Sad news

I let Sprite go this morning.

Before Steve died, he noticed that she had a lump on her back, right next to her spine. The vet excised it, and it came out clean as a discrete lump.  Lab tests were inconclusive.

Shortly after Steve died, Sprite was sitting on my lap, and I noticed that the lump  was back, only larger.  In the three days it took me to get her to the vet it had grown appreciably.  It was so close to the spine that more surgery was not an option, so we opted to keep her comfortable.  Yesterday, she let me know that it was time.

She was such a good cat — she took care of all of us; was Steve’s copilot, and mine, and she leaves a very large hole in this household which is already in tatters.

Sprite was attended by her vet and tech of many years, who eased her way with care and grace.

Princess Jasmine Sprite of Kelimcoons, July 6, 2012-July 17, 2024

Books read in 2024

35  Timber Wolf, Murphy Lawless/Zoe Chant (Virtue Shifters) (e)
34  Lessons in Chemistry, Bonnie Garmus (book club)
33  Whammo Ranch, Jerry Boyd (Bob and Nikki Book 2)(e)
32  Bob’s Saucer Repair, Jerry Boyd (Bob and Nikki Book 1) (e)
31  Finders, Melissa Scott (Firstborn, Last born Book 1), (e)
30  When the Dandelions Sing: A Novel, James J. Hill III (book club)
29  Winter Lost, Patricia Briggs, (Mercy Thompson #14) (e)
28  Koalafied for Love, Murphy Lawless (Virtue Shifters) (e)
27  The Time Traders, Andre Norton (re-read) (e)
26  War for the Oaks, Emma Bull (re-re-&c-read) (book club)
25  Earthly Delights, Kerry Greenwood (Corinda Chapman #1) (re-read) (e)
24  Wednesday’s Child, Rhea Côté Robbins
23  Hate Mail, Donna Marchetti (e)
22  Comfort is an Old Barn, Amy Calder  (book club)
21  Arabella, Georgette Heyer (e) (re-read)
20  The Foundling, Georgette Heyer (e) (possibly I read this once before)
19  Death in the Spires, KJ Charles (e)
18  What Cannot be Said, C.S. Harris (Sebastian St. Cyr #19) (e)
17  The Grief of Stones, Katherine Addison (e) (re-read)
16  Witness for the Dead, Katherine Addison  (e) (re-read)
15  The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison (e) (re-re-re-read)*
14  Hen Fever, Olivia Waite (e)
13  Unmasked by the Marquis, Cat Sebastian (e) ( re-read)
12  A Duke in Disguise, Cat Sebastian (e) (reread)
11  Heart of Stone, Johannes T. Evans (e)
10  West with the Night, Beryl Markham (e)
9   A Song to Drown Rivers, Ann Liang (e) (netgalley)
8   Bookstores and Bonedust, Travis Baldree (prequel) (e) (library)
7   We Could Be So Good, Cat Sebastian (e) (library)
6   Thorn Hedge, T. Kingfisher (e) (library)
5   Wild Seed, Octavia M. Butler (e) (library)
4   In Our Stars, Jack Campbell (Doomed Earth #1) (pre-pub) (e)
3   Legends and Lattes, Travis Baldree (e) (library)
2   Heart of the Sun Warrior, Sue Lynn Tan, (Celestial Kingdom #2) (e) (library)
1   This is How You Lose the Time War, Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone (e) (library)

_____
*… I think I may have lost track.  I do know I started several books, and put them aside, because I Just Couldn’t. I stress that it wasn’t Them, it was Me.  I don’t think I actually finished anything before I finally did manage to settle into a re-re-re-&C-read of The Goblin Emperor, so that’s where we’ll pick up the tally.

Books read in 2024

33  Whammo Ranch, Jerry Boyd (Bob and Nikki Book 2)(e)
32  Bob’s Saucer Repair, Jerry Boyd (Bob and Nikki Book 1) (e)
31  Finders, Melissa Scott (Firstborn, Last born Book 1), (e)
30  When the Dandelions Sing: A Novel, James J. Hill III (book club)
29  Winter Lost, Patricia Briggs, (Mercy Thompson #14) (e)
28  Koalafied for Love, Murphy Lawless (Virtue Shifters) (e)
27  The Time Traders, Andre Norton (re-read) (e)
26  War for the Oaks, Emma Bull (re-re-&c-read) (book club)
25  Earthly Delights, Kerry Greenwood (Corinda Chapman #1) (re-read) (e)
24  Wednesday’s Child, Rhea Côté Robbins
23  Hate Mail, Donna Marchetti (e)
22  Comfort is an Old Barn, Amy Calder  (book club)
21  Arabella, Georgette Heyer (e) (re-read)
20  The Foundling, Georgette Heyer (e) (possibly I read this once before)
19  Death in the Spires, KJ Charles (e)
18  What Cannot be Said, C.S. Harris (Sebastian St. Cyr #19) (e)
17  The Grief of Stones, Katherine Addison (e) (re-read)
16  Witness for the Dead, Katherine Addison  (e) (re-read)
15  The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison (e) (re-re-re-read)*
14  Hen Fever, Olivia Waite (e)
13  Unmasked by the Marquis, Cat Sebastian (e) ( re-read)
12  A Duke in Disguise, Cat Sebastian (e) (reread)
11  Heart of Stone, Johannes T. Evans (e)
10  West with the Night, Beryl Markham (e)
9   A Song to Drown Rivers, Ann Liang (e) (netgalley)
8   Bookstores and Bonedust, Travis Baldree (prequel) (e) (library)
7   We Could Be So Good, Cat Sebastian (e) (library)
6   Thorn Hedge, T. Kingfisher (e) (library)
5   Wild Seed, Octavia M. Butler (e) (library)
4   In Our Stars, Jack Campbell (Doomed Earth #1) (pre-pub) (e)
3   Legends and Lattes, Travis Baldree (e) (library)
2   Heart of the Sun Warrior, Sue Lynn Tan, (Celestial Kingdom #2) (e) (library)
1   This is How You Lose the Time War, Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone (e) (library)

_____
*… I think I may have lost track.  I do know I started several books, and put them aside, because I Just Couldn’t. I stress that it wasn’t Them, it was Me.  I don’t think I actually finished anything before I finally did manage to settle into a re-re-re-&C-read of The Goblin Emperor, so that’s where we’ll pick up the tally.

Books read in 2024

32  Bob’s Saucer Repair, Jerry Boyd (Bob and Nikki Book 1) (e)
31  Finders, Melissa Scott (Firstborn, Last born Book 1), (e)
30  When the Dandelions Sing: A Novel, James J. Hill III (book club)
29  Winter Lost, Patricia Briggs, (Mercy Thompson #14) (e)
28  Koalafied for Love, Murphy Lawless (Virtue Shifters) (e)
27  The Time Traders, Andre Norton (re-read) (e)
26  War for the Oaks, Emma Bull (re-re-&c-read) (book club)
25  Earthly Delights, Kerry Greenwood (Corinda Chapman #1) (re-read) (e)
24  Wednesday’s Child, Rhea Côté Robbins
23  Hate Mail, Donna Marchetti (e)
22  Comfort is an Old Barn, Amy Calder  (book club)
21  Arabella, Georgette Heyer (e) (re-read)
20  The Foundling, Georgette Heyer (e) (possibly I read this once before)
19  Death in the Spires, KJ Charles (e)
18  What Cannot be Said, C.S. Harris (Sebastian St. Cyr #19) (e)
17  The Grief of Stones, Katherine Addison (e) (re-read)
16  Witness for the Dead, Katherine Addison  (e) (re-read)
15  The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison (e) (re-re-re-read)*
14  Hen Fever, Olivia Waite (e)
13  Unmasked by the Marquis, Cat Sebastian (e) ( re-read)
12  A Duke in Disguise, Cat Sebastian (e) (reread)
11  Heart of Stone, Johannes T. Evans (e)
10  West with the Night, Beryl Markham (e)
9   A Song to Drown Rivers, Ann Liang (e) (netgalley)
8   Bookstores and Bonedust, Travis Baldree (prequel) (e) (library)
7   We Could Be So Good, Cat Sebastian (e) (library)
6   Thorn Hedge, T. Kingfisher (e) (library)
5   Wild Seed, Octavia M. Butler (e) (library)
4   In Our Stars, Jack Campbell (Doomed Earth #1) (pre-pub) (e)
3   Legends and Lattes, Travis Baldree (e) (library)
2   Heart of the Sun Warrior, Sue Lynn Tan, (Celestial Kingdom #2) (e) (library)
1   This is How You Lose the Time War, Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone (e) (library)

