Frog Collectibles & Other Such Nonsense: 06/01/2009 - 07/01/2009

Frog Collectibles & Other Such Nonsense

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

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Silent Night

I actually woke up a couple of times because the house was so quiet - for the first time in a couple of weeks the air conditioner wasn't running full blast. Even the attic fan was off. Gertie and I spent some time outside this morning enjoying the hibiscus which are in full bloom. They attract a lot of butterflies which fascinated Gertie to no end.

The neighbors, some of who just mowed their lawns a couple days ago, are spending the day in their lawn competition. When one starts mowing the others come out of the woodwork to do theirs too, afraid someone will have a better looking lawn than theirs. I know they must look over at my lawn in disgust - I have a lawn guy who comes every two weeks. And to tell you the truth I think I have the nicest looking lawn overall. One neighbor has a sweeper attachment for his mower and he sweeps his lawn almost daily - which has turned a large portion of it yellow. The others just mow too often and as we get out of the rainy season and into the dry, hot days of summer their abused lawns can't cope.

Now I'm off to locate some Goatein. It's supposed to be very good for you - I'll reserve judgment until I taste it......

Monday, June 29, 2009

Relief, Finally

The weather finally broke yesterday. The temps were only in the upper 80's. Today they are even a bit cooler, the humidity is lower, and a nice breeze is blowing. I can hardly wait for tonight when the overnight temps are supposed to drop back in to the high 50's. It is such a relief. While my computer was going through a major upgrade this morning (it took almost all morning!) I decided to spend some quality time outside with Gertie. She was loving it! The ability to run around without all that heat really made her day. She's sleeping at my feet, all tired out.

The end of June has arrived and July 4th will soon be here. Some of the local kids have already started setting off fire crackers. This is the first year I've heard locals with fireworks. The town puts on a pretty good display in the local park. It's about 2 miles away but the booms can be heard here at Frog Central. In the past I've stayed home because Shadow got really nervous about them going off - Gertie seems to be the same in that regards. Besides, it's one of those events that the whole town turns out for and you can't get near the place unless you go really early to get a spot. I don't feel like sitting there all afternoon to see 20 minutes of fireworks.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Day 10 of the Heat Wave

The weatherman said today that today was the 10th day that we've had a heat index of 100 or more. This morning at 9:30 as I headed out to run a couple errands the heat index was already 102 - and extremely humid. I was out for about an hour and came home needing another shower. I think I finally recovered from the experience. I think before next summer I need to get a new car - one that has a working air conditioner.

The heat has even gotten to Gertie. She's walking around like a zombie this afternoon - not quite sure what to do with herself other than flop over near the air conditioning grates. Last night I was sitting in the chair and she crawled up in my arm and put her head on my shoulder and fell asleep. Today she's just too miserable to chase around with a camera, so I'm giving her the day off.

The heat wave is supposed to continue for at least another couple days, tomorrow being the hottest. Hopefully we'll finally have some relief by Monday. My air conditioner has run non-stop for the last 10 days - I am not looking forward to the electric bill at all. But you have to be comfortable. The news had a story of a woman who died in her apartment because her air conditioner broke and she was trying to keep cool with an oscillating fan. In this heat I just couldn't imagine it. Chicago has a great effort to check on everyone - after a brutal heat wave some years ago killed hundreds.

Was shocked to hear of the death of Michael Jackson yesterday. It was indeed a tragedy, and maybe I'm being insensitive, but did it really require 24 hour coverage on all the news channels. It was kind of nice watching MTV and they were actually playing music videos though!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Temps nearing 100 degrees today

It just doesn't cool down. This morning, at 5:30, the temps were already in the 80's. The weather is supposed to break over the weekend. It's none to soon for me. I woke up this morning feeling a bit sick, so I put errands on hold until tomorrow. In this heat you have to do errands first thing in the morning before things get too steamy - so even though I'm feeling a bit better now it's way too hot to be outside. Even Gertie can't take it - she's peeing and pooping faster than she ever has! And don't take your animals out in the car in this heat - even if you have air conditioning - it's just too hot. This noon's news had several stories of people who took their dogs with them only to have them die in the car while they ran into a store "for just a minute." That's all it takes to have the inside of your car to become an oven. Even if you roll down the windows - the car is still too hot to leave your animals in it!

