Friday, October 22, 2010

Mail Call!

This was waiting for me at my local post office the other day.

A hand stitched and sealing waxed sealed package! I had never gotten anything like this in the mail before.

Imagine using fabric and your hand sewing skills the next time you want to mail a package.

The package was from Mumbai.
You know where Mumbai is don't you?
(It is the largest city in India. You should know that. I confess, I didn't until just recently.)

The full address includes the words "Behind Basant Cinema.
Imagine having to clarify your return address by mention another significant address!
Inside the goods were carefully wrapped in plastic then in Hindi scripted newspaper.
I wondered what the headlines said.

What had I received?
Three kurti from Uma.
She is the person I communicate with online via ebay to order kurti that catch my eye. We have a friendly relationship, which blossomed after she asked if it was OK to address me as "Jill".
I wrote back that I was so happy with the kurti that I had received, that Uma could call me "Happy Jill".
And so that is how I am now addressed. These two kurti were selected by Uma with me in mind; I had ordered one kurti and Uma suggested that I consider these two as well.
I glad Uma did make the suggestion, quite respectfully and with the request that I forgive if Uma was being too forward.
The cotton fabric is hand printed and the beadwork on the sleeves, hem and collar are all hand done.
The cost of this kurti: $14 USD.

This kurti: Same cost.

Check out all the hand bead work, cuff stitching and fabric piecing.
I wore the kurti to work on Wednesday; it was more comfortable than wearing a tee shirt!

People were stopping me to comment on how gorgeous the top was, and where did I get it.

I told them:

I got it from a little shop behind the Basant cinema in Mumbai.

For $14.

(In the same package was my original order: a georgette kurti with full sequin work on yoke. It was a tad more expensive:

How could I resist?
I couldn't...which is why I have this style kurti in two colors now! Black slacks/skirt and a flesh colored camisole and it works for an extremely comfortable and eye catching date night outfit. I just rinse it in cold water and hang it to dry. Easy upkeep, but I could dry clean it if I wanted to.

(Feel free to shop at Stylish Kurtis. Just remember the bust/bra measurement is NOT your Kurti measurement. Add at least 4 inches to your measurement or better yet, measure the across the flat garment bustline of your most comfortable top, then double that number. I have a 40 inch bust due to a broad back, but wear a 48 in Kurtis.

Stylish Kurtis does take pay pal, just email Uma, say hi from me and ask to be billed via paypal. I've ordered from the shop several times and have an excellent experience dealings with them.)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Fleeting Beauty and Many Loves

Around where I live, all you have to do is look and you will see beauty.
This cloud just settled like a fur collar around the neck of Mt. Olympus.
While the hillside across the way donned an apricot down tam to compliment the seasonal colors further down.
Silent beauty...I stop and reach for my camera...have to share; have to share...
Do I miss the ocean waves of home?
Sometimes memories of frothy surf racing toward the shore are stirred when I look overhead.
I suppose I am a bigamist: I love the ocean shores, mountain splendors, moss draped swamps and sandy desert visas equally.
Don't judge my divided heart.
I've seen your pictures that document your many loves.
Don't try to say that you are not the same as me.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Oh so many kitties needing homes.

So this was Bitsy Blue Eyes while she was in a kennel for a whole week at Petsmart. She was still purring and reaching out for love each time we visited her there while we made up our minds about which cats to adopt.

Frenchie purred and offered to touch noses with us. (I love how her coral colored nose is outlined in black.)

We looked hard and long before we made our choices. It really was fun, interesting, and sad at the same time.

We dropped by the Utah Adoption Center, where cats are never euthanized. We had no idea when we came to look that there was a whole room of cats wanting to see us!

There were well over fifty cats in that room. The cats that are unable to socialize well with other cats are in cages.

The cats on the floor were all about being LOVED. Here nine cats woo Bernie. Notice the orange guy with his paw on Bernie's shoe. And check out how deep orange that middle cat on the ground is.

