one next weekend......

Hope everyone has a Happy Easter - enjoy the chocolate. There was a special on the food channel last night that told how a lot of the Easter candy is made - really interesting. And the majority of people will eat the ears of the chocolate bunnies first. Hey, a good idea..... but I think I'd rather have some breakfast first. Today is going to be a pancake and sausage day. I haven't made them in a while.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Friday Dog Blogging

Originally uploaded by KenCalvino
The Frog Wrangler has had a pretty good week. She's been much more comfortable since I started giving her a baby aspirin every day. It's been good to see her able to climb back up into her chair to take a nap. She's even been taking to climbing up on the bed via her steps. Here she is in her favorite chair - I woke her up taking some pictures and she lifted her head as if to say "I'm ready for my close-up." Or rather "Are you done yet? Let me get back to sleep!"

I had laid down to take a nap this afternoon too when the UPS guy walked in. I swear I have to start locking the door! I do at night, but unluck it during the day and leave it that way until I go to bed. This is the second time he's done it and it scares the crap out of me.

The Frog Wrangler and I hope you have a good weekend and a Happy Hoppy Easter.

Spring is here

Originally uploaded by KenCalvino
The daffodils started opening up yesterday - just a few to acknowledge that spring has arrived. It's a bit chilly today - a little further north they are getting snow! Here in southern Illinois we're waiting for the all the rivers to crest on saturday. They say about 16 people have died because of the flooding. I know near here a truck with three people went around a road closed barrier and were swept off the road. I guess having grown up near the Susquehanna river I tend to be a little more wary of traveling into waters rushing over roads. It takes very little water to sweep a car down stream. They say that thousands of roads are still closed and will be for some time. Even after the waters recede, bridges and roads have to be checked to be sure they are safe. I think the Frog Wrangler and I will stay inside and enjoy the daffodils out the window, watching the birds eating seeds in the hibiscus hedge, and laughing at the squirrels chasing each other around the yard.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Snow Squirrel

Snow Squirrel
Originally uploaded by KenCalvino
I've posted pictures here before of these cute little snow squirrels that are common in this area. One has taken up residence in the trees in my yard but I had been unable to get a picture of him. Today I was looking out the window at the rain still coming down when lo and behold, here comes my little snow squirrel. He found something in the yard to keep him busy because he stayed right there while I got my camera out and took about a half dozen pictures or so. He seemed to get a bit antsy that I was watching him so I closed the blinds and let him go back to enjoying his meal.

More rain again today

Here at Frog Central, located in southern Illinois, we had 10 to 12 inches or rain yesterday and last night. It was still raining lightly this morning when the Frog Wrangler went out - on the upside she smells really nice after getting a number of "showers" - the weather forecast is for the rain to pick up through the afternoon and last through into the evening. The news has had some really dramatic pictures. Most everything around here is shut down because you simply can't get to it. I feel sorry for the school kids because they'll be going to school all summer to make up for all the days they've had off. One local school has already cancelled their spring break to make up a number of the days. Police are again telling people to stay home and off the roads.

I know when I went out yesterday afternoon a lot of the road were flooding - things are very flat here. So add even more water through the evening and overnight - yikes! My car would disappear. Any plans I had for today I decided to cancel and follow the police pleas and stay home. The Frog Wrangler will be happy for that (she's currently pulled her pillow over the heating vent and is laying on top of it - nice to have warm place to lay down).

I'm still a bit awed (and a bit freaked out) that I heard from the Christopher Radko headquarters - kind of cool, huh?

Frog of the Day

Radko - Majesty's Kiss
Originally uploaded by KenCalvino
So I told you that Christopher Radko's ornaments were back in production and to keep an eye out for the latest limited edition frog piece. Guess what? Apparently my little blog came to the attention of the Radko people and they sent me a picture to use on the blog. So here goes -

This frog collectible is from Christopher Radko and is called Majesty's Kiss. It is a limited edition piece. Many places are starting to take pre-orders and I would suggest highly that you take advantage of that option. Marie at Radko will let me know when the piece will be available and I'll pass that information on to you as soon as I get it.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Blogger is having problems

But I will have a major update tomorrow - you'll want to be sure to check it out. Hint: This little corner of the world has been noticed!

