Posted in adoption, animal welfare, auction, cats, celiacs, community, creativity, crowdfunding, depression, emergency, empath life, faith, life, peace, storage, urgent

2/2: #crowdfunding and #cats

Still need funds to save storage and get on with life. I’ve received two donations totaling a bit over 100, but still need about 600 more.

******

This week has been tough for me. And tonight is the anniversary of losing JoJo. Two years ago, one week after my eviction hearing, I rushed her to Dove Lewis. She wouldn’t have made it to dawn. She hid her congestive heart failure all too well.

She was my soul. We both had the same food issues (hers was an allergy to wheat and I have Celiacs). She was right there, in my face, when I wasn’t feeling well to provide me with some purr therapy to help me feel better.

She chose me in such a clear and obvious way. I was her only human for 14 years. She was 11 months old. I adopted her February 2003, and she passed away February 2017, a month shy of turning 15.

She was a ginger force to be reckoned with. Opinionated, loving, sassy cat. My first indoor cat.

******

I’ll post stuff tomorrow. Tonight is quiet.

~A

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Posted in auction, cats, chronic pain, community, disability, faith, family, friends, gratitude, life, peace, storage

1/3: Long day *thud*

Thank you to those who helped me get to a smidge over halfway on storage. Saved it from auction and just have to get the remaining amount paid up before the end of the month.

I got it taken care of on my lunch hour from work, then headed back and worked the rest of the afternoon. My internship doesn’t pay a lot and is only 16 hours a week. Hence also looking for another job. Then I caught the bus and headed to a task, which I’m just heading home from now. The stress and constant go, go, go of today has me wiped out, but back to work tomorrow. Just the internship.

I just hope the elevator in my building is finally fixed by the time I get home. It’s been down for a week. I’m only on the 2nd floor, but the stairs are still difficult. And I can’t do much grocery shopping until it is fixed.

Gonna go home, feed and snuggle the cat (who will likely be rather peeved at me for not being home to feed her at her usual time), then get some sleep. Tomorrow is a new day. Hopefully one with a bit less stress.

~A

Posted in activism, artsy stuff, cats, community, crowdfunding, observations, poetry, society, storage, urgent, writing

12/30: Not Quite Utopia (#poetry)

Felines peaceful
Guardians of the Windowsill
Watching over all they can see.

Even if we lived the Utopian Dream.
With no war or hate.
One where all people smiled.

No one lived in Fear.
A pure state with no Greed or Corruption.
No dictators Drunk on their own

Perceived Power.
We would still have cats hell-bent on knocking things over
And chasing each other at 3am.

~APA 2001

(Written in 2001, but still accurate AF)

[Still seeking help for storage. There may be something in the works, but I don’t know how much it’ll be. Spread the word.]

Posted in anxiety, auction, cats, crowdfunding, depression, disability, emergency, family, friends, health, life, observations, society, storage, urgent

12/30: Feline Lucidity, Being Disabled & #crowdfunding (28 hours)

So, the usual #crowdfunding plea… still need a lot of help to get there.

  • Total $1141, have a bit over $100. Roughly $125. PP is the only way.
  • Once it’s caught up this time, I can move some into my apartment and then the rest into a smaller, cheaper storage unit.
  • Yes, the cost of what can be replaced is a LOT more than what I owe. Many things, like my coffee table and fabric, I can’t replace with the exact same things. Fabric has print runs like clothing. It rarely returns the next year.
  • I’ll be able to handle the lower rent now that I have some steady income.

So, my cat is dealing with being her usual ditzy self. Right now, we have a small bird that’s torturing her. It sits on the balcony above ours and tosses the seed rejects down to hit our windows.

Portia has helped me through a lot the last two years. We lost her big sister a week after the eviction hearing in 2017. She has been my grounding force during all of this. If she isn’t being an absolute dork, running around as if her tail is on fire (it isn’t, I’m pretty sure), she’s being a snuggle bug loafing on my chest or tapping my shoulder or leg if she wants my attention.