Oh it was kitty love everywhere!

They even had two Maine coon cats and a cat with a tail that would corkscrew uptight to his body until he was petted, then his tail would unfurl like a banner.

There was a lot of cat hair on every horizontal surface.
I should have known better than to sit down there wearing black pants!

Then there was this big guy named Chester. He is still at the Utah Humane Society.
He does have a wonderful foster family for now; his foster mom was my kind of lady.

He was a really big Flame point Siamese. Check out the size of his paws!
What a face. I was really tempted to adopt him. Those big blue eyes and big mitts...but introducing another adult male to Hart was an iffy proposition.
There were lots of sleeping kittens, and playing kittens...

A seal point Siamese baby boy...who hissed.

And a longer haired flame was interesting how many flame point Siamese were at the shelters.

A big old orange cat....a stray...and he had been shaved to fix the mats in his long fur.

Oh was he a lover! We held hands together for awhile while he purred and asked for a forever home....

This beautiful girl with magnificent whiskers and purr....

Given up because her owner was allergic (????) Her name was Ziva. She is good with other cats and kids. I hope she finds a family who understands her.

Then this goth gal. A cat for all wants: orange stripes, white, black, patches and pink nose. Can you guess her name?

Abby of course.

Poor Abby... why couldn't her owners teach their children to be gentle with cats?

Her foster family must really love her: look at all the hearts they drew on her information sheet.

There were other kinds of animals looking for a home too.

A cage full of cockatiels; this one with such a delicate yellow crest and vibrant cheek rouge that I couldn't imagine why its owners let it go.

Bunnies, guinea pigs, rats...

and dogs.

Lots and lots of dogs of every size and color.

Reading why they all were at the shelter was heart breaking.

In some cases their owners had died, or were medically unable to care for their pet any more.

A lot of people gave up their pets because they were relocating.

Others said too many cats, couldn't afford, a divorce...

The many kittens, especially black ones.

Feral kittens being fostered...

I would have happily given them all forever homes if I could
Since I can't do that, I stop by shelters and give them love and cuddles and remind them that they really are wonderful creatures.
And that it wasn't their fault that they were given up.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

It's like Christmas around here!

Time to introduce our new felines to blogdom.

This little guy: We meet him at the Utah Humane Society a few days before we put Tigs down. I fell in love with him; Bernie fell in love with the other orange guy peeking behind him.
We didn't adopt them then; we were still debating if we should try to adopt kittens or adopt adult cats; cats that need a second chance.
Three of our favorite cats were adult adoptions, but we suspected that Hart would have a very hard time sharing his world with adults.

Right after we said good bye to Tigs, we drove to the Humane Society to ease the pain by cuddling some of the cats. The little guy Bernie liked had already been adopted by a couple; my little heart throb had a "kitty cold" and was back in foster care.

A day or so later...we went to the Petsmart near our house to see if some cats that we had admired earlier were still available for adoption. They were...and after holding this young blue point Siamese female, who had been hand raised on a bottle, I knew I had found a wonderful cat.

(But I still wanted an orange cat...)
(Check out those whiskers!)

While I was falling in love with the blue point, Bernie was falling in love with this lynx point siamese "wide body". She was released by a family facing a medical crisis, and the foster family said "Frenchie" was their absolute favorite. Frenchie followed everyone in their family around, and allow children to play with her. Bernie held her while all around us swirled kids, cat carriers, kennels being slammed...and Frenchie didn't even bat an eye. She looked up into Bernie's eyes and just purred and relaxed.

That settled it. I had the little Siamese baby girl wrapped around my neck purring; we switched cats and decided these two would be purr-fect. (As I am typing this, the little girl is walking on my shoulders, checking out what I am typing as if she wants to make sure I am reporting the fact right.)

Frenchie originally was named Emma...the foster family decided she was Frenchie. She snores and has a hoarse meow, and white gloves. Age five, and an arm load of love!

