Chron story (2/1/06) "Note to azaleas: Chill"

2/13/06 EBD observation: azaleas near peaking

2/11-12/06: light freezes; some penta damage

Feb. observations

  • erlicheers trying to bloom

  • meyer lemon blooming

  • carolina jessamine blooming lightly (early- / mid-Feb.)

  • pentas blooming lightly

  • volunteer cilantro growing well

  • sage growing very well

  • serrano peppers blooming/setting (before freeze at least)

  • bradley pears blooming (early Feb.)

  • redbuds peaking (mid-Feb.)

  • feb. 22--crocus started blooming in front yard

  • live oaks starting to bud


  • fig budding

  • ripe serranos

  • sage just starting to bloom; growing well

  • volunteer cilantro growing v. well; needs to be thinned

  • crocii and narcissus fizzled (too hot?)

June 23, Chron story: Buffalo Bayou's new park passes first test

August 19, 2006 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)


brontemagazineTime to clean out the magazine rack.

Like all other cats, Brontë has the ability to make herself comfortable and sleep anywhere.

Her favorite perch is actually draped over the arm of one of the couches. Bevo claims the back of the other couch, and Faust goes for the green chair.

May 23, 2004 in Bronte | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Painting with Cats.

I don't know why I thought the cats would behave while I was painting upstairs.

When I had my back turned Faust jumped up on the just-painted built-in shelves and walked across them then jumped back down on the recently refinished floors and tracked little white paw prints across the room.

At some point later in the evening he brushed against the shelves and came away looking sort of like a zebra.

Yay for easy to clean up latex paint. And hardwood floors instead of carpet.

Everyone was locked in the TV room while I resumed painting today.

May 17, 2004 in Faust | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Carnival of the Cats #9.

This week's Carnival of the Cats is online. I even remembered to send a link from here.

May 16, 2004 in Weblogs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Fearless Faust.

faustisfearlessAnd the dogs are oblivious.

As I (slowly) make my way through three years of archived digital photos I'm pulling out the better pet pics for eventual cataloguing.

I was specifically looking for this one because it well illustrates the usual interaction between our pets -- complete disinterest. The dogs are inhaling their dinner while Faust calmly drinks their water. We finally gave up keeping separate water dishes for the cats since they almost always drank from the dogs' water. Dog slobber adds flavor, maybe.

Top to bottom: Major, Faust, Tex

Continue reading "Fearless Faust."

May 16, 2004 in Faust, Major, Tex | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Cavorting in the Catnip.

Bevo (left) and Brontë (right) taking advantage of their catnip patch. For some reason, Darin always scolds me for letting them wallow in the patch. I thought that was why we planted it in the first place!


originally posted 3/21/2004 on garden spot.

May 1, 2004 in Bevo, Bronte | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Cat Counseling.

Faust may need a referral to a catnip rehab clinic.

As a special treat, I bought a bag of catnip today. After giving all three cats a small taste, I put it in the utility drawer in the kitchen.

During dinner, we heard suspicious noises in the kitchen. Suspecting that one of the cats was snacking on the salmon goodies we left on the counter, I went to check. Sure enough, Bevo was on the countertop, apparently licking salmon morsels. Pitching her off the counter, I noticed Brontë hanging out in the corner trying to look innocent; Faust was nowhere in sight. I returned to my own meal.

After we finished eating and cleaning up dishes in the kitchen, I realized Faust was suspiciously absent. Checked all the usual hideouts; no Faust. Remembering strange kitchen noises while we ate, I decided to check the cabinets under the counter. And there was Faust.

I thought it strange that he had stayed in the cabinet for 45+ minutes since he has demonstrated in the past his ability to escape at will from accidental cabinet entrapment. I also didn't recall him being in the vicinity during dinner prep when I opened the cabinet.

Later on I was back in the kitchen for more cleaning and opened the cabinet to put something away. Inside the cabinet was a positive mess -- catnip everywhere. And a very chewed up, empty bag.

