July 1, 2012

Our Little Hunters

I have been meaning to post this for the past two days, but only got around to it today.

So now that Max and Leia are big kitties, they are allowed to go in and out as they please. They spend most of the day just alternating equally between spending time outside and inside. Usually when they’re inside, they eat, sleep, play and clean themselves. Outside, they like to roam around, chase one another, stalk through the tall grass, explore the woods, and HUNT. Yes; they have started to hunt.

Off the job… for now.

I’m so proud of them. The first sign of their hunting skills surfacing was when they chased the ants around our kitchen. One day, I woke up and walked into the kitchen to find Leia staring intently at the floor. I didn’t really know what she was looking at until I walked over and squatted down to check it out. There was a little black ant squirming around under her death stare. Then, out of nowhere, she swatted the ant and followed it over to where it landed. She continued to do this until I left the room. I was laughing my head off because it was such a funny sight.

The next sign was their ability to catch moths out of the air, on our step. During the evenings and night, we could see them jumping around outside of our door. Max and Leia would leap and catch a moth out of the air, then land with it in their paws. Sometimes they liked to try and eat them, which disgusted me to the point where I had to shoo them away from sight. We also found dead June bugs on our step, scattered all about the next morning.

Since then, they progressed in hunting skills. We found little dead moles around our property for the last few weeks. We’ve also witnessed Leia walking towards the step with a little baby squirrel in her mouth one day. It was still alive however, and my sister chased Leia to free it. I doubt that the poor thing survived though. Just in the past couple of days my mother noticed that Max had a little mouse or mole in his mouth. He was just sitting on the step, with the little creature hanging between his teeth. I don’t know if they learned this from Ginger, or if the whole thing is coming from instinct alone.

One other thing that I do know they have learned from Ginger is the signal to let them outside. They walk up to the door, stretch up against the door frame, and scratch it. We don’t really mind the scratch marks. At least the sound alerts us of their intentions. I know that Leia likes to do this, but so far I haven’t gotten Max to do it. He just sits there and meows. Which reminds me of another thing. Ginger has recently started meowing to get attention. It is just so unexpected, because he never meows. Ever. I thought that it was one of the kittens meowing when I heard him first, but when I walked over to where the meow came from, there was just Ginger sitting there. He definitely learned this from the kittens, because it is totally out of character for him. It makes me smile when I think about their subtle connection through the little things they learn from each other. The naïve and young can sometimes teach a thing or two to the wise and old.

Who called me old?

June 29, 2012

New Possibilities *

I’m excited to announce that today I finally decided to start thinking about getting another budgie, or maybe even another small companion bird for myself. I am only really thinking at this point, but there is a great chance that I will be getting another one in the near future.

It feels so weird to think that I might be renewing my flock; starting out small. I might get a couple, a few, or even just one. Who knows? I might actually take the plunge into owning larger birds and get a cockatiel. But these are all only ideas. I know that I will have to take this all under serious and careful consideration soon enough if I want this to become a reality.

My Cousin’s Late Cockatiel

The reason for this sudden idea is celebration. I have recently just passed another grade in my high school, and to celebrate my parents want to get me something to show how proud they are of me. They asked for me to decide and I originally didn’t have a clue about what I want for a gift. I realized that I already have a lot more than anyone can ask for, and I’m truly happy to be so lucky.

Then I got to thinking. What do I want that I don’t already have? No, not another gadget. No jewelry, clothes or makeup. No extra money. No trips to anywhere special. Maybe another book would be nice, but I don’t really have any particular one in mind. Nothing popped into my head. I didn’t have any really wants or needs at the moment. Then inspiration hit me. Do I want another bird? Do I have the money? Do I have enough time and space? Do I have the support of my parents? Do I have the commitment? Surprisingly yes; yes; most likely, depending on the bird I get; somewhat; and yes, I do have the commitment.

There are a few reasons why I don’t think I have the full support of my parents. One being their initial reluctance to get me another bird at this time. When I asked my father about it, he didn’t seem to mind. When I asked my mother, however, she wasn’t convinced that I should really get one. She is worried about the timing of it, above all. The reasons she believed it was bad timing were these: 1. Since it is summer, I might not have enough time for a bird. 2. There is a possibility that we will go on trips during the break and have to leave the bird home alone. AND 3. It will be better to get it when school starts again.

Well, after some time of consideration, I came up with some answers to these worries.

1. I personally believe that summer gives me an abundance of extra time, meaning that I will be spending lots of it with the new bird. During the break, I will be staying at home for babysitting most of the time. That means that if I do get a bird, I will be available for most hours of the day to spend time with it.

Kasper, sitting on my finger.

2. The only trips that we know of right now are my trip to a university, and my parents’ trip to Kansas, both during August. My trip will last for a week, through August 17-24. My parents trip will be done before this; they should be back around the twelfth. That means that there will be someone at home through the duration of these trips. I won’t be happy leaving my bird during my trip, but I know that there will be enough time between then and now to settle it in at home. To make it comfortable enough to stay there with only my family. It is only a week that I’ll be gone, after all.

