Friday, June 27, 2014

How to Make a Crazy Ferret Lady Smile

 

As most know I am the crazy ferret lady and I am always on the look out for ferret items. I am also part of this awesome group of artists that each week put up items for auction and give a percentage to that week’s featured shelter.

You can check us out at Ferret Fabulous Finds Auction House. One of the artists does these amazing figurines and I’ve been wanting one for ages but have always been out bid. When the opportunity came up to win one of her adorable figurines I was glad to help support both the care of a ferret and a friend through the fundraiser.

I am excited to say I won one of the two figurines donated and it when it arrived I didn’t make it out of the post office without opening the package. Tootsie knows how to pack for nothing was broken, chipped, or bent.

This is how she described this little one:

Chocolate Fine Point/ Siamese Point Ferret Pinwheel Pick holder. Back by popular Demand, the PINWHEEL FERRET PICK HOLDER, holding a purple pinwheel that actually spins. He comes with an assortment of picks that you can interchange. Two different American flags, a yellow Umbrella, a purple flag, a Happy Holidays pick and a Happy New Year's pick! You can buy more picks and add to the holidays. His little mouth is open also, looks like he is blowing the pinwheel. He is 3 3/4" high

On the auction site her little figurines start at $30 on average and they are all so cute and her poker playing ferrets are so sweet with the box of pizza between them.

Right now he is sitting on my lap table holding the American Flag but I had to take pictures of him holding all the items that came with him.

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Pictures will never do this little one any justice as you can’t see all the detail that is in this piece. The eyes pick up the light and give him more expression along with his open mouth so that when he is holding the pinwheel it does look like he is blowing on it and when the fan hit the pinwheel it was so cute that I couldn’t help but giggle.

Tootsie Mead mostly sells these cuties on the Ferret Fabulous Finds Auction House page she does do custom orders.

I haven’t named him yet but I do have a few names in mind

Charlie

Chip

Charlton

Chewbacca

What is your favorite

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo

Disclosure: I won this item through a raffle and the opinion is solely mine and I have not been compensated in anyway other than the enjoyment I receive from owning this piece

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

My Road Trip Down Under and I Don’t Mean Australia

 

So another Blog Paws wrapped up on Saturday night and Snotface Critter and my three furkids had a slumber party. The next morning dawned beautiful IMG_2308

Stephine came to collect Snotface and I finished packing up and made sure nothing was left behind. Which can be an adventure in itself when it comes to finding the stash holes.

Checked out and got on the road and proceeded to miss my exit luckily I realized it fairly quickly and got back on track even though it put me behind my own schedule by fifteen minutes.

Then I hit road construction at the border of Nevada and Arizona thirteen miles of slow one lane traffic. Filled up at the last gas station before entering Utah and started up the mountain only to come to a full stop. IMG_2312  Yep it went from sunny to this in a matter of minutes. We sat at this one spot for 20 minutes before inching along for two miles before coming to a stop again. It took me three hours of stop and go traffic to get out of Utah. For the most part it was due to three traffic accidents two of which involved semis.

But it didn’t end there this is what I saw well into the night as I hit Denver at 1 am. Yes that is  snow. IMG_2314  and this is the last photo as the battery in the camera died at this point.

So now I am really behind schedule and for some reason I got it into my head I was on I 70 headed up to I 80 and couldn’t figure out why it was taking so long to get out of Colorado. It wasn’t until the sun came up and I stopped to read the map correctly. I was on 70 that wasn’t the problem.

The problem was I was headed to Kansas. At least I was headed East. But in mapping it out I found that it would add extra time on to my trip that I couldn’t afford so I found a route that got me back on 80 and would only be an hour out of the way. Not an issue right? Yeah right. Found the exit all right and stopped to fill up and made yep you guessed it a wrong turn. I ended up on a dirt road. Oh and it had started to rain…HARD sliding in the mud was not a fun thing in a car.

Got turned around and went the right way but couldn’t seem to find the place to turn because on my map it said one thing and in this tiny town the street said something else. Finally I get headed the right way. What I had thought was a highway turned out to be back roads with nothing but fields on either side.

Rain that went from a soft pitter patter to torrential downpours in a matter of seconds didn’t help my nerves and when the winds started I was completely freaked out as the radio would fade in and out and I would hear bits and pieces about potential tornados happening but I had no idea where they were or I was at that point. What should have been an hour turned into two but I was never so happy to see a state boarder as I was then. I stopped to used the restroom at the local truck stop and heard about the tornado that crossed 70 two miles down from where I had started.

It flipped two semis and killed one of the drivers. Someone was watching out for me as I should have been in that spot if I had stayed on 70.

Finally I am on 80 in Nebraska making up some time as the speed limits work to my advantage. Only stops at this point are to pee and check on the furkids who have it made. Sleeping quarters, food and water without having to get up out of bed and a litter box  for their needs. I am so lucky I have great little travelers.