Faust had figured out that he could get into the drawer hiding the catnip stash by way of the cabinet underneath*. Very clever. From inside the cabinet there is a gap of approximately two inches between the top of the drawer and the bottom of the counter. Faust had blindly fished out the catnip bag from there.

Now I remember why I always kept catnip in the refrigerator in the past.

* Why did Faust not just open the drawer while perched on the counter? Because it's heavy and sticks a bit. No doubt he tried the drawer first.

March 24, 2003 in Faust | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Cat Codes.

First seen here (link via Feeny). One of Feeny's people then saw fit to create a nifty online form for the cat codes.

Brontë: "MX" Ot+W+G Y/Y 8.8 X L+ W++ C-- I++ T+/T+++ A-- E++ H S++ V F- Q--- P++ B+ PA++ PL++
Faust: "MX" B G+Y/G+Y 10.8 Y L W C-- I++ T+/T--- A E H S+ V++ F+ Q+++ P B-- PA- PL-
Bevo: "AS" B+W Y/Y 2.8 X L- W- C-- I++ T+/T+++ A++ E- H+ S+ V++ F Q+ P B PA- PL-

January 4, 2003 in Bevo, Bronte, Faust | Permalink | Comments (0)

Visiting the Vet.

Today the cats made their annual trip to the vet for checkups and shots. Surprisingly, this visit was relatively uneventful in that Faust didn't bite the vet.

All received a clean bill of health; Brontë is responding well to the flea treatment.

The worst part of today's trip was getting all three cats into their carriers. They know that when the carriers come out of storage, a trip to the vet must be forthcoming. And so three cats who are typically very much underfoot become quite scarce.

Today's hiding places weren't very inspired. Faust and Brontë hid together under the upstairs bed, but couldn't get out of reach since there is a lot of other stuff stowed away under the bed. Bevo seemed to think the seat of a dining chair would offer sufficient cover; sure, the chair was pushed in to the table, but this is one of her known refuges.

June 1, 2002 in Bevo, Bronte, Faust | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

The Watering Can.

Summer 1999.

The cat sitter came to feed and water and play with the cats a day and a half before. This time, when she opened the door, Faust and Brontë didn't come running to greet her. Not thinking too much of it, she put the mail and newspapers on the kitchen table and refilled the food and water bowls. Still no cats.

Becoming a little anxious, she checked all the rooms and started looking under furniture. She soon found a wide-eyed Faust under the bed, but still no Brontë. Eventually, under the couch there was the missing cat -- with her head inside a metal watering can.

Fearing the worst, the sitter grabbed one of Brontë's legs and -- much to her surprise and relief -- the cat abruptly sprang to life (but couldn't do much with a watering can as big as herself on her head).

Hauling Brontë out from under the couch, the sitter tried to free her from the watering can. No amount of twisting or pulling (within reason) was working.

The sitter tried calling the owner's boyfriend (who hadn't been trusted to care for the cats), but he was on the other side of Houston and found the situation too amusing to offer helpful advice.

Not finding any tools in the apartment appropriate for freeing a cat from a watering can, the sitter decided to take Brontë to her own house to try wire cutters.

With Brontë wrapped in a towel, she left the apartment.

Driving a car with a manual transition while cradling a cat and a watering can was something of an adventure in itself.

Once wire cutters were obtained the sitter was able to enlarge the opening in the watering can enough for Brontë to pull out her head. Brontë's recovery was swift; she promptly inhaled a can of tuna and, to this day, appears none the worse for the experience.

as far as we can tell, brontë suffered no lasting damage from the ordeal, although the sitter did experience a bit of emotional trauma.

we will never know why brontë put her head in the watering can, but our best guess is that she and faust were chasing / playing with a bug and when the bug entered the can, brontë went after it. we suspect she did not learn anything from the experience.

May 26, 2002 in Bronte | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)