I spent today at the doctors office going over all the details of the MRI results and what has to be done from here. Now I have to go off to two specialists to get their input and then I guess the details will be finalized. Ugh! I've heard such horror stories of back surgery and so hopefully that will not enter into the options list. After the doctors I had to get the Frog Wrangler some treats. On the way home I stopped at DQ and got a treat for myself - I love those Blizzard treats. If you sign up for the Blizzard Club on-line you get a coupon for buy one - get one free. That's one in the freezer for later. Is it later yet.........

Monday, March 17, 2008

Radko Alert

If you remember, last year the Radko production fell through in the early fall. Turns out there was a nasty court battle between Christopher Radko and a company that bought the rights to making the ornaments. After much corporate battling things appear to be somewhat settled and new ornaments are being produced. There are a couple new Frog Ornaments already including a limited edition frog - which as soon as it arrives will be showcased here. So if you are a Radko collector, do check back in with the websites or stores that you frequent as they should have the new ornaments in stock soon.

Monday, Monday

It's Monday already. The weekend seemed to fly by and I don't think I really got much done. Yesterday I spent running the vacuum cleaner. It always amazes me just how much dog hair comes up. I had to run a couple of errands this morning. I got home and returned a call to the doctor for the results of the MRI. Seems there's a bit of a problem with a couple discs that are pressing on nerves. So now he wants to send me to some specialists up in Springfield. Ugh! It's a never ending spiral isn't it? I have to meet with him tomorrow afternoon with a decision as to what I want to do. What I'd like to do is absolutely nothing but with the pain I'm in I'm afraid that's not an option.

A bit of rain here today but as the daylilies are starting to poke through a bit, I'm sure it's much needed. It's hard to believe that when the change from winter to spring happens, it happens fast. It won't be much longer before the daffodils are blossoming. The Frog Wrangler and I are eagerly looking forward to spending more time outside.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Friday Dog Blogging

Originally uploaded by KenCalvino
The Frog Wrangler has had a really good week. She's at times acted like her puppy self so many years ago. She found one of her favorite toys that had sat unplayed with for quite a while and dragged it out and has been carrying it all over the house. Like finding an old friend. She's been shedding like crazy as the warmer weather seems to finally be here for good.

This last week I noticed that robins have appeared in the yard. This morning a pair of cardinals were out playing on the bench. They looked smaller than the large male cardinals I've seen previously so I wonder if these were babies fresh out of the next. The Wrangler was a bit upset by the white squirrel today - it decided that my tree was where it wanted to hang out - on a low hanging branch from where it could taunt the Wrangler with impunity.

Yesterday for the MRI I had to lie on my back which is something I haven't done in years and years - it's just too painful. So my back is paying me back in spades today. Every move has been painful, so I finally took a pain killer. After it kicked in I decided to go to Walmart - I was in desperate need of a mat for the computer mouse - remember when you used to get them everywhere free? I paid 3 bucks at Walmart. At least I'm no longer swearing at the mouse every time I use While I was at Walmart I decided that I better buy some Easter candy. Can you believe that both St. Patrick's Day and Easter are this next week?

Have a good weekend!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Thursday Afternoon

Is it only afternoon. I'm going in to take a nap very shortly but wanted to put up a quick entry. Yesterday here was excellent - almost 70 degrees! I went out in the morning to get the car serviced. A quick oil change and all the fluid levels and tire pressures checked. The best $24 you can spend on your car. So everything was set for the MRI this morning. I was up a little after 4 this morning to pack up and get on the road by 5:30. It was a 2 hour drive over to the hospital - the place is very impressive - and it was nice to be back in a bigger city. Malls and shopping everywhere you looked. I wish I had a week to look around!

I can now say I know what sausage feels like being shoved into the casing. Good Lord! The technician said that it would be a tight fit - that was the understatement of the century! I kept expecting them to run the machine back and forth to force me in. But I slid right in and my nose was about 2 inches from the top of the tube. I know why people who are claustrophic have problems with that test. I thought I was going to freak out! Modern medicine is wonderful, isn't it? I was in there for a little over an hour. It took two people to get me back upright (and a bit of a scream or two - what I've come to calling screamercise - I told them not to worry, it happens every morning trying to get out of bed - they started laughing so hard I thought they were going to lose me on to the floor!).