_____
*… I think I may have lost track.  I do know I started several books, and put them aside, because I Just Couldn’t. I stress that it wasn’t Them, it was Me.  I don’t think I actually finished anything before I finally did manage to settle into a re-re-re-&C-read of The Goblin Emperor, so that’s where we’ll pick up the tally.

The day of good surprises

So, I saw my PCP this morning.  I have been cleared to drive locally until I see a vascular specialist about a blockage.  This means that I could — and did! — go to the grocery store this afternoon, and will be able to take Rook to his meet ‘n greet with his vet tomorrow afternoon.

That was pleasant surprise Number One.

Pleasant surprise Number Two was the arrival in the mail of the original cover art for Liaden Universe® novel number 27, Diviner’s Bow, to be published in April 2025.  David Mattingly did his usual marvelous work. I really appreciate the care he took with the characters — that’s Counsel to Chaos Blays essWorthi on the left and the Deaf Counselor, Majel ziaGorn, on the right.

The Cat Farm and Confusion Factory Welcomes Rook Thunderpaws

Rook has arrived at the Cat Farm and Confusion Factory and is for the moment cozily ensconced in Club Rook, aka the second bathroom.

He’s very affectionate, absolutely fearless, and has a very large purr for such a small creature.  Understanding that I’m accustomed to full-grown Maine coon Cats.  Rook looks very small to me.  He’s four months old.

He met Trooper, very briefly, because I hadn’t pushed the door all the way to behind me.  Trooper said something to him, in that deep voice of his, and Rook scrunched against the floor, but he gave no ground, which seems to me to be proper respect to an elder.

Some time later, Firefly demanded to know what was behind the closed door, so I let her in.  That meeting went very well.  Sprite has not yet met the kitten, because Sprite is sleeping in a sun puddle.

The plan is to keep the kitten in Club Rook until I come back from my doctor’s appointment tomorrow morning.  We’ll consult then, and see if he thinks he might like to come into my office, take up occupancy of The Rookery, and start learning the business of the house.

I did mention to him that he will be having to manage an online fandom.  He didn’t seem to think that would be any problem.

Pictures below:

Weekend catch up

We here at the Cat Farm and Confusion Factory have been keeping our heads down and trying to get Useful Things Done. The jury’s still out on the question of whether we’ve succeeded, but one does what one can.

A kind friend gave me a lift to the hair salon on Monday, and was able to extend the trip to include the post office and the grocery.

I finished a read-through of the first half of Diviner’s Bow, and am now in the process of figuring out the second half.  Around that, I invoked Google Takeout on behalf of Steve’s accounts and transferred them to that portable hard drive I was never going to use.  Every time I think I’m going to cancel Steve’s phone, the two-step verification system produces another reason why I should wait a little longer.

Yesterday, we (quietly) celebrated Princess Jasmine Sprite’s 12th birthday.  There was napping in the sun, napping under tables, and napping on the couch, and a pouch of Delectables Bisque for happy hour, after which we all gathered into the living room to view the first episode of Renegade Nell.

Today, I have some chores to finish up.  This afternoon, a friend will be coming by to help me put together and position the puppy crate our neighbor donated to the Kitten Project, and I’ll be converting the second bathroom to Club Rook.

Tomorrow, another kind friend will be taking me to Book Club, then to pick up Rook — and I figure that’s all I’ll be accomplishing tomorrow.