Darkness fell as I hit Iowa I made it to the half way point before having to take a nap for about an hour before continuing on trying to make up time since the car was suppose to be back on Tuesday. That wasn’t going to happen so I had roomie call and let them know I was going to be a day late. I made Illinois about 3am and was only going to take an hour nap so I wouldn’t hit Chicago at rush hour.

Nope that nap lasted 3 hours and I hit Chicago at rush hour in the pouring rain. Thankfully it wasn’t too bad…until the flashing lights came on in my rearview mirror. I pulled over and waited for the trooper to come up to the window. I jumped when he knocked on my passenger side window. 

He was nice about telling me why he had pulled me over it seems the turn signal didn’t come on in the back when it had dinged in the car. He checked to make sure it wasn’t a blown bulb thankfully it wasn’t . it seems there is a slight delay in the signal dinging in the car and acctually blinking in the back.

He asked where I was headed I told him home as I had just come from a pet conference in Las Vegas and then it seemed like he wanted to talk. I told him I just wanted to get home as this had been one of the worst road trips I had in a very long time. He sent us on our way with just a warning.

Made it through Chicago and into Indiana where the sun decided to come out and beat down on us. I never did figure out how the air/heat worked in that car so the windows stayed down as we raced across Indiana if you can call coming to complete stop midway due to construction on the already confusing off/on ramp system. We stopped at one of the last plazas on the toll road in Indiana as the kids were tired of riding and wanted to stretch their legs which was fine by me as I am sure my rear was beginning to adhere to the seat. So we took an hour break there.  

Once back on the road the construction signs had the road split into two lanes one went down and under and around before meeting back up with the lane I had stayed in only to have my lane turn into two and the sign said to stay in our lanes and both would lead to our exit. I should have known better at this point in the trip. My lane continued past the jersey barriers as the lane I should have been in turned left. Found the exit that turned us around and got back on the route headed into Ohio. I knew once we hit Cleveland it would only be about 4 hours to get home.

We rolled into the driveway at 5pm on Tuesday. Unloaded the car got the furkids out of the carrier and in to their room and this is what Manny did after he wardanced around for ten minutes IMG_2315  washed the car and finally got to sleep in my own bed. Got up the next morning early since the car had to be back at 9am and I had to be at work by 7:30 as my co worker started her vacation that day. Rushed to get there and back only to find that I had my days mixed up and I got to go home and pass out for the rest of the day.

Moral: Don’t trust the weatherman, print out both going to and from an event maps, Give yourself an extra day even if you don’t need it. Never pay at the gas pump with your credit card as they put a hold on the amount twice until they get paid.

 

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo


Tuesday, June 3, 2014

A Shout Out of Thanks and Gratitude to a Great Lady

Over the last few years we have had one spectacular sponsor who made sure we always had a ticket to Blog Paws. She has the most unique sense of humor and just a beautiful smile.

I know we met for sure at the 2011 Blog Paws in Tysons Corners. She was an instant hit with Manny and Marcuz and ever since then we have been blessed by this special Canadian Lady.

She has said that I inspire her which I find unbelievable since it is really her that keeps me on track just by watching her take the world by storm. Evolving from The Pet Book Lady to the The Pet Blog Lady.

Traveling to places that I can only dream about at the moment. Laughing at the antics of her office workers Frank and now Sherman.

This year has been one about growth for me and in part that meant doing things a bit different and one of those things was buying my own ticket to Blog Paws 2015. I can never express how much Lisa’s support has/does mean to all of us at Enlightened Ferret.

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IMG_4559 2013IMG_2147 2014

Thank You for your sponsorship and support and We’ll see you at Blog Paws 2015

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo




Monday, June 2, 2014

Blog Paws Adventure Ferret Style Part Two.

 

So after a glitch during check in ,that was 100 percent my own fault, we get to the room and before I let the kids out of their carrier I do a room assessment to make sure it is ferret proof/safe. For those that have been following this blog for awhile know how I do that but for those just joining this is what it includes.

Trash cans up high

Toilet seat down

Any ledges accessible to ferrets cleared off and one or two towels placed underneath to soften any falls.

Cords lifted up and if need be twist tied together to keep little ones from chewing on them.

Nope not done yet…

Lay on belly and look under anything that has an opening. Glad I did this as under the bed was several tiny rubber bands like the ones you put in a dog’s or baby’s hair, these can cause a blockage, or a choking hazard very easily in a ferret, along with a couple of very stale food crumbs. Found the same under the dresser along with some chocolate chips and a bottle cap. Before anyone says that housekeeping should have done a better job let me say that where these items were no vacuum cleaner would have gotten to and most don’t travel with tiny little slinkies like I do.

Once all of the perceived dangers were removed I let the kids out of their carrier and the first thing they did was to check out under the bed and the dresser. Then it was to look out the window of the eighth floor. IMG_2072  You wouldn’t know that this was overlooking the parking lot the view was amazing. While the kids checked out every little nook and cranny I finally got to take a few moments and clean up from my long drive. Note to self either give yourself an extra day for driving or take two and have a hotel stop scheduled lol.