Was sad to hear that Farah Fawcet lost her battle with cancer. She was an icon of the 70's and for those of us who became teenagers during that time remember her well as one of Charlie's Angels.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


Today I was remembering the two weeks in January when I was snowed in with a foot of snow and lots of ice and thinking I wish I had a time machine. This morning at 6 when I got out of bed it was already 81 degrees. Heat warnings are out again. My poor air conditioner is running practically non-stop. I have the temperature set at 76 which is cool if your just sitting but if you stand up and move around drenches you in sweat in no time. I decided this evening that I wasn't going to cook and ordered a pizza from Pizza Hut. It's our only chain pizza place that actually delivers. If I had to go out to pick up a pizza I might as well have cooked! I ordered one with a stuffed crust - I'd never gotten one of them before. It makes the crust more edible but I don't think it was worth the price. What I usually do I put the crust in the fridge and next day open it up, spread butter and garlic, pop it in the microwave for a bit. You get garlic bread!

I'm going to go think about snow for awhile and hope it cools me off for a bit.....

Monday, June 22, 2009

Summer is here

And it is hot - again! Today the temps are back into the mid-90's with heat index temps hovering around 105. I had to run out to do a couple of errands this afternoon. Believe me when I say I didn't want to but I had to. Bills need to be paid and prescriptions needed to be picked up. I should have swung by the grocery store too but just those few errands sapped all the energy out of me. The streets here in Tidy Town are basically empty until the factories let out. As soon as the workers make it home all is quiet again. I know it's bad for local businesses but you just won't last long out there. The local tv stations interrupt programming all day long to remind you to stay out of the heat. Good advice.

Yesterday was Father's Day - hope everyone who is a dad had a good one. My dad doesn't need or wear ties so I sent him a basket of Selma's Cookies. They are mighty tasty and hopefully he will enjoy them.

I've been listening to a relaxation CD at night which has been really helpful. I'm usually asleep within 10 or 15 minutes of going to bed. That's a record for me! Now I need to find one for afternoon naps.......

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Another Hot Day

But not as hot as the last couple days. We finally had quite the thunderstorm overnight having a cooling effect. Today it only got into the low 90's - about 6 to 8 degrees cooler than the last couple of days, but still mighty hot!

I had to laugh yesterday - I've been off a day all week it seems. I thought thursday was friday and friday was saturday. I opened up my blog to see that I posted Friday Dog Blogging on thursday. Oh well. I took yesterday off instead.

In this heat you just do not feel like doing anything. Even though I have central air which makes it ok inside, the minute I take Gertie out the heat hits you like a brick wall, sapping all your energy. I think it's time to go get a nice piece of fruit, sit back, and relax a bit......

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Friday Dog Blogging

Originally uploaded by KenCalvino
I know she's thinking "Take the damn picture and let me get back to the air conditioning." She has found that sitting on the air conditioning vent in the entryway is most enjoyable. I looked all over for her earlier today and that's where I ended up finding her. The temps today topped out in the high 90's and a heat index will into the 100's. A lot of heat strokes according to the news. I went over to Walmart at 9 this morning and the temps were already in the 80's!

I bought a couple needed fruits and vegetables at Walmart today and was surprised when I got home that it was after 11. Guess I was having more fun shopping than I thought. Yeah, right. Some items are way on the far left, others to the far right. Forget one item and it's a long haul back and forth. I was sore from head to toe by the time I got home and something tells me tomorrow will be a tough day getting out of bed. Anyway, if it's this hot - and they say it will be this hot for the near future - who wants to get out of bed.

The lawn guy showed up this evening - brave soul. He didn't do any lawn all day he said because of the heat. Although it was no cooler when he got here. Oh well, the lawn looks good now and Gertie's happy to have a spot to go where grass doesn't hit her on the behind when she has to do her business.