I know there are more goofy stories, but my brain is having mid-afternoon blahs. I’m also in a conversation on FB about people who talk shit about disabled people…. yanno, like me.

I’ve been disabled since I was 17. Almost 30 years now. I’ve had good runs with little pain and then bad runs where every day hurts. Seven years ago, I fell down some stairs. Then a year ago, I fell on the same spot as 29 years ago and seven years ago. Same hip every damn time. So, pain is getting progressively worse. Not much the docs can do except manage the pain.

This is why I want to start going to a gym. Not just for weight loss but to strengthen my back and legs to minimize the amount of time I’m in excruciating pain. I’ve been like this long enough that I know the difference between good pain and bad pain. I’ve had enough bad pain for a long while now.

I need exercise and my mattress back out of storage. Sleeping on the floor is hell on my back.

~A

Posted in anxiety, auction, C-PTSD, cats, community, crowdfunding, dragon, emergency, faith, friends, life, PTSD, storage, urgent

12/29: …The Dragon Lyfe Chose Me (#crowdfunding and stuff)

Crowdfunding will be at the top of these posts. $1141 needed. One donation today so far of $25. Please feel free to share my posts. I do have a little in my checking, but the next task I have won’t be until Wednesday, which will be too late.

What would get saved: My mattress and other household things I haven’t had (or needed to while homeless) since March 2017. Furniture, music, movies… some could get replaced, but many of the things I own are out of print or old and not available anymore. I have a coffee table in there that is vintage Mid-Century Modern that’s been through a few re-stainings. Once I get it out, a friend and I are going to tackle returning it to its original color. I’ve had it 30 years. My mattress is a bit important at this point because I’ve been sleeping on the floor with little padding for over two months now and I’m feeling it in my injured back and all over.

Dragoning: I call myself a dragon because I like to collect things (working on managing it better), don’t like to socialize, and prefer the company of other creatures than humans (like my cat). My nickname for 20 years has been Penguin, so a Dragon named Penguin fits.

Life has always affected me in different ways. Recent stuff, such as being homeless, has made me grumpier than normal. My C-PTSD hasn’t helped.

Portia, my cat (in the image) has been my saving grace. She’s 13 now, but still loves to snuggle.

~A

Posted in activism, animal welfare, anxiety, bugaboos, cats, community, crowdfunding, emergency, faith, family, friends, homelessness, job hunting, life, observations, peace, politics, research, society, storage, urgent

12/26: Personal Projects (and #crowdfunding)

[Also #crowdfunding, as time is running out on storage. $1200 needed before the 1st. PP link in the sidebar. Please share any of my posts.]

I have a few personal projects that will be incorporated into this blog. One will be a static page. The second will likely be just a post. Same for the third one. Then there’s the Big Kahuna. That one is semi-secret, namely because I want to try to get a grant to do the research. But it’s a massive project.

The first post project is about Medicare For All. I’ve had discussions on FB with people about what is being pitched and what I think it should have. Admittedly, I haven’t delved too much into it yet. It’ll take me a bit. I do know, from my own personal observations, that there are things from Medicare as it is right now that need an overhaul. My parents were on it, being they were older from the get-go. I saw issues with the system from my dad’s experiences in caring for my mom as her Alzheimer’s worsened. And for his own health.

I also don’t think what we have for Medicaid is perfect either. Same for private insurance. My ideal is to take the best aspects of all three systems and make THAT Universal Healthcare. But I’ll go into more detail later.

The second post project is more a personal observation of the systems in place for the homeless population here in PDX. Some organizations are doing just fine, others… well, they need a LOT of work. And an institutional spanking because they’re trying to do shit they don’t have the staff/funding/training for. I’ll do my best to dissect the good, bad, and the ugly.

I won’t go into too much detail about the Big Kahuna. But if anyone knows where a solo researcher can get a grant for a social science project, let me know. That one will likely surface over on a barely-started blog of mine that has nothing going yet. Life and all.

Then there’s the static page project. I can do a fair chunk of the searching for links myself, but if anyone knows of non-profits in their state/country, let me know. This project is about FERAL CAT RESOURCES. My intent is to list links and some info on TNR (Trap Neuter Release) programs in all 50 states of the US, hopefully Canadian provinces as well. And if there are any, overseas in other countries.

