A long overdue update

Next year in Jerusalem…

Sorry for the long blog silence. Since arriving in Texas (aka Ebola Central — 2nd Ebola case in Dallas now) I’ve been going like the enegizer bunny trying to get things organized for my Ema, amid caring for 3 very sick little cats with respiratory infections that so far have not been diagnosed and are not responding to any of the treatments the vets (multiple) have tried, and grading.

We’ve got the kitchen re-organized, everything out of the garage and sorted, then re-organized and put back into
some new tool cabinets we needed to buy. I’m slowly getting my grandfather’s tools in shape and put away. My brother inherited a ton of tools of all sorts from my grandparents — they’d gotten into bad shape after my grandfather’s death and, since my brother’s house was under construction when they were brought back, they simply got stored in that bad shape and so, of course, got in worse shape. So I’ve been spending about an hour an evening armed with DW-40 and copious steel wool pads and painstakingly removing years of rust off them and organizing them so that they can actually be used.

We’ve gotten my mother’s office room mostly organized (still more work to do there) and the only closet in the house organized.

Taking care of all the cats takes about 3 hours a day just in terms of feeding and cleaning the litterboxes and that doesn’t count medicating, cleaning the (various) enclosure kitties’ habitats and our habitat with all the inside kitties — five are in the room I’m sleeping in (Mischa, Batya, Nesicha –in her tiny cage– Tinoket, and Smokey One Eye) — Fluffy, Leeza, Tzeekada, Tzofia, Missy, Yafah, Muffin, Smokey, Nipper, Shyla, and Mia have the run of the main part of the house, and Minette has the office as her habitat. Shyla, Smokey and Nipper all have this horrible respiratory virus and so are getting medicines, special food, and needing to be nebulized (you put them into a cat carrier, cover it securely, and use a machine to pump oxygen with a medication that turns into a vapour into it to help clear their lungs) multiple times a day. So far, we are not seeing any improvements and if Nipper, who is in the worst shape from it, is not markedly improved by Tuesday, we are going to need to take him to a respiratory specialist because the vets are pretty much at a loss. Shyla has had it as an underlying condition for two years now with periods of appearing in relatively good health and then having relapses. Nipper is just dog sick with it currently.

Last night we had the first meal from the garden — well, part of the meal — with the micro-greens I planted making the first garden salad. I’ve got bok choy growing in a container, two grocery-store lettuces doing the re-grow thing in containers along with some celery and green onions, and a ton of lettuce, arugula, kale, and mustard green seedlings nearly ready for transplant into the square foot garden — as soon as I get time and cooperative weather to double-dig the base soil and mix up the soil to put in as the main growing environment.

We had a hell of a storm a few weeks ago and a huge limb off the pecan tree snapped halfway off and thudded onto the roof. We needed to get the tree people out to cut it and a lot of other limbs that needed to come off of it and the other trees over-hanging the house. They did a crappy job and so I scarified my Ema by climbing up on a ladder armed with a saw and removing a bunch more.

The diet is so not working. I can’t understand how eating under 1200 calories a day and almost no carbs in the mix has resulted in losing only 3 pounds in five weeks.

Other things I’m doing right now: I’ve signed up for a bunch of online web design and computer programming and database courses, working on getting non-profit status for the sanctuary (miles of paperwork), grading seminar papers, and knitting a sweater for my niece. I got the laptop computer finally freed from the trojan but the 6 month old tablet still has no sound because it still will not recognize the sound driver and I’m at my wits’ end with it.


7 responses to “A long overdue update”

  1. WipeOutHamasOnceAndForAll says :

    You say:
    “Taking care of all the cats takes about 3 hours a day just in terms of feeding and cleaning the litterboxes and that doesnโ€™t count medicating, cleaning the (various) enclosure kittiesโ€™ habitats…”
    You would enjoy your life so much more if you simply had no cats at all at home, or at least maximum one or two, not more!!

    All the best to you and your mother.