I told mom that I nicknamed Gertie - calling her "Spats." She has the cutest little white streak across her paws. You can see it prominently on one of her back paws in this picture. It's not quite as pronounced on her front paws but there is a little touch of white on them. Gertie likes to lick at her paws and chews on them - I asked if she was trying to remove her spats.

Oh well, back to the air conditioning please.........

Wednesday, June 17, 2009


Take several days of rain and add 92 degrees of heat - steamy! It almost hurts to go outside. Even Gertie makes quick work of her necessary trips out to do her business and right back in she comes. She's afraid of the air conditioning grates but something tells me that as the summer drones on she'll get over that quick. I am mad at myself today because I forgot to take the trash out last night. I spent the day getting everything together and it totally slipped my mind until I heard the truck on a side street around 8 this morning. Since my trash is picked up in the middle of the night there is nothing I can do but wait until next week.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Finally! I'm able to get on the internet.....

It's been another bad day here at Frog Central weather wise. The thunderstorms started before sunrise. The farmers here are all grumbling because they've replanted their corn twice already and it looks like they'll end up having to replant again. We're getting too much water and it's turning the fields to marsh lands. I was able to get a grocery list going - yeah, I know, another one. It seems like you walk in the door with groceries and you think, I should have gotten this or that item. Fruits and vegetables don't last long. I've already gone through quite a bit of the stuff. I decided not to have a salad tonight - I gave poor Gertie the night off from listening to me rooty toot toot! LOL

I'm watching the show Life After People - it is a fascinating show. It's a combination of some fancy digital imaging work with real life places that have been abandoned.

I think I have to find another way to access the internet. The local cable company goes out every time it rains. Dial-up may be a better option at this point!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Thunder and Lightning

I can finally turn my computer on! The thunder and lightning seem to have abated for now. It's always a pain trying to watch television when the weather is bad - especially during tornado season. I watched my soap today and thankfully they left most interruption to commercials. I had to laugh though when they broke in with a weather emergency update and the weatherman wanted to give a warning to all those in the immediate path. He pulled out a wedge section and highlighted it so it would bring up the town in the path of the storm - there were none! The storm was over open ground - they returned to regular programming promptly. Other than that it's been pretty quiet here today. Gertie goes out - Gertie fight me to get dried off - Gertie want to play - Gertie wants to go back out. Get the picture.....

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Busy Day

I decided this morning that I'm sick of canned fruits and vegetables. It's summer and I want something fresh. Off to the grocery store and I filled my cart with lots of nice looking fruits and veggies. Of course the rest of the morning was spent washing and storing the items. Ah, but it was all worth it. I sat down to a nice nectarine with lunch, an afternoon orange, and then a nice big salad for dinner.

I probably should have spent the day dusting from the looks of the picture I took yesterday of Gertie watching television. It's nice not having to worry about Gertie when I go out. She just hangs out and waits for my return without tearing the place apart. Or peeing everywhere. I watched an episode of It's Me Or The Dog the other day and the owners were having a problem with a dog peeing everywhere while they were out - it even peed on their countertops - YUCK! That's where a cage comes in very handy. I quickly turned the channel because I didn't want Gertie getting any ideas......

I want to give a shout out to AB. She made it through the surgery but's having a hard time with the chemo. Keep you chin up - the treatments are almost over and we're all sending you good thoughts.

Here in Tidy Town we have lots (and I mean lots!) of parades. Today was another one - third in a month. This one was for POW/MIA soldiers. While parades for good causes are a good thing, I just think they're a bit overdone here. They end up being poorly attended.

I guess I have to go for now - I've got an over-tired puppy on my hands. It's easy to tell when she gets that way because she acts just like a little kid - running all over like a maniac and all out of sorts.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Friday Dog Blogging

Watching TV
Originally uploaded by KenCalvino
Gertie's had a pretty good day today - which is great after yesterday where everything that could go wrong, did. She was upset to her stomach all day - a lot of trips out but doing nothing. When someone came to the door trying to sell something, that's when she let loose. Thankfully, if it had to be inside, it was at least on the tiled kitchen floor, making it easy to clean up and disinfect. She was wore out after that and most of the afternoon just wanted to be held. Today she seems to be her old self but she's decided that she liked that whole being held thing, which is amazing because she's always been a bit offish. Wanting to play on her own terms.