Tuesday, I (finally) get to see my PCP — a kind friend is giving me a ride — and hopefully I’ll be given permission to drive myself to, oh, Rook’s meet ‘n greet with his vet on Wednesday.  That would be nice.

Otherwise, I’m looking at the list of home upkeep things that need to be done and trying to strategize.  I thought I’d been cleaning the rain gutters, but yanno?  Maybe not.  And I really need help with the front garden and the backyard, which I feel is probably too little for a full-blown landscaping enterprise, but too much for a woman with a hoe.

And, that, I think, catches us up.

I hope to update with Rook photos tomorrow, depending on how he feels about having his picture taken.

 

Books read in 2024

31  Finders, Melissa Scott (Firstborn, Last born Book 1), (e)
30  When the Dandelions Sing: A Novel, James J. Hill III (book club)
29  Winter Lost, Patricia Briggs, (Mercy Thompson #14) (e)
28  Koalafied for Love, Murphy Lawless (Virtue Shifters) (e)
27  The Time Traders, Andre Norton (re-read) (e)
26  War for the Oaks, Emma Bull (re-re-&c-read) (book club)
25  Earthly Delights, Kerry Greenwood (Corinda Chapman #1) (re-read) (e)
24  Wednesday’s Child, Rhea Côté Robbins
23  Hate Mail, Donna Marchetti (e)
22  Comfort is an Old Barn, Amy Calder  (book club)
21  Arabella, Georgette Heyer (e) (re-read)
20  The Foundling, Georgette Heyer (e) (possibly I read this once before)
19  Death in the Spires, KJ Charles (e)
18  What Cannot be Said, C.S. Harris (Sebastian St. Cyr #19) (e)
17  The Grief of Stones, Katherine Addison (e) (re-read)
16  Witness for the Dead, Katherine Addison  (e) (re-read)
15  The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison (e) (re-re-re-read)*
14  Hen Fever, Olivia Waite (e)
13  Unmasked by the Marquis, Cat Sebastian (e) ( re-read)
12  A Duke in Disguise, Cat Sebastian (e) (reread)
11  Heart of Stone, Johannes T. Evans (e)
10  West with the Night, Beryl Markham (e)
9   A Song to Drown Rivers, Ann Liang (e) (netgalley)
8   Bookstores and Bonedust, Travis Baldree (prequel) (e) (library)
7   We Could Be So Good, Cat Sebastian (e) (library)
6   Thorn Hedge, T. Kingfisher (e) (library)
5   Wild Seed, Octavia M. Butler (e) (library)
4   In Our Stars, Jack Campbell (Doomed Earth #1) (pre-pub) (e)
3   Legends and Lattes, Travis Baldree (e) (library)
2   Heart of the Sun Warrior, Sue Lynn Tan, (Celestial Kingdom #2) (e) (library)
1   This is How You Lose the Time War, Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone (e) (library)

_____
*… I think I may have lost track.  I do know I started several books, and put them aside, because I Just Couldn’t. I stress that it wasn’t Them, it was Me.  I don’t think I actually finished anything before I finally did manage to settle into a re-re-re-&C-read of The Goblin Emperor, so that’s where we’ll pick up the tally.