So the Frog Wrangler was not happy I was gone for a full six hours. And that is quite a bit of time for her to go without an outside trip. She made a quick bee-line for the door, but didn't stay out long as she wanted to check me over. I think we both now need a nap. Later.......

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Frog of the Day

Walmart - Dancing Frog
Originally uploaded by KenCalvino
It's been a busy day, but the Wrangler and I took some time out after lunch to go out and sit on the bench and soak up some sun. The temperatures here are in the 50's and it feels wonderful. I can hardly wait for the 70's! I spent a bit of time today ordering on-line - the Frog Wrangler is running out of her pills - 1 bottle is now up to $75! I remember when I used to bay $20 not to long ago. I got some forever stamps - remember the price of stamps is going up in May. I am down to my last stamp anyway, so I thought I might as well get a hundred - that should last me for a bit.

Well wishes to AB on her hand surgery tomorrow!

This frog item has brought more laughter than you can possibly imagine. I have to get a video recorder for this one - whoever is singing "Deck the Halls" on it sounds like they took a bit hit of helium - after getting totally plastered - and then recorded it. I will do my best to get some video of this. Every time AB calls we have to play it at least a dozen times and we absolutely howl every time! It is from Walmart and I received this last month. It is animated and dances back and forth while singing.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Monday, Monday

What a day today after a nice relaxing weekend. Both good news and bad news. I'm finally scheduled for the MRI of my back - I have to be there Thursday morning at 8 a.m. - it's a 2 hour drive from home...... ugh! I'm having some difficulty getting my lift chair - insurance will only pay a small portion of the $1200.00 price tag. So I'm afraid that will be on the back burner for now.

I heard from NC - she was rushed back to surgery last night because of a bleeding problem, but seems to be doing much better today. Now I hear from AB that she's going into surgery on Wednesday! I swear we're all falling apart as we get older.....

It was nice here today - temps this week are going to be in the 50's for the majority of the week - a much needed reprieve from the ice and snow. The downtown was bustling with activity as people emerged to take advantage of the nice weather. All that fresh air has left me exhausted. I think the Wrangler and I are going to go take a little nap. Tomorrow should be a new frog!

Friday, March 07, 2008

Friday Dog Blogging

Originally uploaded by KenCalvino
I spoke (wrote) to early this morning aout the power - it was out here almost all afternoon. It's really getting to be quite an annoyance! The Frog Wrangler, who hangs near the television when she's sleeping - I think the noise vibration gives her comfort, since she can barely hear. With the house all quiet she ran over to me as if to say what's going on - and you'll protect me, right? Overall, she's had a pretty good week. I decided this week that instead of waiting for her to acting as if she was in pain it was just easier to put her on a low dose aspirin regimen. She's seems to be a lot more content as a result. She's due to go to the vets for her yearly shots in the next couple of weeks and have an overall check up.

Here's hoping that you all have a good weekend. I can't believe it's finally here after such a busy week!


It turns out, according to last night paper, that here at Frog Central we ended up being pretty lucky. As of last night almost 350 houses were still without power - that's a full 3 days with temperatures in the 20 to 40 degree range. Brrr! The Frog Wrangler was nonplussed by all the excitement - all she knew was that a giant branch was in her way when she wanted to go out. Thankfully that, as well as much of the rest of the smaller branches all over the yard got picked up. Things have slowed down a bit. This afternoon I should be receiving, finally, my prescriptions for the MRI on my back and the lift chair. With the condition of my back going from bad to worse I hope I'll be able to get in for the MRI early this next week.

A friend of mine, NC, is on her way into surgery and I want to wish her good luck and a speedy recovery. I should also give well wishes to MG and his entire family who are down with the flu - they say this year's version of the flu is really bad, and from the sounds, they're getting the full effect.

I woke up this morning listening to the radio - NPR, of course - which originates about an hour due south. They were talking about snow on the ground - up to five inches or more by the time it's all done. I didn't want to get out of bed. But lo and behold - no snow here! It all stayed just south of here. You gotta love it when the snow stays south and the warmer temps to the north.....