Late last night the rain started in earnest. We had quite a downpour, bringing down a couple smaller limbs on the trees. In the midst of one of the hardest rains I've seen in a while, guess who wants to go out. Gertie was soaked through and through. She hates the towel, but it had to be done.She loves to play in the rain and it certainly gives her a nice bath!

We started working on shake this week and she's doing really good with it. That paw goes up in the air on command, but she's not entirely sure why you want to grap her paw and shake it. She mostly tolerable of the whole thing, especially if she's sitting in my lap at the moment. She's a bit more hesitant if she's on the floor and your leaning over her - Gertie really doesn't go for that at all.

Here she is fascinated by television. I have never seen a dog so engrossed in t.v. - all the time. She loves to stand in front of the television watching, as she is here, or even if she's in my lap - one eye is on the t..v. I think it's the movement - she also likes to sit in my lap here at the computer and she'll watch intently as long as things are changing on the screen. If I'm reading an article she's off to find something more exciting. By the way - she's watching Meerkat Manor and everythime the little meerkat's make their squeaking noise, she barks back at them. I think that's the last time we'll watch that show!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Thunder and Lightning

It was a late night last night. Around 11 the storm started and what light show it was! The lightning never stopped until about 3 a.m. It was like trying to sleep with the lights on - and the radio blaring so hard it was shaking the house. Gertie wanted to go out to see what was going on - it took several times of telling her no for her to finally settle down. Still, she had to bark when the thunder got too loud. We lost power for a bit in the night so this morning I ran around not knowing what time it was for a bit till all the clocks were reset. This morning was much cooler outside but more rainstorms are on the way and it hasn't taken long for the mugginess factor to kick in. Thank goodness for central air conditioning! It may not be green but it sure is comfortable.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Day Lilies

My day lilies started blossoming yesterday. About a dozen stalks of flowers spikes are up in the air so I should have flowers for quite some time. Last night I saw the first fire flies buzzing around and Gertie's reaction was much the same as what Shadow's was - let me catch one! Gertie raced all over the lawn chasing first one light then another. It reminded me of when I was a kid running around with a mason jar.

Last night I watched Life After People. It really is a good show and whoever does all the animation - fantastic. It would take a couple hundred years but the buffalo would make a thunderous comeback. It's amazing how quick buildings and such would disappear from the landscape.

I ordered an MP3 player today - my very first. I decided to go with a very basic $20 model to try one out. You would think that someone who was a music major would have the latest and greatest of audio equipment - nope. I plug my cd's into the computer to listen to them. I do the same with DVD's. I'm not the most tech savy person. So this little player will be an opportunity for me to see just how easy (or difficult) they are to use.

Monday, June 08, 2009

Pop Tarts

I was shopping last week and there on the end of one of the aisles was a display of Pop Tarts. I haven't had one of them in a long time and they were on sale so I thought I'd pick up a box of the frosted brown sugar variety when my eye happened upon a flavor called strawberry milkshake. Then I saw chocolate banana split! I had to try these new varieties and could hardly wait until I got home. When I was in the checkout line the checker asked me if I wanted the candy bar I bought at the register or should she bag it. I told her to bag it that the only reason I bought it was that I had a coupon to get it free (but I wanted to add leave out the Pop Tarts!). And of course they were in the first bag I unpacked and so they sat there on the counter taunting me while I put the rest of the groceries away. Finally the moment arrived and I decided to try one of the chocolate banana split Pop Tarts first. OMG! I never tasted anything so horrible in my life. The filling is some mushy cream that oozes all over. I don't know how they got the flavor name because it didn't taste like any banana split I ever ate - chocolate or otherwise! I'm afraid I had the same result with the strawberry milkshake. Thankfully they were only a buck a box on sale because the remainder landed in the trash - pronto! As mom would say - no wonder they were on sale. So true.

Other things - we're under thunderstorm and tornado warnings today. It's already raining this morning and it's supposed to continue for the rest of the week. Errands for this morning are postponed - hopefully things will calm down a bit this afternoon so I can sneak out to do at least the basic things that have to get done. Gertie and I began working on "shake" this morning. She does well with sit and stay - and I don't want her to get bored. She did one "shake" this morning completely by accident but she loved the praise she got so hopefully in a couple days it will be for real. It's been different training Gertie because her trigger isn't treats. She could care less about them - she much prefers the praise or one of her toys. We're working on it and learning from each other along the way.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Documentary Weekend

I've been watching documentaries this weekend. Last night I watched one called "Home." It was a photographers look at the planet (sorry, I forgot the photographer's name). The first half was all on climate change and the problems it's causing. The second half was a look at all that's been going on to mitigate those problems. A really great documentary. Tonight I've been watching one on dogs and their intelligence. A lot of it I'd already heard or known. The one thing that was interesting was that in Russia they took wild foxes and bred them to make them friendlier and easier to handle. It did not take too many generations for them to become domesticated. What was amazing is that their bodies and appearance changed dramatically - they began to look like dogs!

I talked with AB today - she's doing pretty good after her surgery and seems to be making a quick recovery. Other loose ends - the pizza wasn't bad - a bag of sauerkraut was leaking causing the smell. Everything is cleaned up, but you can still smell it some - hopefully the Arm and Hammer will do the trick. Walmart wouldn't do anything about the $3.50 coupon - I figured that but thought I'd still ask.

Guess it's off for a quick bite. I made some honey mustard chicken. Delicious! And I bought some potato salad - a nice summer meal.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Friday Dog Blogging

Sleepy Gertie
Originally uploaded by KenCalvino
Gertie has had a pretty good week. Yesterday her yard was mowed and that made her extremely happy. She's had to spend a lot of time outside romping around. It's been quite cool here at Frog Central so I've had the windows open. Gertie has about run herself ragged going from window to window to keep an eye on everything and everyone passing by. She was taking a nap and I went to get the camera which peaked her interest. She could barely keep her eyes open - and as you can see, she really couldn't. It's definitely past her nap time!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Feeling a bit better today

I thought I was going to die yesterday. I was sore from head to toe. This morning my left leg is still giving me problems but otherwise I'm feeling pretty good. I guess when I go to the grocery store I'm going to have to break down and use one of those motorized scooters. I really miss grocery delivery service!

This morning's bird on the railing was a cardinal - a male cardinal. He tilted his head from side to side looking at me before flying up to the roof. I had to laugh because if he thought he was hiding from me he wasn't doing a good job - his tail swished back and forth below the roof line and in plain view.

I bought a pizza from Walmart but I think it may be bad. I have to really check it and maybe run it back over. When I opened the refrigerator this morning it smelled! It about knocked me over. I've never had one smell like that before. I have a couple of other problems with my last Walmart shopping trip so maybe it would be good to go over. They didn't ring up one of my coupons - a $3.50 cent coupon. That's significant. I guess I'm going to have to start handing them over one at a time and make sure they ring them through.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Too Tired Today

It's another rainy day here at Frog Central. It seems days like this you just want to laze around the house doing nothing. Add to that my legs are as sore as can be from grocery shopping yesterday. I went up and down each and every aisle and had a cart full heading to the register. I did pretty good with coupons - saving almost $20 off my bill. I had 5 of my cloth bags full. So today I'm limping pretty good on my left leg.

I want to give a shout out to AB. She's headed to surgery tomorrow morning. Good luck!

Monday, June 01, 2009

Monday, Monday

There are a lot of songs about Mondays and none of them good. After a really nice weekend here at Frog Central the temps are supposed to soar to 90 degrees. That's a bit too warm for me so I've closed up the windows and turned on the air conditioner. It'll be a good day to get some things done inside. Or at least think about getting something done....

Saturday afternoon another baby bird found its way to the railing right outside my door. The little downy feathers they're born with were sticking out around the more mature brown feathers. It stayed there while Gertie went out and did her business and came back in. I talked to it and it chirped right back. You could hear the frantic parents in the nest calling it back and finally it took off, heeding its parents and headed home. There have been a lot of baby birds this year and it has been fun seeing all of them. The hibiscus hedge really provides a lot of food and cover the birds and they love it.

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