Books read in 2024

30  When the Dandelions Sing: A Novel, James J. Hill III (book club)
29  Winter Lost, Patricia Briggs, (Mercy Thompson #14) (e)
28  Koalafied for Love, Murphy Lawless (Virtue Shifters) (e)
27  The Time Traders, Andre Norton (re-read) (e)
26  War for the Oaks, Emma Bull (re-re-&c-read) (book club)
25  Earthly Delights, Kerry Greenwood (Corinda Chapman #1) (re-read) (e)
24  Wednesday’s Child, Rhea Côté Robbins
23  Hate Mail, Donna Marchetti (e)
22  Comfort is an Old Barn, Amy Calder  (book club)
21  Arabella, Georgette Heyer (e) (re-read)
20  The Foundling, Georgette Heyer (e) (possibly I read this once before)
19  Death in the Spires, KJ Charles (e)
18  What Cannot be Said, C.S. Harris (Sebastian St. Cyr #19) (e)
17  The Grief of Stones, Katherine Addison (e) (re-read)
16  Witness for the Dead, Katherine Addison  (e) (re-read)
15  The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison (e) (re-re-re-read)*
14  Hen Fever, Olivia Waite (e)
13  Unmasked by the Marquis, Cat Sebastian (e) ( re-read)
12  A Duke in Disguise, Cat Sebastian (e) (reread)
11  Heart of Stone, Johannes T. Evans (e)
10  West with the Night, Beryl Markham (e)
9   A Song to Drown Rivers, Ann Liang (e) (netgalley)
8   Bookstores and Bonedust, Travis Baldree (prequel) (e) (library)
7   We Could Be So Good, Cat Sebastian (e) (library)
6   Thorn Hedge, T. Kingfisher (e) (library)
5   Wild Seed, Octavia M. Butler (e) (library)
4   In Our Stars, Jack Campbell (Doomed Earth #1) (pre-pub) (e)
3   Legends and Lattes, Travis Baldree (e) (library)
2   Heart of the Sun Warrior, Sue Lynn Tan, (Celestial Kingdom #2) (e) (library)
1   This is How You Lose the Time War, Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone (e) (library)

_____
*… I think I may have lost track.  I do know I started several books, and put them aside, because I Just Couldn’t. I stress that it wasn’t Them, it was Me.  I don’t think I actually finished anything before I finally did manage to settle into a re-re-re-&C-read of The Goblin Emperor, so that’s where we’ll pick up the tally.

Life going on

Warning:  the following may be upsetting to some folks.  It’s always a judgement call, what to tell people, and when.  Steve and I have always been as open as possible with our readers, which means that you get the good, the bad, and the sad.

That said . . .

I was scheduled to spend some time with family this week — and in fact did spend some time with family this week, just not as much and not in the way we all would have preferred to see the thing done.

It started out pretty well on Monday.  The bunch of us met up at a glass studio in Belfast, spent a couple hours doing glass art, grabbed lunch at the Nautilus, and headed out to Bar Harbor, where family was staying.  I followed them in my car.  The plan was that I would stay until Friday, and they would stay until the Friday after that.

Once we made base, vacation things — TV, games, talk — commenced.  It was while we were all standing around the kitchen, shooting bulls, as one does, when, in the middle of Making a Point, I — folded up.  The next few minutes were exciting for everybody but me. From my perspective, one second I was talking, the next, I was looking at the floor tiles and asking, “What happened?”

That was when things got exciting for me.  My prize for beeping out in the middle of a sentence was a ride in the ambulance to the island hospital, an overnight in ER, many tests, including CAT scan, MRI, blood tests, cognitive and physical/balance tests.  When I was admitted to ER, the Operating Theory was that I had suffered a posterior stroke.  By the time I was returned to the wild, on Tuesday afternoon, the thinking was divided between soft “stroke” and hard “stress.”

I also won both the coveted “no driving” and “no alcohol” awards which are mine at least until I can see my regular doctor, on July 9.

Local friends have stepped up to offer rides to my various appointments, including the Great Rook Recovery Run, and the appointment with the PCP.

So, that happened, and things — THINGS — are more or less in-hand.  I have been motivated to update my power of attorney and my will, both of which still listed Steve as the Instrument of my Intent, should I be unable to accomplish my Fell Purposes personally.

Now we come to the sad part of this narrative.  Fans of Princess Jasmine Sprite, Mousebane, Overseer of the Daffodils, will wish to know that . . . Sprite has cancer.  It’s been very aggressive, and she has just started to take pain medication, which is sorta the beginning of the end.  For the moment, she still seeks out open windows, sunspots, and laps; is generous in sharing purrs and naps, and is Doing the Rounds.  When she lets me know it’s time, I’ll be with her.

. . . and I think that’s probably enough news for one post.

Here’s a picture of Sprite.