I think that’s it for now. I’ll try to get back to the poetry posts at some point as well. I just haven’t felt really super creative of late.

~A

Posted in adoption, anxiety, C-PTSD, cats, community, depression, disability, family, food, food cravings, health, housing, job hunting, life, nanowrimo, poverty line, PTSD, storage, urgent, writing

10/31: FOOD! (and a bit o’begging) and #NaNoWriMo

(trigger warning: talk of suicidal ideation and PTSD further down) Pardon the wonky spacing…

Here’s hoping that since I was able to log into my EBT account to check my balance, that it’s been reinstated. I tried logging in over the weekend on my phone and it said it couldn’t access the account. Just now, I was able to on the CB. Tomorrow is the day I get to see if they’ve changed my amount.

I haven’t gotten any letters (picked up mail yesterday). I definitely need those food stamps right now. If anyone has every seen my fridge/freezer and pantry from before the eviction, you’d understand why the barren landscape of the fridge and freezer (and somewhat barrenness of the cabinets I have now) is so daunting.

I’ve almost always had frozen meat of different kinds, as well as veggies and other things… and the only things in the freezer right now are a wedge of local bleu cheese and the packs of Dorot minced garlic and basil. And a couple of ice packs. No ice cube trays to make ice. No chicken, no nothing. The fridge usually has cheese and sauces and lots of other things… not right now. So, food stamps for November are SUPER important. I need to restock. Badly.


I was raised to have a full pantry and fridge/freezer (although my mother took that to excess with a second full sized freezer crammed to the hilt). This was so that if one couldn’t go to the store, we could still pull from what we had and make dinner or whatever. I’m not a huge fan of frozen veggies anymore, but I’ll gladly still stock some up for backup needs.
Frozen chicken breasts and pork chops… stew beef… you name it. A frozen dinner or two on occasion (Amy’s Rice Mac and Cheese is amazing and awesome comfort food). A container or two of crumbled hard cheeses in the freezer… Feta and Bleu usually. Grated Parm… all in the freezer. Yes, you can freeze them. I LOVE making scrambles with some of the cheese sprinkled in at the last minute… 

So, here’s hoping my food money got reinstated.


I’ve pretty much given up asking this one friend of mine for help. This person has told me that if I need something, to ask. Period. I did. A month ago. They said they’d help a week later… I checked in then… had to wait… and then wait… I know this person is dealing with a lot, hence why I’ve decided to no longer ask.

My only thing is that this month has SUCKED for tasks, which have been my only income for two years. All while trying to find steady employment I’m physically capable of. But this month has seen ONE task, one cancellation fee, and less than $200 in income. And that has gone to nudging my checking account back up to ZERO (thanks to the cell phone I need in order to run the app for getting tasks). So, I’ve had no usable income this month.

A month ago, when I got storage caught up before auction, I thought I’d have another decent month, so I didn’t worry so much about October. Then my app for getting tasks stayed silent. I had one cancel, one was fraudulent, and then the one I did get.

Another that was supposed to be today, but I don’t have the tools on my to mount things to concrete (better drill than what I have… which i have in storage, but can’t get to, and masonry drill bits, which I don’t have at all), so the whole thing, including assembly, got cancelled. Last night. Mind you, it wouldn’t have counted as October income anyway, as the billing would take a couple of days to process.

So, I need help just to get October paid. Then I can get in there and get tools out (if I can FIND the damn things) and my mattress and other stuff so I don’t look like I’m squatting in my own apartment.


Yesterday was Portia’s Gotcha Day Anniversary. 10/30/2010 is the day I adopted her. Eight years later, she’s saved me from suicide and getting stabby toward male humans who don’t understand personal space on transit (PTSD from sexual assault sucks when you’re on transit). We almost had a vet visit due to a couple of hotspots on her skin (that’s the one main health issue with her: sensitive skin and stomach). But no money, denied for CareCredit, and waiting for PAW Team to call back (it takes time to get an appt with them) all ended up with me just keeping an eye on her for now. They’re likely from stress-grooming, so my friend is going to hand off a partial bottle of CBD oil for pet use and I’ll try that in her wet food (which I need more of soon. See her wishlist on Amazon… if someone was so inclined).

