ellenmillion: (Default)
Aging pets are hard. Just, hard.

A few nights ago, Norway tried to get up the front steps and failed. There are only two, and they aren't that steep, but he was having a bad back legs day. We put out the truck ramps for him, but they are metal, and although strong, sort of rattly. He looked at them, he looked at me, and said nope. I did finally get him up them with a firm hand on his collar, but it wasn't much fun. The next day, he ignored them and hopped down the steps. That night he got up the steps with effort. The following night, he walked right up them. It's so variable!

He's not the only one having issues with steps. Velcro's catbox and bed are on the main floor of our house, and her food and second waterdish are upstairs, where Norway can't help himself. I've pondered moving her food down because she clearly doesn't enjoy the stairs anymore, but figured it was the only exercise she was getting at this point. Yesterday, however, I watched her fall down them twice, and that's the end of that. The first time was just a few steps as she was going up. She picked herself up and powered up them, so I figured it was just one of those ungraceful cat moments they pretend you don't witness. But shortly after, she came down them and sort of got away from herself and ended up upside down at the bottom rocking in shock with her little extra toes in the air. She mewed at me in a very disappointed way when I came to help her up and spent the rest of the day sulking in her bed.

She's been missing the catbox more regularly lately, too. Oh, she tries! There are no accidents around the house, but sometimes she just barely gets into the catbox and the important parts aren't there yet. I've got puppy pads down, so cleanup isn't bad.

Poor old lady cat. Poor old man dog.

It seems like a lot of friends lately are losing beloved fur family members; Facebook seems to show me a few each week lately. I suspect it's just that I'm hyper-aware of them right now, because I know that my time with my own fur friends is not going to be a lot longer.

Have some art!

I recently did this for Portrait Adoption:


This one started life as a Sketch Fest sketch, in very rough form, and got refined at a gaming session.

A little over 800 words yesterday, slogging onward. The not-a-book is about 16k. I do not anticipate getting writing time today, as we have a playdate over quiet time. I've also got two more #junicorn pieces done (but not scanned), and am 1 behind (not counting today).

In less thrilling news, I finished the laundry, cleaned out the toaster with the air compresser, vacuumed upstairs (downstairs, too, but that's daily), and Guppy helped me measure and cut wood blocks for the woodshed.



And when I say helped, I don't even mean that with air-quotes! She fetched the blocks and drew the lines while I held the square. (She's wearing gloves because it's splintery treated lumber, not because it's cold.)

We made GREAT progress on the shed over the weekend, and we had our neighbors over for dinner, which was simply delightful, and we got a date night to go watch Guardians of the Galaxy 2 and have sushi. There have definitely been good times.

I'm growing on my bangs, and the irritation level is about a 6 right now. I've promised to try it until September.
ellenmillion: (Default)
Poor Guppy did not appreciate being left at preschool this morning and chased me to the door in tears. The teacher is awesome about lifting her up and letting her wave through the window and getting her calmed down. I'm expecting a leveling up event of some sort, but it could also be that she went to sleep a little late last night.

I'm drowning my feelings of guilt in a whipped cream hot cocoa from the fabulous sipping streams and getting ready to write a little.

Went for a walk last night on the crunch snow with Guppy and Norway. My poor old man dog, he is not doing so well. He broke through the snow crust at one point and had to scrabble really hard to get out as I was coming to get him. He ended up dragging his back half for several hundred feet before his back legs started working again, and then limped and staggered the rest of the way home. He still wants to get up and go - so many interesting smells and things to go see! - but his body is just starting not to work so well. He's 13 now, and for a 90 lb dog, that works out to about 90 years old. He bunny-hops pretty frequently now (something old dogs do because their back legs won't comfortably support their weight individually anymore) and if things are slippery, his back legs have a tendency to go out from under him altogether. We've got extra rugs down in the house for him, since we've got slick laminate flooring, and he gets pain pills when he seems to need them. He's still eager to go out, but we have to be extra careful with him. He wants to run, but he shouldn't.

It's tough getting old.

Writing now, and some art things.

Hug your pets.
ellenmillion: (TW argh)
Some mornings, this getting up early to write thing works better than others. This morning? The giant dog ate my yogurt while I was trying to convince Guppy that it was still early and she could pretend to go back to sleep... (which has not worked in the slightest)
ellenmillion: (bzzz...)
My dog smells like roses and feels like a baby duck.