We brought the two girls home and two days later Bernie had to be in South Carolina for a week.
It was up to me to integrate the cat family.
Frenchie and the little girl were locked up together in our wine/library room.
Frenchie let "Bitsy" know that SHE was in charge.
I held Bitsy and let her purr and sleep on me.
The day after Bernie left, I went back to the Humane Society to adopt my orange boy.
The adoption papers had a lot of questions which I answered easily, right up until I reached the one that asked:
Does every member of your household know that you are adopting this cat?
Er....not exactly.
It was late back on the east coast, but I called Bernie anyway.
"I'm at the Humane Society and I want to adopt the orange kitten. Is that OK with you?"
He was kind of stunned...then said "Oh what the heck!"
I came home with my baby orange boy.
I put him down on the floor of the wine/library room and he IMMEDIATELY took off like a shot, chasing a little cat toy like he had lived here forever.

His foster mom had said he was the sweetest kitten she had ever fostered. I think she was telling the truth.
Oh and the people at the Humane Society told me that he had marched up under the muzzle of a German Shepherd about to chow down. The "boy" wrapped his tail around the dog's mouth and dug into the food himself!

Well, Bitsy ran up to join him. It was like two kids hooking up on a playground! The kitty toys were flying!
Frenchie had a "oh my gawd" look and turned her back to the whole celebration.

I decided to call the boy "Tate"...and he wasted no time in getting hissed at by Frenchie, but held his ground and gave her tail a swat just to let her know she wasn't the boss of him!

So Bitsy Blue Eyes is ever so beautiful and sleeps with her paw wrapped around my forearm.
She will likely be renamed as she is growing very, very quickly.
Since she looks so much like my grandkitty Cessa, we are thinking of calling her CJ, for Cessa Junior.
(Plus a very nice librarian that I used to work for went by CJ...Carolyn Jacobson....Carolyn would also be a nice name for her.)

(I wish she would just tell me what she'd liked to be called. Her foster mom named her Madeira...I just don't think that suits her.)

Emma suits does Frenchie.
Hart is having a hard time with Frenchie. She wants to be alpha cat. He currently has a broken meower; perhaps sore throat from hissing at the babies? (Now Tate is on my lap watching the words appear on the screen..)

CJ? Carolyn? Bitsy? Mostly I just call her and the rest of them "Sweetie" because I can't remember their names!

She loves watching NCIS! Smart girl!

Tate (or Zack, or maybe Owen or ???? Just not Mr. Socks, his foster name) loves to nap on me. It is just adorable!

He has taken up bird watching.

I believe that is an Oregon Towhee.

The three new ones sleep with us. Sadly Tigs and Hart used to own the lower left corner of the bed; Hart is not game to sleep with Frenchie.
So in the morning I let him out on the deck....

And we have a special cuddle time together. Hart is eight years old now, and we used to always call him Baby Hart.
Now he is called Old Hart.

Seasons of life...change is constant. I stare at Mt. Olympus, now orange, knowing it will soon be white, then green then orange again...

Each cat is staking claim to their own "spots" in the house.
(See how little he is? He is going to be growing fast though.)p;[

He is fearless. Neighbor cat Missy came to the sliding glass door and Hart came by to make sure she didn't get to come in.

Hart has his perch next to Bernie's desk where he can keep track of all goings on in the garden.

The Boy decided more drastic measures were in order.
Just because Missy probably outweighs him 3 to one is no reason not to stand your ground.

Swat through the glass...let that cat know what is what around here!
(Missy kept looking through all our windows, like "Hey, why didn't you just adopt me? I'm over here all the time anyway!)

Hart is doing OK with the "kids".

I have noticed over the years that Hart has finally gotten the knack of posing for attention when needed.
Our handsome gray tuxedo cat, who misses Tigs and wonders what has happened to his routine.
So that is our "little" cat family.
Eventually we will settle in to names, or just give up and keep calling them all Sweetie.
I think I am going a tad senile.
I'm starting to call EVERYONE Sweetie now days!