My girl is now roughly 13… they said she was 4-5 when I adopted her. But no one really knows exactly how old she is. I’ve been saying she’s 12 for about 2 years now. So, I’ll finally bump it up to 13. Still a guess, though.

IMG_20180328_210201_131.jpg


Tomorrow is November 1st. The start of NaNoWriMo. This will be my 13th year straight. It’ll be fun and challenging, but I’m game. This year I have two ideas that I’m going to combine into one SF story. I also have a couple of backup tales if my characters take a break and don’t want to talk for a bit.

~A

Posted in activism, animal advocacy, animal welfare, anxiety, auction, cats, community, crowdfunding, disability, dogs, emergency, eviction, friends, homeless, homelessness, job hunting, life, storage, transitions, urgent

8/29: Random Requests, #Disability, #Dogs, and #Shelter Life (#crowdfunding)

I have ideas buzzing around in my head, but when I do manage to get them down, I can’t seem to form enough of a blog post to justify sharing.

Yes, I need help with storage. Massive help with storage. If I don’t get funds before Friday* it goes up to somewhere between $1600 and $1700. Is that achievable? Maybe. Honestly, I don’t know. I need to save my belongings. If people can use the GFM or PP, great. Although I now have a problem on PP. Hence the asterisk above.

* So, I am homeless. I have a P.O. Box. But that isn’t acceptable for PayPal to send a new debit card. I’ll have to wait to order a new card when I move. Until then, it’ll take time… the usual amount of time for a transfer to go through.

I also owe some people money. I hate not being able to pay them back as fast as I’d wanted to. Soon. Hopefully, very soon.


Disability Update: The judgment has been issued, but I won’t know it until the full thing is written up by one of the judges’ clerks. It’s been 2 1/2 months since my hearing and 1 1/2 since my case went to review. The clerk at the law office said I’m now getting into the time frame they normally see the decision handed down.

I touched on this on FB earlier today.

I’ve read and been told that I can make up to 30K/year and still receive benefits. This is apparently not true. There’s SO much misinformation out there. I can make about $14/hour part time. Which means someone will get an accounting clerk dirt cheap. C’est la Vie. I don’t think I can handle full time work anymore. Being out and about running between appointments and tasks the last few weeks has damn near killed me.

The other thing is the timing of the lump sum check. I have different people saying you get it immediately, others saying it takes months. So, I asked the clerk at the lawyer’s office for this as well. If the lump sum is over $20K, it takes extra signatures to approve it. Each set increment adds another signature. So, if it was 50K, yes, it would take a while. Mine could be as much as 30K, so it may be delayed a bit. I don’t know. We will see.


Dogs: I get it. You want to spoil your dog or cat. I do what I can to spoil Portia. And as I plan for the near future of getting a dog myself (I’m sure Portia will NOT be happy about it, but I’m working on how to help her adapt), I notice more and more how people treat their dogs.

And honestly, I’m not always impressed.

There was one resident here at the shelter who had her dog so well trained, she wouldn’t lick faces. Yes, you read that right, she didn’t lick faces. She was a sweet, well-tempered dog about 98% of the time. She had some moments.

Then you have others here who go over the top. One mostly has hers in a modded baby stroller. He’s obese. As in -I couldn’t tell if he was a boy or girl- when I first met them. Seriously. You couldn’t see the non-removable boy bits. He’s also extremely anxious and doesn’t do well if he isn’t part of the action.

Another… well, I couldn’t tell at first if the chi-dog could walk because her human always carried her. ALWAYS.

See, there’s a fine line between spoiling your dog and babying your dog. I intend to buy toys and nice beds and stuff for my future pupper/doggo. But I have zero intention of babying to the point of obesity or having people wonder if she can walk. Granted, I’m looking at getting a Groenendael (Belgian Shepherd, larger dog), so carrying won’t be feasible. We will see how things go. I will bend over backwards to make sure she’s healthy and happy, but going over the top is too much. I want my dog to be physically and mentally happy.