  2. tddpirate says :

    How about suggesting to Yael that the cats be trained to identify and kill Hamas terrorists?
    This would kill two birds with one stone for you – the Hamas would be wiped out and the cats will be busy in Gaza Strip rather than in Yael’s mother’s house.

  3. erin says :

    So good to hear from you!! Hope the 3 meowsers feel better soon. I know that can’t be fun. Have they checked for feline asthma? It took several vets to believe me that Vlad wasn’t just having super bad hairball issues. His current vet (the best vet in the world besides Ronen, it sounds like) has him on a long acting injectable steroids and he goes a few months between needing shots. It does have the risk of affecting his liver in the long run, but I refuse to let him slowly suffocate to death and there is no way he will EVER let me use an asthma mask on him. We just monitor him closely and so far, so good.

    As for the diet business…that doesn’t sound healthy at all. I am on a low carb diet from a dietician, but I have been ordered to make up for the carbs by eating 25-30 grams of protein 3-4 times a day and not to worry about counting the carbs in healthy veggies. (ie starchy veggies like corn and potatoes should be counted as carbs). I was told do not worry about calories for the time being, mainly because if you eat that much protein and veggies, you will be fuller than you think.

    I am very impressed with your handiness. Careful with all that lumberjacking ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Did you make a sukkah?

  4. israeliminx says :

    Wipe — well with 32 cats, I think creating a sanctuary to care for them is the better (and only!) option ๐Ÿ™‚

    Pirate– LOL, I love the idea.

    Erin — good to hear from you too! Yes, they’ve checked for asthma and it seems to be viral ๐Ÿ˜ฆ Good to hear that little Vlad is able to have his asthma kept in check minus an asthma mask. It would be a rare cat that would let an owner attach a mask.

    We didn’t make a sukkah this year because the mosquitoes and fire ants are so bad this year. You literally can’t walk down the driveway (made with paving stones) to the trash can without getting a dozen ant bites and the yard is worse! How is your holiday going? Did you make a sukkah?

    • Erin says :

      Ugh. Viral infections suck. I hope the vets can figure out a plan. Seeing them cough and hack is so sad. Especially when there is no clear cut solution.

      This is what I will have to use if the injections start screwing with his organ function….


      I TOTALLY hear you on the mosquito business. They are horrible and I get bit every time i step out the door. I have never built a sukkah. I want to. Badly. I just have zero idea what i am doing. I had a great Rosh Hashanah, went with a group friends to dinner. Dalia, the host, is from Israel and I very very sweet. I need to visit her more often because this learning Hebrew business is not as easy as i though. Anyways, on of her guests (also israel) commented that Israel is a very closed community and that it would be difficult for me to make aliyah by myself with no family connections and not feel separate from everyone else. Do you feel like that? She said most non israelis end up making friends with other nonisraelis. Was that how it was for you?

    • Tony says :

      Being from the UK, I’d never heard of fire ants, so I looked them up. Now I wish I hadn’t! ๐Ÿ™‚ (for thos who are interested… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3vVUh-194vU )

    • WipeOutHamasOnceAndForAll says :

      Well, 32 cats, that is beyond imaginable to me!!! The time and cost spent to deal with such an astronomical number of cats certainly destroy completely your life! You owe it to yourself to take action ASAP and this sanctuary idea is really a great idea with only one very important caveat.

      Yes, you are right, a sanctuary ASAP but only if it means that it frees your life 100%, totally, for good from caring for cats. I love cats and dogs but I do love life many times more than animals and that is one of many reasons why I do not have cats nor dogs.
      Therefore, you owe it to yourself to prioritize your life over the lives of your cats and that is an understatement in your case. And now that you are with your mother, you owe it not only to yourself but to your mother too.

      So, again, and it is worth repeating several times, yes for a sanctuary as long as, only if it frees you 100%, totally from having to deal with cats anymore.
      You surely have enough on your plate, to say the least. Your mother and yourself too would benefit so much more if you implement this sanctuary as soon as possible and free yourself 100% from dealing with cats. You will then discover a new taste for life outside of the lives of your cats.

      My sincere best wishes to both of you and your mother. Take care of both of you.

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