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

What a week!

Things look a bit better this morning. The roofer showed up late last night and said that no damage had been done to the roof. This morning the tree service will be here to take away the tree branch. I was out talking with the roofer while he was here and he said that he had been taking large branches out of roofs most of the day. Late last night I looked out and the light from the street lamps reflected on all that ice in the trees - beautiful but dangerous (but isn't that always the way). While The Wrangler went out it was amazing to hear all the ice falling everytime the wind blew. At first I thought it was still sleeting but it was just the ice breaking and falling out of the trees. This morning the sunlight did much the same as the street lamps last night, but on a much grander scale. The trees are just glistening, totally encased in ice. Today the temps are supposed to get to near 40, so the ice should be gone by this afternoon for the most part and this whole episode will be behind me and maybe we can get back to a more sedate week - please!

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Tree branch that fell on house

OK, so here's a picture of the branch - about 12 feet long that fell onto the house. I had to give it a bit of a shove to get it off the ramp. You can see all the ice that fell off with it - it is very slippery out there. So now I'm waiting to here about this behemoth's removal and they're coming to check to be sure the roof didn't get damaged. It's all such fun.....

OMG! A tree fell on the house!

I was working on the computer when I heard a loud banging against the house - and lo and behold one of the larger branches fell off the tree onto the house. I'm sure I'll have pictures of this soon!

Ice covered trees

Ice covered trees
Originally uploaded by KenCalvino
The branches of the trees all look white - that's ice which has covered the branches. Brrr! The storms seem to have all moved off to the east without giving us the 10 inches of snow. That's great news. Hopefully the ice won't last more than a day or two.

Power Problems

Things have been spotty here with electric since Saturday, so I'll make this a short entry in hopes I finish and get it posted before the power flickers again. I've given up trying to correct the clocks so I have no idea what time it is. The wind has been pretty strong and I guess the power lines can't take it - I still don't understand why they haven't buried the lines. It rained here all day yesterday and into last night when it switched to ice. The Frog Wrangler went outside and lawn sloped down from the front door to the car - and it was the car that finally stopped her slide this morning. She was not happy at all!

Well thank goodness for automatic saving by blogger - it's been about 3 hours since I wrote the above entry. The power went out again and came on again about 10 minutes ago. The temp dropped about 4 or 5 degrees in the house - enough that I had just put on my light jacket and a hat. The Frog Wrangler was antsy without the television on - hmmm, makes you think. I run it through the day just for noise in the background and to keep up on the news (I usually have CNN on most of the day - except for my Young and the Restless).

I have some pictures that I'll load up this afternoon to see how they came out - pictures of the trees and shrubbery just coated with ice. The last time the Wrangler went out large chunks were falling out of the tree onto the car and driveway. Thank goodness we have a great electric crew here in town to get things back up and running. Now on to today - and remember - if you live in a state that's voting today, get out there and cast your ballot.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

A quiet Sunday morning

Things have been a little lazy here this morning. I was up about 6 a.m. and spent some time outside on the bench - it was that warm here. The Frog Wrangler had fun sniffing around and checking to be sure all her areas were still her own (there has been a dog running loose from down the street that has marked a couple of her bushes - and the funniest thing ever has been watching her trying to cover up those markings with her own). I love sitting there and listening to the birds. A flock of geese flew overhead honking for all they were worth. A beautiful sound and hopefully another harbonger of spring. I also heard the mourning doves for the first time in a while. Of course the shrill call of the cardinals is a near constant. And while finches and chicadees played in the hibiscus hedge, the rat-a-tat of woodpecker was working furiously in the neighbors tree. I was glad to see the woodpecker back. It was here right after I first moved in and it was hysterical to watch it pecking away all day at a telephone pole. The only thing that would have made this cacophony of sound complete would have been some deep croacking of some frogs. Maybe as the weather gets warmer.

I can't wait to get out and do some cleaning up in the flower beds. AB told me her bulbs are starting to push through and so I had to go check on mine and indeed the daffodils are up about an inch. The daylillies are just beginning to poke through. All signs point to spring and after getting the heating bill yesterday - it can't come too soon!

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