She’ll gradually be a working dog with a LOT of training over the first few years. But my desire to get a puppy and raise her with a lot of training is due, in part, to Portia not liking dogs. I want her to watch the puppy grow and the puppy to be raised with a cat so she knows how to behave around them. At least one breeder I’ve emailed agrees with this plan. And even if she doesn’t complete service training, she’ll still be a phenomenal and well trained dog.


I’ll likely do a more expanded assessment of the place I’m living now once I’m out and can get some distance. I do know one thing: 4 months may be the average time here, and what management wants everyone to aim for, but not everyone can fit that ideal. It just isn’t always doable. I’ve been here a shade over 5 months. And the ONLY reason I’m looking at getting out soon is because of CCC. As I go into their training program, I’m eligible for up to 6 months of rental assistance.

And one of the Case Managers here is leaving for good this week because, as she apparently said, she’s tired of breaking hearts. She sees the same problem with the “four month plan” that I do. It isn’t enough for everyone.


More tomorrow or… something. Tomorrow is a wild day. I have an Information Interview (not a job interview) at a local store (this is for the scholarship for the short term training classes) in the morning, then two doctor’s appts in the afternoon.

~A

Posted in anxiety, auction, cats, crowdfunding, depression, disability, emergency, faith, homeless, homelessness, housing, life, Personal, storage, urgent

8/29: quick post (panic) #crowdfunding

I am at my wit’s end. I’m so close to getting back into a place (with initial help from an agency), and I’m losing everything.

So, after Friday, the amount owed will go up to about $1600. My checking account is in the negative right now due to shit happening and not enough tasks.

I also need to pay to renew my P.O. Box before the end of the month. Another $41 I don’t have. And then the vet bill.

I’ll post more later… just putting this out there.

~A

Posted in adoption, anxiety, C-PTSD, cats, crowdfunding, depression, dogs, housing, life, PTSD, storage, urgent

8/6: Guilty Pleasure: Looking at Adoptable Dogs

[this started as FB status, hence the lines closer together]

With the idea that I’ll be moving on sooner rather than later, and hopefully into my own place, I’ve been looking at potential second pets. Namely, dogs. It’s a huge step, honestly. I haven’t had a dog since I was 15. Eventually, I want a dog I can train in not only obedience but as a PTSD dog. With help, of course. I certainly have my ideal breeds, but I may start with a rescue dog to get reacquainted with having a dog at all. 

Looking at local dogs on petfinder. Found a couple of cuties. Obviously, I’m nowhere near ready. But one advantage of getting a dog, other than training for PTSD, is that she would help with depression and anxiety. Both being aspects of my PTSD. And yes, I keep saying “she” because I’d prefer a girl dog.

 

But I also know that dogs are a whole other ballgame from having cats. Not even taking into account greater food intake and needing to be walked, there’s obedience training and other necessities. Something being here at the shelter has taught me is an absolute must. A well-trained dog goes a LONG way in pretty much everything. Especially being a good neighbor.

Here at the shelter, I’ve seen separation anxiety, breaking out of ‘jail,’ aggression toward dogs and humans, etc. I want to make sure any dog I have in my life can handle being around cats who may not like her, other dogs when out and about, and people in general.


So, I’m looking at dogs. I will never bitch about the price of purebreds I’ve been looking at (which are averaging $1200 to $1600). Yes, it’s more, but when rescue dog adoption fees are in the $300 to $600 range… urf! 

The breeds I’m looking at at German Shepherds (easier to find in rescue here) and two of the Belgian Shepherd breeds: Tervurens and Groenendaels. Those are my ideals for a service dog. And I’d definitely get a roughly 12 to 16 week old puppy so I can start obedience training from the start and then around a year old, start working on service training. 


I’m just kinda seeing what’s out there right now. I’ll know when I’m ready for a dog. I hope.

~A