3. I really don’t think that it would be a good idea to get the bird when school starts again. Really. The first couple of months of getting a bird are usually the most crucial part of it all. Between getting it settled in, starting relationships with bonding and socializing, setting boundaries and rules by reinforcing the bird, and establishing a healthy diet; there will have to be enough time to get it all done. I already know that once school starts, the chance for these will completely evaporate. If I begin with these during summer, all of the important parts of introducing a bird to its new home will be over and done with by the time school begins. That will definitely put my mind to ease. If I had to do all of this during school season, the time for this would have to contend with homework, assignments, projects, studying, and school-related activities like sports. If I finish the initial introduction during summer, that would leave me more time to just hang out, carefree with my bird. I wouldn’t have to worry about it being uncomfortable with its surroundings, having trouble with its diet, not having a relationship with me, or anything like that. It would be nice to have a cooperative bird by the time school begins so that I could have it out with me during all of those studying and homework hours; where I wouldn’t have to give it my undivided attention for more than an hour of one-on-one time each day.

I want my parents to understand the points that I made before they say a definite NO.

The other reason I don’t think I have complete support from them is because of their reluctance to bring my birds to a vet. My father has partial belief that they are ‘replaceable’; not important enough to spend money on for a surgery or medicine. He won’t flat-out admit it, but I can tell that this is what he is thinking,

This is mostly true for the smaller birds like budgies and finches that we’ve had, since they cost so little in the first place. Because of this, I wondered what he would think of bringing a more expensive bird to the vet. Like a cockatiel, or lovebird. He is always worried about ‘wasting money’, but I have another plan in store that could also solve this problem. I plan on using the money I earn during summer to put away in a bank account for pet emergencies. Like an emergency stash. This will be my private ‘pet insurance’ for more expensive trips to the vet.

Money, money, money!

I’m not too worried about the space and time for a bird. It really depends on what I will be getting though. If I get an untame budgie, for example, I’ll have the space and just about enough time. If I got a hand-tame cockatiel, the time won’t be as much of a problem as the space needed. These I’ll keep in mind, but I don’t think I’ll have a problem with either of them.

We’ll see how this goes, and hopefully I might have a new, little fid within the next week or so. Wish me the best of luck!

June 26, 2012

Another App Put to Good Use

While we are still talking about my new iPad, I thought that I would mention this really great app called Pocket. Pocket is an app that basically allows you to save great websites that you find while browsing, so that you can read them at a later time. It has beautiful graphics, and is the perfect app to use for saving and reading articles from the Internet so that you can read them at any time you want.


A Peak in my Pocket

What I like about this app is that the articles you save on your account will automatically sync with any other gadgets that you have the Pocket app on. These will be available to view at any time; even when there is no Wi-Fi connection. To save a link, you simply go browsing through the web; email the link to your Pocket account; and open the Pocket app to refresh. It gives you a whole introduction of how to get started when you download it anyways.


Different Viewing Options (Page, or Scrolling)

The reason why I mentioned this app is because of what I use it for. I use it to save the links of informative articles and websites that I come upon while browsing through information on pet birds in general. It sorts these articles in such a way that it feels like it is a book; custom made by myself. The information is well presented, I can add tags to easily find the ones I want, I can search key words to quickly find the information I want, and all of this is done in one little app. It is one of the best research aids that I have ever come across for online info, and I think that any bird owner that also owns an Apple interactive device that is compatible with Pocket (iPads, iPods, iPhones, etc.) should use this awesome app.


The Different Themes (Light, Dark, and Sepia)

You can choose your very own tags to attach to each article. These are a great way to have a way to sort and organize the articles, but also have some way to easily access specific types of content. You also have the option of changing the details in the article like font, font size, content alignment, page theme color, and page flipping (on/off). There is also a feature that allows you to share the article view with other people via Twitter, Facebook, Email, and so on. I’m definitely in love with this app.


Different Sharing Options

If you have any more questions about Pocket, you can feel free to ask me below in the comment section. Thanks for reading!

June 24, 2012

Using My New iPad for the Greater Good

So, I haven’t mentioned this, but I won an amazing first generation iPad back in March. I got it from winning 2nd place in this logo contest that I entered during February. Since accepting it, I have definitely gotten a lot of use out of it. Apple products are quite amazing really, and this iPad is no exception. The apps on here are handy and fun, the music is amazing, and I have great Wi-Fi connection. The best part of all this however, is that I now have an amazing app for WordPress usage!

The app let’s me easily update, edit, and publish any posts I’d like. It gives me pretty much every basic feature that is available on the WordPress dashboard, and I can even preview the posts too. The layout will take some getting used to, but I think that this app will come in handy. It already has actually. This will be only the start of many more posts coming from my iPad.

Now that summer break is here, I think that I will have a reasonable amount of free time to spend both on my blog, and the forums. I know that I will be happy to get back into the swing of things again, starting with posting this and updating the blog. All of those promises I made a while ago will soon be fulfilled. The great hiatus of posts will end; starting today.

To start us off, I will post a few pictures of a stray cat I mentioned a long time ago in the post “‘Spring’-ing Back into Things” and maybe another post.





    His name is Oreo!
April 28, 2012

Snow? On Saturday?

There was a surprising sight that I witnessed this morning when I woke up. There was snow falling to the ground. Snow! What are the odds? There were only really small specks flying around, but it was still the real thing. I’m only surprised because it’s spring, but the weather is still a bit off with the season. Hopefully it won’t go into a full-out snowstorm! Just seeing these specks of snow brings on tons of memories like this:


Come on spring, bring on the heat!

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