Seriously, I'm not sure he's ever been so clean and beautifully brushed before in his life. I took him to a local groomer, and she did a STUNNING job on our big tangled oaf. She filed down his toenails and brushed his teeth, even. If anyone needs a smelly dog fixed, let me know. I highly recommend this gal.

New coloring book proof is ready to pick up, but that won't happen until tomorrow. I got orders out and updated my laptop and did no writing or artwork. Itching to remedy that last. Did get some client programming done.

ellenmillion: (kativa1)
My genius continues! I am on portrait #1760, and chugging through the portraits. Will I finish in January? Hopefully! (But somewhat unlikely... there are still a LOT left to do.) When I can't stand checkboxes any longer, I poke at programming and taxes. I have finished an incomplete bit of the claim code that lets me hold a portrait for a specific client WITHOUT having to through the submitted description section of the site. I'm not sure why it wasn't finished up before - everything was in place to make it work seamlessly. The site will also now SHOW the claimed portraits correctly, which it wasn't before.

And speaking of submitted descriptions, I also have updated the example page. It used to show only currently claimed pieces. That was okay if we had several active descriptions and people were actually producing artwork, but during slow periods, there was absolutely nothing to see. Not the best impression to make to a prospective client. Now, it shows everything adopted, claimed, or available, that WAS created for a submitted description. :) It's pretty impressive, actually, and a fun trip down memory lane if you were a PA member back in the day: http://portraitadoption.com/sd_teasers.php

Only 3 of the 8 portraits I posted yesterday have had color-claims! You can still pick one to dictate: http://ellenmillion.livejournal.com/1496861.html

It continues to be brutally cold in town (-40ish), but a balmy -22 in the hills where I live.

I made Guppy go outside yesterday - we had skipped the day before, but I can't let TWO days go by without going outside. So, we wrestled into snowpants and coats and hats and mittens and boots, and she had a grand time romping while I gathered wood. Norway got to come inside for a little while - mystified by this requirement and not at all bothered by the cold outside (I was worried for my old man dog, but didn't need to be). He bounded back out happily went back to his run to lounge in the snow and dig for frozen hare heads.

I don't THINK he finds them often, but the other night he was playing with something and I asked him to bring it to me. Ptooey! Dead hare head. No sign of the rest of the body. Just a frozen, eyeless, hairy, slobbery hare head. Dogs are gross.
ellenmillion: (thud)
The house is very strangely quiet for a Sunday. Monsterus minimus, after days of resisting naps, was acting tired SUPER early, and went quietly to sleep without fuss. She's also eating like a hollow thing, so I'm wondering if we won't see her shoot up another two inches over the next couple of days.

Working on coloring books - emails, answering messages, updating claims, laying out pages, formatting PDFs. Five of the seven titles are funded! And we're less than $200 to the next one!

I also want artists to know: you guys are eligible for wholesale pricing on any titles you're included in! You do not have to meet wholesale minimums, but you do have to pay shipping. You MAY pledge through the Kickstarter to make your wholesale order.

You may also pledge by Paypal or use your EMG credits, if you do not have a Kickstarter account. These purchases WILL count towards our stretch goals. (I saw another project do this and thought it looked like a fair amount of work to keep track of, but it certainly seemed to get them an number of sales they otherwise wouldn't... there's only a week left, so I'm game to try!)

Got a few more wheelbarrows of wood moved yesterday in the rain, and yet a few more today. There are still a few to go, but the original pile is shrinking and shrinking. It's sort of magical.

Yesterday, I went for a long walk with Norway. We took the longest loop we usually do - all the way down into the swamp and up across the power lines and through the woods. I don't know how many miles - probably not that impressive a distance, but rough terrain and steep paths. Both of us came back soaking wet and smiling, despite the rain and cold.



(Let's be honest, he didn't even NOTICE the rain and cold...)
ellenmillion: (doh)
I'm out of Dr. Who to stream.

Season 7?! When will you be out on Netflix??

Woe! Woe!

Also, I took out the Christmas Tree, which was getting brittle and a little faded, but not actually shedding its needles yet. Norway the brilliant caught sight of it as the sun finally rose, and was convinced it was a MOOSE. Or maybe a YETI. Next to the HOUSE! OH NOES! ... and spent about 20 minutes barking at it.

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