Before the Keynote session we got to see a live press conference with some of favorite people that being Tom Colin, Yvvone DiVita, Caroline Golon, and Steve Dale just to name a few. IMG_2080 

The exhibit section was open and we got to see our sponsor from last year, Marshall Pet’s Linda Cope, and Marylin ate up the attention. IMG_2084 

We also saw Rocco from To Dog With Love IMG_2085  who thought Marylin was a great new friend. 

We got to see Snotface Critter again and from the way Manny and him went at nose tapping you would have thought they had never met before. IMG_2087  then it was time for the Keynote session with Dino Dogan, Chole Divita, and Lena West IMG_2109  or so we thought. Lena had an emergency and wasn’t able to make it to Blog Paws but in true Lena West style she left us a great message via video and once again her advice resonated with me. I am still trying to figure out exactly what my competing commitments are but I feel I am getting closer to that goal.

Dino also gave some interesting insights about how, and who we should blog for as did Chole with a suggestion about having a spreadsheet with some very valuable lessons. All of which I took as notes on my notebook computer that is over five years old.

The reason I am stating the age of the computer is that during the Keynote it started to make this awful whine that could be heard throughout the room and I was in the very back. The whine got so bad that I had to leave the session before it ended in hopes of figuring out what was wrong with it. Back in my room I saved my notes and powered down the computer and went back downstairs to mingle with old friends and make some new ones.

Manny, Marcuz, and Marylin stayed upstairs to play in the room one of their favorite spots was the ultra soft bed IMG_2106 IMG_2095 IMG_2098 IMG_2101 IMG_2104

The next morning the computer was still doing that awful whining so much that I had to shut it down and leave it in the room. So I could focus on the sessions I wanted to go to. When I came back to put my notes in a more readable order from my journalistic handwriting I was greeted by this screen that said “The file Windows Config was not found” WHAT!!! My computer decided that this was the time to die…nooooooooooooooo and so now I am without a way to tweet, post on Facebook for the moment. Not a good feeling to say. But I went to lunch and back to some sessions that I wanted to be at but I am sure my notes aren’t that good as my mind was split between a dead computer and what was being said.

I know that I am glad  I went to Debbie Glovatsky’s session on how to take great pet photos. While she uses an Nikion camera and I use a Cannon they are simular enough that I could follow along with my camera during the session. I am one of those learners that are visusal, audio, and tactical in short that means I need to see, hear, and do to understand something completely.

Debbie’s three rules were:

Lighting, Focus, and Get Down.

Lighting didn’t mean the use of flash in fact she says DON’T USE FLASH unless you are a professional that knows how to make it work for you. No lighting has to do with the use of natural light.

Focus was to know what you want your subject to be along with what is in the background/foreground that could distract from the photo. In other words make sure there is no clutter around the area you are going to shoot. Also realize that you may not get the perfect shot on the first try. The one photo she showed she snapped 112 photos before getting the perfect one.

Get Down made so much sense when she explained that you need to get down to the animal/pet’s level. We all giggled when she said “You might have to invest in kneepads.” I couldn’t wait to try some of the other tricks she talked about and I will too in another post. These are two of the photos I took  after the session.

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I also attended both of Steve Dale’s sessions and have a mound of paper to go through again but with the amount of information he shared I am glad to have all the reference to go back to.

I also did Pawject Runway and while I had thought Marylin would be doing that she and Manny made it very clear they were done for the day so Marcuz got to participate and he was very well behaved and let me dress him up in a blue and black swirly sarong with lots of glittery stuff. I think we both had a lot of fun and our friend Emmy took some pictures for us.

 IMG_2177 IMG_2179  IMG_2193  We didn’t win but it was fun. Afterwards we went back to the room and Marcuz went and found his siblings to cuddle up with and take a well deserved nap.

I spent most of the evening messing with my computer pushing diffent combinations of buttons until one of the asked if  I wanted to reset my computer. Swallowing the lump in my throat because I knew that meant losing everything that was on my computer I hit the yes button and then miricle of miricles it asked if I wanted to backup the files again I said yes not fully believing that it would save anything. After an hour the computer rebooted to the clean background of a brand new computer. It still whined and I was afraid to unplug it I looked through and found the file that said backup and expected it to be empty but I was pleasently surprised to find that most of the files were saved. What a relief.

I decided to take the morning for me due to the amount of stress I had put myself under from the long eventful drive to Blog Paws the dying computer, and a credit card issue of my own making that was resolved but that doesn’t mean I was having a bad time I was having fun but also know when I am at my introverted level of dealing with people and there were a lot of people this year and I wanted to be ready for the Red Carpet that night. So I basically vegged in the room and the kids loved it as they had my full attention for a couple of hours before passing out in true ferret style.

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Before we knew it Blog Paws had passed and we were at the finale which is always the red carpet event for the Nose to Nose awards. This year Blog Paws donated a bullet proof vest to K9 officer Spenser who is only 2 years old and has been on the job for just over 3 months. IMG_2298 Thanks Kevin from @dogdancingguy for snapping the photo. 

So this was just the preview of other post to come eventually. The next one will be about our trip home.

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo